Monday, May 31, 2004


Beat Onimusha 3 at around 11:45pm on Sunday night. Go me!

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Back in The City again

Today I started playing Thief 3 (aka Deadly Shadows) ye olde PC. I was kind of scared, since Deus Ex 2 pretty much crippled my system and Thief 3 uses the same engine. This time, however, everything is working smoooooothly.

The Thief series of games is probably my favourite of all time. Yes, there are only 3, and the last one came out back in 2000. However, you just can't beat them in terms of atmosphere, story and just overall coolness.

I've read a couple reviews saying that the game looks horrible and the NPC's look like wax dummies. Granted, the Thief games have never been drop dead gorgeous, but I think that Thief 3 looks pretty sweet. The environments look great, the lighting is even better than ever and the NPC's are actually quite detailed. Sure, they look a little odd, but the Thief series has always had a somewhat stylized appearance anyway.

Unfortunately I only was able to play for a wee bit tonight, but thankfully my fears about it being unplayable have been put to rest and I'm really impressed with the two missions so far.

The only thing missing is an opening cinematic that's as cool as the original one. Heck, ANY opening cinematic would be nice. At least the interstitial cutscenes between missions are just like the old ones, only sharper than ever.

Enough babbling for me. I'm off to try to finish Onimusha 3.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

Like I need to be any MORE nerdy...

I got new glasses today. I can see! The scary thing is that when I take them off now I can barely see. And that's what I thought was normal prior to getting the glasses today!

I'm still adjusting to them though. I feel like I'm 8 feet tall when I'm walking around with them on.

The nice thing is that my monitor actually looks clear now for the first time in about 2 months. I thought it was just that my monitor was going, but no. It's my eyes. Sigh.

Eyes... Glazing over...


I have somehow watched 9 episodes of Buffy: Season 6 in less than 24 hours. And that 24 hours includes the 9 hours of work (10, with travel) and sleeping for a good 5-6 hours overnight.


Not that I mind. Very good stuff so far, but my brain is starting to frazzle. I think I'm going to go get my new glasses (woo) and mow the hayfield that is my front (and back) yard. It seems it's actually sunny today too, so that'll help get me outside again...

When NOT to give game tips...

This is an interesting article.

The gist of it is that this guy was talking on the phone with his co-worker (who was at work) and suddenly started shouting, "There's a bomb in the building! Everyone needs to get out!"

So his co-worker evacuated everyone as they thought it was a bomb threat. Turns out that the guy says he was just giving his kid advice on what to do for a particular mission in one of the Grand Theft Auto games.

As the Gamespot article points out, "the Union article raises more questions than it answers--Did Jones identify himself when he made the call? If so, why would Police need to trace the call? Didn't his coworker recognize his voice? Did he have a beef with his work? Why was he helping a child play the M-rated GTA?--the outcome of the incident is clear. Jones is currently in jail on a $5,003 bond, and will face up to 15 years in jail if convicted."

Sucks to be him.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004


Hmm... It looks like 24 isn't premiering next season until January 2005. Just in time for my paternity leave! Woo!

From what I've gleaned from der 'net, it won't have any breaks during the course of the season and the premiere, midseason special and finale will all be 2 episodes back-to-back.

I still think it's the best drama on TV, inasmuch as it's the only one I will not let myself miss. There are a few other shows that I try to watch on a weekly basis, but 24's the only one that I concider 'must-see TV'.

Though I do like my Corner Gas, Crossing Jordan, ER and What Not To Wear.

And The Simpsons is a given.

Yikes. It's sad that I've just boiled down my television viewing habits to those shows. Bleh! Granted, I just watch the really good stuff (Buffy & Angel) on DVD, but that's only going to last me into next spring at the latest. Sigh.

Boop Boop Boop Boop

Season 3 of 24 wrapped up tonight. I highly enjoyed this season. It definately picked up a lot in the last half of the season and also ended up wrapping up a lot of characters and storylines that have been hanging around since first season.

It was pretty tense right up to the end. And Jack showed what it would be like for someone who had just gone through as bad a day as he had in the last 5 minutes or so of today's finale.

Good stuff.

I'm interested to see what they'll do next season. They'll have a lot of empty spots to fill, cast-wise, so they can make a lot of new storylines come to pass. Plus there's the question of just when the next season would take place. Julie thinks it'll pick up the day after this season, while I think it'll be around a year later, maybe a bit less.

Oh, and I've come across a few websites that have said, and supposedly corroborated, that 24 is moving to Monday nights at 8 or 9pm. Not sure as to the exact time, but it looks like Monday night will be the new night for 24. Oh well. I'm usually in the car, driving home at that point, so I might be taping it a lot. *shrug*

Once more, with feeling.

Woohoo! My Buffy: Season 6 DVD set should be arriving today or tomorrow. Woo!

I'm slowly converting my family and friends to the Buffyverse. My brother and his friend both turned their noses up at the idea of watching Buffy, but then after I lent them Season 1 they've come crawling back, wimpering, to ask if it would be at all possible to borrow the rest of the collection to watch. Oh, and if it's ok with me, could they please borrow the Angel sets too?

Hee hee.

I'm planning on getting Julie hooked on it if she gets enough time between her time off work and when the baby comes. Granted, according to the doctor her BP is a little high and when she goes back to the doctor next week he wants to talk to her about labour, so you never know... The Spiglet may be arriving early, but hopefully it'll wait till we get the nursery done.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Only about a month left!

I just realized that I hadn't put any pictures of Julie and her big tummy up on the website yet.

So here you go!

[Ok. I fixed the link so it should be showing up on everyone's system now, not just mine. Julie couldn't even access it from her profile on my computer. ed.]

Go See It Now

You must all go run out and see the wonder that is Shrek 2 right now. I saw it on Friday and it is an exceedingly hilarious movie.

I liked it better than the first on, actually. The story is just a little tighter than Shrek 1. Plus I found the sight-gags and in-jokes a lot subtler this time, which made for fun viewing.

And who can resist Puss In Boots?

Oh, and my favourite character from the first one, Gingerbread Man, had a much larger role this time around.

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Craaaazy wedding

Today we went to Julie's cousin's wedding. It was actually a really good wedding. It was just funny from start to finish.

It took the mothers about 5 minutes to light the unity candles as their little BBQ lighters weren't lighting. They just stood up at the front of the church, frantically clicking away until someone found them a book of matches.

Then the groom came trotting down the stairs to grab the bride before she had been given away by her father.

Dan (Julie's brother) was officiating the ceremony. When he was getting them to say their vows, he said, "Daryl, repeat after me. Yvonne, I take you to be my lawfully wedded husband..."

The look on his face when he realized he'd goofed up the gender was almost a good as the gales of laughter.

The rest of the ceremony went smoothly and was over in 20 minutes (yay).

Then we went to the reception, which was at the Sarnia Yacht Club. I had a nice view of the lake and was watching the storm come rolling in when suddenly the screen popped out of the window I was beside and landed on my head. Of course, this got everyone laughing again.

Sigh. Crazy night.

Unfortunately, the DJ they had sucked. When the DJ doesn't know who Outkast is and seems to just be playing a lot of those Jive Bunny hits o' the 50's remixes with just a hint of country, you need to worry. Ah well.

Of course, that was all made the more palatable by the two best words in the English language: "Open Bar". :)

Friday, May 21, 2004

Amuse yourselves...

Well, Julie & I are heading to Sarnia today to visit the fambly one last time before der baby arrives and also for a wedding.

In our absence, you should head on over to The Dialectizer and laugh yourself silly. Reading the PA newsposts in Jive is pretty funny.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Mr. Magoo, eat your heart out.

Well, I went to the eye doctor today. Long story short, get ready for the return of the bespectacled Brock.

It's always reassuring when they do the test and exclaim, 'WOAH! You need glasses now!'

I'd been wondering lately if my monitor was starting to go or if I was just going blind, since it's looking really fuzzy these days. Turns out it's the latter. My left eye sees perfectly, almost TOO good. My right eye is crazy out of focus though. I used to wear glasses in high school, mostly because my astygmatism leads to nasty headaches. After Julie & I got married, I accidentally sat on my glasses in Mexico on our honeymoon and haven't gotten around to replacing them...

Well, I'm going back tomorrow to pick out a pair with Julie. I don't mind, actually. It was just one of those things I'd never gotten around to doing.

The nice thing is that this should cut down on the annoying glare when I drive at night, which has been getting steadily worse as the years go by. I also have to go back for a peripheral vision test since my eyes are oddly shaped, according to the doctor. I always knew I was a mutant :)


Well, I guess that this confirms it, as only a fansite can.


"Joss Whedon has made a deal with Universal to produce "Serenity", a movie based on Firefly, the series Fox dropped after nine episodes due to "lackluster" ratings. DVD sales of the boxed set have proved that the popularity was greater than Fox had patience enough to realize."

(Speaking of which, Angel had its final episode tonight too. Sigh. So long Buffyverse...) ed.

I'd heard rumblings about a Firefly movie, but this is the first piece of relatively hard news that I've seen. Maybe the fact that shows like Angel & Firefly are getting such great buzz post-cancellation due to DVD sales, networks like Fox will actually have patience for these shows to find their audience before yanking them prematurely.

I've grumbled before, and I'll grumble again. Fox used to be willing to take a chance on sci-fi/fantasy shows. X-Files was in the tank, ratings-wise, for the first season. If it had been release now, it would have been yanked after 8 episodes. Instead, it was given a chance to find its feet and actually went on longer than it should! I mean, who really watched the last two seasons?

Ah, may as well bring the usual list of other shows that Fox prematurely cancelled... Suprisingly, all from Chris Carter, the X-Files guy.

Millennium (great first season, amazing finale to the second season, atrocious X-Files knock-off third season).

Harsh Realm (like Firefly, cancelled far too early. The universe they were creating was just starting to get interesting when they pulled the plug).

And The Lone Gunmen, which would have been a perfect replacement for the X-Files. It was funny, witty and smelled good too. It also injected a lot of needed inspiration to the X-Files universe. But of course, it got cancelled after a season (or was it only half a season?). Sigh.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

It's not a post about breastfeeding, but it's close!

I had a couple brushes with blindness this past week and both were somewhat amusing.

The first was at the church I was visiting with Julie & her family on Sunday. After the service I had to use the washroom so I went in. By the urinals there was an older gentleman with an eyepatch. He was feeling around the walls and I didn't really do anything right at first since I thought he was just getting his bearings. After about a half a minute of watching him fumble about, I asked him if he needed a hand. (Hmm... that sounds wrong...) Turned out he was trying to find his way out of the washroom and got disoriented. I helped him to the exit door, although it was right beside the door to the stall and he started to go in there and I had to get him out of yet another predicament...

So that was my good deed of the week. Helping a blind old man out of the washroom at church. I wonder how long he would have been stuck there, groping at urinals with nobody to hear his cries for help.

The second encounter with blindness was the really funny one.

I was in Kitchener at a church (again) to teach my Driver Improvement course. I had to walk around the building since I couldn't find anyone to open the doors and I figured that maybe there was someone working around the back or in one of the back rooms.

Anyway, I was walking around the back near the edge of the property (which borders on a field) and out sauntered an animal which had a cup in its mouth, or so I thought.

Turned out it was a pretty big muskrat with a styrofoam pop cup completely covering his entire head. It was walking around the parking lot in circles, trying to figure out how to get the cup off and where it was going. I just stood there laughing for a couple minutes as it was totally unexpected and just funny to watch. It did get the cup off shortly there after and then proceeded to just sit there, the cup at its feet, and give me the DIRTIEST look I've ever seen an animal (or person) give me. I mean, it was just ticked off.

I carefully sauntered away, not wanting to be the victim of a pissed-off muskrat. It was pretty neat though. I've seen muskrats before, but never so close. It was maybe 5 feet away from me, tops. And it just stared at me until I walked away.

Yeah. Those are my crazy blindness stories. Woo!

Speaking of blindness, I am going for an eye exam tomorrow morning. I'm glad I had the appointment made last week seeing how as visits to the optometrist aren't going to be covered by OHIP very much longer.

The End Of An Office

I just finished watching The Office Christmas Special(s), which are the official final episodes of an excellent series (and which for some wacky reason haven't been released on DVD here in North America).

It's set 3 years after the second season and brings back all the characters for a Christmas party at Wernham Hogg. Can Gareth get any creepier? Is it possible for David Brent to act any more idiotic? Will Big Keith break out of the finance department and become a professional DJ?

And of course, will Dawn & Tim actually get together?

Gotta watch the series to find out!

I'm still dreading the US version of the show when it actually airs. It MIGHT work, but I still have visions of the US version of Coupling dancing around in my head... *shudder*

Imaginary Girlfriends

Just found this site today. I racked my brain for hours to think about who could possibly need this service....

Don't worry James, I already signed you up... :)

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

FFXII lovin'

Greg over at Real Life Comics summed up the big hooplah nicely with today's comic.(mostly as a rebuttal to PA's recent criticisms).

And here's the PA strip for comparison.


This is a neat site.

The Knacker Factor

It helps you figure out what time of day you're going to be the most tired at and when you'll feel the most awake. According to my stats, I'm bound to conk off to sleep around 4:30pm every day.


I give up

Anyone want to have a peek at the sourcecode for this site and tell me what I need to change to get the blog item text to be white rather than black? I'm too tired tonight to figure it out and my HTML skillz are somewhat rusty since it's been a couple years since I really did any major poking around in source code and I think they've changed the internet somewhat in that time. I tried changing some of the code a few times but nothing seemed to change the blog body text colour. Granted, I am tired and it's late, but heck, I don't know what to do anymore.


Whistly wind

My pasty white complexion may not have tipped you off, but unlike James, I'm not a huge fan of bright sunny days.

Every so often, sure. But give me a blustery, rainy day anytime.

Why am I blogging about this? Well, right now the wind is that nice, howly kind of wind that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up if you've got an overactive imagination and it's past midnight and you've got all the lights out in the house. Nice and spooky :)

Ah... I hear tomorrow will be nice and rainy too. I love rainy days. Cuts down on the glare on the TV and monitor :)

Though I did spend a couple hours outside on Sunday once my pseudo-food poisoning passed. First I did some yard work, then I cleaned out my car (1 garbage bag full of junk and all my ski stuff finally removed).

Then I played Boktai for a good hour or so. Sneaky game developers, making us have to play in direct sunlight in order to win the game. They just want us getting fresh air. CURSES!

Sanity check

I am teaching my Driver Improvement course tomorrow morning in Kitchener and was originally going to teach the course and then go work my shift.

Then I realized that that would mean I'd be leaving my house at 7:30am and not getting home till 11:30pm.

That was when I came to the conclusion that I was INSANE! So I booked my evening shift off tomorrow which means I can get home at around 1:30ish and then get ready for the penultimate episode of 24 at 9pm!


(Why on earth did I think at 16 hour shift was no big deal? Yeesh.)

Monday, May 17, 2004


I just finished Jet Li's latest movie, er, game, Rise To Honor on ye olde PS2. It was a pretty fun game, I have to say. There were some sequences that had me ready to chuck the controller across the room, but after ~10-15 minutes of constant restarts I was able to get past most of them.

A lot of the reviewers didn't like the game, but I did. It was laid out a lot like a movie and the game interface itself was like a DVD. You can go through and pick out the chapters just like a scene selection in a DVD movie. Most of them are rather short, so if you really liked a particular sequence, you can just load that up and give it a whirl. I also like that feature as I had a pretty good idea of exactly how far I was in the game.

And since it was the game equivalent of a Jet Li movie, there was lots of action and cool stunts. Oh, and the backgrounds were incredibly interactive.

There's a scene where you're running across a balcony in an atrium and firing guns at these guys across the opening in the middle of the atrium. I think EVERYTHING was smashed to pieces by the end. Very cool stuff.

Anyway, I've had a long weekend doing all sorts of crazy family stuff (had a baby shower yesterday and did a delayed Mother's Day brunch today with Julie's family) so I'm off to bed.


Saturday, May 15, 2004

Garage Sales ROCK!

Julie & I went out and hit the garage sales this morning and I managed to fill the car with about $40 of her money.

Now she's going to think twice before dragging me out of bed first thing on a Saturday :)

What did I get at the garage sales? Let me tell you!

1 5-gallon fish tank, with filter, light, food and other sundry equipment for $5.
1 SNES, no controllers or cords for $3
'An armful' of books for $.50
1 MS Sidewinder gamepad for $5
1 Star Wars puzzle for $1 or so
The entire Eric Wilson mystery series and some other book for ~$5
1 Dire Straits: Brothers In Arms record (yes, record) - Free with the fish tank.
1 Island of Dr. Brain puzzle game for the PC for $2

And Julie got a baby bathtub and some receiving blankets.

I think there may have been some other stuff, but I can't remember. I just know the car was full.

I did see a Sega Genesis with controllers, cords and Sonic 2 & Mortal Kombat, but it was $20 and Julie wouldn't let me get it. Sigh.

Gotta love garage saling!

Friday, May 14, 2004

Sad, what with my aspirations for forensics...

Well, never let it be said that I ride the cusp of the pop culture wave. Today marked the first time I've sat down and actually watched CSI. Sure, I've seen bits of episodes before, but only about 10 minutes tops.

I've been waiting to get the first few seasons on DVD in order to watch the show in order and amazingly my brother's friend had the first season on DVD and we had a little Buffy/CSI exchange. Today I watched the first 4 eps of Season 1 of CSI and I have to say that I really like it.

There are some things that bugged me about it but it was more along the lines of wierd pseudo-swearing than anything. I know it's not HBO or the Sopranos, but it continues to strike me as odd that one can say 'ass' but not 'God damn it' on network TV. They can say 'guldammit' though. Sigh.

Other than that, and some sort of very kindergartenish behaviour amongst some of the characters which thankfully only lasted for one episode, the science is great and the neat toys they use (which NO public CSI lab could ever afford) are neat to watch. I'm looking forward to watching the rest of the seasons soon.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Why Spammers Spam

This is an interesting little article about the reasons that spammers spam.

Not that it really is any justification for clogging the pipes o' the internet with unsolicited crap, but it does let you try to understand why they do what they do.

Here are the whitepapers that article references.

Babies: Nature's Nuclear Weapons

I found this interesting tidbit about babies on the Encyclopedia of the Pointless.

"Babies have a range of cries from "Look at me" all the way to "topple buildings".

This sonic defense is well documented. In tibet in the early 60's, there was a child born whose cries caused avalanches. In the early 70's, a scientist by the name of Rodger Jugginsworth devised a complex sonic amplifier that would take the cries of a child, gently squeezed, and focus them on targets miles away, with the destructive potential of a hiroshima bomb. Unfortunatly, the project was deemed to be cruel to children. However, in the Yucca Mountain facility, the dormant remains of the baby cannon, and its smaller hand-held Infantile Sonic Amplifier, or ISA, cousins lie, waiting for the day when it again becomes necessary to load our babies into strange contraptions that turn cries for love and affection into a deadly wave of destruction."

Oh, I can't wait for our's!

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

It knows my very thoughts!!!

I've been trying to best the computer at a game of twenty questions.

So far it's been able to figure out giant squid, jalapeno, mosquito and video game.

I did get it to 19 questions, but I've yet to beat it.

Grr... Must figure out obscure object to confuse the computer...

Nintendo DS Revealed

Well, Nintendo has finally revealed what the DS handheld will look like.

There is also a lot of E3 coverage starting to trickle in. I won't bother yammering that much about it, as any quick glimpse of the various websites will tell you what's going on. I will probably put a few things that really have grabbed my attention up on here as the week goes on.

The one game I'm really looking forward to is Fable for the Xbox. I read a preview/interview about it today and it's looking like it's going to be rather special. Gotta love Peter Molyneaux's stuff.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Blame Noel if you don't like the new look

After looking on Noel's website and reading about his new format, I decided that it may be time to put the robot into storage and try some new templates out.

I tried a Coke template for a wee bit this morning, but while I liked the look of it, I did feel like a corporate shill.

So I went with Baby Death. What do you think? Like the new look? Hate it? Let me know!

The nice thing about doing the update is that now I've got trackback functionality in my comment area. Woo!

Monday, May 10, 2004

Hot Shrimp

I just cooked up my supper. It was this Hot Popcorn Shrimp recipe that is in next week's TV Guide. Oh my, it was amazing. I ate a whole shrimp ring in about 10 minutes.

It's essentially garlic sauteed in butter, then you add the shrimp and cook them up and after they're mostly done, add some Tobasco sauce and pepper and lemon juice.

MMMMM.... I just couldn't stop eating them, they were so good.

This is the first time I've cooked a recipe from a TV Guide, but if they're all that good, I might keep a closer eye on them!

Sunday, May 09, 2004

Deep Thoughts, By Brocky

I heard a very interesting statement on the radio today that was probably one of the best reconciliations between free will and predestination that I've ever heard.

I'm probably mis-quoting, but here goes.

"25% of what happens to us is fate, destiny, call it what you will. That 25% is fate putting us into a situation where it is very easy to do either the right thing or the wrong thing. Our decisions, character and how we handle that situation make up the other 75%."

I think that's not completely how the quote went, but it's the gist of it. I thought it was a great idea. It incorporated a divine will and free will into a very simply theory. We may be put into a situation where we can very easily choose to do the wrong thing, yet it is there to see if we have the strength of character to choose to do the right thing.

I guess that from a Christian perspective, it would sort of flesh out the whole concept of God not giving us more than we can bear.

Ok. I was going to expand on that thought too, but now my brain decided that it's time to turn off. I totally have lost the coherent train of thought that was this post.


Friday, May 07, 2004

Kids these days...

Well, today I got to explore Acton with a 4 year old. Sherrie was over to paint the nursery and so I took her little daughter out for a walk around town.

I don't know about her, but I'm pooped. We had fun though. I think I now know the location of every bridge over every little creek in this town and I finally saw the children's section of the library.

We chased some ducks and geese around at the park. One duck was missing one foot. Wierd.

I also showed her the amazing Acton Waterfall and the fish that looks like a beer can on the bottom of Fairy Lake.

I think I got too much sun today though. I'm all burned.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Goblin attack

I think I was attacked at work last night by a goblin, or pixie of some kind.

I had this red splotch on my hand when I left work. It wasn't there nigh on 10 minutes before the end of my shift, but by the time I left, there it was.

When I got home I noticed it was a bunch of scratches right in one spot on my left hand. No idea where I got them. I figured that they'd be gone come morning.

It wasn't until this evening that they finally stopped being so red and inflamed, and they're still rather sore and tender.

I have NO idea where the scratches came from though. It's like something little scratched my hand with its claws, but unless something is living in the kitchen at the group home, that can't be the case. I'm just surprised that they're still red and itchy after 24 hours... Wierd.

At least I update more often than James...

I just realized that, aside from the post below, I haven't updated since Sunday afternoon. Yeep!

Let's see. What have I been up to?

Monday I went to work and that was about it. Played a bit of FFXI.

Tuesday, Sherrie, my coworker, came over and we got most of the lines for the stripes on the wall in the nursery chalked in and started taping. Then I watched Master & Commander (very sweet movie) and went to work...

Got home Tuesday night, watched the last bit of M&C and then finished reading my book.

Today I spent the morning taping more stripes on the wall and then went to work. Got home and just had dinner and am going to go finish those crazy stripes. AAAH! Then I'm going to watch The Last Samurai and maybe play some Siren, which is crazy creepy but also insanely hard. Sigh.


Anyone have tickets to Seattle?

I want to go to the Penny Arcade Expo. Why?

So I can win this.


Sunday, May 02, 2004

God has a sick sense of humour

Ok, remember the rant I posted yesterday about the 'leadership conference' I had to attend?

Today I took the guys from work to church. I get there and open up the bulletin and to my horror I see that the special guest speaker is none other than Dr. Henry Blackaby, the same old fart who I had the displeasure of having to listen to ALL DAY SATURDAY!


It just wasn't fair, I tells ya.

Saturday, May 01, 2004

And that last post was just about the content of the conference!

I won't even detail the various things that happened on the logistical side of the conference.

Like having everyone locked out of the building, despite the rainstorm. Like the fact that I ended up playing volunteer tourguide since none of the real volunteers bothered to stand by the doors or knew what was going on.

Etc. etc. etc...

Did I mention I didn't really enjoy the day? Sigh.

It wasn't a TOTAL loss though. I did have a nice chat with my uncle and my cousin. My cousin Rayelle works for Mitchell Books, one of the other sponsors of the event and so I helped her out with some of her duties, if only to keep from being one of the milling herd. I also got to chat with her a bit.

Sadly, I probably talked with her more today than I have in the past two years. Not that we've all had a falling out or anything. I just tend to talk to that family when something CH related brings us into contact rather than at family gatherings. *shrug*

Ok. Now I'm finished ranting. *deep breath*

Urge to kill... Rising...

I just lost 8 hours of my life that I'll never get back.

Ok. I had a day today that got me rather steamed under the collar, but I have had a few hours since I got home and also eaten and watched The Last Crusade, so my vitriol won't be so bilious, I hope...

I spent my day today attending what I thought would be a conference on leadership with a Christian angle to it all. That's fine. I'd actually declined my invitation to the CH Staff Retreat which occured on Thursday & Friday so someone else who's more into singing and such could attend it while I got some good meat & potatoes learning done today at this leadership conference.

Oh, how I regret that. Heck, if I'd known, I would have just gone and worked my shift instead.

Why am I ticked? Well, the main reason is that rather than the leadership seminar I'd envisioned above, it turns out that I was spending my day attending a good ol' Southern Baptist revival meeting, with all of the attendant rhetoric that entails.

So it essentially was teaching us how to all be good self-righteous pricks.

The sad thing was that it was paid for by and sponsored by, CH. This, on top of the 2-day staff retreat which had just taken place from Thursday until this morning. I mean, had it actually been something useful, I wouldn't have minded, but to have money which could have gone into home renovations, salaries, ANYTHING that would benefit the programs themselves go towards this... Grr...

Anyway, I was about ready to leave after the first session but I didn't. I kept hoping it'd get better. There was a round-table discussion panel that I thought would make up for the 3 hours of old man drivel being spouted at me all morning.


While they did have a few interesting points, it would keep getting close to verging on serious discussion and then swing right back into more self-righteous back-slapping. But when you take into account that the hostess of the day and the moderator of the panel was the lady from 100 Huntley Street, well, go figure.

Now, if the guy who spoke for 30 minutes from 5-5:30 had also spoken all morning, I might have at least felt somewhat charitable towards the day. He was the son of the guy who spoke for 3 hours in the morning but at least he was entertaining and acknowledged that not everything has a pat answer and that there are gray areas. And I must say that Henry Blackaby, the main speaker, did have a few good points and his comment that today's generation of Christians are some of the most biblically illiterate was true. But really, that's about the only thing he said that I agreed 100% on.

Anyway, it was at the Queensway Cathedral and I sat at the very back and had my MP3 player on and was trying to read a Star Wars book, just to stay awake... when i wasn't getting pissed off at the blather.

I mean, I didn't think it was possible to become physically pained by boredom, but I was... sigh.

*deep breath*

Suffice it to say, I am definately going to be stating my displeasure to my program manager and hope that there is some kind of feedback thing I can give about the day... Though I might have calmed the throbbing vein in my forehead down by then.

Now, in case you're curious as to what got me so rankled, here's a taste of the ineffable wisdom imparted today.

The main speaker posed the rhetorical question, 'How do I know when God is speaking to me?'

Now, we've been discussing this at the small group I attend after church most Sundays, and we still haven't come to a complete concensus. I mean, it IS a very personal thing, as what I interpret as God's voice may not be the same as someone else. They might experience it one way and I may experience it another way. On top of that, new Christians keep hearing older Christians stating how they have followed God's direction and voice in certain matters and may wonder exactly what that entails.

What was Herr Blackaby's response to this rhetorical question?

"If you have to ask what God's voice sounds like, maybe you're not a true Christian."

My jaw dropped. That was when I looked back in my program and saw the Southern Baptist connection and the pieces started to fall into place.

I won't even get into the altar call shenanigans :)

Anyway, that's about it for my day at 'the conference'. Time to go play some Siren to corrupt the good teachings placed there today (sigh).

Scary? You bet.

I'm so looking forward to playing Siren. Just look at this blurb about the Japanese ad campaign for it!

"Night. A young girl bangs on a window, desperate for her parents to let her in. The camera moves inside the house. Mum and dad are terrified.

A reverse shows that Daddy's little girl ain't a girl no more: bloodied, streaming eyes, twisted, undead and evil. This commercial was shown on Japanese television networks on November 3rd. Seven complaints later and it was removed.

Welcome to Siren."