dorchadas: (Majora A Terrible Fate)
AIM is shutting down December 15th.

I'm not one of the people who still use AIM. For a while I kept it running through Pidgin for the last couple of people that I used to talk to on it, but they either drifted away or moved to other services. After a few months without a single message, I stopped loading it up, and never bothered installing it when I replaced my computer. Whatever chat logs I had are long since gone.

But so much of my life has been conducted through AIM. All the social planning when I was at university, talking to friends on weekday nights before text messages were free, people I met online or through my pre-MMO gaming days, like the first online freedom RP I ever participated in (check the character page and guess who I was!) or the Neverwinter Nights persistent server I joined for a while.

AIM was how I met [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd, and most of how we kept in contact when we weren't playing World of Warcraft.

I haven't even thought of it in months. I do all my chatting now through Facebook messenger, Gchat, or just iMessage because my phone is always with me. It's more convenient and I'm not tied to my computer. But this, added with Photobucket's self-inflicted demise or Livejournal's transformation, it's a reminder that even though people say the Internet is forever, that's not true. Especially when so much of the internet is corporate territory that they can shut down or change beyond recognition at any time, without any warning. The Internet already is the cyberpunk dystopia that we were promised, corporate fiefdoms and all. Emoji Scrooge Capitalism

I should get the AIM log-on and log-off sounds and put them on my phone.
dorchadas: (Grue)
As a general rule, I prefer to be alone. Parties and events on weekends make me nervous because my usual unwinding time from work gets interrupted and also because I spend time dreading their approach as an interruption of my usual alone time. That's not to say that I don't have fun when I get there, because I do, but the thought process I have before hand is "Ugh, that's right, I'm going to [X] this weekend. There goes my Saturday night."

That said, I might be approaching things the wrong way:
This mistaken preference for solitude stems partly from underestimating others’ interest in connecting (Experiments 3a and 3b), which in turn keeps people from learning the actual consequences of social interaction (Experiments 4a and 4b). The pleasure of connection seems contagious: In a laboratory waiting room, participants who were talked to had equally positive experiences as those instructed to talk (Experiment 5). Human beings are social animals. Those who misunderstand the consequences of social interactions may not, in at least some contexts, be social enough for their own well-being.
That line about "underestimating others’ interest in connecting" really hits home with me, because I almost never initiate a conversation over an electronic medium due to worrying about bothering the other person. I'm a lot better about it in the age of texting, because there's an understanding now that texting is asynchronous in a way that IMing never really was, but I still don't carry on nearly the same number of conversations online as a lot of people seem to.

And reading this article, I ended up thinking of some of the times people have randomly talked to me on the CTA. And while I get extremely annoyed about things like people talking on their phones on mass transit, and even conversations nearby bother me because those old images of everyone reading the newspaper and ignoring each other is my idealized commute, I have to admit that CTA conversations run about 50/50. Some of them are people bothering me when I'm trying to read, and that almost always just annoys me. But some of them are people chatting when I'm just wasting time on my phone, and those I end up enjoying despite myself.

The incident that springs to mind was a bunch of obviously drunk people making nuisances of themselves and playing around on the CTA, until one of them sat next to me, ignored my attempts to rebuff him, and we eventually got to chatting about why they were Chicago (they were glassblowers) and what they were doing on the CTA (they were attending the SOFA expo at Navy Pier). I actually enjoyed the conversation, and alighted at my stop after having written down the dates of SOFA for the next few years so I'd know about it if I wanted to attend as a guest.

That also ties into something else I sometimes think about, which is the desire to have (some) other people force through one's barriers to talk to you. If someone tries to initiate a conversation and keeps trying to talk even in the face of reluctance, it proves that they are actually interesting to talking to you and not just putting on a front for the sake of politeness, whereas if you initiate a conversation with someone else you have no such reassurance. But that doesn't work in reverse, and badgering people to talk is certainly more likely to get them to only chat out of politeness while actually thinking badly of you (and they have no way of accessing your inner life), so often I end up talking to no one even when I'd like people to talk to me.

The Hedgehog's Dilemma. It's a thing.
dorchadas: (Zombies together!)
Damn them and their thieving ways.

Today is my and [ profile] softlykarou's year anniversary! Yay! It certainly doesn't seem that long...I remember when she was just a person on the other end of the IM texting me. It doesn't seem that long ago...

Following [ profile] greyselke, here's my Japanese name:

My japanese name is 中島 Nakashima (center of the island) 陸 Riku (land).
Take your real japanese name generator! today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Name Generator Generator.

dorchadas: (Zombies together!)
I cleaned my room! There is nothing on the floor anymore, my bookshelves are neat and tidy and everything is visible (no more two-rows deep to hold all the books). Now I just have to vacuum and dust more. The shelves and the dresser are dusted, but there are probably other places that need it.

My visit with [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd was quite long (eight days), and a lot of stuff happened that isn't that exciting to recount, as is usual. Mostly just playing games, her knitting while I played games, me reading while she played games, and so on, so I will recount the highlights here.

The first highlight--and the one that made me feel kind of bad--is that her family got me Christmas/Chanukah presents. Several of them, actually. A wok set, including four rice bowls and four sets of chopsticks, four miso bowls, and a metric fuckload of candy, including neat stuff like ginger candy and muscat gummies (whatever the hell those are). Oh, and gelt. The reason I felt bad is because I wasn't expecting nearly that much (and it's not counting what [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd got me). I got them Frango mints, which were worth perhaps a bit more than usual due to Marshall Field's being bought by Macy's, but still--it's just mints. Then again, they probably didn't expect anything, so...

I beat Halo. [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd's brother owns an X-box, so I figured it was my chance. I can see why people liked it so much (and I do want to go back and try it on Legendary now...), but it wasn't the BEST FPS EVAR like I've heard. The quotes from the Covenant were hilarious, though, and I now have a better background on Red vs. Blue. Slightly. One more gamer milestone down.

As my previous post mentioned, I managed to avoid getting horribly burned on New Year's. [personal profile] schoolpsychnerd and I went to one of her friend's family farm for a party, and when midnight rolled around, we decided to set off fireworks. Unfortunately, one of the fireworks did not go up before it exploded. No one was seriously hurt, and only one person was even hit, and it was only a glancing blow that led to a scorched jacket and singed hair. An enormous green spark went by about six inches from my head, though. It was very exciting, for a moment.

We played Karaoke Revolution, too! I have discovered I'm pretty good, as long as I don't sing funk. I totally lack any ability to sing funk, which I guess should not be that surprising.

We saw Memoirs of a Geisha in the theatre...which was okay. I didn't like it that much. It was incredibly pretty (and Zhang Zi Yi is hot), but...that's all it was. I didn't get any sort of feeling of emotion from the movie, no matter what happened on the screen. The book was much better at evoking emotion, at least from me.

And we watched a bunch of anime and hung out. It was wonderful ^_^


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