Totally went to a skid pan day and slid the shit out of my car. As soon the skid pan dried out though, it was tyre smokin’ drift action. Not that I managed to get any of that on camera, because the only person who filmed any good footage of cars today was me, and I couldn’t film and drive at the same time.
So, I have a new job. Well, I mean, I started a new job two weeks ago and this is my first day since starting that hasn’t gone 100%.
“But, threeze”, I hear you ask, “Isn’t it Saturday there? Why are you working on a Saturday?”. Well, dear loud-mouthed reader, I am not working. I am at the house of The Parents waiting patiently for the convertible car I borrowed to dry out, as it developed a bit of a leaky roof and flooded. As I was meant to be using it to travel inter-state today, it has taken the shine off what was a lovely day.
But, as they say, every cloud is a bastard just waiting for you to not notice him before opening the taps on your new suit, there is a silver lining here. My new job is actually quite demanding, and as such, I haven’t had a chance to catch up on my blog reading, twitter or anything of those other things I used to fill in an eight-hour workday with. And I have been coming home so exhausted, I’ve been watching the idiot box and nothing else. Which means sitting here on my back side all day has given me the chance to catch up on things. And one of the things I did catch up on was How To Destroy Angels, which I knew about, just didn’t know much about. See, I figured it was a collaboration between Mr and Mrs Trent Reznor. And it is. And they have a single out.
Back when the Sony PlayStation was The Hottest Thing, the hottest game was Gran Turismo. You may have heard of it. Because of it, and it’s sequels, I came to fall in love with the S13 Nissan Silvia. And drifting.
Then, and I don’t know when this happened because I am research and effort averse, drifting became popular in the US of A. In fact, it became so popular that it is pretty much NASCAR now, just with more turning and tyre smoke.
And I no longer like it. I feel icky just thinking about how much I used to love the idea of it. How much I spent on import DVDs and Initial D memorabilia. And let’s not forget the money it cost to keep my own S13 on the road.
And then, just moments ago, I fell in love with a trailer for a TV show that is pretty much crime fighting, and drifting. Please enjoy The Driver:
Don’t you just hate it when someone updates his or her blog just to tell you that they are not updating at the moment because they got a new job/girlfriend/limb? Me too.
Which is why I am posting this update to say that I have been super busy of late, but I will be updating a little more frequently. But they will probably be one-liners, or jokes, or links to things that only I find of interest.
Today, I would like to link to these shoes:
Why would I link to them, apart from them looking totally and utterly awesome?
Well, because a select group of awesome people on Twitter went around and collected some cash and bought me a pair. And they are currently winging their way to me. In fact, the package tracking site tells me that Auspost has them at the moment, which means I should hopefully get them in the next six months.
I am, to put it bluntly, fucking excited. I would name and shame the fellows and fellowesses who were so cool as to get them for me, but I think they know who they are and know that I *gulp* love them.
It’s a New Year. And it has apparently been a new year for quite a while. Three months, I see. I should stay in more. That way I would have more time to blog about the things I haven’t been getting up to. Instead, I have been getting up to things.
“Oh”, you ask, “what sort of things? Interesting things? Exciting things? Things I might want to read about?”
Well, I have just gotten back from Melbourne, the city I love and want to move to. And before that I was in Sydney. And before that I was in Buenos Aires (which I hated more than microwaved steak). And before that I was in Ushuaia (which is just lovely) and before that I believe I was on Antarctica.
Antarctica? Yep. Sure was. Snow, ice and stinking penguins. Are you aware of how bad those lil’ fuckers smell? Because they smell horrid, terrible, revolting, disgusting and putrid. Damn cute, though.
So, why was I on Antarctica? Well, I was the +1 on an adventure cruise my mmmMother booked. And whilst the average age of the cruise goer was about a million, and the only people my age were a married couple who argued a lot and a New Yorker, I did manage to make friends and enjoy the social aspect of things. But the real fun was had on Zodiacs and on the Antarctic continent itself. Oh, and it helped that the people running the thing were fun, interesting and in more than once case, very, very cute.
But, I will leave Antarctica alone for the moment as there are diary entries to be read and reviewed and turned into something worthy of writing down, and this update is not that place.
This update is the place where I tell you about Faith No More. If you were alive in 1993 and not a moron, you may be aware that they were the single greatest rock band of their era. Yes, I know, they ushered in the age of the rap/nu-metal rape of civilisation, but whilst those that followed them were crass, unimaginative and horrid, Faith No More were amazing. Great, thumping bass lines, fantastic drumming, wonderfully out-of-place keyboards and screeching guitar* riffs**, all topped off with the single greatest voice to ever grace rock music. Ever. I dare you to even suggest someone in modern rock who can approach how great Mike Patton is. And that’s even before you tackle his range, his songwriting skills and how much he likes to take his cock out at shows.
Anyway, back when I was a Young Man, half a life time ago (sadly, true) I really liked Faith No More. King for a Day… Fool for a Lifetime was one of my two favourite albums. I completely loved the fuck out of it. And when they put out Album of the Year and toured it around Australia, I just had to go and see them.
And I did. And it was great. Even getting some girl’s steel-capped Doc in my temple and falling to the ground unable to breath (for a few moments) was worth it.
And then they broke up. Which was sad. Because as much as I love Mr Bungle and Fantômas and Imperial Teen and Tomahawk and Peeping Tom nothing came quite as close to perfection as Faith No More did. Nothing.
So I pushed them to the back of my mind for a few years, until I got out King for a Day… Fool for a Lifetime from my CD rack*** one day and started listening to it again. It got the point that I would carry the entire Nine Inch Nails back catalogue around with me, and King for a Day… Fool for a Lifetime. I once wrote a short story that only used lyrics from Faith No More songs as dialogue. They may not have been still around, but they were still having an impact on me and those poor saps who had to read my poor fiction.
Then, one day, they announced they were reforming. And I was happy. And then they announced they were only playing festival dates in Europe. And I was disappointed. And then my friend said she was going to the UK and Europe to see them AND Nine Inch Nails play. And I wanted to murder her quietly in her sleep.
And then, they announced they were playing the Soundwave Festival here in Australia. I went to Soundwave 09 because Nine Inch Nails were playing, and lets just say that as great as the music was, the festival itself had a lot of shortcomings, all of which I was later told was the result of the venue, Eastern Creek Raceway in Sydney. I had intended to see the Melbourne shows too, but for reasons that are too pathetic, I didn’t.
But, FAITH NO MORE! So I bought tickets to both the Sydney and Melbourne festivals. And I was happy. Then when I was in New Zealand, the band announced sideshows, so I had to ask the friend (who I thankfully hadn’t murdered in her sleep) to get me tickets to those. And she did. Because she is pretty awesome and is no longer in any real danger of being murdered by me.
Those shows all took place in the past week, so I have been totally and utterly fucking tired from lacking in sleep and still trying to go to work each day. But, I did get to see Faith No More four times, Neil Hamburger once, and Eagles of Death Metal three times. All such very good things. And I now can say that Soundwave is great, Eastern Creek is shit. The Melbourne Showgrounds were amazingly well sorted out, and the venue really makes a mockery of how crap the Eastern Creeks facilities were.
Now, are you familiar with Chatroulette? No? Really? Should I explain it or are you familiar with Google? Because I think you should Google it if you don’t know what it is. I’ll be here when you get back.
Right, well at the Melbourne Soundwave show, Faith No More had Chatroulette setup on stage so they could broadcast/stream their show to randoms. And so they did.
Here is some footage I took of it:
The crowd goes nuts at one point because there was a guy in just a penis pump making perfect penis pump circles with his gyrating penis. Tops!
In summary, FAITH NO MORE!
* Proto-hipser-glasses wearing guitarist who was famously fired via fax.
** Current shredder.
*** The flat surface that surrounds my TV, and it only contains CDs and DVDs, no cases.
Social Networking In Canberra – an opinion and nothing more*.
I live in Australia’s least liked Capital City. Sydney hates us because it wants to be the Capital, Melbourne hates us because The Daily Rag says so (maybe, I don’t read the papers, but Crikey doesn’t seem to mind us that much). One of the things that strikes me as odd about Canberra is the way the City has retracted over the years.
Retracted socially, that is.
In the 1970s and 1980s there were clubs, bars and nightspots all over the place. Not just in Civic (or Canberra City, or whatever it is officially designated this year). Today, if you want to go and hang with your real-life friends, you have to drive/bus it into Town. Yes, there are a few bars in Belconnen and Woden (and I am aware of the infamous “taverns” in Tuggeranong) but they fill up rather quickly, are full of locals and, frankly, fail at being anything other than suburban bars and/or clubs.
So it strikes me as odd that Canberra Social Networkers, the self-congratulatory wankers who dominate any search results for “Canberra” or “Windbag” on Twitter, attempt to be social and network here, in Canberra. Where do they go? What do they do? Well, I reckon nowhere. They stay digital, etheral.
I get the feeling that most of them have found a small audience of people with nowhere else to be either, and so they preach to the converted (I at least only preach to the perverted, using a comination of Twitter, Tumblr and some glow sticks). I also have a sneaky suspicion that some of the better known and “Internationally” recognised fellows and felloweses are sad loners taking full advantage of any time in the sun they can have. I could be “Internationally” recognised too, it’s not difficult; all you need is a van, a backyard big enough to put some tents up and a collection of women you can scare into submission.
Doesn’t mean it’s good, though.
* Because, the only thing Social Networkers have is an opinion. And this is only mine, and it will invariable mutate as I become more or less interested in what people are saying about me. Also, if you start following me, you better prove that you are not a spammer or if you are a spammer, you better be a hot one.
Welcome to the first in a possible series of one – The Busy Gamer Review.
As a modern day male with a full time job, I am no longer able to spend every waking moment playing GTA or Half-Life 2 or Sensible World of Soccer. I would very much like to be able to, but I can’t. I can’t carry my Xbox 360 and Wii around with me either, so my gaming is “on the move”. This used to mean I carried a Nintendo DS around with me, but I was too ashamed to use it in public, which means the lion’s share of my game time is spent on the iPhone.
Which means I have bought many (too many, in fact) iPhone games. And a bunch of them have been total shit.
Some, however, have been great. They are:
Flight Control – Draw lines to make planes not crash.
Real Racing – Drive fast cars on a race track, fast.
Wolf3d – Force yourself to remember how small a window you had to play this in when it came out, then realise the iPhone screen is about the same size. Wonder, out loud, how far we have come.
Grunts – Cannon. Fucking. Fodder (minus the theme song).
Pinball Dreams – Hey, I had an Amiga. It was rad on there, it’s rad on here.
(I was going to put up links to the iTunes Store, but Apple can go suck a fuck right now, but if they stop being dickholes soon, I will re-consider).
Of the others, well, read my review of the re-re-release of Monkey Island to understand how I feel. Go on, do it. It’s below. Or click here.
But I am too busy to give a fat flying fuckstain about how I am being unfair to Monkey Island, I feel that with a mobile platform like the iPhone (and the cheap prices of the games), if a game doesn’t get it’s hooks into me early, or has an off-putting control scheme, I will just ditch it.
So, first off, Space Invaders Infinite Gene – Ignore anything you know about the great-granddaddy of shooters and just buy this game. Do it. It has this amazing vector look, sounds great and controls well. And it changes how you think about Space Invaders.
So, second off, Civilisation Revolution. I downloaded the Lite version. Then I deleted it. Helpful hint, if it takes 3 fucking second for an “OK” button to register a press, don’t expect the rest of the game to move at all. This thing looks great, sounds brilliant, plays like underwater squash. Ignore. Ignore.
Or just wait till they come out with an update that works.
So, LucasArts have revamped, re-animated, re-scored and voiced a new version of the classic The Secret of Monkey Island. And you can get it for Xbox 360, Windows or the iPhone.
I went with the iPhone path, because, hell, a point’n'click adventure makes more sense with a touch-screen than a gamepad, right?
Alas, whilst the game looks and sounds amazing, the controls are totally, utterly and horribly fucked. The developers have kept the mouse cursor part of the original game design, and whilst they have tarted up the UI*, the cursor doesn’t follow your finger on screen. It has a lag that increases the more you move. So you have to move finger, stop, lift finger, touch cursor (which is nowhere near where you want it to be) and drag again. Pity yourself if you need to click near the edge of the screen, because your finger will slide off the touch-sensitive area and the frustration will end with you boiling your iPhone in a Pryex jug in the office microwave oven.
So, my advice? Don’t buy it… yet. Hopefully LucasArts will fix the controls and push out a 1.1 version hat makes it work better on the iPhone. Until then, just play Flight Control.
P.S. Unrelated, kinda, but I found the coolest paint program ever. It’s called Grafx2 and it mimics the Amiga application Deluxe Paint. Why bring this up? Well, back in the dark old past of the late 1980s, LucasArts converted Deluxe Paint from the Amiga to the PC. And they used it for all of their adventure games. In fact, it is how Guybrush got his name, as Deluxe Paint would append “.brush” to the name of a file, and the LucasArts artists just happened to name one “guy”. So, “guy.brush” become Guybrush.
* You can play using the original sounds, graphics and interface. Which is rad. What is not rad is that the cursor lag appears here too, and they have futzed with the screen resolution which means on-screen text looks all jagged and crap. Shame.
I was never really an outdoorsy kid, as a child growing up. I used to spend my Winters rugged up all nice and warm in front of an Amstrad or an Amiga whilst my friends and neighbours took the opportunity of a cooler clime to fall down mountains on thin sticks of wood.
But as I got older, I found myself spending less time roasting marshmallows over a red-hot CRT/PowerBook and more time with actual, real people. People who did want to go outside. People who would spend money to strap sticks of wood to their feet. Sticks of wood that, over the years, have got wider and wider until they joined together to become one piece – the snowboard.
And yesterday, I did the same. I took a trip from my base to the snowy delights of the Perisher Valley. I bought an expensive jacket, some in-expensive waterproof pants, and then hired a really cheap (yet brand-new and apparently good quality) snowboard, and threw myself down a hill.
Over and over. Again and again.
And I loved it.
So, now I am looking at going again, really soon. Whilst I will likely continue to rent boards this season, I did have a quick look at obtaining either a cheap new board and bindings, or a second-hand/ex-demo setup. In looking around multiple places I found out about Burton’s “Love” range.