1. "

    Skyward Sword’s world is like living in a house with no doors and no ceiling.

    To get from one room to the next, you have to climb up the wall at designated points where ladders are bolted on (the orange bird statues/save points). It’s frustrating, it’s limiting, it’s fuckin sloppy. It creates this disconnect between each of the areas and limits the way you experience the rooms/world—which are already pretty simple to begin with.

    It’s not even as convenient as the warping mechanics from OoT or TP! Warping would take you from ANY point to any other point on a set list. Not only did the bird statue save points of SS not take you FROM any given point, but they didn’t even bother taking you TO any point (even one on a set list). The save points were not a convenience for the player; they were a solution to a problem the game invented for itself.

    I see it like this: it’s the difference between getting a shiny new suit of armor that helps you advance unharmed through enemy hordes, and getting a pair of ragged jorts to replace the ones you are wearing because you accidentally shat yourself. And you still can’t advance easily through enemy hordes; you’ll just smell less while suffering through the agony of multiple stab wounds.

    "
    — 

    Are you mildly interested in hearing my mixed but nevertheless overenthused opinion on Skyward Sword’s game design, in the wake of Egoraptor’s new Sequelitis episode?

    (No? That’s alright.)

     
  2. Oh my god I cannot handle the Zelda Wii U hype. Lemme explain why.

    The fact that Aaron Diaz (comic visionary and progressive mind who came up with this) was in talks with Nintendo about his videogame idea starring Zelda as the female protagonist is HUGELY cool. Diaz’s influence is clear in the more technologically advanced slant on LoZ (which I’m a little skeptical but still cautiously optimistic about) that he pitched in his comic, so his ideas about a female protagonist may have stuck as well.

    The “Link” shown in the Zelda Wii U trailer is… still Link, I think (Aaron himself is similarly convinced that the protagonist is still Link, though maybe not male), but he/she/they seem somewhat gender ambiguous. There is still a possibility that the protagonist is a girl that looks like Link, my only doubt stemming from the fact that the protagonist lacks visible breasts—which obviously isn’t a strictly male trait, but Nintendo hasn’t been the most progressive about female body types even in the recent past… seriously, the Zero Suit Samus redesign for the new Smash Bros is even more regressive and impractical than her Brawl design.

    Beyond the character design and the new higher tech aesthetic, I’m super looking forward to a more explorative, open-world style that Aonuma is promising. Change is always good, and few franchises need it more than LoZ. Even if Nintendo doesn’t end up as forward-thinking as I hope, Zelda fans have a lot to look forward to in the wake of this E3.

     
  3. aw jeez aw jeez

    Thanks! I’m glad someone agree with my assessment of the episode. It’s heartening to be among progressive peers—as self-aggrandizing as that sounds. This is why I enjoy Tumblr.

     

  4. Oh jeez I’m not sure how I feel about the newest Adventure Time episode “Breezy”. It’s very well-constructed, as typical of most of Adventure Time, but my god. It delves some heavy shit, which is arguably not handled as well as it could have been. I get the feeling the character development within the episode should have spanned several episodes, to give the changes the proper time to be settled in the right way. Spoilers ahead: do not read until you’ve watched the episode for yourself.

    Read More

     

  5. "Never feel too good in crowds,
    With folks around, when they’re playing
    The anthems of rape culture loud,
    Crude and proud creatures baying."
     

  6. Ugh I don’t think I can watch It’s Always Sunny anymore. It’s a damn shame, because I really do love the show and think it has plenty of innovative and fun comedy. But at this point in my development I really cannot handle the proportion of its humor that relies on rape jokes and other shit like that. I was kind of astounded when I revisited the show today; I didn’t remember how many bigoted and inexcusable jokes there are. I guess that is sort of good news, in that I’ve seen personal growth since the last time I watched the show, but I’m still sad.

    Charlie Day and company have proven that they can do better than that, but they aren’t showing it right now.

     

  7. SO. I just binge watched three movie in a row: Rushmore and Fantastic Mr. Fox (both Wes Anderson films), and Kung Fu Panda 2. 

    Now that I see it with new eyes, Rushmore’s protagonist Max is such an asshole—and I’m glad the last half of the movie is this slow-burning story of redemption. I am also very glad Wes decided to include 2 very admirable (yet still flawed and human) women, Rosemary and Margaret, to contrast the selfish assholitude of Max and Herman. The ending of the movie leaves me feeling ambivalent due to its ambiguous nature, and I still am not entirely sure what to feel about it. But that’s one sign of a good movie: it’s really got me thinking. Rushmore is still up there in my list of favorites, and along with his movie Fantastic Mr Fox, Wes Anderson proves to me that he never disappoints.

    Finally, my sister and I watched Kung Fu Panda 2, which is still one of my favorites. It’s that rare example of the sequel which surpasses its predecessor. It took the comedy and drama of the first film and gave them both more substance, with a fantastic premise to boot. This premise (revealed in the first minute of the film, so it’s not a spoiler) involves the development of gunpowder as a weapon, which outmatches the capabilities of kung fu and threatens the safety of China’s citizens. It’s a fantastic premise which is based in actual history, which gives the story some extra drama and cultural context. Really well handled too. I have to admit I am also a huge sucker for tradition vs. progress storylines, though.

     

  8. It’s literally too fun to learn guitar. My fingers hurt but they hurt good. I already have memorized three chords. No wonder guitarists have a massive ego boner about themselves—they play the best instrument.

     

  9. No, not that Joseph Fink.

    Let me tell you a sad, but informative story.

    image

    Kitty Genovese worked as a bar manager in New York City in the 1960s. She lived with her loving partner Mary Ann Zielonko, but was sadly killed in what became an earth-shattering, globally publicized case.

    On March 13th, 1964, Kitty was stabbed in two separate but consecutive attacks by a sick, sad man by the name of Winston Moseley in the parking lot outside her apartment complex. She died as a result.

    Many neighbors heard her screams and cries for help, though most people didn’t interpret them as such. The New York Times ran an article claiming 37 people witnessed the murder and failed to call the police.

    image

    This has since been debunked, and it is now understood about 12 people saw or heard portions of the crime—though no one witnessed the entirety of the act.

    However, it did spur the development of the new psychological theory of bystander effect (AKA “Genovese syndrome”), which explains that people are driven to inaction in a crisis because—when people are in groups where responsibility is not explicitly assigned—the responsibility for taking action is diffused. That is to say, each person thinks the others will be the ones to call the cops or intervene, or they assume that everything has already been taken care of.

    A courageous Ms. Sophia Farrar came quickly to Kitty’s aid when she was dying in an alley near her apartment complex, even though the attacker could have still been around. She got a rightful commendation for her bravery in the later conviction of Moseley.

    However, only two people actually saw the stabbing. Karl Ross, who saw the second stabbing, quickly called the police. And a previous witness who saw the first stabbing but said nothing:

    image

    Joseph Fink… why does that sound familiar? 

    image

    Oh. 

    image

    Oh, dear God. 

    Guys, don’t be a Joseph Fink. Be a Karl Ross. Or even a Sophia Farrar. We could all use some more Karls and Sophias in this world.

    P.S. Rest in peace, Kitty, knowing that even in death you shined a light on the unknown flaws of society. You have not passed away in vain.

     

  10. get it

    What do you call it when the first chairs of the school concert band play their parts so loudly that it blows the roof off the local Catholic church they were performing in?

    Ex cathedra   (x)

     

  11. Anonymous said: my dad is has a mental disorder and that causes him to get moodswings and he gets mad about everything one second and he is really nice the next second. he also can't recognize if he is doing something wrong. my mother can't convince him to get therapy since he denies that he has a mental illness. what should i do? I have 1 more year of high school left.

    I’m terribly sorry to hear of your situation.

    That is incredibly difficult, and I don’t have personal experience to draw any wisdom from, so I don’t think I can really guide you by myself to any significant capacity. So instead of getting misguided life advice from someone who has not experienced the exact situation you are in, please, seek the help of a family counselor or personal therapist to help guide you through this if you think it can help.

    Also, whatever you do, make sure to keep your best interests at heart. If he ever does really hurt you emotionally or physically, please seek help (whether it be professional therapy, which you could discuss with your mom, or Child Protective Services if things get serious). No one ever deserves mistreatment or abuse, especially at the hands or from the words of a loved one.

    I would hope that gentle persuasion could eventually convince your dad to seek help, but because he is a free agent like any other person, there’s almost nothing you can do to force his hand in this matter. Please try your best to keep yourself emotionally healthy through these tough times, and please consider seeking therapy as an individual or as a family. Maybe if you approach it as a family rather than forcing your dad to do it alone, he will be more open to the idea of getting professional help. He might feel less judged or outcast if your whole family dynamic gets evaluated by a group counselor rather than just his personal mental state. And when getting that help, the therapist could zero in on your dad’s behavior and how it affects the rest of the family.

    Again, this is just an ideal scenario. You should not feel like you have failed if this plan doesn’t come to fruition the way I have described it. As I’ve said and will continue to say, the most important thing is making sure you’re keeping yourself healthy and your head high. Whether this means professional counseling or simply enduring the struggle for one more year, make the right choices for YOU. I wish you the best of luck, and I hope I have helped in some way.

    EDIT: A fellow blogger has notified me that they have experience with this situation, and has generously offered to give you some advice if you’d like it. Please talk to them if you’d like!

     

  12. that one time I came up with a rap on the fly

    1. Aleko: Seriously, there's a stubborn little piece of food stuck between my teeth from that beef noodle soup I had earlier.
    2. Michaela: Flosssssss.
    3. Aleko: I know.
    4. ♪ Gonna be brushin' and flossin' and straight up tossin'
    5. this shit down the drain, gonna rinse, make it rain.
    6. Let it flow from my mouth like this rap goin' south
    7. South in terms of quality.
    8. On that lyrical note I'm gonna shut down my throat and sail this boat down the Nile,
    9. 'Cuz my raps is Ra and y'all haters gonna drown, 'cuz y'all are doggy-paddlin' in denial.
    10. Michaela: LOL I need to go get cracking on this chem book.
    11. Aleko: Girl, you study that chem and be a sharp femme,
    12. Realize your potential, it's but eventual
    13. that you'll be a straight up Renaissance gal.
    14. Kickin' ass, taking names, sail your yacht down the Thames, be the Mona Lisa's only best pal.
    15. You're the reason she hides that beautiful smile 'cuz you both are privy to the flyest of styles.
    16. Go fly near the sun 'cuz don't you know son, that the only thing that'll melt is that big ol' star heart
    17. 'Cuz Icarus and Daedalus struggle to even pedal a bike, but you fly up Olympus like it ain't no big hike.
    18. Flap your wings and soar to the sky 'cuz you so fly it even surprises the all-seeing Oracle at Delphi.
     

  13.  

  14. Even with my second rewatch, Moonrise Kingdom is ridiculously good. I usually detest child actors but Wes Anderson just KNOWS how to direct them. Their deadpan expressions and occasionally mumbled lines really lend themselves to fantastic realism without sacrificing clarity or emotion (thus avoiding a problem that too often occurs with child actors in other films). You can tell the prepubescent characters are finding their place in the world, not only through their actual stumbling through life, but also through their small struggles with vocal and emotional expression.

    And of course, typical of his style, the film slowly evolves into campy surrealism as the stakes of the story get higher and higher which I just adore. But he never loses track of the emotional core of the story or the themes he reinforces throughout: the precocious nature of children, the sad truth behind the world-weary adults who guide and control them despite having lost track of their own moral direction, and the beauty of love and personal redemption.

    Plus, in this film, Anderson tackles his frequent problem of not having many developed female characters, with the complex and emotionally-relatable character of Suzy. She is pleasant enough to identify with but emotionally compromised in a manner one would expect from her troubling upbringing and nonexistent relationship with her parents. I truly appreciated the fact that Anderson did not sugar-coat the reality of the struggles Suzy is going through, and allows the character to express herself in the harsh and sometimes violent ways that teens do when in stuck in such a horrid and unforgiving world.

    All in all, this film manages to adopt an engaging and emotionally positive tone by putting a spotlight on the magical idealism of youth while also addressing the struggles of becoming mature. I just love it.

    Tagged #personal
     

  15. Anonymous said: how do you deal with college rejection?

    I’m gonna try and give my most sincere advice here, so let me first explain my experience with the process.

    In my senior year of high school, I was in kind of behind everyone developmentally. I wasn’t able to think for the future, and I didn’t consider college very seriously, because it seemed like such an abstract, uncertain idea and it seemed silly to pretend I had control over the innumerable variables shaping my future more than I could myself. 

    So, in my senior year, I did not have a dream college. I didn’t even care very much about which college I went to beyond their most superficial differences. Haha, if I ever told my parents about the incredible indifference I had towards the whole process, they would be horrified. When applying for college, I just went for the schools that inspired some marginal interest in me, or the ones my parents and friends recommended. And when my choices were narrowed down to Cal Poly or UC Davis, I went with Davis because I though the arboretum and pond were very pretty and I liked the ducks. I’m not even exaggerating.

    And guess what? It turned out fine. Even if Davis wasn’t my “dream school” and I was rejected from the majority of the schools I applied to that I was interested in, I found my place in the school I ended up going to. It’s all about making the most of where you end up. I believe that unless the college has some unparalleled, truly unique characteristic (which many of them don’t, even if they claim to), it is comparable in quality to other schools. True, it’s a good idea to strive for a school which is known for a program in the field you want to pursue, but many schools will be known for similar programs and there is no strict hierarchy governing which of these programs is “better” than the rest.

    Remember, the college application process is at its heart a financial transaction, or a hiring process of sorts. The colleges sell themselves as better than the rest because they want your tuition and they want the unilateral (and sometimes cruel) power to pick and choose among a population of applicants larger than the number of openings. And, in my opinion, the whole idea of a “dream school” is generally a myth perpetuated by this competitive system in which schools exaggerate their superiority to other institutions, which are in fact comparable and will yield you a degree of similar weight and validity in the job market.

    And also, the colleges don’t KNOW you. They could never know you from their very limited interaction with you. The college application process is a mechanical and exhausting process of repetition in which students are incentivized to reuse essays and personal statements and colleges use numbers and statistics rather than getting to know you as a person. So getting “rejected” by them is no indication of your personal worth or value, and so you shouldn’t feel bad for that reason.

    Furthermore, rejection can occur to any number of possible reasons, many of which have nothing really to do with you as a person. The whole college application process is a complex, flawed system mired in the inhuman interactions—such as the cruelly cold and formal rejection letters churned out mechanically to put down the efforts of earnest applicants—typical of any system that has to deal with so many people’s information. I know people who have cried their hearts out because their name was automatically inserted from a database of applicant names into the “insert name here” blanks on some document template on a clerk’s computer, then printed in bulk on a whirring mechanical printer to be sent out en masse by a regulated system to crush people’s dreams. It sound melodramatic when I word it as such, but that’s just the absurdity of the system. To treat the dreams of fellow human beings with such a callous formality is absurd. So don’t be sad as much as indignant about it. No machine or system could fully encapsulate your worth and your value as a person, student, and future worker. Rejection is just an inevitable side effect of a flawed system incapable of treating all people equally due to scarcity of educational resources.

    That got kind of abstract. I apologize if I lost you. But to sum it all up, here’s a TL;DR summary of everything you should keep in mind when dealing with college rejections:

    • It’s okay to go to a school which was not your dream school. You MAKE your school your dream school; that is to say, going to college is a process of acclimation. Generally speaking, you will adapt to the college you go to and thus you will make the most of the resources they provide regardless of whether the school was your initial dream school. You will find the best in yourself regardless of whether the school itself is the “best”.
    • Schools aren’t as different as they would have you believe. The college market is competitive, so they like to exaggerate to make their schools seem the best when they really are quite similar to one another. It’s more important to get a degree and get job/internship experience than it is to get a specific degree from a specific school.
    • The college application process is a flawed system which does not give either schools or students full, holistic, or candid information about each other. Thus, rejections should never be taken as a representation of your personal worth or quality as a student/worker.

    I hope that helps. I’m rooting for you, and I hope you get through this stressful process a-okay.