Saturday, August 14, 2010

Plucking up the flaming sword that bars eden

So hi. We haven't been talking much have we? I've gone from writing one to three enteries a week down to less than one, and now when I do write it is about games that only I care about. Sorry about that. I am not leaving you for another activity I swear. I still love you my little blog, I promise. It is just that, well some things are going to have to change. Sorry about that kiddo but sometimes these things just sort of happen.

It is just that, well, I've been looking around more and more and I've reached an intolerable level of frustration. More and more I see people around me who's lives are ruled by fear and ignorace. People who are privileging their randomized ideas about things over factual information from reputable sources. People who would rather hide from the world than deal with any part of it. I look our over things and it seems like we are entering into a new dark ages.

I mean jesus, we have people who are refusing to innoculate their children against diseases that will kill them because there is a 2% chance that something bad might happen to them. Actually I think it is less than two percent but you know how it is. People who think that paying 10,000 dollars to be put under for a surgery is just fine and that poor people don't need any insurance. People who can't handle the fact that we have a black president who is trying his damnedest to change our country using a system that he believes in, even though many of us have long ago ceased to believe in it. I may not agree with all of his choices but I do respect the amount of activity he has managed to pump out. It goes on and on though.

I look out over the tea party and it is almost like they want someone to stand up and shout that, "Yes everything is bad, the world is falling apart, that doom will befall us all and that christianity will be whipped off the face of the earth in a wave of commie china wrath." They want everything to be bad and there to be both blood and pain present.

Net neutrality is under attack. evan wanted me to write a blog on the topic but I don't really feel the need to. Essentially, net neutrality means that ISP's are not allowed to give preferencial treatment to certain web pages over other ones. So no matter if I am going to twitter, a white supreamacist forum, an animal porn site, or this blog they will all be alloacted an equal amount of bandwidth by you isp. What companies want to do is to change that. This way certain sites can pay money to load faster, or they can choke the bandwidth to certain sites they don't agree with like everything in the .xxx domain. The arguments for it are freedom of speech. I mean look around you, the internet is pretty much one of the last things that functions like I think it should. Anyone can say anything they want for free and people are free to come and go as they choose. Little people have a voice and it is loud enough so that news organizations had to give them a name, the bloggers.

The arguments agains? Well pretty much it boils down to, "But we can make more money this way :(" Hopefully net neutrality will survive but I don't know.

So here we are. But I am not in this place that I just outlined above. I am somewhere else. I know that because of math and science that cosmologists are reasonably certain that they are able to predict what the universe was like 6 seconds after the big bang happened. Can you imagine that? We pretty much know what happened right after the start of the universe. My computer that I am typing this blog entry right now is more powerful than the computers used to preform the first moon landing. In fact if I were to go back in time and to tell the people who organized the moon landing that not even 100 years later something smaller than a text book could connect wirelessly to a web of compleatly user generated information for only 120 bucks I doubt they would believe me. Hell we lauched the moon shuttle using vaccume tubes. Don't fuck with things.

Because of the internet I can listen to music from all over the world, easily and for free and right now I am not even talking about piracy, I am saying that it is something that is just doable thanks to things like youtube and pandora.

We live in a fantastic age where so much is possible and so much of it is beauitful and instead I see so many people dead set on making it as shitty as humanly possible and I am not sure how I feel about that. I mean we can put a man on the moon but black people are still killed for no more reason than the color of their skin. In the 80's america did enough cocaine to create a new band of terrorism, called narco terrorism. We created men who ran countries through fear and power. We even made one man so powerful that he kidnapped 12 american journalists so that his government would build him a prison. We beat this problem through education, coordination of law enforcement agencies, and cooperation with the forgien governments. Now in mexico we are faced with a situation that is actually FAR less dangerous and yet we have people screaming about how it is INSURMOUNTABLE.

I see a world of hope through education and wisdom when so many other people see a world of fear and ignorance.

I say no more.

But what can I do? Go forth and educate the masses? Not my style or theirs. To them I am cracker nibbling liberal. So what?

I've decided the best thing I can do is to game. Yeah that most certainly sounds counter intuitive but hear me out. The one thing that adults don't do nearly enough is dance. The other thing adults don't do nearly enough is play games. I am not talking my complex geek games that take up all my time and much of my energy. But you know simple things like sharades, card games, maybe risk, things like that. The thing is that you can learn more from playing a game with someone for an hour than you could through years of conversation. You can tell who is honerable, who cheats, and how willing are they to have just plain old fun.

The most fun I have ever seen a group of adults have is when they were geeking out.

I am talking about good natured honest fun too. The trick is to walk the line between what I want to do and escapism. What I want to do is to be keenly aware of the problems of the world around me. I want to understand the challanges that face the people in charge, and I want to be relativly informed about what the rest of the world is doing and why. I want to have a historical perspective, and look my fears in the face. Then despite all of these things I still want to be able to laugh, enjoy a nice game of malifaux or mutants and masterminds with my friends, and to ultimatly love my life.

I don't want to become a beaten down shell of a person who can only spit venom, and see the worst in every situation hoping the world burns down around me so I get to be right. I don't want to become one of those people who fanatically cling to my petty material possestions all the while shouting down new social reforms to help thous who actually need it.

In order to do this though, I need to play. Sorry.

Gaming isn't a panecia. I know. Spending more time at TBS has taught me this if nothing else.
It is what I need though. It is the way I enjoy spending time with my friends, and it is what keeps me laughing and living in spite of it all. Things aren't so bad. They really aren't. I think people want to believe that everything is hopeless so they won't have to do anything, a bizzare form of denile or something like that. I don't think anything is hopeless. Not yet at least.

So for awhile I will be writting lots more about Malifaux, mutants and masterminds, and anything else that interests me and that will be okay. These are amazing times and I will enjoy them no matter how much anyone else wants me to be as miserable and scared as they are.

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