The Mating Dance.

I must perform the Mating Dance.
The Mating Dance is inside me.
The girls love my Mating Dance.
It drives my loins to loving.
But, you don’t understand
The Power of the Mating Dance.
It is powerful, like the moon,
the sun, or the stars.
It drives my loins to loving.
The girls love my Mating Dance.
It is what keeps me dancing
long into the night, long after
Others have long before begun
The Sleep of Those who do Not
Understand the Mating Dance.
The mating dance is inside me.
I must perform the Mating Dance.

The Girl

She looketh like the
If the Sun looked like
Gerald Ford she did.
She is beautiful, like the sun,
Or the Moon,
But you cannot understand.
True beauty lies beneath
The face which looks like
Gerald Ford hers.
I say Hello, and she
Acts like she does not know me.

She looketh like the Moon,
If the Moon looked like
A squirrel she did.
Her cheeks could hold a
Thousand acorns
And her tiny eyes
And cheeks specked with
Freckles and moles
Which call out to me
Even though her mouth
Speaketh restraining order.
She comes in
With her beautiful, rosy
And then she leaveth.
I am sad.

She looketh like the stars
If the stars looked like
Shigeru Miyamoto she did.
She is so very Asian
And yet looketh like a man.
A manly man.
And she wears her anime clothes
Like a badge of Asianness.
And I say hello to her,
And she cannot hear me.
Thank God.

The Gilded Luigiian House

By Rick Lego, Senior Correspondent

This year, Luigiville celebrates a milestone: ten years. That’s ten years of the Lego city, ten years of Governor Depoy… and ten years of war, infighting, housing shortages, food shortages, insurgencies, and inadequate government services and healthcare.

Now, of course I’m not blaming Depoy. Oftentimes, this city has been under the attack not due to Depoy’s unusually geeky countenance and difficult personality, but due to flack taken due to war between Bowserlandians and Mariolandians. The Bowserlandians attack Luigiville, Marioland’s biggest allies, because–well–we’re the big ones, the powerful ones, those with freedom and strength, and we help to attack Bowserland. It’s not all Governor Depoy’s fault that there’s not any house to live in or hospitals; after all, we simply couldn’t pay for them.

Where Depoy goes wrong is in his ignoring the consequential whenever he does anything. Take a look at these new houses: beautiful, white-faced structures that are big, roomy and–have no roofs. Houses with no stairs. Grocery stores with plenty of wall but no merchandise. Depoy attempts to get enough, but always seems to turn up short on big things.

And now, of course, due to my attacks, he tries to put a smiley face on a terrible situation. He now says that all new houses will be “double packed”. What that means: Each house will be filled to double what it was designed for. Not enough homes? Then fill up every one we’ve got.

The houses currently built are supposed to be better, but they’re unbelievably expensive. 90,000 legoleons for a house barely large enough for two bedrooms? 300,000 legoleons for a new City Hall? How about 50,000 legoleons for a Governor’s Mansion?

The new structures will have unbelievable features too. Bedstands for every room, one and a half baths per house, fully stocked, stoves, sinks, chairs–and, instead of building with the bricks we already have, new ones, direct from Lego. Wow, incredible. Bedstands when the people don’t even have homes?

Finally, Governor Depoy has begun work on even more, including cars to sell, factories, stores (most of which will almost certainly be filled with residents from the very beginning, rather than being used for merchandise) and all sorts of other opportunities. It all sounds so beautiful. But I can’t help but feel that it’s like putting tinsel on a coatrack: You can do it as much as you want, but it’s still a coatrack, you can’t put ornaments on it, and there aren’t enough branches to hold the whole thing up. Governor Depoy can put all the furniture and features into these houses as he wants, but in the end, they’re still not enough–after all, you can’t put people into cupboards, and there won’t be enough houses to put it all in.

In short, I’m underwhelmed by Depoy’s response to our problems. Instead of attacking the real and looming housing shortage, he fancies himself a furniture builder and builds bedstands of beauty. Until he stops putting gilt onto these already gilded Luigiian houses, that’s all he can do.

CompuReview: Lego Digital Designer

Lego is a troubled company. Since its release of the famous Lego brick in the 1950s, the company has faced serious competition from other toys on the market, especially the video game craze which has been going on since the eighties. And, of course, since its bread and butter is the Lego brick, its forays into computer games and other areas has been somewhat mixed.

Enter Lego Digital Designer (LDD), its newest attempt at making something akin to a computer Lego program. It is, of course, supposed to be similar to AutoCAD and many other (freeware) Lego programs on the market, including (most importantly) LDraw, a Lego CAD program.

Now, of course, I’ve used LDraw, both on its own and with MLCAD, an addon to the LDraw software. I’ve also used other systems, and each has its own style. For example, LDraw’s LEdit software is very much undeveloped, and makes the user move the bricks using his keypad. MLCAD uses an unusual four-pane system (with front, right, top, and isometric views). Some–including LDraw and LDD–use an isometric system alone.

Each has its own specific pros and cons. LEdit is probably the most intuitive interface, with very simple controls. However, it’s also very slow, and it can be extremely tedious. MLCAD’s four-pane system works very well, and allows the user to easily see where a brick will go. And LDD is generally fastest to use. Not only that, but LDD lets you automatically buy bricks from Lego’s website.

In terms of features, MLCAD has the most, including programs specifically designed to provide screenshots (like POVRay); LDD has the least by far, including a user-interface that is so simple as to be tedious in the extreme: I could live with LDD’s lack of features, but unfortunately, the program is very difficult to use. Because so little is left for the user to do, you also can’t fix its annoying problems, which are many and widespread: pieces don’t fit together properly, especially tiles and unusual pieces; they go behind walls; the program crashes without warning, and has no file retrieval (meaning that if you don’t save regularly, you’re out of luck); and it gives you little or no control over where the pieces go. For example, if you try to put a brick in a certain place and it won’t fit, you have to rotate the screen to try to find a viewpoint that will tell the program to put it in that place. If it still doesn’t fit, you have to remove pieces. And sometimes, nothing will work, and you have to live with parts askew.

Now that isn’t to say that LDD is the worst program of the three. MLCAD, for example, is a bear to install, and LDraw is far too difficult for children to use. In some ways, LDD is best for kids (although I wouldn’t recommend kids using any of these programs).

I have no idea how well Lego is at actually giving you these parts. They’re supposed to, but I haven’t received mine yet. For now, let me say this: The site doesn’t inform you that debit cards are allowed (they are), and it seems to take awhile for them to get the parts to you. This wait I’ve experienced is close to that by sellers on Bricklink, and is annoying, considering that parts are just as expensive, despite being firsthand, and despite the fact that you have a greater range of parts (some new) on Bricklink.

If you really want a program and don’t know much about the inner workings of a computer, choose LDD. If you don’t want to mess with Lego’s parts lists and difficult system of actually buying your parts, use MLCAD. That is of course assuming you can install it. And once you do, give Bricklink a try before you try out the Lego method.

Smashing Through The Snow, Ever So Slowly

Day 17.

It’s been, like, a million years since I was last able to leave our house. I remember it so clearly. My grandmother and I went to BigLots, because she had wanted to go there.

Then it happened.

Not the snow. No, that would happen days after. Christmas happened. I remember Christmas, though vaguely. It was around five o’ clock, and I get out of bed. Notice I do not say “wake up.” This is because I had been unable to sleep due to stomach pains which left me throwing up more than what I had assumed would have been in my entire digestive system at that time of night. Well, morning, at that point. I went back to my peaceful bed, retching all the way, oh what fun it is to puke at night and then all day, hey! I spent the rest of the day retching violently and listening to everybody watching football. I was, unfortunately, unable to retrieve my newly-gotten iPod. I basically took trips between the bathroom, my mother’s bed, and a book on the Ford Mustang I’d gotten that day.

At the end of the day, I got out my new keyboard. But I digress, you see, because it is, like, Day 5 or 4 or 8 or something of Being Snowed In. A foot has fallen, perhaps more on the way, and I of course know not what to do. Being from New Mexico, I generally consider “a good snowfall” to be one inch, perhaps more in more polar climates like Alaska, so when a foot falls, well, everything shuts down. New Mexicans believe that if there is snow on the ground, everybody should stay indoors until at least May, and then only if it is sufficiently warm to set cows on fire.

They have shut down the schools, which is wise, in my opinion, considering the student drivers I encounter daily, who do not so much “drive” as “smash” through other cars, trucks, pedestrians, etc. With ice around, perhaps five students would arrive at school alive, perhaps with as many as three limbs intact. So I think it’s wise. I think.

Luigiville, on the other hand, is quite alive, in the sense that my little dead plastic people are standing on the streets, looking vigilant and happy. They would pop a cap in your ass if you looked at them funny, but they’d do it with a big happy smile on their face. I’m going to bring them to life as soon as I figure out how. Until then, they will continue standing around, bored, happy-looking, probably suffering from extreme leg cramping.

Until then…

Smashing through the snow
In a One Something Something
Going to the Loo
Puking All the Way