Wednesday, May 14, 2008

What's Up Wednesday - May 14, 2008

My life is just a cavalcade of stuff. Here are three examples of the most notworthy things that have come into my life this week.

The Video Game: I upgraded the computer's memory and video card with some of my income tax rebate, and since I had quite a bit left over from my alloted budget, I picked up a copy of Civilization IV: The Gold Edition as icing on the computery cake. I love the Civilization series of games; I started with II, and when III came out it was just such a giant leap forward I was in shock. I wasn't expecting that kind of shock again, though. But I really should have. Seriously: Civilization IV is one of my favourite video games ever, which puts it in a very small list with the likes of EarthBound, Super Mario Bros. 3, and Tetris. It is a joy to play; it doesn't come with a manual so you basically have to figure it out as you go along, something that I find both frustrating and exciting. There are so many different aspects of the game, I don't think I'll explore all of them for at least a year. Plus, there's an expansion I'm itching to try. But I'll wait for this experience to sink in first. If you haven't already played it, people, get Civ 4. You'll be glad you did.

The Book: While reading up on the Summer and Fall movie slates, I came across a brief summary of a movie called Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist. It was billed as "High Fidelity for the iPod Generation" and is going to star Michael Cera, which piqued my interest, so I tracked down the book to give it a whirl. It's a young-adult book, which made me a little nervous, but I've read YA books before and enjoyed them just fine. This one, though, I didn't. The plot was kind of lame, full of teenage problems I couldn't identify with and probably couldn't have fourteen years ago either. And the fact that it was co-written gave me another headache; while I liked the style of Norah's chapters (written by Rachel Cohn), I really disliked Nick's (written by David Levithan), so much so that I came to dread the last page of Norah's chapters. Overall, I would NOT recommend it, but maybe if you're an emo-loving teenager or early-twenty-something, it will speak to you.

The Real Life: I went to see the soccer match between the Vancouver Whitecaps and the LA Galaxy yesterday, along with about 37,000 other people. Unlike most of those people, though, I did NOT go to see David Beckham. Which wasn't too bad, actually. After a gong-show-like first five minutes (the Galaxy's goalie was laughably inept), it all settled down for a good match. We mocked the crowd who cheered every time Beckham went close to the ball ("Oh my god, a famous person is touching the ball!" "Posh Spice's wife is going in for a free kick!"), and had a good time. Until the 75 minute mark, when Beckham went off the field and people started leaving the stadium in droves. It made me a little upset, but then again, I went to the soccer match to see the soccer match. I must have been crazy.


Jago said...

Wasn't there a documentation disc that came in the Civ4 package? I'm pretty sure that's where my instruction manual was.

Ryan Ro said...

No offense, Devin, but the entire draw of the match was Beckham. There's no reason for the Whitecaps and Galaxy to play in Edmonton "just for kicks." The celebrity/curiosity factor regarding Beckham is a huge draw and a tool to try to get North Americans into the sport. Without Beckham, this match does not happen in Alberta and maybe not even Vancouver, since the Caps are not an MLS team.

It's a little much to act so derisively about Beckham or the people who "didn't come to watch a soccer game." It's perfectly acceptable that the majority of the fans came to see Beckham and got excited when he touched the ball. He was possibly the only player they recognized at all. How is it wrong for a sports crowd to react when a superstar takes the puck or ball? Your comments are uncharacteristically arrogant and elitist.

The Doc said...

Jago, there may be an instruction manual on the special edition disc, but I haven't looked at it. Good call. Then again, I think it's just as much fun trying to figure it out on my own than looking over the manual.

Ro, while I stand by my original points, I think my tongue-in-cheek attitude hasn't come through. I was definitely trying to poke fun, not vent my righteous indignation. That being said: the situation does seem a bit absurd to me. For instance, I don't know of many people who don't like a certain genre of music who would go see an artist who performs it simply because he or she is famous. That seems just as silly as the Beckham-mania. But if three people walk away from that match as soccer fans, then they did their job. I just think that the overreaction to him, just because he's a celebrity, was a little much. Then again, I've been accused of being elitist before in other instances, so maybe you're right.

Fiona said...

I understand the Beckham draw. I admit it was what pulled me in initially, but then again, I like soccer in general and I had a good time even after he (gasp!) left the field. I'm going to guess that the young lady sitting behind us who, 2 minutes into the game laughed and said "This is like, so boring!" probably is not as big a fan as that.