The Narrator

May 10, 2010

The Narrator Always Wins: #11 "I don't even know what I'm drawing" Webcomics don't have to be great. They just have to be good enough. People on the internet will look at anything. "Who are you?" The narrator. "Okay."

Street People

May 2, 2010
Bartholemew: "Uh-oh... street people. I bet they're asking for money." Drake: "Don't make eye contact don't make eye contact" "Hey, he's not making eye contact! After him!" Bartholemew and Drake: "Crap! Run!" "Just because you can't see us doesn't mean we don't exist!!!" Surprise ending: The street people are actually ghosts. "I suppose that last statement could be interpreted multiple ways."

This is just silly.

Facebook Has Made Changes

April 30, 2010

(Cross-posted from my Facebook notes. If you read it there don’t bother with this one. IT’S THE SAME THING, OKAY)

Facebook has made changes.

And, like the stimulus-response automaton I am, I write a note about it.

I’m not actually that peeved about the changes. I value my privacy little to not at all, mostly because I haven’t posted anything that I really care about keeping private. But I don’t see myself using Facebook’s “like” button on every corner of the interwebs, or their new “community” pages. And this realization prompted me to ask myself: what is it that I actually do use Facebook for? And might those activities be better served by something else?

When I think about it, I’m the sort of Facebook user who’s probably really unprofitable. My posts range from irrelevant to arcane — not really the stuff data miners are after. I import half my updates from Twitter, and I access Twitter from an external client, so I am basically seeing no ads at all. I stayed away from the dumb “social” applications that got so many people hooked on Facebook. I liked to keep my personal information, well, personalized. For instance, I cannibalized the “TV shows” field and used it to list my favorite webcomics instead.

And because of all this, and because Facebook is not profiting from me and other users like me, who don’t use their system the way they intend, they are of course not too keen on updating the site in ways that cater to us. Future updates to the site will likely be in the direction of funneling users’ information into a clean, ready-to-sell format–and that means less privacy, and less freedom to customize how you present yourself on Facebook and interact with others.

If there were no alternatives, I could see Facebook being the host to a horde of aggravated users, frustrated with the system but unable to break their addiction. But it turns out, there ARE alternatives, and I don’t need the overhead of the Facebook platform to actually do the things that I use Facebook for.

I use Facebook for three things. Maybe four.
1. I post status updates.
2. I comment on other people’s posts.
3. I post links that I find, and videos, and other such things.
4. Occasionally, I will stalk my friends’ musical preferences or look for their phone number if I need to call them.

And I could accomplish the first three with Twitter, or Buzz. Both of which I am already using.

So despite my basically neutral emotional response to the updates, my cerebral response is:

It’s not going to work out, Facebook.

Yes, I know I stuck with you even though we disagreed about your serial makeovers. But those were largely cosmetic changes, and you even gained some new features that I liked. Threaded comments on every post? Fantastic. But those were the days before Buzz, before there were a million Twitter clients to choose from that had basically every feature imaginable.

Facebook, I’m leaving you.

Again.

Just as soon as I can find someone else who also knows all my friends.

UPDATE: Facebook and I are no longer a thing, really. We still hang out sometimes. If you want to contact me, the best way is via email.

Med School

April 29, 2010

Medical school was not as rigorous as he had hoped it would be.  They still had to use their hands and eyes and other imperfect parts of the imperfect human body.  "I am so friggin sleep deprived"

Pie Chart

April 28, 2010

People who figure out how this chart works while looking at this color:

Platypus, Pt. 5

April 25, 2010
Leeroy: "Basil! Long time no see.  What brings you here?" Basil: "There's this cute guy platypus who's been hanging out here recently..." Leeroy: "Are you going to ask him out?" Basil: "No..." Leeroy: "Why?!" Basil: "That is like saying: "I don't know you but I think we could be great friends and have a unique relationship.  The reason I think this is because you are hot." Yeah, no."

Propaganda

April 15, 2010
Leeroy: "In certain sitcoms, everyone acts normally, except for the main character!" Hal: "He (usually male) is constantly breaking social conventions - doing and saying ridiculous things! And while it's funny to watch, things don't often turn out well for him!" Leeroy: "Indeed.  So by showing people stepping out of bounds, these shows are actually saying STAY IN LINE.  This has been another episode of subtle propaganda embedded in comics I mean television shows."

I notice that these captions are usually funny. MAYBE YOU SHOULD BE LAUGHING RIGHT NOW.

Procrastination

April 11, 2010

The Narrator Always Wins #9: Uggh...need to do work... but can't stop reading webcomics.  Oh hey, that's the last one! Awesome! [But victory is tainted:] I only read them so could tweet about it.  What am I doing

Ice Cream

April 8, 2010
Hal: Four bucks for an ice cream cone? Hells no! Bartholemew: Well, you get more than just ice cream... Bartholemew: When you buy an ice cream cone, you're not just buying a delicious treat, you're buying a cultural icon! A symbol of youth and summer and relaxation, along with an experience that you share with millions of other ice cream eaters! It is the quintessential American treat. Hal: What about when your ice cream falls in the sand? Bartholemew: Well, that is the quintessential American tragedy.

I would have found this comic greatly upsetting when I was little. Apologies to any children I have scarred.

Ninjas

April 6, 2010

[Returning to the room, he suddenly feared ninjas.] What if they are hiding behind my door? [Cautiously, he entered.] Whew, there's no one here. [But then, too late:] Oh crap, I forgot to check the ceiling! [The paranoia was not dispelled.] I won't look up now because I would prefer not to die terrified.