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By: Genus (aka Christa Weber)

Stoners of the year of 2001: 

Wear wrist protection. 

If I could offer you only one tip for 
the Stone, wrist protection would be it.
 The long-term benefits of wrist 
protection have been proved by scientists,
 whereas the rest of my advice has no 
basis more reliable than my own
 meandering experience. I will 
dispense this advice now. 

Enjoy the fun and excitement of 
being a newbie . Oh, never mind. You
 will not understand the fun and 
excitement of being a newbie until 
youíve reached the Lodge. But trust me,
 in 6.378 years, when the game is complete,
 you'll think back to being 2/56 and 
recall in a way you can't grasp now how 
much possibility lay before you and 
how much fun the Sorry, No page really
 was. You are not as thickheaded as you

Don't worry about the puzzles to be released.
 Or worry, but know that worrying is as 
effective as trying to solve a Movement
 puzzle by conventional means. The real
 troubles in your life are apt to be 
Closes that never crossed your frazzled
 mind, the kind that blindside you at
 4 a.m. on some Tuesday morning when 
you have a really big project due the next day. 

Research on a puzzle every day that scares you.
Tell others. 

Don't flame other people's posts. 
Don't put up with people who flame yours. 

Try to go out at least once a week, 
the Stone will be there when you get back. 

Don't waste your time on jealousy. 
Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're
 behind. The race is long and, in the end, 
it's only with every other person in the 
whole big enigma. 

Remember nudges you receive. Forget the 
pointless banter. If you succeed in 
doing this, tell me how. 

Keep your old notes. Throw away your 
disgusting take out pizza boxes. 


Don't feel guilty if you don't know how 
to begin a puzzle. The most brilliant people
 I know didn't know at 22/56 where to 
go next. Some of the most brilliant 56/56ís 
I know I still don't.
Get plenty of sunlight. Be kind to your 
computer. You'll miss them when the aliens 
do come and take you.
Maybe you'll finish, maybe you won't. 
Maybe you'll solve a puzzle first, 
maybe you won't. Maybe you'll quit 
tomorrow, maybe you'll find those Abject 
people and throttle them, damnit, agh! 
Whatever you do, don't congratulate 
yourself too much, or berate yourself 
either. Your solving skills are pretty 
much the same as everyone elseís. 

Enjoy your search engine. Use it 
every way you can. Don't be afraid of
 it or of what other people think of 
it. It's the greatest instrument you'll ever own. 


Read the Black Book, even if you don't
 get it. 

Do not watch television. It 
will only take you away from the Stone.

Get to know your parents. You never 
know when they'll know the answer to 
that really hard puzzle. Be nice to your 
siblings. They're not going to help you otherwise. 

Understand that friends come and go, but 
the people on the Stone will love 
you forever . Work hard to bridge the 
gaps in geography and lifestyle, because 
the more involved you get, the more you 
need the people who know you from the Stone. 

Go to a Gathering once, but leave before
 it makes you weird. Go to  Journey 
expedition once, and leave if you find 
the piece.  


Accept certain inalienable truths: 
The aliens are coming. Atlantis is real. 
You, too, will find the answer. And when 
you do, you'll fantasize about when you 
were naive, and not a slave of the Gornots 
and their Fantastic Super Alliance with Abject.
Respect the Stonekeepers. 

Don't expect anyone else to give you 
answers. Maybe you have a Stonemate. 
Maybe you'll have a surragate stonemate. 
But you never know when either one might stop playing. 

Don't screw around too much on the
 commons or people WILL flame you. 

Be careful whose nudges you take, but 
be patient with the Stonekeepers. 
Puzzle are often in the form of tedious
 busy-work.  Often the puzzle is a way 
of taking information, painting over the 
ugly parts and recycling it for more than 
it's worth (about $19.95)

But trust me on the wrist protection. 

You can e-mail me at:
(Nudges, and whatnot)