Thursday, March 22, 2007

How to Give a Cat a Bath

I got this off of the Board Game Geek forums from Bruce McElroy. I'm not sure if he is the original author or if he got it from somewhere else, but it's really funny.


How to Give a Cat a Bath

1. Put both lids of the toilet up and add 1/8 of a cup pet shampoo to the water in the bowl.

2. Pick up the Cat and soothe him while you carry him to the bathroom.

3. In one smooth movemement, put the cat in the toilet and close both lids. You may have to stand on the lid.

4. The cat will self agitate and make ample suds. 3 to 5 Minutes should do the trick. Never mind noises that come from the toilet. Cats make that noise when thier having fun.

5. Flush the toilet 3 or 4 times. This provides a "Power-Wash" and "Rinse."

6. Have someone open the front door of your home. Be sure that there are no people between the bathroom and the Front Door.

7. Stand behind the toilet as far as you can, and quickly lift both lids.

8. The cat will rocket out of the toilet, streak through the bathroom, and run outside where he will dry himself off.

9. Both the commode and the cat will be Sparkling clean.

The Dog


I'm still laughing at 'self agitate', haha.


Wednesday, March 21, 2007

On the Downfall of Creativity in Hollywood and the PC Game Industry

I'm starting to get really frustrated with the apparent lack of ability for anybody to come up with new ideas in the Movie and PC Game industries. There seem to be three or four main diseases that strike down creativity in these two industries.

1) Sequelitis: You can't just release a good movie any more. You have to have part 2, and 3, and 4, and 5, and so on, for ever and ever until people refuse to keep watching them. What's worse, by about 3 or 4, the director and some of the actors call it quits and the quality plummets. Actually, sometimes things go south far before then.

2) Genreitis: For every original, well produced hit, be prepared for scores of cheap knock-offs over the next several years. In the PC industry they're called 'killers' (ie Sacred is a Diablo Killer or Call to Power is a Civ2 Killer). In Hollywood they're called, ... well... I'm not sure what they're called, but they're crap. Remember when Lord of the Rings came out? Remember all of the really bad fantasy movies that immediately followed it? Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but flattery has nothing to do with it, I assure you.

3) Similarititis: Movies come out in twos and threes now. For every Deep Impact, there is an Armageddon. What are the odds on that one? Two movies come out in the same year and they're both about large asteroids heading towards earth and threatening to wipe out all life on the planet. It's not a coincidence. This is kind of like an advanced stage of Genreitis where they actually start stealing each other's ideas, rather than simply copy their success.

4) Remakeitis: This one only really happens in the movie industry. About 90% of the time when I watch a movie and think to myself "Wow, that was a really well done and original movie", it's because it is a remake of some movie that came out in the 50's. Oceans 11, and Fun with Dick and Jane are good examples of this.

I don't think it's as easy as chalking it up to greed or cowardice. It's just a sad phenomenon, I guess. Back in the day, one dude working out of his mom's basement could hammer out a hit PC game in a year. Now it takes a team of 27 developers 2 years to come up with something that's competitive. The same goes in Hollywood. I'm not talking about the movies that cost 10 mil. and wrap in 6 months. There are still plenty of those. I'm talking about the blockbusters. You simply can't do one for less than 150-250 million now. I can't blame them for not wanting to risk 250 million on a movie that may only gross 50-100 million at the box office. In both cases it comes down to the cost of making it look good. Special effects, and for PC games, graphics, are required to be top notch, but are still fairly expensive to do.

I have limited experience in computer graphics and have read up on the film industry somewhat and I don't see an end to this issue any time soon. Somebody's going to have to find a way to make it more affordable for this copy-cat situation to go away. In the mean time, here's rooting for the little guys that somehow manage to cobble together something out of nothing because nobody is willing to back their risky new idea for a game or movie.

Sid Meier's Civ 4

I broke down and got this the other day, in spite of it being fairly old already. I figured I couldn't go wrong with this one. I really love Civ 2 and 3. Civ 1 was slightly before my time.

Everything about this game is better than Civ 3. They've really outdone themselves. Some changes are obvious, like the fact that it's beautiful. Some changes are less obvious, like the modding support and improved AI.

I tried playing on the warlord setting, which is a difficulty level of about 3 out of 10, and wasn't humiliated, but was pretty much stopped cold. The AI is definitely not a push over any more. The only problem with that is that now I have to think a lot more to be able to actually win, even on the mid levels. I'm not sure I want to think that much while playing a game that lasts several days.

Still, with the apparent ease of fan modifications to the game, it looks like I'll be playing it for some time to come. There are mods out there that essentially change the game into an entirely different game. I've seen anything from Star Wars to fantasy to ultra realistic conversions, with historically accurate unique units for every civ.

All in all, I'm not even slightly disappointed in my purchase, even with having to re-think all of my old strategies. Oooh, I just thought of an interesting rant that I think I'll ad to my blog as soon as I submit this. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

RIP Darth Kittyous

I had a dream last night that our cat, Darth Kittyous, died. As most dreams go, the reality of the situation was a little off. For one, I didn't seem to care all that much. Also, he was still warm and fuzzy, instead of smelly with riggormortis. After he died, I was posing him in different positions and tossing him around a little bit.... not sure why. Then, suddenly, he woke up with a meow. I figured I must have re-started his heart with all of the posing and tossing. Anyway, I'm not sure what all of this means, but I feel like he's more of a Luke Flystalker now... or maybe Hunt So-low. I don't know why, ... I mean, he's fat and lazy and entirely too strung up for something with claws that likes to sit on my lap... but I love the little tuna addict. I was trying to give him whipped cream last night, but he didn't want any. I kept tryin to tell him that it was made of cream... OF CREAM!

Monday, March 19, 2007

What's this?

Hey, I have a blog! Now if I could only post in it more than once a month.