At the start, you play as a paperclip maximizer. You’re in a world with resources of various types floating around, and other maximizer robots that try to eat you and turn you into some other resource, something other than a paperclip. We can add whatever fun little floating things we think of. maybe super-special resources you can use for upgrades to your maximizer, I dunno.. Everything, though, can eventually be turned into a paperclip. Provided you can get your mitts on it and provided it doesn’t eat you or blow you up while you’re working. Continue reading →
I grew up aware of M*A*S*H. I was just over a year old when the show ended on February 28, 1983. Thirty years ago. But it wasn’t until I was in high school that I fell in love with M*A*S*H. I honestly cannot remember what happened – in retrospect it feels like one day I didn’t really care about it and then out of nowhere I was obsessed with the show and was taping episodes off of TV. I know that this must have happened around 1998 because one of the things that drove my family crazy was that I would spend hours copying the M*A*S*H episodes off of VHS, onto the computer, edit out the commercials, and then copy the episodes back onto the tapes. This allowed me to fit 5 episodes onto a tape instead of 4. And it removed the commercials. In any case, I only figured out how to use the Avid Cinema software that allowed that to happen in 1998. By the time I graduated high school and was leaving for college, I had over 30 VHS tapes full of episodes of M*A*S*H. This was a few years before DVDs of TV shows became a thing. Continue reading →
Ah, the days gone by. I remember first playing Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse (known in its original Japanese as悪魔城伝説, or Devil’s Castle Legend) on my Nintendo Entertainment System in 1990 and marveling at how the series had grown and changed. I’d been a fan since receiving the original Castlevania as a gift a few years earlier, loving it and hating it at the same time. I loved it because of its themes, its characters, its music and its simple but engaging story, and hated it for being an immense challenge with play control limited enough to cause controller-tossing rage after mistiming a jump for the eight zillionth time. The more RPG-like Simon’s Quest was fun, but didn’t quite hold the same fascination for me as the original. Dracula’s Curse brought that fascination back and raised it a level. Continue reading →
When I was a kid in the early ’80s, home video was still a relatively new invention. I remember getting our first VCR and going to the video rental store – the stores had a huge influence on me and can be blamed or praised for my love of movie posters and decorating aesthetic of plastering every empty surface with movie posters.
My strongest memories are of Yucaipa Center Video, which was next door to the Pizza Chalet. So a good weekend would include a trip to pick up some pizzas and rent a few videos. I still remember when YCV shut down during my senior year of high school – in anticipation of the new Hollywood Video opening across the street (incidentally in the former-bank building that had also formerly been my dad’s law office). There was another video store in town that had $1 rentals on Mondays, and I remember we used to rent the same movies over and over again (especially NEWSIES, SHIPWRECKED, and WILD HEARTS CAN’T BE BROKEN). There was also Calimesa Tower Video which was walking distance from my best friends house and I think is now a clothing store. We rented every Pauly Shore movie as it came out. Continue reading →
I used to be very cynical about the Academy Awards. I assumed that the voting process was for show and that the awards were given out on a basis of what’s-the-safest-winner. I still talk about ‘them’ ‘giving’ the award to particular winner, but now I don’t mean it in quite the same way. What I mean when I say ‘they’ll give so-and-so the award’ is ‘the voting body of the Academy will vote in such a way that so-and-so will win’. And I used to think it was all about politics. But now I know that it’s almost impossible to predict who will win in any way other than a process of elimination. It’s easier to justify why a person or movie will not be voted for than it is to guess why anyone WOULD vote for someone/some movie. Continue reading →
I wasn’t a huge fan of James Lipton’s Inside the Actor’s Studio, and in fact, I’m not even sure if it’s still on the air. I thought Lipton could sometimes be a little “Dance, Monkey!” — particularly on theepisode where he had the cast of The Simpsons on, and the bulk of his questions seemed to be “So, can you do Apu now? How about Homer? Marge? What would Bart have to say to that?” — when you’ve got a cast of talented voice actors and comedians, it seems like such a waste to have them just do the voices instead of asking them real questions. Likewise, the John Goodman episode was a little painful where Lipton goaded Goodman into dancing like in Blues Brothers 2000 despite the fact that it was clearly causing Goodman physical pain. But the show did have its moments too — and one of the more inspired moments was the seven questions he asked everyone. Continue reading →
What do you do when you’ve been making fun of someone on a TV show for years for being creepy, and turn out to be right?
I’m having that uncomfortable reaction right now. When I worked graveyard shift and Dale worked swing shift, we’d often hang out on Friday nights/Saturday mornings and watch lots of stuff — movies, episodes of MST3K and SCTV, and the night would always involve watching TBN’s children programming. The crown jewel of the programming as far as we were concerned was watching Joy Junction back to back with The Gospel Bill Show. Gospel Bill had much higher production values, so while it was fun in its corniness, it wasn’t nearly as entertaining as the very low-budget Joy Junction. Dale and I would watch this, and comment how a lot of the folks on the show had a really odd vibe, like it was a motley crew of deviants and murderers. Continue reading →
Stupid Idea: So, whenever I hear a song title that has the word “Dancin’” or “Dancing” in it, I always mentally replace it as “Danzig”. You know, Glenn Danzig, the lead singer of the Misfits. And Samhain. And Danzig. And generally humorless metal guy. Apparently I’m not the only one, as Ken Stringfellow of the Posies‘ upcoming solo record is called Danzig in the Moonlight, so this isn’t a terribly original idea. Continue reading →
A Separate Area, Apart From Where the Captured Pieces Are
Well, this is quite easy. Just set up the chess board as you would for a regular game, ONLY with the quarter in the exact center of the chess board, on the 4 corners of the 4 center squares. Continue reading →