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Archive for June, 2011

How to Fix L4D

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

So recently I started playing Left 4 Dead 2 again.  It’s a fun game, I can hop in and out depending on my schedule, and it’s got zombies.  What’s not to love?

Well for starters the boatload of assholes that sign on for no other purpose than to try and ruin everyone else’s day.

In any sort of online game you get a certain percentage of folks who just want to screw with everyone else, and nearly every one of these games has a mechanism for discouraging that sort of behavior.  One of the most frequently seen of these mechanisms is the vote kick.  And like many other online games L4D has the ability for players to vote an annoying team member out of the game.

The problem is that unlike a lot of these other games, the amount of players is very low.  Only four per team, in fact.  So if you have two assholes who like jerking everybody else around your only choice is to leave the game yourself.  And while I am fine with the theory of “if you don’t like the players you are with, then find some others”  this does not address the long term problem.  Namely: There are no long term consequences for being a d-bag and making the entire game less attractive to customers.

The flip side is any system designed to punish players will probably be abused by the same players that we are worried about.

I think I have a relatively simple and elegant solution to this problem.
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And All I Got Was Royalties on a This T-Shirt

Sunday, June 26th, 2011

Michael Z Williamson has licensed Skippy’s List and is selling t-shirts on his retail site, Cloak & Dagger. So if you’ve ever wanted a piece of clothing that earns you instant respect with all members of the military, protects against weasel attacks, and effectively triples your sexual charisma simply by touching it*, then you need to go to his site right now and buy one. If you buy five, Michael will make a character based off of you in his next novel.**  If you buy ten, he’ll give your character a sex scene.***

*Claims expressed here as to the about the t-shirt’s powers have not ever been successfully tested.  Especially the sexual charisma part.

**Note: I did not run this idea past Mike in any way shape or form. He might, in fact, be really mad at me for this.

*** Ditto. It should be noted that you should probably not do this sort of thing to a writer who also has a knife and gun accessory store unless you are a professional smart ass and happen to live really far away from him.

Epic win…

Friday, June 24th, 2011

I’m a fan of interesting remixes… This is one of the best I’ve found yet.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZBuYbKgvQI

Close But No Cigar

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Incredible music video from the gang that brought us Ren & Stimpy.

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Captain Taylor Trilogy

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

My old Army roommate wrote a bunch of books. I’ve graciously allowed him to plug his book on my site.

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Random Thought on Current Events

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

I’ve had quite a bit going on and just haven’t really taken the time to come up with anything useful for the site lately. And so I think I’ll just do another current events post.
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The Few, The Proud, The Machines…

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

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Adventures in Parenting, Part 2

Monday, June 13th, 2011

So it has been a while, I know, but it has been a productive while. My wife gave birth to two beautiful baby boys (thought we were having trips, but wound up with twins), and they are now close to ten months old. They are adorable little boys with smiles, and cute drooling, and addictive laughter, but they are two little boys. There are just some things about twins that nothing can prepare you for.

  1. You can be a second circle master ninja capable of walking across water without even making a ripple, but the sound of your very presence WILL wake up one of the twins, and it will always be the one you are not picking up.
  2. You may be able to juggle fifteen objects in four different directions simultaneously, but there is no way for a father to simultaneously feed twins.
  3. When playing with either child, tossing them in the air and catching them eight inches from the ground is a good way to make their mother very, very mad at you.
  4. Provided you help keep them limber, babies CAN touch the back of their heads with the bottoms of their feet, from any direction. Often they find this immensely hilarious.
  5. Spinning around with your child in hand till their eyes twitch in their heads, may be funny to you, but the wife hates it when they throw up on her 30 seconds later.
  6. Projectile vomiting is defined as follows: You child(ren) can and will promptly vomit on you from any location in the house, at any distance, as soon as you change from your ratty yard working clothes into your nice work clothes. This will happen at unexpected times, in unexpected ways. The only time it is a  100% guaranty it will happen is when you have to wear your only suit for some important VIP visit, and you are running late.
  7. Murphy was invented to explain the phenomena of twin children.
  8. A 55-gallon drum is not a sufficiently sized container for disposing of a weeks worth of diapers from twins.
  9. Garbagemen (sorry, sanitation engineers) find a 55-gallon drum full of used diapers disgusting.
  10. No matter how funny you think it was, that was not a fart. It was the teleportation of one child’s bowel movement to the other child’s diaper.
  11. Twins will attract every interested party within a 5-mile radius to annoy you with innane comments and stupid questions the moment you step out the door with them for some exercise. (Are they twins? Are they identical? You must have your hands full.)
  12. Finding time to exercise is nearly impossible when you have twins.
  13. Hell week at SERE training has nothing compared to caring for newborn twins.
  14. As soon as you finally get both children to sleep someone will do one of the following: Show up unexpectedly with something that generates loud noises, call the phone from Timbuktu and feel the need to shout at the top of their lungs to be heard, ring the doorbell repeatedly while pounding on the door with enough force to knock an elephant out, fire off a howitzer, decide that now is the time to put together a marching band and practice, discover that holding down the center of the steering wheel will generate a continuous loud noise, generate some other various loud noise that will invariably wake up both children simultaneously.
  15. The phrase “Your son was misbehaving today” will leave you confused as to which son the spousal unit is talking about.
  16. Square feet of living area defines the space needed by twins for all of their belongings. This number is relative and will always be at least 1,000 square feet more than what you have.
  17. As soon as you save up enough money for that vacation to Tahiti, you will find all those things that you’ve wanted for your children on sale at the local WalMart. You will wind up spending your entire vacation fund on said items. (Walk in for milk, walk out with $4500 in baby stuff, and no milk)

In all of this I have made another rather disturbing discovery. There are many pediatricians out there who not only have no idea on how to deal with twins, but will refuse to service a family with twins. Take our recent pediatrician for example. She was a nice lady, deals well with children, but put her in a room with twins and she was almost completely lost. When asking questions about one twin, she would almost always look at the wrong chart and say “Well I don’t see that information in his chart… Are you sure?” Fortunately our new pediatrician only deals with multiple births so things are getting better there. Anyways, I’m always open for additions, advice, or a means to laugh at my own life; so if you have anything more to add feel free to add them to the comments below!

 

And remember: Those that think they are too small to make a difference, have never spent time in a dark room with a mosquito.

On The Other Hand

Sunday, June 12th, 2011

What if I just posted a video of a bunch of Finnish dudes playing Ace of Spades in a sauna?

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OMW To A-KON!

Saturday, June 11th, 2011

Hooray! Time to get my nerd on.