July, 2009

Addiction

This might seem strange. My “addiction” has nothing to do with alcohol, drugs, women or food. It’s a game. Not a mind game, not a board game and not really a “video game”, it’s well, by definition, a ‘computer’ game. It’s not something as meaningless as Counter Strike or Command & Conquer or something as ridiculous as The Sims. My addiction is Football Manager 2009.

What is Football Manager 2009? It is this football (soccer) “game” where the player (i.e YOU) takes charge of a football team (as its manager). You deal with everything related to the team – from tactics to transfers to press conferences to player dramas to managerial mind games and professional scouting. It as close as you can get to living every true football fanatic’s dream. I am stuck in.

This game is a platonic simulation of the real world. A world I would love to be a part of but of which I cannot yet, be a part of. So instead, I let myself divulge in a guilty pleasure, which would be all okay if I just left it at that. But this is where the addiction comes in. There are times when I just cannot stop playing it. I am more engrossed in it than I am engrossed in life and it’s as if I have given reins of my emotions to this stupid (not really) yet genius (totally) piece of manifestation (game). I get angry – not when I lose, but when I shouldn’t lose. I get so so angry. Mum gets the worst of it sometimes, which is, yes, scary. Addiction, you see?

I have tried oh so many times to stop playing. I have uninstalled and deleted every possible inch of it from my computer only to scathingly know that another copy of it lies on my external. I have downloaded the best possible tactics (don’t ask me how this is possible – it just is) and the best possible wonderkid shortlists from the world wide web, which, if you haven’t figured yet, have brought me less joy in victory and more pain in defeat, but that shimmering joy has been worth it (not really if you really come to think of it, but hey, I am getting carried away). I have given way too many hours of my life into something I have always wanted to become in real life, but it’s almost like I am letting the virtual experience ruin it. Addiction.

On a complete tangent, you can take this as a super awesome review of a truly genius game. It is so good and so real (at times) that it can literally get you addicted. I know I am not the only one. This game has destroyed marriages and killed jobs. It’s like Adam’s poisonous Apple. Shit, I’m getting biblical. Addiction. Bloody hell.

It’s sad in retrospect and I really need to get it out of my system. Even though it’s not the worst thing to be addicted to (heroin kills folks, remember?), it’s kinda embarrassing. No, but I really hope I could make this game reality, but until then I need to get rid of this stupid (not really) and genius (totally) e-pill.

P.S. Just for the record, I am currently doing pretty well with Birmingham actually, got them promoted and then some European action. But shit, I need to stop. Life’s kinda more important. Oh and Jason, help me out here man!

Movie Overload

So I just got done with work a couple of weeks ago and online summer school a couple of days ago, so freedom feels good. Obviously, there is a ton of other important things I need to do and should be doing, but all that can take a back seat for a couple of days.

We went and saw Public Enemies today. Johnny Depp, Christian Bale and kickass trailer were convicing enough. We didn’t read reviews before hand though. Big mistake. It was shit. Super duper shit. It made “New York” (read post below) look decent. Yeah, it was that bad. Okay, the cinematography was decent, the acting was good (obviously), but the story sucked (yes, there is no better word to describe it). It lacked everything that New York had and New York lacked everything Public Enemies had. Weird. I don’t get it. My true reaction to the movie – why in the world would you make a movie like that? It’s really really friggin’ weak. I was waiting for it to start, waiting for some twist to betwixt us between the twain, but no, nothing.

It was so frustrating/depressing that I had to come back and watch a movie to get over it. So I saw Match Point – a decent movie, but it’s too wrong to like. Didn’t help. So I ended up watching The Hangover instead. Best thing that happened to me today, and probably this entire week. It’s friggin’ hilarious. It’s so damn funny that it’s not even worth reviewing.

This blog should have more than just half-assed movie reviews. I just can’t sum up the courage/time to do that though.

P.S. Ironically, as in with no relation to The Hangover, it was a really good night-out with the guys. Truth y Truth, I tell you.

The Tragedy That Is “New York”

I have never before seen a more mental massacre of a perfectly brilliant concept until I saw the new Bollywood film “New York”. The storyline, the message and concept was strong and arguably genius. Yes, Katrina Kaif is hot and that’s always a positive, but the script was super, super pathetic. The acting wasn’t any better – the best bit was played by the random-est of characters, whose name I have forgotten and which can surprisingly, not be found on the internet with ease. The “slow motion” technique was used way too often and slowed the movie down. Kaif’s Hindi was laughable and she smiled out of context way too much, but she sizzling-ly scwow, so she’s forgiven. That Nitin fellow, who played the lead role, is a really really lousy actor. I don’t know how he has made it big. John Abe showed glimpses of decency but was average overall.

The beauty of all this annoyance is that it’s friggin’ hilarious. Every time something dramatic happened, firstly the damn slow motion thing kicked in and secondly, the most dramatic music imaginable erupted. The expressions were hilarious and drama was often predictable. The script was “deep” at times, or tried to be deep, but most of the friggin’ actors couldn’t pull it off – Irfann was expectantly decent. There were no song/dance sequences in this film. Thankfully, right? Wrong. The film started creating excuses to play songs and the extremely “filmy” montages were way too long. And they kept bringing the same damn song back during moments of drama, much to yes, our annoyance. So anyway, I, along with my great sister, laughed a lot in this film, and admittedly, we were loud and obnoxious. But hey, we were looking of ways to derive pleasure from this movie, and there weren’t many options. My Dad, who is considerably easier to please when it comes to Bollywood, was getting annoyed by our obnoxiousness. He glared at me like he had never before, crunching his teeth until the grinding could be heard. How utterly shameless and childish behavior was this! But, we “grown ups” laughed even louder. It didn’t help our cause and thus began a weird fight – sis and I couldn’t stop laughing, and Mum and Dad couldn’t stop getting angrier. They told us that we should have walked out of the “damn theatre” if we hated it so much. But we were enjoying the annoyance way too much to leave. Parents, I tell you :).

Fine, I am not a Bollywood fan. If a Hindi movie is bad, I will kill it. But if it’s good, I will and have in the past, shown pride and honor. (Want proof? Here.) Most Bollywood-lovers enjoyed this movie, especially since it had almost been two months since the Indian Film Industry had come out with anything. It was better than the worst but lousy none the less. A waste of money? No not entirely – it was a weirdly memorable family day. Anyway here’s to more stories like this, but less scripts, acting and direction like this. Here’s to more Taare Zameen Pars and Dil Chahta Hais. Rock On – metaphorically, literally, and relational-ly.

P.S. Just for the record, I know this “review” is a couple of weeks too late. But opinion is opinion.

Facebook Chat LIMIT?

Dear Facebook,

I am completely bamboozled right now. I was on your Facebook Chat a few minutes ago, talking to people and catching up on life among other things. Fine, I was talking to quite a few people for a quite a while. However, like a friggin’ facebolt from the blue, this is what you slapped on my screen:

fb-message

“You have exceeded the limit for sending chat messages!
You are temporarily blocked from sending chat messages. Block times may vary depending on the feature and scale of abuse. Blocks cannot be lifted.

Misuse of Facebook’s features may result in your account being disabled.”

With all due respect, WHAT THE $%!@? Do you “think” I’m spamming people? Oh, are y’all guessing? What the hell do you think I’m trying to do? And you might “block” me for overusing your features? Don’t get me wrong, you are pretty cool and super handy, but this is slightly messed up. FB Chat has always had issues, but this one’s kinda extreme. Yes, it’s to prevent spamming and all, but you got to do better than that.

Look, you guys are doing an awesome job, but you have got to sort this FB Chat issue out. Facebook Chat is super convenient, but get it right, will you? Google and MSN are pretty smooth. So if they can do it, you should too, right? Ooh, did I touch a nerve there? Apologies. I am just voicing my concerns. Please don’t block me.

Sincerely,

A

P.S. Please print and keep, k?