I don't even know what buttons I pushed to get here.
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So, I’ll tell you what. I’ve had this argument so many times over the past decade because it’s something that hits uncomfortably close to home, both for me individually as well as for so many people I know. So I’m just gonna make my statement and leave the conversation, because in all honesty, I'm not going to let myself have an aneurysm over this.
The problems that affect the poor today are the same problems that affected the poor yesterday. Unaffordable housing, unaffordable health care, unaffordable childcare, sub par educational opportunities, subpar job opportunities, subpar legal representation, tenants rights, labor rights, and on and on and on. To say that the poor are “better off” because now they can afford a single time purchase of an X-Box here or an I-Phone there is to go beyond trivializing the challenge they face due to poverty. It’s a a bait and switch.
You bring up air conditioning. That’s awesome. What about other living conditions such as privacy, clean water, working plumbing and electricity, fair rent rates, safe neighborhoods, and on and on and on? Just because cheaper air conditioning is available, that doesn’t mean good, affordable housing is available. You bring up penicillin and ambulatory services? Awesome. Penicillin is just one small part of the picture when it comes to healthcare. What about pre-natal and post-natal care? What about diseases like mental health, diabetes, etc.? What good is an ambulance when health insurance is beyond affordable for so many people, even with shit laws like Obamacare, and a single visit to the doctor’s office is unaffordable and an emergency room visit or a necessary surgery is all that’s needed to throw a family into crippling debt?
You can’t say “Oh, people have more options available now so obviously things are better” if so many of those options for people are still out of reach. You can’t say “Oh, these cherry picked items are affordable now” when said cherry picked items have very little to do with the big picture.
The argument framed as it is, is bullshit. Plain and simple. To even pretend otherwise is so disingenuous it really brings into question the credibility of people who want to use it.
Retail aside, the physical structure of malls would seem to make them an ideal place for some kind of hub. Maybe they could be host to mom and pop shops, small lawyer and business consulting offices, maybe government organizations like military recruitment or family services, etc. They have the potential to become something new, but what that would look like exactly, I don't really know.
To piggyback off of this, snoodog, and cgod all at the same time, a lot of people are gonna get hurt by the short sighted actions and desires of board members, share holders, etc. What makes it all that worse is that SEARS isn't even close to being the only company having these problems, and the people that get hit the hardest by store and distribution center closings tend to be the ones who also have the least resources to bounce back.
Yeah. There's a ton of similarities between Westerns, Samurai Films, Kung Fu Films, Superhero Comics, Folk Tales, etc. I think that's a huge reason why I find them all so easily enjoyable. They're all familiar even when they're fresh and unique. Of course, they still need to be well done. ::cough::iron::cough::fist::cough::
In all honesty, I like plug and play games. Modding and/or having to fiddle with a system to get a game to play aren't much fun. Plus, Dala has like three laptops. I'm sure she can spare one. :)
As for Jagged Alliance, especially the first one, just keep in mind you're playing a game that's over 20 years old. There are some dated aspects, especially in the UI, but its bones are solid as hell.
Shadowwatch is fun as hell too.
Hmm. I kind of see it. Though for a frontier environment, space in Cowboy Bebop feels both surprisingly well developed and well populated (though definitely not very safe). While people are running around gunning eachother, it doesn't feel "lawless."
Theme-wise, I don't see a lot of individually meted justice, establishing/protecting home fronts, etc. That said, there does seem to be very much a disregard for the value of life, a virtue of greed interwoven into the culture, and while it might be arguable to call them "heroes," there are very clear protagonists and antagonists.
I can't say anything about the X-COM board game directly, but FFG makes solid games in general, so it'll probably be very good. Much like Master of Orion II, I've wasted countless hours on X-COM and Terror From The Deep when I was younger. The modern X-Box versions suck in comparison, but I'm half tempted to steal one of my wife's Windows Boxes so I can download and replay the X-COM series again. I'm pretty certain they're on Good Old Games right now, alongside Jagged Alliance, which is another great squad tactics game.
Take all of this with a grain of salt and understand that in a lot of these things, I'm an idiot. But here are some thoughts . . .
For your classes, maybe start going to them. It seems like a lot now, since your so far behind, but the more you wait the harder it will be to get caught up and the more scared you'll be of going, creating a horrible positive feedback loop that gets more and more difficult to break.
For your projects, do them to the best of your ability, finish them. Then go to your professors with them in hand, acknowledge the mistakes you made and the lateness of the assignments, and see if they'll give you some partial credit, or at the very least, some advice to getting caught back up in class.
For self harm, see some help if you can. I don't know about Russia, but in America almost every college has counselors, priests, etc. that are there to help students with the non-academic tests life brings us.
You are smart. You are strong. You want good things in your life. Embrace yourself and you'll find the strength to see things through.
Friends and Family
Called a famity member this week. We don't talk much, almost never, and I'm trying to fix that. The conversation went well, but was frustratingly short. I think I'm gonna resort to just calling them out of the blue when I feel like it. My friend who asked my wife and I two weekends ago to go to cars and coffee with her and a guy she likes is doing amazingly well with said guy. They've gone on a few dates since then and I get the impression that she's more than halfway smitten with him. It's awesome to see. I had lunch with one of my coworkers this week, who is one of those kinds of guys that's much easier to get along with outside the realm of work. He's an awesome guy and for about an hour he talked to me about the workings of the various warplanes and the politics behind them, video games, his family, etc. Lastly, I'm thinking about calling up a bud and see if we can't plan a way to see some of the regional museums around here. He doesn't get a lot of free time these days, so when we do hang out, I think I owe it to him to make it something kind of big.
I know who George Burns and Gracie Allen are. They were once very big deals in the comedy industry and George Burns himself worked well into old age, though the only thing I've ever seen of his was "Oh, God!" Antenna TV has recently started showing episodes of "The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show" and I have got to say, it's a hell of a show. The situations are absurd yet believable, George and Gracie are razor sharp in both their wit and timing, neither one of them is afraid to be the butt end of a joke of it'll get a good laugh. It's hard to put into words just how good this show is. If anyone on here ever gets the chance to check out a few episodes, I highly recommend it.
Know what I love so much about Hubski? It has so many amazing, honest to God, creative people. So many people in fact, that I'm afraid of doing any shoutouts for fear of forgetting people and making anyone feel left out. I was up late last night, browsing Wikipedia when that thought crept into my mind, and it made me sincerely happy. Keep sharing what you make guys. :)