Latest Happenings and Musings:
15 Days. I can’t…wow, has it been 15 days since this month began? Since this YEAR began? So much has happened. So much time has passed… You’ll have to excuse the tired look. At least, if this was a Vlog you would have to. As such, you only can really hear the exhaustion in my typed words. Typed words which are about as cold and uncaring for emotions as you can get but hey, its the best I’ve got to work with. Speaking of Vlogs, I’ve contemplated doing one of my own. In some ways, its a lot easier than typing out hundreds of words for hours on end. But I’ve never enjoyed watching other people’s Vlogs. As such, I’ve always figured that if I don’t enjoy watching them, why should I create them? Anyway, random train of thought.
So what the heck happened Tim. I know, the 15 days plus the 10 days I took off in December for a Vacation is a pretty unacceptable break for me. Especially when it comes to this blog. Well, a terrible event happened. My vacation was going well enough though and I was glad to be back at home. For a short while anyway. I got plenty of nice gifts including a new pair of Bose mid-range headphones, cleaned headlights on my car, clothes, money and lots of other things. I got some really cool gifts this year. After that, I spent some time spent traveling to meet the various members of the family. Been doing a lot of driving around more than I usually do for the past couple of weeks. I arrived back to Eugene on the 31st before the drunken parties started up and I made a vow to start out the New Year on a strong foot and make it my year. Unfortunately, I opened the door to the new year and fell off the emotional cliff. 100 feet down. Into a solid concrete floor. At least, that’s what it felt like on January 1st, 2013…
I was playing Darksiders when I got the call. The call from my Mom telling me that my father had passed away suddenly. I was…shocked. I just…my Dad had been in the best health of his life and there was nothing to indicate anything was wrong with him. My mother and brother had found him in the back yard just… He had been mowing the lawn that morning and I guess he was going to move a ladder when it happened. The Dr at the hospital had told them that there was nothing they could have done to prevent it. It was sudden and quick for a heart attack. I guess its a small comfort that he went quickly, which is how he had wanted to go. I don’t have the words to talk about this much more than the details of what happened right now. Maybe I’ll write something more later down the road. Maybe. Probably. Most likely.
So I immediately got a ride back home the following day to help out as best I could. I helped with flowers, the service details and whatever else I could. It was just….I didn’t expect to do anything like this for…my own dad, not yet anyway. Friends were constantly visiting over the next couple of days. I could only stay for a couple days as my brother (aka ride) had to return to Eugene to deal with rent. I also had to return to deal with college and work as I couldn’t skip a week of school. It gets really difficult to catch up on what you miss in college, especially when you miss a week. Plus, I needed to work to pull in a paycheck. After all, my Dad was part of my financial support and now its…gone. The service was this past weekend and is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do. It went well though. My brothers and I stood at the front podium of the church’s sanctuary to give our thoughts on our Dad. The sanctuary was full. So many people showed up for it and…that left me kind of wowed. My Dad..well…he had left an impact on the community. Its only now that I can really appreciate what he had done…and…I’m going to miss him. The amount of support we’ve gotten from friends has been overwhelming. Which means a lot to us. We’ll make it through this. Just a lot of stuff to be done.
My emotional state has been unstable for the past couple of weeks. Unsurprising, I know. Its only today that I’ve felt up to writing for the blog again. So here I am. Writing again. It seems like January is a sucktastic month for a lot of other people too. I’ve had two friends of mine crash their cars, one get his house broken into, some friends are having problems and…its just been a very crappy start to 2013. I really hope it turns around soon. I’m behind on all my other projects due to all this time off unfortunately. But its given me time to think. Changes are coming to this blog and my other projects. School is coming along well enough so that’s something I’m going to try and keep the personal musings on a Monday/Wednesday/Friday/Saturday schedule but I’m not promising anything. Let’s just take this one day at a time.
Tech and Gaming News To Read:
So changes are coming to the Personal Musings. Again, I know. Mostly I’m trying to make these posts better. I think that Latest Happenings and Tech/Gaming news sections are well done and I really like the format. The only major change I’m making to tech/gaming news is anything to do with game/app update news. I’ll be cutting down on how often I talk about app/game updates unless their significant and worth more than a few lines to talk about. I don’t think people find that kind of news interesting and frankly, its just lazy for me to talk about anyway. So I’m going to try and talk about more meatier subjects (such as the one I’m about to talk about) from now on. Hopefully this will be more enjoyable to read as well.
Well, you know me. I really hate hypocrisy. So its not hard to imagine I might have blown a fuse when I heard about this little gem of a story about the NRA’s new iOS gun app game. Before I start, I might as well state that I am pro-gun and that my basis for that has nothing to do with the NRA. I believe that Americans should have the right to bear arms. So there you go. Anyway, back to the story. The NRA stood in front of the United States Congress and said a lot of things in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shooting. Some things I agreed with, others I didn’t. One major thing I didn’t agree with was their statement about the videogame industry, about it being “a callous, corrupt, and corrupting shadow industry that sells and sows violence against >its< own people”. This angered quite a few people in the videogame industry as you might imagine. Anyway, after this statement was said and some time passed, many gamers on the iOS store were suddenly surprised to see a game called “NRA: Practice Range”. A shooting range simulator for Apple’s mobile devices officially licensed by the NRA. Its free with in-app purchases. I am not linking to it as I do not wish to support their app, but you can search the app store to find it.
While it may be a terrible game and while it may have nothing to do with shooting people, that isn’t the point of my beef with the NRA. My problem is that the NRA stood in front of the nation, declared videogames to be the worst industry in the world and then turned around and created a product in the same industry they called shady and corrupt. Talk about a bunch of hypocrisy. It was all designed to throw videogames under the bus as far as my opinion is concerned and the NRA should not be allowed to get away with this without some sort of (political) flak for it. I could at least respect the NRA for stating their opinion but to say what they did and then pull this….well, it just pisses me off. At the end of the day, I don’t think we should be pointing fingers at guns or “violent” videogames. Rather, we should be trying to fix what is causing people to go out and shoot up schools like they are. I don’t think it has anything to do with guns but people seeking attention or just being mentally disturbed. But taking a look at what actually causes these events would be too difficult to figure out so we take the easy road. And we punish the law-abiders for what the criminals do. Politics. Its great. Not. Anyway, there you go. My thoughts on this mess.
Audio of Note:
Until further notice, I won’t be listening/sharing podcasts in this section. I’ve been too busy with other things to keep up on podcasts and I’ve had to drop listening to them for that reason. Maybe when I’m out of college or something they’ll see a return to the blog. So that also means I’m also stopping Podcast reviews until further notice. I think I was going to try and tweak the format but I don’t have the time. So for now, you’ll only see music being shared here. As always, I’m going to keep trying to expand what I share here.
I don’t know what Blake was thinking when he made this song, but all I can think after hearing it is that I need an adult in the room. Its an amusing song so check it out:
Audien has a very intriguing electronic/atmospheric song you should check out:
This OCremix song is REALLY good. Has a great beat and song to it, inspired by the original Super Smash Bros.
Photos To See:
I have to ask. Does anyone actually enjoy looking at the photos I share here? Looking back, I was basically phoning it in in the last couple of personal musings. If you noticed I was sharing the same cat/dog multiple times, its because I was. So I’m really curious if anyone would actually miss this section being cut or not. I’m going to share a few photos here just to remind you of what I do share here and if you want to see more of that, PLEASE let me know. Facebook comment, WordPress comment, doesn’t matter. If no one likes this section, then I’ll cut it. Otherwise, if it stays, I will try and improve what I share here. Not sure how, but I think getting away from Instagram will be the way to go. So here you go, some photos to enjoy.
Cat enjoying some “Yoga” apparently
Dunno why cats enjoy boxes so much, but my family’s does.
Interesting Videos To Watch:
This section is pretty good but I’m going to try and have a few more thoughts on the videos I share here from now on. Let me know if you have any feedback about it.
Jesse Cox & Josh Mattingly take a look at the Greenlight game: “Grimind”. A 2D horror platformer that is…interesting enough with plenty of Limbo-inspired mechanics. However, I don’t think the art or the game itself do enough to really make it a stand-out title. There are a lot of good games out there and this game just doesn’t do anything that interests me. I’d much rather play Limbo again.
Moonshine Fox is back with a new Dwarf Fortress series called “Wintercrypts”. He’s using a different graphic set, is letting us actually see this mythical program known as “Dwarf Therapist” and is bringing his usual fail to the game. Hehe. Check it out!
So I’m back for the forseeable future. Thanks for reading and thank you for making December/2012 as successful as it was. (2nd highest read month of 2012, after all the work I did, that was VERY appreciated) Its given me the strength to keep pushing forward. Until next time indeed!…