rust and dust


Well, look: I’ve gotta start shaking the rust off now that we’re approaching year-end season. I’ve got Top 10 Lists to write! (That reminds me, I’ve gotta try to fill in the gaps in my spreadsheets!)

In any event, here I am. And there you are. And so let’s begin.

Maybe I’m just a curmudgeon, or maybe I’m just trying to be realistic about money and time, but there’s not a hell of a lot that’s jumping out at me in terms of big releases before Christmas. Borderlands 3 had been one of the games I’d been looking forward to, but I rented it and found it stale. (Of course, I checked out right at the moment that most of the reviews say that it starts to pick up (i.e., once you leave the first planet), but that’s a lot to ask.)

Basically, this Friday’s release of Outer Worlds is it, as far as my gaming energies will be concerned. I’m apathetic towards Call of Duty, I’m actively avoiding Death Stranding, and I’m a bit wary of Shenmue III. But Outer Worlds looks like it’s gonna scratch my itch for a deep sci-fi RPG. (Early reviews are calling it Fallout in space, and that’s pretty much all I needed to hear.)

There are certainly some indie games that I’m sure I’ll be excited to try, though for whatever reason indie games tend to not show up in release-date lists. Cases in point: I recently rented both Indivisible and Trine 4, and they are both excellent, and I will most likely buy them when they inevitably go on sale.

Oh, and I’m finally playing Return of the Obra Dinn. That is a hell of a game! I have no idea what I’m doing – the gameplay loop is somewhat obtuse – but I’m thoroughly enjoying the experience. As far as the time manipulation / murder mystery / catastrophe at sea / radically minimal graphic design genre is concerned, it’s aces.

I’m also having this weird dilemma common to multi-platform users where I’m torn between what system to play on. I tried the remaster of Planescape: Torment on Xbox last week, and found it quite enticing. (Plus: Achievements! Yes, I still give a shit about them!) And then I considered getting the game on Switch, because portability. And then I remembered that I already own the game on iOS, and if portability is truly an issue then I can play it on my phone if my iPad is too much to deal with.

So I’m an idiot, in other words. But you knew that already.

As far as reading goes, Goodreads says I’m at 78 books out of 80 (I decided to revise my goal a few months back, since I’d easily sped past my original goal). Not everything I’ve read lately has been all that great, but considering how strong the year has been overall, I suppose it’s OK to hit something of a lull. To put it another way, my Year In Reading post will be a lot more detailed than anything else I might put up.

I think that’s all I’ve got for the day. I know it’s not much, but it’s something. And since I’ve been dealing with some unusually wild depression issues of late, I’ll take whatever I can get.

A view from the sidelines

First thing’s first: I bought one of those new iPads, and a keyboard to go with it, so now I can use my personal email again during daylight hours without having to type with my thumbs, which is a thing that I hate. I can also write here, too, without too much concern over my job monitoring my internet usage. I can even sorta get back into social media, which I have mixed feelings about.

Does that mean that I’ll write here more often? Who knows?

I’ve been in a rough way for the last month or so, and as I tend to do during these periods, I’ve been turning inward. There’s been some personal things going on, and while they’re mostly resolved at this point, I’m still trying to get a grip on things. I’m also still adjusting to some slight changes in my medication; mostly I’m just feeling exhausted, and while some of that is the medication, some of it is just being a parent, and quite a lot of it is the news.

Have you watched the news lately?

Re: the news – look, I try REALLY hard to keep my social media feeds as non-political as I can. If you’re reading this and disagree, then at the very least you should know that I still bottle up at least 95% of my news-related thoughts, so the stuff that does make it out is because if I don’t write something my head will explode. I really do try to be sensitive about this stuff. My various social media feeds are almost entirely political, because it would appear that I’m not the only one losing my mind.

Look: I know I’ve said this before but it bears repeating that we are in a super-strange period of time right now, and it’s only going to get more and more fucked up between now and next November – and that’s assuming that we as a country (and, indeed, as a planet) actually make it to next November without completely falling apart.

[And since we’re on the topic, here’s my take on it. 45 is going to continue to act deranged and psychotic because nobody that he listens to (i.e., (Fox News, Mitch McConnell, his cabinet, Rudy, etc.) is going to tell him to shut up. He’s no longer committing crimes behind closed doors; he’s openly asking China to help him get dirt on the Biden family from the White House lawn. And he’s going to continue to act recklessly because as long as he’s President, he can’t be indicted or arrested or anything. So let’s get real here: there will not be a peaceful transition of power if he loses next November. (This, of course, assumes that next November’s elections will be on the up-and-up, which is a dangerous assumption to make.) It’s going to get much worse before it gets better, if it ever does get better.]

Now, more than ever, it is imperative on us to be kind to each other. I know I have some friendships that have been in a weird sort of limbo for a while now, because I’ve been so inward-facing for so long that I’ve kinda forgotten how to reach out. (And, also, there’s been a lot of self-directed depression-inducing issues that make me feel like I shouldn’t reach out, that me reaching out would do more harm than good.) I’m working through that stuff, and I have no right to ask you to be patient with me. I mean, we’re all going through some stuff, I get it.

Anyway. I’m alive and I love you and I’m trying to get better.

Media consumption continues, as per usual. Still reading like crazy, still having trouble staying invested in the games I’m trying to play. Fully caught up on The Good Place, which I should’ve been watching already. I feel less and less motivated to write about this stuff, though, because… who cares? I’m not sure I still care. I have this blog because I’ve had a blog in some form for almost 20 years, and not having a blog makes me feel like I’m missing an arm or something. But I’m having trouble feeling like it’s as necessary as it used to.

I’ll try, though, if for no other reason that the need to justify the iPad purchase.

Thanks for your patience.

%d bloggers like this: