a brief reprise from depression month

I tried my hand at making a podcast. Let me know how it turned out.

An apparent misstep.

I started writing this blog to keep people abreast with my physical situation. Then, I started writing to express myself. For the last year, I have been putting a greater weight on music reviews than I have either the former.

I want to be a resource for the community. The biggest issue where that is concerned: I don’t know what people need. If there was a more direct question, I am sure that I would be able to fill in the necissary steps to complete it. Even if the answer was getting help, I would know where to ask.

Consider this me tapping out of the review world for a little bit. Again, I will be doing them, but space them out more. Kind of like how I used to go about a month between spotlights.

In the meantime, if anyone can think of a particular situation in regards to disability they would like me to illuminate, PLEASE do not hesitate to ask. I think my first revisit to that world will be talking about how horrible air seat cushions are.

Why “Let’s Plays” are great

This is kind of a different topic for me, so if my information is off-base, please forgive me and give me proper sources below.

Let’s Plays: I cannot think of a more decisive topic in my house. I think they are fantastic, my dad thinks they are a waste of time. He wonders why I am willing to watch someone play a game for a day worth of video as opposed to play the game myself. I get it, I really do.

My reason for watching someone play a game comes to only three reasons. The first of which is I am always broke. It would be fantastic if I had all of the money for every console and game that my heart desires, but I do not even break cost of living most months. Seeing how most games that hold my interest are either 70+, or on a console that I don’t own (see the Switch), I have no ways of actually playing said game. The only way I can experience it is by watching others play it. Most Let’s Play(ers?) already play in a similar way that I do: they search all of the dark corners for hidden bits of lore. That is a (mostly) free way I can get the entertainment that I crave.

The second reason is time. Most games that I want to play (Persona 5, for instance) take hours, if not days, to finish. With the cavalcade of games that come out every quarter, I do not have even a quarter of the time required to play everything. Throw in old games, open-ended games (Minecraft, Terraria, Grand Theft Auto) and games that piggy-back off of older titles (Life is Strange) and I would not have time to sleep or eat, let alone write. Watching someone play for an hour while describing the lore surrounding the areas that peak my interest satiates that part of me that craves all the games.

The third reason is just simply skill. For instance, I love the concept of the Dark Souls franchise. I own all of them, and I have put dozens of hours into each. I am not good at Dark Souls. I have put the dozens of hours into them and die incredibly quickly, sometimes not even being able to get out of the first place. They are made to be very hard. Part of why I love them is that they do not hold the players hand and refuse to guide anyone to anything. I still love the atmosphere, art, and worlds of these games. I can ONLY experience these games through a third party.

For these reasons, and I’m sure that I’m forgetting more, I love Let’s Plays. I get my shots of lore, as well as get to experience the parts of games that I would love. I still play games like Tetris or Hearthstone myself, because watching someone else play would just frustrate me (Everyone has their own way of being “good”).

I have not done the research, but I am curious how Let’s Plays effect game sales in the long term. I have a pretty good feeling that the explosion of popularity for Minecraft was partially fuelled by groups like The Yogscast, but I remain ignorant to if Atlas’ refusal to allow anyone to publish gameplay of Persona 5 has effected longterm sales.

Let’s face it, anyone who wanted to know anything about Persona 5 has bought Persona 5.

Let’s do more!

I have been contemplating what else to do outside of writing and producing. I have considered bolstering my YouTube channel, but that would feel forced. I am currently working on a new book, so writing a screenplay on the side seems a bit cumbersome. I cannot draw, and really do not have an urge to learn.

This is the conundrum that I find myself in: I feel like I should be doing more in the arts, but I have no idea where to put my effort into. Even worse, I hate everything I do even when I am told it’s okay. Hating everything you do is kind of the “artist-dilemma” though. I have yet to meet anyone doing anything involving some sort of art who thinks that their work is greater-than-par. I have met a few who think that they are hitting a new niche, which is cool.

I just keep holding out that Hannah will give me new Chance Procedure things to work on. I made that video for Patient Zero a while ago, and I have an itch to make that a full song. I have been in studio enough to know that you have to be prepared, so I’m not pushing as hard as I could.

Oh! Interesting fact; my old singer (Rahib) just had his birthday! I don’t know why I had an urge to share that on this blog, but there it is! He’s 30, so he is 15 days older than my little brother.

Side note: have you picked up the latest version of my book? It’s almost 3X larger, more grammatically correct, and (I might be biased, but) WAY better. I mean, it’s 1230298341X more depressing, but WAY better. Amazon finally updated some shit, though it’s still awkward to navigate. I have done everything I can on my end to make it easier. Review comes out soon, I hope!

International Wheelchair Day?

Did you know that there is an International Wheelchair Day on the first of March? I had no idea. I have things to say on the matter:

Yes, I do think it’s a good thing to have. It reminds people that there are some of us in a wheelchair. There are a lot of us, for sure. However, there is a very small percent of the world population. I feel like pointing out that fact may create a social backlash revoking some accessibility actions.

I would love to be proven wrong. I want the world to be accessible. Not even for me, but for everyone. Let’s face it: who doesn’t love being able to reach things on a top shelf? Who wouldn’t benefit from lighter, more accessible doors? I am not saying that a ramp into every location is nessissary, but not having access to even a temporary one, is just selfish at this point.

I am not going to go out of my way to make an issue at every place I go if they are not accessible. That’s not my job, and it is too large of an issue to put on one person. I am going to scream into the internet and point out just how STUPID it is when things aren’t. If you are a store, you are cutting yourselves off of a potential source of revenue.

I went on a rant a few months ago over on Twitter about how stupid it is when companies brag about having accessible parking now, only because not having it stunts any potential client growth, but now I am going to leave this here as a point of rally for people with disabilities of all sorts to raise their voices. I know that there are some things that are impossible to plan for, but at least companies should try. Just try.

Wow: got sidetracked there. My initial point was how I didn’t know International Wheelchair Day was a thing. I blame society. Yep. Point finally concluded.

Mildly Angry

I had this long post talking about the current climate with the impending health crisis and isolation. I also talked about how I am fixing things in regards to my book on Amazon dot com and brought up different things we could all do instead of just bashing our heads in silence. I talked about feeling like a burden to friends and family. I wrote about how horrible everything may seem, then came up with this fantastic anecdote to ease minds.

I wrote over 1000 words, then WordPress was a douche and erased EVERYTHING. I don’t know why, what I did wrong, or if I can ever fix it.

So, I am not going to let it win this time. I am writing a short post expressing my disappointment. Before anyone says “hurr that’s wordpress hurr”, I know. I have heard of such things happening. I realize that this is far from a perfect platform, but this is all I can afford right now. So fuck off.

The short version of what I was saying about the book: Amazon dot com is still showing the first press of You’re Not Dead, meanwhile Kobo is just being stupid. I recommend using the Friessen Press bookstore directly to ensure that you are getting a right press. They are not expensive, and have printing offices in England and the United States (if you’re concerned about shipping costs).

In the meantime: I am going to cry into a pillow and hope my dogs leave me alone long enough to find some sort of

Be Socially Awkward

Hi! Hello.

FUCKING HI!

Yeah. Big surprise! I like being socially awkward. Why? Because it keeps things interesting! I enjoy seeing how other people will react to me saying an off-colour joke or being too loud in a library.

From what I can see, there are four kinds of people:..
well, more than four kinds. But, this is observation, and I am too lazy to dive into every GD personality type!

There are people who shy away from your actions. The people who either cover everything up OR they try to silence you. They are the ones who take a few moments to figure out how to best do something the first time. They are (overly) conscious of everything they say, and actively get offended on other peoples behalf for ever thing said.

Then, there are the people (like me) who don’t care what they say. There is never malice behind what they say, but they do take some form of sick satisfaction from watching the other group cringe. Usually, they say the wrong things on purpose to prove the point that the true basis for the hatred of topics or terms is just as offensive as saying them.

Then, there are the bigots. Those who say stupid shit because they are trying to be funny. Also in this classification are those who say things to hurt other people. I have little respect for them (yes, I do see the irony) and I have a hard time understanding how people like this can still exist.

The fourth category is the most unfortunate. Those who say something with no intent to offend anyone, but they say egregious things that get them into trouble. Listening to someone from this category is an exercise in schadenfreude.

Being socially awkward is more than just being offensive, and that’s where people seem to fall a bit off the mark. Being socially awkward, to me, is bending expectations and unspoken laws of normality. Pointing out flaws in your person to a group of people who don’t know you? That can create the most fantastic miasma of groans that can never be expressed in text.

The hardest part, for me, is letting people who don’t know me well that I am joking around. There is nothing worse than pointing out that I’m in a wheelchair to have it followed by dismissive comments about how other’s have it worse or things of-the-like. Even worse than that is when someone piggy-backs off my statement and follows it up with something actually offensive. Just because the cripple said something detrimental to some cause does not give an able a pass on stupid.

Wheelchair Update

This is going to be interesting.

NEW DISCOVERY! Sarcasm doesn’t write well.

This is probably only interesting to a portion of people who actually keep up with this blog. Even with that demographic in mind: my writing on this topic will only interest a few.

Since I got my own wheelchair six years ago, I have had a piece to my chair that I have both loved and hated. It was supposed to be support for my knees, and was issued to me when my mobility was less.

The medical purpose for it is to keep my legs at a comfortable angle. Because I have an air cushion that does not work right, it had a tendency to sit higher than what the rest of the seat would. It would then cut off blood flow to my feet and was incredibly uncomfortable. The main reason I used it was to hold my cell phone somewhere other than a pocket. It was good for that.

A while ago, an OT commented on how this piece of kit was too far forward. She informed me that it I couldn’t move it back, just remove it all together. I was hesitant: I was under the initial impression that it was to keep the cushion raised and supported.

I removed the plastic sheet last night. It turns out that it was completely unnecessary. Now, my chair is smaller than ever before! I say that because it is both a blessing and a curse.

The two inches that it gave me, it turns out, changed where my centre of gravity was while doing general things. Even the small wheelies I would perform to get over small objects feel, though the wording is a bit strong, dangerous. Though I just removed maybe one percent of the volume of my chair, is has changed the feeling dramatically.

I want to say that I hate the change, but that would not be entirely true. There are parts that feel almost threatening, but I am certain that, with time, I will be able to get used to it. I still have my air cushion for now, though I hope to be getting a solid seat soon.

It’s funny: the woman that I got the seating from described the air cushion as a “Roles Royce of wheelchair seating.” Though I have no reason to disagree with her, this is my 3rd cushion and even it is fucking destroyed. So, I submit this query. Is it worth spending more money to get something that could be great for a little bit, or dropping less money for something that might just be okay for a longer time?

FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS, AM I RIGHT?

Personal Blog

I haven’t written one of these in a while. I just don’t think that I’m particularly interesting, and I have a hard time thinking that anyone would have any interest in anything that I am up to. So, I guess that’s the warning!

I wrote a new book! Not that I haven’t been riding that train for weeks now…

It’s been re-released under You’re Not Dead, but I fixed the grammar and spelling huge, plus I filled it out with fictional bits. It now sits just over 200 pages for the physical copy. Amazon has been… awkward… with their restocking of it, but the store over on Friessen Press works beautifully! They print on demand, as well. That ensures that you will get the right version! I am still looking for a publishing agent, and that journey is hard and depressing. Yet, this is the path I chose, kind of. I only say “kind of” because, if you have listened to my PodCast I did on Taker Wide in the past, you know that art is less of a choice and more of necessity.

I’m pretty sure that I have mentioned this part before, but my wife and I moved back in with my parents last year. It’s going well! I will say that I haven’t seen many friends since we moved back here, but that isn’t a huge change since Burlington.

If you aren’t awkward with south-western Ontario, that’s less than an hour away. Unfortunately, it is a separate health system, so it’s a bitch to get everything reset as far as doctors go. We’re slowly figuring that out. In fact, today I have a place that I’m going to! Right on time, as well!

I have written the next ansP recently. The last one underperformed, but that is, in part, due to me not realizing what day is was being released. If you haven’t read it, go do so (please). If you have read it, what do you think of it? It was fun to write, but I don’t intend to do the same style anytime soon. If there is an interest, though, I will write another one.

We don’t have wheels any longer. We got rid of our car recently, because upkeep was too expensive. On that note, the Patreon is very close to $100, and I find that stupid exciting. It would make it possible to go to events and maybe do meet-ups in the future!

Check Your Inspiration

To start, this is not an attack on anyone. This is more a dissection of the situation at hand than a low-blow or a pathetic passive/aggressive barrage. I want to make people think about what they are sharing, not berate well-wishes and honest attempts.

I was sent something the other day showing a kid, after seven years, getting over his quadriplegia. It was amazing, to be sure, but the person followed it up with something along the lines of ‘look what he did! you can do it, too!’

Was that intended as a slight? Hell no. It was from a good friend who I have known forever, and I love them very much and hope they love me the same. Was it without forethought? Absolutely. The video they shared had many things different from what I experienced.

1. Accident implies spinal issues. I have brain damage. They are two very different things.
2. The equipment being used in the video are things that I have never seen before, let alone used. It is actually impossible to say “hey: this kid learned to walk in seven years. why can’t you?” in this situation because I don’t have access to everything this guy did.
3. There is no information on the personal goings on with this kid. Is he poor or rich? What kind of healthcare does he have access to? What other consequences other than the quadriplegia did he experience?

I am far from ragging on this kid. He went from having no fine motor skills to walking (with a walker, but still). It was impressive, but to turn around and ask me why I am not doing what he is doing is saying that we have the exact same experience. That is diminishing what I have been dealt, and is trivializing what he has accomplished.

-RANT-

While I have your attention, my book is available some places! I have links that can be found here, but it’s still being pressed and I don’t even have my copies yet! If you wish to order it, that’s amazing and I hope you enjoy! I will post way too much when I get my copies and even more when I have actual order information that I trust!