Friday, October 15, 2010

And they're off!

Like the rest of their cohort, x34 officially flies the coop today. See? Old enough to wear bow-ties, they are. Witch hats are for the crone and codger that sent them on their way.

And some of the graduating class of x33

x34 again. Long may these kids look back fondly and remember that on this date they took their first steps into a society larger than they ever imagined. Though they have an exam yet to get through first.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Putting the "me" in media

Messing around with Google's Chrome Experiments. Found The Wilderness Downtown fun in a narcissistic, nostalgic kind of way. It mainly features Arcade Fire's music video, "We Used to Wait". But thanks to Google Maps, if you input an address into the search bar, that location becomes incorporated into the video. The integration isn't smooth just yet 'cos lots of windows pop up, occasionally obscuring each other, but I can imagine what it could be like when the integration becomes more seamless.

For the most all-about-me effect, the Experiment encourages you to input the street address of the house you grew up in, though you may input any address you wish. One of the windows that pop up asks you to write a postcard to the past "you" from the perspective of the person you are now. Ok, then, a little reflective self-indulgence:

Dear young Xmac
Stop slouching! Everything that is happening to you now may look hopeless upfront, but hang tough and you will survive. You'll be ok, really. You'll see.

please rescue the Matchbox cars you hid on the toilet window sill before you forget where you put them!

please stop Mom from selling off your Star Wars action figures at 5¢ apiece! They'll be worth a fortune someday, I'm sure of it!

Sigh... my two biggest childhood regrets.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ready to fly

The soon-to-be-graduating class of mine. Sorry about the picture quality. This is a scan of a colour print on A4 paper, but it's the only shot of all of us as a group that I have. So far I've been blessed with Civics groups that have left me with good memories. x34 is no exception. Only a couple of days left before Pet (co-civics tutor) and I kick them all out of the nest. We'll miss you; and -- we mean this in the nicest possible way -- don't come back! *sniff... waves hanky

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The marriage equation

Responding to NBS's post on 'Soulmates', we often have the misconception that in marriage the equation works out as 1/2 + 1/2 = 1, by which we assume that we are incomplete until another completes us. That's not going to happen. A person who only feels like 1/2 and seeks an identity in another is going to be disappointed that the perfect "1" will always seem elusive, unattainable even.

Marriage is more of a 1 + 1 = 2 situation -- a partnership of 2 complete individuals who are different from each other, but preferably in a complementary way. Because marriage comprises 2 complete individuals, staying together is a constant choice they must make with every obstacle or difficulty they encounter as a couple.

Kids add a further complication. They cannot be expected to be complete in themselves until they leave to build their own nests. So, 1 + 1 + x/2 = 2 + x/2. Chaos ensues.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Grand Theft Auto

Last Friday, Wayne's car was spotted parked in the campus porch area -- in a lot designated 'Reserved'. He'd parked it there with the intention to make a quick getaway for the weekend as soon as he was done for the day.

The next time he saw his car again, it had mysteriously moved back to its usual parking spot behind the canteen. Strange things happen if you park in unaccustomed areas, but leave your keys unattended within easy access of well-meaning individuals.

Huh? What do I know about Wayne's car? Er... it's red?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Getting Steamed

Got my hands on Civ V. It was a total pain to install because the DRM relies on the player having a Steam account beforehand. That's not the problem because lots of other games have similar requirements. Steam, however, insists on updating itself upon installation... and hangs at downloading the update patch as it can't connect to the Steam server, for some reason.

After some searching over the 'net, I finally found this solution that worked for me: click here. Thanks, daveske!

Oh, make sure you first backup the file he suggests you edit -- just in case.

As for the game itself, er... I'm still messing around with the tutorials. Civ V looks like it has a lot of depth to come to grips with. Not quite ready to start a proper game, hopefully I be will soon.