Category Archives: Music

It’s a Dead Man’s Party: A Geek’s Look at Dia de Los Muertos

A page from Dia of the Dead-inspired indie comic hero "El Muerto."
Image courtesy of Javier Hernandez.

As a longtime denizen of the Southwest, the traditions of Mexico run heavy, and my favorite has to be Dia de Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead.  What better way to kick off November, and wind down from Halloween than with skeleton-themed cosplay and parties in a graveyard! There is actually more to it than that, but for my story purpose, I’ll keep it brief. Here’s the dime store low-down on what Day of the Dead is, for those still not sure: “Dia de Los Muertos” is Latin America’s answer to All Soul’s DayIn Mexico, Dia De Los Muertos has been part of the Mexican cultural landscape for at least 3,000 years, and has elements of both the “pre-Hispanic” indigenous cultures who displayed various items during certain rituals to symbolize death and rebirth. It is also infused with Christian elements, particularly as it falls at the time of the Catholic observance All Saint’s Day on Nov. 1 in honor of all saints, known and unknown and All Soul’s Day, Nov. 2, … Continue Reading ››

Vikings and Pirates and Accordions Oh My.

B’Ware! Thar be Vikings! Arm the villagers! Hide the young ones! Flee to the country! Find the GPS! Where is my sunblock?! Is there an ATM?! This past Sunday I attended the Vista Viking Festival put on by the Sons of Norway  and Norwegian Fish Club Odin culture communities in dusty, avocado tree filled and back roads winding Vista. Good crap it was hot. But there were pirates and an impromptu accordion lesson. Norse folk were not made this weather. Nor was their historically appropriate full coverage garb. I was smart enough to kick it in a sundress. Had I gone the Faire style route, I may not be writing this to you now. I attend culture and dress up festivals whenever possible.  They’re fun, the people are interesting, you can learn a lot, they are usually cheap (until you find the beer garden) and I will eat just about anything. I don’t even care how they prepped it or what went into it. So long as the Surgeon General didn’t send out a fatwa on it, I’m good. This time, I did not get a single Lingonberry anything ( Scandanavian food staple) and as … Continue Reading ››

Three Things That All Modern Games Think They Need (For Better or Worse)

My new years resolution was to play fewer video games.

I realized this wouldn't be impossible unless I simply loaned out my game consoles.  So I did.  I got a lot done.  And now I got my stuff back because the holiday bum rush of triple-A games are upon us and I couldn't resist.  My gold membership has expired since that time obviously so I am just playing single player games at the moment. I recently got done playing Assassins Creed Brotherhood, followed by Batman Arkham City, and finally a little Gears of War 3.  There was a constant theme I noticed throughout the games that has been coursing through games the past few years, so to most of you this won't be any great revelation.

1) Since when did every hero, assassin, adventurer, etc learn parkour.

If you aren't familiar with parkour go ahead and watch this video (or any other one) and catch yourself up a little. Seriously.  I know parkour blew up a few years ago in the states and then what?  Game developers saw it and said, "Well since everything else in our game is complete fantasy and entirely impossible, we should at least make them move realistically.  I mean come … Continue Reading ››