I haven’t touched this blog in like a couple of months, and even before then it’s been a rare thing. Basically, NaNoWriMo, Christmas, college and the panic that comes with applying for university kept me busy, as well as a few other personal projects.

That and I feel like I’m all out of shit to say for a number of reasons. Largely because things have pissed me off more than cheered me up (and I really don’t want to fill this blog up with endless rants – dammin, Jim, I’m 28, not 82), and a lot of what I have had to say of late tends to fit “comfortably” within a couple of Tweets. Oh, yeah, and I’m currently under a feature block on Facebook right now, and I don’t know the full extent of that, but the extent of Facebook’s hypocrisy. See, as far as I can tell, the block may have been a result of a comment I left on a post made by Real Radio North East, in which they asked their listeners to write three words that summed up the prior 24 hours. My contribution was “Stupid mouse broke” because, well, my stupid mouse broke that day. Overpriced piece of crap that it was. That comment had since disappeared, and I also found that the station has also blocked me on Twitter.

It was either that or the station is taking it out on me because I called them out, when they tried to claim someone else’s image as their own by slapping their shitty logo over the original.

The original image is actually a user card from someecards.

The original image is actually a user card from someecards. And yes, I was understandably pissed that they pulled that shit. They quietly took the post down an hour or two later and then tried to pretend it never happened.

In any case, it’s looking to be the case that I’m going to be stuck in that feature block for a whole month, possibly more, and I don’t even know if this post will go through to my page, or if I am even able to comment on my own page (never really had that opportunity, to be quite honest). Either for doing the right thing or posting something that was about as offensive as breathing. Which might cause a few eye rolls, but let’s face it, if you’re offended by the act of calling an inanimate human interface device stupid, you might want give your life, and your priorities some long hard reconsideration.

And yet, while I am being penalised for the most moronic of possible reasons, others continue to get away with personally attacking someone and calling them the C-word for the “crime” of “failing” to post a link and spouting transphobic shit, to name but a few examples of the bullshit I’ve reported, only to be told that no action had been taken because none of them had been in violation of their community “standards”. Seriously, Facebook? Fucking hypocrites. I wouldn’t be surprised, at this point, if the site’s support “team” was nothing but an army of robotic bros, given this and their history of allowing pages promoting domestic abuse to go unpunished for months.

So, yeah, I went off on a rant. Again. On a lighter note, I’m going to try and give this blog a little more love. I have a few ideas which I might be posting over the next few weeks. So, erm, stay tuned?

Picdump: Hartlepool, December 6th 2013

A Christmas fair came to Church Square in Hartlepool this week:

Picdump: Hartlepool, September 14th 2013

It’s interesting, some of the things you catch when you’re not trying to be somewhere:

Why News?

Dear Sky News,

Why the fuck is the One Direction “movie” even news?

Why do you insist on reporting on this bullshit like it bears the same level of importance to Britain, if not greater, as something like the shit currently being hosed into the nearest fan in Egypt, the bullshit intimidation tactics our own government is employing in the wake of Edward fucking Snowden’s leaks, or the massive dump Russia is taking on its LGBT population?

Who, with even a hint of a sodding clue, gives a toss about this movie? It’s not even a proper movie, not even in the sense of feature-length documentaries like March of the Penguins. It’s a bunch of camcorder footage that might as well have been edited together by an unpaid intern, yet somehow, people are stupid enough to buy a full-price ticket for it. It has nothing on the likes of Spice World or S Club’s Seeing Double, which is saying something considering both movies are still considered crap. At least someone put some effort into writing them and directing them. At least those bands tried to act.

One Direction themselves are an insult to boy bands. Their “music” is monotonous, detrimental to logical thought, and has probably inflicted aneurysms upon a few people. Whenever I hear this shit on the radio, or have it inflicted upon me by way of a pre-video YouTube ad, I feel inclined to hunt down stuff by the likes of N*SYNC or Five just to flush that shit out. 1D’s music is not good music. If you can even call it music.

So kindly knock off with reporting on unimportant crap like this, especially after it damn near bordered on the level of idiocy that surrounded the Royal Baby yesterday. Focus on what really fucking matters right now.


Rant over.


I said in my last post that there were a few issues I wanted to address. This might drag on to a couple of more posts, but it’s better than a wall of incoherent text.

In that post, I mentioned how Anita Sarkeesian found herself on the receiving end of a lot of unjust dudeflak, after she criticised the Xbollox One E3 conference for showing off absolutely no games with a female protagonist. Most of theme were, at its most basic “Shut Up” retorts, if you can call them that, with a smattering of “Bitch,” “She-bigot” and the C-word. Generally, retorts I’d expect more from incompetently-raised, infant’s-school-age chav spawn, though that would be no less disgusting. Someone also reiterated the rape joke made at that conference. Again, disgraceful.

But then there’s the baffling logic. “Maybe if more women played video games.” Maybe if more women played video games what? Try finishing your sentence sometime, arsehats. Or better yet, stop pulling bullshit out of your arse. Women are not some dinky little unprofitable niche.

The gem of this faulty logic has to be the idea that today’s roster of male gaming heroes are somehow relatable. And there goes Chrome again, telling me that “relatable” is not a word. Shut up, Google, I am googling it. Gods…

  1. re·lat·a·ble

    1. Able to be related to something else.
    2. Enabling a person to feel that they can relate to someone or something: “Kate’s problems make her more relatable”.

That’s the definition Google gave me off the bat. If that’s not clear enough for you, TO THE WIKTIONARY-MOBILE!

Possible to relate; able to be related to.

Okay, a little more vauge, but let’s follow that link, shall we? Oh, hey. Definition 7 of “relate” right here:

(intransitive, with to) To identify with, understand.

So, all those dudebro protagonists, with their short shaven hair, their stubble, their ripped or otherwise superfit bodies, their deceased or missing lovers, children, siblings, friends, their miserable disposition, their broken trust, faith and/or manliness is… relatable? To everyone? To even the majority of gamers?

I just do not buy that. Nope. I just cannot relate to these characters. 99% of the time, I’m oblivious to them while I steamroll the enemy (or die trying) or softly-softly to my next quarry, if not wilfully ignorant. If there has been a character I could relate to, it would be my Saints Leader in The Third, she who gleefully trash a city for giggles, face adversity like it was a party, slam the faces of pedestrians for getting in her damn way before striking a pose with a stupid grin on her face. She would flip a table to get her people to pay attention, and it would work in her favour. I can relate more to that than “DUDEBRO CORPS STYLE, MUTHAFUCKA! NOW WHERE’S MY WIFE?”

Another dollop from the logic toilet: “Men are better at battle rolls. (sic)*” “Women aren’t as capable as men.”

Well, this Cracked article begs to differ. And this article from The Mary Sue, and perhaps many others you can find with a quick Google search. And claiming that women’s inability at anything has been proven doesn’t really prove… well, anything. Where is this proof you speak of? Oh, wait, is that the sound of its non-existence I’m hearing?

Fuck off, and take your falsehoods with you.

*Also, puke.

Fourteen Days of Shite

I’ve tried twice already to blog about some of the shit I’ve seen that’s gotten me down of late. Each time, I’ve run out of steam and into so many blocks that I abandoned them for a later date. Third time’s the charm, I guess. I’m going to try and keep things brief and to the point, and keep my stupid-shit opinion out of it as much as possible until I’m awake enough to actually process what the crap I witnessed over the past couple of weeks.

A week or two ago, Microsoft showed off their Xbox One, or – as I like to call it since I’m more than a little miffed about it – the Xbollox One. The games announced for the system disinterest me something awful and frankly confirm, for the most part, this Tweet I made just a few days prior:

Meanwhile, Feminist Frequency owner-host Anita Sarkeesian expressed her disappointment that none of the titles announce featured a female protagonist.

It’s a fair point, really. Look at any the shelves in your nearest game store. Count the boxes with moody stubbly blokes on the front. Now count the ones with female heroes on the box. The ratio’s a bit shit, to be frank about it. Unfortunately, quite a few men, understatement as it is, begged to differ. With venom and bizarre logic. I won’t go into detail as my thoughts on that logic here. Maybe a later post.

More recently, it had been discovered that some arsehole had set up a Kickstarter campaign to fund his book. You’re probably wondering why that might be a problem. Well, because it’s a guide to sexual assault, sugar-coated as “being awesome with women.”

More like being an arsehole with women. Kickstarter let it slip them by, despite the campaign being brought to their attention before the thing was funded. You read that right. It got funded. Several. Times. Over its goal. Kickstarter’s excuse: their policies dictated that they piss about over it for a couple of weeks. Um, sorry. but some things warrant throwing policy out of the window and getting that shit nerfed pronto. This campaign was one of them.

Those two incidents alone make me ashamed to be male right now.

Meanwhile, Penny Arcade’s Mike Krahulik, aka Gabe, managed to make a complete arse of himself on Twitter. In response to a Kotaku article a couple of weeks ago, whose author stated that “not all women have vaginas(NSFW, BTW) and later rather nicely rebutted someone who asked her what planet she was living on, Gabe spouted on Twitter that he believed men have penises and woman have vaginas.

I cannot say I am surprised that people called him out for that. What was surprising was that instead of getting a clue, and learning from his error, when the subject was brought up again a couple of days ago he reiterated those beliefs and then continued to get increasingly on the derpfensive, going on to announce that he would disregard anyone who used the term “cis” (it means non-trans), among other incredibly dumb announcements and retorts. I mean DUMB. To express the level of stupidity there would require me to actually put my SoundCloud account to use, but I don’t think anyone would appreciate me screaming “DUMB DUMB DUMB” down a mic for up to that site’s file length limit. Tangent. Anyway. Ugh. You’d think that someone in his position would have known better. You would think someone who is essentially a public figure would learn from his mistakes.

Last, but not least, there was the story of indie game developer Chloe Sagal and her series of unfortunate events. I’m not going to try and summarise it. I don’t think I can. I don’t think I can condense all those guts she spilled into the short sentences that will satisfy those who find it to be “TL;DR”. Instead I recommend you take a few minutes of your time to make the effort and read it properly (NOTE: It’s the orange link that reads “The Full Story”). Some advance warning, though: reading it made me feel ill. At the end of the day, she recognises she made a mistake, acknowledged it in that post, and voiced her reasons for doing so. If you ask me, a little forgiveness for something that seems to have been the product of multiple problems and issues that have compounded into a force that has, and likely still is, driving her to destruction, is not out of the order. It’s probably inadvisable to ask me about anything. I know less than Jon Snow about many things.

Still, what’s irritating is that there are a vocal few that beg to differ. In the opinion of these commenters, that post did not constitute a proper apology. Apparently, one of those is where you just admit you did wrong and you regret it and you’ll never do it again and let that be the end of it, no excuses. If I’m honest, what people think constitutes a “proper” apology can be a crock of shit sometimes, and risks masking legitimate issues that are better addressed, well, just left to boil over unnoticed until it’s too late.

In any case, she has a friend who’s trying to get her own surgery funded. She needs $13,000 but so far, she’s only managed $2,762 as I type this. If you’re feeling generous, there’s a jar you can drop a few notes in. It’s sad, really, the snail’s pace that meter’s creeping up. If 2,600 working individuals set aside $5 out of their weekly wages to fund stuff like this each week, the world might just be a more awesome happy place. Not to oversimplify things, of course, OR to sound like an Oxfam ad.

So, there you have it. The shit that’s left me disappointed and annoyed with humanity as a whole this past couple of weeks, condensed into just a smidgen over nine hundred words. I… am going to step away from the post editor for a bit and hope that I haven’t stepped on anyone’s toes as I was venting.

Knowing my luck, I have done so nearly a thousand times over.

You Think Your Labour’s Great?

It is an illusion.

And truth be told, I wish someone would remind whichever blind dipshit has been slapping these stickers about Hartlepool. And ESPECIALLY slap them about for trying to incite violence with some of the more inflammatory ones across the town, because as much as I’ve been conditioned to dislike the Conservatives, telling people to spill blood based purely on party affiliation, scratch that, telling people to spill blood FULL STOP is just not cool.

A sticker that reads: "The poor suffer. The bitch Queen gets £5 million... Tory c**ts...

Communication Fail

I think I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t seem to hold a decent conversation in the real world, or at least with or around family.

Today, I’d stumbled across some vids for the DC Comics fighting game Injustice: Gods Among Us, which basically takes DC’s heroes and villains and dumps them in a grimdark alternate universe where Superman lost his shit and took over the world. I really don’t like it. It’s grimdark, for a start, the characters move like rusty robots and Wonder Woman sounds like she’s getting turned on by taking Batarangs to the face being thrown down stairs and having statues dropped on her. Basically crap I wouldn’t put past the “minds” behind Mortal Kombat.

I voiced my criticisms to my brother a little later, for the sake of, you know, not being a completely asocial bastard around the house. Big mistake. As soon as I mentioned what I thought of NetherRealm‘s handling of Wonder Woman, the conversation went pretty downhill, starting from him joking about wanting to punch the superhero in the tits and ending in my dad blathering on about Xena, Warrior Princess, banging a centaur.

I don’t even want to begin to try and make the connection.

Regardless, that made me uncomfortable as flip.

I’m hardly a prude, of course. I’ll admit I’ve made plenty of rude, crude jokes in the past, some very recently, but sometimes both my brother and my dad can not only cross a line but gain as much ground between themselves and that line before the conversation turns to something else. Joking about beating the shit out of a woman’s breasts to hear her moan as much as possible felt like one of those crossings, and it’s not the first time either. The day Pope Francis I was finally plucked out of the hat, I popped downstairs to pass on the news, only to walk into my elder sibling barking “rape rape rape!” in jest at the dinner table. The temptation to sandwich his head in the clothes airer (repeatedly) reared its ugly head there. On the comments Bill Roache made on New Zealand TV, his response was that it was “just his belief.”

I could put down a novel’s worth of the stupid he comes out with if I could remember it all off the top of my head.

Meanwhile, my dad went off on a rant once at the mention of gay marriage, declaring that “gays shouldn’t be trying to change the church” or some bollocks. Wide of the mark, Dad, wide of the fricking mark. He’s also guilty of unapologetically spouting some racist crap and all.

Unfortunately, if I call either of them out on it, on every joke or stupid comment they make, be it about rape, LGBT issues or any other sensitive matter, I’m put on the spot and forced to justify my reaction, and more often than not, I find myself failing miserably at that, equal parts because my own reasons will fall on ignorant-fuck ears and because I am completely incapable of forming a coherent response fast enough. You try giving a well-informed verbal answer off the bat when you can’t even post an online comment without rewriting it fifty times. Not easy, is it? Now try doing it in the shoes of one of the slowest, dumbest fucks this side of the North Sea (me).

So, in the end, all I can do now is cringe when their mouths run as far away from their brains as they possibly can.

Cringe and walk away. And silently wish for an asteroid to strike the house.

I’ll Tumble For You

So, I have a Tumblr blog now, which is something I thought I’d never do. Sometimes I surprise myself. The World of Richie Stacker remains my main blog, but I’ll be using its Publicize feature to toss posts that way the same way I do Twitter (the point of Tumblr’s inclusion, I don’t fully understand yet), and reblog stuff here that tickles my fancy.

So it’s not completely redundant, I guess.

Slippery Soap

I don’t get soaps. I don’t understand their appeal. I mean, I’ve caught a few episodes of Emmerdale and Coronation Street in the past, usually when my mum is trying in vain to catch up (I think the former alone dominates the Sky+ box’s hard drive right now).

For the most part, all I’ve seen of either is endless plotting, scheming, family breakdowns,  mental breakdowns, outright verbal venom, fights in the middle of the street, other forms of suffering and the odd death. DEATH seems to be an major draw to these things, because it apparently warrants every TV and soap magazine in the bloody country going out of their way to spoil it, splashing mugshots of the likely victims on the cover and asking, in big, bold type: WHO WILL DIE?

(And the media likes to accuse video games of trying to turn us into mass murderers…)

YET! At the same time it’s practically been spoiled long BEFORE that with the announcement of actor leaving for whatever reason, and most of the time they put a character on a bus, it winds up crashing off-screen. I don’t get why people get so excited about something you know is going to happen anyway. In my opinion, good fiction slaps you with the unexpected, makes you scream “OH WHAT THE CRAP JUST HAPPENED?” at your TV screen when it happens, and a lot of the time, it is not always a train a dropping on a character’s head or something equally drastic. There’s no sense in making your big events as expected as you can.

And then there’s everything else. As much as my mum believes these soaps are a good depiction of current issues (she also blew her stack at an episode of Harry’s Law that wasn’t exactly close to her heart, so there’s an indication of her fiction judgement), I find it hard to believe that so much crap can befall one street or small village, even taking into account some of the crap that has occurred where I once lived and live now. It is a lot of crap that does befall a village the size of a small housing estate, after all.

A lot of that crap is often rehashed. How many times can Gail Platt* get herself in a relationship with the worst possible man ever? How many more affairs could possibly occur without it getting old hat? And why on earth does it have to be dragged on for longer than the average DragonBall Z arc?

I really do not get soaps at all.

* Actually, this may be true for a large portion of female characters in soaps. It seems to be always the same: she gets a guy, the guy turns out to be a scheming/abusive/murderous bastard and, because she’s blinded by love or some other lame excuse, it takes her half a year for her to learn the truth the hard way, at which point, her life is probably over or in immediate mortal danger. Denial of warnings from friends or family seems to also be a plug-in plot element for this crap. Outside of one recent story arc in Corrie, I don’t think I’ve really seen a reversal of roles.

Still, either way, it’s a shining example of lazy writing that it gets repeated so bloody often, and one that baffles me because viewers lap it up regardless.