Death to Chain Letters, Web Awards and Other Grumpy Hermit Musings

One random wall-of-text fact about Jeromai:

I murder chain letters. I take great delight in breaking chains that run on fear and superstition, trusting in science, RNG and the general unfairness of the universe to leave me blissfully unscathed from whatever heinous doom was supposed to fall on that most dastardly of souls, the one-who-*gasp*-broke-the-chain.

That said, a blogger friend whom I respect and enjoy reading has nominated me for a not-to-be-named-here thingummy, leaving me in the decidedly awkward position of not actually minding answering a few questions from one friend to another, while not actually wanting to perpetuate something that sends someone else’s (whom I don’t know, and know not their motives) SEO skyrocketing.

I’m also okay with the spirit of the thing, which seems to be to highlight less trafficked bloggers or friends whose words you enjoy reading and would like to hear more from, or know more about.

I just really really detest that it’s wrapped up in a) a web award format (I don’t understand the appeal of decorating one’s website with a random graphic saying that you won an award, hell, I don’t understand why people go to meaningless (as in stuff everyone can win or fake ‘excellent service’ awards a bunch of people make up to soothe their employees’ need for external validation) award ceremonies in real life either) and b) a chain letter format.

So eff that.

Format stomped on. It’s dead.

Now I’m just here to answer some questions, share a few less-known bloggers whom I enjoy reading, and then ask a few of my own, throwing open the floor to -anyone- to respond and share if they want to, whether I name you specifically or no, or whether you’re even a blogger (maybe you’re just one of my favorite commenter persons instead.)

I do not drink soda. (Especially not after ballooning in my youth from a daily Coca Cola habit, sorta like a Super Size Me documentary in real life.)

I don’t watch enough TV these days to have a current favorite show or a celebrity crush. I could point y’all to ancient history and recommend Babylon 5 as my favorite show of all time instead.

As for celebrity crushes, had a bunch, and they’re still mostly ancient history, given my lack of current TV or movie keeping up with, but you know, I think Holly Marie Combs playing Piper Halliwell in Charmed is pretty damn hot.

Asking me for a favorite video game character is like asking me narrow down a single favorite video game. I just can’t do it. Even on my best focused days, I’m playing GW2 and Minecraft simultaneously because each give me different experiences, both of which I enjoy and need.

As long as the video game character fits the story the game is telling, then they’re a favorite because they’re who they need to be.

Asking me for a favorite genre of music also falls in the above category. I listen to pretty much anything and everything, and I just keep what I like. Pop rock, musicals, filk, country, symphonic metal, mashups, yeah.

Sting is a perennial favorite, his repertoire is extensive and his lyricism is clever. Been listening to both the Wicked and The Last Ship soundtracks lately. (Jock the Singing Welder is a hoot.) Leslie Fish’s lyrics are either hilarious or awfully sharp or both. I guess I haven’t been listening to much country lately, but I used to enjoy Faith Hill once upon a time. Heather Dale was a really nice Celtic/folklore artist I discovered via Pandora, before they region-blocked me and much of the rest of the world (DEATH TO REGION LOCKS, eesh.) Nightwish and Poets of the Fall are awesome (is POTF considered rock, rather than metal? Who knows.)  And Norwegian Recycling is my favorite mashup artist.

Yes, I drink alcohol. Not in heavy amounts, so as not to kill my liver and kidneys and whatever. I enjoy tasting a variety and a range of good quality stuff, so I dabble with certain cocktails and go on little tasting sprees to sate my curiosity. Beyond craft beers, I ventured into absinthe for a while (really good with coffee), tasted a little sake and decided nah, dessert and ice wines I like, other wines are either too dry or too pricey for me to consider further, and I’m currently eyeing various rums and other liqueurs, but haven’t acted on the desire yet.

It’s a lot cheaper a habit to eat gourmet single-origin 70%+ chocolate (Amedei is awesome) and keep the remainder of the cash for a vast variety of games, than buy 4-5 bottles of good alcohol for a tasting party.

No beard. Scratchy both ways, I should think.

I’d pick enough money to sustain me for life, over life-long love. Not that I don’t think the latter is unimportant, but as we’re right now in the beginnings of what seems like an aging population crisis and seeing how much my family is currently spending on my seriously aged grandparents, a certain pragmatism is telling me that one would have a better time of it if one can afford to pay younger people to look after you in your old age -and- pay for medical care.

If I really loved my life-long love, I wouldn’t want them to end up trying to deal with all the problems without sufficient money.

Several years ago, if my current boss fired me, I’d probably be relieved and happy, cos I was in serious throes of burnout in a more-dysfunctional-than-normal organization.

Now, I’d probably be sad, because I’ve found a niche in a slightly less-dysfunctional-than-normal organization and am being careful about my propensity for obsession and burnout. Getting fired would mean I’d have to run the job lottery all over again and try to find/locate/create a not-so-dysfunctional space for myself /somewhere/.

I’d rather not have to do that until it becomes necessary. (Cynicism tells me it’s merely a matter of time, cos change is a constant and all it takes is a few screwed up individuals to make life difficult for everyone else in the organization.)

Did I start a blog to showcase my writing or just to vent? Both.

Why do I think you nominated me for this award?

Because you want to hear a grumpy hermit rant about death, doom and destruction to chain letters?

Because Jeromai is a weird, eccentric cipher of a person and trying to find out more about the mystery is always intriguing?

And just when I thought I was done, another blogger friend whom I respect and enjoy reading has come up with even more questions. Dammit.

What language would I learn overnight if I could?

Um, it’s a toss up between Quenya (to speak in elvish tongues would be cool), Old English (reading and understanding Beowulf and other texts in the original language would be awesome) and contemporary Mandarin Chinese (because despite a dozen years being educated in it, I still have little to no grasp of it and it would actually be a useful ‘normal’ skill.)

Knowing how easily I get motion sick, I’m not 100% sure a full on VR experience would be great for me. But it’ll have to be whatever incarnation of Guild Wars we’re up to then, because Tyria is awesome and ArenaNet still has the best fantasy artists of our time creating that painterly otherworldly look. (also some pretty solid engineers and network people and programmers and planners for the minimal downtime, minimal lag experience.)

I honestly have no clue what I’d want to say to a dead person, let alone invite them over for tea and biscuits. If I liked what they wrote in a book or so on, their work and wisdom and knowledge exists beyond their individual lives. And they would probably be a lot less impressive in person.

(I’d also be tongue-tied and am generally not very sociable by nature, so… yeah.)

Biscuit recommendations though, the Aussies have it with Arnott’s Tim Tams.

I don’t watch Game of Thrones. Can I just have all the Houses go down in flames, along with House Atreides and House Baenre?

Justice means…

…that I just spent an hour googling up and reading philosophy to figure how to even begin scratching the surface of this question.

When I hear the word “justice,” my first impulse is to think of it in a more legal sense, which I guess, brings to mind more procedural and retributive justice systems. I’m personally a little more in favor of restorative justice than retributive, but one recognizes that all types exist in the world (including the lack of -any- justice or a perversion thereof.)

In the context of the question, it seems to be referring to distributive justice, how goods and resources should be allocated to a populace.

Which then makes me want to ask, “in a game or in real life?”

Games are a smaller, more controlled system with boundaries and rules that can be set by the designers. I’d say they should feel free to experiment with all types, and see how the populace of different games react, a sort of inadvertent social research in a way.

In real life, my belief is that justice is a human created concept. Fairness and altruism has some roots in biology, but a full on justice system seems to be the province of humanity.

Much of the world is already operating on a capitalistic, economically-driven meritocracy, which rewards people (very generally speaking) for the amount of work they do. (Definitions of ‘work’ being somewhat questionable, as some ‘work’ may simply be politicking or maneuvering oneself into a better social position for more benefits.)

Totally equal distribution of goods regardless of what people do wouldn’t work, then no one would do anything.

So I would actually put a vote in favor of a distributive justice system that attempts to counteract and balance out the meritocratic economically-based system steadily widening the rich-poor divide by distributing stuff according to needs – the rich get less (but still get something) and the poor get a little more (supported by societal contribution.)

In no way should it completely -replace- option 1 or option 2 (extremes and black-and-whites are unlikely to happen anyway). but I feel that governments and society and the community (ie. humanity as an organised group seeking the overall best for the group) should tilt a little more to option 3 so as not to leave subsets of their populace behind (where they will end up diminishing the health/wealth of the society anyway).

Yeah, uhh, sorry if you were expecting a simple answer. This is wall-of-text city. My brain just can’t pick an option without explanation or thinking deeply.

Would I accept $100 if the other person got $900? If it’s a one-off ‘free’ payment (as in, not given in terms of return salary for work done and stuff like that), then yes.

The alternative is “punishing” everyone and both not getting a cent. I’ll not cut off a hand to spite my face. Both people benefit, and I could use $100. Especially if you take the same problem and increase it in orders of magnitude, I’ll take $1,000, $10,000 and so on, even if the other guy gets the larger share.

Maybe if it were $10 or $1, then I’ll say, nah, because going without that sum isn’t too big of a deal. Chances are likely, though, most people will offer a fairly even split.

What’s probably more important is that for cases of future interaction, one notes the selfish profiteering scrooges as opposed to the equitable ones. I’d want to avoid getting into future exchanges/deals with those that reserve too large a share of the pot for themselves.

But for a one-off, seriously, I’ll take any no-strings-attached hundred bucks you wanna throw my way. 🙂

I wish I could have favorite midnight snacks. I had a really bad bout of acid reflux a couple years ago and now I obey the oft-repeated advice to stay upright for at least two hours before going to bed, cos reflux really sucks. *sighs* The perils of getting old. I’ll pretend I can, and say a couple spoonfuls of Ben and Jerries’ Chocolate Therapy ice cream. (That’s not that far off a stretch. That’s a favorite teatime or anytime snack.)

A wished-for sequel for a favorite game? Planescape: Torment. (Oh wait.) The Secret of Monkey Island (Hang on.) Guild Wars (Fuck.)

Batman: Arkham Asylum (This is not working, is it?) Defence Grid (*pulls hair out*)

Oh, ok, Grim Fandango, Heavy Rain, and The Wolf Among Us.

I has no MMO home location. I r a nomad.

Beyond a little text room on a MUD that used to be the hangout of my first hardcore guild, when I think of “home” in a game, I think of this place:

My own blogger list, consisting of folks outside what I would term my immediate blog echo chamber (i.e. frequent posting folks who come up with ideas to bounce off, and thus get a lot of link love), but whom I’d love to read more from:

In no particular order (some came on board during NBI and some are old stalwarts whose posting rate has dropped,)

No obligations. Feel free to totally pretend never to have seen this post. I’ll happily take any and all answers from my commenter literati too.

Random questions being made into a list for the hell of it:

  • How much time do you spend gaming each day or each week?
  • How many people do you roughly interact with while gaming, and what’s the extent of your interactions?
  • What emotions do you enjoy experiencing while playing a game?
  • What are some of your favorite genres/settings/worlds to read about in a book?
  • Are they any different from the genres/settings/worlds you might like in a game? (Be it a computer game or a tabletop RPG.)
  • What Warhammer 40k army would you choose (assuming unlimited budget)?
  • ASCII art, yea or nay?
  • Your favorite vegetable, and your most loathed one
  • Unlimited budget, pick one country in the world, that you haven’t been to, that you’d like to visit.
  • You cannot choose a human for your next MMO character. Would you pick a tall race or a short race first? (Width or muscularity, bestial features or lack thereof is up to you.)
  • Wings or no wings?

Go nuts.

Or not.

Up to you.

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6 thoughts on “Death to Chain Letters, Web Awards and Other Grumpy Hermit Musings

  1. […] throws down the gauntlet… […]

  2. Izlain says:

    Since you left some random questions, and so graciously answered my questions, I’ll reply to yours here.

    1. On a typical day I’ll usually spend 1-4 hours gaming, depending on what’s going on. When there’s a trip like there was this weekend, I didn’t game at all. So in a week probably 10-20 hours I guess?

    2. Most of my gaming time is solo as far as I play alone or I’m queuing up with random people online in League or those sorts of games. However, if you count that then I interact with 100s of people a week. But that’s just playing along side to complete a greater goal, we don’t interact after the match. Otherwise it’s the occasional get together with Eri or Doone, or someone else, or perhaps a grouping of us like we’ve done in the past.

    3. I’d say fear is the hardest one to pull off, but I love it when it’s done correctly. I also like the dopamine release that comes from playing games like Diablo or similar.

    4. I probably lean most towards fantasy worlds, but I have found that urban fantasy appeals to me a bit more, at least if you consider Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series urban fantasy. I loved the fictional elements woven into a more modern setting.

    5. No, pretty similar, I like sci-fi/fantasy/cyber/steampunk.

    6. I don’t remember what they’re called, but the Rat race. They just seem cool and I have an affinity for rat races.

    7. Depends. Some of it is pretty cool, but most of it is overused everywhere to the point of being annoying.

    8. Favorite vegetable: Potatoes, but I’ll give a green one as well: Broccoli. Despised? Probably anything from the squash family.

    9. Ireland.

    10. Short race. Always.

    11. No wings. I prefer horns.

  3. […] by some very kind bloggers, namely Missy and Jasyla, to do this Liebster Award thingy. I, like Jeromai, am usually the grumpy old fart who refuses to participate in such shenanigans, but I can’t […]

  4. […] Business Leibed me…? As grumpy at ‘WHY I GAME‘ pointed out its basically a chain letter, one which I think almost all bloggers I read have […]

  5. […] a quick post – I’m well aware that I have Liebster call-outs from Syl and Jeromai and I’ll try and get the answers to both sets of questions, and some of my own, up later this […]

  6. […] gone away from the blogosphere, but I did say that I’d respond to the questions from Syl and Jeromai even though I have no plans to continue the chain – partly because I deeply dislike chain […]

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