I read something beautiful this afternoon that I wanted to link, but wasn’t sure how to provide a context that is true to my thoughts. I could pass it off with a glib, “This is why I don’t want to have kids,” but that would be shallow and untrue and completely unfair to the writer, who did a beautiful job in her post.
I could also go into a sappy, commiserating commentary, but I’m just not qualified. Her situation is not one I’ve ever found myself in, and I can only imagine the depressing horrors of the rollercoaster of her situation. I can feel for her, but I can’t really sympathize because I just haven’t been there.
So what I will say is that it made me think of my mother. Because I don’t know how frequently, if ever, she has had that good type of day since Ali has been born, if not for a while before. I’m not at all sure that she has had the wonderful type of day that leaves her feeling comfortable with herself, where she isn’t struggling to get through the day until she can (possibly, and frequently not) get a break when the Old Man gets home. Maybe things are better and have improved since I was living with them, but I do worry. During my tenure, if you will, she was only appreciated in a very abstract “Of course we appreciate her–she does everything around the house” kind of way, with no attempts to actually improve her situation. Or rather, no attempts to provide some less stressful choices for her to take.
That makes me very pissed at myself, and the choices I’ve made these past five years. I should be able to surmount my dislike of children in general and Ali in particular for the sake of my mother. It’s like the interest in world news: what my father has been attempting to hammer into me for the past five years, I finally learn with the help of a good feed reader. Le sigh.
I’m fighting with Visual C++ 6.0 and working on this app for Dr. M that is requiring, essentially, translation from old Borland classes to STL equivalents that I myself am not familiar with, since we used proprietary Advanced Placement classes in high school. I know, though, that with enough time and persistence, I can figure out the GUI and event managers in Visual C++ and get this thing running again. Why Microsoft couldn’t make this shit as simple as it is in Visual Basic, I don’t know. Probably since the code will always be the most important aspect for any C++ coder, while GUI design always came first when we did VB.
So that’s fun. These types of puzzles I like.
I had very little interaction with Bridget this morning, which also got my day off to a good start. That sounds bad, but things are at the point now where every conversation becomes an opportunity for both of us to get in as many snide snipe-y attacks as we can, and it’s just damn annoying, although I’m being just as vicious as she is. Add on to that her new tendency to interrupt whatever I’m saying with “Huh?” (a major pet peeve of mine) and her childish overcompensation for my one-time request for the air to be turned down a little by keeping the air off and the window open on windless days, and the less we see each other, the better. At least she’s suffering from that last more than I am, since I can always leave and do work in the Thorn office. But she’s burning even me out at night, making it difficult to sleep.
So a lack of that, combined with a pleasantly social breakfast, started my day well.
Apparently my review of Saturday’s show was a way harsher than I intended. Even he said something to Bob (who is both the president of Film Club and the one editing the page on which the review will reside) to the order of “Damn, you guys must have sucked.” Bob gave me hurtful looks and told me, “If this is your opinion, I’ll run it, of course, but…” Oops. Definitely not my intention, because I really did like the show.
So, here’s a revised draft that didn’t detract from my meaning and didn’t make Bob want to cry. I haven’t put in all the actors’ names, but I don’t have the program with me, so alas.
This is the second time one of my editors has twisted my arm into writing a review due to my unique perspective. The first time was my non-Judeo-Christian status and spiritual distance from the events of “The Passion”. This time it’s because I have absolutely nothing to do with either the Film Club or the Drama Club. Such a person is rare on the Thorn staff.
Bob twisted my arm to get me to write a review on a Film Club and Drama Club joint showing this weekend. “Just 500 words,” he said.
When have I ever obeyed a word count without cramping my message? That damned thing came out to be nearly 800 words when I finished.
And so I present, completely unedited by third parties for grammar and content (which is unbalanced between the clubs’ events), a review of “An Evening of One Acts”. Because what’s a blog if not an archive for mindless ramblings?
This is the second time one of my editors has twisted my arm into writing a review due to my unique perspective. The first time was my non-Judeo-Christian status and spiritual distance from the events of The Passion. This time it’s because I have absolutely nothing to do with either the Film Club or the Drama Club. Such a person is rare on the Thorn staff.
So I aided in giving an interview to our school’s president this afternoon on behalf of the Thorn. I’ve been working on this tribute to Dr. H, but had yet to actually meet the man. Bob, Brandon (the Opinions Ed. of the paper), and I went to his house with film equipment and taped about an hour and a half of interview on everything from his fight to bring coeducation to Rose (articles that me and another writer are working on) to things students indicated they wanted to know in a survey we sent around. Such as whether he wears boxers or briefs. Ugh.
At any rate, Dr. H is an interesting guy. Very… sharp. I was the only one of the three of us we hadn’t met, and he very clearly (but not in a dirty manner) sized me up the entire time I was there. Every time I turned around, his eyes were on me, measuring my reactions, my competence, my comfort level, everything. It’s very easy to underestimate him–he’s elderly, suffered a stroke, talks softly, and has a “sweet old man” persona that has thoroughly fooled Bridget, and, to some extent, Bob. But he watches. I hate that type of scrutiny, so I’m very aware of when I’m being subjected to it. Which is damned hypocritical of me, since I totally love to give that type of scrutiny. I should get over that–I’m aware enough of my own body language and (less so) speech patterns to be able to hold my own against that type of watchfulness, and there was no need to let him think I was some hyper-shy, soft-spoken and subservient computer science geek.
As we were leaving, Dr. H pulled a classic move of his as asked if Bob and I were going to dinner before we went to work tonight. Bob’s a doofus for not catching on to where this was going, but I let him shrug it off and answer it as though it were a casual request. He finally got direct and asked if we were dating, but made it friendly by joking that maybe this was what Bob thought of as a date. Tee hee, uh, no. Dr. H is always trying to hook students up, apparently.
So we’ve been working on Exploit: Zero Day for a couple of years now, but I haven’t talked nearly enough about it here. It’s a web-based cyberthriller puzzle game where you play as a hacktivist, uncovering and battling against oppression and exploitation.
*innocent whistle* Totally not the sort of game I’d want to make or play, no…
It’s been in closed alpha for a while, but we’re ready to offer a prelude season of paid story: “Headless Swarm”. For details on the plotline and how it relates to the continued free alpha access, check out the announcement blog post over at FPG.
I visited uptown Charlotte tonight, amidst the current protests and unrest after Keith Scott’s death. My friend and I had a few tidbits of info on where people were meeting, but nothing concrete, so we wandered along several streets.
In areas where people weren’t protesting, businesses were closed, and the streets were unusually silent for 20:30 on a Friday night. Troops stood in clumps of three on corners, waving or saying hello when you passed them. The occasional humvee or police SUV drove by.
Things were more lively at the Omni Hotel, where folks had covered the sidewalk in chalk. There were lots of media there: it was clearly an “allowed”, acceptable, media-consumable gathering. I’d maybe characterize it as a space for quieter expression of grief, although it was criticized by another gathering as essentially being for the white people. The writings were names of people killed and sayings that many of us are familiar with: “hands up don’t shoot”, “when will we have justice?”, etc. Religious figures were around, praying with people.
Further down Trade St., past the bus station, a group had gathered in front of some government building. My friend and I stayed there for a while. They were chanting “I am my brother’s’ keeper!” and folks were stepping up to share their perspectives. Four National Guards and a cop stood between the crowd and the building (with the aid of crowd control barriers), utterly stoic when the crowd shouted questions at them.
Folks probably know that I make video games as part of Future Proof Games, but maybe not what we’re doing at the moment. Many, many (many) years ago, Gregory made “(I Fell in Love With) The Majesty of Colors”, a very sweet Flash game about balloons and drowning.
As the site stats geek for FPG, I can tell you “Majesty” remains pretty damned popular. (Hell, it just got linked by Buzzfeed a few days ago.) It’s an evocative game that continues to appeal to folks wanting to explore the soft feelings of a big, weird, sessile alien. Problem is, Flash is finally actually dying — no phone/tablet can run it, and some browser configurations require user action before it’ll run Flash.
So we’re bringing “Majesty” to modern devices: Android, iOS, and Windows/OSX/Linux. And holy crap, this game feels great on a phone; moving the tentacle with your finger just feels real in a way that the tiny, mouse-controlled Flash version doesn’t. I’m excited to test it on tablets.
One of the first pictures taken of my newly-dyed locs.
I did it! I’ve had locs twice now, for a total of almost five years, and each time I’ve gone, “I should be bold and dye my hair!”
But it’s very permanent, especially since my natural hair color likely needs to be lightened for color to show much. Plus, lightening hair can be damaging. Last thing I want is to have my locs falling out. I’ve literally spent years growing these things; I’m not ashamed to say I’m a little attached to them, even if I don’t name them or count them.
But finally, with the aid of recommendations from friends and family on a beautician, I got my hair did.
Ossuary—Future Proof’s first commercial game release—is part of the Steam Summer Sale and will be 25% off until July 4. If you haven’t had a chance to play yet, it’s only $7.50 (USD). If you’re on the fence, the demo, “The Hodge-Podge Transformer,” is also on Steam.
It’s been on Steam for a year and a month now, and it’s been a fascinating experience. After watching a few Let’s Plays of Ossuary and “Hodge-Podge,” we released an update in December to improve the tutorial experience and solve some colorblindness issues.
Our current work in progress is Exploit: Zero Day, a cyberthriller where you roleplay a hacktivist by making and solving puzzles. It’s pretty cool, and our alpha players are making really friggin’ awesome puzzles and stories. If you want in, hop on the monthly mailing list and you’ll get a key in the next newsletter.
After coffee with a yogi friend, I was inspired to start climbing back on the yoga horse. Most yoga studios in my area only have Saturday morning classes, so I had very few options for something in the afternoon.
Whatever. I was feeling brave. I signed up for an all-levels Vinyasa hot class at a studio I’d never been to. Ninety minutes.