about the talking fish

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Writer. Wheelman. Occasional DIY mechanic. Walking collection of hang-ups. Hopeless romantic. Old-school. Analog soul in a digital world. I am all of these things and more.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

FM is the new AM

I find that I'm listening to more radio nowadays.

I've been alternating between the old favorite Magic 89.9 and the relatively new kid on the block, Jam 88.3.

Magic in particular has prided itself on becoming a radio station known more for its DJs than its music, which frankly lacks variety and gets tedious to listen to. The thing is you won't listen to Magic for the music. I was too engrossed with Grace Lee and Mo Twister's morning discussions on "Good Times" and the pranks of the guys of "Boys' Night Out" to care. While they do have an artificial impetus going for listeners to stay tuned, especially in the case of "Good Times" where they give out huge moolah for remembering the minutiae of their shows for the week, Magic definitely has a working formula going.

On the times that I do want to listen to music, I switch to Jam. This station comes across as a breath of fresh air in a landscape choked with pop-rock garbage. Jam has heavily invested in becoming "an alternative to alternative," deviating slightly from the tired formula of pop-rock to bring audiences fresh new music by acts like Death Cab for Cutie, Sister Hazel, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus and Kings of Convenience. If my friend Gerald were to pick a radio station to follow, I'd bet Jam would be his pick. While Jam also offers discussions by the DJs, it's the music that sells it to me.

If both stations aren't broadcasting stuff I like listening to...there's always my CD and digital music collection to fall back on.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Lazy daisy

One of the things the package from Uncle Butch and Auntie Carole had inside it, aside from the usual clothes and foodstuffs, was JB's old PlayStation 2. It had been a while since my beloved PS1 (itself a hand-me-down from Tita Hedwig) bit the dust, and I was getting by using emulation to play my old PS1 favorites.

It's funny how late I am with the console gaming industry party nowadays. Two years since the PS3 came out, I just got my own PS2. Not that I'm complaining. I'd rather have a PS2 than an overheating XBox 360 or a PS3 starved of good games.

Seeing how late I obtained the PS2 I was concerned about getting games for it. I don't mind paying for the legit thing now, but if the games are too hard to find that's it for me right there. Surprisingly, DataBlitz's more popular branches have a healthy catalog of genuine PS2 games. I got Metal Gear Solid: The Essential Collection, and pretty soon I'll be getting Gran Turismo 4 and the Devil May Cry box set.

Suddenly I've rediscovered lazy Saturday afternoons.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Take me back!

On my final month with my current client I am beginning to miss working for Barclays.

Work has been in shambles lately, with overzealous, arrogant developers biting off more than they can chew, a process that's frankly worthless, test data so fragile it breaks down with one ill-advised action, and test scripts that are too damn long for their own good.

I'm not saying Barclays was without problems, but we were vastly better equipped to handle and avoid the shenanigans we're experiencing now.

According to friends I know, there's a chance Barclays might take us in again. Personally I'd jump at the chance if it meant returning to Internet Channels.