Friday, September 26, 2008

Could be worse...

My country's economy could be inextricably tied to a much larger economic system which is fundamentally flawed and run by a gang of poorly-trained apes.

Oh, wait.

Well, fuck.

UPDATE: Marcy Kaptur is my kinda lady.

We went to Pittsburgh last weekend to see the Iowa Hawkeyes play a game of football against the Pittsburgh Panthers. I have yet to see the Hawkeyes emerge victorious from a contest. This may be due in part to my only ever having seen three games (two in bars, one in person). The 21-20 defeat was notable for having been the first football game I have ever attended. It was exciting. We stood up and sat down repeatedly. Katie coached me on the correct things to shout (useful phrases are: "Go, defense!", "Let's go Hawks!", "Go, Hawkeyes!", and "Go, D!"; less helpful were my original exclamations: "Yay!", "You're doing very well!", and "You are going to win!"). After every Pittsburgh first down or Iowa third down, they would play a panther snarl sound effect. Absolutely hilarious. Pictures forthcoming.

Finally made an effort at recapturing Hiro Nakamura's first moments in New York City.
Dammit, I was too far back. At least I was facing the right way. Hey, there's Andrew on the left! Anyway, yatta! Sort of.

My sister Jessica has finally escaped the flash-embedded clutches of the Book of Faces and bravely staked out a claim of her own in the wilds of the larger internets. Applause, please, for her new website. (I still abhor the word "blog.") If she's good, she may be in line for the second-ever OaAfTE. You can also nominate websites for the Award in either the comments or by e-mail.

I discovered a couple of new games this week. Adult Swim have created a sequel to the diverting Five Minutes to Kill (Yourself). Five Minutes to Kill (Yourself) 2 has you attending a horrfying family reunion in a park. The only way to escape? You guessed it: suicide. But hurry! Song-singing and family-picture-viewing begins in only five minutes!

Second, the boringly-titled Z-Rox has you trying to identify letters, numbers, symbols and shapes as though you were viewing them through a tiny slit. Katie and I got up to Level 50 last night before going to sleep. (When you click on the link, hit the tiny grey "Play!" to start the game, not the huge ignorant "CLICK TO PLAY!")

I'm a huge fan of Ben Croshaw's Zero Punctuation, so when I first heard of this anonymous series called "Zero Originality", I scoffed and passed it by. That was unfair. Beneath the blatant rip-off lies an honest and insightful look into the inner workings of that McDonald's of video game stores, Gamestop. I'm not sure if you've ever had dealings with Gamestop, and if you haven't: good, keep it up. If you have, then you probably already know what's wrong with that particular merchant. Suffice to say, the employees at the Gamestop on Myrtle Avenue near our house made someone important to me cry once, and I'll never bring my business there again. Blah blah blah, watch the videos, they're interesting. (The first one, however, has been removed from youtube, so start with the second one.)

Check out this game. (This is primarily for Katie, Abby and Jessica.)

Still. Pretty sweet, huh?

Speaking of sweet, posted a video of the recent promotion for Kirby Super Star Ultra for the DS. It involves soap and helium and broke my mind when I first saw it. Totally wicked.

Saw this on the walk home from the subway one day:

Nintendo has a new Wario game coming out for the Wii. It's a platform game (think Super Mario World), but the youtube video showing some gameplay is one of the most creative things I've seen in a while. (Protip: watch the whole page, not just the video window.)

And when I first saw this I thought I had missed a few months and it was April 1st again:
Seriously? Fuck me, then. Check out Romper Stomper there on the left. Here's the blurb from Ubisoft's website: "In Imagine Party Babyz (Nintendo Wii, October 2008) girls can play as a babysitter and take care of adorable babies. Entertain the babies through hilarious mini-games such as swings, tricycle races, monster chases in babies' dreams, dancing and soap bubbles contests."

GIRLS can play as a babysitter. What's next? "Imagine Subservient Housewivez"? "Imagine Conservative Hockey Momz"? This is the same company that created Beyond Good & Evil, Assassin's Creed and Prince of Persia? Day-um.



Last thing (before I go lie down for a bit). All this talk of the Large Hadron Collider (which is now, sadly, offline until next year) has lots of people asking: what does a gluon look like? What about this mysterious Higgs boson we've heard so much about? Well, the truth is, those particles are way too small for light to hit, so they actually, technically, don't look like anything. Weird, huh? Anyway, that's not about to stop these weirdos from making plushies of all the relevant theoretical particles. The tachyon, Higgs boson and strange quark are the coolest.

And a discussion of weird plushies wouldn't be complete without at least mentioning the Giant Microbes. One of the only opportunities you'll have to give someone the clap and not lose a friend/lover because of it.

That's all I've got for now! Thanks for visiting!

Now fuck off.

Love, Adam

Friday, September 12, 2008

Je suis brilliante.

My friend Melissa moved to Korea fucking ages ago, and I found her via her website during my last year in Taiwan. She had a baby and a Korean husband, but other than that she was exactly as I remembered her. Suffice to say that her website is impeccably-written, fascinating and funny. Suffice to say she has fantastic taste in her reading habits. Which brings us to the point.

A winner is me. Melissa gifted me with this lovely award, in all its pink, sparkly, compression-artifacted clipart glory. My website is apparently now "brilliante." Not sure what the "premio" means, though. And all I had to do was cry like a little baby.

Right. So, the award comes with this set of instructions, which basically amount to "send this to at least seven other blogs." Which is silly. First off, I don't think I even know of seven other blogs which are updated regularly and are well-written. (I mean, my god, have you read Kotaku recently? Fuck me, they need a copyeditor.) Secondly, I don't want to just float around somebody else's crappy jpeg when I could just as easily make my own crappy jpeg.

So that's what I did.
I give to you, the Official Award for Total Excellence, representing over an hour of Photoshop practice. (A staggeringly informative learning experience it made, as well, after bumbling my way through that McToken poster from the last post.) Well, I don't give it to you, not necessarily, but maybe.

If your name is Melissa, and you live in Korea. In a total shocker, Melissa is the sole recipient of the very first OaAfTE. Congratulations! Your official notification is on the way!

The award may also be presented to people, things or events which I recognize as having innate self-worth, such as Mega Man (who happens to be the first honorary recipient, btw).

Of course, every rose has its thorn, every night has its dawn, and every cowboy sings a sad, sad, song. Light and dark co-exist. The Force is constantly balanced by the Dark Side. Buffy and the Scooby-Gang are always faced with the machinations of the First. And to balance the zenith of accomplishment that the Official Award for Total Excellence represents, there is also the nadir of those websites (dis)graced with the Official "Dead to Me" Condemnation.
The Oa"DtM"C is presented to those individuals who can't be bothered to update their websites at all, having set off for the more 'productive' glades of MySpace or the Book of Faces. Well, screw that. J'accuse! J'accuse!

It is with a heavy heart that I present the inaugural Official "Dead to Me" Condemnation to both Katherine and Jonathan. Your websites are fail. (Allison, you're on notice.)

The condmenation may also be presented to individuals, things or events which evoke my ire, such as the Beijing Olympics and the sitting president of the United States of America.

Thanks for coming out to my impromptu awards ceremony. We had a few laughs, shed a few tears, and made the world a slightly better place.

On to matters of import.

This past week, the kids over at CERN fired up the Large Hadron Collider for the first time. It's a great jesus atom smasher, 27 kilometres in circumference, that's going to bash the shit out of a bunch of atoms to try and find the Higgs boson. It's fascinating and awesome. Of course, there are those who have no idea what a particle accelerator is or does, and they manage to conjure up all kinds of doomsday scenarios, wherein the collider creates a black hole, or some strangelets, or some antimatter, which will destroy the Earth. Some of them even went so far as sending death threats to some of the scientists on the project. Oh, heavens.

Speaking of CERN, Wired recently collected 10 videos showing off the flashier side of science. The water bubbles in space, Taiwanese demonstration of superconductors, and (of course) the Large Hadron Collider Rap are the standouts.

This guy has a deathwish, but for one brief, shining moment at the end there, he's almost badass.


This impeccably-photoshopped hamster (or gerbil) was found for sale on the Japanese Yahoo Auction site for the quite-reasonable price of ¥99,000,002,805,760 (over $900 million Murkan dollaz).

I'd buy one.

(Here's the auction watch website that Kotaku posted. Y'know, if you feel like being dazzled with kanji and kana.)

I found a new game called Aether. I played it for a while, but I wasn't able to accomplish anything. I went to another planet and ran around, but the fifteen minutes I devoted to it at lunchtime the other day were insufficient to unlock its secrets. If you can figure it out, let me know.

Well, it's Friday night, and I'm still here slaving away at my keyboard when I should be spending time with Katie. I'll leave you with this cartoon. Apparently, Seth McFarlane (the Family Guy guy) has turned his hand to youtube cartoons. He's released five (well, four and an intro), but this is the only one that's about video games. They're basically the Family Guy without the Family bits.

Now fuck off.

Love, Adam
Asps. Very dangerous. You go first.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Jesus save us.

Well, here we are. They both refer to themselves as "mavericks" almost constantly. What the fuck does that mean? If they were mavericks, they wouldn't be the christly Republican candidates. The foolishness they carried on with at the Convention this week is exactly the sort of empty, flag-waving jingoism that makes American patriotism so unpalatable to most of the rest of the planet.

All right, that's enough for now.
(P.S.: That abstinence-only sex ed. worked wonders for your daughter, didn't it? Oh, yes, I went there.)
(P.P.S.: Can you beleive that there's no McCain/Token logos freely available on the internet? I had to make that one up there all by myself.)
(P.P.P.S.: How did they do it?)

We went to Montreal last weekend, partially to enjoy a lovely long Labour Day weekend (Labor Day, for the Murkans), and partially to renew my work visa. Yay, NAFTA!

I put some pictures from the trip (along with our visit to Abby and Matt in Virginia and the long, long ago trip to Iowa for Nordic Fest) up on my Picasa account. Here is Vigirnia/Montreal, and here is Iowa.

Katie's never played an MMORPG before (and she probably couldn't even tell you what it stands for), but this game seems to have everything she likes, all rolled into one, pay-by-month package. I think it might be a WoW killer.

Everybody knows about Guitar Hero, but how many know about Guitar Praise? I'm not joking. And since I was so vitriolic up there towards the Republicans, I'll give the Christian Rock crowd a free pass. This time. I hope it does well. I can see how rocking with Satan himself would be anathema to the faithful. Easily my favourite aspect, though, is how you can't get booed off the stage as in Guitar Hero and Rock Band. Instead, "if you can't keep up, the artists will take a break and stop the music." Ooooh.

Here's a grand little commercial for Metal Gear Solid 4.

And it wouldn't be a post if there wasn't some Mega Man 9 love.

That's all you get this time. I'm tired, and I want to go watch Heroes with Katie.

Now fuck off.

Love, Adam
Pit bulls lick their own balls.