Archive for the ‘fun’ Category

Salty drinks make Salty kisses   Leave a comment

Its funny how broken things can still be used.Sometimes I walk around myself, feeling like a sad, emotionally broken creature, who still has use. I sometimes meet an attractive girl, smile with her and spend moments worthy of any number of Dawson’s Creek episodes, then she might flake, and act strange. In moments like these, we broken individuals realize that even though we are emotionally winded and a bit jaded, we still have some use. We pick ourselves up, head out into icy winds and go to bars. We drink and entertain idle conversation, sometimes we don’t mind when strangers look at us with lascivious expressions, lecherous gazes and leering eyes. So in a way, we are broken, yet functional.Like my bike.A few days ago I almost crashed my bike. It was a dangerous affair, with me almost falling face first on the street going at thirty miles per hour. The back wheel was bent out of shape and I was pissed. I was heading to the Giant to get some ice cream for an achy stomach and I almost ended up breaking a collarbone. Long story short, the bike still works. Its broken, yet functional. As I ride through the city I realize the bike isn’t in such bad shape. It creaks and groans like Tony Soprano’s mother, but it gets me from point A to B.Broken yet functional.I wonder sometimes if this is a theme for a lot of people I know. They are injured through circumstance, edgy from limited expecations and a bit frazzled by fortune. They are effectively wading through the marshes of daily life with their nose out of the murky water praying that a Crocodile doesn’t make mincemeat of them.

Today was a day of traipsing. First I traipsed around Chinatown regretting my Alfie-isms. My thin French connection pants, sports jacket and scarf couldn’t save me today. The wind chill brought temperatures down to the twenties and I felt like I was walking in a cloud of ice.

Later I would reach Adams morgan, stopping by Adams Mill for the first time. Even though I consider myself an open-minded equal opportunist, this bar seemed much whiter than any bar i’ve been to in a while. This had to do with the song selection more than the makeup of the patrons. As i’ve stated in a few blogs before, most bars I go to are 98% white. Tonight that statistic was 99.9% until seven or eight black guys walked in, (adding on to me being the 0.1%) and then became the 2%.

Regardless of the math, for about an hour, about 80% of the songs played I didn’t know. When I heard the songs, I immediately thought of wheat field and people in large Suburban houses singing along to these songs as they played through a large, black radio. When the songs played I no longer felt like I was in the confines of a major city, I was out in Connecticut in the boonies, where anywhere to your left or right you were liable to run into a deer, get touched by poison ivy, or get bitten by a tick. I recognized a few key tracks, which populate what I call the “white DJ” list. I’m saying this with no bias. There are certain songs that are played in certain bars that are never played in other bars.

Songs with choruses like:

“Pour some sugar on me!”
“Oooooh! Living on a prayer!”
“I’m not here for your independennnnce!”

And the list goes on. Those are the ones I recognized. For a few minutes, I had a spirited conversation with two friends about not knowing that the last song was not sung by Kelly Clarkson, but by formerly hip-hop-ish punk starlet Pink.

I didn’t mind the music either way. If I was in a bar with 99% black people, I’m sure i’d hear:

“…my drink and my two step”
“this is why we hot”
“i’m a upgrade yah!”

and the list goes on an on. Quite like a broken record. Broken yet functional.

It was Chrissie’s birthday, and she was learning a hot pink shirt with the word “DANGER” emblazoned above the right breast. There was text on the back, but I never took the time to read it. I didn’t feel like dancing, and spent most of my time watching three LCD screens flash
“Tom Brady’s mystery injury continues.” I like watching people drink themselves into supreme states of confidence. A short guy with an interesting haircut had been walking around with a smile all night. I nearly fell down laughing when he literally accosted two blondes.
“Why are you ladies so FUCKING tall??” he said in perfect pitch.
The girls laughed and they started talking.

I sighed. Only in a white bar. No, only in a bar this white.

I’m sure if I was to walk up to random girls and say that I’d be liable to get slapped. Especially since i’m not a short person that can use such profane declarations to my advantage. Eventually some Justin Timberlake started playing and I felt like doing my pop-n-lock routine, but alas, I had no energy.

After Adams mill, I took a quick run to Dupont circle. At this point I really loved my bike. Dupont always sounds like Africa distance wise when I think of walking there on foot, but on my bike it was only five minutes away. I went to Cafe Citron. I was a tad intimidated at first. I was the only black person in line, and everyone had tell tale Latino features. Jet black hair, off-white skin and spanish accents.

Inside, there was a mixture of latin-pop and latin-club music. It was a lot of fun. the place was packed, lots of people were dancing and I had a eight dollar margarita that tasted like a cup of salt water. Even though the DJ was playing remixed latin songs, I heard at least three popular songs remixed to latin beats:

“….I like to move it move it.”

I can’t remember the others, but they were there! Playing like a broken record. Broken yet… you get the idea.

Cafe Citron exposed more of the segregation of DC clubs. It seems everyone can find a place to group up everyone that resembles them, and sweat together as they walk past people that look a lot like them. I need to go to more latin clubs. I felt unnaturally tall in there, as the average person seemed to be no more than five foot six. At six one, I towered over almost everyone. I stood at the bar and beamed a smile at ladies dancing near to me. In my mind I was saying:

Come with me if you want to live.

In my best Arnie voice.

After Cafe Citron, I rode home, listening to FutureSexyLove for what seems like the tenth time in the last four days. I ride, navigating traffic lights, crazy cab drivers and the occasional pedestrian, singing words to high-pitched songs. Its too late to draw any stares from any passersby. Its too cold for people to be on the street gawking at this Jamaican guy riding a bike and singing along to “Sexyback”.

I received at text when I was in Cafe Citroon, a Serbian girl I know told me to come to last call at Bossa–In Adams Morgan–which was a nice 18 blocks away. I shoot a reply.

After party?

She tells me there is something on 18th and Belmont, but then she says not to come. The party is wack. I pop into my room and feel a wave of heat cover my face. I toss my clothes onto my bed, flop into my computer chair and stare at the screen. Maybe I’m not broken and functional.

Maybe i’m just functional.

Asian Invasion and the Jesus Cock Block   2 comments

Alas, it is Saturday, and i’m a little pained up after a long day, and an even longer night. Hardcore soccer after six months of not playing will do that to any man, but going to a club and fighting the futile fight is also a pretty draining experience. (At some point in the night someone WILL be cockblocked by “Jesus”).

Ibiza is a relatively new club on first street in DC near the greyhound station. When we pull up, the line isn’t very long, but then again we are hellishly early for club time, being there at 10:05 to get in free. The first thing I notice is that at least 70% of people in the line, or working at the front are Asian. I know a Korean girl I met over the summer said she had a job at Ibiza, but I didn’t realize it was part of some, unseen Asian coalition. After a few minutes of idle conversation in the line, we enter.

I was 25% impressed. Only 25 because I don’t like going to clubs for a myriad reasons. Secondly, whne you step is there is a HUGE dounut shaped lounge area recessed into the floor. It looks pretty cool, but unless I was lucky that night, I probably wouldn’t be sitting there. I didn’t walk into the club going “wow”, but more like “hrm”. It was part warehouse meets hotel lounge.

The crowd at first was pretty mixed. A smattering of Black,White,Asian and Latino people. However, this would change drastically within only an hour of reaching the club. After another 45 minutes passed, I felt as If I was at a club in a foreign country. Almost everyone in the immediate vicinity was Asian. Many of the bartenders were hot Japanese-looking chicks, or part-time Asian male models, and a large number of the patrons on the dance floor were Asian as well. Now, I don’t mind the Asian thing, I’ve even dated a few Asian girls, but this was taking the club thing to an extreme. Not only do I dislike clubs because sometimes being a minority in certain clubs either really goes in your favor, or makes you the really awkward sweaty black guy dancing too fast in the middle of the club, but this was crazy.

I was in a majority minority situation.

I didn’t want to go to the club. I dislike clubs because they are very impersonal, overtly superficial and 99% a waste of my time. Though I might be wrong, I’m convinced that the nature of clubs only work for people who are (a) extremely attractive (b) a part of the social group in the club (c) club owners and affiliates. Either way, as the night went on my friends and I had a few stilted conversations with girls that ended up ignoring us (go figure) and then, jaded and disgruntled, I put forward the option to head to Wonderland.
Wonderland, as usual, was supposed to be my Friday night outing. Wonderland’s weird, almost Dimension X feel draws me in and makes me feel relaxed. There I know I can have fun. Big club full of cute Asian girls in the middle of DC? No chance.

When we are heading out we find out they have lost my friend’s credit card and his driver’s license. This adds another 30 minutes to our Wonderland departure time. For our wait, we are given a few bottles of water to drink( I swear someone got maced somewhere in the area, but they say that’s not club policy), but then a bouncer tells us we can’t leave the club with the bottles of water. At this point I don’t care. I’ve already resigned myself to the fact that I won’t go to a club for a long, long time. I can never understand the atmosphere. Maybe its just me. Sometimes I think I am a cell-phone/club pariah.
Yes, a pariah.
Its not the most inspiring thought, but its all I can come up with. The club scene is a bit gay. Gay in the way that makes a guy feel like a loser when really he’s only a loser at big clubs :p
We head to Wonderland and reach there around 1:45 a.m. Even at that late hour, things are still swinging and I feel like slapping myself for going to Ibiza and spending too much money on drinks that cost half the price at Wonderland. The after effects of a work-laden-patronage-out-on-the-town are obvious. People are still chatting excitedly, a lot of people are drunk, and all around people seem “happy”. I know if I had come there at 11, I might have been there just in time to meet a nice little lady, just itching to chill with a Jamaican.


We go upstairs and my friend follows this Filipina looking girl with a great body. She was wearing something that loooked like Moccasins, which was odd for early Fall fashion, but it worked. My friend kept commenting on her ass, and how great it was. Personally, I was in a blurry place. After a long stressful week, my Friday was completely wasted. The images that kept running through my head were seeing the single Asian guys that came in, all have girls on their arms about the time we were leaving.
“Argh!” I shouted.
My friend was trying to squeeze in on the girl with the indian boots, when Jesus (I kid you not) zooms in front of him, effectively creating a wedge between them both. “Damn,” my friend said.
“I got cock blocked by Jesus.” I laughed when I heard this. The guy was the splitting image of the stereotypical white-jesus. Long hair, fuzzy beard, calm-ish demenaour sans the halo. He was wearing a faded read shirt that read “Do it for the cookies!” (whatever that meant).
Wonderland started dying down and I ended up sitting on the stoop of my friend’s place a block away in a group of five, delineating on the discourses of attractive people and how much easier their lives are(I did not initiate this conversation). We sat and we drank beers. My friend who was previously cock-blocked by Jesus found a good chatting companion in the sister of a friend of my friend. As they were talking, I could see her comfort level rising. Even being cock-blocked by Jesus wouldn’t stop him this night.
After another forty-five minutes of pointless conversation, everyone was asking for food.
“Where is some fucking food!” the sister of the friend of my friend asked me. After scratching my head a bit, we ended up going to a 7-11 up the road (but not after trying to jump and grab onto a tree branch 19 feet above us…Twice.) During this time period, the sister of the friend of my friend calls my friend “cute” and shows him definite signs of interest. He is definitely “winning” as we like to say. I smile to myself, marveling how the after effect of Wonderland is so powerful, that good things flow even when we aren’t there.

Then I remember that I haven’t been called “cute”, “attractive”, or much less anything for as long as I can remember (even when I was dating ). So again, my Friday night was a waste.
But I learned two things.
(1) There are a LOT of Asian people in DC
(2) If Jesus-cock blocks you, its to point you in the direction of something garaunteed.
Today is Saturday, hopefully I can “win” this weekend, or I will jump into a pot of boiling oil, or just watch C-Span for hours on end to torture myself.


Posted September 22, 2007 by marcusbird in asian, bars, black, club, college, cool, discources, doom 3, fun, hip, Ibiza, invasion, jesus

Lonely heart + Cold = Hit Song   Leave a comment

(me at the National Gallery of Art in late 2006)


I’m incubated.

I’m locked into that cycle of in the house doing work, out to class to spend hours in lectures, and then back into the house to do more work. I broke this down with my friend today. When an able-bodied young man finds himself watching 4400 at six p.m on a random Tuesday evening then you know something is wrong. But this is real life.The reality of certain things were unveiled to me when I moved off-campus two years ago. Firstly, when you live seven miles away from a social hub (i.e college). There willl be no one to speak to save your roommate, and no where to go. Secondly, you desire to do less. Basically everything else becomes important. How well food tastes, how comfortable your bed is, how funny that romantic comedy you watch by yourself is, etc. I was walking to class today listening to an Our Lady Peace album, Spiritual Machines, and it sounds like the soundtrack to my life right now. Track 4, “Life”, starts out with a few questions that everyone can relate to:

“How many times have you been pushed around? Is anybody there? Does anybody care?”

“How many times have your friends let you down? Is anybody there? Did anybody stare?”

Introspective questions run abound in this track, and then it goes into a melancholy (yet oddly uplifting) chorus, where leader singer Raine Maida tells me that ‘Life is waiting for you’. The Peace has been known to drop sometimes cryptic lyrics onto their fans, but I felt chills hearing these questions asked to me by someone I don’t know. Then, on track 7, “Are you sad?” it asks even more questions:
“Are you sad? Are you holding yourself? Are you locked in your room? You shouldn’t be….”

Too often I have felt like this person… sometimes a bit trapped by circumstance, or something else. Its the working grind of the world that keeps us in that bubble of limited social interactions.
Even though I do have classes with people I interact with THEN, when the day ends everyone goes their separate ways. I go home, and listen to depressed millionaires sing about their life’s discourses.

I think this is part of being a writer, or an artist. I’m not just sitting by myself staring at the ceiling, getting familiar with little cracks in certain spots, I’m being proactive. I sit, I write, I design, I do a lot of things. But as I told my friend from a class today, “If no one knows you, no one can ever know you are talented.”

I think I’m having an off day again. The work load of school is normalizing. This means for me that things are reaching a natural order where I know what I have to do to maximize my time in classes and so forth, but dammit it gets really lonely sometimes. Its also starting to get cold, meaning if I am going to get in the groove with some people, i’ll have to do it soon. Or I will be “holding myself” in my room, amidst the eerie pluckings of some faceless man’s guitar.

No one can really describe certain kinds of loneliness. It sits on your tongue like the leftover taste of flat soda, and tugs at your hair like an inattentive child. I’m sure the loneliness a business CEO with 14 hour days, millions in the bank and no time to socialize is uniquely different from a college kid who spends his days writing and doing classes. But at the end, they are both suffering from a mild form of social disconnect; a lack of options.

I don’t think i’m sad, but man, sometimes I feel like i’m halfway there. But I will press on… keep writing, with my eye on the prize.

Best Week Ever!   Leave a comment


My title is horibbly deceptive. Last week wasn’t the greatest week, but I did feel like I accomplished a lot. With an 18 credit load, lack of sleep and feelings of mania crawling up my back, I still managed to do a lot of design-work, kept blogging and deal with my course load for classes.
My most interesting part of last week were my late night trips to Kinko’s to make this birthday gift for my ex-girlfriend. Yes, yes, I know what you are saying, I’m a loser.

I went to a meeting today for my school paper and one of the offered articles related to OCD. I wonder if I have a compulsion when it comes to design and writing. Maybe its my outlet, or my mojo or whatever. But there was one night after traveling for about an hour in total time (walking, waiting on bus, then walking some more) the Kinkos I went to was locked. I thought about smashing the large glass pane and doing my copying then. But I doubt the officers would believe I was trying to spend a few bucks doing copies.

So it was a long, involved week, with emotional ups and downs, and the release of that emotion during the weekend. It got released because the week ended. Today was an amazingly productive day. I did a ton of homework, two cartoons for the day, a presentation for class, and i”M about to start doing some script editing. Maybe I’m not doing as much as say–the CEO of GE, but i’m trying to maintain. I’m idle and e-mailing random people on the “w4m” section of Craigslist as a social experiment. Who knows, maybe it will give me something to write home about.

The Futile Fight   Leave a comment

The project i’ve been mentioning intermittently in these blogs (Three Weeks and Hurricane) is my first real attempt at writing non-fiction. It has to deal with me, and me trying to find out my next step in life, by using a month in Jamaica for that EXACT purpose. Now, to make life easier next time I feel like writing non-fiction, I will write essays (probably short blogs) to capture some prevailing thoughts of mine, so that as time passes I’ll find it easier to write non-fiction. To me, even non-fiction must have some kind of story, or a framework someone can follow. I’m not sure if I have that specifically in TWAH. I’ll have to polish the story, and do some heavy re-writing (like any book) but I think the “theme” of non-fiction needs to be captured in a certain viewpoint, consistently over time. The Emotion can’t vary too much, nor can the feel.
So, I think this is me trying to document my thoughts for another project possibly in the future.

The Futile Fight

My friend and I are heading to a party called Wet in Georgetown. Its Saturday, and I spent Friday night at their place in Silver Spring to escape the noisy ravages of the Northwest DC. I like Silver Spring. It has a clean, well-combed vibe to it that always makes me think of family and kids. This is probably a biased perspective, because there is a particular area in downtown Silver Spring where they have Astroturf setup. On any given sunny day, you will see parents with their children roaming about, tossing projectiles and spilling liquids. My friends live no where near this area. They are about ten minutes up the road in a quiet housing complex. A friend of mine, a cool Italian guy who uses “Fuck” after every tenth word, tells me to head to this place called the Blue Gin for a free party.
“Come man, its gonna be great you know, fucking hot bitches and what not my man. ” I laughed as he said this. However, it was Saturday night and like many stressed out college seniors, I needed something to do.
Whenever I think of Georgetown, two things come to mind. A certain smell, and an image of a certain strip on Wisconsin Avenue. I’m assuming these two things pop into my head first because when I went to the Georgetown Mall for the first time, it had a very odd smell, like someone sprayed Gucci No.5 in a bathroom occupied by a troop of red bull-amped chimps. The second image i’m sure is based on my previous French Connection obsession (possibly 30% of my wardrobe is french connection) and that was one of the first stores I would frequent. My two images aren’t the common representation of the town. I’d say that most people (who dont’ live in Georgetown) think of two things when they go there, Money and stuffy people. I personally don’t like to cover everyone in a demographic under a certain blanket, but being at a club in Georgetown really does remind me of some of the really “uptown” parties I go to in Jamaica. The normal setup seems to be a lot of very nicely dressed people standing up, talking with people they are familiar with, and then ignoring everyone else. I’m sure this formula doesn’t hold all the time, but like most people who don’t live in Georgetown. I don’t care. That’s just how it seems.
I’m venturing to the club this night simply because the week has been filled with stressful night and annoyingly long classes. Like most parts of the city, finding parking is next to impossible and I end up going to the club first while my friend looks for parking. For September 15, it is unusually chilly and I frown slightly thinking of the grisly winter about to come. Blue Gin is in an alley between an Abercrombie & Fitch and Benneton store. I recognize the spot, the last time I went there was with my very assertive Moroccan friend who scoffed at the prices of the drinks and demanded to go somewhere else. After I schmooze with the bouncer a bit, he checks my name on a list to get into the private party upstairs and I go inside. Its a very nice, high-endish lounge with soft lighting, a few nice bars with plush leather couches and glass tables. The crowd is relatively mixed in the usual Georgetown way, a delicate sprinking of mostly white, mostly Middle-eastern people then a drop of two of any other minority groups. I go upstairs and greet my friend Mr. B who’s with his girlfriend. We have a few moments of small talk and in between I survey the crowd.
Everyone seems like the white collar types, milling about on their third drink. I see a lot of cute girls, but i’m not inspired. Its only 11:30. I’ll have to see if the mood of the place changes in an hour or so before I can dub the event a “flop” or “hot”. I get a drink and sip on it while I watch the crowd some more. The birthday girl is a slim, attractive blonde with pretty eyes. She walks around almost on her toes, smiling and taking pictures. I hear its her twenty-fifth birthday. I immediately assume she is wealthy, has a GREAT job and would never speak to me.
I tell her happy birthday the next time she walks past me.

By the time my friend finds parking and comes into the club, I’ve been talking with Mr. B’s girlfriend and her two friends and found some interesting information. One friend will be leaving on Tuesday to go to New York to be a producer for the MSNBC show HardBall. The other girl, when I asked her “What do you do?” she smiled, looked to the left as if to say ‘ How do I say this?’. Then her friend, Mr. B’s girlfriend touched me and said “She’s a dancer.” “A dancer?” I said repeated. “No, she’s actually a stripper.”
They both laugh and I take another look at her friend. She is attractive, with long jet black hair, and a shapely body, but I wouldn’t have pegged her for a stripper. I hadn’t even been to a strip club in DC yet. In between calling a strip club a “Gentleman’s club” and laughing amongst each other about something happening near the bar, I left and went downstairs. The music had started to pickup now,( meaning the DJ got smart and started playing Hip-hop) and I headed to the dance floor. This is where the “Futile Fight” begins. The first thing I notice is what I call the “defensive formation”. Like the Roman Phalanx, women who go to clubs have a formation I call “The Ring.” Its pretty explanatory. The girls form a ring and dance and laugh amongst each other while any guy who tries to break this formation generally gets rejected. The only thing I’ve noticed with this military exercise is that as ‘the ring’ grows in size if two or three guys come in all at once, its hard for the other friends to help them reject the fellow,s.

I’m on the dance floor and I see three rings. In the corner six very cute girls dance with themselves with their backs turned to everyone. Beside me, a gorgeous Euro-looking chick and her two Indian girlfriends are dancing three millimeters apart. Behind me, a gaggle of black chicks dance in a similar ring. To the left of them, a mixed bag of Asian and white girls are dancing as well, also in a ring. I see four guys try with different groups to get a dance, or to get in, and they are all shot down. I don’t try anything. I’m dancing by myself and having enough fun to not be depressed. I’ve seen “the Ring” so many times that if I go to a club where there are more than five rings I either dance by myself or leave shortly after. A friend of mine once told me, “Guys are so grimy in the club. All they want to do is grab your ass and try and sleep with you that night. When I go to the club, I go to have fun, so I don’t dance with anyone.”
To this, I chuckled. Of course there are guys who go to clubs to do just that, but most guys are insecure, working and have little time to socialize. They go to clubs to meet women, end of story. So i’m thinking, If I go to ten clubs in a night, and let’s say 90% of the girls who I like don’t want to dance/meet anyone. Then no matter how good looking you are (this actually might help ) you might be fighting an uphill battle. Add to that the fact that a lot of people dress and act the same, so there is nothing really to distinguish you from anyone else. 99% of the black guy in the club had shaved heads and had on similar outfits (light coloured dress shirts, nice pants). 90% of the white guys in the club were dressed in a similar fashion also. What distinguishes everyone? Well, for the black guys they had different heights, skin tones and builds. For the white guys, they had different color hair, heights, and builds. But let’s say for the most part everyone looks “the same”. What’s going to make you anymore interesting than me? Since all black men supposedly can dance, what’s to make a girl want to dance with me more than the next guy? Or, what’s to make a girl think this guy over here has a better job than that guy?

Futile fight? Who knows. But I left the club after an hour and headed to Wonderland, on 11th Street in Northwest DC. I headed upstairs to the dance floor and a slovenly looking man in a red shirt rested his hand on my chest.
“You’re overdresed.” he said.
I glanced at his hand. He patted my chest again.
“You’re overdressed.”
He walked away and I smiled to myself. In a Sports Jacket I was overdressed for Wonderland, which is a residential bar in Columbia Heights (everyone was wearing a t-shirt). But I was more comfortable. Wonderland broke the mold. There were no rings. I might not have a victory, but its not that much of a futile fight.

* * * *

Half-life 2 got Pwned: Enter “The Piccard”   Leave a comment

Okay, my title really has nothing to do with anything. I’m just trying to get more subscribers with catchy title headings. The demands of my day to day have been starting to get to me already. I have scripts to write, papers to hand in and i’m always up and down as the cartoonist trying to get something done. Add to that some design work, several books to read and the “bachelor” life and you have a recipe for burnout. So i’ve been using what little free time trying to get back into my gaming.

Gaming has always been a fun enterprise for me, and now with my new computer, I think I can start feeling that nice squishy feeling inside I used to feel when I was 18. In my Freshman year, I had no computer for the entire first semester, and I was envious, because all the guys in my dorm were playing Counterstrike till the wee hours of the morning. For those who don’t know what Counterstrike is, is was a “mod” (meaning modification) based on the original Half-life game engine. Half-life is one of the most successful video games in history, and Counterstrike is certainly the most successful Mod ever. Either way, the game works on a Agents versus Terrorists split. Either you are a terrorist, using Ak-47s and other weapons worthy of a cell, or you are a counter terrorist, meaning your guns and armour are better …sort of. Either way, coming from the stilted internet in Jamaica at the time (we had a measly 56K at the time), I was fascinated. Not only could I play online at blazing speeds, but with SIXTEEN people at once! It was amazing. Needless to say, when I got my computer in Spring of 2001, I didn’t sleep. Actually at the time I was suffering from severe insomnia, but Counterstrike was there to keep me company. I can’t describe how it feels for a guy who existed in a non-broadband society to jump into the bosom of super-fast downloads and ridiculous bandwidth. It was like a drug.

So flash forward seven or so years, and i’ve gone through a few gaming evolutions. My game of choice since day one has always been ID software games, since Wolfenstein and Quake are tattooed on my left butt cheek. (kiddding). As these games got more awesome, my sucky system couldn’t play them. It reached a point where all I did on my machine was write, and do graphic design because I couldn’t play any video games properly. I had a Gateway, which was a 1.2 gHz machine with I 512 megs of RAM and a 30 gig harddrive for two years. The harddrive died a few times, and then I upgraded to a bigger drive, same machine. Then one day I felt my computer crashed (actually it didn’t ) and rushed and bought what would be dubbed ” THE BEAST”.

Here’s where the story gets interesting. Currently i’m on “BEAST” number four, but I think that name is jinxed, so I’ve dubbed my new machine, “The Piccard”. Beast number one was a cool Pentium 4 with a gig of SDRAM (really really good ram). It worked great for a few months, but the started making noises like the kid in The Grudge when I was playing and then it died. Enter beast number two. This I actually bought from a friend of mine when he upgraded. This was a better machine, with a 64 bit chip, 1 gig of RAM and a bigger harddrive. I could play heavy hitters like Doom 3 and Half-life 2 on this one. Not maxed out (meaning all settings put to high) but I could run them. Then that died a mysterious death. Then my most recent machine ( you can check an earlier blog relating to my computer woes with that one) started acting funny and now… THE PICCARD is here.

This machine is a beast. It PWNED halflife on max settings. it PWNED Bioshock two and Quake Wars. If I wasn’t tired from school, jaded from lost love and a little bit hungry right now, I would be playing games into the wee hours of the morning. I thought it fit that I devote a blog to my new computer. A cool, dual-core “beast-esque” machine with Windows Vista (gay…) and enough bells and whistles to keep me well into next year. Like Piccard, I will go where no one has gone before.

Into the max-out-everything-verse. :p

IPOD – TOUCH ME   2 comments

Today isn’t a great day for me. As you can see i’m doing my second blog of the day. I’m hurting a bit right now, because of an event that happened on Friday night that I can’t get into. So, like most people, I’m trying to distract myself by either eating too much, watching tv, or spending money. As it stands, I really don’t want to go down a self-destuctive path, so I decided to research the new Ipod, a.k.a “The Ipod Touch”and blog about it. I wouldn’t call myself a technophile, and I am a skeptical early adopter (I learned my lesson after the Ipod Video came out). This new version of the Ipod excites me somewhat. Hey, I’m bored, single with nothing to do. A cool device that has a cyborg like sexiness has appeal in our wired world of today.

I’ve owned almost every version of the ipod ever made. This hasn’t been by choice. I bought the third generation thinking it was a godsend. I like the way little red lights lit up the buttons on the Ipod face, and even though it was pre click-wheel, it was still pretty easy to navigate. One night I went to a club my friend worked at. It actually wasn’t a club, but this cool Sushi restaurant called Japone in Dupont circle. Either way, I was chilling in the the back where there was a bar, talking to this cute bartender. As she commented on my hair (it was a huge fuzzy muff of blonde at the time) I rested my man-bag on the bar chair. I took a thirty second walk to the front of the restaurant and when I came back my Ipod inside the bag was gone. I was upset because I had never had a device stolen from me in that way, but it wasn’t that bad. The third gen had a terrible battery life (mine capped at 8 hours) and it would “crash” on me occassionally. A little while later, I sold a bunch of stuff on Craigslist and then I bought my fourth gen (with clickwheel!) That wasn’t bad, but I only owned it for one week. I went on a business trip with a few classmates to checkout the Investment banking world. Seeing all those droopy eyed, highly paid college grads only a year or two older than me made me cringe. Investment banking wasn’t for me. I did read the paper however, I see that a new “Ipod Photo” was coming out in… a week.
I almost screamed, because I had bought my Ipod just recently, but as soon as I got back to DC I put it for sale on CL and bam! It was gone. So I bought my Ipod Photo soon after, and I must say I was the most pleased with this Ipod (even more than the Video). The Ipod photo felt very sturdy and it had an amazing battery life, it went up to 21 hours on a full charge. I used this Ipod for at least a year, then I heard about the Video. I researched it for a while, hating the fact that the battery life was now a paltry 16 hours and that you couldnt’ adjust the brightness on the screen. “No matter,” I said to myself “It is new tech. And New tech is F-ing cool.” So I bought the new Ipod with most of the Photo sale money and I was very dissapointed. The screen was marginally bigger and the menu was cool-ish, but the battery life for me was almost cut in half and I didn’t like watching video on it. The screen was too small to really enjoy full length video, and it was a task actually putting movies on the device itself. So after owning the Ipod video for about two months, I sold it.
Later I would horribly regret this, when I eventually wanted a portable music player and had none. Either way, as a birthday gift I received an Ipod Nano and I’ve been using that for over a year now. Naturally my head works in tens of gigabytes, and its a huge drop from 30 gigs on the Ipod Video (or 20 gigs on the Photo) to a measly 2 gigs on the Nano. But, I organized my playlist, made sure everything was okay, and I’ve been using it ever since. My happiest accessory is a pair of those Bose headphones they sell at the Apple store for 150 bucks. (I bought mine for $85. Ah…Craigslist). I had no desire to ever get an Ipod video again. I knew sooner or later, Apple would drop an Ipod that would wow the masses again. When the Iphone came out earlier this year, I didn’t bat an eyelid. Only a crazy person (I thought) would camp out to get a device with slow phone service, severe data limitations just because it looks “cool”. I fiddled with the phone at the Apple store, and I agree it IS cool, but not 600 bucks worth of cool.
But now I hear about the Ipod Touch, and my heart feels warm. I’m so used to my 2 gig nano that 8 gigs sounds like a lot of space. I like the fact that it has more functionality as well for my money. The $299 price tag doesnt’ sound that bad either BECAUSE it has so much. I can access wifi points and surf the web, I can browse my music by tapping my fingers, and the battery life isn’t 16 hours, its 22. Its also thinner than the Iphone (take that At&t!). So if I can, I think I’ll be heading to the Apple store to get my touch and be an early adopter of THAT product. Then I’ll hear about the “Ipod Touch II” which comes out in January which has 20 gigs of Space for $299 and then i’ll rush to sell my little 8 gig. But until that time comes, we’ll see what happens. This has nothing to do with my usual blogging about writing, but I needed to vent about something and the Ipod gave me a really good excuse.

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