Saturday, February 21, 2009

At last.

It took a surf and turf and three beers at the AB Hotel to get up the courage, but it finally happened.

I bought a second-hand softcover trade of Watchmen.

With the film coming out and everyone reiterating how it's one of the greatest books of all time, I figure I need to have a better opinion than "I got it from the library and disliked it so much I skipped to the end, then returned it early."

So now I have it.

Has this happened to anyone else?

Fact: I read the Narnia books in the correct order, but was told it was the WRONG order by everyone I knew. I knew it was:
1 The Magician's Nephew
2 The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
3 The Horse and His Boy
4 Prince Caspian
5 The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
6 The Silver Chair
7 The Last Battle
This was the order they were in when I found them in the tiny elementary school library of McAdam Avenue Elementary School. All my friend and even some teachers told me that LW&W was first, and I would agree, but know in my heart they were wrong. Of, course, I know now that there is dispute over publication order versus chronological order (see the Wiki). When the film came out, with all of its CGI "glory", I had the urge to reread the series, as it had completely lost me in the end, with its chucking the story in favor of ham-fisted religious metaphor (the ape, the donkey, and the doorway). Also, I read the Neil Gaiman short story "The Problem of Susan" which disturbed the hell out of me.

Fact: When I read the Dark Is Rising series, I skipped the second book, The Dark Is Rising, which introduced the hero character of Will Stanton. In fact, one of my friends had only read that book, and so when he was explaining it to me, we suddenly caught on that it was the same series. As I skipped the intro of Our Hero, when he shows up, I though "Who's this jumped-up kid and why should I care?" I bring it up because I've rented-and-iPodded the Adaptation Decay that is The Seeker: The Dark is Rising (which tries too hard to be Harry Potter and my GOD must they have gotten a sponsorship from a flat-screen TV company because there is one in nearly every scene).

Fact: Now that I've gone from my 80 gig iPod Video to my 32 gig iPod touch, the video quality and sound are leaps and bounds better, but the music playback doesn't have the volume, depth or oomph that it does on the Video. Strange.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Autonoumous Paintball Sentry Gun

I wonder how many times this thing could shoot Ted in the mouth.

Haiku Saturday

Cert Four Assignments
With their endless navel-gaze
Make me want to cry.

Tanja posts way more
On her blog than I do on
Mine in the last month

Think you’re good at the
Warhawk Demo? Buy the game.
Blown to smithereens.

It's 12:30 and
Apart from one done before
I've finished no work.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Demos and Trials

Last night we had some people over for one of our dinner/movie marathon nights. The theme this time was Hellboy and tacos. I made beef tacos, chipotle roast pork tacos, and chicken fajitas. Booze flowed freely. We warmed up with the Predator Rifftrax and then rolled on to both Hellboy movies, the second in Blu-ray (whose audio we had trouble controlling; the dialogue was quiet, but the music and effects were loud enough to shake the walls!). We all got very sleepy as the night moved on. I totally blame the food. Fun was had by all.

So this morning, Tanja goes up to the mountains to see her ma, and I get a bit of a lie-in (and checking of my Twitter feed from bed, hee). I decided after a morning of updating album art on iTunes (yes, I'm that kind of user) I'll check out the demos I downloaded for my PS3. So, my thoughts, in my patented bullet-point-style:

[-]Bioshock: Adored the story and the look and the steam-punk feel of the game, but hated, HATED the game play. I ended up using all my special weapon energy just trying to stun someone or all my bullets trying to get a headshot with the revolver to the point where I fall back on the basic wrench weapon 9 times out of 10. It does however, make a satisfying *thwack* when you wallop someone. And like I twittered, wrench don't run out. I might see if Tommy or someone has this for me to borrow.

[-]Kane & Lynch: Dead Men: third-person shooters have never been my forte, but this one lost my interest immediately by not letting me invert the y-axis, so i couldn't FIND the enemies, let alone hit them. Oh, and the squad AI? Boneheaded. NEXT!

[-]Soul Caliber 4: Very pretty! However, as I explained to Ted yesterday, I haven't enjoyed buying a fighting game since Mortal Kombat 2. Possibly because I don't play much versus, so it's just me bashing my head against the single-player mode. This was the problem I had when I (briefly) owned Virtua Fighter 4. Might rent this (along with DC vs MK) but would never buy.

[-]Lemmings: 2-d Lemmings! But it's so hard to play without a mouse and I'm not buying one just for this.

[-]Timeshift: ZOMG did I love this. It's a shooter, but you have the ability to stop, slow, and reverse time. Think Prince of Persia with guns. You can take the gun out of someone's have, move behind him, and see him realise what's happened before you cap him. Also, the guns are great, in particular, the sniper-crossbow, which fires glowing arrows that explode after a 1-second delay. So you get to see the guy react before he explodes into a pinkish mist. All the explosions look shiny in the slow-mo as well. I was shocked Gamespot gave it so low a rating (6.5!) when it's one of those rare shooter that I actually have fun playing. Definietly looking for the full version.

[-]Warhawk: See previous entry. I've got the full version winging its way to me now, but I could have happily played the demo forever.

[-]Wipeout HD: Gorgeous-looking and smooth-as, and I was a HUGe fan of Wipeout on the Saturn, but I just can't seem to get into this. Also, Ted is better than me at this/all video games ever.

[-]Dead Space: Creepy, scary look, caused a funny aneurysm moment when I "killed" something, only to have it cut me in half as I walked past its "corpse". Ted response: "Yeah, those'll do that." Not sure I could stand a whole game of it, though.

[-]Lego Batman: Cute, funny, like the look of it, but ugh, jump puzzles. Freakin' jump puzzles. Never mind. And only 1 punch and 1 throw button? That's it for combat?

[-]Pixeljunk: Eden: Very wierd, and seemingly simple game. Not sure if it's hooked me.

[-]Killzone 2: Blah. Boring shooter.Guns are so "accurate" that YOU have to be a staggeringly good shot to hit ANYTHING. Although Brammall at work just thinks I don't like it because I suck at it.

Oh, and without warning, Firefox has gone back to have the "open background tab" option, and opening a new tab when I click a link and write in an address. Thank Moby.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Falling behind

Ack! I've been meaning to update this thing for the last week. First I wanted to blog about the terrible morning I had, then about how I tend to subconsciously boobytrap myself when I'm stressed, causing me to try to grab things, misjudge, and knock other things over, stressing me more. Then after a few days I still wanted to blog about the morning from hell and was starting to wonder why I wanted to blog about that so much. Then I thought about blogging about how I tend to hang onto bad experiences, turning them over and over in my head. But I didn't.

So now I'm blogging about how I didn't blog about all that.

The fires in Victoria are terrible beyond belief, and watching the newscasters hovering like vultures waiting for someone to step out of the wreckage to say how it feels to have all your belongings burnt to a crisp makes me a bit sick. On the plus side, I found a bottle of Gold Wasser which tastes lovely and will allow me to make Duck and Covers.