On Gaming and Re-embracing an Identity

I knew I was going to buy Anthem when I saw the preview last year. It wasn’t the premise that sold me, despite the high-concept sci-fi allure a la Mass Effect, nor was it the fact that you get to fly around like a knockoff Iron Man— which looked freakin’ breathtaking.

The heroes you play are called freelancers.

I fell in love.

As a freelance writer, my days aren’t nearly as action-packed, but I gotta say, sometimes it really does feel like you’re fighting enemies (an insanely competitive job market), giant bugs (sending and resending invoices), and massive titans (clients who aren’t specific, or keep changing the terms). Anthem, too, sports some double entendres that I feel deep down in my core. At one point a nemesis says, “you’re useless, freelancer.” It’s like, I know. Sheeesh.

I haven’t been this ecstatic about a video game in 4 years. Because 4 years ago, I thought I was done with gaming. Continue reading

Best Films of 2018

Movies made 2018 somewhat tolerable for me. Judging by 2018’s record box office receipts, it seems like films made the year tolerable for the lot of you.

Here comes the hard part: choosing 10 of my favorite films of the year and ranking them by way of preference. This is my sixth time composing this year-end list and it doesn’t get any easier when the slate is this good.

I will fight anyone who says 2018 was a lame year for movies. From small and independent fare that wended their way into the mainstream conscience (A Quiet Place, Hereditary), to big budget extravaganzas that delivered the hype and obliterated expectations (Black Panther, M:I – Fallout), to Oscar dramas that wound up becoming event films in and of themselves (A Star Is Born, Roma). The past year in movies may be set and done but it nonetheless sets the bar astronomically high for 2019. These were the best movies of 2018 IMO:  Continue reading

1st (and Last Ever) Miscellaneous Film Awards

The last and first few months of the year tend to get mad pretentious with all this awards talk. If you suddenly find yourself insanely posh and judgmental, you know why. Everyone, it seems, is touting a frontrunner for every major film category out there. But what about the ones that reaaaaallly matter? If you wondered to yourself what was the Most 2018-Sounding Profession, or Longest Movie Title, you’ve come to the right place. Continue reading

All the Conversations I’m Dreading This Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving (or Dreads-giving, as I like to call) is a time for families to gorge on the hum-drum details of one another. If your family is anything like mine, they’ll pop out of every nook and cranny in the house subjecting you to an endless interrogation: “Who are you?” “What are you hiding?” “Where were you on the night of _______?” Ah yes, the annual probing marked by passive-aggressive, or aggressive-aggressive jabs. Eating is one of two of my coping mechanisms, even more so on Turkey Day. As I fill up the flask and study the floor plan of my auntie’s house, here are all the nagging, drama-seeking questions and Hallmark card-advice I’m likely to get this Dreads-giving. (Based on previous Thanksgivings over the years 😃) Continue reading