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blade.jpgAbout a year ago, I joined a Horde guild that seemed pretty heavy into RPG. Guildchat and meetings were delightfully in full character. And many of the players kept journals of their characters in blogs.

So, I created a few characters myself, both for a Tauren Shaman and a Forsaken Rogue. And, I created blogs for each of them as well…

The Rogue’s Blog: A Blade in the Dark
The Shaman’s Blog: The Accounts of Ishanu

I really wanted to continue with each of these characters. However, I soon learned that the guild was pretty much on it’s way out. The characters never got to developed any further.

I look at these blogs today and I think what short a life these two virtual beings had. Here today, gone tomorrow. A whisper in the wind. And outside of a bit of data on the World of Warcrafts servers, and some text on the WordPress server, it is ulikely they will ever been seen or heard from again.

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Many videogames, in one form or another, are a type of simulated hunting. And I believe many people enjoy the hunting experience found in games because it satisfies a desire to hunt that has been part of genes (or at least the male genes) since our species began. Being a pacifist an animal lover, I have no desire to tote a rifle into the woods and shoot bambi. But, I can understand the attraction. I’ve felt the rush of the hunt, and the kill, in many games.

The PSP videogame “Monster Hunter Freedom 2” has been very satisfying in this respect. You hunt more and more dangerous prey. You strive to get better and better equipment to load the odds in your favor. Many instances, you have to find the monster before you can kill it. And sometimes, after it has taken enough damage, it runs away and you have to find it again.

But beyond fulfilling a primal urge, what else makes one want to take down more and more challenging quarries? Is it purely the challenge? Do we crave bragging rights, even though you may never have the opportunity (or desire) to brag to anybody? And why do the real, big-game hunters keep looking for their next, great challenge?

Well, whatever the reason, these monster continue to live in my PSP, always available to be beat and beaten again. And each time, I try to do it quicker and quicker, and take as little damage myself as I can.

Blogged with Flock

The world has too long tried to solve its personal and societal problems through religion, politics, and philosophy. I say that instead of praying for someone or something, do something about it. Don’t look for the secret of or purpose of life. Life is what’s right in front of you. There is no hidden or predetermined purpose for your life. Our goal is just to survive, and help family and friends survive. If you want a purpose, make it yourself. But don’t call it a purpose. Call it a goal. And the goal is up to you. And if you aren’t harming anybody with or in the pursuit of that goal, you wont’ get any argument from me.

The world is so caught up in religious, commercial, political and nationalistic purposes and directives. And they’re all so convinced they’re come from a higher being. Or at least a universal truth. So much of our ills arise from the world of thoughts and fictions. What about the realities? The individual people’s problems. Yes, taken as a whole, these problems are monumental. But taken one at a time…?

Praying is a cop-out. But so is complaining and blaming a political party, philosophy, or figure. If you feel strongly about a political philosophy or figure, either do something about it. Or shut up. If you support the war, either sign-up, or send the troops goodies and letters. If you don’t…write your representatives or go out and march. I love something I saw on the net somewhere: “America’s not at war. The military is. America is at the mall.”

I watched the documentary Rainbow Man/John 3:16 the other day. He was the perfect example of someone being sucked into the world of thoughts and fictions. He was experiencing the world through preachers and tabloid show producers. And each have a monetary agenda. The first wants donations, while the second wants advertising revenues. They fed on him and left him a delusional zombie.

Blogged with Flock

The author of Unorthodox Atheism posted the following:

In an email I received late last week, an anonymous person who I assume to be a man (is it sexist to assume a woman wouldn’t make as many spelling and grammar mistakes?) told me that the main reason he still believes in god is that Atheists are loud, annoying pricks and I was one of the most annoying.

I’ve been noticing stuff like this lately. People tend to be criticizing atheists with no rational reason at all. And they use the adjective “atheist,” as well as adjectives like “evolutionists,” “abortionists,” “scientists,” “liberals,” “democrats,” and “homosexuals,” as derogatory labels with little or no reference to their meanings. And often they use these adjectives as if they all mean the same thing.

Who I am

I live in Whitehall, PA (outside of Pittsburgh), with my wife Monique, stepdaughter Manon, our Sheltie puppy “The Dude,” and four cats: Piggy, White Devil, Bee Bee, and Tigger.