Friday, October 24, 2008
...Then you are all kinds of stupid. No, you are not having a stroke, that is the cover of "Wii For Dummies". A Dummies book for a gaming console so idiot proof that a stiff breeze can play most games.
Perhaps I am being too harsh. Perhaps there are helpful hints within the 300 pages of this glorious guide to gaming. Wisdom gems like:
Learn to use the controllers, create a Mii, download new games, and more!
* Hook it up — connect the Wii to your TV, home entertainment setup, or high-speed Internet connection
*Gain control — get familiar with Wii's unique controllers and learn to use the Nunchuk, Balance Board, Wheel, and Zapper
*Start channeling — explore the Wii Channels where you can shop for new games, check the weather forecast, check the news, and even watch videos
*Your Mii character — create avatars you can share, enter in contests, and use in games
*Who needs a personal trainer? — learn to use your whole body as a controller and get fit while you play
*Find winning strategies — get tips for success with Wii Sports tennis, golf, baseball, bowling, and boxing
*Something for everyone — discover the best games for parties, family events, nostalgia buffs, and even non-gamers
I thought "Perennials For Dummies" was as low as the Dummies bar would go. I grossly underestimated them.
Perhaps this book should be a litmus test for life. If you buy it for yourself, then the sales clerk who rings you up, or the FedEx driver who delivers it, has to take you for immediate sterilization. Because if you buy this book, you are the wrong kind of stupid.
Besides the gifuckinggantic clusterfuck on Wall Street proper, there is:
- The U.S. Treasury Dept. redacting bailout contracts (which does wonders for consumer confidence).
- Greenspan wondering where the free market, and his worldview, went wrong.
- John McCain might be the real socialist.
- Iceland is going broke
- The Canadian dollars drops like a stone
- There is no bottom is sight, but in a good way
I might be wrong (and I usually am), but there have to got be a lot of MAs and Ph.Ds to be won from examining this mess. And maybe then people could look at what happened in the past (our present) and learn from it. Sort of like Greenspan didn't.
Somebody should try that with the historians working right now. I bet they might have something to say. That is if they can get off their high-horses and offer some sensible policy options and not just look at why people with gerbils are more likely to return lost wallets.
Until those tomes and treatises come out and elucidate our failings, take comfort again in the words of Freewheelin' Franklin:
Just substitute "dope" for the past time of your choice (gaming, beer, masturbation, whatever), and you are good to go.
And what does the Friday morning inbox reveal? Why an e-mail from Paul Davenport, President and Vice-Chancellor of my alma mater, The University of Western Ontario. I suppose he is shilling for more money...wait! What's this?
"For the seventh consecutive year, Western can lay claim to providing the best student experience among Canada’s largest research-intensive universities, based on the results of the Globe and Mail’s Canadian University Report released today.
The survey - conducted in association with the Strategic Counsel and the Educational Policy Institute - reflects the opinions of more than 43,000 students from 55 Canadian universities who answered some 100 questions about their university experience.
Western received the only ‘A’ grade for overall student satisfaction among its 16 peer universities (more than 22,000 students). Western was also rated first by students for quality of education, again scoring the only ‘A’ among its peer universities in this category.
Additionally, Western ranked first in its class in the following categories:
- Most satisfied students... A
- Quality of education... A
- Quality of teaching... A-
- Course availability/variety... A-
- Buildings and facilities... A-
- Student residences... A-
- Campus atmosphere... A
- Extracurricular activities... A
Our students and alumni know best that Western provides an exceptional learning environment that combines strong academics, first-class research, and countless opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities. And while the report shows many areas where Western should improve (and we are committed to doing just that) we can allow ourselves a moment to enjoy a sense of pride in what we have achieved together - students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends.
I encourage you to read the report for yourself, available online at www.globecampus.ca using the Campus Navigator Tool."
Now that is interesting. I wonder how Western would compare to two random schools, like Queen's and the University of Calgary?
Ouch. I guess that oil money hasn't filtered through to the U of C yet. Which is weird, considering how much water they carry for the provincial and federal conservatives.
So let's celebrate a largely irrelevant study and sing that old fight song! And it's a doozy.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
So rev up the truck honshui, and enjoy what you love best, pot-stirring shit disturbers!
"Larry Herzberg has taught Chinese language and culture at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan for the past 25 years. His wife, Qin Xue Herzberg, is a native Chinese who grew up in Beijing and was educated at Beijing Normal University. For the past ten years she has also taught Chinese language and culture at Calvin College. During the summers of 2005 and 2006, they traveled around China to find answers to the basic questions that have troubled their students about China for the past few decades, such as: Will China become a democracy any time soon? How severe and cruel is the so-called "one-child policy? How much religious freedom is there really in China when there are so many "underground churches" and we hear about the persecution of church leaders? They also sought to discover what effect the tremendous economic growth of late in China has meant for the lives of individual Chinese people. The couple conducted interviews with Chinese people from different walks of life, including college professors and other educators, free-thinking writers and intellectuals, marriage and family experts, and religious leaders, but also peasants and migrant workers and shop clerks. The film also features extensive video footage of daily life in China, a rising superpower in today's world. The result is this 60-minute documentary film called "China Today: Issues that Trouble Americans at the Start of the 21st Century." Our hope is that this will correct some of the distorted impressions Americans have about contemporary China and lead to a greater understanding of life in the world's most populous country."
China Today from Calvin College on Vimeo.