The Animal Farm

February 28th, 2009

Come on already

Let me preface this with HUGE SPOILER tags.  I know Ricky at least loves Battlestar Galactica and reads this site, so I feel I need to make sure he sees this.  There is story being told in this post, there are major secrets about the show that I am going to reveal, if you haven’t watched any of it yet, and want to find out the story when you do get around to watching it, don’t read anymore.

Okay, I’ve been a huge Battlestar Galactica fan since Brian introduced me to the series after season 2.5, I believe.  It is a great show.  BSG is done in 3 weeks.  That’s it, they have three weeks to attempt to end the series and tie up all the plethora of loose ends that they’ve created in the last 4 years.  What do they do with the past five episodes?They spend the first two staging, executing, and ending a mutiny that in the end had very few real important points. Sure, they were awesome to watch and really let you understand the political and emotional problems within the fleet, but those episodes really didn’t give any information about what the hell is going on in this world.

The next episode is a story dump that, while I loved it, seemed like the writers really felt rushed to get all this information to us because there are so few episodes left.  At this point I thought the show was really just going to go into wrap up mode and every episode after it would be focused on the things that’ve always mattered; the opera house, what/who Starbuck is, what Cavil actually planned on doing, what the final five cylons were going to do now that they were all together(sort of).  But no, the next episode might’as well’ve been a soap opera.

We gleened NOTHING new from this episode, just that Ellen and Saul still have issues.  This episode also served to remind me why I was glad Ellen died the first time, she really is a character you hate.  The previous episode she seemed poised and noble, I thought she was going to be different this time.  But no, she is back to being a jealous, selfish, back-stabbing wench again.  You’d think suddenly remembering you were one of the creators of the cylons, that you’d been a member of the 13th tribe, that you tried to stop the cylon war on the 12 colonies, and that you were a co-rediscoverer of ancient technology that allowed you to be immortal that you would stop being such a miserable, petty person.

Now we have this week’s episode.  Sure, we get SOME tidbits of information about who Kara is and that maybe Anders is doing something useful in his coma, but really this episode was just as uneventful as the last one.  I get it, Galactica is not going to make it.  I get it, Boomer is still a pretty terrible person.  Why did it take an entire hour, or 1/5th of the remaining air time of the series as a whole, to reinforce those two, little facts?  Oh, and the 8th cylon model might be Kara’s dad.  You could’ve spent more time on that, that would’ve made me happy.

So now we have 3 episodes  left, with the final episode being at least 2 hours, to explain all this stuff.  If they do it in the form of another information dump, they could probably do it in one episode.  The point is though, out of 5 episodes, only one was of any real value in terms of finishing up the story.  It seems like they could’ve spread that out a little more.  I kind of liked the old style of giving us little pieces of story every episode, instead of this every few episodes really matter stuff.

Don’t get me wrong, I still love the series and even enjoyed all of these episodes in the past 5 weeks.  I just wish they wouldn’t waste what little time they have left.  I will be extremely dissapointed if the series just ends with everyone dying, or with some BS “All this has happened before, and it will happen again” Nietzsche garbage.  If they even end it with something that seems like the beginning of the next cycle, I’ll puke.  Nietzsche is fine and all, but its a tired story line.

Also, Heroes, yes I still watch Heroes, has no freaking storyline anymore.  Its just, “Oh noes we’re being hunted and I can paint the future!  Let’s make what I paint not happen!”  Every season is this, and it got old 2 seasons ago.

Zach

And guess what?  I love pancakes!

February 26th, 2009

My Muse

I’ve found my Moose at last.

A splendidly artsy coffee shop called Open Eye. It’s got all the trappings I want out of my coffee shop: (mildly) intimidating baristas, pretentious conversations all around, and hippy music in the background. The unisex bathrooms threw me off (I stopped and had to look back and forth for a second, calculating my decision), but I think it gives the place a little street cred.

This all comes a little late, as not only do I no longer regularly drink coffee, but I found out tonight that starting again actively infuriates my body. I nearly fell down upon standing after little over a cup.

While we’re on the topic of my ingestion, in regards to my adherence to my ‘diet’ (used here to reference my nutritional intake in general, and not that thing old women do while counting how many Cheerios they eat - no lie, my grandmother has done this), I’ve been gradually wavering in my increased healthiness/more frugal spending. It was always my intention that I would never shirk a social outing for this change, and now that those are becoming a bit more frequent, my healthy eating has been in decline. I’m not too concerned, as again, this was all a conscious decision on my part, but I have once broken down.

Whatevs, yo. This ain’t no fitness site.

I really do suck at sewing. I wasn’t lying.

February 26th, 2009

Lunchtime Updates

I had a chance to sit down with Street Fighter IV last night, trading blows with Ricky and hurling blue fireballs along with obscenities.

It is, basically, Street Fighter. The formula is nigh-identical, with a few tweaks here and there. It’s a gorgeous game (I actually mistook in-game footage for a cutscene). The music is typical Street Fighter cheesiness. I’ve never been a huge SF fan, and this game won’t convert me, but it’s a nice change from the games I’ve been playing recently. It’s something fun to play until Resident Evil 5 and Crystal Chronicles 2 come out next month.

I’ve also been watching the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (British edition). It’s a faithful representation of the book, with fully 98% of the script being copied verbatim, and it’s still awful. If you ignore the bad special effects (Zaphod’s second head is laughable), the story just doesn’t tell well in that format. However, the person cast as Ford Prefect is perfect in every way.

Indestructible!

February 23rd, 2009

Hilarity Ensues

Media to talk about, and fast before a meeting starts:

Y: The Last Man. Awesome graphic novel. About, well, the last man on Earth (all the women are still around, mind you). Lots of fun events, and the main character is an escape artist - how can you not love magicians?

Coupling. Hilarious. It’s akin to a British version of Friends, but more direct and with better humor at times. There are a few moments that had me doubled over in laughter.

Secretary. Weird movie. I believe Ricky said that he wanted to do everything in that movie to Maggie Gyllenhall. Ricky is a Monster with a capital M. It’s not a bad movie, but don’t watch it with your family or small children or any women you want to talk to you again.

Interview with a Vampire. Still one of the best vampire movies around. Upon rewatching, it’s clear that at times the acting leaves something to be desired, but that’s OK.

Supermarket. Also a pretty cool graphic novel. Very short (one volume), very simple, and very stylish. It’s not expensive and doesn’t involve the investment Y: The Last Man does. It’s also recommended by one of the more pleasant clerks in the comic shop, so take that for what it’s worth. A lot.

Fin!

A lack of realistic gore is not a sensible criticism for Chess.

February 18th, 2009

My Job on GameDev

It’s not usually my practice to write about work, mostly because I don’t care to walk that line between what I can and can’t talk about publicly. However, GameDev.net had an update about us. Read it, if you like. Or don’t. It’s businessy and high-level, but perhaps you’ll find it riveting all the same.

Apparently this site was blogged about (see the comments from my previous post). By a real blog, no less, not someone pimping Cialis. I’m still amazed people can manage to find this site - it’s not on anyone’s radar, content is sparse at best, and our name conflicts with some silly book. But find it people do, which is why our ad service has netted me a whopping $20 in the past year. Of course, Google only pays out when you’ve made over $100, so that $20 is still a distant dream.

A real-life Elite Beat Agents? Sign me up. Mega64 is awesome. Just shy of “Hey Ash, Whatcha Playing?” in terms of video game humor videos.

Street Fighter IV comes out today, and despite having no vested interest in Street Fighter, I’m mildly excited. I’m more excited that the new Star Ocean comes out next week (let us hope it doesn’t suck as much as the last one) and that there’s only one month left for RE5. OH! And Puzzle Quest 2 next week too! Maybe this sequel will also be a cheating bastard that I can yell at. AND Black Sigil finally got a release date for Mach 17th. Mind you, I’m way too busy to play any of these, but if I’m going to sacrifice anything it will be sleep.

Speaking of sleep, anyone know what the leading causes for exhaustion are? I find that even with 8-9 hours of sleep, I’m dead to the world. It’s become rather… tiresome (ba dam BAH!).

Always end the name of your child with a vowel, so that when you yell the name will carry.
–Bill Cosby

February 17th, 2009

Consumption, the Aftermath: Volume 3, Episode 6, Second Half.

I’ve given up on the UNC Anime group (codename Cou, which may or may not stand for Carolina Otaku Uprising). It’s not that there’s anything wrong with it per se, I certainly didn’t abandon it for some crazy dramatic reason like another attendee killing my goat, it just doesn’t jive with the way I consume media. My trend is to get fixed on a show, watching it from start to finish in large segments. Weekly episode installments very rarely keep my excitement, which is one of the reasons I prefer purchasing DVD boxsets to getting cable. I wasn’t really intrigued by any of the anime either; it felt like I was watching just to watch, but by the end of So Long, My Despair (the second show of 6) I was bored and ready for a nap (which, admittedly, may have cast a pallor on how I viewed the rest of the shows). Maybe I’m not the anime enthusiast I used to be, but it just ain’t doin’ it for me.

I’ve discovered something very, very important. Come closer while you read this. No, a little closer. I want to see you really squinting. Here goes:

I suck at sewing. My task was simple: sew two buttons back on two shirts, which the washing machine had throttled in its campaign against me being clothed. This is not rocket science. It’s not even simple kinematics. This is something everyone should be able to do naturally, and I suck at it. If you’re looking for them, you’ll spot the defects easily. You’ll spot them and you’ll think, “ew.” You won’t say it, because you’re too nice, but you’ll think it privately, and I won’t be invited round for Christmas dinner anymore.

I’m starting a collection of other people’s mail. The Post Office, wrought with the struggles of their day, have seen fit to send me the mail of no less than four other individuals. Previous tenants, perhaps? Vengeful spirits still inhabiting the house that can’t get by without their important documents? Some of these documents are important. You’d think people would remember to change their address.

I’m trying to think of how I can squeeze more trivialities into this post, but I just don’t think I can. Good night, sweet princes of Maine. Perhaps tomorrow will bring brighter fortunes.

That’s a disproportionate response!

February 16th, 2009

A History Lesson

Behold, a section of the Sowers History book covering all the relevant bits of the last two weeks (note that when I say all the relevant bits, I mean that - I’m not just talking about the relevant ones in my life, but yours as well):

(1) Brian is introduced to Ga-Rei Zero (that spelling is wrong, I know it) and wonders which characters they’ll introduce next just to kill them. Straight up, the first two episodes introduce something on the order of eleven seemingly important characters, and they are all dead by the end, leaving nobody.

(2) Brian meets Max. Max is crazy. Brian’s always had an affinity for crazy ladies. See Chapters 4, 8 & 12 for other examples. Alternatively, see the appendix under “All the women Brian’s ever talked to, except maybe his grandmother who is kind of normal most of the time.”

(3) Brian goes on a 4 AM ferret hunt. This is a remarkably long story, that evokes laughter and tears in even the most stoic audiences, but will not be repeated in this format. See the audio tape, “Stuff Brian’s Done at 4 AM That You Should Know About” for the full details.

(4) Brian learns to play Race for the Galaxy, which has rapidly joined Dominion as one of his more enjoyed games.

(5) Brian listens to Journey’s “Separate Ways.” Brian then watches the music video and decides to end all music forever. This is still an ongoing process.

(6) Brian kind of likes the Heroes premiere, but experience has taught him that the rest of the season never holds up. Brian also thinks Ellen being the final Cylon is garbage.

(7) Brian wants you to know, in case you didn’t, that Snap kills Dumbledore. That misspelling is on purpose, kind of. Work it out.

I find it ironic that all the important events of the last two weeks involve me, don’t you?

The couch has been scientifically engineered to prevent from such things as abrasions, head trauma, and… Daleks!

February 11th, 2009

Ya Burnt

Burn Notice.

Yea.

Hells yea.

It’s a fun show. The main storyline moves too slow, but I have that complaint a lot. It’s basically 80% Michael Weston, 10% Bruce Campbell, and 10% story. Oh, and there’s some lady in there that likes guns. I guess she’s fun sometimes.

Ok, I’m a tad distracted. You get the short post today.

To the pain.

February 8th, 2009

The Challenge: Complete

Unless I get incredibly, incredibly hungry between now and lunchtime tomorrow, I’m going to call it.

It ended up something of a failure and something of a success. Strictly speaking, I did only spend $27 on food. However, I had a few items left over from a previous grocery run, and work bought lunch while we worked on the weekend, both of which I wouldn’t have it made it through the week without - not because of a break in commitment on my part, but simply because the food ran out. The original goals were satisfied - I lived significantly healthier and cheaper for the entire week. Even wiped caffeine out of my diet as a byproduct.

Of course, as I said, this was not a one-shot deal. I’m going to up my budget to $40, since I’m working off 0 this time (nothing but peanut butter left). I also want to add a bit more variety in there and get more nutritional value. I’m confident $40 should be sufficient, and I may be able to tone it back a bit, we’ll see what happens. Thus, this all starts over again Tuesday (I’m leaving Monday open as my F-it day, mostly because I enjoy going to Bricks with the coworkers).

I’m gonna break my rusty cage and run.

February 3rd, 2009

When Did This Salmonella Scare Start?

Because I’ve got a container of peanut butter that I bought maybe a couple months ago, and it found me and has been eyeing me longingly.

I am in such despair!