Friday, March 23, 2007

Elitists and Proles, or Changes in the works...

I don't ever want to be like you.

I don't ever want to buy my clothes from a high-end retailer. I don't want to drive. I don't want a home entertainment system, surround sound or Blu-ray. I don't even want a TV. I don't want the latest toys. I don't want an electronic leash like a cellphone or Blackberry. I don't want a condo. I don't want Ikea. I don't want to shop at a big-box retail giant.

I don't want to be a couch potato. I don't want to sit on my ass, staring at a television or computer screen for hours. I don't want to live my life online. I don't want to chat for hours on MSN. I don't want YouTube. I don't want your online social networks. I don't want to "share" files, music, or pictures.


I realized last night (03/22/07), after half a bottle of navy rum and a few hours of screaming along with my favourite CDs, that I need to make a few changes in my life. I'm trapped in an endless cycle of debt and depression. Of computer parts and eBay. Of video games I never play and music I rarely hear. Of self-improvement and self-destruction. Of poor diet and worse health. Of creativity and broken deadlines. Of caffeine and sugar. And of course, of Conceit and Sociopathy.

In my half-drunken state last night, I told myself to get my act together. "How?", I asked, "What should I do?", to which I replied "Sheejay, wat you gotta do is get rid of all yer ol' computer crap, shell it all on eeebay... mebbe keep the onesh you really like, and f*cking do shomethin' with 'em..."

"Like what, ashhole?", I asked, mystified. "You alwaysh act like you f*cking know everything..."

"Now calm down, matey:, I told myself, "You jus' gotta calm down. Wat I'm gettin' at in my roundabout way ish to get rid of all the onesh you don't use, dat you bought to pissh around wit' but never really used. And get ridda da onesh dat are too exshpenshive to upgrade an' sell 'em for big bucksh to some nerd"

Astonished at my own genius, I replied, "Sheejay, man, you're a f*cking geniush! Lemme get you a drink!"

The rest of the evening is a blur, somehow I ended up with a black eye and my shoes were on the wrong feet. Nevertheless, I was on to something. I need to make a number of lifestyle changes, and selling off the computers I don't (and likely won't) use is a good start. That way, I'll never feel the urge to upgrade them, or spend money on other frivolous hardware & software. But that's just a start.

Next on the chopping block will be most of my video game collection...


The intro rant was originally directed at a particular group of people who frequent a couple of the web forums I'm on, but once I got going, it turned into an attack on society itself.

In my drunken evening of defiance and self-reflection, I realized while the bulk of my "problems" are financial in nature, I also need to make changes in my personal life as well. I'm never going to be a condo-livin' well-to-do member of the elite. My attempts at being a dapper, sophisticated bon vivant have been laughable at best. I just can't hide all the "North End" in me... that said, I'm also not a low-brow, poorly educated labourer, and my attempts at humility have been equally laughable. I just can't hide my intellect no matter how hard I try. What's left? A Costco-shopping, TV-ingesting, SUV-driving, Middle-class suburbanite with 1.5 obese kids? I'll never let that happen. So where does that leave me?

After all these years, I'm still a misfit with a disdain for both our materialistic society and this culture of convenience. And that'll never change. So why not channel that disdain into something positive? Something creative? Or something truly nasty?

At any rate, whether good or bad, I've decided to take up writing again.

Friday, March 16, 2007

First steps towards the Retrochallenge

I've started preparing for the Retrochallenge!

I've decided upon Vier as my "main" retrochallenge system, but I can't seem to decide on a tag-team partner for him...

Vier's partner will be a Powerbook, to be sure. I just need to figure out which one. I have three 68K Powerbooks to choose from, with a possible fourth 'book (a Duo 210) from eBay on which I'm bidding.

I have a flaky Powerbook 145b, an equally flaky Powerbook 170, and my Powerbook 540c (which I've nicknamed Sayaka, after Sayaka Yumi from Mazinger-Z).

Originally, I wanted to use Sayaka, however she'll be the most expensive to upgrade. I need to pick up a battery and a PRAM battery (total cost: $150 USD) in order to use her on the go. Not exactly cheap.

The 145b and 170 are decent options. Both would require me to pick up an AC adapter, PRAM battery and power battery, which would likely cost me around $100 USD. Again, not cheap.

The Duo 210 would be an attractive option, but also expensive. I'd need to track down a battery, likely a PRAM battery, a DuoDock and/or external Duo floppy drive. Not cheap, but the Duo's tiny size makes for easier portability, which would be well worth the cost.

I'm still not sure what I'm going to do, but I will have made a decision around this time tomorrow.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

The 68K Mac's place in the "modern world"

Stubborn determination, or exercise in masochism? Perhaps a hobby taken to a ludicrous extreme?

[*picture to follow*]

Whatever the explanation, I find myself at the keyboard of my 25MHz Macintosh LC475 (aka "Vier"), slowly yet happily plugging away on Blogger. Experiencing Web 2.0 as no one should.

I don't know why I do it. I have this insatiable need to push "Vier" to the brink, to wring every ounce of performance I can from the machine. And you know, I've never been disappointed! Vier is robust, and very resilient, and has handled everything I've thrown at it and come back wanting more. Which drives me to find new, more modern challenges...

I've been a member (recruit?) of the 68K Mac Liberation Army for about a year now. I enjoy reading the forums, and in that year I've learned a lot about the hardware and applications. It was through the 68KMLA that I learned about the Retrochallenge.

I won't go into detail about the Retrochallenge (look it up!), but members of the 68KMLA's Retrochallenge forum have inspired me. I absolutely HAVE to do something creative with Vier, but what?

As usual, the answer was staring me in the face all along... Regular Podcast! I've been wanting to do a "low end" podcast for a year now, but never really followed through with it. Now that I've been suitably inspired, it should prove to be a challenge both in terms of writing AND production. Can I create interesting and entertaining content consistantly? Can I produce it exclusively on Vier?

Sure. But will it be enough to satisfy me? Or will I put Vier through the grinder on an even bigger project after that?