The Alabaster Sock

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Archive for the ‘Nobody Cares’ Category

The Social Media Universe Explained

Posted by Matt on August 9, 2011

As you may have noticed, I have joined numerous websites based on the idea of mass communication. One may wonder how I can keep track of all my web domains, or if I’ve joined the legion of Internet ADHD Victims. The jury is still out on the latter (not really, I totally am), but for the former, it’s all about having each account serve a specific purpose in my web of advertisements for me. You may prefer one mode I choose over the others, so I will now explain what those specific purposes are:

WordPress blog – Longer posts about things I don’t like, people I like to insult from afar and under general anonymity, some bad reviews (because I can’t review things very well), and observations about creativity and writing for the most part. I will be embarrassed by whatever I’ve posted here as little as a week after writing it.

Tumblr – Links to things I read or find interesting. Because I really hated doing that on the blog. Also, a record of my Internet ADHD.

Twitter – Dumb statements I make on the fly because I think I have to. Links to my Tumblr posts awkwardly shoehorned in. Attempts to communicate with people I respect, only for me to delete all replies because I’m afraid of looking like a fool.

Endless Reaction Shots – Beats the hell out of me.

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Disturbing Fetishes I Have Known

Posted by Matt on July 11, 2011

Now for something completely unwanted.

Now, I’m not one who thinks the waves of unsettling fetishes one can (too) easily find on the Internet only came about because of the Internet. No, they were almost certainly there since before the digital age. It’s just that people like you or me, who had no idea one could be turned on by such and such, are more likely to find out about them. Learning way too much about them, even. I’m sure most people innocently watching stuff on Youtube have had a moment where they see a video on the ‘Recommended’ list with an unusually descriptive title, click it, and find themselves through the looking glass. It’s far worse for anyone who dares peruse any of the many open art sites like DeviantArt.

I think it would interesting to look up an actual psychology paper on these sorts of things and how they come about, which must exist somewhere, but am too afraid to look it up myself. But for those of who have been lucky enough to avoid finding out about some of these things, sticking to your basic websites and getting in and out of your Google Image Searches quickly, here are some of the odd ones I’ve stumbled upon. I’d love to learn where some of these things come from, but for now, the knowledge that they exist is enough. More than enough.

Hypnotism

On one hand, probably the tamest of the lot with it’s light BDSM traits, but in other ways, very very disturbing indeed. Let’s face it: someone with a hypnosis fetish craves domination, or to be dominated themselves. All the methods seen in the media are featured on the sites, and special attention to paid to the face of the ‘victim’. Some like them to stare blankly (an additional love of vegetables?), some enjoy the ‘victims’ being all smiles. Drooling might be considered a bonus. A subset of this is mind control, which only furthers that rather unsettling feeling.

Quicksand

Now we’re getting more into the Internet era of fetishes, which includes categorizing random scenes from movies, television shows, and drawings of all sorts. Like hypnotism, there are a fantasy bondage aspect to the quicksand fetish, what with the focus on struggling, helpless women and all. Of course, being a groan-worthy staple of children’s adventure stories for so many years, it’s no wonder it’s ended up being an obsession (a real obsession. Just read the quotes from this) for the many now scouring the Internet. Also like the hypno fetishists, there are subcategories. Some, for example, just like the idea of people covered in sticky sludge, which would include things beyond quicksand.
Quicksand and other bondage scenarios involving women even have a ‘cute’ acronym among the fetish circles: DiD, or Damsels in Distress. Are they trying to hide behind it? I don’t know.
A related phenomenon that is far worse is a sort-of sister fetish centered around women being hurt in several different ways called ‘Ryona’ (I don’t know what the term actually means, and like hell am I diving even further into that cesspool). It’s really scary, and I’ve unfortunately stumbled on far too many Ryona videos on Youtube. Just a heads up: stay the fuck away.

Inflation

This one might be a tad more widespread because of the crossover with the furry community. Essentially, this is people who tug to the image of people/things being inflated like a balloon. ‘Muscle inflation’ is a popular term/category. I don’t really have much to say about this one, except “What. The. Fuck.”
There is also some crossover with the final fetish I’m going to talk about here.

Vore

That is, being turned on by the idea of being devoured. There are two main divides in the vore community: ‘soft’, which means essentially being swallowed whole and alive, and ‘hard’, which I assume means not being eaten whole and alive. I have successfully avoided the latter one so far. There’s really no limit to what can eat what in this world, it all works (which is why there’s a segment of the furry base revolving around this, as well). Some subcategories of the soft side include things called “Unbirthing”, “cockvore”…ugh, you get the picture. It’s not a good picture. (Ramble: I remember reading an early report on the PSP Kingdom Hearts game that called the new monsters in it ‘Unbirths’, and I said to myself: “Boy, they’re going to need to change that”).
Cartoon lions are a popular feature on the vore Youtube. Some people like to involve stomach acid in their fantasies. As for ‘why’, I’ve observed a few explanations from those who inflict this upon us all. Some people apparently like the idea that being inside someone will be all warm and comfortable. Some, probably the vore-inflation dual classes, like the image of someone with a cartoonishly inflated belly. There are certainly bondage aspects to soft vore, as well as domination fantasies. Personally, I find it all really, really gross.

Again, my main purpose in recalling these things, aside from creeping myself and everyone else out, is to wonder how things like this happen. The common thread between all these fetishes is that they often take root in childhood, based on something the participant witnessed in their choice of entertainment. The Internet really can’t be considered a true culprit in this matter: it’s an enabler, but it’s not a cause. I doubt many of these fetishists got their starts by just finding these sites. No, something has to be there before. So, what makes it so that something as (seemingly) random as this takes such a stranglehold (uh oh, that’s an unintentional allusion, oh boy) on their psyches? I’m sure most live completely normal lives in all other respects, but something happened there to make them become one of THESE THINGS. There must be an answer somewhere, but like I said, I’m sure as shit not going to go down that highway of madness.

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DON’T READ VOLUME 222

Posted by Matt on June 18, 2011

Oh god, what now?

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Posted by Matt on May 25, 2011

You know the only reason I complain so much is because I’m not confident with my ability to write interesting things about the stuff I love. I love plenty of things, you know. It’s just, you know, what can I say about them that would be at all interesting? I have plenty of theory about the things that have been able to engage me in my head, but that doesn’t necessary mean (a) I can translate those ideas into a non-awkward essay, and (b) those theories are all that interesting.

I read The Filth recently, and I could talk about what a great, disturbing piece of fleshy dystopia it is. How Morrison can design all this horrible imagery (all brought brilliantly to vomitous life by Chris Weston), create a protagonist so pathetic, and tie it all into such a bleak world, yet still allow some semblance of hope to remain, because that guy just loves his fucking cat so much. But who wants to hear that from boring ol’ me? there’s much more interesting takes on it out there. I’m just the guy in the back going “Hey, cool!”.

I bought Nathan Rabin’s My Year of Flops a month or so back, partially because I knew it would be the kind of light thing I could read on the plane heading for Toronto. You know what? Rabin is pretty much what all of us nerds who like to write about entertainment in a jokey manner, speak in Simpsons, and hope that mockery will bring out our inner genius want to be. In the early days of the decade, when we could finally figure out this Internet thing, we then began to fill it with our spew about pop culture detritus. Oh, we are so clever, we thought, and we hyperbole’d and pointed out every piece of illogic in whatever wounded animal of a movie/cartoon/food product we could find. This is what attracted us to the ‘My Year of Flops’ column in the first place; we simply wanted to read Rabin viciously disembowel Howard the Duck or Waterworld or what have you, just like we did. Except he has a genuine love of film and all the trappings of the industry, so that no matter how absolutely abysmal some of these movies are, there’s a genuine interest in figuring out how they tick, and exactly why they were rejected. That is what separates the real minds from the simple hecklers. That is why I keep reading the column.

But who wants to hear that from me? I’m just an idiot on the Internet.

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Posted by Matt on May 22, 2011

Summer Plans, 2007:

1) Prepare for incoming adult education
2) Work for money for incoming adult education
3) Raise hell in AMERICA (okay, North Dakota)
4) Go to the Super Smash Bros. Brawl website EVERY WEEKDAY
5) Hang out

Summer Plans, 2008

1) Figure out what I want from year 2 of adult education
2) Work for money, thinking it’s for continuing adult education, but really ends up being used on slurpees and bubble gum because year 2 of adult education ends up being pretty much free anyway (thank you, sliding scholarship standards)
3) Try to get into to university newspaper as an actual editor this time.
4) Marvel at how unbroken my laptop is after a whole fucking month in the shop. Proceed to crack the hinges again.
5) Hang out, make nachos

Summer Plans, 2009

1) Contemplate the final year of adult education, what the future holds
2) Work for money for final year of adult education and BEYOND, move up in the exciting world of grocery retail, feel like a boss
3) Marvel at new laptop, quickly fuck it up to the same levels as previous one
4) Get bored with life, seek a time out of town, new furniture
5) Hang out at my friend’s new crib, want one of my own

Summer Plans, 2010

1) Actually decide where I want to go next, decide that regression is the best solution
2) Find real work, find it, but end up going back to the job I had left anyway
3) Get own place, adult responsibilities, etc.
4) Devote free time to video game forum lurking
5) Hang out for escapism purposes

Summer Plans, 2011

1) Get out of bed every once in a while, maybe

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Posted by Matt on April 28, 2011

Many blogs I visit have at least one of these navel-gazing posts (that’s my excuse, and I’m sticking to it). I really don’t expect many people to be reading anything on this site – it’s more of an outlet to rid my mind of various thoughts no one cares about. Even so, I thank the people who have visited, and that one guy who commented that one time.

So, every once in a while, I decide to look at my stats. Apparently, February 2nd of this year was my busiest day. And then there are the search terms. So, what does direct people to me on WordPress? Mostly, it’s Pokemon names, going to this. I also get a lot of hits from people searching for reaction shots, true murder stories, and pangolins.

And now, the weird ones:

jackson publick cute
horrible cancer
“eleuterio penis”
“it’s late and i have a test tomorrow”
“it’s sublime don’t you think” keanu
this is me giving a fuck owl
nancy callahan hartigan fanfiction (NO)
old omersex

Personally, I am glad I became a source of information for people wanting to learn about horrible cancer.

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Posted by Matt on March 14, 2011

Okay, first thing’s first: I’ve been watching a lot of Teletoon Retro lately (for any American readers who may or may not exist, that would be the rough Canadian equivalent to Cartoon Network’s Boomerang. It started up a year or so ago, and has thus become the object of affection for ironic twentysomethings who don’t want to evolve their entertainment palates past third grade) and have to ask, what’s with my obsession with shitty cartoons? I watch the shit on this channel, and removing the old Looney Tunes shorts and the odd episode of The Real Ghostbusters it really is just a sea of shit, why? And it’s not just this, either. I braved the grating, unfunny Nostalgia Critic just because I kind of enjoy hearing someone talking about these shitty cartoons that I often remember as well. (And before you question why I waste so much of my time, remember that this is the age of multitasking. I am usually coupling these pointless adventures with something far more important, like…I don’t, sorting some files I have alphabetically. Something like that.)

They’re not interesting to think about, other than in a “I can’t believe real, adult people spent hours of their lives producing this, what the fuck”; the vast majority are the definition of pure mediocrity, a wisp of a thing (for whatever reason, animation does not seem to have a large number of fascinatingly/entertainingly-bad oeuvre like live action does; the bad stuff is by and large painfully boring), obviously developed for sugar-addled 7-year-olds who have time to be subliminally advertised to. Or maybe that’s not true….well, not for me. The fact that animation is not limited in its imagery, capable of so many thing, that sort of draws me to it. So…I guess it’s the fantastic stuff that endears to me? Or maybe part of me is secretly one of those dreaded nostalgia-driven nerds, and the dominant rational nerd part just keeps it under wraps most of the time? Who knows.

But yeah, I keep watching this shit. Here’s a list of observations that have developed over this time:

He-Man is really, really, really bad. Like, I think calling it animation might be giving it too much credit. It’s only a few steps above Clutch Cargo. I’m sure the people at Filmation did the best they could with the zero budget they had, but still. We really have had an television animation renaissance once the 80s ended; sure, some stuff is still stiff and ugly, but at least they seem to have enough money/skill to animate scenes where the characters actually interact with each other. (And yet Paul Dini and Bruce Timm would move on from this crap to much better things.)

The Real Ghostbusters is much better than pretty much everything else on the channel in terms of both animation and writing (which isn’t saying much, really); some of the stuff still plays up my folklore/weird monster love. However, it has that weird “Obviously outsourced to Japan” aesthetic that I often find pretty jarring. (And yet J. Michael Straczynski would move on from this okay stuff to become a rather mediocre comic book writer)

-The main difference between the G.I. Joe and Transformers animated spin-off movies? The Joe one is one of the few exceptions to my “animation doesn’t do interestingly-bad” observation from above. Even with just some cursory knowledge of that property, you are led to question every single story decision on display. It’s amazing in its ability to make both fans and people who have never heard of G.I. Joe have no idea what is going on. I still don’t recommend ever watching it, though.
The Transformers movie, on the other hand, is just a slog, with the only point of interest being the way it attracted a bunch of C-Level ‘name’ actors and Orson Welles in his dying days. It’s written almost as if they expect us to actually care about a story with characters named Hot Rod and Ultra Magnus, Weird Al Song Out Of Nowhere or no.

The Raccoons is quintessentially Canadian; who the hell else would think that kids would be interested in watching what is essentially a bog-standard family drama with cartoon animals? Heavy moralizing, a complete lack of excitement…yet this show was on television for 8 fucking years. It looks alright, but man, what the fuck?
Of course the breakout star of the show was the primary antagonist (most of those ironic twentysomethings I mentioned before all know the name Cyril Sneer), and this is of course because the protagonists were so boring that we really do cheer for the unrepentant cartoon capitalist to just bulldoze them all into oblivion. Yes, it’s one of those things.

I swear, one of these days I’ll actually have something worthwhile to write about.

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A List

Posted by Matt on March 1, 2011

Well, now that that’s over with, back to fun.

You know what’s coming out Sunday? I’ll give you a hint (by which I mean I’ll link to the answer).

To celebrate the incoming POKEYMAN games, Ill do something special. As the games introduce 156 new monsters, I decided that I’ll go through them all and pick the 25 (plus a few extras, as you’ll see) that really stand out. Yep, here are the coolest things to come out a game for 10-year-olds that I will also be buying:

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Posted by Matt on February 11, 2011

And now: Godzilla.

We all know there’s going to be another stab at an American-made Godzilla movie, right? Well, now you do. This one has the distinct advantage of not having Roland Emmerich involved. I’m not saying this guarantees it won’t be terrible, but at least it could be a different kind of terrible. The hiring of Garth Edwards, the man behind some weird little horror movie that came out last year called Monsters, as director also guarantees it at least has a decent chance to be interesting in some way.

Chances are this will be another attempt to recapture the feeling of the very first movie. It’ll hard to really get at that atmosphere, considering the historical reasons the 1954 Godzilla was made in the first place (read: not-so subtle metaphors!). But there’s still something there for the creative types to grapple with, some decent science fiction ideas that could still be mined. And if they can do something interesting with it, I say go for it, as much as I like the monster vs. monster movies.

One thing I’ve considered for this theoretical movie is the way in which Godzilla will be rendered. Of course, rubber suits are out, unfortunately. As fake as they were, those movies in some key ways still feel more ‘real’ than a lot of CGI, which feels rather floaty and cartoony (it’s one reason why the original King Kong still looks better than all the subsequent remakes. Stop motion may not look ‘realistic’, but it feels ‘real’ in a way, because it’s actually there, with physical objects being manipulated and interacting with eachother). In a perfect world, we’d get at least one chance to see what top-of-the-line animatronics could bring to Godzilla, but it is not to be.

This is a situation where I think motion capture would help. The problem with a lot of purely CGI creations in otherwise live action movies is that we have a really hard time really suspending our disbelief, because often they look like video games projected onto a green screen (which is what it is most of the time) and the actors being told to react to something that isn’t there. But CGI can and is used to great effect in enhancing what’s already been filmed. If there’s some form of ‘reality’ that the CGI is being layered onto, the effect is usually much better. In order to get that lumbering movement characteristic of Godzilla to be represented on-screen, mocap would be the best option.

I don’t know why I’ve been putting so much thought into this.

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Christmas Post 9/12

Posted by Matt on December 22, 2010

Today’s post is special, because I found an old blog post that tells me what I got for Christmas in 2007, solving the mystery that has been bothering me for the past few days.

Okay, so it wasn’t actually bothering me at all. Even so, it’s good to know I have a record of these things, somewhere. So I won’t forget anything I’ve done. Thank god for the Internet age, where everything is remembered forever and forever.

Oh crap.

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