Azn Badger's Blog

What About the Lysine Contingency…?

Gaming Overload

That's me on the right...

Before I get started, let me just say that, no; the title of this post does not refer to videogames.

It doesn’t refer to board games, sports, or manly shit like Jenga; but rather it refers to the pop culture game that we play at work, henceforth referred to as “The Game.”

For those that are unaware, “The Game” is something we play in the warehouse wherein one person names a fictional character, any fictional character; and the other player responds by citing the name of another fictional character whose name begins with the last letter in the name of the previous mentioned character.

In example:

Player A says “Superman,” wherein Player B would respond with “Naruto” or any other fictional character whose name begins with “N.”

Generally, “The Game” isn’t played to be “won,” rather the objective is to simply keep the game going to stave off boredom.

Despite this, some players choose their “moves” strategically in the hopes of stumping their opponents.

Examples of said tactics are the intentional use of characters whose names end in tricky letters like O, or uncommon ones like X.

Personally, I play by instinct, saying whatever comes to mind; but like I said, there are many ways to play “The Game.”

Anyway, today I engaged in an epic 1-on-1 duel with a coworker, the likes of which I have never encountered up to this point.

We were almost evenly matched, though in all honesty; I’m pretty sure he would’ve beat me if we kept it up long enough.

You see, in previous games I’ve played against people who are generally in the dark about anime, tokusatsu, or any Japanese pop culture in general.

Because of my opponent’s unfamiliarity with those characters, I took it upon myself to refrain from using them, as I felt it would seem sketchy to constantly cite characters who, in the eyes of my opponent; may as well be bullshit.

This time though, my opponent was extremely well-versed in Japanese pop culture, in fact much more so than myself given his vast breadth of anime character knowledge.

Curiously enough, a huge number of the characters he “played” were actually historical figures of the Sengoku era of Japanese history, all of whom make appearances in videogames like Onimusha and the Sengoku Basara series.

While this doesn’t seem like that big a deal, the reason I feel the need to mention this, is the fact that Japanese names totally change the dynamic of “The Game.”

You see, throughout every other match I’ve played previously, the most common letters played on was N.

O’s, X’s, and N’s are traditionally regarded as the most difficult letters to work from, making N a particularly powerful letter in “The Game.”

The thing with Japanese names that makes them so interesting when incorporated into “The Game” however, is the fact that Japanese names frequently end with A’s, I’s and O’s.

Think about that for a minute, how many O’s or I’s do you know?

That’s what I thought.

A huge factor in how “The Game” works, is that players often acquire additions to their “repertoire” through copying the citations of players from previous matches.

Now imagine you’re involved in an epic, 5 hour match; only to find that many of your go-to characters are now irrelevant given the fact their letters never seem to come up.

You read right, 5 fuckin’ hours.

The match was fun for the first few hours, however by the homestretch both my opponent and I were absolutely beat to shit.

Seriously, working an 10 hour day of overtime in a warehouse is enough to wipe me out on it’s own, but that coupled with 5 hours of tearing through the recesses of your mind for one last fuckin’ O name is enough to drive you nuts.

And wouldn’t you know it, that’s just about the truth of what happened to me on the car ride home.

You see, after playing the game for so long, and with such intensity; my thoughts somehow tuned themselves to work from that pattern.

Words, letters, and names from the radio, billboards, and even license plates all caused me to automatically start searching the recesses of my mind for names that began with the same letter they ended with.

I wasn’t trying to do it, it just sort of happened.

It lasted about an hour, and given that my thoughts were somehow working beyond my control; I found myself a little freaked out over it.

Believe me when I say this, the Azn Badger is not one to lose control of himself.

That being said, I don’t see myself playing “The Game” against that guy, for a good long while.

Maybe I’ll play the movie/TV show/videogame title variant of it instead, that’d probably be less strenuous.

Anyway, consider this a cautionary tale for those who might play “The Game” in the future.

Let it be known, too much dorkiness and pop culture will rot your brain…

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In A Wholly Expected Circumstance Of Fate, Something Bad Happened At Work Today!

I should’ve known something was up when I won that Zune yesterday.

As they say, “nothing in life comes free,” and wouldn’t you know it, I ended up paying for a Bill Gate’s take on Jobs’ Ipod with my health and safety.

That’s right folks, after months of slogging it out in the warehouse, the Azn Badger has finally succumbed to the horrors of “wrist strain.”

Hah, had you thinkin’ I got impaled by a forklift or some shit, didn’t I?

You see, today was one of those weird days where everything was almost absurdly slow, to the point in which many people were sent home early.

Despite this, as per the Amazon routine, the last 3 hours of the day were absolute balls to the wall insanity of last minute orders, cancellations, and diapers, lots and lots of diapers…

Being as I am now the resident whipping boy (I’m apparently subbing in for my friend who was laid off not too long ago) of the warehouse, I was of course scheduled to ship during said 3 hours of mayhem and chaos.

With about 2 and a half shipping lines worth of volume bearing down on me, not to mention the hoard of shit-for-brains seasonal workers constantly breathing down my neck with priority packages for me, (DON’T JUST SHOW IT TO ME, LEAVE IT IN THE GODDAMN TOTE ASS-HAT) I think it’s safe to say I was rushing just a bit.

With time being very much of the essence, I found myself reaching back at odd angles to snag packages off the line, which after 2 hours or so; began to ’cause me quite a bit of discomfort.

During the last 30 minutes of the day, I was told to go meander the aisles and pick inventory for the night shift, y’know; like yah’ do.

With barely 15 minutes left in the day I planted my feet and turned my very full picking cart into the main aisle to return it to the staging area, when all of a sudden I felt this “pop” in my wrist.

I felt a sharp pain, stopped in my tracks, and said aloud to myself:

“Oh man, that can’t be good.”

Sure enough, the next time I tried lifting something, a small hardback book; I felt an annoying tinge of pain in my wrist.

Following that, I reported my injury to my manager, as per company regulations; and then got sent off to the nurse’s office just like in elementary school.

Although thankfully I was vomiting or bleeding from my nose like I used to back in the day.

Yeah, the Azn Badger was kind of a sickly child way back when…

Anyway, I mentioned that this all happened in the last few minutes of the work day, right?

Well, as it turns out, getting a case of “wrist strain” at Amazon necessitates an hour long visit with the nurse filling out paperwork and talking over symptoms and treatments.

Now, while I kind of wish it hadn’t taken quite so long, I was honestly quite surprised to learn that my time spent in there counted as being on the clock.

Huh, now that I think of it, maybe getting hurt wasn’t all that bad.

The injury itself is minor at best, plus I just earned 10 bucks for sitting down and having a pleasant conversation with the silly nurse lady. (She’s silly, so I call her the silly nurse lady.  Tee hee.)

Anyway, sorry for the lame post; but be thankful you even got one.

I’m taking this “rehabilitation” crap pretty seriously, to the point in which this entire 600+ word post was written using just my right hand.

That’s dedication…

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