Thursday, 24 April 2014

Death and other things.

Lately, I've been thinking of death. Not in a big way or anything, just in the way where one is falling to sleep then jolts awake when the thought "oh crap, I'm mortal, one day I will no longer be!" pops into one's head. 

It's annoying. I really do jolt awake, I'll be there, slipping off into sleep then boom! My brain says in a creepy voice "Hey, bitch..." and I say "...yeah?" and it replies "You gonna die!" and I sit up and make a kind of mewling noise and stare at my hand, touch the walls, pick up a book or whatever, just something to convince myself that I'm still here, that things are real. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining as such. I've had those thoughts/reactions to said thoughts for pretty much as long as I can remember and they used to be more frequent to the point where I'd have them every night. Now it's only like once or twice a week so yeah, that's a marked improvement. It's just this last week that they've become a regular reoccurring thing again. Mostly, it's down to university. I might actually fail this year. I wouldn't be so arsed because I don't even want to go onto the second year of this course, but I need to pass it to get onto the first year of my new course. I didn't learn this until quite recently, after I'd pretty much given up any pretence of caring for the current course. So I was way, way, WAY behind on work and knowledge of what I needed to do and I know, don't misconstrue this, I am blaming myself entirely for it. I counted my chickens before they were hatched, ate my goose before it was cooked and other such avian related metaphors on making poor assumptions.

This, of course, leads to stress. I'm having to make up a lot of ground in things I don't want to, or even can't really, do and it's not really going fantastically well, no, not well at all. Which leads to me being awake, depressed, fatalistic, at five in the morning. Then, when I do get to sleep, I have anxiety inducing, cryptic dreams about, well, everything. I can't even explain. Like, last night I had this dream I was at a formal party and this girl I once knew was there and we got to talking, but she was a completely different person. It was someone I really cared about, I hadn't seen her in quite a few years, she had, literally, a new face, a new personality, new mannerisms, almost entirely different to the person I knew, but it was still her, and in the dream she tried to engage with me but I rejected her. Obviously that wasn't the only thing, there was also a part about being a vampire and trying to sell a castle but being unable to let go of it. 

From them it's easy to see what the problem is. Holding onto the past, incapable of accepting change and moving on. But then, maybe it's the other way. Maybe it's that I should be holding onto the past. I mean, I do tend to stop and drop things pretty abruptly, simply letting things go because it's easier than holding on. I don't know, I'm starting to hate going to sleep though, again, which is something I thought I'd gotten over.

As I've said in other pieces, depression is something you don't really ever get over. The best you can do is suppress it for a while. At the end of it, those thoughts always come back. The ones about not being good enough for anything, anyone, the thoughts about how insanely close to oblivion everything just is, so what's the point of anything.

I can feel it there, at the back of my mind. I think it's there at the back of everyone's mind. At least, I'd like to assume so, because then it would mean I'm less crazy by virtue of everyone else being crazy too and, you know, that shits relative. It's frustrating though. Every time, I fuck up. Not other people, me. Myself. I. Who knows, maybe Douglas Adams was right with the other Trillian thing. You know, if there was another you created who, in their life, had made the opposite choices to yours, they'd wish they made the choices you made. In other words, we'd both regret the choices made....grass is always greener is what I'm trying to say in my own, distinctively obtuse way. I don't know. Can't find out. Just nice to think that no matter what I'd be fucked up anyway, right?

But yeah, it's always my mistake. It might sound egotistical, or conceited, but honestly, I've basically been in control of my own life my whole life, people have bent over backwards to help me and all I've done is piss on their help. All I ever had to do was be something slightly other than myself and I might actually be somewhere right now. Hell, even these diatribes are a lesson in self-gratification aren't they. I could stop writing them, right now, could not post it. But I'm going to, aren't I? The whole world must know and read about the all Great and Powerful Terence...though I'm sure they won't. Maybe it's a cry for help. I don't know, I have a bad time actually asking for help. Maybe, I really don't know. Indirect, perhaps. Not that I think anyone really could, or indeed, even should because I think that way. 

I better get to work, increasingly disjointed rant over.  

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Xbox One: A rope of Sand

I hate talking about self indulgences. No, wait, that's an absolute lie, I love talking self indulgently. Everyone does it, talking about things that make them happy in some way. Even if it's just talking about "ooh, we've got to help the farmland critters from being made into tasty treats and wearable cleats!" people only talk about that because it makes them happy in some way. Whether it is the thing itself or the reaction they get from talking about, pretty much every conversation is self indulgent. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, it's basic pride and yes, in general, we're taught that pride is a bad thing, a sin even. So we talk about the little sins, the peccadilloes, the little things that we can take a small amount of pride in because modesty is so much better which leads me to the Xbox One.

For those of you unaware of what the Xbox One is, it is the third video game console (I know, why is it called the One if it's the third...I'll get back to that...) by the mega-corporation Microsoft, who brought you other such fantastic things as Windows 8 (you mean people on desktop pcs didn't want tablet software running their systems?!) and the Zune (which, by all accounts, was actually a decent piece of hardware, just had the bad luck of running against the apple-ites) and okay, yeah they did do good things like basically popularise home computing and make the industry what it is today.

The Xbox One is the third machine they made for the sole purpose of playing video games...well, I say sole, they actually marketed it as a home media centre, able to watch tv, play games, listen to music etc. i.e. a machine that does the function of several machines, an "all in one machine" if you will (and that, my friends, is where the name comes from, told you I'd get back to that!), which, if you're a gamer like I am, was a worrying noise for Microsoft to be making. It makes sense from a business sense, more generalised content means more sales right? But it also means a lower degree of emphasis on video games, you know, the thing that made the previous console (the Xbox 360) a genuine contender for the crown of Console King (what is a handheld gamer to a console king, what is a console king to a PC God?! I joke, I joke, all three types have merit to them....unlike tablet/mobile gaming, fuck those so called "games") and it shows.

Well, that's not entirely true. The thing that is really hurting the Xbox One at the moment is a lack of titles. Surely this a result of Microsoft's broadening of their scope for the console. Not exactly. The Playstation 4, it's prime opponent (Nintendo, with the Wii-U, just sits in the corner with its fingers in its ears, repeating over and over to itself that "gamers just want more mario with more costumes, more mario, more costumes, more mario, more mario, more mario...") who in the lead up to both consoles release dates put the emphasis on gaming, again and again, and mocked and derided the TV-centric model of the Microsoft effort.

Yet, here we are, five months down the line and both systems don't really have that "game", that title that sells systems. As good as Titanfall is, all the great publicity it gets, is basically for naught. It's available on Xbox One, sure, but it's also available on PC and even the Xbox 360. The PS4's major release, Infamous: Second Son looks fairly fun (on a more personal note, it looks to me like Aaron Paul with Powers simulator, which, if they had followed that path, would have been a far greater title) but in terms of enticing people on the fence to buy a £350+ console for? Don't get me wrong, I bought an Xbox One partially on the back of the Titanfall release, but mostly it was out of a desire to throw my hat into the ring now. I'll be buying a PS4 somewhere down the line, but that the Xbox One, Microsoft, who disregarded games in basically all their speeches have that slight edge at this point in the race (an edge that will continue to grow as shown in this video), are moving back to games being the focus, its a good time to be a console gamer. 

At least, it will be, when we actually get some decent titles out, come on man, give me something I can't live without, not a numbered sports title/last gen port like what we currently have! Later taters!