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Audiobooks, man.

I recently signed on for Audible at the suggestion of a friend. Now, I should start by saying this is not an add for Audible. I like it fine and the library is good, but you could legitimately use whatever audiobook service you prefer for all I care. Who am I to tell you what to do? Live your life. Jerk.

Anyway, to return to my original statement: Audiobooks, man. They’re great. I was always hung up on the idea of like listening to a book. In my mind it always felt like more of an achievement if I actually read the book instead. Also, I never really saw an opportunity to just pop on a book and press play. It’s definitely not something I can do for background noise, since that really defeats the purpose. However, I never really traveled long distances by myself nor have I had much of a commute, both of which are when a lot of people engage audiobooks. When I do go out of town, it’s typically with someone else, often my wife, and I’m a talker. I never really felt motivated to listen to audiobooks while cleaning as I typically need a peppy upbeat soundtrack to get me going. All in all, I just didn’t see when I’d have the time to let someone read a book for me aside from time that I could use to just read a book myself.
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Halloween is approaching: a time when all manner of ghost, ghoul and monster crawl their way from the deep abyss of our fears to roam the mortal realm in search of their next fright. It’s also a time of year where Diabetes awareness gets sidelined. Spooky stuff.

In the spirit of the Holiday, I wanted to bring something up. Namely, I wanted to discuss the single scariest monster of all the catalog of monsters. One that has lumbered his way through American history, always looming just out of sight and evading capture.

That’s right.

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Putting the “Camp” in “Campy Slasher Flick”

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A classic in the Horror genre of films is the Slasher sub-genre. Anybody who is even fairly familiar with horror movies might recognize the concept of a slasher film: stalking psychopath terrorizes group of protagonists and viciously murders them, often in creative or convenient ways. This sub-genre itself has spawned many of the tropes and patterns often attributed to the horror genre as a whole, such as the whole “rules” concept presented in detail in the Scream series.

In the past, I’ve had to introduce friends and acquaintances to horror movies. I have watched an absolute ton, as horror is by far my favorite genre of just about any media, but not everybody has been so keen on horror for most of their lives, maybe occasionally seeing some mainstream fair but not much more. As such, I have an arsenal of films to introduce people to different elements of horror, from the seriously artful to the campy and ridiculous. When it comes to slasher films, there is only ONE clear choice as to which sadistic murderer needs to be the first one to stab their way into a newbie’s heart.
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Breaking Coverage: Shippin’ Out to West Coast

Occasionally, a cover comes along that just perfectly summarizes the direction the comic market is going oh so perfectly.

Case in point, Marvel and this week’s cover to West Coast Avengers #1.

West Coast

Let’s look at the characters on that scooter, real quick:

Hawkeye (Kate Bishop) = Solo Title – Cancelled – Last Issue 3/7/18

Gwenpool = Solo Title – Cancelled – Last Issue 2/28/18

America Chavez = Solo Title – Cancelled – Last Issue 2/28/18

Quentin Quire = Team Series (Generation X) – Cancelled – Last issue 2/21/18

Fuse = Brand new to the series, was also in Kate Bishop’s solo series (?)
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Cruise Contrarian

So, I catch a lot of guff from friends and family alike for one ridiculous reason: I am staunchly opposed to the idea of going on a cruise.

There are quite a few reasons for this. First, the sheer amount of disasters that can occur on a cruise is fairly large. Everywhere from fires to overturning to diseases, the list looks like the board that Roland Emmerich throws darts at to get ideas for a new picture. And everyone always tells me “Oh, don’t worry, that stuff rarely happens.” YEAH. Have you SEEN the recent news stories about cruises? Just last week, ANOTHER Princess Cruise liner was hit with a Gastrointestinal Outbreak, which apparently is becoming fairly common on this particular line of cruise ships. Between this and the ships that have navigated into storms or caught fire or just outright SUNK, the news for cruise ships is not good. As of the day I write this, the world’s largest cruise ship is officially launching out of France. Can only imagine what kind of H.P. Lovecraft horror awaits those brave idiots.

And that transitions nicely into my next point: at the risk of sounding like a cynic, a hermit or good ol’ Hank Thoreau, Large groups of people annoy and terrify me. I have only recently become fairly decent with large crowds mainly due to my love of sporting events, concerts and the most Magical Place on Earth, the Epcot Food and Wine Fest. What frightens me about crowds is mostly paranoia, but rightly so, again considering the media coverage we have on things like shootings and bombings happening across the world. These tragedies are very real, and though I don’t use them as an excuse to shelter myself away forever, it is in my opinion a reasonable detail of real life to keep at the forefront on my perception. As should anyone, honestly. An awareness in a crowded place that someone might do something crazy could potentially help prevent said crazy thing. However, if this awareness becomes straight out paranoia, then maybe you should take a step back, pop a chill pill and go see what’s being served at the Ireland booth (because I guarantee it’s some fantastic freakin’ pudding).

Now it’s when we put this large crowd in a confined space, adrift at sea. Here is a quote that has rung true for me all my life:

A truly close-minded life motto taken from an unlikely source, but it is painfully true more often than not. Panic and the chaos that comes with it terrify me. I am a very anxious person, and this results in a mild sense of paranoia that results in a firm and solid understanding of my surroundings. As a kid, I always had a plan in every classroom of what I would do if someone came in with a gun. I do the same things in crowds. I watch people everywhere I go, not out of an assumption someone is going to shoot me, but out of a general need to gauge those around me to know my surroundings thoroughly. Honestly, this has made me an asset when my friends and I go out to bars and whatnot, for various reasons ranging from “yo, she cute” to “those guys are about to fight.”

In the end, the thought of being confined in the event of an emergency terrifies me. Being surrounded by panic and having nowhere to go. Cruises are a powder keg that my anxious, paranoid mind can’t handle.

Also, I just general don’t like the idea of being covered in my or other people’s shit, and let’s be real, that’s the turn MOST of those news stories take…

Anywho, that’s my opinion on cruises. I am too irrationally paranoid to handle them.