People Don’t Get Chat

I play Pokemon Go

(ever-y day!)

And one of the main aspects of the game is catching Pokemon.

You’d think there’d be a way to tell other people you’ve found certain types of Pokemon in certain places. Then they could visit those places and catch those Pokemon; which they have been searching all over God’s green Kanto to find!

OH WAIT! Continue reading

It’s fireworks season…

I’m sitting outside right now. I’m at the Pokestop across the street. I came out to see who was shooting off fireworks.

It’s everyone, by the way.

Besides wondering if Illinois will EVER create a good budget that doesn’t suck it’s citizens dry so the fat cat legislature can live easy, I’m also contemplating the same thing I contemplate every year.

Why are fireworks illegal?

I’m not talking about the sparkly looking sky bombs the city shoots off at the official 4th of July celebration. I’m talking about the little light it on fire and run like hell versions usually sold at tents on the side of the highway.

And yes, I know some of those can be near death experiences waiting to happen.

You see, fireworks are illegal in Illinois. But in my home town of who the heck cares, nobody cares. The citizens don’t care. The police don’t care. The media doesn’t care. Even PETA simply reminds people to keep their pets indoors so they don’t get scared and run away.

The only time it becomes a problem is when some kid shoots his eye out. Then people are like, “what’s wrong with you, kid? Get your holidays straight, will ya?!”

But seriously, only when someone gets hurt or sets their house on fire do we see anything about how dangerous fireworks are. The police come out and say they will be confiscating all fireworks they can find.

And then they go out and shoot them off, too!

So, my problem?

Illinois is corrupt! Ya, it took fireworks to make me realize that. I couldn’t figure it out any other way…

*cough* budget crisis *cough*

Excuse me.

My issue isn’t why illegal fireworks are allowed. My issue is why aren’t fireworks legal?

If fireworks were legal, every year there would be fireworks safety demos. There would be safety pamphlets everywhere. The news would play firework safety segments, there would be fireworks safety articles in the local newspapers, and YouTube would light up with top 10 firework misconceptions… albeit along side top 10 coolest, most unconventional things to do with fireworks videos… But still.

You’re not going to rid the world of stupid. So at least give people, who would otherwise be smart, actual safety tips.

I’m now going to list the dangerous and stupid things I’ve seen people do, some of which I’m watching right now because they may be stupid and I may not support it but ooh look at the pretty lights in the sky:

  • Shoot Roman candles at one another.
  • Shoot off fireworks in the middle of the woods.
  • Hand a toddler a sparkler.
  • Light a bottle rocket in ones hand and allow it to fire from their hand, attempting to time their drop with the ignition of the bottle rocket (and guess how well that goes).
  • Tying multiple bottle rocket fuses together and lighting them all at once.
  • Sticking a bottle rocket in the ground, because that’s as good as a pole or, like, a bottle. Oh no, it fell over! Quick! Stick it back in the hole before it ignites!
  • Set a bunch of firecrackers behind a buddy and light them.
  • Bending over a firework that failed to ignite to try and light it again.

So, Illinois, if you want more money just make fireworks legal. Then, you can tax the hell out of them instead of taxing the hell out of me.

-Diggs out

P.S. – You don’t really know how smart someone is until you get them around fireworks.

If You Love Peace and Hate Terrorists, Type Amen Below

I am Christian. Specifically Catholic.

And, yes, Catholics are Christians.

No, seriously, we are.

Being a good Christian I go to church on Sunday, read the Bible every day, compare my actions and thoughts as well as other’s opinions to what the Bible teaches, listen to Christian themed music, try to watch wholesome TV, movies, and YouTube, and subscribe to or follow Christian quote,  meme, and worship accounts on Facebook, Instagram, WordPress, Tumblr, and Pinterest.

What else is there to do?

😉

Seriously, though, there’s so much more I could do. For example, instead of pretending like I lead a Christian life, I could actually, you know, go out and be Christian. 

But that’s hard.

Why can’t I just like and share all those social media posts. That’s spreading the word, right?

And as for proclaiming the name of Jesus, I type “Amen” on Facebook posts.

That’s good, right?

I mean, think about this:  if you’re scrolling through Facebook and see one of those posts – “If you love Jesus, type amen below.” – and you can’t take 1 minute out of your busy day of wasting time on Facebook to type “amen”, then do you think you’ll take a few minutes to explain to someone why you’re a Christian? You can’t give God 1 minute, but you expect him to give you eternity in paradise?

Probably not.

But I know what you’re thinking…

(Actually I don’t.)

“Typing ‘amen’ on a Facebook post because they say ‘if you love Jesus type amen’ isn’t preaching or proclaiming. It’s an ad tactic meant to coerce you into making the decision they want you to make by providing you with the choice between their decision and a totally and obviously deplorable decision which a decent human being would never make.”

(Do I get brownie points if you were actually thinking that?)

My rebuttle:

😝

Now that I acted like a 10-year-old to make you think you have the intellectual upper hand, let me do some splain’in. 

First off, I hate those posts. They are a marketing tactic meant to trick you. You can type “amen” or you can pass by the post, which means you worship evil incarnate.

Your choice.

It’s just like normal ads that claim you’re a bad mother if you don’t use a certain diaper, or you’re a horrible human being if you don’t give 15 cents a day to starving children, or you’re a worthless sack of crap and a waste of human genetic material because you won’t adopt that three-legged puppy.

(Darn you Sarah McLaughlin! Making me feel the feels. How rude!)

Some of these posts say things like “Jesus loves everyone. Type amen if you agree”.

That seems good. Jesus does love everyone (despite what some fanatical weirdos might claim). So I guess I’ll type Amen… because I agree… but if I don’t type amen does that mean I don’t agree? They don’t specify.

There are some posts that posit a conundrum: “Jesus is Lord. Like if you love Jesus. Ignore if you love the devil.”

O.o

That one is a little more damning, perhaps. It seems as if you must like that picture, because if you don’t, that means you love the devil. But does it?

I’m going to speak only to Christians since 1.) these posts are Christian in nature, and 2.) I don’t feel like debating multiple religions or lack thereof right now. But you may feel free to extrapolate my thoughts to your religion or beliefs and the posts you see on social media.

Does ignoring these types of posts mean you love the devil, or want Satan to win, or hate God, or whatever the alternative is? For that matter, though, does liking (or sharing, or commenting, or tagging, etc.) mean that you love God, love Jesus, want peace, believe in the resurrection, that you are saved, or even that you’re a good person? Can interacting with a Facebook post prove anything about the state of your soul?

Can it?

CAN IT!?

Let’s break it down (wikka wikka screetch!).

Here’s the problem. You have two choices: be a good person or be a bad person. If you type “amen” or like or share you are a good person. If you ignore you’re a bad person. You could call out the post as the marketing trick it is, and that’d be good. However, by not promoting the post you are failing to promote God. You are, in a sense, denying God. That is also bad. So, not falling for the trick is good. But falling for the trick results in something good. But falling for the trick is bad. But not reacting is also bad. So if you react, that’s good, except it’s bad that you gave in, but good you acknowledged God, but bad you did it just so you don’t look stupid, but good you did it because you know you should, but bad you did it to please people instead of God, but good if you genuinely saw it as an opportunity to spread the word of God, but bad if you rely on others to remind you to talk about God.

*takes breath*

Basically, the reason you’re reacting to the post will tell you whether or not you did it for the right reason.

If you see the post as an opportunity to spread the word of God and decide to put a positive spin on the appearance of God on a social media platform, then you’re probably reacting for the right reason. After all, almost everything can be spun in either a positive or negative manner. 

However, I do think these people should stop. Seriously, if you posted something to the effect of “like if you’re a good person and ignore if you’re a crap sack” what do you expect people to do. They don’t want to take the chance that someone will find out they didn’t like the picture. Make that “someone” God Himself, and you can’t escape him. He just saw you scroll past the post. Go back and like it right now or you don’t love Him!

J/K

As far as I’m concerned, these people are taking advantage of the correctly working conscience of everyday people and tricking them into liking and sharing their post. This then serves to spread awareness of their own page or account. They get more followers, and in turn get more views, shares, likes, and even more followers. It’s just self promotion.

Sure, they’re spreading word (or pictures) of God. So that’s good. But you’re not supposed to test the faith of other people. You’re not supposed to trick people.

I can look past this, until you post one of these:

“God will answer all your prayers. Type Amen if you believe.”

This one looks fine at first. Even I believe that God will answer my prayers. But this comes with an asterisk. (That’s this thing * ) God will answer any prayer, as long as His words live in you and your life is lived for Him. If what you are praying for goes against God’s word (like, say, praying that someone crashes their flashy, expensive new car because they’ve been a jerk about having all this money to throw around and you can barely afford Ramen noodles… jerk… where was I?)

A prayer like that is a jealous prayer. That’s not a God-like thing to pray for. So… God probably won’t answer that prayer with anything more than an opportunity to be more thankful and grateful for the things you already have. That’s kind of how that works.

But then, someone doesn’t type “amen.” Are they bad? Do they not believe? Are they a fan of Star Wars?

Ya, see, we can’t tell and it’s none of our business. Plus, as one of the posts I actually will share points out, God is not a genie. Quit forwarding silly “share and God will answer all your prayers” posts. He’s not your fairy godmother. That’s not how this works.

-Diggs out

P.S. – sometimes I just write until I feel like I’m done. Sometimes I write until I feel like I should have been done a while ago and wrap it up. Sometimes I write with a clear beginning and end, creating something I’m proud of. And sometimes my brain jumps topics so quickly I end up lost and have to stop. This feels like one of those times.

#WhileIWait to Wake Up

Hey, would you look at this. Just a few days later and I am once again writing. Looks like someone figured out how to follow New Years resolutions finally…

Or I’m just bored.

Either way here’s a dream I had last night.

Have you ever read any of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books? I read the first one, bought the next two, read half of the second, saw the first movie, but that’s it. It’s a good book – the first one. You should read it. Have any kids who don’t like reading? Give it to them. They’ll come around.

Anyway, my dream, or rather the story structure/thematic mood of my dream seems to resemble the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books. There was me – a kid who just wants to be cool, my friend – who’s kinda goofy, some cool kids – who are actually cool, the dog groomer – who comes over to our house to shave and save the hair off our pet lion, Beast… and then a little blond-headed kid.

Let’s see if you can guess the message my deep subconscious has for me.

So, in the dream now, I was looking for a way to get the kids in school to like me, or think I’m cool. So, I get a skateboard. I’m in a store, much like a Walmart. I try to ride the skateboard as best as I can, but I’m just not that good. The cool kids don’t make fun of me, but they don’t seem to notice either. The blond kid is riding around a bike, and even doing a couple of tricks. He seems really cool, but similarly to myself, the cool kids don’t really take notice of him. However, unsimilarly to myself, he doesn’t seem to care, or even notice. He is just having fun riding his bike. He seems happy, and then smiles when I take notice of him. But it doesn’t persuade him towards any behavior. He just keeps on being himself.

Then the dog groomer comes to collect hair from Beast the lion (and if I remember correctly, she uses the hair to make wigs for a local small time movie studio).

After I wake up from a good dream, or a dream that was very impactful, I almost always try to milk it. Sometimes that means attempting to fall asleep once again, but other times it means just laying there playing out the dream in my head, and like a room full of screenwriters trying to polish a script I make revision after revision.

Why?

Why not? It’s fun.

So the story became one of a boy who just wants to be known. He meets another boy whom people know. But it turns out, people only know what they know and don’t know anything else. The blond kid is a cool kid, but he doesn’t have a large group of friends. He doesn’t go many places. He doesn’t hang out with a lot of people.  He doesn’t have an entire school-full of children who know his name and chant it everytime he walks into the cafeteria. He’s just a kid who enjoys life, and shares his enjoyment with anyone who wishes to take part. Our main character, me, learns a valuable lesson about happiness. He learns that his goofy friend might just be all the “fans” he needs. He also gains a new friend, not because of popularity or gimmicks or toughness, but because of genuine interest in another human being, and the reciprocation of that kindness. He learns to be himself.

Which is more than I can say for non-dream me.

But, this blog as evidence, I’m working on that 😉

Diggs out.

Spring is in the Air

Guess what?

It’s Spring!

You know what that means?

“Teacher, can we have computer class outside? It’s soooooo nice out!”

Really?… You don’t listen inside with nothing but frosted windows and computer posters to stare at. You think cars driving by, birds, the wind blowing through the trees, the occasional lost dog, the smell of freshly cut grass, dandelions blowing in the wind, squirrels gathering nuts, and the sun glistening through the clouds which look a lot like that one guy from the Walking Dead TV show that everyone is always yelling at isn’t going to be distracting?

Yay spring… but also “boo spring!”

-Diggs, out.

P.S. – but seriously, YAY SPRING! That means I’ll be able to go on more walks!

Best Digital Piracy Analogy

So I’m just sitting on the toi- couch. And I’m taking this survey asking about technology and media. One question asks what I think of digital piracy.

“Do you consider digital piracy to be as bad as shoplifting?”

Negating my past actions (being from the age of Napster), I “Strongly Agreed.” For some reason this question made me ponder the actual thought of what shoplifting entails and how digital piracy compares to it. I thought back to every argument I’ve ever had with stupid teenagers (and some stupid adults) on this topic. I could never really make my argument stick, though.

I once came up with an argument which involved a never ending supply of chairs. You’d take one and it would duplicate. Just like downloading a song or movie. But the reality of such a situation makes the whole analogy fall apart quickly.

I’ve tried taking the “morals” route, but most people don’t care about what’s right and wrong in this case. After all, who cares about paying a few bucks to a multibillion dollar Hollywood studio who seems to be out to get all of your money for their trivial attempts at entertaining you?

Alas, I finally figured it out! Here’s the best analogy that shows digital piracy is in fact wrong, if not the same as stealing.

First off, lets take a look at what digital piracy entails: a studio makes a movie. They put the movie in digital download form, or on one of those disc thingy’s. You take this video and put it in a format which you can place on all of your devices, stream across your home network, and share with your friends, or strangers on the internet. Technically, you paid for that copy of the movie (or a viewing license to watch that copy of the movie in its intended portal). You may not own the movie itself, but that copy is yours. If you want to back it up in case you lose the original you should be able to, right? If you feel you already paid $20+ for the DVD and shouldn’t have to pay again just to watch it on your iPod, Xbox, or computer you’re not alone. Should you be able to make copies and hand them out to your friends (when they had the opportunity to purchase the DVD just like you did)?

Lets look at WalMart now. Pretend WalMart began making products beyond their special off-brand toilet papers. Lets say they make their own media player: the WalPod. And it only costs $30! Of course, everyone will want a WalPod. Now, being WalMart they have a ton of money to make crap like this. But you decide you’re not paying $30 for something made by WalMart. So you, and most of your friends manage to find a way to circumvent the security protocols at WalMart and begin walking out with one everytime you visit. In fact, since you’re all doing it, other people start doing it as well. Pretty soon, it becomes all the rave to steal WalPods. Like I said earlier, WalMart has lots of money. However, even thought you might not think you’re going to hurt them, the reality is they are moving product (losing product?) and not making any money. They still have to pay people to work on the WalPod: designers, marketing teams, programmers, and such. As time goes on, they begin to pay these people more than they are making off the WalPod.

Now, I know what you’re thinking… “That is obviously wrong, because you are taking something from them without paying for it. Now they can never sell it and lose out on the money it would have brought in if someone would have paid for it. Digital media is not the same thing.”

Well, you’re only half right. It is true that downloading a song leaves the original in tact and still available to sell. But that’s not the similarity between the WalPod and an MP3. The similarity lies in the end result, not the existentialism of the original product.

When you download a song, movie, tv show, video game, or other digital media you have just robbed that content creator of the money you would have paid to access/own that specific digital item. They might still be able to sell the original master file, but not to you. Nor to the other people who pirated that file.

The people who worked (and possibly continue to work) on those digital items will soon be out of a job if the parent company sees that they are paying the workforce more than they are making on that item. What’s worse, people will still have access to that digital media content and neither the parent company nor the content creators will be compensated for producing it.

If that doesn’t make sense you, then you’re probably a teenager… Or just stupid. Sorry.

Diggs out.

    Many Unimportant Stories

    There are many stories which are taking place during the day.

    You don’t even notice them.

    Someone is in front of you in the supermarket checkout line and she is bumbling about. First, her credit card doesn’t work. When she goes through her purse to find money she comes up short by a dollar or two. Then, she figures she will write a check, but has none left in her checkbook. You almost feel sorry for her, but you shouldn’t.

    You see, this is a fluke. She actually has a bunch of money in her savings, she forgot she canceled that credit card because she only needed one, and she doesn’t write checks very often which is why she forgot to change her checkbook. Rather, you should be more concerned about the teenage girl behind you who took the attention this lady is getting as an opportunity to stash a few candy bars in her purse. She doesn’t look like a thief. As a matter of fact, you know her. She is friends with your son. She plays volleyball for the high school, is always on the high honor roll, and participates in just about every school function she can… so why is she stealing?…

    There are many stories that are taking place everyday, but the ones you remember aren’t the important ones.