Monday, November 18, 2013

so my life sucks

so a brief overview of whats been going on in my life.

the financial aid problems I've been having at school this semester have balloned into "we won't let you register till you can magic up several thousand dollars that we should be giving you but were not"
I have a strange red boil on my stomach that has a purple spot and was getting bigger till a few days ago.
every class I'm taking had a major test in the time span of about a week.
and to cap things off on the free way some asshole smashed into my car and then ran off, so I have to somehow  come up with a new car or drive around with most of the rear half of my car severly damaged or missing.

so that's been my month how about yours? 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

a favor.

OK so one of my friends is going through a rough time, you can find her short post about it here .  I haven't heard from her since we had a very brief conversation the same night she made that post.  now it's not uncommon for us to go long periods of time without talking to each other, so don't be too alarmed.  that being said I would really appreciate it if everyone would pop over to her blog and try to leave a few words of encouragment for her.

thank you.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

just a quick update on the last month

I was hoping to have a bit more but for some reason I've been coming down with a bad stomach ache for the last few weekends doesn't bug me for the rest of the week, but hits me on the weekend and can make it hard to sleep.

anyway school started up last week, and a couple weeks before that I got a part time job working at the school, so I'll have a bit more money coming in. and since it's a school position they're great about working around my schedule so it's a pretty good deal for me, assuming my depression doesn't cause the additional workload to overwhelm me.  anyway things seem to be going well for the most part and I hope to have more on this blog soon.

Monday, July 22, 2013

a few updates and a long video

hey everyone, just a few quick updates since it's been a while. I finished my summer class about a week ago and now I'm gearing up for the fall semester. I also want to draw everyone attention to this wonderful video.

it's about two hours long but it's a wonderful trans 101 sort of thing mostly aimed at cis people (people who aren't trans) but either way I recomend finding time to watch it.

and final note adobe has recently made their creative suit free (I think it's a couple years out of date but a couple years isn't a big deal for this kind of software) you can get it here I'm going to try playing around with the software a bit I'm not particularly talented in that whole art thing but like most programmers I want to make games so if I can use this stuff to make basic but recognizable images it would be a great help.  but I figured I'm likely to start by making caps because, well that's probably one of the most basic things you can do with an image processing program so it's a great way to jump in and not get immediately overwhelmed. so if that's your thing you can look forward to seeing a few of my meager attempts in the near future.

Saturday, June 8, 2013


I may be a little late to the party, but when this show came to my attention last week I knew I had to check it out. the basic premise is that a 12 year old kid finds a ring that belongs to his aunt who recently passed away. said ring gives him superpowers, complete with costume and batman style vehicle and cave.  the catch is that the super hero is Shezow in all previous instances a girl superhero with very feminine outfit and gadgets.
that light saber he's holding, it comes from a tube of lipstick, and it's official name is laser lipstick.

some outlets have been stating that this cartoon contains the first transsexual superhero, unfortunately that's not the case.  the ring doesn't change guy(the main characters name) into a girl just gives him the dress. and there's no indication of gender identity issues, he's perfectly happy with being a guy.  for him the dress is simply a small price to pay for the cool superpowers it comes with.

that being said I do think there is a lot of value in the show for gender questioning youth.  the fact that guy has to dress very girly is laughed at only a few short times in the first episode, even for the majority of that episode becoming Shezow is seen as a very cool thing, guy even manages to taunt his sister with the fact that he's Shezow.

I can not put into words how much a show like this could have helped me when I was growing up.  seeing a guy doing girly stuff and not being shamed or laughed at for it but it actually being a source of confidence and strength. daughterOfMulan one of the contributors on the gamerisms tumblr I'm a member of (actually she's the main contributor) has already done an excellent write up on how it presents femininity has empowering (read it here).  but the almost gender bending aspect really does provide some particular benefit to trans kids.

so in short I feel there's a lot of positive aspects to this show, and has far as kids show's go it's pretty good even independent of it's progressive elements. so here's to hoping it catches on, and here's to hoping someday soon kids will have a real transsexual superhero they can look up to.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

pins, buttons and charm braclets

ok I'm going to try something odd, and try to talk about fashion and clothing.  OK it shouldn't be that bad, I'm not talking about how to match up blouses and skirts or anything.  in fact buttons and charm bracelets are things I like more in concept then as an actual clothing choice.  see with charm bracelets you start off with a very basic and plain looking bracelet, but it's made so you can hook smaller decorative pieces onto it. and these pieces could be anything. it could be something you just liked the look of, it could be a reminder of a place you like to visit, or maybe some movie book or game you love.  and buttons allow you to do the same thing but with packs hats, or any clothing.

this makes it possible to create a truly unique expression of yourself and your interests which, in concept is something that I absolutely love.  unfortunately it also typically looks cluttered and thus I'm unlikely to indulge in it no matter how much I like it as a concept. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

my thoughts on halo

I've come to realize I pretty much said all I really wanted to on assassins creed, there's a bit more I could add but not a lot and if I tried to write the whole thing out like I had planned on I would just be forcing myself to just to fight the idea of a "review" and if I'm having that much trouble writing it, then it's not going to be that interesting to read. so once again the format is changing to just my general thoughts on a game/franchise. so today I bring you my thoughts on Halo.

I'll do my best to avoid spoilers, and I've only played the first three games (which in my opinion don't have much you even could spoil as story isn't the priority of this series)  however in order to illustrate my point a few small bits from the first three games (as well as lore I've simply heard) will likely make it through.

in the past I've been really tough on Halo, I usually justify it by saying that it doesn't have a story, or characters, but I tend to be harder on halo then I do those other games, and after listening to miracle of sounds "reclaimer" a few times I started to think about why.  and in the end I think it comes down to one thing. the shallow games I give a pass to have story and characters that do just what their meant to, provide the most basic context for what your doing and why. Halo does just a little more, not a lot more, but just enough to gain a glimpse of the potential it had.

so lets start with the hero himself, the Master chief. as he is in the games he's pretty much a textbook empowerment fantasy, non-offensive in his portrayal but shockingly one dimensional.  however there are a few things that stick out, for one he's incredibly wreckless, carrying a bomb into space and possibly the most wreckless move of all jumping from a spaceship to a planet, something which resulted in him being unable to move till a group of marines were fortunate enough to find him and had to be retconned in the novels and comics to add him using a piece of metal to act as a shield for re-entry.  yeah it's probably best not to read too much into that aspect but it still makes an interesting contrast to how many of the soldiers see him as a symbol of hope in a loosing war (and that bit has more or less been there since the early moments of the first game). and though I'm not sure if this is ever stated in the games after Halo 3 but supposedly he was kidnapped as a child to be raised in the spartan program that gave him his special training and forced him to accept his cybernetic enhancements. 

backing away from the chief himself, and taking a look at the humans in the game. they have a branch of their military that is formed from kidnapped children, this doesn't seem to be the type of world that worships the military enough to let it get away with that (though they are very militaristic), to me that would indicate it's either a very secret or the war is getting that desperate, and people are willing to look the other way and chalk it up as a "necessary evil".  and from what's seen in the game I think I think it's more the later then the former.  there's other evidence to support the idea that the war is a desperate, the second game opens up with what appears to be an invasion of earth, it starts in orbit before finally being brought down to the surface, and despite what the chief himself is able to do the overall impression is that the covenant are pushing through.  then it's revealed that the covenant weren't expecting any humans to be there.  then to cap it all off the military gives permission to one of it's ships to 'jump" despite the fact that it's hovering over a city and it's heavily implied that this jump will result in the destruction of the city.  there's a lot more including ones that show that the soldiers have started seeing the chief as some sort of symbol of hope.

last but not least is the lore of the Halo universe.  the human-covenant war isn't the only conflict in the series there are two more factions, the flood, and forerunner tech.  the flood is presented as part disease part zombie as they are nearly impossible to destroy, as they can grow from tiny spores and then they take over the bodies of other species (living or dead) in order to spread and attack, and long ago a race called the forerunners fought the flood and grew so desperate that they decided the only way to eliminate them was to build a series of rings to eliminate all life in the galaxy and then re-seed the galaxy.  the forerunner rings are still active and they have several machines that attempt to run the extinction process again once it's discovered the flood are active again.  and these machines mistake humans has for the forerunners, even giving the chief the title of reclaimer while prompting him to activate the rings. the covenant also worship the forerunner tech and believe it will lead them to salvation.

admittedly none of that stuff on it's own is particularly compelling and I did do some reaching for the chief himself.  but what you should keep in mind is that all of this is presented within the series and even though the interesting bits are given so little time their done in a way that shows someone thought about how all this stuff would co-exist and interweave, but not enough time is spent on them for the audience to get how these things work, they are briefly shown the shoved aside for more shooting aliens.  and that is what I feel is the true problem of Halo, not that it doesn't have a story but that some one began crafting a great story for it but it was shoved to the side for more shooting.

ultimately Halo had great potential to be a great sci-fi game, Instead it became an action game, were the setting was barely used and seemed only their to provide the most basic context for you actions.  It is that failure to live up to it's potential that caused me to be so hard on Halo, and why I remain so tough on it today.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

winning the lottery and plastic surgery

ok before I go on, a little update about the game review, I've been kinda busy but spring break is coming up soon, so I'll finish the writing then. and in the future I'll write the whole thing out before I post it so I can gurantee they'll go up regularly, now onto the main topic.

so on my way to and from school I pass one of those billboards that advertises the lottery and updates to show the current jackpot.  like most people when the jackpot starts climbing I find myself occasionally fantasizing about what I could do with that kind of money. usually it's fairly normal stuff, pay off my debts, move to a larger city, finish school, buy a house etc etc.  a twist came a bit later when I was watching some vlogs made by a trans woman one of the things she discussed was her new breast implants and she mentioned that she planned to get bigger ones later.

this prompted a few thoughts about myself and eventually I came to a depression realization.  if I had the financial means I would likely become addicted to plastic surgery.  between liposuction, breast implants, countless facial surgeries to "feminize" my face and hide my Adams apple (something on me that's already small enough I probably don't have to worry about it).  it's not that I have anything against cosmetic surgery or anything, but the idea of me going in for the latest of a never ending string of cosmetic surgeries is not an image that I like.  and the scariest part is I don't even need lottery money to get to that point,  if I get a stable job as a programmer at a big company I could end up in a similar chain of surgeries, just with more time in between them.  

now to be fair, it is possible that with HRT and maybe a couple of surgeries (like SRS) that my body issues will calm down at least enough to avoid this situation (though I really don't see them disappearing altogether).  but I really don't know and when I think about it, the only thing preventing it right now is a lack of the money. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

proto review: assasins creed the series

OK so way late but here's my attempt at talking about games, I settled on assassins creed three since it was a game I finished fairly recently and has actually given me a lot I feel I could talk about.  now when I started writing this down it started becoming pretty big and I know from my analytics that people tend to shy away from my longer posts, but since one of my goals of this series is to try and get into deep discussions about games I didn't really want to cut it down too much so I'm taking a page out of Shamus's book and breaking it up into different pieces, in the future I might look into turning this into some sort of video to make it more assessable (and to save you from my poor writing).  this first part will be my thoughts and experience with the series as a whole and I'll start giving my thoughts on assassins creed 3 specifically next time.  (don't worry no spoilers yet)

the Series

I played the first assassins creed game and it sucked me in instantly,  it had gorgeous visuals, the Pakour elements were still fairly new in gaming and it was the first time I remember it being used in an open world environment. many of the assassinations had a number of ways you could approach your target and make the kill,  and even when there was only one path it didn't feel like the game was railroading you, it simply felt like the target himself was difficult to get close to so it was very organic.  But the absolute best part was the conflict between the templars and the assassins,  it wasn't a traditional good guy and bad guy dynamic.  the two sides were at war, and between the two I would throw my hat in with the assassins, but the templars had a solid case and were fighting for peace, many of the assassination targets (though not all) seemed like good people that I regretted having to kill.

the game wasn't perfect and it's biggest flaw was it's incredibly repetitive nature, before each assassination you had to gather info on your target and there were only a handful of mission types, many of them were immersive, but ultimately not exciting, and you would have to repeat these missions a dozen or so times.  for the sequel ubisoft decided to fix that problem and assassins creed two was stuffed with extra's and different activities and each successive sequel seems to add more. this Ironically has become one of the series biggest flaws as many of the elements they added had little to do with the core engagement and game play of the franchise.  Meanwhile assassinations were becoming more linear to emphasis more "cinematic" moments.  But worst of all in assassins creed 2 templars devolved into bad guys about as complex as those you'd find in a Saturday morning cartoon show, this however seemed to be something Ubisoft noticed as in subsequent games the Templars have been slowly re-gaining some aspects of the previously complex nature.

Friday, January 18, 2013


so this Monday is going to be my 26th birthday, and this also happens to be my 100th post on this blog.  as such I'm feeling a bit reflective but I'm also a bit low on energy so here's the cliff notes of what's been going on in my life, and in my head.

since my last post I've actually been doing really good for the most part.  I had a lot of energy and was feeling pretty good, I didn't make any progress on anything for my blog but I did a lot of work on code academy(a website that teaches programming languages), even started a book called the game makers apprentice that teaches you how to use game maker (software that lets you make games, designed to be easy for individuals or small groups), and I was doing a lot of reading.  I know that last one sounds weird but I can roughly gauge my mood by my leisure activities, as much as I love reading, it seems difficult for me to get the energy to do it, and when I get really bad I start to just watch movies or TV shows and little else to relax,  though normally I spend my time in a state were my preferred activity is video games. And then for some reason my energy just rapidly dropped, I'm not entirely sure why but I have been experimenting with an over the counter depression med (st. johnsons wort) I was originally on pretty high dosage (2 pills three times a day)  and I tried to cut down to twice a day.  while it could be a coincidence(since my depression has it's ups and downs) I think I'll be sticking with the really high dosage from now on.

on another note i've been reflecting on my blog.  I started it a little over three years ago, and it's a bit surprising what has changed,  I've learned a great deal about how my depression works. I've managed to get back into school for programming. and even though it's been a slow process I do feel I've made significant progress in clearing up a lot of my emotional baggage. heck I managed to go from thinking I needed repay my x for all the pain I caused her to realizing that, no I don't have to and it was really fucked up of her to shame me every night for not being ready for sex.  has a result I've finally managed to distance myself from her though I still contemplate deleting my account at the haven and changing my YIM ID just so there's no way left for her harass me again.

also I've watched this trailer about a million times in the last week.  the game is a long way away from release but I'm looking forward to it.(if your not famliar with cyberpunk 2020 and you want to watch the video open it on youtube and read the description first.  the trailer needs a lot of insider info to understand but the description does a pretty good job telling you what you need to know).