Saturday, October 29, 2011

Moving Onwards!

This will be one of my last posts here for awhile national novel writting month is on my door step and soon I will be buried in self imposed deadlines, and a lot of drive and determination. I got my novel idea all set up and installed in my head and I am ready to go. It isn't perfect. Hell it isn't even going to be good, but it will be mine and it will happen. I've decided that UNLIKE last year I will be making daily updates to the blog so that if anything happens I won't loose everything like I did with my second novel. It is a shame because I really liked it. I am thinking that in the spring sometime I am going to pick up where that left off and turn it into a serial writing project. Then I can update it every year thereafter for NANO or write something else. I love the idea of writing a HUGE chunk ahead of time then just editing things up before publication. I think that suits my style a lot more than just going at it on the fly. It also increases the chance for quality and that is always a good thing in my book. Mmmmyep.

Moving on things have been getting a little bit foggy for me lately. I tested my limits for socializationa and I found them all right where I left them. My eyes degrade slower, my migrains happen less often, I get depressed less frequenly, these are all the benifits I have reaped while getting older. Yet I am still the same old anti social crumogon that I always was. Fortunatly, I have understanding friends.

Moving on. For some reason I started pulling out all sorts of theory books and I have been going through them again. Why? I can't say really. It started because I realized that I couldn't remeber the explanation for the schema Lacan used for understanding metaphores without framing the conversation using Wittgenstein's language games. I figgured it out though. Lacan places a lot of the higher functions of language in the subconscious. The thing is, and I may be wrong about this, is that he doesn't really talk about the subconscious all that much at least not so much as a seperate physical entity. Physical is the wrong word and the right word at the same time isn't it. It is there that the incorporial and the concrete mix together isn't it. On the one hand it is a vast knowable place between my lizard brain that keeps my body functioning, and my higher thought process which are composing this blog post right now. It is the thing that makes me want to do all sorts of things, and it is the place where my dreams come from. In a lot of ways it is the bridge between the mind and the body, the medium where it all takes place. It collects, then categorizes desires and decides which ones will come bubbling up out of the sea of crap that is running around down there. That is interesting and it is worth some further thought at a later time.

Moving on. I both saw and enjoyed A Serbian Film. I am not sure about what this says about me as a human being but WHATEVER. I've seen quite a few extreme horror films, all three of the August Underground movies, two of the three vomit movies, Cannibal...maybe that it what it was called I don't remeber is was based off the german case where the one dude willingly allowed himself to be eaten, and some others. I've enjoyed them all to varying degrees but I mean for the most part once I'd seen them I'd seen them and there is no real reason for me to watch them again. Ever. This isn't true for A Serbian Film. I confess it has to do with the art porn angle. The porn angle is what interested me in the first place and it is what will drive me to watch it again and maybe again afterwards who knows. There is something about porn that makes you wonder sometimes, just how far are people willing to go to allow other people to jerk off. The answer is terrifyingly far. In a couple of ways it is like an EXTREME 8mm but in a lot of other ways it explores more about the actors. At one time I wanted to do a granny trannie interview project. Now I think I am more interested to do an extreme porn interview project. What are these people like? How do they work? What is in it for them? I find it all very interesting. But I find lots of things interesting that reduce other people to tears so who knows.

Anyway just about out of time. Back to work and adventure and all of that.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Agency and You

Agency is one of those things that we all have. I feel silly saying something like that but it seems to be that when acedemics are theorizing about our lives and how we live it, agency is the first thing that gets thrown out of the window. For example, the idea of women wanting to become porn stars, and living satisfactory lives as porn stars is inconvient. So they come up with arguments like the ecconimic nessesity of their lives is such that there is no way they couldn't become porn stars. It is the same thing with video games, the poor and crime rate, or that the media programs our outcomes due to its unending influnce. There are all things I reject because I believe that we as individuals take in, filter, process, and store massive amounts of information. As indivduals, how good we are at working with information genrally reflects on how well they do with life. Autism being an extreme example of a failure to process information in a productive way. I believe that this is part of what a liberal arts education teaches us. I also believe that somewhere along the line we lost the ability to prize our own senses of self, our ability to react, and our ability to control our own outputs.

I want to focus on art for now. This idea started to come to me while I was playing city of heroes. I was happy because the enemies in the story arc dropped the right sort of enhancement I needed for my charecter. This makes getting the right type of gear for him easier. I then thought it would be easy for them to come up with a truely random mission generator that lays out a map, puts the villians of your choice and even comes complete with a set of complications that could randomly show more advanced radio missions. Then I joked to myself I would prolly end up playing the most brilliant story arc ever made and it would all be random, then I realized that 1000 monkies recreating the works of shakespeare on a typewritter, purely by chance, wouldn't have nearly the same worth to me because shakespere sat down and wrote all that shit out on purpose. The monkies were just being monkies.

By creating something then deliberatly putting it on display for others to comment, is an act of self. As a result the thing creation becomes something seperate, it occupies a different internal space once we look at it, and it takes on its own special set of properties.

Oh shit I forgot who said it...I believe it was Hiedegger that came up with the idea that the observation of a phenomena inherently changes the phenomena.

Lets get some examples to work with:

Recently someone entered into an art exhibit a 1tb hard drive full of pirated materials. Along with the hard drive was a list of everything that was supposedly on it.

The cut ups method.

Hitler's art.

I don't have time to work with these now but each of these three examples show off a very different aspect of the thing I am talking about.

Yep I am going to go wash dishes instead of doing this. I hope everoyne is happy.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Yay Writting Time!

Woop woop! Okay so NOW I will do the comic book roundup I mean to do like one to two weeks ago. So here we go!

Hickman's Future Project!- After reading the nightly news Hickman rockted up onto the pedastle of being one of my favorite comic book writters working in the indusry ever. When he got picked up by Marvel though I started to worry. Marvel has a tendency to misuse some of its talent. Jason Arron is mostly languishing under the thumb of marvel and Matt Fraction hasn't really produced anything that I've found to be paticularly interesting. So I worried about Hickman because his voice was to vital, bright, and interesting to have him pushing the X-men around their shitty island or something like that. Oh and David Lampram there is a man who needs to write so much more and he needs to write so much less for Marvel. ANYWAY so I was worried. Then the first Fantastic 4 Dark Reign trade came out and I was relived. He got the fantastic 4. They were fun, high science fiction, high concept, people who ran around and did awesome things. The art direction ranged from great to downright creative and the whole book sang with a vibrant energy. Hell even watching their kids fend off Norman Osbourn was a mighty treat.

So with a smile on my face and excitment in my heart I waited paciently for the next trade. Now for whatever reason none of the local stores opted to carry his run of FF. To make matters worse I forgot to look the damn things up. I actually assumed he wasn't writting the FF anymore. I heard rumblings of the human torch dieing and lets face it unless you are playing Marvel Ultimate Alliance the human torch is pretty annoying. Then a shiny new Trade was on the shelf in eye catching white. The fantastic four had been reborn as the future foundation and some monies later I am delighted by this change in events.

Turning the comic over in my head I realize that I don't have much to say about it other than I am excited to read more of it. Spiderman is on the team now but instead of being a smart ass wanker who bitches about how shitty his life is all the time he instead is taking his rightful place as one of the marvel universes geniuses. A lot of people forget that Parker posseses genius level intelegence and this is a god damn shame. So I am glad they are playing that aspect of his personality up more rather than his pointlessly turbulant social life. On that note the family aspect of the fantastic four is being toned down and replaced with more a adventure science fiction fun thing. I like it. I was going to do a long thing where I compare it to planetary and all of those observations are valid but I would have to sit here and do lots and lots of plot summary and I don't feel like it so I am moving on.

The Anihilators! Now this was a fun little comic! It is the continuation of the SPACE epic that is being written by Abbet and Landing. After the Thanos imperative passed we now have time to take a break and relax for a bit which is nice. Space was getting more than a little bit strained let me tell you. The Annihilators is the new series that is filling the void left behind by Nova and Gaurdians of the Galaxy, and the mega event books. Urisingly it actually manages to fill all three of these roles simultaneously which is pretty freakin awesome. The team consists of all the space badasses put together in one place to deal with whatever major threat there is to deal with. Essentially they are the new Gaurdians of the Galaxy except they are all badasses. They are also most approriatly named the Team with to Many Hammers. The book itself is light hearted, fun, and it kicks more ass than anyone could ask for. Not a whole lot more needs to be said on it other than hooray.

I would like to take this moment and the next fifteen minutes to point something out though. The Annhilators isn't a great comic. By that I mean I will not stand shoulder to shoulder with Maus, Watchmen, Joker, or any of the other giants of the medium. No but it will stand shoulder to shoulder with Black Ring (something else I read but don't have time to write about), Warren Ellie's ThunderBolts, and oh I dunno Old Man Logan. That's a good one. There is the war over style over substance and this book along with the others I named definietly fit under that category. However, what these books do is elevate the idea of style over substance rather than make it a criminal "guilty pleasure" sort of thing. This is an argument that happens most often with movies but I feel that it is just as, if not more applicable, here. There is nothing inherently wrong with will crafted pieces of pure entertainment. It is when we start getting into poorly crafted pieces of entertainment that things start to become troublesome. Where all bets are placed on being shocking, or EXTREME like in KickAss or Nemisis. Or when you try to provide to much wide screen action without enough setting like in Secret Invasion. A large part of this argument is subjective. I recognize this. I also recognize that as a result there will be no definitive end to this argument. Still there if I am going to consume something that is going to be more style than substance than I want some seriously high quality style. Just because it is superficially entertaining doesn't mean it has to be deficient in things like plot, character development, or good things.


Also at some time in the future I am going to make this exact same argument except all my examples will be movies. Transformers is going to be one of those things I am going to shit ALL over.

Yay Writting Time!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Onwards and Upwards

I started reading Ready Player One last night, the book is fantasic and it kind of makes me want to punch Game of Thrones in the face. I could of been reading this the whole time. Now I liked the first book but the second book started to piss me off. First of all there was what happened to Stannis, or rather what might of happened to Stannis. The fact is that we don't know. One page Kings Landing is under attack, Tyrion is being a bad ass, and fun things are happening all over, and then it just ends litterally with no rhyme. Like the army just stopped and everyone just shrugged their shoulders and went, "who gives a fuck Stannis is prolly dead hooray" This is the centeral conflict of the novel and its resolution happened off screen which is pretty fucking annoying.

Then there is Rob. What is Rob doing? Who knows! Apparently Rob is a tired of his annoying psychotic mother who is annoying and psychotic. However, UNLIKE the reader we can't leave Catelyn behind so we keep having to read her complain about how war is happening WHEN SHE STARTED IT. Every time they try to portray her as a sympathetic character I want to punch the writer in the face. I mean seriously her son who is off doing more interesting things left her behind because she is annoying so why can't we leave her behind too.

Then there is the fall of Winterfell due to the Dreadfort betrayal. Who cares. Like literally who cares. It is Winterfell the closest thing to it is THE WALL. It is a podunk castle town in the middle of nowhere with no real resources or stratigic value. Hell even Asha wondered what the hell Theon was doing there because there was no reason to hold it or use it. I don't even know why the Dreadfort people want it but I also don't care. It is so far removed from the Iron Throne and the main action of the book that what happens there really doesn't matter. The big deal behind it is that Rob is going to have to come home. So basically almost 200 pages of the second book got taken up so that in the third book a charecter who has been running around off screen has to come home. But he will still be off screen cause who the hell knows where Bran is going.

So most of the book is about nothing. Notice I haven't complained Daenaries. This is because her chapters were fun and interesting. She did things and they were neat. Her chapters were colorful and fun. John Snow also spent most book in the middle of nowhere and hey his stuff was interesting. But Bran and Catelyn were just these massive lode stones that did nothing to progress anything. They basically sat around while things happened around them progressing nothing, and being near nothing.

I enjoyed the second book and I plan on finishing the series but I am not happy with most of the book's structure. Also now that I am reading Ready Player One and Murakami has written a new book I might end up revsing that statement after awhile. We'll see.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Game of Thrones Card game!

I was going to fiddle with my Game of Thrones Greyjoy deck for a bit but I decided to hold off for a bit and do some writing instead. I do this for no paticular reason other than the fact that I have a wide variety of things to say and only a half hour to say them in. Also I got bar-b-q sauce all over the table and I don't want to get my cards dirty.
Since I am on the subject, I want to make a Greyjoy?Maegister deck. I think that the potential for rediculousness is high and that a lot of fun can be had with the combination. As it stands now my Greyjoy deck is pretty scary but that is more due to my plot deck than my actual deck. My plot deck is capable of getting a charecter I need out of the deck, stagnating the board for two turns while I run rampant all over the place, and then shutting down the other players ability to hurt me before I bring it on home with Rise of the Kraken. Rise of the Kraken can pretty much gaurentee me 4 power. It can get my 8 power if I have Assult of the Kraken which allows me a second power attack, another 2 power if I have superior claim lying around, and 2-4 power from military and intrigue challenges. My most recent game allowed me to gain over 8 power in one turn which was terrifying. It was a pretty close game too, the next turn would of seen a board wipe and that would of been close to game. So in general I am really liking my Greyjoy deck and while I want to very much make a Maegister deck I am thinking I am going to pick up the packs with all the raiders in them instead. The raiders have intimidate for the most part and that will make things interesting. I am also considering running one of two Agendas, one is that I only get power through military attacks and the other allows me to make two power attacks a turn while taking away my ability to do intruigue challanges.

Both choices appeal to me for different reasons. The power one is nice because I wouldn't have to change to much in my current deck. I'd get a couple of more raiders with their intimidate and just run people over with one or two charecters at a time, especially if Wex is out then there just isn't anything the other person can do about anything.

The military option is a little different. First of all I'd have to radically alter my plot deck because of Rise of the Kraken would be useless. Actually... it would still get me the same power wouldn't it? Still its usefulness is greatly curtailed. The raiders would still stay and I would most certainly get this one card that has 8 power and lets you discard 8 cards from the top of every player's deck. That is a nasty card. There is also a card that just lets me cap a charecter if I win a challange.

Anyway off I go

Saturday, October 8, 2011

This instead!

So I was planning on mucking about with my Greyjoy deck today after I finnished my lunch but having failed to do any writing yesterday I feel that today is the day to get some of it done. And so here I am. Hooray! It is unfortunate how an awkward start can throw off your whole day. I woke up with my head pounding. I mean it was some bloody murder. Part sinus, part migraine, all mean. I had planned to go out to thrift stores, get my oil changed, and then do some writing at books a million. I even made sure I needed to go out by not buying any food on thursday. However, as I drove down to publix I quickly realized that it wasn't going to happen. Even after some excedrine and some caffeine I was still not quite myself. So I decided to sit in books a million for a bit. If I felt better I could write, and while I was waiting to feel better I could read.

I'll do the comic book roundup some other time though, tomorrow mayhaps. Today I am kinda drifting around inside my head with no real plans.

I helped build three different streets in glitch, and I got to say that is a helluva lot of fun. It is almost enough to make me consider moving out of Grottle Medows and closer to unexplored territories. Almost. THe problem with that is that I am so close to everything I need where I live. I can easily gather gas, spices, bubbles, barnacles, all types of rocks, and eggs. Moving means I am going to give up, at the minimum gas, spices, and barnacles and I am not sure if I am cool with that. Though once I learn teleportation i am sure the whole thing will start to solve itself.

On Thursday I realized that the golden age of gaming had come to an end for me and that's sad. It used to be that we gamed on thursday, then we could meet at tyson's house to game some other day of the week, and on a third day corey and I could play something. Now we still have thursday, but now we have to play at Jame's house which is far out of the way for everyone. Travonta's house is potentially open to us but he neighbors pretty much make it a deal breaker. Tyson didn't care about his neighbors. And that is that.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Let the Newness Begin!

So I had a very hard time sleeping last night and now I am very very tired. In fact I've had a hard time sleeping all week. So I am getting just a little bit more and more out of it. Today has a risk of being a total failure, but I think I am loading tonight so it might work out. Who knows we will see when Sasha gets here.

Work is getting to be pretty grand.

So what to write about? LORD OF THE RINGS!

Huzzah! I touched upon it briefly but I think I want to talk about it a little bit more. One of the major things I realized the last time we played together is that card draw is one of the most powerful abilities in the game. The big thing I've realized is that your resource production is fixed. You will pretty much never earn more than three resources a turn unless you pull out the Steward of Gondor or the neutral mage that helps you pay for animals. Other than that alternative sources of resource generation, more or less, don't exist. This is actually a huge deal which I have under estimated time and time again. Cards that cost two or three resources seem and feel cheap but they actually cost a fortune. In order to put out the 5 cost unique eagle you need to essentially not play any tactics cards for 2.5 turns. That is a long time to not play cards in this game and while the 5 cost eagle is worth every penny I got to say that we need some better way of getting him there.

This brings me back to the power of card draw. During our three player game we had lots of more resources to work with which is what helped make Carrock all the easier. The big thing though was the fact that the third player had a lot of card draw in his deck, including a hero you could exhaust to get yourself a new card and lots of second breakfasts. These helped to keep our hands flush with options helping to make sure we get our better cards into play.

The next chapter pack is coming in the mail tomarowish which is exciting to me. I'll be getting myself some more eagles which will make the neutral eagle based mage from the last pack a little bit more useful. Eagles themselves are kinda expensive but they are also amazing so I guess that balances out. Also there is something cool about having a deck full of eagles. As a result it looks like I will be tearing apart my decks and rebuilding them up again. One of the main problems I am having with the deck building is that green makes for a TERRIBLE off color. Most of their cards are very expensive, their best allies are unique, and they are so very very vital. The three main box set green heroes all have stats that range from amazing to absoluetly amazing and they all have exhaust abilities which you always want to use but you can't because you are to busy using their stats and what not for questing or what have you. Oh yeah and they all have a threat level of 2 billion or something rediculous like that.

I am thinking of just biting the bullet and making a tactics/leadership deck. That deck would be able to absolutly murderface anything it came across. Meanwhile the lore/spirt deck could do all the nessisary questy things. Best of all is that the green heroes have a good enough defense that they should be able to hold their own until I can save them. I know I want it to be a tactics heavy deck because leadership has cheap easy to use cards but for the spirit/lore deck I am uncertain. I am thinking Lore heavy and I'll just rely on gandalf more to keep threat down than the couple of lore cards.

Looks like I'll do the sorting tonight while I am half asleep. Okay back to work.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Now 300

I was midway though my 300th post on friday when I realized that I wanted what I was doing to be good and I did not have the materials ready to make it good. Essentially I was writing about the difficulty in engaging people in relavent discourse I was using the Tea Party as a frame and internet comments as an example. I had some good articles with some interesting comments but I lost them. So...nuts. I was trying get all the stuff together but it was taking to long and I was getting hungry and then... well that was the end of that. I had the draft but I ended up scrapping it. I'll write it someday only this time I will keep much better track of articles with comments that suit my needs.

The idea behind it is that people try to talk, but they don't really. They just spout their beliefs over and over again with no intention of being convinced or reasoned with. In fact the whole idea behind the tea party is a distinct lack of ambiguity. These are the facts and anything that contradicts the facts becomes meaningless. I can say that but providing some examples to show just how deep this sort of thing goes. They attack the world with an almost religious fervor. Sadly most of these people are lower middle, to middle class. This means that is actually takes quite a bit to affect them ecconmically whereas the poor have a much more difficult time absorbing economic fluctuations. So there is that.

Still these people need to be talked to. And just because it is hard doesn't mean that it shouldn't be done. I just need to figure out a way to do it.

In other news just as a laugh I decided to apply the outer church/politics stuff I've written to the idea of the tea party movement. It worked amazingly well, almost like they were made for each other. It also goes a long way to undoing some of the myth behind the media being a primary force of culture. Or rather, while the media is a factor, the people around us play a far greater role in how we interact with the world. In fact it is the people around us that help determine what media we consume not the other way around. The tea party makes for an excelent outer church and I plan on formally attacking this subject maybe on thursday or friday.

We tried to play fiasco on saturday but we just plain old got started to late which is a shame. We had a very promising setup that would more than likely go some interesting places. Oh well.

We did play some lord of the rings and I got to try out The Massing of Osgilath. We lasted two game turns. Jesus fuck. We did however beat Carrock, however for once the quest deck didn't do every single fucking thing in its power to destroy us. I mean seriously both of the decks I made are more than able to get through the first phase without us having 30+ threat. I dunno it never goes that well when there are just two of us playing. We always flip over two brownlands or something retarded like that.

I saw 50/50 which is pretty much the best movie of all time forever. See it or I will no longer see you.

And that is my life. I've never really lived a turbulent life, preferring solitude to drama, but maybe I could do with a little bit more action. A friend of mine started a blog recently, Hi Jessica! She made the announcement by saying, "If you wanna know what is happening in my life you can read this". It is strange because I've said the same thing to so many other people it felt weird having it said to me. Weird isn't bad. It actually caused me to laugh. Today thought it made me think. I got the depression. Not right now but it can happen pretty much at any moment. Actually, to be honest I am at a bit of a low but it is nothing really to get riled up about and it is on its way out or something like that.

I've been reading A Game of Thrones, I am mid way through the second book and I plan on getting further in it tonight, if only so I can find out why Tyrion's chain is all about.

But yeah. I am not in a relationship. I don't even have any prospects for relationship status. This isn't me crying or going, "boohoo Imma so lonely". Nope. In fact I have made zero effort in trying to rectify that situation. But you know not a whole lot goes on in my life. I am looking fowards to the frantic fun times of national novel writing month. I am looking forwards to thursday. I like hanging out with my friends. I do it often enough so that happy but not often that I feel choked...