Monday, July 28, 2014

Which Female Harry Potter Character Are You?

Luna Lovegood

You march to the beat of your own drum. Incredibly clever, you are able to look at things in a different perspective than others, giving you valuable insight. A bit of an introvert, you are comfortable in your own company. You know that being yourself is much more interesting than being someone else.

"Things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end, if not always in the way we expect"

Trust Me On The Combat Boots

The following is the text of a speech given by Lara Croft to the inmates at The Royal College of Archeology, Cambridge.

Wear combat boots.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, the wearing of combat boots would be it. The long term benefits of wearing combat boots have been proved by soldiers down through the ages, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now. Listen or else.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your guns. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your guns until they've rusted. But trust me, in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself festooned with all that awesome firepower and recall in a way you can't grasp now how many targets lay before you and how fabulous you really looked cradling all that weaponry. You are not as innocent as some imagine.

Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to survive a nasty spike wall trap while listening to Prodigy on your walkperson. The real troubles in your adventurous career are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, like the kind that stab a spear through the back of your head to remind you to finish off all those underdevloped native peoples whom you've been slaughtering all day.

Do a couple of dozen things a day that scare you.

Shoot. Often and ruthlessly.

Don't be reckless with other people's hearts.

Don't put up with people who want to rip out yours and offer it to their gods.

Save often.

Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, you'll get the bastard in the big climactic scene anyway.

Remember the big cheques you receive. Forget the multitude of bills for damages incurred in your adventures. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old death threats. Throw away your old ammo invoices.

Stretch. Always stretch before a mission. It's a complete pain pulling a quad while 60kays deep into the Amazon.

Don't feel guilty if you end up costing a lot of people their lives. The most interesting people I hardly ever knew didn't know at 22 that they existed only to sacrifice themselves to my ends (as written into the plot). Some of the most interesting people I've as not yet met still don't.

Get plenty of ammunition. And be kind to all those items in your inventory. You'll miss them when they're gone.

Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chances at best. Everyone else who're up against you has much much less than that.

Enjoy your body. Pose it in every magazine you can. Threaten litigation when others misuse your appearance. It's the greatest moneymaker you'll ever own.

Work out, even if you have nowhere to do it but your mansion.

Read the walkthroughs, even if you don't follow them.

Do not read beauty magazines. Those bastard gossip columns spreading evil malicious rumours about you in them will only make you feel angry.

Get to know your programmers. Be nice to your fellow comic stablemates. They're your best link to your future bank balance and the people most likely to stick a knife in you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on as they will eventually become useful to your progress in the adventure. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the further you travel, the more you need the people who supply you with all that ammo.

Live in a Tibetan monastery at least once, but leave before it drives you mad with it's ambient background music. Live in Venice once, but leave before you drown due to lack of air pockets. Travel.

Accept certain inalienable truths: Ancient forgotten continents will rise. Old acquaintances will fall to evil. You, too, will be shot at. And when you are, you'll fantasise that when you were safe, the cover was reasonable, those acquaintances were friendly, and that game designers once respected their main protagonists.

Respect your designers.

Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you might sell a few million copies a go. Maybe you'll have a wealthy software publishing house. But you never know when either might run out of money - and then it's a case of knock-off sequelitis again.

Don't mess too much with your ponytail or by the time you're 40 it will look like a bad perm job gone wonky.

Please remember that advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the cracks and displaying it in a museum for more than it's worth.

But trust me on the combat boots.

Found here...
Story copyright © 1999 snark^

Monday, April 28, 2014

For the Love of NASCAR

In a driver-focused sport such as NASCAR, it has become more difficult for me to maintain the same level of passion when I no longer have a favourite full-time driver.  Some fans are perfectly capable of liking entire racing organizations or base their likes off of car manufacturers.  I've never been able to accomplish that feat.  I don't pick drivers based on who they drive for or what car they drive.  Nor do I pick drivers based on the car number or sponsor.  So I see absolutely no problem in cheering for drivers from two entirely different racing organizations.

But I'm getting ahead of myself so let's start at the beginning.  I should probably mention that I knew absolutely nothing about racing at this point in time.  In the beginning, I noticed Dale Earnhardt Sr.  He was larger than life and his car had the same number that I used for high school track.  So it made it easy to pick him for a start.    Later on, I noticed a lovely pink/black car.  It was the #99 Exide driven by Jeff Burton.  The only thing I knew was he seemed like a good guy.  And so I gave my NASCAR heart to a driver that I knew absolutely nothing about.  He still has it.  Jeff Burton is and will always be my favourite race car driver.

Dale Sr. and Jeff Burton

Fast forward to 2013... My favourite driver announces that he will no longer be racing full time for 2014.  I was heart-broken.  I knew that eventually he would stop racing but even that fact couldn't prepare me for the inevitable.  The only thing that helped ease the pain was the announcement that he would commence commentating in 2015.  So at least I had something to look forward to since he wouldn't be racing anymore.  But now I was facing a season with no favourite drivers.  There are a few drivers that I don't mind winning but none of them hold that same interest that Jeff holds.

Somewhere along the years of watching, I managed to notice two crew chiefs.  Of course they are from two entirely different racing organizations... two different car manufacturers.  But again... NASCAR is a driver-focused sport which makes it difficult to watch without having a favourite driver.  Crew chiefs don't get much of an audience unless there is a rules violation.  Then of course they get slammed by fans of other drivers.  Remember, it's "working in the grey area" if it's your favourite driver's crew chief and it's "cheating" if it's not your driver's crew chief.

Chad Knaus and Paul Wolfe

As a result, I now find myself with a dwindling passion for a sport that at one time I would have never considered missing a single event.  How bad has it gotten?  I've stopped watching NASCAR themed shows like Race Hub and NASCAR America.  I've stopped watching pre-race shows.  I can no longer stand the mindless drivel spewed by the commentators.  I don't even listen to them during the races.  I'm one of the fans in the minority who doesn't care for the "grid walk".

Even the fans are getting on my nerves.  Apparently it's okay for your driver to show some "emotion" but heaven forbid another driver do the same.  You can't have it both ways people!!!  And don't even get me started on the fans who immediately start acting crazy when there is a camera nearby.  I've also heard fans dig through the trash at race tracks in an attempt to find souvenirs.  Seriously?!?  How pathetic do you have to be to search through garbage at a race track?

And while I am on the subject of fans... I'd have to say NASCAR fans are one of the biggest groups of conspiracy theorists out there.  Depending on which side of the fence you are on, NASCAR either gives Jimmie Johnson everything or there is some conspiracy to keep him from winning.  I would think NASCAR would favour Dale Jr since he is suppose to be "most popular driver".  Or even Danica Patrick.  Because let's face it... that girl needs all the help she can get.

So it comes down to one thing... find another driver or find another sport.  I really don't know what I am going to do at this point in time.  So I'll just keep watching and hopefully my passion will be re-kindled one day.  Until then... there's always baseball.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Post In Which I Geek Out

Let's face it. There are a few things in life that I totally and completely geek out over. One of those is kitchen items and one of my favourite stores to go to is Cook's Corner down in Green Bay, Wisconsin. If you ever have a chance to visit Green Bay then its a must visit store if you like to cook or bake.  I'm pretty sure I picked up the cupcake liners at a craft store but the rest of the items came from Cook's Corner.  Ever since I saw Alton Brown use those push-up measuring cups on his show I had to have them.  That is the same reason I got a salt server.  It has come in quite handy during cooking.  On occasion I would look up the measuring cups through Amazon and a few times I almost bought them but never did.  I'm really glad that I didn't impulse buy them from Amazon.  They will be used for measuring sticky items like honey and peanut butter.

These awesome items did not come from Cook's Corner.  They came from an online site called Think Geek.  The two items in the back are ice cube makers but I've seen them used to make chocolate candies.  The one on the left is inspired by the tv show Firefly.  Sadly, it only lasted a season.  Just picture cowboys in space and you get the basic premise of that show.  But the mold is that of the spaceship Serenity.  The other one is of course from Doctor Who... Tardis and Daleks.

And last but not least... these items arrived today.  Yes, I needed R2-D2 measuring cups.  It was just too awesome to pass up on.  Can you just imagine how much awesome mixed drinks will be with Han Solo ice cubes???  The Doctor Who item is a gelatin/cake mold.  There's always room for jello.

And now here is a random geeky fact about me... My first geeky crush was Wedge Antilles.  I even read the X-Wing: Rogue Squadron books about him.  I'd have to get new copies since I seem to have misplaced mine or they got lost during a move.