24 September 2011

Its not all doom and gloom..oh wait, sorry it is.

Link to latest article...

This week impending doom


21 September 2011

Powder puff of disgruntlement

Most of you know where I work, indeed many of you toil away beside me so will know what I'm talking about when I ask what kind of sad, misguided moron thinks sending an envelope full of talcum powder to a company is going to solve anything?

Lets say you have an issue with the service you have received, is grinding the company to a halt going to get your issues sorted any quicker? Does the amount of time wasted by the emergency services away from possibly real life or death situations by your selfish and foolhardy actions keep you warm at night? Does the financial drain this puts on the local authority fuel your misplaced sense of bravado? I know going to work and occasionally fearing for my safety makes me a much more efficient and diligent worker, why I'll sort your issue out immediately now you have got my attention with your act of incredible testicular fortitude.

Muppet, the police will be at your door in no time, and your bill will be just as high when you finally get out of nick.


18 September 2011

Don't call me four eyes

31 years of my life I lived in ignorance regarding the difficulties encountered daily by a large selection of the population. Last weekend I picked up my first ever pair of glasses. No big deal, I hear you say, and indeed at first it wasn't. My sight had improved no end simply by attaching a pair of lenses to my face with a metal frame. I could see the leaves on the trees, the birds in the sky and the creases on the faces of the Longton Saturday morning shoppers. Glorious doesn't quite cover it.

However, as the hours turned into days, all was not as simple as it at first seemed. The glasses move about during the day, sliding down my nose which leaves me at times looking like an oversexed I.T student as the glasses have a habit of sitting across my nose slightly wonky. So, I'm constantly aware of the exact angle my glasses are perched just in case I come across as looking a little simple to people who are talking to me face to face.I guess the paranoia has already crept in.

Who knew that the bridge of your nose could sweat? Glasses wearers that's who. It seems a small piece of metal is enough of a stimulant to your noses pleasure/stress nerve endings to get them all hot and bothered. It feels as good as it sounds.My dreams are also conveniently viewed through lense-less frames now.

Then there is the image concerns. Those that know me wouldn't exactly call me a sharp dresser, but as long as my flesh is covered I don't tend to bother to much what I wear. Glasses are meant to make you look smarter, but what if you are already smart pre-specs? Does your perceived IQ get a slight increase when perceived by others? If not why the hell not? Don't I deserve that little extra imagined IQ even if secretly I'm too busy pondering my sweaty nose and making sure my glasses sit correctly with a spirit level? No, probably not.

While it is taking time for me to get used to my glasses, It is interesting to see the response I have had from people since I began to wear them. People I know generally seem to think they suit, people I have just met say they cannot imagine me without them, which I really found odd, but I guess first impressions of people we meet count for a lot, think of all the people you know who wear specs, they didn't always but that's the only way you know them. I dare not even contemplate going to a theme park and tackling whatever glasses etiquette applies there, (Nemesis, now glasses on or off???) can anyone tel me if theres some kind of handbook for instances when glasses are appropriate or not? For example is the ultimate mood killer "hold on duck, let me just put me glasses away, I dunno wanna get em all steamed up"? I think it may well be.

So, i apologise for living 31 years and not acknowledging the difficulties faced by specs offenders everywhere, I hope this blog entry goes someway to building bridges between us, and eventually I will accepted as one of you. Sweaty nose and all.

17 September 2011

Online gaming for Wusses link

Its here large and in charge!



Online gaming...for Wusses

Online gaming for Wusses

  First person shooters

Bruce Lee, William Wallace, and the army of Spartans that the movies 300 is based on would make excellent online gamers, able to look an impending beating right in the eye before handing one out tenfold themselves. As we are still some way short of overcoming the moral and ethical dilemmas that prevent the Battle Royale type weekly television show that most of us crave, online gaming is the place to flex your virtual guns and show the world just how badass one finance manager from Woking really can be. Gentlemen, welcome to the arena.

First up, in order to strike fear into your opponents’ hearts before the game has even begun, the aspiring broadband battler needs a suitably brutal gamer tag. JoHnNy5izAlive, SnuGGlez69, and Mr_Pacifist are out a complete non-starter. A good gamer tag needs to slap the eyeballs of your competition  and make them sit up and question why their ass is suddenly twitching, not ponder whether you like fluffy ickle kittens playing with woollen balls or rainy days under the duvet  in front of Dawsons Creek the most. Tags such as P'wnan _the_Barbarian, I_do_UR_MUM_daily and Mr_PaciFIST are a good start (feel free to use these if still available).

In the words of Rage against the Machine (which incidentally you should play at full volume during every online play session)” know your enemy”. The majority of game lobbies seem to be populated by loud, abrasive American teens, they come in two flavours. One is long in shrill nasal annoying voices, short on gaming skills, the other likes to thrust upon the lobby his poor taste in Hip Hop and Rnb in the futile attempt to prove how gangsta he is. Easy to pick off in large numbers due to their short attention spans and lack of testicular fortitude,  not quite a satisfying enough kill  for a gamer of your elite status yet just the appetiser needed before we move on to the prize kills further up the online gaming food chain.

Next up is your casual gamer. It is a fool who thinks this gamer is easy pickings, as casual gamers usually stay off the mike and don’t draw attention to themselves. They usually work alone, picking off strays in game to rack up the kills, but having the foundations of a basic game plan. The casual gamer’s one weakness is that once their game plan is sussed by an opposing player (i.e. you) they become predictable, and yet another easy kill to add to your ever growing tally. Good knowledge of the map layouts/game scoring mechanics and game physics will help you dominate this class of player until they inevitably rage quit and run to mommy.

In game stats/rankings etc. should not always be used to assess a players actual skills. As in real battle, being a bit of a sneaky bastard can not only save your own skin, but can also be an effective technique to help rack up the kills. There is a type of gamer who will enter the lobby as a very low rank, and to all intents and purposes screams “I’m a noob, please shoot me repeatedly as I look at the floor and continuously walk into walls”. However when the game begins, I_c_ded_people74 becomes some kind of whirling dervish of automatic gun fire and wanton carnage. When the dust settles and all is said and done, he’ll find himself sat atop of the scoreboard, and although the jig is well and truly up, the damage has been done and he exits the lobby sharply looking for fresh meat to fool. While I applaud this type of cyber subterfuge, there is really no other way to guard against this type of foe other than to regard every player you meet as a potential John Rambo.

This brings us on to the clan player, and the toughest foe of all to best, but we didn’t come this far to brick it now and that shiny new gamer tag you are just breaking in needs a bit of experienced blood spilt over it. Clan players like to think they are the elite. If they made a film about online gamers, these would be the tossers who high five each other after each kill, shower together and ultimately get taken apart by the ballsy up and comer whom they beat savagely somewhere in act 1. There real strength lies in numbers, as clan players’ work together in game to effectively control the match. They alternate game plans switching from a map mop up technique to all outs stand-off dictating the flow of the round. The key is to try and isolate a clan member and take him out, several times if necessary. This should have a similar result that punching a hornets nest usually has, as the clan will abandon their current game plan and more than likely come after you either individually or collectively. Now the playing field becomes slightly more even and using the skills honed from reading this article and plenty of in game practice, clan players should be as just as easy to pick off as the rest of the player types discussed.

An honourable mention must go to a friend of mine Sir_Rinse_A_Lot (psn) whom has developed a technique that not only generates him a shed load of kills, but an inbox full of hate mail. If an opposing player kills him, he will mercilessly hunting down said player and melee kill him whenever possible, over and over again until the game ends or they end up quitting and having a good cry. Not only does this technique ensure a steady flow of kills, but the effect of psychologically dominating your opponent and the satisfaction that it brings make it an extremely effective technique battle technique.  Sir_Rinse_a_Lot, we salute you.

So, are you ready to graduate from noob 101 and kick it up a notch, are you ready to go toe to toe with the modern day equivalent of Rome’s gladiators? Fire up your console/PC and look me up… I’m the p’wn collector (Steam) and don_vennuchi (psn) I’ll be the one standing atop of a pile of smoking corpses bringing the noise.

2 September 2011

Decisions maketh the man

Last week I made one of those decisions that although was not the most significant a man can make, will have long lasting consequences. Possibly for the rest of my working life.
I had a good job, in a prospering company which would lead to new and better opportunities for myself, and my family. Yet I decided to leave it, and go back to work for my old employer. The money is worse, opportunity developments are few and far between and the freedoms and status I had in my present job will soon be replaced with tedium and routine.

So why did I make the decision? The simple truth is I hardly see my little girl, and the little time I spent with her was spent with my head still in the job. My daughter deserves better from me than that, and indeed it is my inability to switch the pressures of the job off in my mind and spend what little time we had together as daddy and daughter.

The financial implications weigh heaviest on my mind. Questions such as am I short changing my daughters future by turning my back on a a well paid job? Will I be able to provide her with all the things she needs, all the things she likes? Will she be proud of me when shes older if I'm still an administrator, and all the non importance that entails?

I know deep down that money, status, respect etc, it doesn't mean a thing if you are all of those things and alone, or emotionally detached from those around you. My daughter needs her dad to be happy, she needs him to be around when shes taking her first steps, or speaking her first words, not with his head in a spreadsheet.

Many of you will probably think I'm mad to make the choice I made, and it was by no means an easy decision to make. However, I know I choose right every time I see her smile, and I look forward to seeing that smile a whole lot more.