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    <Was there an accident?>
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< Piro >

news is good for you

"your perception does count"

Sunday - November 5, 2006

[Piro] - 15:09:00 - [link here]

Over the years, I've been pretty circumspect about the kinds of opinions i give in my rants. Rarely do i flame or lambaste others, aside from the occasional chiding for things i feel strongly about (like the whole Chibi Vampire thing) or defending myself against what i feel are inaccurate accusations (like my last rant). I pour a lot of myself into this comic and the world of Megatokyo, so it's pretty hard to not have some of my personal opinions or views find their way in. No matter how objective I try to be I have my own perception of the world and my work and words will always reflect that. However, I always keep in mind that other people may have different perceptions than I do. While I may not agree with, support or understand those perceptions, i at least try to understand and respect them the best I can. It is something i wish was a little more common in this world.

I've often been tempted to be more vocal about how i feel about about many of the things going on in the world today. Like many of you, i have some strong opinions, but i've always felt that this was not the place voice them. My goal with this comic is to entertain you, to make you laugh, cry, think, feel... I'm not of the belief that because i give you something good, you should listen to what i say (a sadly too common practice in the world). Even when i have voiced (what i considered) respectful opinions on something, I get emails from people telling me that they come here to read a comic not hear about my views. A part of me does bristle at the audacity some people have, that i should know my place, do the comic, shut up and keep my opinions to myself. They refuse to give me the courtesy of allowing me to speak my mind openly. It is not for these people that i am circumspect. It is out of respect for those readers might not agree with me but would listen to me. You don't come here to find yourself at odds with my feelings about something that may be important to you. It is out of respect for you that the main focus of this site will always be the comic, no matter how strongly i feel about something.

I don't feel like the following violates this respect. Yes, it is about politics. Yes it is about the election that will be held here in the United States on Tuesday, November 7th. No, i'm not going to tell you how to vote, or try to encourage you to vote one way or another. I simply ask that you vote.

I've heard just about every argument there is about why people shouldn't vote. My vote has no impact on anything, I don't like any of the candidates, i don't know who to vote for, i don't understand what is going on, i don't have time, It's not like it really matters, I'm protesting the political system by staying home... there are tons of them. Of course it is your choice, but you should think carefully about this before you decide not to participate.

Many elections across the country this year are very close. The impact of these elections will have major effects on the balance of power in the United States and will have a serious impact on its future direction. These things do effect you, they effect all of us - including those of your fellow MT readers who don't live in this country. They can't vote here. You can.

Even if you feel like your vote wont help the people or ideas you support, not voting does nothing but help people and ideas you may not support. It's not easy figuring out who best 'represents' you, especially these days, but you should try to educate yourself. If you can read the archives of a webcomic like this, you can hit a news site and browse for news about your candidates and get a reasonable feel for the choices you are being asked to make. Don't vote for someone because someone tells you to, because you just 'don't know' and you need an opinion. Make your own decisions.

There are those who argue that many people shouldn't vote because they don't understand what they are voting for. They say that encouraging people to vote only helps one group or another. Elections unfortunately are not a real representation of what the majority of people in this country feel... not with over half of the population not voting. It has become a game in which the side that is most successful in getting 'their' people out to vote wins.

That's pretty sad.

Don't just blow voting off like its a game you just aren't interested in playing. You are in the game, whether you like it or not. Not voting makes you an Non Player Character. Do you REALLY want to be a NPC, letting others decide what happens in the game?

Think about it before you skip on voting.

If you have any problems, issues, complaints or questions about voting, you can call the MyVote Election hotline at 1-866-MyVote1. Do some research. Google and news sites are your friend.

Thanks for reading.

< Dom >



Thursday - October 26, 2006

[Dom] - 10:00:00 - [link here]

So my quarterlife crisis is mostly past, and by "it's past" I mean "I mostly forgot about it."

I mean, so many small, weird things have happened to me over the past few weeks.

Saturday was especially strange, as I went straight from a college football game to a game of Dungeons and Dragons. I'm not quite certain, but I do believe that this is the first time in human history that particular sentence has been written.

Things got weirder in the middle of it, though - I got a call from Suberunker telling me that among the Xbox 360 achievements for Gears of War is a pair of little gems called "Dom-curious" and "I can't quit you Dom."


Meanwhile, I've been getting in little packages of Amazon lovin' (the online store, not the series of porno flicks that I'm sure exists) over the past week or two, which has consisted of DVDs and CDs by which I can thoroughly confuse Amazon's recommendation. Take a look:

* 1 of: Kannazuki No Miko, Vol. 3 - Destiny Eclipsed (Limited Edition)
* 1 of: Over the Hedge (Widescreen Edition)
* 1 of: Catch-22
* 1 of: Birth of the Cool [Original recording reissued] [Original recording remastered]
* 1 of: Run-D.M.C. - Greatest Hits
* 1 of: Hot Shots!
* 1 of: Saturday Night Live - The Best of Phil Hartman
* 1 of: Bottle Rocket
* 1 of: Jackie Chan's Who Am I?
* 1 of: The Tick Vs. Season One
* 1 of: My Man Godfrey (Colorized / Black and White)
* 1 of: The Naked Gun - From the Files of Police Squad!
* 1 of: Straight Outta Lynwood
* 1 of: Earth Wind & Fire: Greatest Hits
* 1 of: The Cannonball Run

Combined with previous purchases of miscellany and the addition of a copy of From Eroica with Love for a friend of mine, Amazon has NO idea what to do with me. Page 1 of my recommendations page is full of anime, page 2 is full of gay porn (though after I deleted From Eroica with Love from my history it disappeared, thankfully), page 3 is old black and white horror flicks, and on page 6 I got a recommendation for zither music. I love confusing automated systems.

Let's see what else is going down...

Ah yes, I'm at another crossroads in my life - with my DVR coming in, I am now at two remote controls, and I'm wondering if I should take the plunge and become one of Those People With Three Remote Controls.

What makes this a difficult choice for me is cost vs. usage - my TV exists for two primary purposes: watching sports on TV and playing video games. Yet it only has one component video input.

Well, that's not true, it has two component video inputs, but one of them has no RCA audio in, instead demanding coax digital audio. But my DVR only came with RCA audio in, while my Xbox 360 uses optical audio (I still feel funny writing that). So I have to choose now - do I buy a switchbox for my component video feeds, or do I just take the plunge and buy a receiver, complete with its third remote control and gargantuan presence?

I mean, should I want to get a DVD player, I'll definitely want component video on that - I've gotten used to a certain standard of viewing. But I'm not really an audio freak, and I don't even know if I have room for the subwoofer, much less a full suite of 5.1 speakers. Meanwhile, my home theater advisor, Ed, has somehow has found a way to fit all of this in a room with a dog, two cats, countless toys and comic books, and a metric assload of consoles. I envy his space management, though it is somewhat hard to find seating for more than 4 in that room.

So I'm heading out today and trying to figure out what I want to do with my TV and my home theater - do I go whole hog and actually make it a home theater, or do I continue to be OK with a flat-screen HDTV playing my Xbox 360?

Meanwhile, I'm trying to figure out what I want to do this New Year's during my Japan trip. Thanks to Asmodeus, I think I'll be going to Comike and sneaking into the show two hours early, so there's no reason not to go to that - but for example, Cal has a significant chance to make it to the Rose Bowl this year, something they haven't done in almost 50 years. I'm trying not to put the cart before the horse here, since there are 4 games to go and one of them is against UCLA, but it's something I have to think about - I'll be in Japan between December 27 and January 7, but it wouldn't cost TOO much to buy a ticket back to America just for one glorious New Year's Day... right?

And what about the other way around? I've made it my goal to make it to one Tomoyasu Hotei concert before he passes his rockin' prime (I already missed the boat on AC/DC and the Stones, for example) and now I find out from mixi that he's going to have a concert with Brian Setzer at the famed Budokan. But it's on the 20th, two weeks after I get back from Japan--should I buy a ticket BACK and go there for one weekend concert?

Ah well. I'll figure it out in time. I have plenty of time for this and everything else...


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