Monday, November 13, 2006

Bizarre Juxtaposition (what else did you expect?)

It's been 4 – 3 fairly awesome days, and one Monday since my last post.

You know Mondays...

Highlights of the Weekend:

We Live In A Spaceship, Dear”

Remember when I said that a friend of mine was planning to run a Firefly RPG campaign? Who am I kidding? Of course you don't, but that's ok. Well, I got just that happening on Saturday, and I'm craving more sessions. I am the mechanic on our party's salvage ship (yes, we are avoiding lameness and NOT RP-ing the BDHs). It's too soon to say how well the RPG will capture the feel of the show, and the 'Verse in general, but it IS fun, and that's the important thing.

Sadly, the rulebook does not include the Blue Hand Group for use. Probably for the best, as they would be impossible to defeat. Still, why you would make an RPG and not include the baddest motherf*ckers in series cannon is beyond me. Oh, man, they would be fun to LARP: you wear those blue non-latex gloves, and a suit. You'd need an awful lot of fake blood or something...

On another Firefly note, the series will apparently be available in 1080i resolution. If it is worth such attention, you would damn well think it worth more funding. I am well aware that it is WORLDS less expensive to throw us browncoats an HD bone than to give Joss funding for more TV, but I would contend that – through its initial cancellation – the show may have more awareness than it did.

Snappy dialogue is IN, witness the popularity of House.

Gritty Sci-Fi is IN, Battlestar Galactica is proof enough.

Funny Sci-Fi is IN, people seem to be watching the new Doctor Who series.

Serenity was a great movie, IMO. I have my issues, but on its own it was solid.

Firefly was all of these things and more. Why not give it another chance?

My Sunday could not have been more different.

Spinning In His Grave

I'm taking ballroom dancing lessons, and I think I might enjoy them. I was volunteered for an event, which is called (I believe) the Viennese Winter Ball. Benefits other than learning to dance: 20 hours of community service, and maybe meet interesting and/or important people at the event. I'm a little intimidated, but I know not to forget that it is an opportunity to enjoy myself. Dance is, after all, a form of entertainment older than civilization.

Around the time of the first lesson, I wondered how this whole thing meshed with my values. I wondered if it wasn't a sort of selling out, as it were. Ballroom dancing is rather conservative, steeped in rules and tradition. I've never been the best at playing by rules. I have no idea what to think at the moment: does this make me a poseur-leftist? Should I be taking up activism instead? Maybe this is too much about image. I wish I weren't, but I'm horribly self-conscious about my “image”. I'm not even sure I have one, but I can't shake the feeling that what people think of me matters. It's not hubris, I'm just not assertive enough to do what I want without fear of being ridiculed for it...but more on that note in a second.

I have to say, the girls who are auditioning (there would be some guys cut, but the requisite number showed up, no more) are beautiful. Not strictly in the physical sense; they seem like confident, competent women. Maybe the dance floor lends anyone with a little courage that distinction, but that in no way detracts from their own qualities. I'll post some general thoughts once I know the other dancers more. This Sunday was day 1 for me, so there's not a lot else to say. I'll keep you, dear readers (all 4 of you!) up to date, of course.

Some Chicken...” (Apologies to Winston Churchill)

To say that I am a vocal person is, as you know, a gross understatement. As I say in the sidebar, I try to be OK on the whole. So why was I afraid to stand up and be counted today? There is at my school, a Gay-Straight Student Alliance. I think I owe it to myself and others to let it be known that I am ga – just kidding. As a straight dude who has no problem with homosexuality, I should have gone to show my support. There are too many people who wouldn't, perhaps affraid of the association. I think I let everyone down by allowing my misapprehension to get the better of me. I did later find out that it would be worthwhile to have gone if I “had wanted to hear lesbians talk”. I'm rather distraught that few-to-no guys were there. The right to freely choose one's sexual orientation is a human right. Ever heard that everyone should be a feminist, because it means that you believe in equality? Same principal. Unless you are some kinda Nazi, you should support people's sexual freedom. It's not about endorsing one orientation or another: it's about endorsing the freedom to choose.

New Mayor

Ottawa does indeed have a new Mayor: Larry O' Brien

I'm not sure what to expect, but I'm thinking about Transit. The O train was expensive, and kinda useless. Maybe I was expecting some glorious straight-out-of-Sci-Fi supertrain, but I thought it was dissapointing. It was a bunch of diesel motors on a set of tracks, and it didn't go all that fast. A subway, a monorail, or a real train somewhere would have been great options...maybe. In Europe, trains go all over. They make all kinds of sense, because cities are close together, and population density is high. Ottawa is a different story

We COULD have had real transportation in Ottawa...except we paved it over years ago. There was a rail station VERY near downtown, which would have been great. Now we are stuck with either old, intact rail (the current, kinda useless system), or building over the streets. Monorail and subway start to look very good right about now. To be frank, Ottawa is not big, or dense enough to have a viable system. I've been to Tokyo, and the trains there are wonderful. They may be crowded, but you can get to all the important places. In Ottawa, you might as well bus and walk. Which brings me to my next point: traffic congestion. O'Brien wants to get rid of it. Buzzzzzzzt! Wrong! It should be as MISERABLE as can be to drive a car anywhere near downtown. Give busses every advantage, and drive people to use transit instead of individual vehicles. Paris, with narrow streets, and awful traffic: great walking city. The reason OC Transpo is so subsidized here is because people can drive cars here still. If Ottawa wants to grow (another dumb plan), we should learn sooner rather than later that if it is pleasant to drive a car downtown, things will suck.

If Ottawa had to have a rail system, I think the optimum solution would be to connect the suburbs to downtown via point-to-point trains, and then run a monorail or subway loop to all the major attractions/areas in downtown.

At least we're not stuck with the Chiarelli Train.

Good luck to the new Mayor; may he treat our city well.

Now With 20% More ______!

Indeed there have been some changes here. I'm working with the Beta now, after I saw the new features employed on Gold's blog. I'm looking into what I can add to the page now, so there may be further changes.

Ok, I'm a half-hour behind on getting off the computer. There were some more things I wanted to post, so I'll type them up in my room, and USB key 'em down tomorrow. The Environment is on my mind, along with the usual random junk.

The Jester's bag of tricks is never empty


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