Sickening

September 12, 2018 1:41pm
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Last night I spent more time than I’d like to admit browsing the Florida Sex Offender Registry.

Normally I’m not one to watch this thing like a hawk anytime someone new moves into the neighborhood, but we’ve got a handful of people coming to the house for therapy for the kids so it seemed like a good idea.

Thankfully, everyone checked out on that front just fine.

That said, afterwards I felt inclined to follow-up on an old (former) friend of mine who a couple of years ago apparently got busted for being in possession of child porn, and also creating it. (???)

As far as I knew, he’d lost his mid-level job with the military and got sent to prison. I honestly hadn’t talked to the guy in over a decade, so it was more of a shock than anything else, and then last night I stumbled upon a court document in which I guess he’s arguing a bunch of legal details on how it was handled…

…and inside, it also contained the legal review of the original video that had been taken…

…and words just don’t even describe my reaction.

I don’t know if it’s because now I have kids of my own that it feels even more heinous than it did originally, but I can’t imagine someone taking that kind of advantage of a kid … in this case, from what I’ve been able to discern, his own teenage daughter.

Reading through the text, and how he coerced her into what they did, I guess all I can say is that it most certainly wasn’t the same person who I was friends with as a teenager myself … who I worked at scout camp with and went to concerts with. It’s been about 20 years since those times, so I suppose that people change, and sometimes those changes cement the reminders why they’re not a part of your life anymore.

There was the friend who I knew since grade school that I had to block on Facebook because he had grown into a severe religious homophobe.

There was the uncle who had always been fun growing up, but in his later years wanted to argue about literally everything with a particularly conservative and often ugly set of views.

One thing that surprised me when I was browsing the registry was not only just how many offenders lived within a 5-mile radius of my cozy, little suburban neighborhood, but how many had gotten in trouble for offenses relating to kids. Some got busted for attempting to do something horrible with a minor and others for actually doing it.

Hell, last fall our kids’ pediatrician got busted in a prostitution sting here in a neighboring county!

I guess the point is, regardless of a history that you have with someone, you have to remain vigilant to those closest to you. I don’t think anyone ever expects something like that to happen. All you can really do is shake your head and think, “Thank god we didn’t keep in better touch.” 

It’s a little sad because I’ll never forget seeing Aerosmith with him from the second row as Steven Tyler twirled his mike stand over our seventeen year old heads. Or all of our shenanigans in scouts together. In fact, he was the one sitting in the passenger seat when I wrecked my sports car the same summer that I bought it.

But we were different then.

ffatb1

I stumbled across this game late last night thinking it might be kind of cool, but it turns out … it’s not.

The idea is simple enough – it’s just the heroes and monsters from the Final Fantasy series fighting and the more you play, the more characters you can unlock to put in your party. Except that you’re not really fighting in the sense that you’ve grown to expect from the various games in the series. To “fight,” you simply swipe the character and he does his attack action, then gets back in line to wait his turn again.

ffatb2

That’s all that everybody does, so it’s literally the equivalent of holding down the A button until the battle is over and XP is awarded.

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The whole game is basically just a ploy to get you to buy DLC, except that even that is random and in the two $0.99 purchases that I made, I got two random characters from games that I’ve never played. Awesome.

I get that the game can’t be a little more complicated without being a lot more complicated – I would’ve loved to see a setup where I could build a party from FFIV and FFVI characters and then pit them against the four elemental fiends from the first game – that would be cool, and I think if the game auto-leveled them appropriately on the spot you could still get a balanced fight out of all of the characters.

But I want to control their actual actions, too. In this game, every character is one hit and they’re out, which is fine for a throwaway game but the Final Fantasy series is loaded with rich characters and diverse abilities – to whittle these guys down to a single move that defines what they do is insulting to the series that created them.

This could’ve been a neat game with a whole lot of nostalgia factor, but instead it’s just blatant cash grab for in-app purchases where the creative process both begins and ends at the Premium Character Shop. 🙁

ffatb4

Whatever happened to justlaugh.net???

January 29, 2014 7:38pm
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Found myself randomly telling this story on Twitter just now and then realized that it probably would’ve been better off as a blog post instead!  😕

Speaking of Just Laugh memories, somewhere I should also still have the clips of when Just Laugh was featured on TechTV after we nominated Martin Sargent for a Weenie Award! That was awesome … one of these days I’ll have to find that thing and figure out a way to convert it into a format a little more suitable for this decade…

Chick-Fil-A vs. The T-Shirt Guy

March 26, 2012 12:52pm
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This is disappointing because Chick-Fil-A makes absolutely delicious chicken. Still, I hope that the guy wins because I hate overzealous trademark lawsuits and it should be pretty obvious even to a lawyer in a $5,000 suit that there’s no chance for “brand confusion” between Eat Mor Chikin and Eat More Kale whatsoever.

Come on, Chick-Fil-A – don’t turn us off to your amazing food by being a legal bully just because you can afford a really good lawyer with $4 billion in sales… 🙁

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