Why I Like and Respect Steven Universe

[Note: This is a script for this video]

Last Christmas, all five members of my family, could get together and celebrate it. It was a very long time ago since we all were under the same roof, and for the most part, the few days were sunshine and lollipops.

However, at some point, the three women in my family (my mother and two sisters) were out shopping, and my dad and I were home watching TV — and doing it in, more or less, peaceful silence. We were watching Superman Unbound when the girls returned.

My dad rose to prepare dinner with the groceries they had bought. Since I didn’t need to do anything, I stayed put. I wanted to finish the movie.

However, my two sisters joined me, and I was just sitting there half-hoping that the inevitable wouldn’t happen. But of course, it did. They started to nag me.

Them: “Why is it ‘Supergirl’ and not ‘Superwoman’.” Me: “Superwoman is another character, please don’t talk I’m trying to watch this.” Them: “Why isn’t Supergirl buff like Superman?” Me: “Their powers don’t come from their muscles but the fact that a yellow sun gives Kryptonians superpowers. Shut up; I’m trying to watch this.” Them: “Why can’t a female superhero be muscular too.” Me: “Well, some are, but the real reason is that it doesn’t sell comic books (and movies) and if you’re so worried about it, make your own goddamn comic book and stop complaining about other peoples creation. Now, SHUT THE FUCK UP, I’m trying to watch this!

There’s something inherently disgusting with wanting to change people’s art. Of course, I’m not saying that you can’t criticize other peoples creation. But there’s a difference between that and complaining about a movie somebody is trying to watch. Also, the complaints of my sisters were reminiscent of a very specific cun…uh…critic.

This is why I respect Rebecca Sugar. Instead of complaining about breasts being too big or superheroes being too white, she made her own thing. Of course, she might be the type that goes in for gender studies and complains about too little women in STEM in other parts of her life. But with Steven Universe, she was the change she wanted to see in the world.

And even though, Steven Universe showcases progressive values, it’s not obnoxious about it. Miss Sugar and her associates are merely presenting a world that is, in their view, more ideal. And there’s a lot of things in the show that I wish could be the case, but to my knowledge, isn’t. For instance, I would love if only talking could always solve the problem, and a dangerous enemy could as easily become part of the good guys as Peridot did. I think the show is an excellent escape, and in that sense, it fulfills one of the essential jobs of entertainment.

So to end on, I like and respect Steven Universe despite it being the wettest dream of social justice warriors. Because it’s quite an engaging show, and they didn’t complain it into existence, they made it.

The Hellish Experience of Traveling by Plane – A Quick Thought

[Note: This is a script for this video]

If hell is other people then being at the airport on a busy day is the fifth circle of hell. When I have to fly, I usually dread my future journey for a week, as I would have dreaded an appointment for some light torturing.

First, you go through security, and usually, you can’t avoid a slow-moving line inhabited by mostly inept people — ineptness is the reason the line is slow-moving.

Then, you have to wait to board the plane. A period I always spend in the most isolated place of the airport. This is an okay experience because the source of most of my misery is gone. Of course, braving the rapids of humans to and from blissful isolation isn’t fun.

When the boarding time comes, it’s normally painful. Since you’re waiting in another slow-moving line, sometimes in a jet bridge that is boiling hot. Who thought it was a good idea to make them human greenhouses? Get rid of the fucking glass walls … pretty please.

When you have shuffled your way to your seat, you can look forward to an uncomfortable chair, roaring engines, and babies crying. You end up wishing that you would fall out of the sky. At least then the suffering would be over.

But thankfully, at some point, the plane lands and you know the misery will end soon — if, of course, you took a direct flight to your destination.

In the end, I’m glad that I can reach a distant destination in under a day. But I wish the process could be a bit more comfortable. Maybe someday.

Super Meat Boy and Why It’s Okay to Give Up – A Vlog

[Note: This is a script for this video]

In 2016 I bought Super Meat Boy because I finally could get it for a price my cheap sensibilities could live with. I played it for a while but then somewhere in Rapture I gave up. I felt I had better things to do than dying a billion times on average before I could beat a level. And for two years I didn’t touch it at all.

Even though I mainly play games for the challenge of it, a game has to walk a very fine line of being fun and challenging for me to complete it. And Super Meat Boy had become more challenging than I liked.

But three weeks ago I decided to try one more time. And this time around I was more determined. And after countless deaths, I conquered Rapture and then The End and could watch–with great satisfaction–the non-true ending of the game. Then, of course, came the realization that I wasn’t quite finished. I had to beat 85 dark world levels before I could try to beat Dr. Fetus once and for all. And to access a dark world level I had to have already achieved an A+ in the light world version of it. In other words: To truly finish the game, I had to do a lot more work.

Yes, work. Because at that point I had gained the same feeling that made me stop me playing Super Meat Boy the first time around. It felt like I was going to complete the game because I had to do it. And since that’s not true I said: “Fuck it, let’s move on to something that’s fun to play.” In short: I gave up.

And I think, from time to time, it’s important to give yourself permission to give up. Not just with video games that no longer are fun, but with everything else. For instance: Last year I dropped out of college after only one month. I had realized that I didn’t want to complete my boring degree to get an equally boring career.

And at this point, I have already spent too much of my life cooped up in boring buildings that I did not want to be in. Reading dull books by old, dead, and academic people. And taking test after test to see how good I was to short-term memorize facts. I’m just so tired of dealing with that and similar bullshit.

As you would stop playing a video game, you no longer feel the challenge is worth the reward, you should stop doing anything that wastes your time. And that includes going to college.

Obviously: You shouldn’t listen to me. After all: I’m a college dropout. And I might be telling you this because misery loves company.

But I will certainly not go back to college or ever reach The Real End of Super Meat Boy. I have, believe it or not, better things to do.

Death by 10,000 Happy Moments – A Vlog

[Note: This is a script for this video]

Oh my God, I like soda. And I drink a lot of it.

People–like me–who consume soda and sugar-heavy products on a regular basis are favoring small hits of joy over avoiding massive pains in the future. Pains like: going to the dentist, living with diabetes, and being a fat-ass.

In fact, I’m quite surprised that I am as thin and disease free as I am. I should at least have gotten diabetes by now. I guess I’m just lucky and young.

But I can’t rely on luck and youth forever. In other words: I have to do something about this unholy habit of mine before it’s too late. So no more drinking pop, or any other sugar-containing liquids for that matter. Only water.

Actually, during 2015 and up to late 2016 I didn’t drink soda at all. But with going back to school, and therefore being around more people drinking the sweet nectar of the underworld, I became tempted and started drinking it once again.

At first, I only drank energy drinks, excusing that behavior with the lie that I needed the extra energy boost. And then later I started drinking soda again because: “If I drink energy drinks, that many people say are even worse than soda, I might as well consume the lesser of two evils too.”

Now, the main problem for me with being entirely soda-free is that sooner or later I will go for a long bike ride where I will have to buy some liquids to stay hydrated. And I can’t quite shake the feeling of being ripped off whenever I buy water because it’s usually free. Of course, technically, I don’t pay for the water itself, but rather the privilege of being on the road and still have access to ice cold water.

And I just have to repeat that idea over and over to myself until I have internalized it. And all in all, I think that overpaying for water now and then is better then slowly killing my body and mind with poison.

Because I do think sugar–in extreme concentrations–is poisonous. I’ve already mentioned how it can ruin your body. But how can it destroy your mind? And my answer is: I don’t know, I just have a feeling that longterm soda consumption is detrimental to the brain.

That answer is not the scientific one, but fuck it, I’m not a scientist, and I’m not going to use Google to back up my hunch. In this case, I do think ignorance is a good thing. Because if I find through my googling that there is lacking evidence that soda is harmful to the brain, I will more likely start drinking it again.

Of course, I might sooner or later fall back to my old ways anyway. But if I can stay clean for the rest of 2018, I think there is a fighting chance that I might forever end my romance with this fucking thing*.

*: “this fucking thing” is a coke can I am showing in the video version.

 

Four Reasons Not to Vlog – A Vlog

[Note: This is a script for this video]

I can’t believe I’m doing this.

Yeah, that’s right, I make vlogs now. I have officially become an egocentric hack just like the rest of youtube.

Anyway, vlogging is something I have wanted to do for quite some time now. But various reasons have stopped me from turning on the camera to make a fool of myself online. And here are most of those reasons:

Reason number 1: I might become famous.

In my mind, it is a great thing to just be another nameless guy in the crowd. Because then random people will not come up to you in the street and demand human interaction from you. Well, actually, I do think non-famous people have to deal with that too, but not that often or extreme.

However, I think it requires an ungodly amount of subscribers before one gets recognized on the street and talked to. And, thankfully, I think I will never be worthy of an ungodly amount of subscribers.

Reason number 2: There’s a change that I might be publicly shamed.

Without showing my face, comes the privilege of being freer with what I can say online. If I say something controversial, it’s improbable that it will ruin my life. Showing my face, however, makes that possibility a bit larger.

For example: let’s say that I don’t like raisins, and I make a video explaining my reasons. And then someone from the We Love Raisins foundation sees it; hating every word my ignorant mouth spews out. Well, now, I’m not as anonymous on the internet as I was before I started makings vlogs. So it’s much more likely that the members of We love Raisins can do stuff that will hurt me in real life. For instance: get me fired.

Reason number 3: People I know might see me.

I am not a fan of the notion that people I know offline can see what I do online.

To demonstrate – with an extream example – why I do not like this, let’s use the fictional organization from before: We Love Raisins. In this scenario, I’m really unlucky, and one of my old classmates is serving on the board of directors to We Love Raisins. Now suddenly they know my real name. And it’s much more likely that they are going to show up at my door and kick my ass for my raisins hating ways.

Reason number 4: Vlogs isn’t really the best form of content I could make.

To many, especially naturally gifted speakers, vlogs might seem like a low-effort way of making videos. And relatively speaking they are right. I know I could spend my time dedicated to making better videos then vlogs.

Instead of making 200 vlogs that nobody will care about, I could spend the next five years making a kickass, hand-drawn, 10 minutes long animation that everybody will love – most likely. Granted, I would probably go half-insane on the journey to make that animation, but I would have made a cool thing that very few people are going to make during their lifetime.

So, knowing the alternative ways I could spend my time, I was reluctant to start making vlogs. However, I ended up producing almost nothing during my first two years on this platform, and if I make vlogs, at least I’m making something. And also, I can use vlogs as practice.

I mean, someday I want to make more advanced videos with live-action bits in them. And since I’m a firm believer in the saying, “practice makes perfect”, I think that making vlogs on a regular basis can be beneficial to me. For instance, I think it will make me a better writer since I have to write every script. And also, I hope it will make me good at performing those scripts without relying on jump cuts after each sentence or so.

The End of Learning to Talk

[Note: This is a script for this video]

I dreaded this day, but I thought it was still in the distant future. This the end of the podcast for now. My co-host, Chris, couldn’t do it anymore. But since we have no listeners, I do not feel as sorry about this situation than I would have been otherwise.

For a while, I thought about trying to recruit another guy from the internet as my new co-host. But I think it would have been too complicated since we don’t have anybody that is subbed to us. And I felt a bit wary of asking random jabronis on the internet to be my new co-host.

So no more episodes.

Actually, I might still upload one in the future since I have had an old episode on the backburner for quite some time.

Anyway, seeing that I am more or less free from the curse that is editing the podcast, I can turn my full attention towards my own channel and start producing more content there.

However, I do hope we will someday be able to return and learn how to talk once again.