Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I hate the routine

By: Michael Lenoch

I hate the routine
I hate the routine, the forced lifestyle that all of us must endure,
I hate the routine that has provoked the dark suicidal thoughts in us all,
I hate the routine that makes me grateful for any free time I may have,
I hate the routine that makes me keep track of time,
I hate the routine that forces me to write in order to cope,
I hate the routine that requires no creativity, as those who have mastered the routine, yet are clearly less intelligible than myself succeed,
I hate the routine that surges stress in us all daily,
I hate the routine that mercilessly knocks the inkling of personality we each resembled, prior to our embracing the routine,
I hate the routine that supposedly, will one day make formidable professionals of us all,
I hate the routine that limits our time we spend with our families,
I hate the routine that mandates me to sit in a classroom full of students all day who consider themselves brilliant purely because they happened to fill in answer C, rather than answer A,
I hate the routine that consists of a blaring alarm clock, and a gloomy morning,
I hate the routine that was employed by adults who assume ubiquitous stupidity of teenagers,
I hate the routine that restricts my full potential in activities I consider worthwhile and a possible profession, such as writing,
I hate the routine that has me witness innumerable faces that appear sleepy and lifeless,
I hate the routine that situates me with individuals who dismiss me entirely,
I hate the routine that consists of a large amount of teenagers who have no desire to learn and to succeed,
I hate the routine in which I witness individuals who assume their wit based on the name of the school they attend,
I hate the routine in which so much more could be done other than the undeniably objective, mind-numbing homework we are assigned each night,
I hate the routine in which I must endure a senseless beating of the French language a year behind, when I could be enjoying the brilliant sounds of the German language, a year ahead,
I hate the routine that has me sitting in a stifling library on the fourth floor, contemplating every drawback, and hoping for the most of every hardship,
I hate the routine in which I must suffer criticism, misunderstandings, as well as ignorance,

But I do in fact love the routine in which I can sit down, satisfied, knowing I either contributed to the English language in one form or another, or have at the very least, provoked some sort of questioning.

Monday, August 17, 2009

My Aspiration to Live in Germany

It is senseless,
It is bound in pride,
It is nigh inexplainable,
It harkens to a lack of identity in the land of the stars and stripes,
It makes me question my allegiance to the red, white, and blue,
It shocks me how generic the texts of the land represented by a bald eagle truly are,
It gives me a sense of longing,
A sense of parting from my ancestry, a loss of my heitage and my roots in history,
A yearning desire that envisions myself speaking a language proudly that was spoken by my great fathers long ago,
A culture that is more united than these supposed united states,
A culture that doesn't beat itself up about sports feuds, messy divorces, and petty arguments, debating the implications behind the First Amendment,
But rather, a relaxed lot, who understand the core values of life, and are not driving everywhere by car and chopping every tree in sight to achieve them.

Monday, August 3, 2009

John Davison, the sensationalist

(As a preface, John Davison, former 1up/EGM employee, runs a site called, and is a popular guest on my personal favorite podcast, Listen Up!.)

Lately because I've been listening to multiple podcasts; Gamespot UK podcast, Listen Up!, Giant Bomb, and (World Soccer Daily, although that's irrelevant), I've had a spectrum of opinions throughout the various shows, and have noticed how much of a sensationalist John is. He makes out every game that he spent 5 minutes playing and didn't frustrate him to be the next game of the year. He commonly uses words like "Awesome", "Excellent", "Spectacular", and "Great", which can get a bit confusing. First of all, for the most part, all of the words I mentioned have identical connotations, and when used, can be perceived to pertain to the same standard or quality. I feel John needs to be more careful when speaking about games, because from first-hand experience, I've bought some iPhone games that I've been greatly disappointed with because of how "Good" he describes every game he mentions. John needs to use subtlety to his advantage. He clearly must have no idea what kind of influence he has on gamers -- because if Uncle John says it's good, it's nearly guaranteed the boards will be either up in arms in regret, or in love with John's weekly recommendation by the following week.

I might be taking a bit of a diversion here, but I think John would be better suited talking about books on a podcast. Books educate. Books have never done anything wrong. Books are worth reading even if the subject is not particularly interesting because you are bound to learn something new. And most importantly, books have never wasted anyone's time. John's approach to talking about games is very fey or whimsical. Don't misinterpret this though; what I mean by "fey or whimsical" is that John rarely has had the misfortune of having to take a chance on a game that he has been told was good -- he always has the opportunity to try a game before commiting a purchase by the very nature of his job. John certainly has expressed instances in which he has been burned by buying a game, but he seems less critical if "he spent 5 minutes or more playing a game and it didn't frustrate him". So in some cases, it appears as though he forgot what it means to be a gamer -- and indeed is going on by assumptions.

All in all, John needs to be more careful with his words, not use words like" Spectacular" for every game he talks about, truly get down to what makes a game fun -- not what it is about -- which is inevitably what the show gets caught up in on nearly every show. It's not always worth the time to know what the game is about, but rather whether it is worth my time.