Cool Things: The Revenge

ss_ffIt’s been a good long time since I posted a blog entry about the cool things that cheer me up, hasn’t it?  Although I started this blog as a way of charting my rise in spirits after the blackest depression of my life, its original subtitle was “for all the little things that keep me going” (before I put in the current joke about cats), and so posting about the things that make me happy made sense back then.

You’ll be pleased to know that all the things I’ve posted in this category still delight me in their own ways — see, they weren’t just random things I happened to be thinking about at the time:

  • I pet strange people’s dogs whenever I get the chance — it’s one of the few things I can do when visiting my folks in Worthing (such as this weekend just gone, in which I petted more than my fair share along the beach walk);
  • I rewatched both seasons of Space Battleship Yamato during my daily commutes in 2015, when I was in the early, scary stages of the two jobs I did that year (and, as you know, watched the whole of Gatchaman after the second season);
  • At night I’ve been reading through my old Judge Dredd comic strips, including numerous appearances by the dreaded Four Dark Judges, who were my gateway into the franchise;
  • Naturally, having finished the classic Doctor Who, I’ve continued watching the 21st-century seasons (interspersed with Torchwood), and aim to get the later seasons in Blu-ray format.

But what’s the most significant to me?  It’s not Beavis and Butt-head, which I watched through in 2013 and continue to quote amusing lines from with “best mate”; I’ve still got the series, but like the Doctor’s parents, they “sleep in my mind” for now.  It’s also not thunderstorms, because there still just aren’t any for me to watch — though if one starts while I’m at work, I can always fink off to the top floor and get a nice panoramic view of London…

And, believe it or not, it’s not Gwar, despite the ludicrous amount I go on about them in these hallowed pages, and despite the fact that putting their music on shuffle is my default fallback position when I run out of new music to listen to during the walking parts of my commute.  It’s not even Eminem, the guy whose example has encouraged me to keep trying after all these years (and who I’ll be playing in my mother’s car at some point this year, as I’m putting the finishing touches to three mix-CDs of his music).

No, the most significant of the “cool things” I’ve nominated in this blog so far is… Amnesia: The Dark Descent.  The scariest video game of all time (though Outlast comes a close second), one of the few things that can genuinely terrify me… but it’s not so much the game itself (though I occasionally replay it) as the music, which I, er, continue to use as my morning alarms, and have done for virtually as long as I’ve owned a smartphone in 2012 — the year that marked the beginning of my journey.

At the moment I wake with Chris Evans on the radio at 7am every working day, only to be jerked back to wakefulness 15 minutes later when my phone plays the “screaming madness” sound effect that means a Gatherer has seen you and is running towards you, and at the weekend I have the “nice” music (from the “blue room” at the back of the castle you reach just after being pursued by the invisible water monster), and don’t expect me to change either any time soon.

(I even have a Gatherer’s growl as the notification noise for my mother texting me from her mobile… sorry, Mumsy!)

Phew!  I’m not sure why I stopped these posts back in late 2014, unless it was simply that I was in a very, very bad place during my early career change days, and have only just recovered now (or only just realised that I’d already recovered).  Well, I guess I’ll have to get back into the habit of telling you goons about all the little things that make me happy…

But what can I focus on next?  The Mass Effect games, Game of Thrones, the works of Stephen King (especially the Dark Tower series), the music of Prince (which, as you know, I was collecting before he died — does that make me a hipster?!)… I’ve been watching South Park during my daily commutes, but I still catch new episodes of Family Guy even if I’ve stopped watching it (and American Dad!) every night since BBC3 went off the air… and I still watch old Columbo episodes at the weekend… oh, decisions, decisions!

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