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I Don’t Know What This Is, Part 7

It was a decent dystopia—it really wasn’t one…I was just the only person to know the context and the coming flood. I met a friend, I think from high school, in the multilevel city. He was pushing a small food cart. He opened the lid and tried to pass off the floating heads as meatballs, which I guess they were to most folks. Again, I was the only one to notice things around here.

Later on, the meat-heads became entire meat-people, and started chasing me all around the crowded city, like Arnold in any of his movies. We had a shootout in a convenience store. Bullets and potato chips everywhere, women scuttling away from the line of fire. One of the meat-people died, probably. When meat is already dead it’s hard to tell.

I arrived at some other building, ground level. The skyline was visible, and we could tell the waters were rushing in because the sky on the horizon made it obvious: black and roiling. Why the sky has to change is beyond me—whoever designed this apocalypse didn’t put a lot of effort into it. I blame Arnold movies.

We all died. I don’t remember where the last save point was.

I Don’t Know What This Is, Part 6

There was an Hispanic lady at the Chinese takeout place. I don’t know how I knew that. I tried my rudimentary Spanish on her, and she responded back with salsa-flavored friendliness. She knew I made an effort. I almost jumped the counter to tell the cooks my order because I thought that was customary. Someone held me back. There were two hands on my arm and it felt like a grip from different people. Maybe they can self-multiply on necessity.

The next day or month we were in a waffle house. The hostess was friends with us somehow but she didn’t give us any special treatment. She didn’t give any customers treatment. No one had food but we were all okay with it. When we left, still hungry, we found out she leaked gold or diamonds out of her various bodily holes—all of them. We didn’t think it worth the trouble turning around to become independently wealthy. She was black and she didn’t like white people. That’s not saying much because she hated everyone in the restaurant the same.

Two Battle Songs

Ran across these two songs, and I found them enjoyable. They are both from the game NieR, which I am told is one of the better action RPGs from the previous gen of consoles (Playstation 3, Xbox 360). The game features a levitating, talking book that follows the PC around. That’s already a good premise.

Contrast the voices in the two videos: In “Song of the Ancients,” the women sing almost as mezzo-sopranos, while in “Emil Karma,” the boy is pretty much soprano. Emil in the game is voiced by Julie Ann Taylor, but I don’t know if she sings the song or if it’s an actual boy. To my knowledge, these songs play during battle scenes in the game.

At first I thought it odd to have a battle song sung by females, but then I remembered in an Old Testament class I took in college, that women would trail behind the Hebrew armies as they marched, to clap and sing encouraging songs*. They also did that after returning home from battle. There were probably similar phenomena in other pre-modern cultures.

Having some girls cheer you is a favored thing to guys, anyway, but maybe it was a bigger deal to them since there’s no telling what would happen on the battlefield. The nation of Israel could live on even after one of the sperm donors men got run through with a rusty Canaanite spear, but once the women are gone, that’s pretty much it. Imagine that—being praised for something you were supposed to do anyways, even when you failed at it (cue that Aaron Copland symphony). I can only speak for guys, but unless you’re a millionaire genius Navy Seal or there’s social media points involved, praise for performing a cultural mandate is hard to come by**.

* I remember this very specifically because the teacher mentioned a “sedan” was involved, and I (first) thought it was weird that they had Honda Civics back then.
** Sorry, MGTOW losers: men were always expected to perform proactively, way before feminism was an itch in Mary Wollstonecraft’s crumpety crotch.
*** Bonus unreferenced footnote: this post is not me complaining about “society” cheating me out of anything. No one owes me a damn thing.

“This sentence has meaning.”

Rock and pop aren’t as self-referential to the extent hip-hop, blues, or country are—though rock and pop are a few tiny notches more than classical I attribute rock’s statistics to AC/DC’s songs about…rockin’, in the non-euphemistic sense.

Rock takes itself too seriously. You have to take classical seriously because it took a long time and lots of money to enter into it, and to even listen to it…this is all pre-Industrial Rev and modern recording. I guess some of that carries over to this day.

So imagine how odd it is for a pop rock band vocalist to sing about what the song is doing as he’s singing it. The meta- semiotics being smuggled in there is a goldmine. A goldmine of something.

Ivoryline – And The Truth Will End This lyrics.

Bonus: clean-cut rock bands (it’s a siding scale, generationally) should also use semi-gory figurative phrasing to up the cognitive dissonance. “I won’t stop ’til I turn your insides out”? Graphic!

“Let’s Just Reset”

“Two minutes to drop. It’s alright to be scared. Remember, there is no courage without fear.”
-Master Sergeant Farell, Edge of Tomorrow

Enjoy Another “I Changed the WordPress Theme” Post

I’ve grown close to Bootstrap-based layouts since tinkering with them a lot earlier this year at the company hackathon. Even very basic Bootstrap layouts were appealing, hence my use of the new theme, Bootstrap Canvas WP. There are no direct CSS customizations—just modifications made in WordPress’ factory theme customizer.

I’ve only two issues: the menu collapse and the footer links. The standard menu collapses below 768 pixel viewport width, into the hamburger. I dislike hamburger menu UX in general and the theme doesn’t make it easy to avoid that, but with blogs like this I dislike the hamburger experience the least, so I let it slide. The theme credits in the footer inexplicably link to jaydinitto.com…twice. Eventually I’ll be on a bug hunt for some phantom Javascript playing oogie-boogie somewhere, causing that.

Merry Christmas, 2016

A cover of a favorite Christmas song of mine. Its atonality is refreshing. Enjoy!

I’m Playing Undertale

It’s an odd game, but it makes a lot of sense if you adjust to it.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – Initial Thoughts

Minor spoilers below…

1 – It was good, with some great moments and mildly cringy moments—par for the course for the franchise.

2 – As expected, the production values were top shelf. Some faces, to match the age of the actors seen almost 40 years ago in Episode IV: An New Hope, had to be CGI, and they were pretty much flawless renderings. Grand Moff Tarkin and Princess Leia were the most obvious, and I believe Garven Dreis (“Red Leader, standing by…”) was spotted.

3 – Forest Whitaker and Wen Jiang as Saw Gerrera and Baze Malbus, respectively, were excellent, and Alan Tudyk’s voice work for the resigned, deadpan K-2S0 was top notch. On the antagonist side, Ben Mendelsohn as Director Orson Krennic, the Chief Very Bad White Villain, kept pace with the obvious fan-favorite focus on Darth Vader. Not an easy task. Felicity Jones’ Jyn Erso, the Stock Female Badass Protagonist With Eyeliner, gave an average performance, but in some scenes she had her moments.

4 – As it relates to the Star Wars universe in general, the film was intentionally darkwashed and feminized—two of the film’s writers said so, going so far as retconning the Empire into a white supremacist organization. Fighting against racial imperialism is actually a good thing, but note that nearly no white supremacists/imperialists exist—being pro-white (or pro-any-race) is nowhere near the same thing as being pro-white-racial-imperialism. If you can’t parse that difference, or feel the need to special plead for certain demographics, you’ve been successfully propagandized.

5 – Cassian Andor’s styling yet functional parka.

I Don’t Know What This Is, Part 5

Here’s a spoiler alert: zombies are tied to their lands, like feudal serfs in Medieval Europe. If their “lifeland” is doing well, they are going to be coming at you like strongmen. They draw energy from prosperous earth. A solution: drop every dead body far away from where they died so they will end up totally confused. They can’t assimilate well, but they don’t get assaulty or rapey like Syrian refugees—they’ll just stalk and eventually eat you with no pretense of shame or inhibition. I don’t know which is worse. If we’ve deported them enough distance (the zombies, I mean), they’ll have a hard time of all of it. Maybe drop them onto Antarctica? Google Maps fetishists will clamor for more coverage in the area to see the folly for themselves.

Not a spoiler: you wind along cramped, old-city streets, not necessarily running from zombies, but possibly. You end up at a narrow courtyard where lots of hip, young, attractive types are lounging in the spring sun. There’s a low-lying terracotta roof bordering at the back of the courtyard. You make your way onto it with your lover but you can’t seem to get physical with her. You both can’t stand the sight of having your carnal indulgences on display for the starved undead. Maybe it’s like a mirror for you. Or them. You’re pretty much content with just sitting there.