Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Dalek That Time Forgot

 I know I've complained about the New Paradigm Daleks extensively, some might say incessantly, but this fan-made animation cannot be ignored:

Look at that. That is professional work. And there's even a second part!

See that? Those were old Daleks, as in from the 60's. You can't get more retro then that. As soon as I find out about a part three I'm putting it on here. This is a great series and I'm actually really excited to see how it ends. I've often told Idontknow and Ramzca that if they ever made a show just about the Daleks I would watch it endlessly. Well it seems my wish has finally come true! That never happens!

Those voices are spot on, I could listen to those all day. Everyday.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Life! Death! PRIZES! (Part Two)

The dream-quest didn't stop when I gave birth to millions of tiny worms, far from it. The next night I was in a very different kind of city, one that I was much more used to. In most of my dreams I'm in a desert, or a small Midwestern town, or a combination of the two. I don't know why, but somehow I'm always stuck in the middle of psychedelic deserts. Last night was no different.

This town looks like the archtypical western hamlet; there's saloons in every direction and tumbleweeds go where they please with impunity. Every road is dirt and littered with artifacts from a carnival fair. Everywhere I go I step on bags of kettle corn and discarded corn dog sticks. Everywhere I look are groups of people having tailgate parties in the back of their trucks. The sound of laughter fills the air and there's no escaping the smell of cooking ribs. Again, everything seems so safe and tranquil.

But lo and behold: in the distance is a crowd of people running from something. That's when I see it: an enormous rodent-like creature, one could even say a rodent of unusual size. It's almost entirely bald with pale flabby skin covering it's bony, hunched over body. The only hair is along it's spine; a matted, shaggy coat of striped yellow hair that runs the entire length of it's body, down to it's scaly rat-like tail. It's head is huge in relation to the rest of it's body and full of jagged, crooked teeth.

I instinctively know that it's an extremely dangerous relative of the aardvark and native to Australia. Soon, more people see it and start to panic. The creature starts howling and snarling in the middle of the street as others flee. It stretches out it's legs and with a sickening crunching they dislocate from their joints. The creature is obviously in pain as it grows an extra pair of legs for a total of six, all ending in gnarly looking claws. It stands upright, having grown from merely unusual size to truly massive proportions. Then, like a bull it charges and catches a man in it's jaws, snapping him in one shake of it's huge bald head. I run for cover, diving into a nearby car. I find the driver inside, as we watch the beast we both agree that it must die.

Eventually any potential prey is either dead or has escaped. The creature calms down, returning to it's original shape and we study it's habits from the safety of the car. Eventually we just decide to get out of the car and sneak up on it. It notices us and starts to chase us all over town. I weave in between the buildings, the snarling of gnashing of teeth never far behind. I can feel it's hot breath on my neck as I dive past barbecue pits and popcorn machines in the waning light of the evening. Eventually, I find a pile of rocks and start throwing them at the creature.

One by one each rock pelts it on it's huge crocodilian head. Blood flows out of it's mouth, taking broken teeth with it. The creatures frantic running turns to a lumbering crawl as the rocks I throw slowly break open it's skull. Eventually it simply falls over, drowning in it's own blood on top of a pile of hot coals.

But I'm not fooled, I know it'll wake up soon. So I wander away from the creature's battered body and into the seemingly endless depths of the desert-city. The smell of roasting meat returns, so do the people. The party starts up again as children play on the lawns between the wooden buildings. The sky is filled with exploding fireworks and everywhere I look are the warm glows of burning campfires. It's like the entire city is celebrating the Fourth of July all year 'round. Since this is a dream I don't walk so much as float past the all-night funnel cake stands and into an arcade still under construction. Workers are still wheeling in game cabinets as I start dumping quarters in. Sadly, Polybius is nowhere to be found. But I do find a photo-realistic rail-shooter where the player is George Washington as the sheriff of a Western town and must shoot a legion of bandits. After a ride in a mine cart the game comes to the ending scene where the player realizes the woman that's been their sidekick was betraying them the whole time. I remember choosing to shoot her.

The game ends and I look around the empty arcade. Everyone's seemed to have left, not just the arcade, but the entire city seems deserted. But then I realize that I'm not actually alone; in the corner of the arcade is a dark figure, totally shrouded in an all-concealing darkness. It's as if light isn't just absorbed by them, but light ceases to exist around them altogether, leaving nothing but a pitch-black haze around the silhouette of someone in a wide brimmed hat and trench coat. I'm convinced we're friends and they seem to think the same.

Suddenly I wake up, staring at my hand. Then I realize that I didn't get to keep the bright orange revolver from the game and I'm more than a little disappointed.

Life! Death! PRIZES! (Part One)

Recently I've been working at a construction site up in the mountains. No really, actual work. The kind that my puny arms are unaccustomed to. I've helped lay down pipes for a septic system and shoveled gravel well into 8 PM, only to return home tired and sore. I can't complain though, it's fulfilling work and it's good to know that if I exert myself I actually can do physical things like lifting and carrying heavy things with reasonable competence. Plus, it's effect on my sleep schedule is..interesting. For the first time in a long time I've actually gone to bed at a normal time and have woken up prompted by an outside influence. Essentially, my personal bubble hasn't been popped, but has mutated to accommodate this strange new world I've come to inhabit. Now, my dreams are starting to reflect this...

It all started three days ago when I started working. For the first time in a long time I felt legitimately tired when going to bed. My body ached and the constant stream of white-noise in my brain seemed to have all but vanished for the first time. I was well and truly exhausted. The stage was set for a hideous change, one that would set the cornerstone for the coming dream-quest...

I was in a bowling convention in Southern France. The Sun is shining high in the bright midday sky; a deep, vibrant blue, as clear and dazzling as the Mediterranean Sea which greeted us in long rolling crests on the nearby rocks. The mood is one of quiet dignity. The smell of freshly cut grass mingles with the cool mist from the ocean, all under the warm glow of the Sun. Nearby is a table with a spread of tiny sandwiches on tooth picks. I'm wearing a white suit and panama hat as a stole across the lawn. Next to me is an old friend, we laugh and joke about the past when he asks me to come live at his vineyard in Nice. I decline, telling him that I will never leave my beloved home of Algeria.

The park was surrounded by an idyllic city; a synthesis of ancient white-washed mansions and ultra-modern geometric constructions in glass and steel. As if someone turned the Louvre into an entire city. It was all so tranquil, dignified.

Suddenly my vision turns black and the entire convention disappears. In the distance is a bright white light. The rumble of a large engine fills my ears as I realize I'm in a long concrete tunnel, quickly reaching the end. I'm blinded by the light as I leave. That's when I realize it: I've hijacked an armored humvee and was quickly barreling towards a large group of people in a crowded downtown park. I man the machine gun on top, never stopping to question who, or what, is actually controlling the rolling death-wagon.

Without hesitation, I open fire. The air explodes with the sound of gunfire as the crowd flees in terror. They drop like flies as the humvee smashes park benches and crushes tiny dogs under it's enormous tires. Not once do I question this sudden rampage, I'm too busy reveling in the unadulterated destruction.

But just as suddenly as the killing spree began, a swarm of police cars start to chase us. The humvee flees the city and makes a mad dash to the desert. I can't control the war machine, I can only fire at the pursuing police cars, watching them as they're engulfed in tremendous fireballs as we flee. The city gives way to a tidal wave of blood, which gives way to the desert.

The humvee dissipates, leaving me to run for safety in the mountains among the dunes and shifting sands. The once bright sun rolls lazily along the horizon, now a deep blood-red, like a sore bruise. In the distance I see a shack built into the side of the mountain, with naught but a rickety wooden staircase leading up to it. The police are in hot pursuit and I feel by blood begin to boil. My eyes feel like they're about to explode as I leap across the sand and up the steps of splintered sundry steps.

I tear open the screen door of the shack and scramble inside. It's a tiny dilapidated office. Without thinking I scramble on top of a filing cabinet. Foaming at the mouth and convulsing, I sit there for what feels like hours. Suddenly, a police man barges in. He takes one look at me and his face contorts into a look of disgust and shame. He shakes his head and simply walks out, gun still primed to fire. That's when I realize it: I've turned into a giant worm creature.

Using my hideous lamprey-like mouth, I bite him in half and start thrashing around the room. I crush everything with my long slimy body in a mindless, animalistic display. That's when it get's weird.

During my hissy-fit a bunch of meddling kids wander by. I hear them talking outside about how they're going to take me to their older brother. I'm infuriated by this. I don't know how, but soon enough they are all dead. Exterminated. I don't question it, because obviously I now have unlimited worm-creature powers. Of course with great power comes great responsibility: that's when I realize that I'm quickly giving birth to an endless stream of squirming worm-spawn.

"This is disgusting." I think to myself as I look down at my ever-growing pile of worm children, "I'm not even a lady!"

The dream ends as I start having a freakout at the prospect of becoming a mother. When I wake up I sincerely believe my bed is full of worms.

Tune in tomorrow for the next installment in Dream-Quest 2: Electric Bungaloo...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


If there's one thing I hate, it's change. Especially unnecessary changes that don't improve anything. I've suffered the lion's share of pointless changes in my life, from the merger of TechTV and G4 to updated channel designs on Youtube and here on Blogger. Because of this, I have actively tried to eradicate change from my life until nothing remains but my own singular consciousness, totally immune to any outside influence. I've told Idontknow about my plans but unfortunately he doesn't see the appeal in becoming an invulnerable energy-being. Oh well, I think we all know who'll have the last laugh when I survive the Universal Heat Death.

Sadly, my efforts to exterminate progress have met less than successful results. G4 is still an awful spout of miasma and Youtube is becoming more and more sterile and impersonal with every passing day, saying nothing of the unfathomable stupidity of it's commentators. Plus, as far as I can tell the outside world is still a thing that exists so that's terrible too.

I've had a few minor successes in creating my own personal bubble though. As I said, Blogger's been updating their editor. The comments on my blog have been acting, for lack of a better word, wonkey and everything felt slower.

Naturally, this will not do.

To make a long heartache short, I spent the last hour and a half fiddling with different settings to get everything ship-shape again, even considering using a new template for better compatibility. This would have the effect of making the blog look slightly different. Naturally, this would not do. So I did what had to be done, I sifted through some of my oldest folders and found a dusty old XML file, the oldest surviving template I had. With only minor tinkering it worked and the editor survived apparently unscathed. Why did I do this? Because I hate changes in my life and I will not stop until every uncontrolled variable has been exterminated.

Oh, I just remembered, today is Valentine's Day. Well too bad! I hate love too!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Der Übermensch

Every so often I take the Myers-Briggs questionnaire for kicks, mainly to confirm my self-image. For those not in the know, the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is used to measure how people perceive the world and make decisions. Each personality type is measured with a four letter code, representing extroversion versus introversion, sensing versus intuition, feeling versus thinking and perceiving versus judging. It's a nifty test that doesn't take very long and can provide some interesting insight into the minds of your loved ones so it's easier to judge them.

Each time I take it I always get the same two personality types: ENTJ or INTJ, meaning Extroverted (or Introverted) Intuitive Thinking Judging. Generally speaking, this is bad news. ENTJ and INTJ are the two rarest personality types, only 1-4% of all people who take the test get that score. Both types are characterized by pragmatic logic driven by facts and a lust for greater efficiency. They're analytical and readily find faults in themselves and others. These personality types are simultaneously loners and efficient leaders.

Basically, all the makings of an evil genius.

As you can imagine, I was delighted when I learned this. Of course I'm a judgmental control freak. I wouldn't expect any less. All the greatest corrupt corporate executives and evil overlords are ENTJ and everything about INTJ is in line with Friedrich Nietzsche's concept of der Übermensch. The personality type is even called the Mastermind! Apparently I'm in good company. A lot of villains in literature, film and real life have the NTJ personality types. For example...

Scar from The Lion King
Ernst Stravo Blofeld (the one with the death ray satellite) from the James Bond movies
Satan from Paradise Lost
Mr. Burns
Ayn Rand
Margaret Thatcher
Megatron from Transformers
Richard Nixon
Benjamin Linus from Lost
Gordon Gekko, Micheal Douglas's character from Wall Street
Carl Showalter, Steve Buscemi's character from Fargo
Sauron, as in the giant burning eyeball from Lord of the Rings
Tony Montana from Scarface
Andrew Ryan from Bioshock

...and of course, Charles Foster Kane.

So yeah, sorry Mom, but you've basically raised a super villain. I'll be sure to tell you when I melt the ice caps or something.

But I know what you're thinking, how does this relate to ponies?

By the way, my sister wanted me to tell you she's Rarity (ENFJ). Be sure to post your results in the comments!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Understated Beauty of Insomnia

I've been meaning to put this here for a while now, a very lovely video by DaimyoK that deserved more attention.

The video's description:

I fell into the pit, in which the tiles did before I. The darkness was painful, but did not last for long as I began to hallucinate. Not pleasant, such as what you'd expect from facing death. These were tormenting visions, visions showing all that has happened in my time here, visions of what lay beyond my nightmares and dreams, visions of my death and destiny.

Visions of the Paranoia.

Also, we have this offering from newschool92 which manages to make the map look prettier than it actually is...

You may not know it, but I'm always checking for new videos of the maps and I love finding these kinds of videos. I think it should be a regular feature here to show off these kinds of videos.