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Lessons learned:

-don't recommend they switch taggers after a couple of games. Even though you want everyone to get a fair chance at using both guns, they need more practice on just one tagger to get familiar with it.
-when doing the initial training, have both taggers be the same type. Have everyone (but the example player) gather around you and explain how it works.
-don't forget to mention the rails (aiming notches) for the deluxe tagger are located on the side, not the top like the master blaster. Someone got all the way to the end of the session without knowing how to aim; he must have been pretty frustrated.
-find a good location and stick with it. It's toooooo big a park to be continually changing locations.
-realize that some people just aren't into lazertag and won't enjoy it as much as you. Don't feel it's a reflection on you. Although I did make some mistakes, there were extenuating circumstances that negatively affected the game that were out of your control; extra unannounced players, heat, players not into LT, etc.
-go back to Laurelhurst Park. I have had the best games so far there on the stairs.
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Taken from a comment on -->

Also, is our society approaching the decadence of ancient Rome? Is this a warning signal? No way to tell by this suspicion alone.

It's entertaining AND useful )
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Watched Resident Evil Extinction, and am sorely pissed that it turned out so crappy. The only thing that was worthwhile was the following thought; hope is essential. This was inspired by the part of the movie where the heroine has joined the rag-tag group of survivors and presented them with a journal stating there is an uninfected human settlement in Alaska. They are in Nevada, and the "plot" conflict is whether they should continue to scrape out their lives as they currently are or try to reach Alaska. Of course, they choose Alaska and, of course, they experience horrible screaming zombie death soon after they make that decision.

Regardless of the outcome of that decision or the overall disappointment in the movie, it made me realize the following:

You can't not have hope. You can't release it. You have no control. You may push it under, you may bury it, but you can't get rid of it. The fact that you are still alive and haven't died means you have hope. It is the essential motivator. If you feel you have no hope, you are going to go into a psychic coma until such a time that you again FEEL you have hope. You need to realize you ALWAYS have hope, regardless of the circumstances. Events change, the walls move, the room changes from four blank walls to ones with windows; life happens.

Hope is a drug. Use with caution.
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This might come in handy later in life as a teacher. Or a parent. Or a fast-food manager. Or a dog.

Being perfect doesn't make you loved.
Being good, being loving, gets you loved.
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When people say they believe in God, they really mean they believe in hope.

The two most common statements we hear from both camps (that really characterizes their differing sentiments nicely) are "Praise God" and "There is no God".

Substitute in the word "hope" for "God".

"Praise Hope" and "There is no hope".

I don't want to tie down my hope with useless baggage. I don't need the herd morality to keep me in check. I can still believe in hope and not believe in God.

When you tell me "God is your only hope of salvation. Without God, there is no hope", I raise one eyebrow and say I don't believe in false dichotomies.


Firefox is the new EMACS.


Walked 13 km today. I intend on wrapping it up with some mocha chocolate ice cream and some MST3K.


Things I dislike about the Sims 2:

-it's waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too easy to make friends and lovers.
-there's no random moodiness, angst, or sadness like in real life.
-my neighborhood just became corrupted. My Sims' thought bubbles contain black scribble marks. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.
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GREAT live acoustic song. Read the lyrics to get the whole effect.

Also, "After Tonight" is another great one.

Lyrics )
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Actually, scratch the walking around bit. I'll just get on the used stairstepper I bought.


I think I found a motivating metaphor that works for me. Life, or any activity thereof, is like a stretchy rubber exercise band, like the ones they use for physical rehab. If you just hold it limply, it doesn't do anything. It remains static and boring. You actually have to pull on it to get any benefit out of it. The more you pull on it, the greater the effect/benefit.

Likewise with any life activity; going out and socializing/mate seeking, exercise, etc. You have to put effort in and have confidence you are going to see some results. Blah; whatever. This could use some polishing, but I wanted to put it down in words.


My ex-girlfriend once told me that girls like to dress up when they feel shitty in order to feel better. Sounds useful and since I'm not in the habit of dressing up, I never would have thought of it. It does seem to have a mild effect on how I feel, but I haven't noticed it affecting how others treat me.


From "Odd Thomas" by Dean Koontz: "He once told me that the moodier a woman is, the hotter she will prove to be in bed. This was fatherly advice that I could have lived without."

This is...interesting.
...and in my case (if we postulate it holds for both sexes), true. OH DAYUM I WASN'T GONNA SAY IT BUT I SAID IT. :)
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Just got back from Hawaii. I'll write more later about Ford Island and all we did, but right now my back hurts so I can't sit down. I'm off to walk around for hours, then come back and do my rehab exercises again. Yay. :/ Hawaii itself sucked, although I loved getting back into the military routine and community again.
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I'm going to start thinking of world politics in terms of playground politics. The world map is a giant playground and each nation is a child. Same way of dealing with problems arise, and the same need to act like an adult is required.


Packing and printing for tomorrow. WHILE LISTENING TO DISCO OH YEAH.


I'm also going to try treating adults like children and children like adults.
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Idea for a science fiction story: implants or medical surgery in order to artificially overcome the limitations for empathy of our monkey brains. What would happen? Would we have to have a stimulus in our brains that activates every time we meet someone new? Would we only be able to recognize 150 groups of people and after that each new person is seen as a variation of the known type, not an individual? Would we have a wifi implant that drew up a person's file from a server so we could remember information about them? Basically, what would happen if we strove to overcome our hardwired empathy limit medically? Technologically? (EDIT: side note; organizationally?) What would our society look like?
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I heart this. Imagine listening to this when you are 8 or 9 years old. It's one of the shows that got me hooked on horror and thrillers. I never thought I'd hear it again.

Plus, it's Vincent Price!
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Every time you think "Screw them; it doesn't affect me", someone else with more money is thinking the same about you.
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"We human beings have a great need for one another. As described by the West African writer and teacher Malidoma Some, we have 'an instinct of community'. However, at the end of the twentieth century this instinct to be together is materializing as growing fragmentation and separation. We experience terrible ethnic wars, militia groups, special-interest clubs, and chat rooms. We are using the instinct of community to separate and protect us from one another, rather than creating a global culture of diverse, yet interwoven communities. We search for those most like us in order to protect ourselves from the rest of society. Clearly, we cannot get to a future worth inhabiting through these separating paths. Our great task is to rethink our understanding of community so that we can move from the closed protectionism of the current forms to openness and an embracing of the planetary community."

This succinctly states all I've been trying to get out. I feel so inadequate. In one paragraph...*shakes head*

The assembly line is a perfect example of what modern society does to us. Instead of thinking, acting human beings, we become cogs in a machine, numb and seeking further numbness. When our god is efficiency, we cease to matter. We are no longer the focus, efficiency is.

I think I'll go down the south waterfront this evening and see how that artificial community functions in the evening. It's effectively a gated community set right outside of downtown intended to replicate suburban living for richies who want to live downtown.

I don't think I'm smart enough to solve this problem...
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This brings out my inner geek like the full moon brings out the werewolf. You could do so many things with this besides could remap the keys to MIDI tones and have an ergonomic could program with it and use voice command software to fill in the gaps...perhaps I could program without fear of RSI...


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December 2009

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