Category Archives: My Messy Mind

Some People Don’t Get Game of Thrones

New York Times wrote another piece sweepingly snubbing Game of Thrones. Last time it was called “boy-fiction” and raised an uproar from the legion of fans – most of which were of the lady variety. This time it is more informed and articulate, but ultimately misses something important. I think this oversight is generally what lies beneath the sweaty keyboard pounding when fans take to defending their interests.

After I read the article I wrote a long blog that basically amounted to “YOU DON’T LIKE WHAT I LIKE, YOU’RE A DOO-DOO HEAD!”, but when I hovered over the Publish button I recanted. I think there is something going on that is larger than what I think critics and the arbiters of taste realize; it is something as old and old itself. Perhaps I am late to the party on this, but I just realized it.

There is a shift going on in societies’ taste, genre is becoming accepted and mainstream. The old and stodgy snubbing of the fantastic is becoming dated, like a geriatric wildebeest falling behind the rest of the pack, waiting to be picked off by a hungry lion. If GoT did indeed only appeal to the small D & D audience and the fans of the books, I don’t think it would have been as successful as it is.

If we look at the top twenty highest grossing movies of all time, excluding “Titanic” and “The Passion of the Christ”, the other movies are steeped in fantasy and science fiction. If we go back in time and adjust for inflation we see less movies with strong fantastic elements dominating the top twenty. So what has changed? I can’t help but notice a trend between the super hero movies and the revamping of classic fairy tales.

I think as time progresses we will see fewer reviews of this nature; dismissing and brushing off shows/movies based on heritage of appeal and unconventional means of story telling. I understand that it is easier to dismiss something out of hand because of unfamiliarity, say that it should get with the program because this is how these things work, but everything changes and sometimes . I’m predicting in a couple of years people will look back on Game of Thrones and remark on how different and ground breaking it was, and the people raising that banner will be the same people who scoffed at it.

Despite having a lot names to follow and killing off the “main character”, there is still a sense of something. It feels big, nasty and oddly cold. This sense of wonder is what I think drives at the heart of the show, and ultimately drives the audience. We love a good underdog story, we love when good conquers all, but perhaps we want to see the more visceral side of humanity. Maybe we want to know how much hell a character went through so when they finally find heaven we can equally share in their moment. Whether or not GoT will deliver that feeling, book or show, is yet to be determined but for now the ride is entertaining. Until the conclusion of this epic story, I can’t forget that winter is coming.

 

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How the F-?

I’ll keep doing this as long as the search terms people use to find my site are interesting. This might turn out to be my favorite blog game.

Lets get started!

cthulu

Cthulu is a giant winged god with an octopus head, a million times more evil than weird looking, H.P. Lovecraft is probably most known for. I think this cult icon is the real reason behind the tentacle fetishes in certain parts of the world. We would like to believe it is something as innocent as perversion, but I bet it is far more nefarious. Don’t believe me? Here is a picture of Cthulu posing all sexy like, note how the wave is splashing on him; covering his nethers because it is too much sexy for some people – that or his bits are so damned tentacled and unnerving the author decided to have mercy. Comes down to personal preference really. In all seriousness, go read The Call of Cthulu.

freud comic

Well this one actually makes sense. I posted a comic on this earlier before, it is called The New Adventures of Sigmund Freud. The general premise behind it is that Freud was frozen for years and thawed out to bring freedom to the world. I have no idea who made it. I tried googling it and didn’t find the author’s website. So go google it if you want to read more. The idea of a Freud running around like Captain America using psychoanalysis to free the shit out of some people is quite frankly hilarious.

*Observation* Apparently he got his nipple pierced.

man staring at nothing

STOP LOOKING THROUGH MY WINDOW!

spider on your ass

Again, this could be taken several ways. If you are in prison; you either have a seriously problem or you are looking to entice someone with your goods, of which I have no idea how to help. If you aren’t in prison and in fact a spider is on your ass, I have no idea how to help. Good luck living the rest of your life out as a statue. I don’t know what kind of species of spider is proving its dominance over you, but I imagine it is something like this.

cosby sweater

This just won’t die. I will not post or explain what this is, go google it if you really want to know. If you look it up, I bet you will never look at fruit loops the same.

mullet with power bars

This sounds like a great name for a band. Imagine hearing that in concert.

“After Sonic Death Monkey, Mullet With Power Bars is going to melt your face off!”

I’m probably late to the party. Some metal band is likely already named that. Actually if the Trailer Park Boys started a band, I’m 100% sure that is what they would call themselves. I imagine Mullet With Power Bars playing a sweet guitar solo during a video game boss fight in a barber shop where the barber must battle a power mullet straight out of 80s Mississippi. Again, I’m probably late to that and is on the DS…… I think Wario World has something like that actually.

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Rage Comic Friday

Well, in an effort to post more I have decided that Tuesdays are How The F-? Tuesdays, in which I post the messed up search teams people find my blog with, and Friday is Rage Comic Friday. Sometimes I will make my own and other times I will find them randomly. I found this one at ragebuilder.com.

So this is one that I fall into every time Wal-Mart is mentioned. One does not simply walk into Wal-Mart for one thing…..

 

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How The F-?

This is a little game I am borrowing from two people; the eloquent fish of gold and the penmonkey Chuck Wendig.

Basically, I look over the search terms that people use to find my blog and write about it.

How can that go wrong?

frightened nude

…..Really?

I don’t remember using anything remotely close to this in any of my blogs or tags. Whatever, here we go.

Well, I see this going one of two ways; either somebody had their pants scared literally right off of them or they were already nude and became frightened. If the latter I assume it was a guy bent over the tub and accidentally looked at the mirror behind him, probably thought he was being attacked by a misshapen or badly deformed Wildebeest or something. If the former then I can only assume it was a Scooby-Do porn parody, I’m having a hard time making any sort of sense of something that would scare you nude. I guess if you were terrified of spiders and a nest hatched inside your pants that would be sufficient reason to get into the buff, but then you wonder about any spider explorers wandering into private areas, which we find ourselves bent over naked in front of a mirror again. What the hell is wrong with me?

nude grandmother

Next

I’m not making those up either. Look!

science, it works bitches

Yes, it does. I enjoy the modern conventions that our scientific community has bestowed upon us throughout the years. I enjoy Tang, video games, and the microwave to reheat leftover Pad Thai. I think calling everybody bitches is a bit unnecessary, but I applaud your enthusiasm, we should celebrate science more. The most amazing part of science is how we randomly come up with solutions to the worlds problems. Take a company researching a pill to help relax the heart, only to discover it barely does anything to the heart, but it helps grandpa knock over the knick-knacks grandma so artfully placed on the end table when grandpa turns his hips too fast.

 

funny grammatical errors

This one makes perfect sense. If you don’t get it just wonder around my blog a bit and it will make sense. There is some truth when I say I roll my face across the keyboard.

 

fashion mullet

I think this is the universe dividing by zero. Never have two opposing words been used together, these work together in the same way a brick doesn’t stay in the air. Then again, somebody made a ton of money from inventing vajazzling and pedazzling (google at your own risk), so I suppose anything is possible.

 

pictures of topless mermaids to colour in

I’m assuming by the u in colour that this is from across the pond, in which I ask why you are looking for topless mermaids to let your kids color? Then again this might be some perverted attempt at spicing up a marriage. If so I won’t judge, do what you have to do. I suggest a cup of ice, nine iron, duct tape, gummy bears,  and hungry hippos if you really want to get it going – you have to figure out how to use all that yourself, or google.

funny deathpool

What the hell is wrong with you? How dare you! It is Deadpool and if you can’t get that right I will take all your Internets away! ALL OF THEM!

 

ask the murlock

Whoever came up with Murlocks should be flogged, seriously. That damn garbled noise they make is about the most annoying sound I have ever heard. Then again it is always about context. We have this murlock sound:

and we have what would probably be the same if a dog stood in front of a sprinkler.

Which is hilarious.

 

things that make me laugh

I usually put stumble upon on humor and just go to town. Then again I can spend days looking at funny gifs. Here is my favorite gif. Mind you there is not a logical reason behind why I find it so damn funny.

 

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Tolkien and Nazis

So I was reading this interesting little article over at io9 about Tolkien and the German publishing industry in 1938. You can read it here, so click and go read it!

The breakdown is that Tolkien was working out getting published in Germany and was asked a very interesting question that basically resulted in him responding what we would translate into WTF today; the publisher asked for documents proving his Aryan heritage. Before he replied he sent a letter to his publisher asking his opinion on the subject. In his letter to his publisher he said he had written two responses to the Germany publisher; one ignoring the question and the other basically saying piss off – but very English and very Tolkien-y.

Thank you for your letter. I regret that I am not clear as to what you intend by arisch. I am not of Aryan extraction: that is Indo-Iranian; as far as I am aware none of my ancestors spoke Hindustani, Persian, Gypsy, or any related dialects. But if I am to understand that you are enquiring whether I am of Jewish origin, I can only reply that I regret that I appear to have no ancestors of that gifted people. My great-great-grandfather came to England in the eighteenth century from Germany: the main part of my descent is therefore purely English, and I am an English subject – which should be sufficient. I have been accustomed, nonetheless, to regard my German name with pride, and continued to do so throughout the period of the late regrettable war, in which I served in the English army. I cannot, however, forbear to comment that if impertinent and irrelevant inquiries of this sort are to become the rule in matters of literature, then the time is not far distant when a German name will no longer be a source of pride.

Your enquiry is doubtless made in order to comply with the laws of your own country, but that this should be held to apply to the subjects of another state would be improper, even if it had (as it has not) any bearing whatsoever on the merits of my work or its sustainability for publication, of which you appear to have satisfied yourselves without reference to my Abstammung.

 

While I found this entertaining in an old school English way, read with the voice of Winston Churchill while he drank bourbon and smoked cigars, what got me were the comments to this article.

It starts with a comment from a guy saying that Bear Jew from Inglorious Basterds should pair up with Tolkien in a buddy movie as they move across Europe causing all sorts of what can only be described as shenanigans.

From there we add several other amazing characters completing what I could only describe as the most amazing movie concept ever.

The list goes as:
Roald Dahl (I know…)
Ian Fleming
Robert Heinlein
Julia Child
Bear Jew
Fassbender’s Magneto
Sniper from Saving Private Ryan
Mal Reynolds

I am having a hard time understanding just how awesome something like this would be.

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Being Manly

So while I have been sick my fiancée has been ridiculing me nonstop, basically saying i’m a huge baby. Apparently I whine and ask for unreasonable things. I, of course, say other wise. I think asking for cold ice water and not to have to run a million errands while i’m sick is reasonable, but thankfully there is somebody in my life to tell me I am wrong.

The first night that my flu/strep throat/sinus infection c-c-c-c-combo breaker set in I was laying in bed coughing parts of my insides out. I was talking to her about the things going on with my body and I casually mentioned that I am worried I might be getting pneumonia, mostly due to how hard it was for me to breathe and the fact that a few people in the office are out with it. That was me being a huge baby and extreme, there was no possible way I was that sick. While I think this is all in good jest, some part of my male pride was severely offended and I started to roll over the manly things that I have done in my life.

So here is part of the list.

  • helped build a house.
  • hunted an animal, cooked it at a campfire, and brought the pelt/antlers back as evidence.
  • been shot
  • broken bones fighting
  • been electrocuted
  • mastered the art of a firm handshake
  • passed kidney stones
  • put chili on my ice cream

I have done a little research about the things that entail general manliness and have come to the conclusion there are other things I can do that will implicitly enforce my masculinity and never bring it into question next time I am sick.


1) Shave my face with something only men in the remotest regions of Russia use

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2) Imitate and uphold the holy trinity of manliness; Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris, and Steve McQueen

3) Get a prostate exam and never complain, cry, or twitch

4) Become a lumberjack

5) Wrestle bears like Teddy Roosevelt

 


6) Be Zakk Wylde – seriously Ozzy Osborne told this guy to tone down the drinking, think about that

7) Grow a handle bar moustache

8) Toss kegs really far

9) Put more spice on my ice cream

10) Help elderly women more

 

Runner up was being able to play a sweet drum solo. I just wanted to keep it at 10 things. Wasn’t too sure about this guy, he either is insanely manly or a few sandwiches short of a picnic. He puts on a bulletproof vest then shoots himself in the chest to see how well it works.

 

 

How about you, do you have anything manly to add to the list?

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Must & Cannot

I’ve been reading Writing to Sell and I have learned a few things. The lesson that I found to be the most telling is a simple plot skeleton that revolves around two basic elements; must and cannot. The lack of one or both of these can really hinder your story.

Scott Meredith says one of the most basic mistakes every new writer makes when trying to write a salable manuscript is forgetting the basic driving force behind every story. This would be the problem that the lead character MUST deal with, something extremely urgent and pressing. This would be something in the ballpark of a bad guy taking a character’s family and holding them for ransom or internal like an alcoholic overcoming his addiction before his wife leaves with the kids. Scott says this necessary for making the reader worry about your character’s outcome, helping them invest into your book. If the MUST is mundane or easily solvable, it won’t really capture an audience and a publisher won’t buy it.

The other element is CANNOT. This is the part of the problem where it seems as if the character CANNOT solve the problem. Going along with the earlier examples; the character can’t pay the ransom because he just lost his house and all his possessions to a tornado, and the alcoholic is having problems pushing through his addiction because he just lost his job and found out his son has a terminal illness. This is where the assault on the character prevents them from accomplishing their goals, starting from minor complications and cranking it up to where it just seems like we are in a moment of darkness.

Don’t go over board though, if you create an unsolvable problem just to make some ridiculous solution, you lose the reader. If you don’t have a logical solution or don’t explore and exhaust possible alternatives to your problem, you will lose the reader. Like the man lost his house and possessions but still owns a BMW, of which he won’t sell to get his family back. You will lose the reader, so be logical about your problems and solutions.

I posted about this because after I read the five chapters on plot skeletons, I went through some of my stories and wasn’t totally surprised at what I found. The early stories I wrote definitely lack a solid must and cannot, which Mr. Meredith simply calls incidents. What I mean by early are the stories that I haven’t edited very much. The stories I have edited heavily (including my manuscript) have these elements in them which sort of amazed me. I wonder if the countless editing and revising until I felt it was rounded is what did it, or I just stumbled into it.

I’ve been writing for a while now, more or less just taking the chaos from my head and putting it words, learning empirically as I go about what works and what doesn’t. I have some stories that I am damn proud of and others that smell really, really bad. I have posted some of both, which I suppose I should be embarrassed about the stinkers but I want to learn and sometimes the best avenue is through the blog.

Now that I am making submissions to agencies and magazines I really want to see growth in my writing and do what I need to do to make my work salable. I know to write, is to write is to write, but while I’m writing I am examining the work through the eyes of a professional. There are tons of information and books out there and it is hard knowing what is valuable and what isn’t, but you don’t know unless you try.

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My Rage Comic

Got bored, decided to make a rage comic. Actually I’ve made a few now, but I will show you this one.

You can make your very own over at the Rage Comic Builder

 

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Colbert 2012

So if you haven’t heard, Stephen Colbert is running for president in South Carolina, you know his home state. He tried a few years ago and was removed by the South Carolina Democratic Party executive council. So like any good little Southerner, he won’t be told what to do. Colbert is going to take on the system, with the system.

His super-PAC, which in no way communicates with him, is running a series of ads in South Carolina by owner John Stewart that offers some very funny rifts on our already troubled and out of touch Republican candidates while actually making some valid points.

Here is one about Mitt Romney.

Basically in Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad, 118 U.S. 394 (1886), the Supreme Court recognized corporations for the purpose utilizing the Fourteenth Amendment which gives a wide definition of what citizenship is, gives Due Process to all of a state’s citizens, and Equal Protection under a state to all of its citizens.

Now, with those rights it gives some basic freedoms to Corporations to help protect themselves (like you and I have) and simplify tax laws. That is all fine and dandy.

Where the problem begins is that is also allows Corporations to make donations to political parties.

Take that and couple it with the ruling of United Citizens v. Federal Election Committee in 2010, basically saying that money equals free speech. Corporations and Unions don’t have a limit on independent spending in politics.

Ask yourself a question, what is it that politicians live and die for?

The answer is being elected.

The second a Senator gets elected, he immediately starts to figure out how he can be re-elected. He isn’t alone in this, all politicians have this gene. politicians love getting elected almost as much as anybody else in the world loves money.

So, how does this happen? Well he/she raises money to travel around and tell people how awesome he/she is. The more he/she advertises explains his/her greatness, the more likely people will vote. (generally). Traveling around, making posters, paying people to organize things, creating TV ads, making websites, and all that costs money. In fact it costs a lot of money. Where does it come from?

Say, how likely are you to donate to a politician? Well corporations donate a lot of money to politicians, they lobby them to make decisions in their favor. Politician gets money to get elected, the corporation gets backing for something they want/need. I’m oversimplifying that process a little, but that is basically how it works.

Everybody wins, except the American people, and democracy insures that we will only be governed as well as we deserve.

Lobbying itself isn’t inherently evil, the donating money to the politicians is what hurts everybody. The law process in our country starts to shift (and has in some areas) a tug of war game between big corporations where the American people are caught in the middle.

COUGH – SOPA- COUGH. Media v Tech.

So cue the current Colbert super-PAC ad. Romney said that corporations are people. Romney also used to dismantle business and sell what he could. So if corporations are people, and Romney dismantled business and sold what he could….. he is then a serial killer?

If Corporations are people, why hasn’t one ever been executed and why when a corporation is brought to court is it not judged by other corporations?

It’s a joke of course, but he raises a good point. Which is basically in a nut shell what Colbert is trying to do in the big picture. He is not actually trying to run for President of the United States, he is just trying to show the idiocy that is our current system.

It amuses me when news channels blast Colbert for missing his deadline to register for the ballot, like he didn’t know that? Him and his army of writers and political aficionados aren’t likely to look over that detail, just saying.

Now before you dismiss what he is doing as nonsense, tomfoolery, and/or mockery of our voting system, I urge you to look at a few things.

  • He explained in layman what a super-PAC is, how it works, and what is used for.
  • He is showing that as long as you have money, you have all the free speech you want.
  • He is showing just how shady and squirrely the laws have become for our elected officials.
  • He is proving how synonymous politician and entertainer have become during election time.

Elections are less and less about actual policy and law and more about entertaining the people with non-sense and things a President has no control over rather than addressing difficult issues.

Whether you agree or not with a person’s decision, is it the place of the government to tell somebody who they can and can’t marry? I guess it isn’t that surprising considering it wasn’t that long ago various groups of our nation didn’t have rights, we seem to still be stuck in some backwards mentality.

See I probably just hit a button. Now watch when a politician is being asked a question that is best left unanswered, watch how quickly they jump to a social hot button and avoid tough questions. No single party is innocent of this tactic either, oh no. In fact there are no innocent parties in politics. Everybody is guilty of something. I just happen to believe that right now the conservative side is showing just how weak it is.

No, I didn’t vote for Obama. But I will with the crowd we have now. We have Newt complaining about how Romney came into money by the very laws that Newt helped pass. We have people not voting for Romney even though he is the poster child for fiscal conservatives. We have people who think Freedom of Religion means every religion but Judeo-Christian. We have another guy who, although he is honest and sticks to his guns – I really, really do admire that, is kind of crazy. Then again maybe we need crazy?

Anyway, just because I don’t agree with the conservative doesn’t make me a liberal. In fact I’m a moderate. I believe we need balance between states and federal government and I believe Republican and Democrats have valid points on some issues and believe they are idiots on others.

This “my party or the enemy” mentality needs to go, the my way or the highway approach isn’t working. We need better discussion and open dialog. I think that Colbert/Stewart are the only ones trying to level the field, trying to bring things around from out of touch politicians stuck in their ways and expose the loop-holes in our system.

If you comment, be nice.

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Dubstep & Writing

Between going in and out of meetings  and being harassed by people in different departments from stupid to insanely hard questions, I have basically given up hope to listen to audiobooks at work. This was once one of my favorite ways to pass time at my job. Listen to the book and just work, enjoy the fruits of my imagination painting a picture. Sounds simple right?

No.

I have started leaving my iPod at home and canceled my audible subscription. If I’m not in a meeting or talking to somebody about something, I eventually run through my work load and start hitting bumps. These bumps are in part what I’m paid for, which demand my entire attention and sometimes can cause me to start bleeding out of the ears because the problem I am faced with is the software equivalent of putting makeup on a bull, mid bull ride. These are daily exercises in building character.

I  just found out I have been inadvertently doing linear algebra in my head. Kind of shocked me because I am very bad at math (not like I don’t get it, more like I have to work five times harder to than normal people to understand what they consider simple concepts).  I never thought I would ever learn/utilize this level of math in my life. But the way that the tech world works, things change and you better adapt. So take that and multiply by two because I have started a new project at work, good-bye ability to enjoy audiobooks at work.

This has left a gap in my awareness. I can’t just sit and not have anything to listen to. I have listened to the music I own and digested it so much that I spend more time skipping songs than I do actually listening to one. I’ll pick one, listen to it, skip for about three or four hundred songs, listen to another, rinse and repeat. So I am over my music collection and this has left a gap in my attention span, I somehow feel mentally naked without something to process in the background. It is a very odd feeling.

I can’t just NOT listen to something, that would mean listening to gossip and the guy behind me and his extremely personal hourly phone calls. I can only hear about Crohn’s Disease in detail for so long. So, with my lull in music, I have decided to fully embrace dubstep.

 

Yeah, I know.

For the past few days I have submerged myself into this very, very odd and sporadic music genre. Imagine catching a fish then getting it drunk and electrocuting it, then imagine putting it in a giant fish tank where a dinosaur with a laser attached to its snout constantly tries to snap at the fish through the glass. Now imagine being that fish.

That is what listening to dubstep feels like.

I’m not even remotely exaggerating.

The moral of all that? Dubstep is very hit or miss for me, but the songs and bands I have discovered are exactly what I need to fill the space in my head while I try to work; just enough to ignore, but awesome enough that I can enjoy it while working.

I fear what would happen if I listened to dubstep while I wrote. If it was remotely coherent it would probably read like a lab rat’s drug induced wet dream, just imagine Muppets with human eyes.

As for writing, I haven’t been doing a ton of it, but I have been consistent. I just finished another story and that makes me very excited and happy. I’m already two stories completed into 2012, which makes me feel very accomplished. Even though I had started both of them in 2011, I’m just going to ride this wave of productivity and say I have kicked ass.

I have several different stories submitted out in the world, some a second phase of feedback and others in that WHY HAVEN’T THEY EMAILED ME BACK YET stage of post-submission anxiety. I swear I won’t allow myself to get it, but it happens…….every time.

Other than that, life is good. Wish school loans would go die in a car fire. I could blog four years on how a 13% interest rate on school loans can really be a turd in your cereal.

I follow politics fairly close and have wondered if I should chime in with a blog or two. Some interesting things are going on within the Republican field. Not to mention all the shenanigans that Stephen Colbert and John Stewart are doing.

Few other posts to make but are super secret still. I will publish them when I can.

Back to the word mines!

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