As I've written about in the past, I think that The Charnel House Trilogy is interesting from a structural perspective. It also has a nice vaguely creepy vibe, very Stephen King, I think.
Monday, May 25, 2015
Saturday, May 23, 2015
Friday, May 22, 2015
Yeah, I don't usually post anything on Fridays, but today is the 35th Anniversary of Pac-Man, a date I find too important to ignore.
As far as I'm concerned Pac-Man is the reason that there is a video game industry at all. (Admittedly, Super Mario Bros. is also nearly as instrumental, since the industry could have died after the flame out of Atari, but Pac-Man planted the seed of interest in the mainstream culture.).
In any case, I enjoy waxing philosophical about Pac-Man games more than almost anything. It's a pleasure to approach something that is so basic in nature and boil it down even more. (Indeed, my piece on Ms. Pac-Man being the Platonic form of the video game is one of my own personal favorite writings as well as my piece on Pac-Man as a form of digital determinism). However, this piece goes out to Ms. Pac-Man's significant other and maybe what his game's themes tell us about gaming and American culture.
Thursday, May 21, 2015
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
I remember when Johnny Carson left the air. It meant something to me as he had been a long running staple on television. I thought he was funny, but I didn't shed a tear or anything. He was an old comedian that belonged to my parent's generations (the Boomers, the Silents).
Letterman's impending retirement, though, which I have been vaguely aware of, was not something that I had thought a great deal about up until now. His departure is strangely affecting to me.
Letterman's original late, late night show (the slot after Carson in the early 80s) debuted when I was 8. In a sense, it has always "been there" throughout my childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. He seems to me a voice that I have always associated with my own generation, though he is more than two decades older than me and my cohort.
Letterman's show after Carson was that strange space where one went sometimes if one was up later than other human beings. It was full of odd celebrities, bands that wouldn't normally be booked on Carson (or later Leno), and a bizarre sense of comedy that was smarter and edgier than Carson or Leno. He was a cynical asshole with a dry wit, and he was ugly and weird and smart.
He was us, a mirror of sorts to the disaffected weird, ugly, smart kids of my generation, and I'm only now realizing that I'm going to miss his presence as some emblem of that.
It makes me feel low.
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
Some stray thoughts on contemporary multiplayer gaming's relationship to the Atari 2600's Combat and to restaurant openings. As you might imagine, I'm not certain that all of these thoughts here are absolutely cohesive. So, the metaphor may certainly be strained more than a little bit.