Showing posts from September, 2009
People are stupid. Don't try and deny that, because in the space of 2 minutes I witnessed some jackass sleeping at a green light and some other jackass driving in reverse down the road (towards me).

People are stupid.
I read something interesting the other day. It was a little piece going on about how we bury ourselves in a mountain of cars, television, video games, and other materialization in order to hide from the real issues of the world. I paid attention to this because I felt it was speaking to me. And it garnered this attention not simply because I read it and said to myself, "Hey, wait a minute, I play video games so what are you trying to say, buddy?!", but because it made me stop and think about it and wonder, "Okay, *am* I hiding from something?"

The truth of the matter is, what "issues" should I be confronting out there in that real world? Let's scan the headlines and see what's on our plate right now: The first headline I see is about Iran. Should I be worried that Iran is going to send a nuclear missing into my backyard? If so, how is worrying about it going to make the situation better? Will it stop that missile from wiping out millions of…

Name That Tune

Usually, when I get a song stuck in my head, I know one of three things. I either know the name of the song, I know the band that sings it, or I know at least one piece of the lyrics. Any of these things will allow me to find the song very easily. Sometimes, however, I will have none of these and the task of finding the song becomes quite difficult. Such a case happened to me last night. I basically only knew two words from the song, which were very common words: "Are you". I also knew what the singer sounded like and that I did indeed own the song somewhere. This meant the best way to find the song was to go through my playlist and find all the artists who sound like the singer in my head. This adds up to 4,000 tracks.

I didn't find it last night, but I did finally find it tonight after going through the playlist one more time. The song is Radiate by Puddle of Mudd.

What a Long, Strange Trip It's Been


Strange Dream

I don't remember my dreams very much. I know I dream all the time, but they're usually out of my head as soon as I open my eyes in the morning. Often, if I do remember a dream it is because I see or hear something the next day that triggers a memory of it. For example, this morning I got an email from This reminded me that last night I dreamed I got a new kitten and ordered immunization shots for it.

I remembered a really strange one from two nights ago. Jeff actually reminded me of it, and the trigger was only him mentioning that he also had a strange dream that night. I was walking down the road very close to my own house at the end of the driveway. There were two people walking with me. I know they were friends of mine, but I cannot remember who they were exactly. Soon, a pickup truck came speeding up the road. The driver lost control and hit a tree. A baby flew out of the window of the truck and landed in the grass. The three of us went over and…
Now that I've finished the Story Mode of Batman, I've going back through the whole map trying to solve all the riddles. Not sure I'm going to have the patience for this, though, because it's only been 20 minutes and already I want to punch some bad guys. But I can't, cause they're all gone now that I've beaten the game. Bah. Here's a few shots from the end of the game.

Batman Video

I recorded a little video clip of me doing some fighting in Batman. The combat, especially hand-to-hand combat, is excellent. I made two mistakes in this fight (you'll see I get hit twice). The first time I just wasn't fast enough on the block button. The second time, I hit Batarang by accident. Dur-de-dur. Anyway, enjoy the video.

(Better do a right-click, save target as.)
So I've got about 15 minutes before I leave work, and I actually have free time. This is something that hasn't happened in, oh, about three months. This project has been royally pissing me off lately, as this past weekend showed. (See previous post.) Yesterday was bad as well, and I must have been wearing my "look at me wrong and die" expression on my face, because my boss was prompted to ask me if I was okay. That then led into the "without you we would have had to layoff 3 people" speech. Uplifting? Okay, maybe a little bit. But it doesn't change the fact that I'm tired, dammit.

But hey, I'm leaving on time today. And I left on-time yesterday. And Monday, too. For now, I've got my head above water on this stupid project, and hopefully I can keep it there.
I'm often misunderstood, and this is a prime example of such:

I finished a major project for work over the weekend. The request from the customer was unreasonable, because the amount of work they sent us and the timeframe in which they wanted it completed was ridiculous. We didn't make any promises, of course, but that didn't stop my boss from asking me to work on Saturday along with 2 other members of my team. To make a long story short, we got the project done ahead of schedule.

All weekend long I was getting emails from vice-presidents of the company congratulating us and saying how great of a job we did and how we really "turned that account around". That last part pissed me off, because they just don't get it. They don't get it at all. We didn't turn shit around. All we did is ensure the next time this customer makes a request as ridiculous as this one, they are going to expect that we get it done just as quickly as we completed this one.


Batman: Arkham Asylum

Right off the bat (bad pun #432) I just want to say that I'm impressed. I was expecting a dumbed down game. I was expecting something for children of about 10 (even though it's rated T for Teen). I guess part of this is because I was force fed utterly stupid and campy Batman movies for most of my childhood. I remember watching the 1960's TV show on FX when I was a pre-teen and thinking it was the most ridiculous thing I'd ever seen in my life. Then Tim Burton came around and he did a fairly good job. The first time. His second one was awful. And then it got campy again. So yeah, I was expecting a campy arcade game. I'm pleasantly surprised.

First, let's go over the bad.

Controls -- I'm the kind of guy who likes to set his keybindings on the fly. If I don't like the way I mapped something, I want to change it in game. You can't do that in this game. You have to exit all the way out of the game and start it up again to change any keybinding…
I watched two remakes this weekend. Actually, it's becoming increasingly difficult to find new movies that AREN'T remakes. Here's an idea for you, Hollywood: Why don't you make The Dark Tower into a film series? Or make a film based on It that is actually good and doesn't have Tim Curry in it? Or even one based on Cell (one of Stephen King's more recent novels). I'm sure he'd sell the rights to you for about $19.

Anyway, enough with the tangent. I could go on and on about that all day. In any case, I watched Halloween and Friday the 13th. Already these movies are at a disadvantage, because you know what's going to happen. They can change the plot from the original all they want, but it all comes down to the same thing no matter how you slice it. (Pun intended.) And that is, it's a guy in a mask chopping people up. That's all it is, and that's all people are going to expect, and that's all you can give them.

The reasons w…

More Wolfenstein

And this post will be more than just pictorial. For starters, this is a solid shooter. Very enjoyable and action packed, and not too short. It's not a heavy-weight though. It's no Half-Life 2. There's no meat to it, I should say, and that's fine because Return to Castle Wolftenstein didn't have too much meat to it either, though it had more than this game has. This game feels very arcade-like. It feels very console-like. Part of this I blame on what I call the "Achievement Insanity Era". Find all the gold achievement! Kill this many Nazis achievement! Blow up this many barrels achievement! Yeah. And suddenly your game has no plot, no story, and is nothing but a bunch of goals to achieve.

In any case, I didn't particularly pick this game up for a good story. I picked it up to kill Nazis like Brad Pitt in Inglorious Basterds. And there are plenty of Nazis to kill. Normal Nazis. Super-powered Nazis. Zombie Nazis. Oh yes. And really, th…

And why isn't it like that all the time?

I'm downloading a movie right now, and it's clipping along at 1,545 KB/s. I remember about a year or so ago, I would get about 800 KB/s.

This is just another reason to hate Comcast. They only increase your bandwidth when everyone else does too and there might actually be a possibly you would switch to their competitor. Sadly I don't have a competitor to switch too, but that's beside the point. I still hate them.

The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands

The introductions are over.

A whole hell of a lot happens in this book, so much more than any of the previous ones. It is truly adventure on an epic scale. I'm very envious of how good King is able to write. I'm quite humbled, actually. The first book reminded me of a western. The second, a fleshing out of main characters, albeit quite action packed. This third book is basically Tokien without the boring parts.

There are not many resolutions in this book. Even the very end is a cliffhanger. But many things are set up. One, the quest for the Dark Tower is now happening in full. Next, we see each of the strengths and weaknesses of the four gunslingers. We see what they are good at, and we hear them admit what they are not good at. And the beautiful part of this is just how well they compliment each other. Together, you really get the feeling they could do anything.

Most importantly to the core story, however, we learn exactly what the Dark Tower is and what it repre…