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Final Fantasy XV review: it’s not really a Final Fantasy game

I’ve played over 100 hours of Final Fantasy XV and it took me at least the first 50 hours to figure out exactly what bothers me about the game. That’s good, right? I mean, obviously the game isn’t LITERALLY UNPLAYABLE, or I wouldn’t have survived more than 40 hours. And I’m not going to say that the game is bad, because it’s not a bad game. But it is a fundamentally flawed game. I’m reminded of one reviewer who humorously gave it “9.75 out of 10: disappointing and underwhelming,” because there’s a lot of truth to that. This game may be doing relatively well on Metacritic, but from the reactions I’ve seen from the game’s audience, it seems like a different experience could have pushed it even higher.

So here is my unnecessarily long-winded “review” of Final Fantasy XV, which has undergone several revisions over the last six months, and thus may not be as coherent as I’d like, but the next 3,000 or so words should nonetheless be at least moderately entertaining. You’ve been warned.

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Americans: take the high road or burn America to the ground?

Following the 2016 presidential election, the vitriol is palpable. Read More…

In this election, issues matter more than labels (or at least they should)

The worst moment of the entire 2016 presidential campaign was when Bernie Sanders said the phrase “democratic socialist.”

Why? Because since last summer, it seems like every online discussion regarding the election has involved slapping a label on an issue or policy and then spiraling into a fruitless debate about its precise application or meaning. And I blame the word “socialist.”  Read More…

The worst reason not to vote for Bernie Sanders

When did citizens of the United States adopt a defeatist attitude?

For months now, I have read time after time that if elected president, Bernie Sanders “won’t be able to get anything done,” and that his policies will “never be passed” because of Republican opposition.

But what does it say about the United States if its citizens are afraid to vote for a candidate because they don’t believe their government will allow the leader of the free world to address the biggest domestic problems it faces? Moreover: what does it say about us?

May 5, 1970: Thousands of University of Washington students occupying and blocking Intersate Highway 5 (I-5) and facing state troopers in riot gear as they protested the killings at Kent State Universtiy and the invasion of Cambodia. Photo, Museum of History & Industry, Seattle.

May 5, 1970: Thousands of University of Washington students occupying and blocking Intersate Highway 5 (I-5) and facing state troopers in riot gear as they protested the killings at Kent State Universtiy and the invasion of Cambodia. Photo, Museum of History & Industry, Seattle.

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I support Bernie Sanders, and I’m not stupid or unrealistic

Today I read for maybe the 10,000th time an assertion that supporters of Bernie Sanders are unrealistic, that Bernie Sanders supporters will all be disappointed if they elect him because he won’t be able to bring the change he’s promising, that Bernie Sanders’ policies will be “just another example of Democrats making promises they can’t keep,” and so on and so forth. And I’d like to briefly dispel a misconception about people who support Bernie Sanders as the next president of the United States:

We’re not stupid.

bernie-sanders-change-will-not-take-place-without-political-participation Read More…

A poem about carpet squares

Today’s poem—or, more precisely, the poem I wrote on March 27, 2003—will test the old adage “write what you know,” as its subject matter is something with which we’re all perhaps too familiar: carpet squares.

I don’t believe the classrooms in my high school even had carpeting, so I’m not sure why this particular topic inspired me to write a poem in my high school creative writing class, but here we are: my poem about carpet squares, followed by some nonsensical paragraph that doesn’t seem to have anything to do with anything:

March 27, 2003: Poetry about carpet squares

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That time I analyzed my creative writing class

I’m back from my summer vacation—and boy, are my arms tired!

But seriously, folks: it’s been a long year. Let’s celebrate the fact that we’ve nearly reached the end of our annual trip around the sun by reviewing that one time I analyzed my creative writing class:

March 25, 2003: I analyze my creative writing class Read More…

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