Okay, so it took a little longer than I thought to get back into the mood to write. I'm sorry. But with that out of the way, I'd like to poke at my mailbox, which I'm finally starting to read again.
The most surprising mail I've gotten in the last few months was from Christopher Maden, who's running for the California Assembly. He's going up against Leland Yee, and take a look at this:
You have probably heard by now that California Assemblyman Leland Yee(D-SF) is introducing legislation to add violent video games to thedefinition of "harmful matter", which currently is only prurient sexualmatter under state law. This would make it a crime to sell them to minors.
I happen to be in a position to fight the issue, as his opponent forAssembly next year.
Below is the text of a handout I gave to the press at his press conferencethis morning. His staff asserted that, despite the ESRB system (thanks forFriday's strip, Greg), 70% of stores will sell M-rated titles to minors.
What is your anecdotal experience? Some of you are younger adults; do youget carded? I am not much of a gamer myself (though I greatly enjoy allyour strips, which is why you have the dubious honor of receiving thise-mail). How easy do you think it really is for a youngster to buyinappropriate games? Do parents have the tools they need to monitor theirchildren's consumption of entertainment software?
What do your readers think?
What do my readers think, indeed? Check out Chris Maden's handout on Yee's proposed video game ban here, and if you wish, contact him via the address found there. It's an interesting issue, to say the least.
In a lighter note, I got a mail from John Balbach, an assistant professor of physics at GWU, after my Superstition rant. He had this to say:
I was recently at a conference of nuclear magnetic resonance scientists, atwhich a dozen or so of us were sitting around a table drinking beer andswapping lies. Topics of discussion were wide ranging, and at one point wehit upon a favorite of scientists: the rise of superstitious behavior insociety. People were bemoaning the continued presence of horoscopes besidethe funny pages of the newspaper, using crystals to better health, andother such activities. All of the people at the table were experimentalscientists, so I asked if any of them did not have some sort of ritual orsuperstitious behavior that they rigidly adhered to in their labs becauseotherwise the equipment would inexplicably fail to work. None were able tosay that they did not, and every single person at that table had a Ph.D. ineither physics or chemistry.
Superstition is everywhere.
And that was the highlight of that week. It's good to know that people who've spent decades unlocking the secrets of creation still knock on wood to make themselves feel better. Thanks, John.
The nice girls at Broccoli sent me a very nice Christmas card, which is appreciated, and then pointed me at something I didn't notice before--Galaxy Angel, which I've avoided because it was distilled, bottled cuteness, is written by Mizuno Ryou, who also wrote Mahou Senshi Riui and Record of Lodoss War, two of my favorite anime fantasy stories. So I have to check that out when it comes out next year.
And in oop-ack news, I've been talking back and forth with my cosplaying twin Henry Lee, and he's gearing up to hold a MegaTokyo cosplay contest through Oop-ack and American Cosplay Paradise. Fred and I are assembling swag for prizes, and I've managed to wrangle out a promise from Fred that he'll give some original sketches to the cosplayers who win--so if you're interested, check this space for more info soon. I don't have an e-mail from him to post for more information, but I do have a picture of him molesting a traffic cone, does that count?
Anyway, with that, I'm out. Back later with a Fred-like introspection on writing... I think.