Comment Carnival | Meanwhile, 20 children in Africa die of thirst.

I've been trying to get back on a better posting schedule, a post every couple of days, but I've had a nonstop headache this week, which is bullshit, and it's been making me want to avoid backlit screens.

But now I'm introducing a new feature on my blog where I parade surprising, stupid, insightful or funny comments.

Featured comments

Yea, it's a shame to waste all of that sugar and high fructose corn syrup. It had a lot of nutritional value to offer someone.

I'm sure all the starving Somalians will have enjoyed this video.

Who cares? If they wanted water so bad, they'd learn how to fend for themselves and make a better life for themselves like we in America have done. Not our fault they haven't advanced themselves like we have.

In other parts of the world kids are dying 'cause they have nothing to drink and you are wasting it...

100 African children just cried themselves to sleep.

For those of you who don't like this video or feel that its a waste, indulge me. Notice that this video was featured on tosh.0, a show with numerous sponsors and companies buying ad revenue. The more popular this video becomes, the more popular tosh.0 becomes and consequently, the more revenue generated by companies sponsoring the tosh.0 show.  If these companies generate enough revenue, they will then be able to expand their workforce. Therefore, this vomiting cup saved or created 217 jobs.

All right motherfuckers. Get your pale, healthy asses down in your ergonomic computer chairs and shut the fuck up for a second here.

Yes, there are starving children in Africa. There are starving children on every fucking continent, with the probable exception of Antarctica. There are starving children in your own goddamn city, but they're too close for you to comfortably use in an attack on someone's Youtube video, aren't they? Because the obvious retort is "Go feed the fuckers," isn't it?

It's just too easy to look at someone wasting a litre of fountain pop and scream about the poor, starving children that are thousands of miles away, since you personally are not morally obligated to do anything to help them because of that huge physical distance.

You do know the main reason there are starving children all over the world, don't you? It's politics, not resources. It's politics, not money. It's politics, not some kid pouring pop down the drain. Politics is the reason that thousands of pounds of vital supplies and food sit, unused, in an African port somewhere until it's all stolen or rotting. You really have no right to sit on your personal computer, with Internet you've paid for, complaining in the comment section of a video that someone else is wasting water. Get off your high fucking horse, sell your fucking computer and go dig some goddamn wells before trying to pull that shit.

If you want to scream about wasting water, I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you aren't a hypocrite.

So how does it feel to share the bathwater of your entire family, hmm? Does your bathroom reek of urine since you don't flush as often to conserve water? I hope you never let your milk expire and are always able to finish your drinks when you go to a restaurant. I'm guessing that your lawn is sad and brown during the high summer, because it would be such a waste to use potable water on mere lawn plants.

Water isn't scarce in most of the western world. We have huge amounts of the stuff falling from the sky, rivers swollen with snow melt and natural springs. That's just geographic luck. All of that water that is "wasted" is, in fact, treated, cleaned and released back to nature to reenter the water cycle and eventually return to be used again, and again and again. It's kind of how the ecosystem works.

We can't just fill up shipping containers with water and fly them into Africa, you know.

Look, I know why you're doing this.

You're just cranky and you couldn't think of anything else to criticize (there weren't any girls in this video for you to call ugly) so you fell to the absolute lowest common denominators: "STARVING CHILDREN" and "GET A LIFE."

You probably don't even know what it means to BE a starving child. You're just upset that someone's having fun with their life and you aren't. If you want a taste of your own medicine try this:

- Don't enjoy sex because there are women in the world who aren't give then option of consenting
- Don't eat more than the bare minimum of vegetables because there are children in the world who subsist only on rice and are slowly dying of nutritional deficiencies.
- Don't do bad in school or complain about homework because there are people in the world who will never have an education
- Don't get bored when sitting in church because there are people in the world who will be killed for practicing your religion

There are always people who are worse off than you. Their existence doesn't control your life, so don't try to use the same excuse to control others' lives.


BATTLEPANTIES (and gurl gamers)

Hi. :)
I have a vagina, and I play video games.

I'm not into Mario, Pacman or Tetris; I didn't grow up kicking my brother's ass at Street Fighter. Shit, it's only been the last few years that video games interested me at all. It started with City of Heroes and Oblivion, and then TF2 was my babby's first FPS. (In the glory days, mind you, before the hat fiasco. "Hatageddon," as T insists it be called.) And really, it's not that FPS-y.

In recent years I've played the shit out of Killing Floor, Borderlands, L4D2 and, recently, APB [Reloaded]. I've sampled several MMOs, including Rift and Warhammer online. I've wasted away many hours in other games that mostly turned out to be shit but were fun for a drunken LAN.

Girls play non-casual video games too.

It's frustrating that people treat girls differently in video games. There's plenty of girls out there who will take advantage of that - loudly proclaiming to be gamer girls, presumably in the hopes of being raised upon a pedestal and fawned over by thousands of desperate male gamers. You see this most often at comic cons - hundreds of girls wearing little more than bodypaint and tape. And what's with the "sexifying" of characters? Aren't there enough scantily-clad female characters you can dress up as without having to be a "sexy" pikachu or a "sexy" stormtrooper?

TBH, I just want to play the damn games. I want to be able to use voice chat and not cause a wave of snap judgments to be made about me because I have a female voice. I don't want to be whispered with "Ur char is sexxxxy ;)." I don't want to be given free gold and special treatment. Some games don't even give me the option of playing as a female (I'm lookin' at you, TF2 and Killing Floor), which is - frankly - insulting. It's as if females aren't even considered. And, no, I don't like to pose naked while covered in console controllers.

I notice the odd treatment quite a lot more in APB than in any other game I've played; probably because the City of Heroes community was, comparatively, quite mature and I otherwise don't tend to play games with online communities. There have been several times in APB where someone in district (global) chat would say, "It's not like any real girls play this game. All the female chars are just dudes." I would say something at this point, but really... what's the point? No one would believe me, and if they did I would just get spammed with bullshit.

But most earnestly, I don't want to be forced to wear battlepanties.

Costume sets/intro art for Sacred 2

This is terrible for my immersion, and fantasy is the worst culprit. Do you honestly think a tank is going to run into the fray wearing nothing but a thong and a chestplate that is little more than a golden bowl strapped to each tit? Don't those mages get cold wearing only silken wrappings? And I've worn leather before. Those rogues would be nothing but a bundle of creaking and tinkling buckles.

There's a strange disconnect between female and male fantasy armour sets. The men turn out like they're literal tanks, piled high with ridiculous greeble, while there seems to be some sort of law that women much have bare thighs and bare tummies.

And, oh boy, the games that have enough body customization to include a "breast size" slider? Bahahaha. APB is one of them; most of the female criminals and enforcers are rocking around in bikinis, thongs, thigh-highs and EEE breasts. It's extremely impractical, what with all the bullets, grenades, dirty alleys, ladders, car explosions and other related chaos that you encounter in a typical San Paro day. I recognize that a community made almost entirely of seventeen year old boys is going to be full of naked women, but the company itself hasn't done much to encourage other behaviours. They offer six different styles of bra, and only one type of t-shirt. It's pretty clear what their opinion of the whole thing is.

In summary, Down with fan service, Up with immersion

All you guys may say it's fair and all in good fun, but you're not the ones having to prance around in nothing but a girdle of fortitude and stockings of strength.

What's in your bag!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

There comes a time in every girls life where she talks about what's in her purse.

To the Internet.
  1. Hair bow These bows are the best. I can get all my hairs in them like a ponytail, or just use it to get hair off my face. Usually I end up with five of them in my purse, as I like to let my hair down at night once it cools off and I just toss whatever bow I was wearing into my purse.

  2. Sunglasses Of course, only in the summer. People who wear sunglasses in a city during the winter are douchebags. I have a second pair that I sometimes wear when I don't mind standing out...

    But, I try to avoid wearing sunglasses as much as possible. When I was a kid I was very self-conscious about my big nose. I don't know if it was actually big or if I just perceived it that way (It's possible I "grew into it" by now) but I still feel self-conscious about that part of my face.

    Which is ridiculous, I know, but there ain't much I can do about it.

  3. Kleenex I think I should start carrying around a little umbrella. You know how when you have an umbrella with you, it never rains? It's like that for me and kleenex. The moment I take the pack of kleenex out fo my purse, I start getting colds and allergies and bullshit. I don't fucking know. So, I keep kleenex in my purse even though I almost never have to use it.

    And yes, I call it motherfuckin' kleenex. None of this "tissue" bullshit; I'm not french

    That makes sense because my step-father's french family used to insist on calling them "tissues," but they also called napkins "serviettes" which is weird as hell. They'd ask me to "pass a serviette" and I'd be like, "The fuck do you want? SPOON? TEACUP? What is this serviette voodoo!? ... fucking... what, do you want this? what are you pointing at? That napkin? What the hell, bitch."

    The worst part is, they used to same word for paper towels, too.

  4. Pencil and Eraser You know that old joke about the eraser on the pencil being only a fraction of the amount of lead graphite?

    Oh, and be careful using the expression "a fraction of..." around annoyingly smart people. Because, in all technicality, 1/1 is a fraction, as is 2/1 and the usual 1/2, etc. Everything is a fraction.

    Well, it's worse for mechanical pencils, because you can always reload them with tiny graphite sticks. So I keep a full eraser in my purse to go with the mechanical pencils I use.

  5. Loki My EeePC, of course. I love that name, by the way. I thought it was kind of fruity at first (Just like the Wii) but then I realized you can draw out the name in a high pitched squeak and annoy all my friends. "EEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeee!"

    Netbooks are the best; way better than laptops. It's only a couple pounds and it fits right into my purse, along with my notebooks for school. Course, I also have a desktop PC, so I don't even have a use for a full-featured, heavy laptop. People who own only laptops freak me out a little, to be honest.

  6. Snack I like to keep a snack or two in my purse so that when I'm sitting somewhere bored and digging around in it, I find a yummy surprise. Today it was a pack of gushers that have, more than likely, melted into one mass of artificial colours and sticky goo.

    They also have a thoughtful warning on them! Gushers cares about the life of your child.

"Horrible Bosses" and why can't I just watch movies like a normal person

This week I saw Horrible Bosses.

Being a comedy, which are notoriously hit-or-miss, I wasn't sure what to expect but.... it has a very fleshed out cast and is starring Jason Bateman, whom I absolutely adore. (COUNTING MUTANT) I figured the chances were pretty good that it would be more on the hit side than the miss side. And hey, we had four free movie tickets, four bored friends and one hot-as-hell summer evening.

Turns out it was thoroughly enjoyable, and I certainly got some good giggles out of it. (I could have done without being in a full theatre and having, effectively, a live laugh track. Other people's laughter is terribly annoying.)

But this post isn't about the movie.

This post is about sexual harassment.

As you can gather from the trailer, one of the bosses (Dr. Harris) was an attractive female who was heavily flirting with her employee, Dale.


Who the fuck am I kidding.

It was sexual harassment. You can tell that from the trailer; were a male employer to spray a female employee with water to turn their clothing transparent, no one would call that "flirting." Using blackmail and potential loss of a job to force an employee to perform sexual favours? That's cut and dry sexual harassment. Of course, in the real world, such unwanted advances from an attractive woman against a man isn't considered harassment. In that case, the male is just "lucky." Therefore, the harassment is soon supplemented with the threat of showing Dale's fiancee photos of Dr. Harris in, er, compromising positions with (an unconscious) Dale.

I had a bit of a sick revelation during a short clip where Dr. Harris sneaks up behind Dale and proceeds to lick and nibble on his ears before giving his nipples a tweak. In my head I momentarily swapped the genders involved. Can you imagine a comedy with a scene where a male boss does that to a female employee against her will?

It made me shudder.

And yes, the reactions of the two male friends who know of the harassment is predictable. They respond to the blackmail, of course, but the harassment is just "lucky." Dale is still earnestly concerned about it, but the threat of losing his job and his fiance is enough to keep him quiet.

This is a real problem. This exact situation really happens every day - though it's usually perpetrated against women. I suppose that's what makes this situation suitable for a comedy: the idea of an attractive woman (who is able to "get" other guys, if she wants) aggressively harassing a man is almost unheard of, and therefore is something we can laugh at.

So there we go, two nasty ideas for the price of one: women don't normally crave sex enough to be aggressive about it and it's not a big deal for a man to be sexually harassed by a woman. Of course, I wasn't expecting this to be a particularly feminist movie - even the trailers preceding a 14A movie tend to be rather tasteless - but sometimes it's nice to be able to enjoy mainstream media without that little feminist critic in my head screaming and pointing like an angry monkey. At the very least, I suppose, maybe this movie will open some discussion on sexual harassment against men. Though I doubt it.

There was one nice little tidbit though.

The two other main characters, at one point, turn to Dale to settle an argument over which of the two of them would be more "rapeable" if they were to go to prison. (Each thought they were more attractive and therefore more likely to be raped)

"Nick of course," Dale says after almost no thought.
"Why is that?"
"Rape is about vulnerability and weakness," says Dale.

"FUCKING A!" screamed the little critic in my head. "I LOVE YOU!"

Clydesdales and toothbrushes

I loaded up a toothbrush with a big 'ole gob of toothpaste and shoved it in my mouth.

Something was wrong. Something was terribly, terribly wrong.

I immediately whirled around to face T and pointed an accusatory toothbrush at his (somewhat startled) face.


How dare you! My toothbrush was perfectly happy and healthy until you got your... your... your dirty teeth all over it! I can tell you've been using it because I have never met another person who is so violent with toothbrushes that the bristles fan out like some kind of fucking ... horse foot.

You know those horses with the tassels on their feet. Not tassels, but their hair kind of flounces out about their ankles. Flared jeans remind me of them. Fancy, prancy-face horses.


I have never met someone who can destroy a toothbrush so viscously and so quickly. For a scrawny boy with no muscle, he manages to summon unreal amounts of power for the sole purpose of grinding toothbrush bristles against his teeth.

I have a new toothbrush, by the way. It's green.

"I want the one with more bristles," he says when we're in the toothbrush aisle at WalMart.
"More bristles for YOU TO BREAK!?" I glare at him.

*glare glare*

That boy will never touch my toothbrush again.

Or else.

It's too fucking hot for anything else

"Look at this bunny! Look at this bunny walking!" I said to T, "This bunny wants a treat."

He smiled just enough to appease me and then went back to his IDE

I suppose that is one of the main differences between him and I.

Rabbits walking on their hind legs > tedious copy and pasting of code

The things I fear

We all have things that can keep up awake at night, or things that startle us from slumber, or things that make out stomachs plummet out of our bodies. Fear is a very strong emotion, and it probably the most effective teacher. The thing is, we have evolved far beyond the simple lives of our ancestors and our fears have become more complex and confusing to match our lives. Most people get nervous when ricking bodily harm, such as standing on the edge of a tall building, or risking social harm, such as public speaking... but what about your other fears? What of the rational, irrational and WTF fears that plague your dreams, that make you feel sick and scared, that make others look at you strangely?

The Rational

Listening to someone choke to death over VoIP My friends and I spend a lot of time chatting over Skype while playing video games. My friends are also, apparently, really bad multitasking. You'd think it would be easy enough to eat and not inhale at the same time, but I guess Mother Nature was feeling a little sloppy when she designed the esophagus (or it's a skill my lovely friends have yet to master) Every time I hear one of the bastards coughing, my heart stops. Imagine hearing someone struggle for air and not being anywhere nearby to help them... imagine having to listen to your best friend die in an absolutely pointless way, and not being able to do anything about it. *shudder*

Returning home to find the apartment ransacked/rabbits dead Even during short vacations that are only two or three days, I get bouts of worry over the apartment being broken into, or the rabbits getting sick. Opening the door after returning is always a very tense moment until I can see that everything is perfectly okay.

Forgetting how to breathe I stuck this under rational because I do occasionally suffer from sleep apnea. There are few things more alarming than waking up to find yourself not breathing and then momentarily forgetting how to draw a breath. I fear the day that I don't remember in time.

My heart stopping Related to the above, I also fear my heart stopping. Again, this is for a reason: my whole family gets heart palpitations (my grandfather has a pacemaker). Sometimes my heart will double-beat and then miss the next beat. If I don't stop it, it can go on like that indefinitely. Providing I'm not frozen in fear, I can clear my throat and cough a little and it resumes a normal rhythm... though sometimes it takes a moment for me to remember how to make it stop. Your heart "skipping a beat" is not romantic in any way.

The Irrational

Tsunamis For as long as I can remember, during periods of stress in my life, my dreams are full of tsunamis. I'll dream that I'm at a beach, and in the distance I see a giant wave bearing down on me. The dream then turns into a race up cliff faces, staircases and sand dunes to get to safety before the wave reaches the shore. Of course, I've never seen a tsunami, and living deep inland in Canada means I'll probably never be in any danger from them... and I suspect that's precisely why they feature so heavily in my dreams.

Making phone calls to strangers T and I get into arguments about who should call for a taxi/pizza/information, because we both occasionally panic when needing to make a phone call. If I have to call someone to make an appointment or get some information, sometimes I have to take a day or two to prepare for the task.

Stairs/elevators/escalators I, apparently, have a lot of anxiety surrounding multi-story buildings. In my dreams I have infinite problems with staircases and elevators - the stairs are steep near to the point of being vertical, the steps are so narrow that you can only fit half your foot on each. They routinely have whole sections missing, requiring me to scale a wall with only a handrail for support. The elevators regularly plummet, spin, and turn me upside-down. In real life I get a sick, stomach-plummeting feeling every time I step onto an elevator, and a shiver of relief every time I step off. I'll occasionally freeze at the top of a staircase before descending, feeling like I'm going to trip and fall. Knowing I'm going to trip and fall.

The WTF?

Invisible cars I don't trust people who drive cars. I hate crossing roads. I refuse to cross at a crosswalk if the signal is anything but "WALK" - I will not sprint across while it's flashing. (This annoys my friends to no end, I imagine) Even when I'm crossing "safely," after looking both ways, I experience momentary terror at the thought of an invisible, silent car barrelling towards me. Fuck you, Bond.

I have no friends I can't express this fear out loud too often, because it's extremely insulting... but sometimes I get stricken with the fear that all my friends (and T) are putting on a show or act for some other gain, and that everyone secretly hates me.

Waking up to find it was all a dream I don't think I have to elaborate on this one too much. What if the past five years were only a dream? What if I wake up to find myself back in high school again? That would be absolutely terrible. High school is the worst.

I am the centre of the universe and I don't know it. I sometimes get an eerie feeling when I catch strangers staring at me. Say I'm in a car, idly looking at the passing scenery, and someone half a block away on the sidewalk stares directly at me until we pass by. Who the hell stares at people in passing cars? Why would they stare at me? Is there something about myself I don't know? What if the universe is a creation of my imagination, and everyone who inhabits it knows this, but they can't let me know because if I realize it the whole world will fall apart at the edges?

Airstrikes If I hear an unexpected siren, a low-flying airplane or a distant boom, I get gripped with the fear that we are being attacked by enemy planes dropping atomic bombs on my tiny city. I don't know why sirens set off this fear, because my little Canadian city certainly has no airstrike warning system in place, but there it is.

Sound a little paranoid?
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"Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect."