Thursday, April 28, 2005

Sintax Errors

The cloudy concept behind friendship was so much clearer in Vexation 0.6. It was all an easy to understand matter of location and circumstance. The kid next door, almost inevitably, was dubbed "The Best Friend". As the distance to their house increased, the closeness of the relationship was diminished. Those closest would walk to school together, hang out at school together, and walk home together. The hours of daylight were limited, but those you had were usually shared with those nearby. The others fled home early in order to make it to the magical sanctuary of their own homes before the dreaded darkness heralded the end of playtime. Options, truly, were limited and easy to understand.

In the later years, somewhere near the release of Vexation 1.6 things began to change. With the inclusion of "Motor Vehicle Transport" in the new version suddenly the proximity to my house was no longer a sufficient gauge of friendship. I was able to be more selective in the people I was to spend my time with throughout the day. Those that shared classes or an interest in other extra curricular activities were favoured as friends. Version 1.6 was quite possibly the most drastically altered of all the various releases. It was the first to include the beloved "Alcohol" toolbar as well as a rudimentary "Girls" toolbar. It was also the first version to include the unwanted options of "Pay Rent" and "Support Yourself", which was only barely offset by the inclusion of the infamous "Disposable Income" feature and the amazing "Format own Living Space".

The next few adaptations arrived unremarkably. The "Girls" option was replaced by "Women". A few limited edition sets that friends invested in came with this option unavailable, but did include a "Men" option. A few even splurged for the Platinum edition which included both options - More bang for the buck they insisted, but I never bothered to try it out.
Around Vexation 1.9 came the insidious "Choose Career Path" expansion. The options included with this expansion pack was simply obscene and the jumbled user interface was a mess. I spent the next few years pointing and clicking with abandon. The result was a haphazard mass of friends, acquaintances, relationships, and career choices that never really amounted to anything substantial and were left lingering in the background taking up valuable memory and slowing down the entire process.

Eventually I just became completely disgruntled with the whole program. Convinced that it was bugged or carrying some harmful virus I reformatted everything and did a custom installation of Vexation 2.3 in which I chose not to select all the possible options in hopes that my overworked brain would be able to make its way through the basic processes.

Thankfully it worked. I was able to fine tune the configuration until only those friends that were really required for the rest of the programs to operate efficiently remained. Shortly thereafter the bogged down "Career Path" feature started operating with greater efficiency, and the previously undiscovered ability to "Ignore", "Delete Contact", "Pay Mortgage", and "Make Truck Payment" were located.

By the time Vexation 2.6 arrived I felt I fully had the hang of manipulating my way through the maze of programming and had a relatively decent grasp of how they all worked together. Feeling confident I began to recover a few files saved from before the purging of Version 2.3. Sadly I discovered the old file formats to be incompatible with the newer programming and all I managed to achieve was to somehow load up some harmless, yet increasingly annoying, ghost program that occasionally resulted in oddly worded Pop-Up windows that forced me to select "Yes" or "No". So far, regardless of which I have chosen, they have ultimately faded into the background without crashing the whole program. They appear to be benign and take up so little space that I haven't really tried to have them banished to cyber hell yet, although I have considered letting the Virus scan quarantine them until I have time to decipher their purpose.

Installation of Vexation 3.0 I approached with a high degree of trepidation. The few remaining friends did not speak too highly of the newest version. Still, I was filled with confidence that I would have little trouble. After all I hadn't bothered to install the free shareware expansion "Children and Marriage" which, as far as I could tell, was the source of most of their complaints. Without pausing to read the instructions (I had already been through the upgrading process 29 times) I clicked "Next" and awaited the expected results. All seemed to go off without a hitch so I started the program and immediately noticed the absence of the "Hints & Tips" function. This version assumed the user had some previous knowledge of the operation of the Vexation program. Thankfully I did. I fear someone who had skipped directly to 3.0 would have been woefully overwhelmed.

I now find myself becoming rather bored with Vexation in its current incarnation. The last time I felt this way led to the inclusion of the "Add Inane, Insane Blogspot" feature. To it's credit it managed to keep my attention for nine month, but I'm thinking it's about time to invest in another expansion pack. There are a variety of choices available that have appeal these days. Or I could just reformat the whole bloody works and see what happens.

Either way the future looks interesting... The newest upgrade is scheduled for release in another 6 months and already I am greedily anticipating whatever new goodies it offers. Occasionally, however, I dream of a simpler time, of the ease associated with good old Vexation 0.6. I'm just not sure if I could still operate it the way I remember.

On a completely different note: Today I surfed my way back to a recently added link that leads the unwary victim to Misanthropically.blogspot.com. It reads something to the effect of "For more of Vexations musings check out her blog". HER blog? Ah well, that would no doubt explain the overemotional, irrational, unreasonable and generally confusing direction I've been taking lately...I really must check into the configuration more closely. But I really should run, I've got this overwhelming urge to cook, vacuum, do some laundry and discover the source of that annoying ticking sound.

Ambiguously yours,

Vex.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Earth is Full. Go Home.

So, for the first time since about the 21st of November (With the minor exception of 10 days in Mexico in January - But that really doesn't count as it passed by in a relatively drunken haze. There was a wedding if I recall correctly) I have the distinct pleasure of enjoying temperatures that managed to climb above 0°C. It was a momentous occasion which would have, had we possessed the necessary party supplies, resulted in the largest party this side of the Arctic Circle. Alas, deprived of alcohol, pointed hats, noise-makers, and women, I did what any normal humans would do in order to celebrate - wandered aimlessly about in shorts and T-shirts drinking coffee, peppermint tea and smoking handfuls of Marlboros. I must admit that some days are far more lame and uninteresting that I would like. Actually most days are. Which would explain this nasty addiction to living vicariously through others via weblogs. My lord do I ever have to get a life soon.

Anyway, April 26th official marked the beginning of the end of this lovely little adventure. Soon the Land of the Midnight Sun will be little more than a fond memory and 42 not-so-fond memories. Already I can feel the disease of depression dissipating. A few more days and I should be back to my normal, well adjusted, and blissfully happy self. A few more days after that and I should be back in the civilized lands.

First order of business - A shave. It's been two weeks since I last tried to chisel through this growth on my face and I'm beginning to look all Grizzly Adamsish. The fact I haven't had a haircut since January 8th only adds to the look. Oh yes, don't kid yourself - This kinda sexy cannot be set free on the rest of the world. I could not live with the guilt of being responsible for such mayhem. Especially considering the chaos that is apparently already occurring. Rumour has it that there is a veritable love fest happening down south. I can only assume it has something to do with the world operating without Cupid's poorly aimed arrows. With luck I will arrive in time to share in the...umm...Festivities before Cupid² pops up and begins her reign of terror. So my friends - Stash your morals, store your inhibitions, rid yourself of hate and embrace the love! I'll be along shortly. (Provided I can find the map home)

Cheers kids - Here's to happy homecomings.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Spring cleaning for the soul.

It is that time of the year when the gloomy depression of winter begins to dissipate. The magical time of year when the bibulous crowds and your own multifarious cadre of friends begin to venture forth and congregate on roof top patios. Looking around I can’t help but feel like an odd heteroclite amidst the stream of conformity. Desperately searching the subdued grandeur of nature for a brief glimpse of some majestic apotheosis, yet I see only sinister and discordant charades. The great masses long ago forfeited their claim to any mental acuity and now only prance about in some obscene portrayal of what they wish they had become. Empty and deficient of any true feeling and left strangely enraptured by their own phosphorescent radiance that appears to be fed by the attention of others. A nascent thought – Perhaps I should give up the pointless bloviation, the struggle against senescence, and the nugatory attempts at understanding. Focus instead on properly developing my own atrocious excrescence of self-importance. Perhaps it is only a pneumatic glitch of my own creation that creates the feeling of discord within. It’s possible, I suppose, that in some twisted fashion it makes sense that environmental activists and protestors for peace are accused of sedition and treasonous thoughts while military action and money hungry corporations are supported; applauded as the saviors of national sovereignty and somehow manage to incur the divine blessings of celestial beings. My own righteous nimbus seems to be transforming into a nimbostratus that threatens to rain heavily upon my parade of pointless petulance. Mayhaps it is high time I stepped down from the height of my utopian soapbox before I suffer from vertigo and tumble from my lofty perch. Unfortunately I have encountered too many who seem to hear the same dissonant song echoing in their minds for me to think I am the only one searching for some arcane explanation for our current predicament. Although sadly it seems the ones carrying the compass to point us in the right direction are not the ones sailing this ship. A slight shift starboard and straight on towards the Lands of Cockaigne and then...damn...

Where did my map go?

Friday, April 22, 2005

The Fiends of Friday.

The insignifcant splendor of the world that surrounds us. Here today, yet a fleeting glimpse at what tomorrow may fade into history. Engrossed in fallacious drama of their own creation; in chasing sinsiter shadows of conspiracy and intrigue, the view is overlooked. The celestial nobility and majestic symmetry of balance is subdued as we bask in the phosphorescent radiance of our own surreal self-importance. A radiance that tends to wax and wane as the phases of the moon (But with far less precictability).

How, really, can I be expected to take the time to savour the majestic grandeur of nature? I find whatever free moments I have are devoted entirely to deceiving myself. Such an austere undertaking requires dedication and discipline...

Aww crap... Don't you just hate it when work interferes with a perfectly good web log of gibberish?

Mind Freeze

Today's installment of semi-cohesive sentence structure has been postponed in order to bring you these prerecorded lists:

Things I miss:

- Toilets that flush.
- A bedroom that doesn't have an inch of ice around the doorway
- My bed.
- Someone to share my bed with.
- Long nights of drinking Traditional and playing Big Buck Hunter.
- Absinthe at midnight.
- Drinking Pirraminna and talking about absolutely nothing until the wee hours of the morning.
- The noon coffee delivery.
- Sleeping until the sun sets.
- A sun that actually sets.
- Caesar's for lunch.
- My couch and a DVD.
- Vehicles without tracks.
- Choosing my own meals.
- Listening on the phone for an hour as grandmother describes her trip to the supermarket.
- Picking up the milk and eggs that grandmother forgot.
- Zaya
- Bacardi for breakfast.
- Convincing people to call in sick on Monday morning.
- DuMaurier.

Things that I've come to expect:

- The relentless rattle of a diesel generator.
- Luke warm coffee you can stand a spoon in.
- Laundry miraculously appearing clean and folded on Wednesday.
- Motion sickness every three days while sitting in the office.
- Fish Friday.
- Prime Rib Sunday.
- Knowing what day it is by the food that is served.
- Newspapers that are two days behind.
- Going to bed at 4:00 Pm.
- Hitting the snooze button at 11:00 Pm.
- Using the word "Roger" on the radio a minimum of 25 times in a day.
- Hearing the word "Roger" a minimum of 200 times in a day.
- Enduring the sound of Static for 2 hours a day.
- Being able to count the combined IQ of 3/4's of the people around me on both hands.
- Northern Lights that put hometown fireworks to shame.
- Polar bears, Arctic foxes, and seals.
- Flannel.

---- Now back to our regularly scheduled deprogramming and bitter propaganda for the sole benefit of myself ----

Over the past few months it has been mentioned that I am, for the most part, inspirationally dead. I also came to the understanding that I am a walking fashion faux pas, woefully unable to comprehend the minds of women, somewhat vague in the expression of my feelings, obtuse, and unsympathetic to the needs of others. I lack passion, joy, depth, understanding, empathy, and the ability to experience happiness. I am a stubborn, selfish jackass and incapable of taking anything seriously for any amount of time.

Almost brings tears to my dark and soulless eyes. A wee bit harsh don't you think? I mean really... Unable to experience happiness? That is an outrageous statement. I find joy and happiness daily. Usually by observing the torment of others. It's quite amusing much of the time - To watch as someone gets all upset and twisted about over trivial nonsense. The smallest, most insignificant details that tend to send people over the top. That is simply funny.

Is it wrong that I take some strange solace in the misery of others? That so long as others are distraught and overly concerned I am far more able to feel content? It's possible that it is, but I fully believe that if I am to continue living a life free from stress someone else must take up the slack.

Now, before somebody gets all bent out of shape and works them self into a frenzy, let me explain. It's not tragic, life threatening misery that causes me amusement. That is sad and, well... tragic. I'm talking about those that appear to experience physical pain because their cappuccino had too much foam, the traffic light took too long or their flight was delayed by five minutes. These people make me happy.

So to all you people wound just a bit to tightly - Thank you.

On a personal note: It appears that the infamous "Powers that Be" have increased their efforts to suck away my will to live and that I have almost completely succumbed to their evil plot to drain anything that resembles inspiration from my mind. Alas, it was all for naught. I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel that shines as a beacon to guide me home. Sadly in a month I will likely be found composing a similar list complaining of the unbearable heat, the snakes, the spiders, and anything else I can find to complain about in the great Lone Star State. Finally - new topics to bitch about.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Half Moon Rising

Today it occurred to me that life has been one endless struggle between the forces of Self-Confidence and Self-Doubt. They battle tirelessly over the token prize that is my soul. Daily the tide shifts from one side to the other only to sway back again in the spiraling winds. Which, I've decided, it not such a bad thing. It keeps me relatively balanced. An overabundance of either would be entirely detrimental to a long life of happiness. Too much confidence and I'd be likely to attempt to overreach my potential and become horribly scarred by my inevitable failure. Too much doubt and I'd be unlikely to attempt anything without that nagging voice in the back of my head saying "You're doomed." That is my own perpetual pit of paradoxial poison. Long ago I learned to accept a little internal strife and move on with my life.

Today's issue, however, is not about me. It about the abundance of arrogant, chicken-head, fleecy ass-clowns that have thus far survived on mommy's dime and daddy's dollar and have just recently entered what the rest of us have cleverly dubbed "Real Life." It is also about the select few who have decided it would be far more productive to sulk in the darkness of their basements in a state of perpetual fear of rejection and overall despair. Somewhere in the sewer pipe of life you reach a point where you are going to be forced to face the humanity on your own. Life experience is a large factor in how you deal with this, as well as being an integral part of personality development. Which makes me think that those who have been babied, doted on, sheltered, and given everything they've ever desired (Overly verbose perhaps, but I decided spoiled brat was unsatisfactory), are at some point going to break down into some type of hysterical temper-tantrum complete with fits of yelling and bouts of pouting. It's unlikely to be a pretty sight and not likely to be their best moment. Emotional scars and possible jail time to follow. Those that fear interaction and whose only reactions is to force their head further up their own ass? Come out, come out wherever you are. Step forth into the light and rejoice. I almost guarantee you won't melt or burst into flames. Almost.

Alright, now that I have that out of the way - On to far more important topics.


Mordant News Briefs

International: Pope Benedict XVI. 78 years old. Recalls the Dark Age fondly. The Vatican status quo will be maintained.

National: Canadian Politics. WTF? Liberal Vs. Conservative vs. Bloq vs. NDP. It's a bloody cage match that would make the WWE proud.

Localish: A red light district to save beleaguered districts such as Forest Lawn? $200,000 for "research" into successful brothels around the globe? Extra points for the one who managed to get this proposal consideration.

Personal: Offically annoyed with office memorandums regarding Professionalism and Excellence in the Workplace that fail to recognize the subtle differences between there; their; and they're.

In conclusion: "PUHFFTHTHTHTHTTTTT..."

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

- End of Days -

Just another day in Paradise...

.

It is entirely possible that someone misunderstood when I said "Fade to White".

Nuff Said?

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

The Forsaken.

“I think therefore I am.”

Which, unless I am sadly mistaken, means there is a plethora of those who most definitely “Are Not”.

They are those wonderful automatons wandering aimlessly through the day, forever opting not to switch on their minds. They are everywhere and they spread rapidly. They can be found feeding on next to nothing, reproducing at an alarming rate, and eternally infecting others. If you are careful you can mark them by the stink of decaying fiber that follows them. They are seemingly forever lost in a polluted and convoluted labyrinth of their own social narcosis trailing crumbs of depleted principles. They conform and consume and they are content.

No, No, No…Trivial garbage of no meaning or consequence. It’s possible I may be guilty of becoming somewhat repetitive and that is simply unacceptable. Lacking suitable esteem for myself, and all nine readers.

The cries for rainbows and unicorns have once again been heard. Shun the darkness and skitter haphazardly into the light. What choice do I have but to bow down with proper obeisance and heed the cries?

Hmm? What is that the voices are whispering? It’s my Web Log? I can do with it whatever I please? Feel free to continue to display artificial disdain for mankind in a pathetic imitation of real content? Embrace the elitist derision as an adequate replacement for a meaningful commentary on the state of affairs?

Perhaps overly bold suggestions - Somewhat unseemly and confusing for visitors to a site entitled “Mordant.”

Sunshine, lollipops, and cutesy pink elephants – That’s the key. The key that opens the door to vivacious glee that aches to be free.

Alas, my search for lost keys must wait. I really must get back and check on my simmering stew of haughty indignation and mendacious exasperation. Once it is finished I’m sure I will feast hungrily, explore the wonders of
www.poweroptimism.com and…

Fade to White.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Sardonic Utopia

Washed out idealist.
Losing to hypocrisy.
Clinging to fading delusions.
Holding on to corrupted objectives.
Dancing in the darkness.
Guided by the pale moonlight.
Exhausted by the futility.
Faith slips into a distant memory.
Guarded emotions shielded from the light.
Self-awareness replaced by narcissism.
Satire becomes reality.
Reality becomes a dream.
A dream becomes a nightmare.
Always falling.
Never reaching the ground.
Feet firmly planted in concrete shoes of your own making.
Disdain for the sycophant.
You’ve become one.
Apathetic is your epitaph.
Impassioned caring is but empty dogma.
Meaningless rhetoric spills from your lips.
Vicariously living through the convictions of another.
Eternal apprehension in a world gone awry.
Sadistic pleasure from the misery of another.
Tainted hope and twisted integrity.
Chasing the perverted shadow of perfection.
Sublime in ignorance.
A contented inhabitant of a fool’s paradise.
With a delightful façade of inner angst.

Ahh... Now that feels better.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

No no. It's not me. It's you.

The most wonderful thing about being me is that I do it so fabulously well. Let's face the truth - I'm utterly brilliant at it. No one else on earth pulls off being me with quite the same flair. Not that I would even begin to expect you to try. Simply put you'd fail miserably at putting together the cynical smugness and thinly veiled contempt in just the right proportions and wind up seeming haughty and ostentatious.

And that would never do. An unreasonably hand-drawn facsimile at best. Unworthy of any prize.

So, as me, I offer a humble bit of advice - Stick to what you know. Which I'm hoping is being you. I'll be the first to admit it's something you do far better than I could ever hope.

Perhaps because I don't feel comfortable in an expensive suit. Perhaps because I never learned to knit. Perhaps because I've decided that a cheap Shiraz is often better than an expensive merlot. Perhaps because I'd rather lounge in some cheap dive listening to live music instead of mingling with the "chic elite" in some posh club. Perhaps because I've never mastered the linguistic talent required to say "Baaa".

The reasons vary incredibly. They are vast and endless. You may excel at math, cranial surgery, playing an instrument, writing a song, writing obituaries, securing a loan, or playing the system. Whatever. There is, without a doubt, a collection of things that make you uniquely you and not me.

And please don't try and tell me about what they said, or they did, or that you heard that they were going to do. I, being me, would be forced to snatch away your own insipid naiveté and beat you upside the head with it. They will peddle any twisted version of you that they think you may actually invest money in. Approach them with that stunned, vacuous look and they'll sell you a cheap twisted version of you. With accessories.

Why? Because that is what they do. And they do it very well. Well enough to convince me at least. I'm not about to lie to you - I'm one of those suckers that the corporate advertisement people love. An impulse buyer. One who walks in and purchases something based purely on the pretty colours and giving to no actual thought to whether or not I really need such a thing.

What's that? A laptop computer? In metallic blue? Sold.
A shiny new 4x4? In black? Sold.
A cell phone? With camera? And changeable faceplates? Sold.
Scintillating harmony balls? No useful function? Sold.
Zen Garden? With real rocks? Sold.
A used halo? Slightly tarnished? Sold.

One soul? Never used? Like new? No thanks. Already have one.
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