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421  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The "N" Word on: January 04, 2011, 06:55:05 PM
I don't think too many people are going to disagree that the fact that this is being brought up as an issue is kind of silly. It's probably overly sensitive and I think it is generally a bad idea to mess with art because a lot of times art simply is not supposed to be safe anyway.

But faced with the very real prospect that Huck Finn won't make it back into a classroom because of a word that has accumulated decades of baggage that Twain could not possibly have anticipated, I'd prefer changing it for something else and seeing kids get a chance to read it in school as opposed to not.

There are more important themes that can be explored in Huck Finn aside from just why he uses a certain word, important themes about race, humanity, and relationships that it would be a shame to lose simply because people are unwilling to compromise. It sucks, but my personal opinion is it is a very small price to pay compared to what is lost otherwise.

EDIT: Not that it matters but my guess is Twain would find the entire situation equal parts amusing and depressing, since that's kind of how he regarded most things. :-)
422  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The "N" Word on: January 04, 2011, 04:14:56 PM
Five things:

1) Often this great Twain book gets left off of the list because of the presence of this word. I personally find this silly but if the removal of the word gets the book back into more classrooms then I am all for it. Gribben's (the scholar spearheading this change) motivation here is to get more people to read the book - I highly doubt it is coincidence that he is a professor at Auburn in Alabama. To quote Gribben, who wanted to make the change after talking to a number of teachers: “They said 'we would love to teach [Tom Sawyer] and Huckleberry Finn, but we feel we can't do it anymore.' In the new classroom, it's really not acceptable," he said. "For a single word to form a barrier, it seems such an unnecessary state of affairs."


2) The baggage associated with this word could, in the eyes of new younger readers, simply serve to distract. The counter to this argument from Thomas Wortham (in the above link) is salient - perhaps an opportunity is being lost to discuss Huck's use of the word - but the elimination of the word does not eliminate the important themes of the book.

3) Editions of the book with the word still in it will still exist. This could potentially be regarded as a "radio edit" of sorts of certain music. You can buy a music album with the naughty words removed or you can buy it in all its cussing glory. I don't think more OPTIONS is ever a bad thing. I think we'd be having a different conversation if this was an attempt to replace all existing editions of Huck Finn, but it isn't. It's a version that hopefully will put it in the hands of more kids.

4) To Kill a Mockingbird still gets taught in plenty of schools, and I figure the same thing will happen here - the original Huck Finn with all of the original language will still get taught in plenty of schools also. But in some places where it isn't currently taught because of the presence of one word littered throughout the book, this simply provides a new chance to reintroduce it.

5) Censorship is suppression of speech. Not allowing an alternative version of Huck Finn would be a form of this. However it should be clear which version of the book you are getting when you purchase it.
423  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Movie Trends that NEED to Stop on: December 20, 2010, 05:11:15 PM
Well, the Tim Burton Batman came out in 1989 and I'd say the Nolan Batmans are pretty stinkin' good.


Obviously I'm just being a jerk.
424  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Movie Trends that NEED to Stop on: December 20, 2010, 05:00:44 PM
Agree 100% on the 3D.

My least favorite trope by far is the herky jerky action camera that seems to be very popular these days. I like a nice, cleanly filmed action sequence where you can really tell where everybody is and what they are doing - to me it makes the scene much more exciting. Top Gun for example (showing my age here) where you can know at any point in a dogfight where are the players are in relation to each other. Or the car chase scenes in Ronin. These are examples of really well filmed action sequences - too many now rely on the "quick cut" and the camera zooming around and I can't figure out what is actually happening spatially (the Transformers movies come to mind).
425  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Recently Viewed Movies Episode 2: The Vampire Bites Back on: December 20, 2010, 04:49:27 PM
I thought Tron Legacy was the best music video I've ever seen.

As a movie? The plot was pretty much a total mess but who really cares about that, I highly doubt anybody was walking in expecting Shakespeare.

The actions sequences were a mixed bag - there were a couple of really awesome actions sequences (the disc wars were amazing), but the light cycle sequence I thought was disappointing. I couldn't tell where anybody was in relation to each other spatially because there were so many quick cuts between different characters. Things just randomly appeared when it was necessary for an explosion.

However the light jets were freaking fantastic.

Finally, I was actually really disappointed by the use of the 3D - I actually expected a lot more. I went with a crew of 7 other people that all saw Avatar together and we agreed that the previews before Tron (particularly the one with the animals) used 3D more effectively than the actual feature did. That was by far the most surprising thing to me - I expected to have my mind blown by the effects like I had in Avatar (a movie that frankly I could not tell you what actually happened in, I was too busy giggling like a kid at the awesomeness of the tech) and it came up very short (with a couple of notable exceptions I won't bring up in case of spoiler potential).

But all told I'm glad I saw it in the IMAX if I was going to watch it at all. Without the incredible soundtrack I would have fallen asleep though like my wife did. :-)
426  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Western RPG With Engaging Storyline? on: December 20, 2010, 03:01:50 PM
Baldur's Gate 2, especially since I note you have played Planescape, which used BG2's engine.
427  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Have you "RPG'd yourself out of other genres"? on: December 17, 2010, 01:12:13 PM
It's not an impossible number at all.  It would be if they were 60 hours RPGs yes, but when it's games from across all genres and formats it's easy to finish a couple of games a week.  I also have 5-6 hours of gaming time a night.

And yes I work full-time and have a fiancée too before anyone asks.

Eh, caveats like that aren't necessary IMO. We're here to talk about games, not the best way to spend one's leisure time.

Now that my ballot is in for the Game of the Year voting I was surprised to see I played 13 RPGs that came out in 2010, and I definitely played a few more from previous years that I had missed (SMT DDS1 for example). Being a gamer has never been better IMO just simply due to the overwhelming amount of options that are out there.

As for my own gaming time my wife works later than I do so I typically have an hour or two of time at home (or out) to do whatever - I'd say just under half the time I will spend that playing a game. Weekends it also varies, if I'm really into a game I'll play for a morning or an afternoon. It's the rare game that comes along that has me playing in chunks bigger than 2 hours, that's usually a good sign that I am completely hooked. :-)
428  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Favorite RPGs of 2010 - RPGFan users on: December 17, 2010, 11:39:45 AM
We're setting the ball rolling on our Game of the Year feature.  Personally, I'm more interested in seeing individual editors' top picks than the sitewide ones.  The past few years, we've been doing that double blind so I'm also in the dark as to what other editors put in their top fives.

Same here. Enjoying reading these as well.

It seems like Nier is a game I am going to HAVE to at least try in 2011.
429  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Giant EA iOS Sale on: December 16, 2010, 02:29:12 PM
Man great heads up. I always wondered what was up with that Mass Effect game and then just completely forgot about it.
430  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Have you "RPG'd yourself out of other genres"? on: December 16, 2010, 10:55:49 AM
There are some games that no matter what comes along, I just never seem to stop playing. Rock Band, Torchlight, and Recettear are 3 examples from this past year.

Also I always find some time for MLB the Show, which may as well be called MLB RPG at this point with baseball being your combat engine.

I definitely do not find myself limiting play to only RPGs, but it just so happens that typically I find them the most fun to PLAY, ergo I keep coming back.
431  Media / Brush and Quill / Re: Book Thread Continued on: December 15, 2010, 03:52:39 PM
Reading the Annotated Turing by Charles Petzold. Truly amazing stuff.
432  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What don't you get sick of?? Favorite things!!? on: December 06, 2010, 09:04:15 AM
Waking up in mornings when it isn't daylight savings time and it is dark when I get out of bed, because it means I get to see the sunrise before work.
433  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: So, besides gaming, what you're thing? on: October 29, 2010, 08:28:19 AM
On Mondays I play D&D. The core group of folks I've known for over a decade now and have gamed with them once a week almost as long. We're finishing up the 2nd year of our current campaign that I'm running but usually campaigns go about a year before we switch games.

On Tuesdays right now my wife and I play in a dodgeball league - Delaware Sports League. DSL is a friendly league and we play 2 seasons of dodgeball in fall/winter, then wiffle ball and kickball in the warmer months. Our team has been together now for 5+ years and we're all good friends - I live in what's called "Trolley Square" in Wilmington DE and we can all walk to each other's houses for the most part.

I program for a living and have for 7 years now so I don't do that much of it at home. That's changed a LITTLE bit since joining RPGFan though, as I do find myself on some Saturdays tinkering with the website now that I've got a test copy set up at home.

Somebody mentioned NaNoWriMo and I have completed that twice. I didn't do it last year but plan to do it this year.

It's a cool group here on the board with all these diverse interests. :-)
434  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Shit like this really pisses me the fuck off on: October 29, 2010, 08:21:21 AM
I find it unacceptable for excuses to be made for anyone that murders a baby because it wouldn't stop crying.

And I'm sure a guilty plea has something to say about this. She did not plea insanity or mental incompetency.

Just to make a brief point as I drive through, neither of these things actually signifies much of anything. How to approach the actual case is dependent on way too many factors that we don't have just based on one internet link.

That's all I really have to say about it. My wife is an attorney that has a state contract and often ends up representing folks in exactly this type of case. It ain't pleasant stuff, but it's almost always a hell of a lot more complicated than a short headline and article make it.
435  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Baseball anybody? on: October 13, 2010, 11:49:18 AM
Yes, but I work in albany, and troy is close.  I might check them out after work some time.

My commute blows, but it's govn't work and the pay is good, and these days I'm just happy to have a job at all.

They ever call anybody up from there?

{Edit} so far everything is going just like I thought it would, just waiting for Texas to win and I'll be 4 for 4

The full list is here: http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/roster/page.jsp?ymd=20061012&content_id=137601&vkey=roster_t577&fext=.jsp&sid=t577

The most notable are probably Ben Zobrist and Hunter Pence.
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