Day 79 

Procrastination: too much or not enough?

So, this is my first blog post in seventy six days, why you ask? Procrastination. I originally intended to have a few days of a gap and then write about it, alas, it didn’t seem quite enough because a more extreme version would be more of an interesting topic. Admittedly, after the first thirty days or so, I completely forgot. I was given the ol’ reminder every now and again but procrastination had it’s hold and made me swear I’d get around to it – well now I have. 

The question is: is procrastination a bad thing? I mean, there’s plenty of historical situations that could’ve been less horrific or avoided entirely if only people procrastinated more, but we would also get a lot less done if it was too rampant, and things would suffer. So is there a correct amount of procrastination? Is there a cut-off point for too much or not enough? I’ll let you think about it, and I’ll come back to this later…


Day 3 

Lifelike video games

For some reason I woke up thinking of video games and how companies are constantly creating better graphics in an attempt to portray as much realism as possible. I think it could be achieved with minimal changes to the actual graphics of the game.

I’ve decided to use Super Mario as an example, allow me to set the scene. 

Goombas are moving towards our hero at a slow pace and with an angry face, they’re probably unhappy that you’re about to squish them for points, I know I would be. Behind them in the two-dimensional distance are flying turtles, not something we would normally see, but to Mario that’s an everyday occurrence and another opportunity for more points and thus more lives, of course he’s going to jump on them and rip their wings off, who wouldn’t? Even further in the distance you can see Mario’s aim, a flag post just about showing the flag waving in the breeze above the wall prior to the castle he desperately needs to get to. Despite some of the tragic events that happen over the time of his adventure it is mostly sunny, which I assume means the world is quite a nice place when he isn’t frantically chasing after a princess. A hero’s work is never done. 

Now that I’ve adequately painted a picture (figuratively, not literally), I shall explain how this game could be more realistic without any upgrading of the graphics as seen here. 

A lifelike mode could be enabled after finishing a few levels or some other key event, and then it becomes as real as possible. Firstly, a ball and chain should appear around Mario’s leg with the word “DEBT” printed in all caps, but with a fun font of course, which will restrict his jumping to a point where getting over the numerous tubes is an impossible task. 

To move on through the game you’re going to need to get a job at a restaurant or supermarket nearby, then you can afford lumber to make a ramp over the pipes! Now you’re working smart. Sadly after a few levels of this tactic Mario’s ankle and foot will become increasingly painful as he drags the heavy weight around, luckily he’s got coins from before this event, so paying the hospital bill won’t be a problem.

Fixed and ready to go he manages a few more levels before the pain becomes intense again. This time he’s a little short on cash and can’t afford medical insurance, so for the moment he’s going to have persevere and get as much done as he can before the pain becomes too great. 

The pain is now too much and movement has become extremely limited, time to go see an “off the books” doctor (possibly Dr. Nick from The Simpson’s). Mario is given some strong opioids which relieves the pain, as well as a warning that continued damage to the foot and ankle could result in debilitating injury. Obviously if he wants to save the princess and be the hero, he has no choice but to hobble on.

Skip forward a level or two and he’s no longer moving, the pain annoys him a little but the real problem is now his addiction to strong opioid painkillers. Every chance he gets he’s offering to sell his “services” to Goombas and worse, just to get another fix. As the hero sits in an alley covered in his own blood and vomit he thinks back to when he first began his adventure and how happy he was, with this in mind he pulls out a fire flower and sets himself alight. The usual fireworks fly into the air but on this occasion it’s not to celebrate Mario’s completion of a level, but celebrate his life and all he had previously accomplished.

Game over.

Day 2

Today I’m going to touch on something more serious – the bigotry surrounding the first openly homosexual character in the soon-to-be-released remake of ‘The Beauty and the Beast’. Really it’s a shock that Disney haven’t already had an openly gay character but, better late than never I guess. 

I came across a news story from Alabama where a cinema/movie theatre has refused to play the movie upon it’s release, the owner gave “reason” by saying: “if I can’t sit and watch a movie with God or Jesus beside me then I have no interest in showing it”. This is beyond ridiculous, so what if there’s a homosexual character in it? Don’t you think if God and Jesus were real that they’d have much more important things to do than sit and watch a Disney film with a redneck? How can showing children and even adults that it’s normal for some people to be attracted to the same sex be a bad thing? It’s obviously going to have more positive connotations because it allows a sense of normalcy and belonging that is greatly needed. Also, it’s kinda strange that a gay character would be a problem when a woman falls in love with a creature that resembles a buffalo. 

There’s so many countries/states/cities etc., that are still extremely prejudiced against homosexuality and it is ludicrous. In some countries you can still be killed because the way you were born doesn’t fit in with their stone-age backwater religious “beliefs” (if you can call them that, they seem more like strict rules/laws to me). Even in America there are still twenty two states that can legally fire someone because they’re too effeminate, despite gay marriage being legal. 

I think this should go without saying but I’ll say it anyway – we should not respect the views of anyone or anything that are willing to judge someone, even destroy or end their life, based on the fact that their brain works slightly differently to the majority. Stop apologising for religious bullying and start denying them, if a religion has some followers that are perfectly happy to stick by their guns and promote their obsolete ideals, the secular folk have the right, nay, the obligation, to dismiss their homophobic beliefs and the scriptures from whence these bigoted thoughts began. 

In the words of Todd Stiefel: “I think people need to understand this very specific point. Ideas are not sacred. They don’t need to be respected. People need to be respected. So we do criticise ideas and institutions… including religious institutions”. 

Remember that thought for the next time you witness bigotry based in religious idiocy, and let them know that it is not/has not/never will be acceptable, and hiding behind their “holier than thou” facade will not protect them from scrutiny. Screw religion, respect each other. 

Thank you very much for reading, have a wonderful day/night! (Depending on your geographical location of course). 

Day 1

Give cats better names.

This is my first post in a new blog I have decided to write daily called “the first thirty minutes”. As the name suggests, this blog will focus on the thoughts that begin my day, specifically the first thirty minutes. There will be some entries that are a little more serious and others that will be total garbage, the barely awake mind can be an interesting thing, and I hope to show that to you via this blog. 

Today my brain instantly went to people that claim their cats are like their children. If they really believe that, why do they give them such silly names but their actual children proper names? It’s likely because if you want your child to succeed and not get bullied it’s best not to call them names like Mittens or Snowball, but what about the cats? Do the owners not care if they’re bullied, or get turned around for a job interview? 

Poor Snuffles can’t get a job as a hunter because all of the sensibly-named cats laugh at him, and they refuse his friendship on the grounds that they might get sick (those silly employed cats don’t realise it’s called the sniffles). So instead poor Snuffles lazes about the house feeling useless, waiting for his inevitable end. 

So, if you consider your feline to be like your child – give it a name you would be proud to have. Snuffles would’ve suffered less if his name was Stan or Rob, he’d be fully employed and bouncing off of the walls with purpose. Do that one thing and give a cat a real name.