Just a post to keep the blog alive. (Little known fact: blogs are like pets or children, if you don’t feed them, they die. I’ve been a bad blogfather.)
Go go gadget 0-based list!
0.) So this blog’s been faltering largely because I’ve been focusing on Other Things. Work’s taken up epic amounts of time. When I haven’t been working, I’ve been trying to get a thesis done and to study for my comps. I WILL finish this M. Phil. I will. Period. And so between Thesis stuff and work and daily chores and errands and such, time’s been scant of late.
1.) And when I haven’t been working or thesising or studying for comps or doing chores and errands or sleeping, I’ve been totally addicted to Red Faction: Guerrilla on the XBox 360. The single player campaign’s pretty decent. Story holds no surprises for people who played the first two of the series. (Other, of course, than the “what? I already freed Mars. I have to do it again?” factor. Seriously, guys, three revolutions is enough. Let’s try to make this one stick, alright?)
What’s been particularly addictive, however, is the multiplayer. The game-modes that make use of the destructive buildings make for a fun, variable game play experience. The deathmatch modes are fun, but not particularly new. Some of the maps have some balance issues (one, in particular, is a “first one to rocket launcher wins” sort of map), and some of the weapons are either useless or too powerful. But really, the gameplay in all of the multiplayer modes is at least solid, and in some cases (Siege, in particular) pretty damned awesome.
2.) Shooting’s flagging. I don’t have the time or the money to be as competitive as I’d like, so I’ve scaled from “practicing for competition” schedule back to the “maintain high competency” schedule. A couple hundred rounds twice a month. I’m not going to win the Bianchi Cup, but I can keep them in the 10 ring at conversational distances just fine.
On that note, I’m going to be scaling my armory down a bit. I now have one pistol (my XD 45) I can use for carry and the occasional competition. And while I LOVE my CZ-75, I shoot the XD more accurately and not much slower than the CZ. So while the CZ was originally going to be my competition gun, I think I might sell it off. Similarly, I think my Heritage Arms .22 revolver may get sold. It has been a lot of fun, but it was essentially an impulse buy. I’d never shot a 22mag before, so I got it, shot it, liked it reasonably well. Now it’s just sitting in the top of my closet.
Heck, I’m even considering selling off my Walther P22, which is a good little piece, save for the fact that it was accursed straight from the factory with sloppy sights and a magazine disconnect “safety”.
My Mosin’s down for the count with a crack in the chamber. (And actually a piece of it missing that came flying out on extraction of a round.) So I’ll probably break it down to parts, clean it up, and give it to my buddy Paul who has a Mosin.
Of course, if I get rid of all that iron, I’ll probably wind up immediately buying one of those new T/C Ventures in 30-06. Seriously, those rifles are so sexy it hurts. And they’re priced at just $500! That is, if I can find one.
All of that would leave me with every piece I’ve thought might make up a well-stocked gun safe. I’d have a good, reliable shotgun (Mossberg 590A), a carry pistol (Springfield XD .45), a militia rifle (Sig 556), a full power bolt action rifle (T/C Venture 30-06), and a .22 of some kind (Marlin Model 60).
3.) Politics, politics, politics. The health care debate is unfortunate in that it’s hiding some bigger debates we need to have in this country. Many of them the sorts of procedural, metagovernance that gets ignored too often in favor of rabid, vapid DoSomething-ism.
Honestly, I’d like to give you an incisive, well-thought out rebuttal to the actual material of the bill as proposed. But, like much of Congress, I haven’t read it. I haven’t time. Of course I have the excuse that I have a job. That IS their job. Of course, it’s not like they have time. These days legislation is about DOING SOMETHING NOW NOW NOW OR WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE JUST FUCKING PASS SOMETHING ALREADY.
“Do something, even if it’s wrong” is all fine and good in one’s personal life, but it’s a shitty way to run a government.
So anyway, I’ll just leave you with two thoughts, one practical and one principled, on socialized medicine in general. First, the inimitable P. J. O’Rourke who quips: “Think healthcare is expensive now? Just wait ’til you see what it costs when it’s free.” And on the principled side of things, I’ll turn the proverbial mic over to Marko Kloos:
“Health care is great, and I wouldn’t want to be without access to it.
But a “human right”? Hippie, please.
I have no doubt that the owner of the thusly-stickered car considers him- or herself to be educated, informed, and thoroughly on top of things. By proclaiming health care a “right”, however, he or she demonstrates a rather galling unfamiliarity with the nature of rights.
Let’s get the most obvious point out of the way first. You cannot have a right to something that necessitates a financial obligation on someone else’s part. “
4.) I’m becoming increasingly fond of the topical blog format. I’m also becoming somewhat sick of my chosen-in-the-spur-of-the-moment blog title. I doubt I’ll split the blogs again, because really, if that’s the case, then where will it stop? I mean, I could easily have a music blog, a politics blog, a gun blog, a science/geekery blog, and a blog for everything else. And that thought annoys even me, and I love my own writing.
I think I’ll probably just play with the way I use this blog first. Probably rename it, probably start on the stylistic changes that have been LONG overdue. I’m currently in arears to my graphic designer, so I won’t be asking for any new graphics until I pay her what I owe her. Or until she agrees that me helping her haul her furniture into her new 3rd-floor walkup was sufficient payment.
5.) And now, off to Thesis work. I’m 60 pages in, with lots of material left on the cutting room floor, as it were. It’s depressing to think that I’ve got probably another 20 pages to go knowing that I very well might have cut that much, if not more, out. Still. Them’s the breaks I guess.
I leave you with this video of an absurdly awesome cigarette trick courtesy of a crazy old juggler:
Updated 2009.7.7: Somehow WordPress managed to eat the link to Marko Kloos’ blog post. Fixed.