I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas. I'm sorry if I've been a bit bleak these past few months. Recovering from a summer like mine isn't an easy process, I promise you that. But hopefully, when the New Year arrives next week, things will get better.
2006 ranks as the absolute worst year of my life, ever, period. I highly doubt that any other year could ever be as bad as this one was. It's my fondest wish to see it die and wither, fading into a brand new year with a clean slate. With this new year comes the requisite resolutions people often make (and break), but this year, mine are a bit different.
In the meantime, my Christmas was pretty OK. For starters, I got my new computer, which FUCKING ROCKS! It's sooooooo nice to be out of the dark ages (c. 2000) and live in the now. I also made off with a three pack of Lather Thingies (But Ironhead!) and a new headset mic courtesy of Chris and Steph, though it will arrive sometime soon. They ended up printing out a picture of it and writing "Not here yet. Soon, though. Happy Decemberween, Love Chris and Steph."
But the best gift of all came from Mom and Dad, who gave me the most awesome queen size flanel comfortor in history! This thing is friggin HUGE! So warm, so comfy, I love it to death. Thanks, Mom and Dad! You guys ROCK!
Now, all I have to do is survive the New Year...
Tuesday, December 26, 2006
I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas. I'm sorry if I've been a bit bleak these past few months. Recovering from a summer like mine isn't an easy process, I promise you that. But hopefully, when the New Year arrives next week, things will get better.
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Not that most of the people who read my blog care, but J.K. Rowling and Scholastic have released the title of Book 7 in the Harry Potter Series: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
For the release game, go to Rowling's website. Or just read the Yahoo story here.
Sunday, December 10, 2006
Writer's block. I hate it.
Every bit of me wants to put these events down to digital paper, to show the world the pictures in my head in plain white on black. To tell a tale about me, the people around me, and recount the details that make the whole thing so text-worthy in the first place.
But right now, I can't...
As much as I'd like to say that Friday night was great, I can't seem to do that, either. Like the idiot I am, I opened a can of worms that I can't get closed again.
Why now, when everything was going so damn well?
And why is it so goddamn hard to just find ONE?!?
Hopefully, in the coming days, I can find my writer's path again, climb over the wall, and get something accomplished with these damned blogs...
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
If you're dumb enough to post this in a public chatroom, then you should have no qualms about me posting it here, complete with your actual screenname:
steeltonpleasure: hi...asian f 29 in HARRISBURG...my bf cheated on me and im looking for a straight guy or 2 guys to punish him then pleasure me..looking for someone near harrisburg who's looking to meet tonight..well endowed a plus but not necessary...must have pic or cam...have pics here...Bonus points go to Mrs. Drumline Lucky for not noticing it, even though I was pointing and making a scene in the room.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Most people hate it when they're left in the dark. I'm no exception. You're given little clues, tiny hints, but are never told what goes on behind the scenes, what reasons there are for you to know so very little.
And it makes you think like crazy.
This time, though, I find myself thinking the opposite. This time, I actually kinda like being in the dark.
Where do I stand? I don't know for sure, but I've been given enough information to formulate a guess. The only thing I can come up with, though, I can't confirm. Usually, that drives me damn near to madness. But this time, it makes me smile. Wait, what? Smile? Yes, smile. For once in my life, not knowing has become the most intriguing prospect my brain has ever encountered.
And you won't tell me. Why do I like that notion?
You've allowed me into a very intimate place in your world. The things you've shared with me aren't to be taken lightly at all. Its an honor to be invited into such a place, to share with you things you don't normally share with anyone else. And not knowing the real reason why you've done this... Well, let's just say it keeps me guessing, wondering...
All I have to go on are your smiles, your playful refusal to answer most of my questions, and of course, more of those little clues that you drop for me to pick up on.
If it's your goal to make me think about you all the time, you've reached it. But what is your next goal? How much more will I be allowed to know? And when will you fill me in on my part in this game? Questions that might not have answers right away, I know.
But why do I like that fact?
You said you want to learn about me. Well, here it is: My life, an open book, even though some of the pages are edited for public consumption. After all, who has to know, right? ;) The only ones who have to know are you and I. You already know the worst of me. Now, you have an open invitation to discover the best of me, and you can find it all on these very pages. You are forever welcome to ask me any question, no matter how personal, and I will answer with 100% honesty to the best of my ability.
An access road, an entire township, and two people in the entire world who know what that means. Just promise me that this game doesn't have a defined ending yet, and I'll be willing to play for keeps.
Don't tell anyone...
Saturday, November 18, 2006
A small selection of pics from my first night DJing at The Days Inn's Roadtrip Lounge in Clearfield, PA. It's been over a year since I last DJ'd there, and I'd say it was a pretty good night, wouldn't you?
Even though, at the back of my mind, I was sad...
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Could it be possible? Could it really be humanly possible? The fact that it very well could be alone keeps me walking forward through the barriors of total life reconstruction.
I hope so. Christ on a stick, I hope so.
Tonight, more than any other night, I feel it.
And it feels GREAT.
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 11:36 PM
Monday, November 13, 2006
I have every intention of visiting this place, with the express purpose of asking one question.So, who's up for a roadtrip with me?
"Where are the drugs? Because I KNOW you guys were smoking SOMETHING when you came up with this $25M piece of crap idea. Now, pass me the bong, if you please..."
Fundies. They should all be rounded up and shipped to a deserted island...
Friday, November 10, 2006
Last year, Justin, his son Ethan and I went up to New York City for Ethan's first movie audition. Of course, he was a ball of nerves, not a good thing for a nine year old in a pressure situation. So, to calm him down, I promised him that he could hit me in the face with a whipped cream pie if he did a good job.
Well, long story short, he didn't get the part, but I still owed him the pie. Later, I discovered that Ethan's brother Jaron was getting into the business as well, so I decided to make it fair and carry the promise over to him as well. The following pictures are the end result.
First, Me, Jaron and Ethan, both with their pies...
First up is Jaron, and here he is wailing me in the mellon with his pie...
The aftermath of Jaron's pie. Willow says I look totally geeky covered in whipped cream *saves that thought for later*...
And now, the original promisee, Ethan, takes his shot at me with his pie. Keep in mind, I was in the middle of telling him to not hit me too hard with it. I barely got the word "hard" out before there was a pie being smacked into my visage...
And finally, the final shot of me. Ethan made sure to rub it into my hair, ensuring that I'd have to go upstairs and take a shower...
And there you have it. A promise made, a promise kept. No matter how silly it is, I have every intention of keeping my word. Ethan and Jaron, you guys are doing a great job with your auditions. Keep it up! Someday, you guys are going to be big time...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 6:12 PM
Friday, November 03, 2006
So anyway, I was talking to Megan tonight (in fact, just about 10 mintues ago), and we got onto the subject of blogs. Of course, this reminded me that, Tuesday night, I had intended to post this entry when I got home. Yes, Megs, another pinball entry. And yes, Megs, I am such a dork.
In a previous entry, I noted that I'd smashed out the high score, finally, at the Twilight Zone pinball game situated between the restroom doors at Electric Avenue. Tuesday night, I completed my pwn4g3 of it by completely taking over the top five scores, including a brand new high! In the same fell swoop, I also managed to knock out a new Lost in the Zone score as well, once again banging out three free credits and most likely frustrating the guy who leases us the machine.
After all, he had again bumped up the replay value, this time to 266,000,000. Sorry, man.
Well, Justin is talking about finally getting a new table in, which makes me happy, because it'll give me a whole new game to learn, play the crap out of, and eventually pwn.
Someday, Megs, you'll come to understand my addiction to the silver ball, even though you'll still probably laugh at me and tell me "You're such a dork." For the record, I love hearing those words...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 6:18 PM
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Saturday, October 28, 2006
I shit you not. Justin was stuck in this exact pose for over 30 seconds, 10 of which were after I snapped this picture. He didn't move from that pose a bit. This is what happens to you when you empty the tip glass and fill it with ale.
And then eat three plates worth of food at the Kylertown truck stop.
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 12:31 PM
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
Monday, October 23, 2006
If you like to gamble, I tell you I'm your man,
You win some, lose some, all the same to me,
The pleasure is to play, makes no difference what you say,
I don't share your greed, the only card I need is
The Ace Of Spades
--Motorhead, "Ace of Spades"
Today didn't look like a good day at all. Honestly, I thought today would have turned out to be my undoing for the coming week. With the way things went, it honestly felt like it had nowhere to go but down.
Last night's malfunction in the booth seemed to foreshadow today. At first... Today, I walked into the Avenue to fix the cause of that major bummer of a crash: Whoever installed the video card didn't put the screw in to bolt the sucker to the case. Thing was sliding around, loose as a goose in there! It got to the point where I had to open the case and hold the card still while I changed cables, not to mention having to lift it up a bit to compensate for a little sag.
With that done in exactly one minute, I settled in to what I thought would be a long defragmentation session: Pinball, peppered with visits back to the booth to check on the progress. To my surprise, defraging the drive took only about five additional minutes, because XP decided that neither drive was fragmented at all.
To top things off, Liza came in. My heart returned to its vise, and I did anything I could to avoid contact with her after our initial chat. I hate being lovestruck.
So poker time rolls around, and of course, Justin forgets to tell me. So, I go up late, and end up being the first to go out. Wonderful, I thought. What a spectacular end to a day that should be declared a natural disaster already. Once again, I returned to my little booth world, making a trip back up to the office to check on things. That's when I got the urge to just play a boatload of pinball.
So, I did. When I finally went back to the booth some time later to check my Yahoo, I discovered that Justin tried to tell me about a second game already in progress. Hustling back upstairs, I settled down in my chair and took some big pots, massing up a good stash of about $45 in $0.25 chips. To give you some perspective, you get $10 worth of them, so it makes a tight, high-action game. And of course, we don't play for cash, so it's all legit.
When Nino got knocked out, he gave his remaining chips to me. "Here's an extra $2 for luck," he said. Well, the blessings of Nino were certainly with me tonight.
Somehow, I managed to survive. Quint knocked out Scuba Steve, and I took Justin down to bring about the final showdown. One hand, my stack versus his. Here's the setup:
All-in time for me, and I'm sitting on an A9s versus a Ks3d. Early position belongs to me, so I'm feeling somewhat good. That's a nice looking stack, isn't it? There's probably about $93 in that pot right there (Quint still has $7 in chips). Justin is ready to flop down three, so he burns one and out they come:
OH! Quint scores a two pair situation, Kings and Deuces! His reaction?
Yep, he's a happy boy. Since I'm taking the pictures, there's no shot of my heart sinking. And things were about to get even worse for the Good Side of The Force, and Quint Vader would bring his Dark Side powers into play on the turn to imporve his already dominating standing:
Oh damn. A trip! Quint's moved up from KK22 to KK33 with his pocket three, and there I am with 22 A high. I need an Ace on the river, and Quint is almost frozen with elation...
He can feel it. He can taste it. He can smell victory in the air. All that remains is the River, and poker destiny for both myself and my foe....
Wait for it...
Wait for it...
Nope, can't show you yet...
Wait for it...
Quint can't believe what he sees:
HOLY SHIT! AN ACE!
Justin, the dealer, can't believe it either!
Having successfully spiked the River, I raise my arms in triumph, not only over a deck of cards (which I now have, with the warring hands turned up, as well as the board), but also what could have ended up a totally shitty day!
In the end, the Good Side triumphed, and I came out on top of an otherwise bottom day. Hopefully someday, a picture like this of me will be with a WSOP bracelet instead of just a nice stack of p lay chips. And the Ace of Spaces turned rightside up. LOL
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 5:16 AM
Sunday, October 22, 2006
The good times are coming back, I can feel it.
After two months, I'm damn near back to where I was in August of '04, when things were alot better than they have been. I'm back to working at Electric Avenue (MySpace pages Here and Here) on a normal basis, and back to doing a good deal of Justin's digital work. This past week was the best one yet.
Thanks to problems within the ranks of a local hair metal band (who will *coughhairforceonecough* remain nameless), I was called upon to DJ last night, and other than one little problem with two little douchebags and one medium problem with the PC, it worked out brilliantly! It was a constant war yet again between two factions: The Dance crowd and the Rock crowd, with minor tremmors from a very small Country crowd. But somehow, I managed to get it together.
Which is great, because last night I DJ'd in place of Justin, with a non-stop dance floor and no real problems, other than the aforementioned warring camps. Throw in an encouraging appearance by someone who will honestly remain nameless, but still pulled some extra strings, and you have a great night. Or rather, I have a great night, cause damnit, I left that place at 3:30am a happy boy.
Plus, for the first time in a while, Karaoke night was on the plus side. Not like it used to be back in the day when it was a party every time we ran it, but it started to feel like that by the end of the night. I just need to build up my singing friends list and get them down to the bar most nights we have Karaoke, and I can reclaim both my job and the glory days of two years ago.
So yeah, I'm a happy boy right now. A slightly wealthy boy, too. You know, I really didn't think life would get back to semi-normal this fast. I was sure it'd take til next year at the earliest. Thank (insert deity here) for small miracles.
Oh yeah. I've got a secret... ;)
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 3:52 AM
Friday, October 13, 2006
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Yes, that's my score. I finally pwn3d the Twilight Zone Pinball machine I've spent so much time (and quarters) on! Funny story, really, too. Places 3 and 4 there, well, they were my best scores up until this past week. Since I was getting so many free games with the replay score set to a paltry 135M, the guy who owns the pin jacked it up. It's now at 203M.
The day after (yes, the day after) he set it higher, I killed it. I had killer luck, hit one extra ball, and nailed all 12 door panels for my first run at Lost In The Zone. After that, not only did I walk away with the LITZ title by a mere 3,719,140, but I bought the extra ball with the replay credit and topped 1B (again, barely, by 26M+)!
Kera and Sue witnessed this glorious occasion when, for the first time in a long time, I ran a mini-game multiball. Caleb just missed it, the bum. Had he walked in but 10 minutes earlier...
So, why am I bragging about a Pinball conquest? Well, it's a little known fact that I'm addicted to these fucking things, especially Data East machines and similar tables by Midway and Sega. I spend forever and a few bucks trying to learn the table inside and out: what lights what, what goes where for what mini-game, the whole nine. Once I learn what does what, I learn my angles and time my flipper shots. From there, it's all luck of the bounce. That day, I cought many, MANY good bounces.
The result? pwn4g3 of the top scores (3 outta 5 ain't bad, It'll take four 750M+ games to pwn the whole she-bang), three free credits (2 GC creds and one LITZ cred), and these pictures. I doubt my score will fall on that particular machine, though the owner might replace it next time he checks the internal stats. By then I'll be ready for a new table to conquor.
Though, I do miss Goldeneye and Jurassic Park...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 5:08 AM
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Well, it's taken a month, but I think everything is finally coming together. Soon, I hope to resume my old post, standing watch over my favorite space like a bum who claims a condemned building. And it's about bloody time, too, given what I've done over the last two years. I mean, come on, free labor? Nuh uh. Get outta town.
My sphere of influence is starting to expand to where it should have been in the first damn place, and it's also starting to encompass new areas, which is totally righteous. I've made many saving throws based on constitution, and my d20 is telling me (more often than not), that I come out in the black alot more than I do the red.
It's the nerd's way of saying things are going well, don't have a cow. Cripes, it's not quite rocket science, right?
Hopefully, next week will herald glad tidings of great awesomeness, and I'll be a happier boy as a result. Albeit a busy boy, mind you, but busy doing what I love to do best: Geeking out. This could even better than that time Mr. Spock...
Nevermind. Even we dorks need sleep without dreams of the USS Enterprise zooming around in our heads at Warp 9.9999999...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 5:30 AM
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
Sunday, September 17, 2006
Sure, I used to do this on the old Ranch. It was called "I'd Hit It," and it showcased girls that, for some reason or another, I'd bang the ever-loving hell out of. Well, this isn't quite like the old gallery, but I'd still hit it all the same. Probably more enthusiastically. Everyone say hello to Amber:
Ain't she just a cutie? Yes, yes she is! Now, here's the trouble. Amber likes to play a little game called "Let's shoot Stewy down." Not a fun game to play if you happen to be Stewy, which I just so happen to be. But still, I perservere, because hey: The chase is FUN! And I think she's worth it. She's really cool, fun to talk to, has a great sense of humor...
...And her bleat just TURNS ME ON!
So there ya go, my little sheep girl. Baaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 7:00 PM
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Well, things haven't really changed too much. I've noticed that quite a bit. Everything's still the same as it ever was, nothing really changes. In some ways (especially one), I'm really glad that's the case. But in others, I'm not so glad. In fact, some similarities aren't as good. One is worse, the one that hurts the most.
Otherwise, so far, I've got it under control.
That said, there's a reason why I've been so quiet. Of course, we all know what Monday was. Not like you could avoid it, right? I mean, come on, let's face it: five years ago, we all lived through a major historical event that had an incredible impact on the world. You can put your conspiracies and the results in a box, tape it shut, and put it in the closet for a while, because when you get down to the reality of it, it was an incredible human tragedy.
No matter who did this, or what our government did to provoke it, the cold hard truth is that many, many people died in a very horrible way that day. And it doesn't hurt that quite a number of people survived to relay what happened, either. No matter how you politicize it, you still can't escape that fact, and many people remember this fact.
Yet here we are today. Nothing's changed. People are no less safe than they were that day five years ago. At any given moment, we could all suffer a similar fate, etching our names into history alongside terrible events. And how would people feel five years from then? Would politicians continuously use that tragedy to persue their own agendas? Would soldiers die in needless wars in your name, too, adding to the tragedy that underlies it all?
Sometimes, we forget those who died. Not those of us who lost someone close, but those of us who's connections were either distant or only through TV, Radio and Internet coverage. Those of us that, at the very least, should feel the human connection, forget all that and polarize ourselves in ways that tend to bring back the pre-9/11 bickering we did over petty politics.
The throes of history have wroght little change.
In the name of those who died, we've fallen farther into a hole dug for us by our forerunners. Our civil rights are beinig infringed upon slowly, but surely. In the name of those who died, we're being spied upon by our own government. In the name of those who died, we debate endlessly with our neighbors over issues that have no other bearing on society that irking someone's fickle morals.
People died. People continue to die. Nothing's changed at all. If anything, it's been made worse.
The death toll in Iraq alone is steadily reaching the death toll at the World Trade Center.
Instead of change, we've only chosen more death. We're no better than those who attacked us.
And we're still arguing over the wrong things: Abortion, stem cell research, what's on TV, things that shouldn't be used as footballs for each side's cause. Sure, it feeds the larger argument, the one we should be paying attention to, but it also clouds it heavily.
We've been blinded to the real reason these people died, and thusly, are doing them little justice. These were our family, our friends. These were people who helped make the world go. They had husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, sons, daughters. They lived real lives, just like ours. They got up, went to work, paid bills, raised kids, took vacations, went to movies - Just like we all do. They were human beings.
And they deserve alot better than what we've managed to give them. We can build all the memorial parks and structures we want. Somehow, the point has still been missed.
There was a lesson in their deaths, and many of us have failed to learn it. Some are learning it the hard way, suffering even more loss. Some are learning it and doing the wrong thing with it. I think that here, five years later, we should start remembering things a different way, the way we should.
Until then, my plan is to keep on doing what I've been doing, because it seems to be working. At least I haven't sewn myself into the wrong clothes...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 2:58 AM
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
I read too damn much. To prove it, here's a list of all the books I've read in the last six months...
- "A Venom In The Blood" by Eric Hoffmann
- "The Bone Collector" by Jeffery Deaver
- "Hannibal" by Thomas Harris
- "Clawhammer" by Sam Lewellyn
- "The Magician's Nephew" (Narnia Book 1) by C.S. Lewis
- "The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe" (Narnia Book 2) by C.S. Lewis
- "The Horse And His Boy" (Narnia Book 3) by C.S. Lewis
- "Prince Caspian" (Narnia Book 4) by C.S. Lewis
- "Voyage Of The Dawn Treader" (Narnia Book 5) by C.S. Lewis
- "The Silver Chair" (Narnia Book 6) by C.S. Lewis
- "The Final Battle" (Narnia Book 7) by C.S. Lewis
- "Demons Don't Dream" by Piers Anthony
- "The Silmarillion" by J.R.R. Tolkien
- "The Hobbit" by J.R.R. Tolkien
- "The Fellowship Of The Ring" by J.R.R. Tolkien
- "The Two Towers" by J.R.R. Tolkien
- "The Return Of The King" by J.R.R. Tolkien
- "2001: A Space Odyssey" by Arthur C. Clarke
- "2010: Odyssey Two" by Arthur C. Clarke
- "2061: Odyssey Three" by Arthur C. Clarke
- "3001: The Final Odyssey" by Arthur C. Clarke
- "State Of Fear" by Michael Crichton
- "Digital Fortress" by Dan Brown
- "The DaVinci Code" by Dan Brown
- "An Inconvenient Truth" by Al Gore
- "Frankenstein" by Mary Shelley
- "Treasure Island" by Robert Louis Stevenson
- "Dracula" by Bram Stoker
- "A Wizard Of Earthsea" by Ursula K. Le Guin
- "The Tombs Of Atuan" by Ursula K. Le Guin
- "The Farthest Shore" by Ursula K. Le Guin
- "Tehanu" by Ursula K. Le Guin
- "The Other Wind" by Ursula K. Le Guin
- "Tales From Earthsea" by Ursula K. Le Guin
- "Magician: Apprentice" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Magician: Master" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Silverthorn" by Raymond E. Feist
- "A Darkness At Sethanon" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Daughter Of The Empire" by Raymond E. Feist and Janny Wurts
- "Servant Of The Empire" by Raymond E. Feist and Janny Wurts
- "Mistress Of The Empire" by Raymond E. Feist and Janny Wurts
- "Krondor: The Betrayal" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Krondor: The Assassins" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Krondor: Tear Of The Gods" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Prince Of The Blood" by Raymond E. Feist
- "The King's Buccaneer" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Shadow Of A Dark Queen" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Rise Of A Merchant Prince" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Rage Of A Demon King" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Shards Of A Broken Crown" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Talon Of The Silver Hawk" by Raymond E. Feist
- "King Of Foxes" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Exile's Return" by Raymond E. Feist
- "Faerie Tale" by Raymond E. Feist
- "The Forever War" by Joe Haldeman
- "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card
- "Ender's Shadow" by Orson Scott Card
- "Shadow Of The Hegemon" by Orson Scott Card
- "Shadow Puppets" by Orson Scott Card
- "Shadow Of The Giant" by Orson Scott Card
- "Speaker For The Dead" by Orson Scott Card
- "First Meetings" by Orson Scott Card
- "Xenocide" by Orson Scott Card
- "Children Of The Mind" by Orson Scott Card
- "The Magician's Guild" by Trudi Canavan
- "The Novice" by Trudi Canavan
- "The High Lord" by Trudi Canavan
- "Harry Potter And The Sorcerer's Stone" by J.K. Rowling
- "Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets" by J.K. Rowling
- "Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban" by J.K. Rowling
- "Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire" by J.K. Rowling
- "Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix" by J.K. Rowling
- "Harry Potter And The Half-blood Prince" by J.K. Rowling"
- "Super System" by Doyle Brunson
- "The Gilded Chain" by Dave Duncan
- "Lord Of The Fire Lands" by Dave Duncan
- "Sky Of Swords" by Dave Duncan
- "Paragon Lost" by Dave Duncan
- "Impossible Odds" by Dave Duncan
- "The Jaguar Knights" by Dave Duncan"
- "Far Horizons" edited by Robert Silverberg
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 6:36 PM
Sunday, August 27, 2006
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Monday, June 12, 2006
Posts of Weirdness Past... If you've found this, congratulations. I thought I buried this one quite well, but alas and alack, here it is.
I'm required to post a lil' something about my new widget over there, the Live Activity feed. So, here's the obligatory Best Ice Cream Makers link, and obligation satisfied. Simple as that.
It's a small price to pay for such a neato widget. I think it'll be fun to pinpoint visitors a bit better than the Clustermap can (though I still <3 that as well)...
Monday, February 20, 2006
Saturday, February 18, 2006
Apparently, today is the 5th anniversary of the death of one Dale Earnhardt, Sr. You know the guy. Hell, you can't go anywhere without seeing some form of #3 merchandise on someone's car, hat, shirt, anything. For some reason, this wee little man with a mustache was the most celebrated "athlete" in his "sport."
By the way, these "athletes" sit in a seat, push pedals with their feet, and turn a wheel.
And this "sport?" Go fast, turn left, repeat.
And then he plowed into a wall. No more Intimidator. No more hero.
Hero of a "sport" that calls disorganized crime it's father, and the bosom of redneck culture its mother.
NASCAR's roots are easily traceable. Let's go back to Prohibition. In the South, Moonshine was the answer to the Government's banning of alcohol. In order to distribute the Shine, hillbillies souped up their cars, pushing the limits of the vehicles of the day in order to outrun the cops. They became known as Shine Runners.
Unsurprisingly, since rednecks are often the center of their own individual universes, boasting began over who's shine hauler was the bee's knees, and races were organized to see just who had the most pimped out ride. Thusly, NASCAR was born.
Go to any given NASCAR event, and just watch people. Tell me what you see. 90% of the crowd there will most assuredly be straight out of Deliverance. Seriously. Watch people smile, then start counting teeth. I bet you won't get to a very high number, and it most certainly won't create a good teeth/adult mouth ratio (which should be at least 20/1).
I'd hoped it would finally die with Earnhardt. The most iconic driver in NASCAR history, killed by the sport he devoted his life to. I'd hoped his accident would raise questions as to the safety issues brought about by racing at that level and kill it. But no, it began to thrive more and more.
And people just won't let go of the fact that Dale is dead. They continue to plaster #3 on everything: Car windows, flags, shirts, hats... It hasn't ended, even five years later. They treat this man like a damn saint, almost to the point of worship. Go into any random redneck home, and chances are you'll see a shrine of pictures and collectibles devoted to the guy.
A sport born of alcohol, sponsored by alcohol, and watched by people who consume absurd amounts of alcohol. There's nothing wrong with that? Somehow, it's hard to miss the connection of "Drinking and Driving."
And I love the local color that NASCAR culture creates. Nothing like getting passed in a double yellow by two good ol' boys in their 15 year old Chevy Celebrity, pretending they're behind the wheel of the #24 Monte Carlo while they've got Merle Haggard jamming full blast in the stereo 8-track, windows down screaming "Yee haw" as they drive past you. Yeah, real smart there, Duke Boys. Might be time to go visit Uncle Jesse and re-up your shine supply. Brilliant.
What these tools fail to realize is that every company that offers them Dale Earnhardt Sr. anything is just trying to cash in on a dead man's fame. They're not doing it for "the memory of a great athlete," they're doing it for George Washington, Abe Lincoln, Andrew Jackson, and Benjamin Franklin. They know that you'll buy anything with a #3 on it. They know you're willing to shell out a good amount of cash because of your "love" of a rotting corpse.
Yep. He's a rotting corpse. He has been dead five years, you know.
Let it go, people. Take the stickers off your windows, take your flags off of the cheap wood "porches" you've built onto your trailers. He's dead. He's not coming back. He's a decaying mass of bones and flesh five years through the breakdown process. Open the coffin, it will smell very bad. He's not on the track, his spirit is not on the track. He does not haunt Daytona. What he haunts is the minds of people who are sick and tired of hearing about him, constantly reminded by your mindless devotion to a dead man.
Please. For the love of humanity. No more #3.
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 11:27 AM
Friday, February 17, 2006
Gee, thanks, Wil. His latest post over at WWdN:IX just had to be about retro gaming, didn't it. Back when I was a kid, I was addicted to video games. They were new, they were super cool (you could play a game... On your TV!), and after the 1983 crash, they were dirt cheap. The system in question here is the Intellivision (Intelligent Television, the second generation of which is shown at right), and yes: I indeed had one of these bad boys. In fact, I had all three versions at one point. Come to think of it, I think my original Intellivision I is still downstairs somewhere...
JC and I were hooked on these consoles. In the pre-NES days, they were the king shit console of consoles. They made Atari's consoles look like they were trapped in the PONG era. Though it's not widely known, the INTVs were, in fact, true 16 Bit systems. At its peak, the INTV family had over 100 games available for it, and consoles of one style or another were produced up until the end of the 80's, well into the NES era.
After the industry crash of 1983, Intellivision alone survived. Other companies had given up on the home console market after a flood of systems and shoddy games polluted the genre, but INTV managed to stick it out. At the time, one of the local pharmacies (and only store within 30 miles to carry games) had begun selling off carts for $2 and $3 apiece, leaving JC and I to up our libraries considerably. One such trip, I remember, brought about the addition of the uber-classic Triple Action to my collection.
Night Stalker. SNAFU. AD&D. Space Hawk. Star Strike. Donkey Kong. Mouse Trap. Utopia. Lock-N-Chase. Burger Time. Quite a few different TRON titles. Ka-BOOM!
Seriously. I just spent the last hour at the official Blue Sky Rangers website. Awesome. Just... Wow. If you're in your mid-20's or older and want to take a great walk through the past, or if you're some punk kid spoiled by your PlayStation 2's and your XBox 360s and needs a lesson on why you have those consoles at all, pay it a visit.
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 12:11 PM
Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 10:36 AM
Sunday, February 05, 2006
I'd like to be the first to welcome Angel to the Blogosphere! She's joing up as a member of our team blog, and will be helping contribute to the project when she finds time and nifty crap to post about. But I'm proud as hell that she's giving it a go. Hopefully, she'll be better at it than Derreck has been... (Something That Makes Sense)
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 11:57 AM
Saturday, January 28, 2006
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
The following is a post I made at the Internet Movie Database's page for the forthcoming Futurama movie. It has to contain the single funniest line I've ever typed in a serious argument, and I've highlighted it specifically. Why? Well, because I think it's pretty damn funny. Anyway, here's why people hate FOX:
Because the suits at FOX are nothing more than a bunch of morons. Need proof?Heh. Hyphenate names suck! Oh. And if you're looking for me on the IMDb boards, I post under AnimationJunkieX...
Canceled: Futurama, Family Guy, Firefly. Three great programs with sizable cult followings. Because they're not shameless ratings fodder like American Idol, the suits at FOX like to "trim the fat," often cutting out what is honestly great programming. Family Guy was saved by us, the fans, by buying up DVDs and giving the suits heck. Futurama, as is evidenced by this entry, is making a slight comeback. Firefly? It was probably the best new SciFi show on TV along with Battlestar Galactica. But FOX suits don't understand what that means.
All they understand is what sells. American Idol sells because complete idiots watch crap like that in droves. Firefly didn't sell because SciFi is still considered a "niche" genre. Heck, they probably think that stuff is just for 30 year old fanboys who still live in Mom's basement downloading poorly hacked nudie pics of Britany-Jo Spears-Federline-Cletus-McHatfield. They don't recognize a little thing we like to call "Fresh, Quality Entertainment." They'd rather feed us an entire season of Simon Cowell being the poor judge of talent he is, pushing it just because people like it when he trashes someone.
Nope. FOX isn't the network it used to be. In the beginning, FOX suits were brash upstarts who gave envelope-pushing programming like The Simpsons and Married... With Children the greenlight and scored big. Now, it's Rupert freaking Murdoch, who's older than dirt, and his money-grubbing, Bush-supporting old fart Country Club buddies who are calling the shots. And all they want to do is make their kids' trust funds a little fatter by pawning off crap.
But we can't blame this all on FOX. No, a lot of the blame rests on the complete tools who think shows like American Idol are "cool" and tune in, week-in and week-out, to watch like the mindless zombies the suits want them to be. The viewing public is just as indifferent to and ignorant of FOX's programming decisions as the people who actually make said decisions. "You want more morons like William Hung, but not a fresh, interesting and thought-provoking show like Firefly? Good on ya. Now pay us."
And you people buy it up like good little ants. Sad.
Shows like Family Guy, Futurama and Firefly BELONG on our TVs. Why? Because it's good entertainment floating in a nasty, brown-tinted sea of crap, complete with that oh-so-pungent Northern New Jersey smell.
And now, because I feel that I have not used enough hyphens, here are a few more:
Now then. That's why people hate on FOX. What's really sad is, those people are in an obvious minority. They're the people who can find something better than American Idol to watch. They're the smart ones.
American Idol Fans/FOX Lovers - You might want to eat your mental Wheaties...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 6:17 AM
Friday, January 20, 2006
Here's the results of my recent upgrading session, which is the precursor to my overall goal: a six-operating-system monster featuring Windows 98, XP Pro, three flavors of Linux, and a final OS as yet undetermined:
Windows 98SE --> Windows XP Pro - A good change, if only for the fact that XP handles XML WAY better than 98 ever could. I got sick of having to restart Yahoo, Winamp, and Firefox everytime the rendering engine went kaput.
Photoshop 7 --> Photoshop CS - The only barrier there was CS required XP. Now that I have XP, I have CS
Goldwave 5.12 --> SoundForge 7.0, ACID 4.0 - Talk about an upgrade! My audio editing will now be MUCH easier with this combo of programs. SF handles recording, and ACID is beautiful for multi-tracking and mixing. Sweetness.
Firefox 1.0.7 --> Firefox 1.5 Beta - When I installed the beta in 98, I lost my scroll bars, my options screen simply wouldn't render, and downloads were clipping themselves at just a few K instead of the Megs they were supposed to weigh in at. Now I have no problems, and can join in the chorus of "It's Awesome" with the rest of my fellow Geeks.
Now, mind you, I didn't upgrade 98 to XP in that sense. I put XP on a seperate partition on my primary drive, allowing me to keep 98 just in case something goes horribly wrong. That, and I wasn't sure if a Celeron 566 with 256MB of RAM would be sufficient to run XP. But once I saw Joker and Angel's machine (a Celeron 450 with 256MB of RAM) take it like a champ, I felt better and went ahead with the installation.
So far, so good. Now I get to download and install my Linux flavors, as well as the mystery OS I haven't decided on yet.
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 3:04 PM
Friday, January 06, 2006
When it c omes to ultra classics, there's probably no one you ask that won't name Dig Dug. And all behold, the translation to the NES was pretty much flawless.
I'm not entirely square on the storyline of the game, but here goes all the same. Rhyme aside, you're some sort of subterranian explorer who's apparently awoken some nasty baddies. Armed only with his high-tech harpoon/air-pump, he digs around just below the surface, trying to inflate the baddies until they pop out of existance
Level after level, the baddies multiply and get faster. The dragon things alone are quite the pain, given their inate ability to shoot fire, and sometimes through a seemingly solid-enough wall of dirt. Alas, it can indeed go through, and it can really mess your day up.
One nice thing, though. You can totally pull a similar version of this tactic on them. If you dig 'almost' all the way through a thin spot, the monster will be prevented from getting at you, but you can still squeez your pump thing through and catch them when they walk up against the thin spot. Beware, though, for as you can see, the baddies have the ability to seeminly transmogrify and fly through dirt, materializing only when they reach a tunnel.
But fear not! They're still vulnerabile in this state, and a well-timed shot from your harpoon on crack will start them on the way to poppitude.
As you progress through the levels, the colors of the soil change, and rocks appear to assist you. If you dig directly under one and a baddie is chasing you at the right time, it'll fall and squish them out of existance. You don't get much point wise for that little maneuver, but hey, You can't argue when baddies die, and you get to up your count of flowers across the surface.
It's a common theme, I know. But kids these days are spoiled. Way back in the day, this game consumed our thoughts and our quarters, and back in the day it was buzzing, booping and popping on our TV screens. You can't mess with an ultra-classic, recognized as such the world over. If you can find an original upright cabinet, kudos on ya, because you have in your basement a part of gaming history.
When you needed a break from PacMan, Dig Dug was the way to go.
Dig Dug - NES - Action/Puzzle
While it's been fun to watch the Nerd-frontation between Wil, Shane, AJ and Annie, sometimes we have to be reminded that underneath all the fun, life is plodding ever forward, and in the end, despite our humor or even our fame, we're all still human.
Sadly, Annie got some of that reality over the Holidays when she lost her step-mom to cancer. Before I go any further, I want to send my thoughts out to her entire family, and a huge hug as well.
But it's odd for me to do that, really. I'm instantly reminded of my Aunt Mardine's battle with cancer, which she sadly lost when I was in the 5th grade. Here was the world's most perfect person - Loving, caring, fun, always a joy to be around, never smoked, hardly (if ever, as far as I know) drank - reduced before my eyes to a frail woman in a cot in her living room. That. Sucked.
But Aunt Mardine isn't the only thought I have. You see, I still have both of my parents yet. And hearing about someone else close to my age losing a parent, well, it kind of makes you come face to face with the mortality of your own loved ones. I can't imagine a world without Jim an Cheryl Jacobson.
And it's very hard to write about it.
Just another one of the worries on my mind these days. I know I don't post as much here as I did on the Ranch, since most of my efforts are directed at Blog Prophyts. But it's one of the few things these days I can find that I can actually write about without fear of backlash. I really wish I could write more. Maybe someday I will.
It'll be a How-To on how not to live your life...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 4:09 PM
You've all heard it at least a hundred times. You know the story, the one where a bunch of kooks want something called "Intelligent Design" taught in schools. The kooks who whine and complain that "evolution is only a theory and hasn't been proven," and that life is so inherantly complex that it "must" have been designed by a higher power. A judge here in Pennsylvania saw it for what it really is: the Biblical (read: Chirstian) idea of Creation, done by the hand of their one and only God, thinly veiled behind a pseudo-scientific language that would make anyone with half a brain chuckle at it at best.
But still, the extreme Right Wing pushes ever forward, emboldened by their victory in Kansas. Even Kansans aren't in Kansas anymore as Creationism is being taught, under the guise of Intelligent Design, in schools thanks to a State School Board ruling on the matter. They're still trying to quash Evolution (a theory, yes, but one backed up by boat loads more evidence than just a book and blind faith). Why are they trying so hard?
Because they fear it. They know it holds more water. And one particular element of Darwin's theory scares them most of all.
Oh yeah, it applies to Humans, too. After all, we had Neanderthal man, which gave way to Cro-Magnon man.Cro-Magnon gave way to modern humanity over a short time, and we have in turn evolved into extremely sophisticated, technologically advanced and highly knowledgable versions of our former selves. Since the dawn of modern man, though, our evolution has been less physical and more mental. We've begun to use the power of the human mind and thought process to conquer things evolution would take millenia to overcome on its own, if the current rate were to hold firm.
The belief in a "supreme being" might have worked in a time when humans failed to grasp the reality of the world around them, when we were just beginning to understand what it was we were dealing with. Humans are prone to fearing things they don't quite understand. Early on, it was the elements: fire, lightning, severe storms and natural disasters. Why did these things happen?
"God is angry with us!" the cloth would cry. "We must be more obedient!" Bang. Instant social control. Preying off of human fear in order to establish power for the select few.
But then, we began to understand. Slowly, yes. But failed sciences like Alchemy led to the true science of Chemistry. Philosophy gave way to modern rational thought. Mathematics were used to give things order and explain more complex principles. While mythology still held great influence, we were slowly beginning to understand our world, and by default, becoming less fearful of it as well.
Back then, it was accepted belief that, as God's supposed children, we were at the center of the universe: Everything, including the Sun and Moon, revolved around us. "Not so," said people who sat down and gave it some thought. "We revolve around the sun, as do the other planets we know about!"
"Heresy!" cried the Church! "We are arrogant and believe ourselves to be just that special!"
Now, try and tell someone today that everything in the universe revolves around the Earth. What do you think their response will be? I'll bet dimes to dollars your ass will get pointed and laughed at, and that person will run and tell the better part of the Milky Way galaxy what a complete retard you are.
Why? Science. Things that were once decried as Heresy were challanged as Theory and proven as Accepted Fact through Science.
Once upon a time, people thought the Earth was flat. This had nothing to do with Religion, other than the fact that the people who believed this shared this common flaw with Religion: Ignorance.
"Not so," said Christopho Columbo (Christopher Columbus), "I bet I can sail to China and India by going west!
"You're nuts," said the people. But the Queen financed him, and he sailed. He didn't know there were two continents in the way, and that the northern one had been discovered hundreds of years before by Scandinavians. That in turn led to the journey of one Ferdinand Magellan, the first man to circumnavigate the Earth, proving that it was, indeed, round.
Science scored a secular victory, challanging with Theory and proving as Accepted Fact.
God (and like him, Allah, Zeus, etc.) has always been thought to live in the "heavens above." Back then, we didn't understand the sky too much, because we simply couldn't get up there by ourselves. Traditional religious teachings on death always talk about our souls "ascending into heaven." This would constitute a rise. Sure, now you can say that its a metaphore for moving from this world to the next, not litterally up. But back in the day, that was the accepted truth. God lived in the skies.
"Not so," say the scientists. "Above us is an atmosphere, which contains the air we breathe. And beyond that is a seemingly endless void of nothing, pockmarked by things like rocks and big burning balls of gas, with no breathable air to speak of!"
"Heresy!" Again the Church tried to keep its stranglehold on an unsuspecting and uneducated people.
And again, the Church was challanged by Theory, and eventually proven as Accepted Fact when we developed the power to leave the Earth and travel beyond the clouds.
Walk up to anyone today and tell them that God has a mansion in the clouds, right up there (pointing to a random cloud) all for you when you go to meet him. At the very least, you'll get brushed off with a sigh, a smile, and the rolling of your subject's eyes.
"But... But... But... The Earth is only 6,500 years old, and people lived alongside dinosaurs, which Noah had on his Ark, and..."
"Not so!" Science has proven that the Earth is a metric assload older than just six and a half millennia.
New trains of thought are replacing old, outdated trains of thought.
Mental Natural Selection.
This is why the Church is afraid. This is why they're trying to exert their influence in this manner. It's a last ditch effort to save itself from becoming obsolete. Darwin's "theory" of Natural Selection states that the weaker version of something dies off as the stronger version comes to dominate. Religion is an ages-old concept based on fear. Science has grown by leaps and bounds, especially in the last 200 years. In that time, Science has undercut Religion time and again, and has come to a point where it is ready to overtake its predicessor as the dominant train of thought.
The extreme Right knows it, and they're trying one last time to sound the cry of "Heresy" by being sneaky and trying to duck around a provision, written into the Constitution by the God-fearing founders of this country, specifically designed to discourage the promotion of a single religion. After all, this country was founded on Religious Freedom, not to be a single-faith theocracy with that faith's doctrines taught on a mandatory basis.
Sorry, Fundies. But schools are paid for by Tax Dollars. Tax Dollars are collected and distributed by The Government. And The Government isn't allowed to get involved in Religion thanks to The Constitution of the United States. That's why your Churches don't pay any Tax Dollars. No Tax Dollars, no Influence. And just in case you thought Seperation of Church and State is nowhere implied in that great Constitution of ours, here it is in white on black:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.That pretty much covers it. If the US Constitution says that the US Congress can't do it, you've got a problem. No State can override the Constitution. And Congress can't override it, either. Seriously. Are you going to commit political suicide by trying to ammend the Bill of Rights?
You see, Public Schools are just that. Schools run by Public Funding. Teaching the Christian idea of Creationism, over the Theory of Evolution or any other Religious idea, is the sponsoring of one particular brand of religion using Public (Government) funds. It's unconstitutional.
In short, you're going to fail. Again. And this time, your attempt to use Science's strategy against it by attacking instead of being attacked first, will be the final nail in your coffin. Say a prayer for yourselves. The next "victim" of Natural Selection is you...
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 12:57 PM
Thursday, January 05, 2006
In a half hour, I'll be somewhere I really don't want to be right now. But I can't avoid it. That's what sucks.
For what will most likely end up being the next four hours, I'll be sitting in a huge room, shaking like a leaf, sweating to beat the band and trying (most likely in vain) to keep my sanity, or what little of it I have left.
A bit of advice: Card.
Posted by Eric Jacobson at 8:05 AM
Monday, January 02, 2006
Ahhh, the classics. You can't fade them at all, and they never really go away. There once was a time when we pumped quarters into arcade cabinets like heroine junkies shoot smack. These games were addicting, even with their simple gameplay structures and concepts. Mention the word Arcade to anyone and a select few names will come immediately into their minds: Pac Man. Qix. Q*Bert.
Ahh, Q*Bert. Lord knows what he is. Basically, he's a hushpuppie with legs, a dust buster-sized schnoz, two huge eyes, and a potty mouth. Yep, that's right, Q*Bert cusses like a sailor in port after six months at sea. But hey, all you right-wing fundie game haters, you don't have to worry. Q*Bert's vulgar display of ouch is limited to a few choice symbols and a bit of medium-high pitched mumbling.
The premise is simple: Maneuver Q*Bert up and down the pyramid, changing the colors of all the available steps to the desired color. Simple, right? Wrong. You've got plenty of problems while you're jumping around, but thankfully, a bitch ain't one. You do, however, have to worry about bouncing balls which will land on your head and induce a swearing fit that would make R. Lee Emery blush. But balls aren't the only things out to get your... your... hushpuppie with legs. There's Coiley, the tweaked out purple snake who thinks he's a Tigger. He'll actually track you down and mush you, so you'd best watch out.
Gravity is your enemy here, but your enemies don't always abide by the laws of Issac Newton. Say hello to Ugh and Wrong-Way, two two-dimensional beings working in three dimensions with one-dimensional minds. They'll hop on the sides of the pyramid's cubes, swiping and clawing at you as they pass. But fear not, for there is a method of escaping all this purple-pixeled peril.
Flying discs are positioned at the sides of the levels, and hitching a ride on one will send you to the top of the pyramid. If Coiley is in hot persuit, he'll bail off the side, netting you some bonus points. There's also the little green ball. Snag it and your enemies will momentarily freeze, allowing you to take care of your business before you go hopping mad or get out of a tight space.
Green isn't always good, though. There are Slick (with the shades) and Sam (with the hair), two green teardrop guys who will reverse the colors of the blocks you've covered, forcing you to go back and do them over. Fortunately, though, these two can't kill you, and you get a few extra points if you catch up and tag them.
OK, so Tomb Raider it ain't. But hey, if you're a sucker for geometry and odd controller angles, then Q*Bert is right up your alley. The NES version is a nearly faithful port of the Arcade classic.
Q*Bert - NES - Arcade Port