Monday, February 26, 2007

Valuable. Too valuable.

I've beat Jonathan twice in Supreme Commander matches. I better let him roll me sometime here soon, otherwise he'll quit playing me.

Tournament this weekend! 8 games in three days. Going to be a lot of fun...

No other real life news. None of you people commented on my previous post, so I'm just going to assume that no one reads this anymore, and start denigrating people by name.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Boron cubes are best in potato soup

Well, now. I glanced at a couple of blogs over break at work today. One of them had a link to the ikeahacker blog. I read a couple of the posts, and was intrigued. First, I was intrigued at the stark industrialism that seems to pervade the 'design-chic' aesthetic right now. Just like a MacBook, it's all about brushed steel, raw wood, single colors, thick lines. So it seems to me. Then I was thinking about how I bought cheap chairs when I moved into the house that are now all mostly broken, and that we need new chairs. I thought, "Maybe I should check out ikea's online catalog, and order some chairs. They might be more expensive, but they'd probably last longer." I also thought about seeing if a friend I know who is a carpenter would build me some chairs. I also thought about building my own chairs.

Now, more to the point of this little article. I thought about Fight Club. Yes, Fight Club. Which I have to admit to having seen. It includes a line wherein the nararator says, 'I would flip through catalogs and wonder "what kind of dining set defines me as a person?"' The movie, while being violent and profane, is also a social commentary on the consumerism that our culture is sinking to. Me? Well, I admit my computer desk at home is black. I admit that I bought it because it was black. I also admit that it was cheap and on sale at the office supply store. My desk, while perhaps spartan and stark, does have some simple trinkets on it. That's right, trinkets. Not 'pieces of art that demonstrate my cool', not 'conversation starters', trinkets. Momentoes. Gifts. I have, outside of my computer and related accessories, a rock from the Mediterranean that my neato twin sister gave me, a onyx turtle from Turkey that my Dad gave me, a twigcil, a picture of my sister, and a cool lemur that my older sister gave to me.

My dining room table is a mass-produced piece (that came with the 4 chairs that are now one chair because the rest have broken), I have a couch and matching chair that I got second hand cheap, my parents' old "great chair", that is seriously one of the more comfortable chairs in Western Civilization to seat and read in, a coffee table that I nicked from my parents. My bedroom furniture is mostly second hand, my CD collection is housed in a functional, black piece of molded plastic, and my bookself was built by my dad twenty, twenty five years ago. Heck, even my 'dining service' is either second hand, or standard K-Mart fare. I have eight glass 'beer steins' that I bought at the Dollar Tree.

Why do I rant so, you may ask? I think about some of my friends. Good people. Have ikea-esque houses, apartments, whatever. Brushed steel. Stark wood. Art pieces. Funky shaped glasses. 'Nice stuff.' I ask myself, "Is my lack of conformity to the designer chic inhibiting my ability to have a girlfriend?" Maybe, just maybe, if I filled my house with ying-yang coffee tables, modern-art couches, maybe then someone will finally love me. Would it be worthwhile to make superficial changes to my life in a most likely vain attempt to attract the long term interest of an attractive and successful female?

Interrelated to all of this is a post that I read from Jeff Atwood of Coding Horror. In the post, he talks about his office, and how and what he has arranged in it. Now, I think Mr. Atwood is a highly competent and entertaining writer, and I read most everything he posts. This is not meant as a personal denegration, more of a lifestyle comment. If I needed to pack my personal effects at work, and leave, I could do it in two minutes. The only things that I have that I don't normally take home with me are a coat, a mug, and earbud headphones. That's it. The extent of decorations in my office is an old battery that came out of a dead scanner, wall art also known as project flowcharts, and two pages of xkcd printed out. When I move, it will probably take me two or three hours, at most, to transfer items from house to transportation mode, then from transportation to new location. It might take longer if I take the couches and dresser, but not that much more.

Get to the point, you're yelling! The point is made thusly.

People get their identity wrapped up in different things. For some people, they proclaim their identity throught their decorative tastes. For another set of people, it is proclaimed through their job. Others, their families, religious beliefs, hobbies, sports teams, music, fashion, geographic location, politics, community involvement, food, ideology, relationships, whatever. Me? I don't know how I proclaim my identity. While all these things mentioned above can be used to describe someone, there is usually one characteristic that overridingly defines that person. You know people, everyone does, that if you say one word, and it describes them. Here, let's play a fun, insular game. I'll name three characteristics, one of which can be used to simply define someone, and you post back on my blog, and tell me if you can easily and quickly guess which three friends I am referring to. The characteristics are football, tutoring, farming.

See, that was pretty easy, wasn't it? And additionally, no offense to any of the three people, but if you don't know them, you can make some mental extrapolations off of the fact that those characteristics define them, and come up with what might be a fairly accurate description of that person.

Which, again, leads back to the point. What word is a defining characteristic of me? Is that how I want to be defined? Because whether I want to or not, those definitions are what is prevalent in the minds of others. We can't help but seek for ways to classify and categorize people, to better understand them. If we're smart, it becomes less of a labelling game, and more of a 'construct the Venn diagram game'. But, really, what defines me? Do I need to work to change that perception? Am I unaware of the perception? Is this a problem, or not?

Marginally, I would also like to ask if anyone can understand why I whine out to the dark internet like this?

Oh, and the answer to the word that defines me is not emo. I don't have the haircut (the mullet is God's gift to men's hairstyling) or the eyeshadow, thanks!

Thursday, February 22, 2007


My dreams are more and more asymmetrical of late. This is disturbing to me.

Supreme Commander arrived yesterday! Wahoo!

Unfortunately, I only got to play for half an hour, because after Kidmo I got shanghaied into spending more time on sound stuff at church. I really am getting frustrated with the whole deal, but what can you do?

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Gums for real

It's nice outside.

It's not nice inside.

I've got your smoking gun.

Maybe if I listen to Norma Jean on my headphones really loud for a while, I'll actually care about something.

I'm so emo, and tired, that it is cold in here.

Monday, February 19, 2007

A pot of meal

Thankfully, it seems, the winter season is closing. And even though I enjoy the bleak desolation found in a snow covered landscape, the bitter cold overstayed its welcome. When one finds that it takes 5 minutes to warm up when entering from the harsh wind, it is time for it to get warm again.

I get frustrated with people often. I usually avoid letting it show. Like this weekend, when I was running sound, and I kept hearing stories about how often someone has gotten burned by having inattentive sound people who don't turn microphones up when someone goes to talk. Yes, thank you, I'm sorry you had those bad experiences, but why do you insist on remembering them when they were ten years ago? Similarily, what dost thou hope to accomplish by repeating them to me, who is currently semi-graciously bailing you out of a jam? Folks, these are the kind of things that make a sound guy disinclined to put much effort into your performance/song, or "accidentally" forget to turn your microphone on. Oh, and please quit saying things are a "soundman's worst nightmare." You apparently have no idea what my worst nightmare is, which is only to be remembered for screwing things up.


My juvenalia is fast reaching levels where continuing in it is untenable, and when that happens, I fear a superfluous conundrum of epistomological proportions. Forsooth, nigh unto the anglophiliacs I sway, peradventure some stochastic process intervenes in my days? Nay, such a revelation would undermine the very annealing that has been occuring.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Well, my days of not taking you seriously are definitely coming to a middle.

Man walks down the street in a hat like that, you know he's not afraid
of anything.

The Creature Walks

Ball team played OK last night, still lost by 15. One of the kids dislocated his shoulder. Again. During the game. Hopefully he bounces back soon. Didn't get home until 11:00. Am staying up way too late tonight typing this up.

I have had a request for a Valentine's day post.

Before I rant or despair for a while, I do have two humourous stories.

First, I was playing Supreme Commander for a while tonight, and I had 3 Monkeylords attack the enemy ACU from 3 seperate directions, and I managed to queue them up so they all fired their main, huge laser at him at the same time. Didn't think to get a screenie, but it was cool.

Secondly, I was backing down my driveway this evening to got to church when I realized, "There's a car in front of my drive. It's lights are off. It's parked. Grr." So I knocked on three different neighbors' doors before I found the one the car belonged to. Actually, it belonged to a guest, an older gent, who graciously came out and moved his car. Kinda annoying, but no big deal really. I just thought it was wierd, because I think he would have had to parallel park there. Also, when I had arrived at home from work, Jonathan was just pulling out of the driveway, so it was the second time today my driveway was blocked.

As far as Valentine's day...

Well, we didn't have KidMo tonight because it was Valentine's day, which I thought was kinda dumb. I told them I could sure be there, why couldn't everyone else? It was probably just as well, so I didn't have to see people talk about their Valentines. I went to church anyway to help with sound, since I told them I wouldn't do it on Sunday so I could teach Sunday School, so I would help the people that are going to do it since they've never done it before. And I think people just make too big of deal of it, and I wish people would just understand that when I say something, I don't mean it as a personal attack and that they're more than welcome to mix sound however they want to, no, if you like that, it sounds fine, I mix differently and I don't like how that sounds, and it's not totally objective because I don't listen to your kind of music casually, but people just don't guess that because I don't look or act to overtly crazy all of the time.

I have poetry/random brain effluence that I will try to type up and share someday soon.

My mother and father gave me root beer, and this absolutely awesome cake mix that all I have to do is put water in, stir, and bake. That stuff is probably the coolest thing since the Carter administration, and I am definitely making it this weekend.

It is ridiculously cold outside, and I hate it and wish it would stop.

Valentine's Day? I don't even care. But then, I don't care about a lot of things. I spent the evening with first, my computer, and then second, at church. Either I'm goofing off, or I'm trying to buy my absolution or reputation with works intended not to help, but to impress. The things we do just because that's what we do. Because someone asked us. Because we don't care enough to do anything else.

I have this sneaking paranoia that everyone at work distrusts me, and doesn't want anything to do with me. I am probably over analyzing, and know that probably it's that they just don't care if they interact with me. I admit that I'm maybe not the most inviting of conversation, but I didn't think I was an ogre, either. I'm not rude or anything, I don't think. I am also pretty sure that I haven't had a friendly conversation with a non-related female this year. Oh, I've had conversations, but about task-related things. This leads to disinclination to let myself care about Valentine's Day, because I know it's just going to make it hurt more if I start to think about it.

Hey, requestor[s], I tried, I really did, to muster some vitrol or energy to make this post. I only succeeded in drawing out the ennui. In a 32 bit world, I'm a 2 bit user. I've got my own newsgroup...

Monday, February 12, 2007


Reading World War II history books as a kid affected me enough that any time someone talks about WASPs (White, Anglo-Saxon Protestants), I can't help but think of the Women Airforce Service Pilots.

Is that wierd or what?

Respondent and in tune

Emerging to standard and the desolated relegation.
Spending cash, unallocated funds. For revelation, please ask.
Abacai and other intent calculative devices.
The deferred revolution is just one that isn't yet worthwhile.
Irrigation. And the unformed became retreated.
Causeway and the Foucalt. Free to derange.
Walking giants and errant soma dispensaries.

I'm going to waste it all, placed in all in a far away fate.
Feeling just like a reef as the waves and the ships approach.
Foreground was synthesized, and so where does that leave them?

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Or never fare


Basketball going fairly ok. I think there's more potential then where we're playing at right now, but what can one do? Not going to start yelling and screaming at the kids, so we just encourage them and keep going. I was somewhat pleased with one of them on Friday night. Got real frustrated at a foul call, but sucked it in, brushed it off, and kept going. In the past he might have exploded, but hopefully this is a sign of increasing maturity.

The Supreme Commander demo is pretty fun. It's got a couple of missions, and then the full tech tree of one side. I have entirely too much fun playing the AI on easy and wiping it out with Monkeylords. :) :) :) I don't use 'emoticons' much, but just thinking about doing this makes me grin expressively.

I woke up early today. I have to be at church at 7:45, and it's 6:30. So I'm going to go play with Monkeylords for a while!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

What the grappling hook didn't know...

Some days, I may not be able to speak in coherent sentences or spell my own name, but wow, can I parallel park.

Supreme Commander demo came out today! I wonder if I'll be able to download it tonight, or if the servers will be swamped...

Monday, February 05, 2007

Descending from.../.../.


The Etruscan Naval Officer was on the phone with a certain person, but then left the room before I could get my computer booted up to play ZAO at an extremely loud volume, proving to annoy him and this... personage.

Hmmm... He's on the cordless land line... Nah, that would be mean...


I was listening to ZAO and thinking, "Hey, I haven't listened to them in a while, these guys really are pretty good." It was then that I recalled, yes, all is right with the world, it now totally makes sense that I have no girlfriend. Honestly, it does! This is funny to me for many, some perhaps varied inexplicably, reasons.

Roman historiography, or the best SF from Wales?

Alastair Reynolds has a new book coming out in April! I can't wait. The only problem is that I'll probably have to wait until May because of the import... Maybe I can use the UK bookstore I bought Galatic North from again... I'll have to check on that when I get home tonight, so this is as much a reminder to me as a note of enthusiasm to both people who read my blog!

Bonus! The Prefect is a Revelation Space/Yellow Stone/Inhibitor novel! Not that Pushing Ice wasn't highly enjoyable, but I'm really excited to see Reynolds exploring more of the dynamic that he created in RS. It's such a rich universe, too, with numerous settings for any kind of story throughout the timeline...

Supreme Commander in 2 weeks, and new Reynolds in a couple months? The only better news, entertainment wise, would be Peter Jackson making the Hobbit moive, Vernor Vinge soon publishing the next "Zones of Thought" novel, GRRM finishing A Song of Ice and Fire, and Fallout 3 and S.T.A.L.K.E.R. being good games. We can only hope.