Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Sick Weekend At Home

It's interesting how some things happen on the weekend but no so much during the week; like how the weather will often be decent during the week and wait for the weekend to rain continuously. This isn't my only experience with such things. I'm not exactly sure how I got sick but I began to notice the symptoms on Friday and on Saturday it hit me like a freight train.

There's nothing to be done when you catch a cold really. You can take all the medication you want, eat all the chicken soup you want, bundle up and drink a bunch of liquids, it doesn't really matter. In the end you just have to ride it out. The only thing about the process one can adjust is the manner and magnitude of one's suffering. I'm normally the type to just suffer through it drug free but this time I self medicated so I could at least enjoy some part of my weekend. What's the expiration date on Extra Strength Tylenol anyway? Does it even really expire? At least I got to break in a new video game.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tech Free Zone In Your Home

It's likely impossible for most people to have an extra "free" room in their house but wouldn't it be something to have a technology-free room? A room with no electronics, not even outlets could be interesting though likely impractical in today's modern world. If you had one, what would you do with it?

It would definitely need a good window or set of windows for light. You could read but it would have to be by candlelight in the evening. You could have one of those meetings where everyone leaves their phone on the outside before coming it. It could be a family room for old school board games, charades and the like.

Finally, the room could be a stress-free room, a place you could go to decompress, meditate, and ponder your existence without distractions. Technology provides so much opportunity for distraction. It can be like noise but the kind we have become accustomed to. My spot like this is my back yard. It provides enough seclusion and relative quiet. Now I just have to go back to reading regular books. It's pretty hard to not use my Kindle.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Plenty of Sleep

Ever since I got back from my vacation I've started going to bed earlier. Now I'm getting closer to 8 hours of sleep every night with the exception of those days where I'm working on a personal project and lose track of time. In fact, I now seem to get more continuous sleep on weekdays than I do on weekends. I keep hoping early to bed will make me early to rise but that isn't happening. I wonder if this is the new norm for me. I will say that I arrive at work quite rested and in a good mood most days so there's a plus there. Here's a thought: What if the work I arrive to quite rested and in a good mood was my own company? Hmmm.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

I'm In A Podcast!

It's a podcast about comic books and its still in its fledgling stages but it's coming along nicely I think. Check out SubCitySound Episode 1 and let me know what you think. I'm open to suggestions.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Vegas 2014

So I took a week off and drove to Las Vegas, not to gamble but to get away. I went during the week, Sunday through Friday.

DAY ONE

The drive wasn't bad. It took me five hours but that was because I stopped at the outlet mall along the way. Who wouldn't? Checking in at the Rivera took about 20 minutes due to the line but it could have been worse. The clerk told me they upgraded my room for no extra charge. The room was fine but I imagine if I didn't get the upgrade I probably wouldn't have been happy with the room. I called an old friend as soon as I got in town and he was kind enough to drive down and meet me at my hotel for drinks. I was good seeing him again. I always value time spent with friends and it was a good way to spend my first evening in town. I didn't venture outside of the hotel the first night. Everything I needed was there. The bed was comfortable and I slept well.

DAY TWO

BurgrI walked a lot this day, up and down the strip, over 5.5 miles according to my pedometer. It was certainly more than my daily limit but it was a feast for my senses. Later I met up with another local old friend. We ate at BURGR inside Planet Hollywood and while the food was tasty enough, I can't say it was worth the premium price. The eye candy was worth mentioning though.

Later, back in my room I verified that the supposed free WiFi the hotel provides was wack. I've gotten better service on 3G networks. I called the front desk to complain about it but nothing changed. The 4G on my cell phone worked well though. I can always count on Verizon.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Last Month in Gaming

Lately I've been on a bit of an MMO kick, not to hurry and level up to get to the end game content. It's just casual though I do play for hours when I can. Here's what I've been about:
  • ArcheAge - I played the hell out of this game in beta and loved it. It's out of beta now and the crowded servers have died down enough for me to jump back in. It appears to be pay-to-win but it's definitely not pay-to-play and it is a lot of fun.
  • Guild Wars 2 - The just recently offered a free week so I tried the game out and really got into it. You have to pay for the game one time to play it forever and every so often they drop the price for a short period so I bought it at 50% off and it is well worth the purchase. Here's my favorite review of the game.
  • Firefall - I played a bit in beta and have played a few times since it's release but while it's not terrible, I don't feel compelled to play or to keep coming back. I'm trying to give it a chance but I'm far from being able to recommend it. The premise is fine. Maybe it's just a bit too frantic for me.
  • Coraabia is a weird but artistic card game that is still in beta but got recently translated into English. You play it in your browser. Sound is not required to enjoy the experience and lately I have taken to playing it at work when I need a break from the grind. It's not quite an MMO but it definitely has a strong multi-player component, though I've been sticking to the single player portion.
Another great thing about MMOs and the like is the new content being added regularly making the game better and better and when it's free-to-play that just increases the value and the fun. That's not all I'm playing of course. I'm also finding a little time for the following:
  • Trove is still in beta and it's looking pretty good so far. I'm actually looking for something like a 3-D version of Terraria and this may come close though it's a bit too early to tell. 
  • Warlock: Master of the Arcane was a game I got for free from a giveaway over at Humble Bundle and it is surprisingly good, way better than I had the right to expect. For me it's like a cross between Civilization and Warcraft with everyone one of your units being upgradable individually over time the more they fight. On top of that all the DLC went on sale this weekend, 75% off.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Am I My Brother's Keeper?

Is it our responsibility to look after the poor, sick, unsuccessful and generally less fortunate people than ourselves? If so, to what extent of our own income, time, effort, etc should we give? Should we be made to do it via taxes or law? Surely we should not simply ignore it and only look after our own. What percentage of people in our country would fall into this lot. Is it half? More?

I have always felt that the plight of the less fortunate is mostly ignored until their numbers come together on one issue or another to force everyone else to listen. Of course there are always people who give to charity and others in general including churches and other non-profit organizations. Those seem to help the individual or large groups but they don't generally cause any major change and often create new dependencies.

Walmart is supposedly going to open up banking with free checking to serve the people who for some reason can't open bank accounts elsewhere; people with bad credit and bad banking practices in general. I guess it's good for those people that need it which is apparently a large number of people. Is this a good thing? I know this is a business move but does this count as being helpful to those less fortunate?

If we are our brother's keeper, do corporations count as well? Does the government? Is everyone responsible to give? Should they be? I know. I know. All I have is questions.