Thursday, July 30, 2009

I have to participate in a customer training session this evening at 9:00 PM. It's scheduled for this strange hour, because the people we are training are located in Hong Kong, and that is 9:00 AM their time. I don't really mind, and the session is only going to last an hour. There was talk a few weeks ago that I might be sent to Hong Kong for a week for training, and I think I'd rather do that instead of having to work from home at 9:00 at night. I've never been to Hong Kong, or anywhere in Asia, so it would be a cool experience for me, I think. But hey, I do what I gotta do. And this is only one night, working from home, rather than a week away from home...

Monday, July 27, 2009

I'm a fan of Stephen King, though I will admit that I didn't read his last two novels: Duma Key and Lisey's Story. I did read Cell, however, and enjoyed it immensely. I dunno, the plots of the former two just didn't appeal to me.

Regardless, I'm looking forward to his next book, due out in November and called Under the Dome. A synopsis:

On an entirely normal, beautiful fall day in Chester’s Mill, Maine, the town is inexplicably and suddenly sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. Planes crash into it and fall from the sky in flaming wreckage, a gardener’s hand is severed as “the dome” comes down on it, people running errands in the neighboring town are divided from their families, and cars explode on impact. No one can fathom what this barrier is, where it came from, and when—or if—it will go away. Dale Barbara, Iraq vet and now a short-order cook, finds himself teamed with a few intrepid citizens—town newspaper owner Julia Shumway, a physician’s assistant at the hospital, a select-woman, and three brave kids. Against them stands Big Jim Rennie, a politician who will stop at nothing—even murder—to hold the reins of power, and his son, who is keeping a horrible secret in a dark pantry. But their main adversary is the Dome itself. Because time isn’t just short. It’s running out.

Sounds quite interesting, but at 1500 pages it's going to be painful as hell to read.

I saw this headline this morning:

“American Idol” Hopeful Alexis Cohen Killed In Car Accident

Read it very carefully. Say it out loud. It sounds like American Idol is hoping this woman is killed. I realize that's not what they mean, but it's a horrible way to word a headline.

Ghostbusters: The Video Game

Not bad. Not bad at all. When picking up this game to play it, I had hopes that I would be subjected to the same kind of experience I got when I watch the movies, and happily that's exactly what I got. It's a game that captures the feeling of the movies perfectly, mixes in the right amount of comedy, and doesn't take itself too seriously. Add in the fact that all the ghostbusters are rendered to look exactly like they did back in the 80's and are voiced by the respective actor's who played the parts, and it's hard to find something bad to say about it.

The one thing I was wondering about was how they were going to handle the whole ghost catching thing. Obviously you're going to be doing a lot of ghost catching in the game (duh), so how do you prevent it from becoming too repetitive? They did a pretty good job at this. At it's core, they made ghost catching just complicated enough to remain interesting throughout the game, but at the same time make it easy to learn. Additionally, the upgrades you can purchase add new life to old abilities later in the game.

Simply put, this game isn't something I would spend hours upon hours playing. But when I'm looking for a good 1-2 hour timekiller, I'd be hard pressed to find something more fun than this game, especially if you're a fan of the films.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Ok, I could totally do this for a living.

These guys composited stuff they filmed with Half-Life 2 game footage and created a short film. That had to be fun. And it looks damn good, too.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Being a child that was born, relatively speaking and especially during the time I was born, late, I knew that I would have to have a certain level of maturity beyond what my age suggested. I would have to deal with certain things in my life ten, fifteen, maybe even twenty years before other normal people my age.

My parents were 40 years old when they had me. While not totally uncommon these days, it's still not something that's regularly practiced. It was even less common back in 1981 when I was born. From the time when I was mature enough to generally think for myself and ponder life's problems, I knew that I would have to deal with at least one certain fact of life long before normal people my age -- that of my parents getting older.

My parents are now 69 and 68 respectively, and I am 28. And this week, the first sign that my parents are getting old has not only shown itself, but has come crashing into my life way too loudly than anyone would have liked.

Currently, my father is laying in a hospital bed. He feels fine, but a routine stress test led the doctors to discover that he requires double heart bypass surgery. His largest artery leading to his heart is blocked by 95%. 99 out of every 100 people with that much blockage in that particular artery either show up to the hospital in an ambulance, or in a body bag. He walked in.

Sitting down now after visiting him at the hospital, I'm left feeling depressed that I'm *here* already. My parents are getting old, already. And no amount of personal conditioning that you've done to yourself will make it any less painful when something finally does happen, such as this.

As depressing as that may be, I'm ever thankful that right here and right now, they are both still with me, and I am thankful for that all of the time -- not just when something bad happens. That is one of the perks of being a late child. It gives you that awareness that you need to cherish *right now* before it's gone.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Remember that old arcade game Asteroids?

Someone bought the rights to make a movie out of it.

Yes. They're out of ideas, ladies and gentlemen.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

So here is the most memorable moment I have of this weekend:

My sister and I were up in the attic, going through all the crap and separating things out into stuff we wanted to keep and stuff we could throw away. She had just finished filling up a garbage bag full of stuff to throw out, and I picked it up to toss it down the stairs. As I picked it up, I noticed a light coming out of the bag.

She threw her flashlight away.


Friday, July 03, 2009

I'm spending part of my weekend doing some much overdue cleaning out of my basement. It's quite amazing the amount of CRAP one person can collect over the course of time. Just to give you an idea of how long it's been since I've gone back into that corner of the basement, I found the wristband that my mother wore when she went to the hospital to give birth to me. Yeah. Get the picture?

It's a painfully arduous task, sifting through all this stuff. But, I have come across some cool stuff, too. Stuff that I've forgotten all about and hadn't thought of for at least ten years. Most of it was the usual stuff: photographs, old toys, my old magic stuff (I loved playing magician), things of that nature. Two things kind of stood out to me however. In an old, dusty box I found two nearly crumbled up sets of papers. One is the final issue of my high school newspaper. The other is a paper I wrote for my senior year World Literature class.

It was reading through the school paper, and it also made me remember just how much I kept to myself. You won't find me in there very much. Somehow, someone did get me to submit a "Senior Will", but that's about it. There was one thing that made me laugh, in the "In Ten Years..." section. "In ten years Steve Morris will be the 9 time reigning national horseshoe champion." Close. It was six years.

The paper I wrote was a reinterpretation of Dante's Inferno for Mrs. Nicely. It was fun reading that thing again. Mrs. Nicely's summary she wrote on the front still makes me laugh:

"Steve, your cartoon inferno showcases your creative talents. By focusing on one area - cartoons - you have provided continuity. The punishments fit the crimes. However, your Satan level is too crude."

Me? Too crude? NEVER!


Holy smokes.  The last post I wrote for this blog was on October 18, 2017.  Through the little more than  two years since, this blog has be...