Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Haul 2010

Merry Christmas, bitches! It's that time again, and like last year, in addition to listing the awesome loot I've received, I'm also going to list the totally bad-ass gifts I've given to others. Again, not to show how generous I may or may not be, but because I like giving gifts as much as, if not more than, I do receiving them. Here are the gifts I've given this year, in no particular order:

Lots and lots of Glee: The Music (Volume 3, Journey, and the Rocky Horror Glee show). Seriously, lots of Glee. Several copies of each.

Glee: Season 1 (DVD). Glee, yo. It's awesome.

Family Game Night 3 (Xbox 360). Classic Hasbro board games, now in convenient electronic form!

Rock Band 3 (PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii). Yo, Guitar Hero, I'm really happy for you and I'mma let you finish, but Rock Band 3 is the best band game in the world. IN THE WORLD! That meme's still fresh, right?

iPhone App Magnets. They're magnets for your fridge that look like the iPhone App icons. Geeky and practical!

COPIC Pens and Markers. The Cadillac of art supplies.

Casio WK-210 Keyboard. A joint gift, but a gift nonetheless. Child-like glee, right here.

RobotMan and Stellar plush figures. From the 80's. Go here if you don't remember them.

Laser-etched crystal "Wolf Howling at the Moon" carving and lighted display base. Ooooh, pretty.

First edition hardcover copy of "Through the Ice" signed and personalized by the author, Piers Anthony. Fuck yeah. This is definitely the most epic gift I have ever had the pleasure of giving.

MySims Sky Heroes (Wii). The kids love this crap.

Chemistry Set. For my niece, a geek girl gamer in training. She is going to make some young geek out there very happy one day.

Origami book and paper. If I weren't such a spaz with creative arts, I would totally do origami. It looks like a shit-ton of fun.

San Francisco Giants 2010 World Series Championship Hat. Yay Giants! I may not be a fan of baseball anymore, but their playoff run and eventual championship was extremely compelling.

Amazon Kindle e-book reader. I have seriously contemplated one of these for myself.

Garmin GPS with friction-based dashboard mount. Never be lost again!

Assorted makeup from Sephora. The ladies love makeup from Sephora.

And now, here's what I received, again in no particular order:

"Obsessed with Star Wars" Quiz book. 2500 questions about all 6 Star Wars films. So geeky, and so awesome.

"Last Words," by George Carlin. Carlin was the man.

"The Areas of My Expertise," by John Hodgman. Funny shit right here.

$25 gift card to Best Buy. From the dipshit coworker who was surprisingly upset about my leaving. I kinda feel bad now. Wait, no, no I don't.

$25 gift card to Target. This place and Best Buy are the only two brick and mortar stores I shop at. Fuck yeah.

Lego Star Destroyer. Shit yeah! This baby kicks some serious ass.

Evil League of Evil t-shirt. "Seriously not good guys." LOL

Tusken Raiders logo t-shirt. Combining two of my favorite things: Star Wars and the Oakland Raiders. OMG so much win.

Jayne's leather bracelet from Firefly/Serenity. Two words: Bad. Ass.

Glee CD Board game. lololol.

"Gonzo Gizmos" project book. Make a gauss rifle out of stuff found around the house? Yes.

Reese's Peanut Butter Trees. OMG OMG OMG, I love these. If this was all I received this Christmas, I would be happy. No, seriously. They're THAT good.

Forza 2 (Xbox 360). Yay, racing! Forza is way better than Gran Turismo.

My Name is Earl, Season 3 and Season 4 (DVD). Jason Lee! As Kevin Smith is my favorite director, Jason Lee is my favorite actor.

The Tick vs Season 2 (DVD). Evil doers, you face The Tick! I'm so disappointed there haven't been more DVD releases for this awesome show.

Toy Story 3 (Blu Ray). And the trilogy is complete! I haven't seen this yet because I missed it in theatres. But I heard it is fucking awesome, and Pixar doesn't disappoint...ever.

Batman: Under the Red Hood (Blu Ray). NPH! John DiMaggio! Jensen Ackles! Good stuff.

The Nightmare Before Christmas (Blu Ray). One of the few Tim Burton flicks I actually like.

Back to the Future Trilogy (Blu Ray). 1.21 Jigawatts! Great Scott! Love these movies. Plus, it comes with a voucher for the first episode of the new game for FREE.

"Mini Weapons of Mass Destruction" project book. Build a BB gun out of a mechanical pencil, or a siege catapult out of clothespins? Fuck yes.

Glee: The Music Volume 4. Yay, Glee!

"Changes" by Jim Butcher. Book 12 in the Dresden Files series. Harry Dresden kicks serious ass.

That's it. A ton of cool stuff, both given and received. I wish everyone a safe and sane holiday season. Peace, bitches!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Bioshock 2 (PS3) First Impressions

So I'm sitting here, trying to play Bioshock 2, and I can't. It's in my PS3 and running, but nothing's happening. Let me back up.

About 20 minutes ago, I put the disc in. After first downloading and installing a patch (maybe 3 minutes, total), the game started. But then it had to install. I was treated to some clever posters from Rapture and some suitable time period music while I waited. The 2 minute or so music clip ended and started over at least a half dozen times. There was no progress bar while I waited for the install. Finally, with that done, I was able to choose to start a new single player game on Medium difficulty. The screen then went black and some music started playing.

"Ok, ambience," I thought. "After a few seconds, there's going to be an explosion or something, and it'll drop me into the game." I waited. And waited. And waited some more. When I started typing this, I had been waiting for at least 90 seconds. As I've typed this, the music has continued playing, and then stopped about three sentences back. The screen's still black.

Bioshock 2, you do not impress me positively one bit so far. I am, however, very much negatively impressed.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

D&D Post #9 plus Annotations

The D&D campaign has ended as of last night. But! There's still more logs to post. Here's one from September.

Same players as last time: David the DM and TB the halfling rogue, Kevin the demon-born druid Alyster, Liz the rat fighter Liz, Trish the half-elf sorcerer who has now been named, but I can't remember it, and me the dwarf cleric Kelgar.

This log is available in two parts as streaming audio or mp3 download. Each part runs a little over 2 hours, with the whole session clocking in at about 4 hours and 40 minutes.


Part 1

Part 2

Get Part 1 Here
Get Part 2 Here

Here are the annotations for this session, #9.

Part 1
“Move along, move along. These aren't the statues you're looking for.” 19:30 – Pop culture reference, “Star Wars: A New Hope” film. Obi Wan told the Stormtroopers that these weren't the droids they were looking for, and that they could move along.
“She can't take any more, Cap'n! I don't have the power!” 1:52:10 – Pop culture reference, “Star Trek” TV show. Scotty, the engineer, said this often about the Enterprise.

Part 2
“Did you just say 'Abe Lincoln?' Nah, man, I said 'Hey, Blinken!” 0:12 – Pop culture reference, “Robin Hood: Men in Tights” film. We go on to talk about Monty Python and the Holy Grail, as well as The Princess Bride, which are both awesome movies. You should go see them if you haven't yet.
“It would have worked. If it weren't for you meddling kids!” 57:15 – Pop culture reference, “Scooby Doo” cartoons. Said by every single villain ever after being caught by the Scooby Gang.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

D&D Post #8 plus Annotations

Still behind on the logs. This is another one from August.

Same players as last time: David the DM and TB the halfling rogue, Kevin the demon-born druid Alyster, Liz the rat fighter Liz, Trish the half-elf sorcerer who has now been named, but I can't remember it, and me the dwarf cleric Kelgar.

This log is available as streaming audio or mp3 download. It runs about 3 hours.



Get It Here

Here are the annotations for this session, #8.

“It's an aluminum straw.” 5:57 – From 7-11. It's seriously bad ass. Great with milkshakes, slushes, pretty much any cold drink. And it's only a dollar!
“All we have to do is point to Heath.” 10:30 – I was wearing a shirt that said, “That's what she said.”
“Because it was huge....Thank you.” 21:54 – During the pause, Kevin pointed at my shirt.
“Holy shit, that is massive..... *laughing*” 22:55 - Kevin pointed to my shirt again.
“I have something in my throat..... *more laughing*” 30:32 - Again with the shirt. It's the joke that never gets old.
“So Kevin doesn't like beer.” 40:03 - Kevin had just tried some Sam Adams Boston Lager and made a face like he had seen Two Girls One Cup. Or possibly participated in Two Girls One Cup.
“Like in Empire. The snow speeders around the AT-ATs.” 1:02:48 – Pop culture reference, “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.” Luke defeated the giant AT-AT walkers by firing his tow rope at their legs then flying around them, wrapping up their legs until they fell over.
“The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly over here.” 1:45:28 – Pop culture reference, “The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly.” In the film, the Man with No Name played two factions against each other for his own gain.
“Yeah, I guess I'll have to do that.” “He won't.” 2:33:44 – I haven't done that.
“What do you mean 'these people?' What do you mean 'these people?' Huh?” 2:36:48 – Pop culture reference, “Tropic Thunder.” Robert Downey Jr is the dude playing a dude disguised as another dude.
“Well, whatever. Just start it.” 2:38:05 – I cut the audio that immediately followed. It was from this video clip.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

2009 NFL Playoffs: Conference Championship Results and Super Bowl Prediction

Only one game left this season, and it should be a great one. Before that, though, there were two great games this weekend.

Colts 30, Jets 17
Did I call this, or did I call this? A hard fought battle, and the Jets had control of the game for almost the entire first half. Even after Peyton Manning put together a masterful scoring drive in the 2-minute drill at the end of the first half, the Jets still had their shots in the second half. I have tremendous respect for Darrelle Revis, Mark Sanchez, and the rest of the Jets. They'll be back next year, mark my words. For now, though, the Colts are going to the Super Bowl again, and you've gotta like their chances.

Saints 31, Vikings 28 (OT)
Emotionally draining. That's what this game was. Not as high scoring as I thought it could be (although nearly 60 points between them certainly isn't low scoring), but it was back and forth, in part because neither team held onto the ball particularly well. Ultimately, it came down to overtime, which I can't stand. The Vikings never got the ball, and thanks to some questionable calls (I'm speaking of the pass interference call on what looked to be an un-catchable ball, not to mention the almost complete lack of contact; as well as the completion to Colston that looked like a bobbled ball that hit the ground), the Saints kicked a 40 yard field goal to win it. Whether or not he's back next year, I have tremendous respect for Brett Favre. He showed that he is one of the toughest QBs to play the game, and he never stopped playing to win. But I have to also give credit to the Saints. They did what they've done all season, which is score a lot of points and play just enough defense to win.

2009 Playoff Prediction Record: 9-1

Super Bowl XLIV: Indianapolis Colts vs New Orleans Saints
The number 1 seed in the AFC against the number 1 seed in the NFC. The perrenial playoff team against the team that has previously never been to the big game. No huddle against no huddle. Fast, swarming, attacking defense against the bend but don't break defense. Aerial offense against aerial offense. This is going to be high scoring, high offense, up and down the field all day. The winner will be the team that plays better defense, and I think that's going to be Peyton's team. Manning, that is. Colts win.

Check back in two weeks for the Super Bowl result.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Martin Luther King, Jr

I can't say it better than Bill Harris.

Dr. King himself.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

2009 NFL Playoffs: Divisional Results and Conference Championship Predictions

I just picked a perfect weekend. That's never happened before. While I thought going into the last game we could see the Conference Championship games be held between the 1 and 2 seeded teams, we've got an interloper, and I couldn't be any happier about that. Here's the rundown for this weekend's Divisional games, and my predictions for next weekend's Conference Championship games.

Saints 45, Cardinals 14
Arizona gave up 90 points over two playoff games. Not surprising that they're headed home. I have a feeling the Saints won't have such an easy time of it next week, but for now, they're playing at least one more game.

Colts 20, Ravens 3
Ok, so this game wasn't as close as I thought it was going to be. The Ravens made too many stupid mistakes, and when they did do something right, the Colts turned it around on them.

Vikings 34, Cowboys 3
The Cowboys were hot, but they got cold pretty damn quick. I don't care what anybody says, Jerry Jones is not happy with Wade Phillips right now. Also, this is the third game this weekend that the rested team was not rusty at all. It was also the last time this weekend that was the case.

Jets 17, Chargers 14
San Diego *clap clap* Super Chokers! The Jets scored 17 unanswered points in the middle of the two Chargers TDs. LT couldn't do anything, Rivers threw two picks, and the Jets went for it on 4th and 1 at the end of the game when they were in field goal range. Why? Because they played to win, and that's just what they did.

2009 Playoff Prediction Record: 7-1

Now on to next week's games.


2 Minnesota Vikings at 1 New Orleans Saints
Brett Favre vs Drew Brees. Adrian Peterson vs Reggie Bush. Sidney Rice vs Marques Colston. This game will be a shootout, and while I would like to see Favre go to one more Super Bowl, I would also like to see the Saints get their time in the spotlight. I think it will come down to the home team getting the win and moving on. Saints win a back and forth game.


5 New York Jets at 1 Indianapolis Colts
I really like Mark Sanchez, and Rex Ryan, and just the way the Jets play in general. They've got a great defense, they run the ball, and they smack you in the mouth. I also really like Peyton Manning and the Colts. They've got a swarming defense, and Number 18 manages the game and picks apart defenses like no other QB I've ever seen. Sorry, Sanchez, you'll have another shot at it. This is Manning's time. Colts win a hard fought battle.

Check back next week for results and my Super Bowl prediction.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Thursday, January 14, 2010

2009 NFL Playoffs: Wild Card Results and Divisional Predictions

I correctly picked two upsets, but failed to get the hat trick. In my defense, who knew the Cardinals could score like that? Here's the rundown for this weekend's Wild Card games, and my picks for next weekend's Divisional games.

Jets 24, Bengals 14
There are a lot of good young QBs in the league right now, and Mark Sanchez is one of them. Granted, he got a lot of help from the running game and his team's defense, but he made the throws when they counted.

Cowboys 34, Eagles 14
And the Cowboys finally win a playoff game. Does that mean Wade Phillips gets to keep his job? Or only if they win the Super Bowl? We shall see.

Ravens 33, Patriots 14
Suck on that, Brady! Suck on that, Belichick! This game was actually over by the midpoint of the first quarter, but I enjoyed every damn minute of it.

Cardinals 51, Packers 45
The highest scoring playoff game ever goes to the Cardinals on a strip-sack fumble in OT. Heartbreaking for Packer fans, but damn if it wasn't an entertaining game.

2009 Playoff Prediction Record: 3-1

Now on to next week's games.


4 Arizona Cardinals at 1 New Orleans Saints
This one has the potential to break the highest scoring playoff record again just one week later. The Cardinals may get Anquan Boldin back, but the Saints have Drew Brees. End of season slump aside, the Saints are good. Plus, the Cardinals clearly don't have the defense to stop them, especially in the Superdome. Saints win a barn-burner.

3 Dallas Cowboys at 2 Minnesota Vikings
Can Dallas win another playoff game? Can Favre keep his hopes of another Super Bowl alive? I'm tempted to pick the Cowboys in this one because I think they're the better team (especially right now), but I like Favre too much to pick against him. Plus, if All Day gets going, look out. Vikings win.


6 Baltimore Ravens at 1 Indianapolis Colts
Goddamn is the Ravens defense tough. Their offense, though, is piss poor. On the other side of the field you've got Number 18 and his seemingly endless pool of quality receivers, and a young, fast defense. I could agonize about this pick, but I won't. Colts squeak one out.

5 New York Jets at 2 San Diego Chargers
The safe money pick here is the Chargers. They have a good QB, a decent (if declining) RB, and a couple of good receivers. The Jets just have the number 1 defense and the number 1 running game in the league. I'm going with the Jets in another upset.

Check back next week for results and more predictions.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

2009 NFL Playoffs: Wild Card Weekend

It's playoff time again, and the Raiders are on the outside for the seventh straight year. The Colts are in, but so are the Chargers and Patriots. The defending Super Bowl Champs are out, as are the Super Bowl Champs from the previous year, but the defending NFC Champs are in. Lets get to the matchups and my predictions for the first round of games.


6 Philadelphia Eagles at 3 Dallas Cowboys
The Eagles only lost to very good teams this year (with the exception of the Raiders, all of them made the playoffs, although I stand by the fact that the Raiders are actually a much better team than their record shows). The Cowboys also lost to playoff caliber teams (except for the Broncos and Giants), but they beat the Raiders. For that reason alone, I'm giving this one to the Cowboys.

5 Green Bay Packers at 4 Arizona Cardinals
The Packers started the season pretty up and down, but finished strong with what would have been a string of 8 straight victories except for losing to the Steelers on the last play of the game. The Cardinals have one of the best receivers in the league and a future Hall of Fame QB. I'm picking the Packers, if only because I would love to see Packers vs Vikings one more time.

Byes: 1 New Orleans Saints and 2 Minnesota Vikings


5 New York Jets at 4 Cincinnati Bengals
Carson Palmer is a great QB. Chad Ochocinco is a great receiver. But the Bengals got beat by the Raiders. Mark Sanchez threw 20 picks this year as rookie, and his team is in the playoffs. The Jets also handed the Colts their first loss of the season. J! E! T! S! Jets! Jets! Jets win!

6 Baltimore Ravens at 3 New England Patriots
The Ravens are a tough team, even if they don't have the best record against playoff teams (only 1-6, although they beat the Raiders). As for the Patriots, any reader of this blog knows I can't stand them. Plus, they lost their number one receiver this week. Ravens win.

Byes: 1 Indianapolis Colts and 2 San Diego Chargers

Check back next week for results and more predictions.