Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Pumped up Kicks isn't the culprit

     Before I get into this rant, I feel like I need to explain, that I do so with a heavy heart. The subject of school shootings is one that hits home with me. I went to Westside High School during the Westside Shooting, so I don't take these things lightly. I am also the father of an 8 yr old, so my heart goes out to the victims and the families of Sandy Hook Elementary.

     With that being said, I think we have a real problem when things like this happen. It seems when something happens that doesn't make sense to us, we attempt to grasp at straws, and blame these tragedies on anything that we can. There is a song called "Pumped Up Kicks" that I am sure you have heard recently. This song has been out for over a year. It has managed to fly under the radar as do many other great Indie songs. However with the recent tragic event that took place, their song has been pulled from the air. Now, I understand the lyrics are controversial. However, how exactly did a shooting suddenly cause people to be offended by it? The lyrics haven't changed since it was first released.  A song doesn't reach #3 on the billboards because most people find the lyrics offensive.
     Now, I hate to be the one to blow this horn, but songs are a form of expression. Therefore, it falls clearly under the free speech realm. Now, I know most people will say that simply pulling the song off the air doesn't mean people can't listen to it on youtube. Therefore, it hasn't truly been censored. This is BS. You know it and I know it. Kiss FM is one of the largest nationally syndicated radio stations in the U.S., and one of the most popular. By doing this, they have essentially snubbed this band.
     It's not like the band isn't being supportive. They are calling for stronger gun laws (which I won't even go into), and for donations for the school, and the victims families. Regardless of what political agendas they might have, their hearts are in the right place.

     It's not just Foster the People that are having to endure this type of censorship. Ke$ha is also dealing with it. Her song "Die Young" has also been pulled from the air. It won't stop with just music either. Games, Movies, and just about any other type of media or expression that may or may not imply any time of violence. This isnt the first time this has happened either. If American citizens are going to have these kind of "values" when a tragedy strikes, then they need to be consistent with them. Not just when its politically correct, but all the time. It's one of the biggest problems with our society today. Political Correctedness is taken too seriously. We are too afraid to hurt someones feelings in public. However, we go home and put on our headphones and we still listen to the songs. We still play the games. There is a word for this. It's hypocrite.

     I understand that the shooting was terrible. This is not to undermine or trivialize it in any way. I am just so sick of people suddenly gaining a conscience and looking down their noses at things that were just fine until something bad happened.

Foster The People, Ke$ha, Guns, Video Games.....
These things did NOT cause the tragedy. A person's actions caused it. Somebody made a conscious decision to pick up the gun. We need to understand that these types of things are going to happen. We may not ever understand them. We just need to know that ITS OK if we don't understand them. It's the times that we live in. Some people are sick, and rational thinkers simply aren't going to understand the series of events that led up to them committing these horrible acts. Mourn the lost, raise awareness, and comfort the victims families as best as we can. Don't point the bony finger of blame at things that are easy targets.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Achievement Unlocked: Life

     Anyone who has played games (especially on Xbox) know about achievements. They are given to you by completing certain goals and objectives in a game. Some are as easy as finishing the first level, or killing your first enemy. Some seem downright impossible, like completing the entire game without firing a single shot, or without dying. Some people (called achievement hunters) do everything they can to complete every achievement for every game. Depending on the difficulty you are typically awarded achievement points that serve no purpose whatsoever except for bragging rights. While achievements made a name for themselves on Xbox, almost all games have them now. All the way down to mobile games.

       Now, lets work that imagination for a moment. Imagine for a moment if you will, that life had achievements. From the moment you take your first breath to the moment you take your last, you are awarded achievements for life goals. Maybe when you are younger the achievements are simple. "Achievement Unlocked: Shit pants - 10 pts" How awesome would it be to be able to go back and look at the list of achievements you have done so far. It would be even funnier for those people who want to "live life to the fullest" and complete any achievements they may have missed. That could have some serious comedic value. Say there was an achievement for riding a pony or playing on the Burger King indoor playground. I could just imagine seeing an adult putting themselves in ridiculous situation for the sake of completion. 
     This would also be helpful for catching liars and cheaters. That girl from when you were in school that swore she was a virgin, when in reality she had sex with half the football team. You could actually track that shit. Yea, it says here that you unlocked the achievement "losin' it" in '94. It would be even worse if you decided to have sex with someone. Hey lets "ding" together. I'm ready to ding. Then you finish up and an achievement pops up above your head "Achievement Unlocked - Losin' It - 25pts" How awkward would it be when your girlfriend didn't get the achievement, because of the "7 minutes in heaven" game that went a bit to far at that college party. 
     Obviously the Achievement tracker would need some type of privacy controls. After all, you wouldn't want your parents to see all your achievements. No Dad, I didn't egg the principals house. I was with friends that did it, and I got the achievement for being a member of the party at the time. 

     Then there is the obvious issue of deciding what items are tracked. For instance, not many people would want to look back and see that they unlocked the achievement for having sex with 100 different sex partners,  or for drinking an entire bottle liquor in one sitting. Although these things would be good to know about someone if you were getting to know them.

   So what was the last achievement you unlocked? What achievements do you still need? 

Friday, December 14, 2012

One last post before the Apocalypse.

     Where to start, I decided to check on the stats of my blog when I suddenly realized that I haven't done an entry in almost 2 months. The sad truth is that not a lot has been going on as of late. A lot of school and work. That's about it. I had decided last month to really get out and attempt to start dating again. After having successfully tapered down to just .5 mg per day of klonopin, I was feeling much better and continue to do so. I am still on Celexa though, and I don't really see myself dropping it any time soon.
     I did meet a great woman last month. She lives a couple of hours away, but I get to see her regularly enough. She really has shown me how patient and sweet some women can be. I wasn't the easiest person to date. I had a lot of reservations at first, because I honestly wasn't sure I was ready. I went for it, and frankly, I felt like I was being shady, but she pushed through it, and I am very happy about it.
     I had a successful semester in school, and I am looking forward to going back next semester. I'm quite ready to get finished up with school, and move on from it. Although, I'm still not sure what I am going to do with my degree. I have a pretty sweet set up where I am working, and I'm not entirely sure I would like to leave it.
     The kids are continuing to grow like weeds. Xander played full contact football this summer, and did great. Even though he has a small stature, we wasn't afraid to jump right in (at least most of the time). Gracie is coming along well too. I cant believe how big she is getting!

     So, here we are. Exactly one week until the end of the world as we know it. Tensions are high (as are most people that take this seriously), and we are just sitting and waiting. I hope everyone else had the foresight that I have to go out and blow your entire life savings on non-perishables, and firearms and Ammo. I figured, hell....I won't need the money. After all, the money will be no good after the Zombie uprising, which I am still concerned will start in Florida. Not because of the odd goings on that have happened in recent history there. I believe it will happen there because of the old people. Old people will get sick, then the fat people (because they are slow enough for the old people to get), then children, followed by mother's and lastly...Fathers. If you don't have any children you are safe at least until the Zombie child is tired of eating Mommy and Daddy and decide to go after their aunts and uncles. The safest people during the apocalypse are only children that have no kids. I have put a lot of thought in this. so trust me. I will have the kids after work on the 21st, so if its going to happen, I feel like I will be safer. They will eat their Moms first, unless the apocalypse happens late at night, in which case, I fall into the 2nd and 3rd categories. I'm fat, and I will be the only parent around. I feel like I have spent far too much time explaining my rational thoughts to you, so I digress.
     All I know is that after buying all the guns and ammo, I can't afford Christmas. So, if this turns out not be true, I am going to have to give cases of ammunition and possibly firearms to my children for Christmas. Although, I'm sure if this doesn't pan out, there will be another end time theory right around the corner.

    Here is to hoping that all your Apocalypse wishes and Zombie dreams come true!

Talk to you on the other side of 12/21/12.