24 august 2016

Dream Journal 1

I've decided to keep a written record of my dreams (at least the interesting ones), because things got really fucked up lately in my head. Last night was god damn weird, with three different very short dreams.

The first one, the Snakes & Slugs Dream, as I'll refer to it, involved a huge number of colorful snakes and slugs that were running away from rain and water. My grandma was there, and she was admiring the beautiful patterns and shapes of the slugs. I was at the countryside, in the area where I grew up, and a warm summer rain was pouring, but these crawling creatures were desperately trying to escape the water by climbing a hill. At the top, a busy road acted like a barrier, and all the snakes and slugs that crossed it got run over by cars. I felt sad, not scared or grossed out. I remember taking pictures of the snakes with my phone's camera.

The second dream, the Good Alien Nazi & Silent Nuns Dream, was about a German soldier in Poland. But instead of being enemies, the Germans and Poles were allies. I think a war was going on somewhere, but I have no idea with whom. Both armies were having a friendly dinner, and some very silent and disturbing nuns were sitting at the front of the long table, with an odd symbol that signified both a cross and a swastika. Now, in no way am I a Nazi, trust me, but this felt like some sort of alternate dimension version. After the dinner, the soldier and his platoon (I think I was him) was ordered to go on a march. He -- or I -- met a few children while marching, and some were dirty and hungry. Two little boys asked for chocolate, and every time I put my hand in my pocket, new chocolate bars would appear, so the soldiers were able to distribute sweets among all the kids affected by war. I started crying. At the end, my platoon considered this a miracle made possible by the fact that I was actually an alien known as WHY THE SUN.

The symbol the nuns wore.
The third and last dream, the Nuclear Bomb, Blue Marble and White Rat Dream, was extremely disturbing and scary. I think I was a Japanese woman in a modern city, accompanied by my brother. He informed me that a nuclear strike was about to hit us, so we had to find shelter. We got split up for a moment and I found a very large blue marble building, which I thought had some sort of nuclear shelter. Instead, a network of marble chutes took me to the ground floor, where more people were hiding. Now, in my dream, after the bomb hit it took a really long time for the shock wave to develop. It was as if energy was accumulating underground, sending only short bursts of tectonic movement. Then a giant fucking nuclear mushroom erupted and I hid behind a solid slab of concrete inside the edifice. Everything around me was pulverized and I felt the shock wave traversing the city with great speed. When it was over, I quickly used the showers in the basement to scrub off any fallout. While looking for soap, a white rat crossed my path and a voice told me to hide again, but this time on the other side of the slab, because the implosion effect was bringing the shock wave back. I got really scared, almost shaking violently, and I woke up. Pfew.

25 martie 2016

Am spus numai Adevărul (despre gaming)!

Jamming in Bucale'
Pe vremuri am reușit să îi stric de vreo două ori emisiunea lui Cătălin Sturza, Cultura.net, difuzată prin undele RRC. Nu știu cum și de ce a insistat să discutăm. În orice caz, ieri am trecut la nivelul 2 -- ăla video -- și m-am făcut de râs la Adevărul Live. Noroc cu Mircea aka KiMO că a mai salvat din situație. Am vorbit despre jocuri, ne-am învârtit ca două balerine pe scaunele alea confortabile și am fost generally awkward & funky. Înregistrarea emisiunii se găsește mai jos.

25 ianuarie 2016

Our clouds collided

I knew the moment those two clouds collided was special.
It was impossible for it to be a simple coincidence,
Because rarely do nebulae connect in such a manner.
Looking out the window, it seemed like each extended
A pair of white tentacles that got mingled with the other.
Man it looked like Cthulhu found its mate, like a couple of
Octopuses wanted to lose their virginity.
Now, at this point, the train was accelerating pretty fast,
But that pair of clouds got stuck with me forever.
I think it was back in 2014 when this happened,
During that extremely hot and dry summer.
Yeah, she wasn't home with me and it was torrid outside.
Fuck it, she missed the hottest summer there ever was.
When she finally came back, it was already autumn.
I remember playing with a lizard on the stairs of our house,
(We even took a cool photo of the little fellow)
And those two clouds were still watching over us from above.
You know how the sky changes color and how the air
Changes its smell every season? Like you can taste spring,
Autumn, winter or summer – Well that moment felt different.
It had a specific scent, a unique and indescribable vibe.
I bet my ass this was all because of that foamy white
High altitude pair of vapor that got intertwined just to
Suspend my disbelief in magic.

21 ianuarie 2016

A very old column: 4 Reasons Piracy Is A Tradition In Eastern Europe

Eastern Europe. A land terrorized by blood sucking undead and shady politicians. A land forgotten by time, where old men wearing colored T-shirts speak with a guttural voice, their throats gang banged by homemade alcoholic drinks. Even the names of some countries sound similar to a 50's B-grade movie director: Romania. Belarus. Bulgaria. If that wasn't enough, Eastern Europe is ravaged by pirates. Well, not the "Yarrrr!" type. Software piracy is so common around here that it became something like a tradition or a national sport. People are accustomed to downloading illegal copies of movies and games daily, with no fear of legal repercussions. Around here, everyone has a Facebook page directly linked to a torrent account. We download the shit out of everything the West throws at us. But how and why did we Eastern Europeans turn into software buccaneers?

1. Poverty

My monthly income is somewhere around 380$. My wife earns approximately 300$, which is quite okay for Romania, considering the minimal wage is 200$. For those mathematically impaired, that's a total of 680$. We live in a small apartment, with a monthly rent of 200$. We pay almost 130$ for commodities such as electricity, internet subscription, water etc. That's really not that much if you think about it, but keep in mind our total income. Now, Diablo 3 costs 65$. A new computer game costs almost as much as what I would earn if I'd work part time, like most of the students do. If you aren't tired of all this math, imagine that you could buy 100 blank DVD's with the same amount of money, to store your downloaded movies and games FOREVER, till the end of the Internet!

2. Compulsion

We've been doing it for so long it became a reflex, you know, like gagging. When they stick a 60$ price tag down your throat, torrents seem like a good solution. After all, how much damage can one pirated game cause to the Industry? It's not like really stealing something, is it? As a matter of fact, that's exactly how 64% of Romanians think and about 80% of Ukrainians and Belarusians, according to a survey done by the BSA. People point at you and call you names if you buy a genuine copy of Need For Burnout or Crypt Raider. Staying legal is a safe way to condemn yourself to 50 years of exile in some remote gaming communities.

3. Eastern Europe is uncharted territory

Our very existence is still doubted by some big names in the software industry. No one gives a flying fuck about Eastern Europe. Sure, they want you to believe they do, but in truth, they don't. Online support service for sinister countries like Serbia or Moldavia is too scared of vampires and The Lich King to actually work properly and there is no such thing as a "special offer" or "bonus content" available for the awkward commie Europeans. Speaking of communism...

4. Eastern Europeans are a bunch of communists

What is copyright, comrades? After all, do the capitalist pigs deserve our hard earned money? The Internet is for everyone! Equal amounts of porn for every man, woman and twisted, evil, sick grandpa!

Truth be told, our society is still scarred by communism, whether we like it or not. People are reluctant to spend money they could use to buy food or medicine on a piece of software they can so easily download from the comfort of their Transylvanian cold, crypt-like, haunted mansions. Buying a PC implies a huge financial effort around here, so spending even more on software is a ludicrous idea. How is this related to communism?

Well, during the commie regime, people had to do their best with limited resources. The ability to make something out of nothing is even nowadays highly regarded, so there's no surprise eastern Europeans are reluctant to put an end to piracy.

O colecţie de comentarii personale scoase din context

Aşa cum au apărut pe KOTAKU:

"I kinda imagine the Minotaur charging with baby steps. Cute, little baby steps. You know that sound babies make when running barefoot on the kitchen floor tiles? That's what I think this Minotaur sounds and looks like when charging."

"Pill, your poor attempts at philosophy are lame and stupid. You are clearly a moron, judging by your fist slamming the imaginary table of this comment section with strong words like 'fucking' (which, by the way, explains what your brain cells are doing to your scabrous logic)."

"If you eat a cricket and sing the national anthem of Botswana while spanking Jynx Maze, a copy of HL3 will never appear."

"So this is why PornHub has an embed code function..."

29 decembrie 2015

Unele lucruri se scriu, altele nu

A trecut ceva vreme de când am scris. Nu mă refer la materialele pe care le produc pentru NIVELUL 2 (hei, acum avem revistă), ci la scrisul ăla care te zguduie. Creaţia organică nu se pupă cu publicistica în orice punct -- cel puţin aşa văd eu lucrurile.

La început scriam poezie. De la poezie am ajuns la blog şi de la blog la LEVEL. În orice caz, erau versuri născute într-o peşteră rece, plină de şosete murdare şi pachete goale de ţigări. Acolo am auzit pentru prima oară chemarea scrisului. Sună boem şi hipsteresc, dar mi-am stors cele mai puternice emoţii trăite vreodată în poeziile scrise atunci, când dădeam simultan din cur şi cap în cel mai de jos prag. Au rămas la nivelul unor mâzgăleli tatuate pe caiete pătate de timp şi diverse alte substanţe lichide. Ce-i drept, am experimentat apoi scriind versuri inspirate de pasiunea mea pentru automobil, însă Piston Poetry nu mă satisface. Vreau ceva personal şi pur.

Vreau să mă întorc la poezia mea, la lucrurile pe care le scriam fiindcă îmi erau cunoscute în mod nemijlocit. Suferinţa a fost întotdeauna partenera mea de nădejde, iar singurătatea şi senzaţia de "impending doom" îmi sunt surori. Nu m-a salvat din ghearele depresiei nici măcar R., cu tot cu răbdarea şi iubirea ei fantastică -- sentiment pe care îl împărtăşesc. Ce simt eu acum iese din patologic şi intră în altă zonă: o nostalgie mai puternică decât orice tsunami al prezentului.

Distanţa, incertitudinea, regretul, caracterul efemer al memoriei şi imposibilitatea de a împărtăşi cu altcineva toate aspectele trăirilor umane. Iată laitmotivele mele, nici pe departe atât de profunde sau tridimensionale pe cât aş vrea.

Sunt deprimat pentru că mi-am trăit deja cea mai frumoasă vară din viaţă, pentru că nimeni altcineva nu vede frumuseţea unui stâlp de înalta tensiune juxtapus pe un câmp lăsat pradă buruienii, câmp ce se continuă într-un deal sălbatic şi bătut de soare cum numai eu am cutreierat în copilărie.

Un psiholog ar spune că nu mă pot adapta schimbărilor, dar să fiu al dracului dacă cineva ar crede asta după ce observă cât de repede mă integrez în cosmosul unui oraş nou. A, da, tocmai m-am mutat în Braşov. Singur, fiindcă R. munceşte iarăşi în străinătăţuri până prin martie.

Aşa că am de gând să scriu ce, cum şi când îmi place, bine sau prost, util ori inutil. Unele lucruri trebuie musai făcute înainte să fie date uitării.