Toilet Thoughts

One thing I’ve noticed while waiting for my turn in public toilets is that there are dudes who stare at other people’s dicks while pissing. I’m not sure why they do it, but they do. I’m not sure if it’s wrong but I think not everybody is comfortable with their dongs being stared at.

Why do people use the water from the urinals to wash their hands? I first noticed this when I was in Indonesia – I know the water that flows out from the pipe is technically clean, but why not just use the sink that’s available? It baffles my mind why people would do such things.

The other day, I completely forgot to flush the toilet bowl because I was in a rush. I didn’t get to see the reaction of the dude who walked into the stall after me but I only realized it while I was washing my hands. I hope he wasn’t too mad. I’m glad I have auto-flushing toilets at work so I never have to worry about forgetting.

Why do people have conversations on their phones in public toilets while taking shits? Don’t they care about the sounds that will be picked up over the microphone? On another note, why do people stand around having conversations in the toilet? Why not take a few steps outside so you don’t have to block an already cramped space?

I wonder if toilet cleaners make mental notes about people who use their toilet. Oh shit, not this guy again, sigh. *Puts on heavy-duty gloves*

Some people actually watch football games in the toilet without using headphones or muting their phones.

I wonder how many shit particles are stuck to our phones after a week of regular usage?

Just some random thoughts I’ve saved from my experience using public toilets.

Random Ramblings

George, what happened to your daily posts? You were supposed to blog 5 times a week! You’re slipping man! That’s what I tell myself. I’m pretty sure nobody noticed that I only posted 4 times last week (so this week I gotta do 6). Anyway, what can I say? Work is picking up so I’ve been spending a lot more time doing that instead of writing random blog posts for myself to read. I recently discovered that I don’t have to work at the office if I feel like working elsewhere, so I’ve been making use of that privilege.

I tried working at a co-working space the other day. It seemed more like a regular cafe than anything, so it didn’t really make a difference (I was expecting some sort of increase in concentration and efficiency). There were a lot of kids just hanging out there to study or watch videos on their laptops/tablets so it didn’t really have a working vibe to it. To be fair, it was probably the cheapest co-working space I checked out so it probably wasn’t a good judge of what it should be like. I’ll be exploring other places in the future.

Thinking of ideas for the next big IP is a daunting task. It’s already hard enough to create interesting stories and characters, but when you throw in conditions like marketability, target audiences and commercial value, it gets even harder. You want to serve an audience something they want. But it has to be something new. But if you think about it – almost everything good that can be done has already been done. So you try to create something that doesn’t already exist and has potential. Then you think – is there a reason why nobody has been doing it in the first place? Maybe it has been tested internally and doesn’t work. So you’re left scratching your head wondering if you should continue down that path. Is it better to be derivative or original? If you do something that’s so far out left field, would people get it?

These are questions I ask myself while I try to work out what I want to make. It has to be something I believe in. Because I know that I won’t be able to give my all working for something I don’t believe in. Which is probably why I’d be a terrible salesman for most products and services.

I’ve been watching a lot of Pewdiepie on YouTube. He’s probably one of the most entertaining YouTubers out there right now. I guess there’s a reason why he remains as the most subbed channel on the platform, with nobody coming close. I used to think, why the hell would anybody watch reaction videos? Then I got sucked into the world of H3H3 and YouTube drama and found it all very interesting. Sure, they have no educational value and are really a big waste of time, but sometimes all you wanna do is tune out before you go to bed and these videos are a great way to do so. Also it doesn’t hurt that I find them extremely funny and entertaining.

Sometimes I feel like I’m burnt out from blogging too often. But then on the other hand, I think it’s just an excuse and I’m just not being disciplined enough to keep writing. Writing is good for me. It’s typing (which is fun), therapeutic, and a great way to practice putting words down.

My projects for this year:
– develop my first game
– record a new EP
– edit Animal Bus and turn it into a comic

It’s almost May and I’m not even close to finishing any of those things. Damn, time flies.

Good Deeds

What is karma? Is it real? Does everyone believe in karma? Why do people do good things? Do they expect others to do the same to them?
I get that doing good deeds is what makes you a normal human being, and that you shouldn’t expect anything out of it. But if you’re going out of your way to accomplish something – are you still entitled to a perk in the future?
I mean, think about it, there’s a reason why people believe in karma. Right? Or there’s a reason why religion tells us to be good people. There’s no reason to be a dick. Unless you’re purposely upset about somebody and want to ruin their day.
I don’t know. Didn’t really have any cohesive thoughts, but I was just thinking about it to myself.
Over the weekend, I did a couple of ‘good deeds’. I left a note on somebody’s car, telling him that his rear wheel had a flat tire. And I informed a cashier that a whole section of goods they were selling had gone past their expiry date. I don’t expect anything good to happen to me because of those things. Aren’t they just things that people should normally do?
However, whenever someone does something good, you usually hear about it (here I am blogging about it LOL). People think it’s something extraordinary. Like it’s something special to not be an asshole. Isn’t that kind of weird? I don’t know.
Where am I going with this? Nowhere.

I just think that it’s weird that people think being nice is a special thing to do, when in fact – being nice is probably the foundation of being a decent human being. People shouldn’t expect anything when they’re being nice. There’s no reason to.

Sure, it’s better than being an ass to someone else, but the better alternative is to just be nice, or ignorant. Move on with your life. Don’t contribute negatively.

But then again, if everybody just ignored everybody, I guess this world would fall apart as well. Hmm.

Dear Doctor

Spending time in a hospital sucks. Unless you’re there for the birth of a child (assuming it isn’t the spawn of Satan), it’s never pleasant. You sit on a chair or stand against a wall, staring wordlessly at the patient you’re visiting, hoping that somehow, some way, a miracle happens, getting rid of all the ailments he/she is suffering from. That’s never the case.

It’s a lot of waiting. Waiting to check in. Waiting for their condition to stabilize. Waiting for results of a test. Waiting for doctors to arrive. Waiting for their verdict. Waiting to see if the medication works. Waiting to find out if the patient is ready to go home. The worst part about it? There’s nothing you can do about it. Everything is out of your hands.

It’s like playing the lottery. You just pay money and hope for the best. That’s the thing about humans. No human is alike. Not everybody works according to the text-book. There’s no manual for each person. Some people respond differently. Some people show different symptoms. There’s a million different variables determining what the issue and solution is.

We’re not computers. Two beeps during POST – RAM error. Try reseating it or replacing the RAM sticks. Mouse not working? Try plugging it in again, or changing the battery. There are limited outcomes when it comes to machines, which makes troubleshooting easy.

I’d like to believe that doctors are always trying their best to solve the situation. That everything they do is beneficial to their patients, and that they’d like to get them discharged as soon as possible. And that it’s not some scheme to make money for the hospital by keeping them in their bed for as long as they can.

Dear doctor, I know you won’t be reading this post, but I trust you and your abilities to do what’s best for her. Because, let’s face it – I know shit about what’s going on, only that it hurts and it’s life-threatening. Despite the nagging I get from time to time, I’d rather have her home than wasting away in a hospital bed. She’s the strongest woman I know and wouldn’t be there if she had a choice, but this time, things are out of her hands.

I don’t think I’m ready to lose her yet. I doubt I’ll ever be ready.

I hope I’ll be able to bring her home soon.

Limited Connectivity

One of the interesting things I experienced growing up is the state of our connectivity. I grew up in an age where internet access was non-existent, available and slow, fast, and now prevalent. These days, if we didn’t have internet access on our phones, we’d feel extremely lost and disconnected. It never used to be the case. Internet connectivity used to be a privilege, a bonus and now it’s a requirement. No, this isn’t going to be a post about how kids these days are constantly glued to their screens at dinner (I’m guilty of such behavior; damn you Six Match, why are you so addictive?) – it’s just something that I thought of while trying to connect to a public wifi hotspot today.

There’s nothing wrong with using an internet-less computer. In fact, it helps with productivity. I can imagine if I was online now, I’d be watching Liquid vs OG at DAC instead of writing this blog post. So it’s alright to have no connectivity every now and then. I’ll just catch the NoobfromUA highlights tonight. It’s times like these I’m glad to have my music collection stored locally. Although I’ve used Spotify in the past, it hasn’t replaced my need to have music on my hard disk. Just knowing for sure that I can play any song I like without having to worry about my internet connection or if Spotify’s servers are working is a good feeling. Sure, it’s a hassle to collect discographies of obscure artists, and my music collection takes up a lot of disk space – but it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make.

Over lunch, there was a short conversation about tour guides and how it’s not something a lot of people enjoy these days. I hypothesized it was due to the availability of information on the internet. If you were to visit a brand new country in the coming week, I’m sure you could do a quick search to find out places you should visit, things you should avoid and so on. Then, from the comfort of your own home you could plan your whole trip without having to rely on a tour guide. Benefits of your own trip? Not having to do things you don’t want to do and being able to set your own schedule (nobody wants to wake up at seven, especially when you’re on holiday).

The internet is wonderful, and I would dread going back to a life without it. It can help you with your work, yet it can hamper your progress as well. It’s all about self-control and moderation. Don’t let it turn into a vice – it should be a tool.

Ramblings of an Old Man

What makes something niche? The fact that there aren’t many people who know about it, or the fact that people don’t know about it yet? Over the past few weeks, I’ve been doing a lot of surveying and research for work, and one thing I realized is that something that seems niche to me might actually be mainstream to other communities. So for example, let’s take this game: Mobile Legends. None of my friends play it. I’ve heard a decent amount about it, mostly through ads on YouTube and people discussing it on Reddit but I had no idea how huge it was until recently.

During some focus group testing we did with local kids, it turns out that a lot of them played the game. Some of them were as young as 6 years old! At an age 9-12 focus group we had today, all of them played the game – girls and guys. Later in the day, I found out that Tony Fernandez just signed an esports team. I initially thought it was a Dota 2 team until I looked it up – it was a Mobile Legends team. Turns out the game is pretty damn big. But because I didn’t know people who played it, the thought never crossed my mind.

The other day, at the smoking area, I heard some random people discussing Fortnite. I only know a handful of people who play it. Turns out, it’s one of the most popular games right now. The other day, I discovered that a friend didn’t know who Jimmy Eat World was and to me, they’re like one of the biggest bands in the scene. How can you not know Jimmy Eat World? It was mostly due to a difference in age. The same friend listed a bunch of bands I had no idea existed either, so I guess it goes two ways.

So now, I’m sitting here thinking – is something niche to me only because I don’t know about it? Or am I just not doing my due diligence to keep up with the times? What defines a niche though? Does it require to be a percentage of a population and if it surpasses that it becomes mainstream? Is everything I like that is unpopular at the moment an example of a niche? Why am I even contemplating the meaning of the word? Google defines it very clearly:

a shallow recess, especially one in a wall to display a statue or other ornament.
“each niche holding a shepherdess in Dresden china”

recess, alcove, nook, cranny, slot, slit, hollow, bay, cavity, cubbyhole, pigeonhole, opening, aperture;
“in a niche in the wall is a statue of St John”

a comfortable or suitable position in life or employment.
“he is now head chef at a leading law firm and feels he has found his niche”

ideal position, calling, vocation, métier, place, function, job, slot, opportunity
“he feels he has found his niche in life”

denoting or relating to products, services, or interests that appeal to a small, specialized section of the population.
“other companies in this space had to adapt to being niche players”
place (something) in a niche.
“these elements were niched within the shadowy reaches”

Why am I even thinking about this? Maybe it’s time to update my music playlist and install Mobile Legends and Fortnite. On a side note, Aliexpress is having a big sale now and I ordered a bunch of things last night. Should be fun getting gifts in the mail over the next few months. Woot.

Sleeping Upright

Back when I flew a lot for work, one of the things which annoyed me were flight attendants waking me up before landing to straighten my seat and pull the window shades up. While I knew it was protocol and they were just doing their job, I never understood the reasons for it. To me it seemed like they were being anal about something so trivial because it was never explained to me before. Today, I decided to Google why and according to these articles, it’s mainly for passenger safety. I learned something new.

Anyway, since the frequent interruption of my sleep, I adapted by learning how to sleep in an upright position, and I have a beanie pulled over my head to block out light. Now the flight attendants don’t bother me on flights anymore, unless I put the sticker for them to wake me up for meals.

I still haven’t learned how to not drool during sleep. My only tip is to not wear black so your saliva stains don’t show on your shirts.

I kinda miss flying long distances. Long hours in a cozy seat, while you enjoy old movies, music or podcasts with no interruptions. No texts, emails or phone calls. Just you, alone with your own thoughts, soaring through the sky.

Alone time is good time.

Hoarder Mentality

I’ve seen the horrors of hoarders, thanks to all those shows on TV. I’ve always wondered how people can do such things to themselves. Collect so much shit until the point where it’s practically impossible to walk around their homes without tripping on anything. Why do these people want more things than they need?

Today it struck me, I have a similar mentality too. Fortunately for me, I’m mostly limited by my budget so I can’t really afford to buy everything I want on whim. However, my problem doesn’t lie with physical goods. Beyond the countless books I have waiting to be read (thanks Big Bad Wolf!), I have more digital content than I can ever hope to finish consuming in a lifetime. I’ve got tons of music. Every time I fall in love with an artist, I tend to download their whole discography so I have access to it anytime. It just annoys me to know that I don’t have the complete collection of an artist’s catalog even if I’m only a fan of a couple of albums or songs.

At first I thought, maybe I’m some sort of completionist, but then I realized I’m far from it. Especially when it comes to video games – I don’t really care about collecting all the achievements or getting every item in the game. I enjoy games pretty casually – as long as I finish the game and get to experience the story, I’m satisfied. I don’t need to do anything extra to enjoy it.

I’ve got enough movies, TV series and cartoons to last a lifetime if I played them continuously nonstop. When will I find the time to watch them all? I won’t. Yet they sit idly on my hard disk drives, metaphorically collecting dust, until I decide to watch them. Same thing with all my ebooks and digital comics.

Computer games – I’ve got a few hundred games in my Steam library, many I know I’ll never touch (titles I’ve obtained from bundles) and yet many more in my wish list. I bought them all because I was interested in them and they were available at a cheap price. I would love to play them all, but I don’t have the time to do so. I have more guitars and keyboards than I need, and god knows what else that’s hidden in the back of my shelves.

And all these things I’ve mentioned have only been acquired over the past decade. There’s a whole lot more than I can’t recall at the moment I’ve been collecting my whole life. I used to keep empty alcohol bottles when I first started drinking, but I got rid of them in January. I know I don’t have any problems throwing out things I don’t need, I just need to find out why I wanted to keep so many in the first place, and stop that problem before it starts. I don’t want to end up on TV with a crew of people trying to coax me out of my room and clearing out my house because it has become hazardous to live in. It’s time to stop.

What’s Your Potential?

I was listening to an episode of The Joe Rogan Experience (a very good podcast I discovered recently) where he was speaking to Dr. Jordan Peterson, a clinical psychologist. One of the topics which came up for discussion was potential. An unquantifiable value that human beings hold each other accountable for, despite it being vague and different for everyone. It brought back memories of the comments I used to receive in my report cards in school. George has so much potential.

For context: I was never a top student, neither was I at the bottom of the class. I was the very definition of average. I got by in my classes, wasn’t much of a nuisance to my teachers, and I didn’t participate in any delinquent activities. But when you were enrolled in one of the ‘top’ schools in the country (debatable, also subjective), there were expectations to be met.

I’m not sure how many kids received the same comments, but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t the only one. While it seemed like a reasonable comment back then (my parents took it as a neutral-positive statement), in retrospect it was just another way of saying I was a shitty kid. I mean, think about it. Everyone has the potential to do almost everything they want to in life. As long as they are physically capable, it’s all up to them to work hard and practice the right skills and techniques correctly to accomplish their goals.

We all had the potential to become something. Whether that is something to be proud or ashamed of, nobody knows, we find out when it happens. If the teachers were blunt, they would have written: George hasn’t been showing any signs of being a future rocket scientist or doctor, he’s what we call in this school a disappointment. I guess if they wrote that, it would have probably been applicable to many other kids in the school as well. And there’s no way lil ol’ me could be the problem. It’s the fault of the school/teacher/education system! There would have been an uproar from the parents.

However, as I grew older, I realized that school wasn’t as important as adults had wanted me to believe. With each new phase of life, what I had learned in the previous one didn’t matter to me. High school didn’t prepare me for college. College didn’t prepare me for work. Nothing prepared me for life in the working world – I learned all I needed to learn for work while on the job! School was just an alternative name for daycare. We were being taken care of until we could go out to make our own money.

Back to my report card. Did my teachers have foresight? Did they know what I was going to be? I can’t say for sure. After all, they never told me what they thought my potential was. It’s vague statements like these that will haunt me until the day I die. What if I had already achieved my full potential? Does that mean I can’t do any better in life? Do the goalposts shift? Would I be capable of achieving more? How can I have so much potential if I don’t know where I am and what my limit is? It’s practically infinite, right?

And that’s how I ended up writing.

Turning Eleven

Today, I paid my web host the money to keep my blog running for another two years. I don’t even know why. I have like 10 readers a day (honestly, thank you for reading) and I don’t even write content that I think is appealing to anyone who isn’t me.

Anyway, for those of you wondering – I have no ads on my blog. No, it’s not because you have adblock on, it’s because I chose not to monetize it. I’ve been campaigning against ads and advertorials on personal blogs since forever, and shall continue to do so. I paid for a domain and hosting so that visitors don’t have to look at ads on my blog. Also, adverts just make sites look ugly.

“Oh George, you’re so stupid. You’re stuck in your old ways! You’re being stupid by spending money and not making any.”

You know what, maybe they’re right (though I highly doubt it because the number of hits on my blog isn’t going to give me revenue anyway) but I write more for myself than anyone else. It’s just something I enjoy doing, and for me to monetize it would be turning it into some sort of job, which I wouldn’t want to happen. I like recording my thoughts down because I enjoy trips down memory lane for a few reasons:

  • I like seeing how much I’ve grown over the years in terms of writing style, vocabulary and choice of subjects.
  • I enjoy reminiscing – reading through my old posts allows me to travel back in time, to see what kind of state of mind I had then.
  • It’s fun to read about good (and bad) memories. See whether you’ve learned anything since or you’ve been making the same mistakes over and over again. I guess it’s kinda like looking through old photo albums except that I’m not much of a photographer, and I think I do a better job conveying my thoughts with words than photographs.
  • Hence, I see no reason to run ads on my blog and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

    Earlier this year, I made some slight modifications to my blog’s appearance, and you might have noticed I have a lot fewer constraints when it comes to what I write about. The only thing I’ve maintained is Technology Tuesdays and Writing Prompt Wednesdays. I did a Music Monday this week just because of Moose Blood, it’s not a regular thing anymore. Who knows what I’ll write in the coming months. Even I don’t know what I’m going to be up to. I’m insane!

    I’ll continue to write until I decide to stop writing one day, but for now I’m here to stay. Feel free to give me any feedback if there’s something you’d like to see more or less of and I’ll try to accommodate it.

    So once again, thanks for reading this trash blog for the past 11 years (longer if you’ve been following my shenanigans on Geocities and Blogspot). Here’s to another 11 years (or my death, whichever comes first).