University Nevada RENO~!

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Good heavens but this school is horribly designed. I’ll need to take a course on understanding the Campus Map. It does get easier the more often I go there. Just like anything, experience enables confidence. I’ll see what it is like to be a UNR student this semester. In Pre-Calculus (part 1)! I have so much more schooling to go. It will be the dominating factor in my life for the next couple of years. Then it will be a tremendous debt for me to pay off the rest of the time. How exciting.
So what now. I’ve been reading The Demon-Haunted World by Carl Sagan for the last few months. It is taking me a very long time to get through this book because I keep losing interest because there are no singing animals or hot dudes. But here are some great quotes:

    “Because science carries us toward an understanding of how the world is, rather than how we would wish it to be, its findings may not in all cases be immediately comprehensible or satisfying. It may take a little work to restructure our mindsets.” (p. 29)

    “Scientists do not seek to impose their needs and wants on Nature, but instead humbly interrogate Nature and take seriously what they find.” (p. 32)

    “The Man in the Moon is in fact a record of ancient catastrophes–most of which took place before humans, before mammals, before vertebrates, before multicelled organisms, and probably even before life arose on Earth. It is a characteristic conceit of our species to put a human face on random cosmic violence.” (p. 45)

    “I try not to think with my gut. If I’m serious about understanding the world, thinking with anything besides my brain, as tempting as that might be, is likely to get me into trouble. Really, it’s okay to reserve judgement until the evidence is in.” (p. 180)

    “better the hard truth, I say, than the comforting fantasy.” (p. 204)

Back to the topic of Reno: Have you BEEN to the downtown Reno library? The place probably hasn’t been updated since the 1960s or 1970s and I truly hope it doesn’t ever, to preserve its historic charm. There are islands of reading nooks seemingly floating in midair. Stairs all over the place. Plant-life spilling over from every platform. It’s amazing. The one time I went there, a woman starting asking me, as though I worked there, how to use the internet. I told her she would need to ask at the counter. She loudly argued with me, wanting information from me. Such classic customer behavior. I don’t miss working with the public at all. The problem with the downtown library, ultimately, is that it is downtown. Well, look at me being all elitist.



•February 5, 2009 • Leave a Comment

The video game!

The video game!

At Game Stop one day I found this Playstation 2 game in the used section. It’s apparently an old game but I’d never heard of it. Probably because it isn’t the type of game the gamer enjoys. It’s like Animal Crossing combined with Sprung (a DS dating game only one person ever played). The concept of the game is to get as many kisses as possible from the persons in the neighbourhood. If you don’t, not only is your father ashamed of you but you aren’t popular and the girl of your dreams will not consider kissing you. It’s a bizarre world, this game. Incredibly cute though. When your character (who you can name whatever you choose—mine’s named Wesley) kisses, his lips push out and the most exaggerated kiss sound is made. The underground citizens are a bunch of strange creatures that live under sewer grates and pop out of the ground at certain times of the day to run their assorted errands.
Mr. Retired Bucket

Mr. Retired Bucket

Mr. Retired Bucket, for example. I guess if you were a retired bucket you’d be as surly and depressed as he. When you peek into his house you see him rolling back and forth writing sad statements as above in his diary. When you run into him above ground he’s hiding out by trash-cans posing as one himself. Wesley is a poor boy who finds his wealth by rummaging through cans so naturally he’s enticed. The danger in sorting through garbage is coming across nasty things however.


Mr. Retired Bucket, however, is angered and will beat up Wesley for this. And when a character beats you up you lose your hearts (your self-esteem, your courage) which you can only gain back by eating sweet potatoes, getting kisses, or going to sleep. Trying to kiss characters when they don’t want one will get you beat up in such a way and depending on the character the damage can be great (and frustrating). You have to wait for the perfect time to attempt to kiss him. At some point, depending on the character, the underground citizen will calm down and get lost in his thoughts, he seems slightly hypnotized and his head waggles stupidly. Birds sing and a halo of hearts encircle his head. Quickly you have to kiss him. If you get the timing right you are sent into orbit kissing happily. Fireworks explode around you and you float in the air. It’s a beautiful thing. The citizen is pleased and often will award you for your kiss. This is so ridiculous and bizarre that I can’t imagine anyone not smiling at this. Or laughing delightedly. The peculiarity of the characters is wild and quirky from the aggitated Utility Pole to the statue lion who runs a bath house and falls in love with people who bathe perfectly.
All these great things I have to say about the game but as it progresses it becomes too hard. It’s cute how angry the citizens become when you try to kiss them the first time but every time you lose all your hearts you have to start over. It becomes repetitive and annoying and after a while not worth the trouble. I’m hoping to beat the game soon but for now I am taking a break. Just writing this makes me want to take it up again though. The strangeness of the game is a great thing to take in at bed-time to ward of the strangeness of reality.
If you like a game that isn’t about fighting and violence, where conflict is minimum (dastardly conflict!) this is a wonderful change.