Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘gratitude’

So, let’s see… there are the Oscars (Academy Awards), Emmys (I worked extensively on Lemmings, a short film that got a student Emmy a few years back), Peabodys and Nobels.  Before today, though, there were no Teshes.

I hereby present the first not-quite-annual-really-whenever-I-feel-so-inclined Tesh awards for fine bloggery and upstanding personality.

Yup, this is another story of how I took a meme that someone tagged me with and bent it to my own slightly less than nefarious designs.

The parties at fault here would be Ysharros and Pete, a fine pair of writers who alternate between reading my mind and making me wonder what they were thinking.  (In the best possible way, of course; that’s merely a comment on the sometimes bewildering shifts between topics I wholly agree with, and those that I never would have thought of, but am happy to read.)

Apparently, I’m supposed to thank my taggers (thanks, you two!), and then list others who I think do a great job, and then tell others to do the same.  These things could run the risk of going the Oscar “navel-gazing-pat-yourself-on-the-back” route, but I’m taking this as an opportunity to thank some people and offer some recommendations for fine reading.  (And plug my new Merc page, which uses the logo design below for some merchandising.  Yay for commercial tie-ins!)

First off, there is the basic level of the Tesh awards (Teshes), which is merely the Tesh Seal of Approval.

Tesh Seal of Approval

Tesh Seal of Approval

If you’re on the blogroll over there, you get this award.  You wouldn’t be there if I didn’t like your work.

A step above and beyond that, though, nets the coveted Golden Tesh award.

Golden Tesh

Golden Tesh

These are hereby awarded to the following authors for various reasons:

Big Bear Butt, Phaelia, Wolfshead and Muckbeast for the inspiration to start blogging in the first place.  BBB really started it all, expressing appreciation for a bit of moral support I offered some time ago in a comment thread.  Phaelia also engcouraged me to write, and Wolfshead and Muckbeast share an irrereverent critical take on the MMO genre that has prompted many of the thoughts that I’ve expounded on hereabouts.  We’re all coming from different directions, but without these four especially, I’d probably not have even bothered with this blog thing in the first place.

Chris and Capn’ John for being early adopters, as well as their continued good humor and kindred thoughts.  These are the guys I’d have a blast playing volleyball with… even if they can’t play (I don’t know if they can, actually, so it’s the thought that counts).  That’s high praise, actually, for those who don’t realize it from how… pithy it looks.  These are the guys that I count as friends, or at least kindred spirits… and that’s not something I do lightly.

Big Red Kitty and Phaelia for their recent rededication to their families, at the cost of their blog.  They have give much to those in the WoW blog world, (and WoW gave back to Phaelia in a great way), and their works will be appreciated.  Even more than that, though, I heartily applaud their respective choices to put family first, and I wish them very, very well.

Tipa and Saylah for their tireless championing of Wizard 101, and their challenges to the DIKU establishment.  Also, it’s always a pleasure reading their work, on whatever subject.  (Tipa’s comics are a great bonus, too.)

Ysharros and Wiqd for prompting the most interesting thoughts that have changed my own personal game design projects.  Alpha Hex is only the start, and if it works, well… there’s more to do.

So yeah… apparently I’m supposed to also tag others to do the same sort of thing, but that’s never been my strong point.  I’m an evasive Explorer, not a Hunter-Killer.  If this sort of thing appeals to you, by all means take it and run with it.

Oh, and there’s a third thing… I’m supposed to write ten honest and/or interesting things about myself.  Again, I’m evasive, so I’ll just point out that I’ve probably written at least that many things over the last few months here on this blog.  For those latecomers, though, here’s a cookie crumb:

I’m a technical artist in the game industry by trade, and my Bachelor’s degree is in Computer Animation (Pixar-level stuff).  I could be working for Rhythm and Hues (they wanted me for the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe movie) and maybe even Pixar (they love my alma mater) by now, but I will not live in California.  So, I work in games at small local studios close to my extended family.  I’m an artist, scientist, writer and teacher.  Maybe one of these days, I’ll find out how to get paid for all of them at the same time.  In the meantime, I just write and think about game design, which I find is a bit of a mishmash of all of them.  Renaissance thinking makes me happy, and finding ways to express and utilize all of my interests makes me happier.

My family is the most important thing in the world to me, starting with my lovely and wonderful wife, two beloved children, and extending to my extended family.  They are why I work where I do, and why I work as hard as I do.

…and ultimately, it’s thinking of them that made this post even relevant.  See, a week and a half ago, I taught a bit in church about “Finding Joy in the Journey“, and was reminded once again just how important it is to connect with the people you love and respect.  I quote from that article:

“Send that note to the friend you’ve been neglecting; give your child a hug; give your parents a hug; say “I love you” more; always express your thanks. Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved. Friends move away, children grow up, loved ones pass on. It’s so easy to take others for granted, until that day when they’re gone from our lives and we are left with feelings of “what if” and “if only.” Said author Harriet Beecher Stowe, “The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.”

If you care about someone enough to let them know, if wish to offer gratitude, if you feel any impulse whatsoever to offer a bit of kindness, do so.  In a world sometimes gone mad, it’s the little kindnesses that will keep people alive and well.

Thanks, all, for stopping by, and for your kind and thoughtful comments around here.  May your lives be a bit brighter every day, and may you find ways to share that light.  Even if you have to put your tongue in your cheek for a bit, or dance around the “sentimental stuff”, the kindness will come through, and we can all use a bit lot more of that.

Read Full Post »

I don’t like cars.  The proposed bailout of the big three car manufacturers is utterly repugnant to me as a taxpayer, a consumer, a technologist, and simply because I think cars are a waste.  To be fair, I like what cars can do, as far as transporting people and stuff relatively quickly and safely… my opposition is rooted in what I see as wasted potential and extortionist costs.

Planned obsolescence is a marketing strategy that attempts to force consumers to buy more stuff, specifically to replace stuff they already had.  It’s at the heart of why I loathe the car industry, and cars as a product of their waste.

Cars are made of thousands of parts, and several of those are designed specifically to decay and break.  That’s how the repair industry stays afloat, and why new cars keep getting built.  (Conspicuous consumption can do only so much.)  The blasted things are built to fail.  We have materials technology capable of building cars that run clean, cheap, safely and for decades, but that would cost the manufacturers in the long run, so they don’t make them.  The American Way is “consume and discard”… a mentality that is paying impressive dividends lately.

Software is similar, with some companies going so far as to intentionally omit backwards compatibility, despite being very easy to incorporate.  It’s been argued before that the game industry is as shallow as it is because we don’t learn from our mistakes.  We can’t, since games more than a few years old aren’t playable on new machines, and old machines break and can’t be fixed or replaced easily.  We’re stuck in a treadmill of our own design, churning out happy little reruns for zombie lemming gamers. *coughEAcough*

What about people?

We certainly don’t last forever.  We decay, fall apart, run down.  (I hate dentistry, too, but that’s another rant.)  But who is the consumer that replaces us, and with what?  (No tangents here on trophy spouses, nope, not here.)  Is God consuming us and discarding us when He’s done with the experiment?  Hmm… I think not.  Rather, I think that we are given time on this world to accomplish certain things, and to learn certain things.  In a way, we are our own consumer in that context.  We are given limited time so that we can appreciate choices and consequences, and learn how to think and decide.  We have to learn to sieze the day and act, rather than be acted upon.  We’re literally on the clock.

So how do we spend our precious, limited time, and what do we get out of it?

Hmm…

Appreciate what you have, because it may be gone tomorrow.  Cherish your time, and be grateful for your possessions.  Reduce, reuse, recycle, because you cannot keep consuming without producing something of value to offset it.  Above all, let those you love know that they are valuable to you, even if it’s just by giving them your time.  We’ve heard this before.  It’s still good advice.  That’s why we keep hearing it.

It feels good to turn something as repugnant as a concept borne in greed to the light side, even I had to run a tangent to get there.  I know, bad little consumer lemming.

*grin*

Read Full Post »