The Apathy of Laziness

Huh, that sounds like a book title.

Anyway, I’m trying to think of something to write for these things (like really, I’m not interesting, why) and I got to thinking about my life. Which is entirely uninteresting. But, it does contain one fact: I’m lazy.

Sometimes, it’s due to me forgetting to take my Adderall. I don’t get that kick-start of motivation, or I don’t take the second dose and kind of wither away into nonfocused tiredness. I just sit and do mindless things – playing games on my phone, mostly – for hours. I know that I need to get up and go do something, but I look at the clock, mentally shrug, and think, “I’ve got time.”

Other times, it’s caused by procrastination. Even medicated, I look at a clock and think the same thing. I fully intend to do the thing, but time goes by and suddenly it’s too late to do the thing. That’s how laundry piles up, dishes sit, and cats go unfed. Though I make sure to take care of my cats! And, if I don’t, I have a wonderful other half to watch out for them. It does make me question how good of a human baby parent I’d be, though. Ack.

The rest of the time, it’s just because I simply do not want to do the thing. I don’t want to wash the dishes that have piled up and wouldn’t have been so bad if only I’d done it before. The cat litter boxes are so bad that I really don’t want to dig out the chunks – if I owned the property I lived in, I’d just dump them out back and start fresh. Logically, I know that I NEED to do the thing. I try to work up the motivation to do the thing. Most of the time, I fail because of the other part of the title of this article: apathy.

When I’m in the depths of my laziness, I’m simply too lazy to care. It could be exhaustion, or it could be childhood defenses come to rise (you can’t be hurt if you don’t allow yourself to feel!). Whatever the case, at my worse, I simply don’t care enough to do anything, even eat or drink. Did that cause my dehydration that made me go to the hospital? Or was is overwork that caused me to forget to eat and drink? Whatever the case, I’ll have to remind myself, “Hey, you haven’t eaten since nine this morning and it’s four in the afternoon. You might wanna get a nibble.”

I don’t know what the end goal here is. Maybe I’m just trying to sum up my own feelings so they make sense to me. I’m certainly not going to use this as an excuse – as my favorite fanfic author says, “There are reasons, but no excuses.” I don’t want this to excuse my laziness and let it continue. I want this to serve as a reminder so that maybe I can get a kick up the ass and actually do stuff.

Maybe I’ll go play tennis – well, hit the ball at said other half and watch it go out of bounds, or get the swing-and-a-miss treatment, and then wait for it to come back. Then I miss it, and the cycle continues. Lack of exercise can cause lethargy, right? Right?

Ah, who am I kidding.

Welp

Looks like my previous blog was a bit too soon. It turns out that there’s only so long a person can be yelled at for doing their job before they snap. My breaking point was last Friday, June 9, when I got called back to my department and yelled at for leaving it unattended to do a pick up order. Keep in mind this is common practice, as there’s not really anyone I can call to watch if there’s no one scheduled for the surrounding departments.

I got fed up and, when asked if I worked Saturday, informed them I wouldn’t be. I left my vest and turned in the keys, cleaned out my locker, and walked out. Yes, I was upset and incredulous with myself, and yes, it will be more difficult to pay our bills.

However. The peace of mind I have now – no more working seven days each week! No more stress from a company that doesn’t care about me! – has more than made up for the lack of finances. I know that, with careful budgeting and spending, we’ll be able to manage. It will take self-control and discipline, but we will succeed. I won’t let Walmart have the last laugh.

And… well, how satisfying does it feel to know that I can get my revenge from beyond the grave, so to speak? 11 years with a company gives people a certain… shall we say, repertoire of knowledge concerning practices that are against company policy or downright illegal. To answer the first question, it feels quite satisfying to know that I can get people fired.

Yes, I know it’s petty, but I’m angry. Livid. Infuriated that I felt like I had to quit to get some respite. Before, I feared retaliation. I have no such concerns now.

On the plus side, I have a lot more time on my hands now! I can work on Corinne and Robbie’s story. I can work on Trust’s sequel. Maybe I can do more around the house, even. Wouldn’t that be nice?

Belated updates, whoo

It’s been ages, I know, but I have a good excuse this time.

In addition to being an overworked and underpaid Walmart Associate, I am now a reporter! The Pointe Coupee Banner thinks my writing is good enough to write articles for them, and I’ve been doing it for the past nine or ten months.

Let me tell you, though, writing nonfiction articles is a much different beast from writing fiction. With fiction, if I don’t know the exact circumstances behind something, I can fudge the details under the guise of creative license.

With a newspaper, and especially the official journal of the parish, the details matter. If you’re not sure of the truth, it can’t be printed, it’s that simple. The attention to detail – who, what, where – can mean the difference between an article and an opinion piece. I can’t speculate to make the story more interesting. I can only work with the facts, no matter how bare or uninteresting they are.

All I can do to make my articles interesting is to have a good writing style. Hopefully, the positive responses I’ve received from the articles I’ve written are an indication that my style is good enough to keep people reading. I now have people requesting me, specifically, to write their articles. How strange is that?

Decades from now, people may look into the archives and see what I’ve written. People may clip my articles for keepsakes. It’s… daunting and terrifying. Every author wants to have their writing read in the years to come. Before, it was an abstract concept. Now I have that reality in front of me and I wonder if I’m good enough to deserve that.

There’s no point in wondering, or having doubts. All I can do is keep writing.

Observations In Gaming

I got a guy to like me yesterday. 

We were doing the usual things and I wanted him to really like me. I heard good stuff happens if you get people to like you. Getting his affection was happening too slow, so I did something I normally wouldn’t.

I drugged him.

After the drugging his affection for me increased exponentially. We even had a nice little chat. He didn’t seem to mind being drugged, which made my guilt even worse. 

This guy’s name is Jude Mathis. He’s a character in Tales of Xillia and its sequel. It was in the sequel that the drugging happened. I gave him friendship potions and it didn’t even seem to bother him. It bothered me a lot, though. I realized something about myself: I think about the most minor details of games far too much. I found myself thinking about this thing that sounds so simple, but in practice has horrifying consequences.

I focused my attention on Jude for a simple reason: He’s cute, and I wouldn’t mind seeing him and Xillia 2’s protagonist rolling around somewhere, preferably without clothing. Most people will get squicked out by that, I know, but we all like what we like. After drugging Jude, I couldn’t help but wonder: what if I’d used those friendship potions on female party member Leia? Or Milla? How would that have sounded, then? 

Games that have a mechanic that let you drug your party members into liking you seem innocent enough. In most cases, you do something genuinely nice for that character. Pokemon lets you massage your pokemon once per day, which is a nice thing to do. It provides a valid reason for your pokemon to gain affection for you. Star Wars: The Old Republic allowed you to buy your companions gifts to win their affection. 

Those are all okay. You’re doing something nice for that character, so it stands to reason that they’d like you more for it. 

It was different with Jude, though. As I used those potions, I imagined the ways in which Ludger was getting Jude to drink them. Perhaps it was mixed in with another drink. Maybe they’re actually pretty good drinks in their own right and Jude didn’t mind drinking them on his own.

What if Ludger was forcing those potions down Jude’s throat?

Affection from a potion, not from an act of kindness, has that sort of vibe. It feels all kinds of date-rapey and not very honest. I wish this system had been implemented in a way that didn’t drag out these sorts of impressions. After the sixth potion, Jude initiated a private skit with Ludger (aka me, the player) and told me how much he was growing to appreciate me. I wish I could take those potions back. That convo made me feel even worse.

Next playthrough, if my attention span holds out, I’m going drug-free. Those friendship potions are going into a salesperson’s inventory (might as well get some gald for that hefty debt the game throws at you, am I right?) I’ll win Jude’s affection the hard way, by agreeing with him, fighting at his side, and making sure monsters don’t mess up his pretty face.

Canon crossovers are go!

I finally finished the Final Fantasy XIV Lightning quests. Risa looks so good in cosplay! It’s a pity that the stats on the gear are kind of meh, but hey, can’t have everything, right? Also, I have a riddle! When is a boomerang also a book?

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See the answer, above. Apparently, the boomerang folds out and then upwards, and the pages are projected. Pretty nifty, huh? And hey, since I can insert pictures now, let’s have a cosplaying picture.

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Or, y’know, two pics. That’s Risa, the main character of Trust, as recreated in Final Fantasy XIV. This is a good look for her :3

Anyway, the title of this post is “canon crossovers”, so let’s talk about why. In Final Fantasy XIV, Risa got this outfit because Lightning (the star of Final Fantasy XIII) wound up in Eorzea. The player was tasked with helping her defeat a ton of different beasts throughout the whole game, getting a piece of her outfit at a time. There’s no explanation really given for why Lightning was in Eorzea. After killing the beasts, Lightning would surmise that it might have been a god that dragged her there.

Now here’s where the “canon” part comes in.

When you receive the final quest to help Lightning and get the last part of the outfit, the NPC will ramble on a little bit about meeting Lightning. She’ll also say that she gave Lightning a Miqo’te outfit, because why not? Maybe there was a legitimate reason for mentioning it, but I don’t really remember it. At the end of the quest, Lightning will comment that she’s not likely to remember her time in Eorzea, before vanishing in a flash of light.

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Even though Lightning is in her outfit from Final Fantasy XIII, her words throughout the game hint that she’s already lived through the plot of that game. There’s a bit of time where she could have been sent to Eorzea by Etro before the start of XIII-2, but it’s doubtful. Lightning, in the first part of the quest line, claims that the last thing she remembered was sleeping. She was sleeping in the end of XIII-2. It’s likely that Bhunivelze woke her at that time. There’s no real way to account for the time that passed between Lightning waking up from her throne and her appearance at the end of XIII-2. Therefore, it’s likely that, if this IS canon, this is the time period in which Bhunivelze sent her to Erozea.

Accounting for the change of clothes, Bhunivelze is a god. It’s likely that he put Lightning back in her old clothes. This also means that he can directly affect items in her possession – including a Miqo’te outfit.

Now, on to Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII. The Miqo’te dress is available in this game by completing a very simple sidequest. After completing this sidequest and getting the outfit, Hope pops on the comm and comments that the Miqo’te are said to inhabit a “mythical land” called Eorzea. However, it’s been said in this game many times that Hope knows things that he shouldn’t know. He says that it might have been Bhunivelze that put this knowledge in his head – but why would Bhunivelze put the knowledge of Eorzea and, specifically, the Miqo’te, in his head?

My guess is that, as far as the timelines are concerned, Lightning’s trip to Eorzea is canon, and Hope knew about it. However, since Lightning doesn’t remember the trip, he has to say that Eorzea is mythical. Bhunivelze took the Miqo’te dress and put it in a place where Lightning could get it, but in a way that was easy to explain away. How confusing would it be to wake up with an outfit you don’t remember, right?

This is just my interpretation of events in both games, mind. Could just be a continuity nod to the crossover event without canonizing it completely. Who knows?

 

Time for randomness

I made a promise that I would try to update this more frequently. This is me trying to keep that promise. I just don’t know what the heck to talk about. So, let’s go down the checklist.

Life? Work, work, work. I like the pay I’m getting in the position I’m in, but I’ve let myself get on a crappy schedule so it feels like I can’t get anything done besides work! I have a week off coming up, though, and I have big, geek-filled plans.

Gaming? Haven’t been doing much of it. Mostly been using my nifty PS4 for netflix, for cripe’s sake. When Final Fantasy XIV comes out, though, I’ll be getting a hell of a lot of use out of it. Speaking of, I need to see about getting into the beta.

Writing? I’m working on something for Valentine’s, but I don’t know if it’ll be done by then. Wish me luck! My new year’s resolution is to get two full novels done this year. I’m working on both of them off and on, so we’ll see which is done first.

So, I guess you can consider this an update. See you all next time 🙂

Posting is good, yes.

So much for getting on a schedule, right?

I have absolutely no excuse for not posting the past two weeks. It was laziness on my part, yes. I apologize for that, and with that done, let’s move onto the actual topic of conversation.

This time, it’s a post about writing. Gasp. Shock.

While I was writing Trust, I noticed a juxtaposition between my belief system and my main character’s – specifically, about how one thinks of a fetus. This is going to be a controversial topic, but not discussing it won’t make it go away. So, onward.

One major plot point of Trust is that there is a fetus involved – I won’t say how it applies to the story or who it applies to. Just know that one exists. The character in question was pregnant, and while I was in her head writing, I could feel her emotions about this baby. She loved it dearly even before it was born, and it was a feeling that shocked me. I mean, I get that women get pregnant – it’s a major fear for me. My feelings on the matter are rather more ambivalent – a fetus is a fetus until it pops out and breathes. Only then is it a baby. To have this character thinking of a fetus as an already-breathing creature was a major culture shock for me.

It also made me realize that this is a strength in writing.

Not every character will share the author’s feelings and beliefs. If that happens, the book becomes one-dimensional and flat. A strong story thrives not only on a plot – it survives based on the strength of its characters as well. By having this character with feelings the exact opposite of myself, my mind was opened in a way it hadn’t been before. In real life I liked to think of myself as a person who could see many sides of an issue, but things like this always left me baffled. The facts always seemed to lead up to only one conclusion, but now I see that other side of this issue. I see now how people could object to a certain thing involving fetuses that I shan’t mention. It doesn’t change my opinion on the matter, but it does give me greater insight into the opposing viewpoint.

Trust is coming along nicely – the characters are talking to me again and so I’m getting some good writing done. Now that I can get into everyone’s head again, I expect to have it done soon. Soon, however, is a non-specific statement of time, so who knows how long until soon comes around.

One week, however, is quite specific. I shall see you all again then.