Simon FitzKit...In The Field!

One Vision: PlayStation Buttons

January 5, 2009
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While visiting family in Columbia, SC, I stumbled across an advertisement for an upcoming art exhibit called “Different Perspectives, One Vision.” The point seemed to be pairing senior citizens with college students and having them work together to create some kind of finished viewable photography piece (the exact nature of the work was unclear from the ad).

However, inspiration struck, and I’ve invited several people to join in posting our own (humbly, more creativity-stimulating) version of the exhibit: each week, we’ll have a challenge to take 4-8 pictures that depict the various parts of a pre-agreed set. One picture per piece, all pictures have to be have been personally taken by the submitter that week, and we’ll agree on a layout ahead of time so that we’ll have a generally easy time of matching each submitter’s depiction of each piece of the set.

Sounds more complicated than it is. Here’s this week’s One Vision:

WEEK 1: PlayStation Buttons.
The PlayStation controller has four specialized buttons:
* Triangle
* Square
* Circle
* X
Take a photograph that depicts each of these; the final layout is the same as their layout on the PlayStation controller.

——————–

And here’s my submission (click for full-size):

And other submissions:
T Hobgood (who’s obviously a better photographer than I): Gamer’s Got The Munchies

J Scronce’s:

More to come?


There’ll Be A Quiznos On This Later

April 28, 2008
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While at Firehouse Subs the other day, my friend Sketch pointed out that the sandwich I was ordering had an odd description: it came “Fully Involved.” According to the menu (their online version pictured below), Fully Involved means that it comes with all the normal toppings (lettuce, mayo, etc).

Now, I don’t like toppings on my subs; I’m a meat-and-cheese-only type of guy. But it seems wrong to just ask for the sandwich “plain” when they went to the trouble of coming up with such an interesting phrase to describe a sub being ‘with everything on it.’

Therefore, I now present a short glossary of terms for how to order your sandwiches at Firehouse Subs from here on out.

A Sandwich Fully Involved = Loaded. Complete with Mayo, Mustard, Lettuce, Tomato, Onion and a Dill Spear.

A Sandwich With Commitment Issues = Sandwich With No Toppings.

A Sandwich In Trial Separation = Toppings On The Side.

A Sandwich Just Going Through The Paces = Limp Piece Of Lettuce, One Slice Of Tomato, and Just A Daub Of Condiments.

A Sandwich Having An Affair = Fully Involved Toppings Between Meat And Top Bun; With Horseradish, Cole Slaw and Pickle Slices Between Meat And Bottom Bun.

A Sandwich Whose Marriage Is On The Rocks = Hot Sub…On Ice.

A Sandwich With A Restraining Order = The Sandwich Is For Here, The Toppings Are To Go.


There’ll Be A Quizno’s On This Later

April 28, 2008
1 Comment

While at Firehouse Subs the other day, my friend Sketch pointed out that the sandwich I was ordering had an odd description: it came “Fully Involved.” According to the menu (their online version pictured below), Fully Involved means that it comes with all the normal toppings (lettuce, mayo, etc).

Now, I don’t like toppings on my subs; I’m a meat-and-cheese-only type of guy. But it seems wrong to just ask for the sandwich “plain” when they went to the trouble of coming up with such an interesting phrase to describe a sub being ‘with everything on it.’

Therefore, I now present a short glossary of terms for how to order your sandwiches at Firehouse Subs from here on out.

A Sandwich Fully Involved =
Loaded. Complete with Mayo, Mustard, Lettuce, Tomato, Onion and a Dill Spear.

A Sandwich With Commitment Issues =
Sub With No Toppings.

A Sandwich In Trial Separation =
Toppings On The Side.

A Sandwich Just Going Through The Paces =
Limp Piece Of Lettuce, One Slice Of Tomato, and Just A Daub Of Condiments.

A Sandwich Having An Affair =
Fully Involved Toppings Between Meat And Top Bun; With Horseradish, Cole Slaw and Pickle Slices Between Meat And Bottom Bun.

A Sandwich Whose Marriage Is On The Rocks =
Hot Sub…On Ice.

A Sandwich With A Restraining Order =
The Sandwich Is For Here, The Toppings Are To Go.


Larry Curly and Mo-Cap

April 8, 2008
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Another Epic Games update:

More motion capture work means more excitement! We got on the evening news, we’re going to get to go to a motion-capture-team party at the sprawling estate house of one of our contacts at the company, and best of all, I have more NDA-sanitized pictures!

There I am in my mo-cap suit, ready to act like a tough guy wearing about twice my personal body-weight in armor.

Here’s a mysterious squiggle of masking tape on the ground of the mo-cap studio. What could it be? An alien chalk outline? The boundaries of an energy conduit we’re about to be sucked into? A Georgia O’Keeffe print?

And this is from down the hall in Epic Games’ in-house mini-gym (it’s how all those game developers stay so buff). You can set the Stair Machine to simulate the steps of famous landmarks. Not just the number, but also the angle of inclination. It’s a little crazy, but not as crazy as the options I’d have programmed in:


In-The-Field Manual 1: Emails

February 10, 2008
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And Now, a Simon FitzKit In-The-Field Manual…

E-Mail Addresses:
Several Varieties That Just Do NetWork For Me

In the olden days of radio, television and Commodore 64 computers, there were only two modes of personal communication: telephones and letters.

This is not to say that talking face to face, HAM operating, Morse code, smoke signals, flashlight-blinking, drawing The Dancing Men, using Navajos in wartime, and body language were not around, per se…it’s just that for purposes of simplicity, this reporter will not be counting them as ‘modes’ of communication, but rather as ‘medians’. A fine distinction that all lovers of mathematics are sure to appreciate. Tangent complete.

Both telephonics and epistulature allowed for decent-sized messages to be delivered from sender to recipient in a fairly timely manner, and this was due to one thing and one thing only:

STANDARDIZED CONTACT INFORMATION.

When you found yourself wanting to contact a business associate of personal acquaintance via telephone, you simply rotary-spun their seven uniquely-stringed digits and added three more if they lived in some distant mecca like Chatanooga or Newport News.

And when you put your feet up on the desk and dictated to Miss Maxwell a four-page editorial that the Post never printed –much to the paper and the general public’s loss– you made sure she typed out an envelope with FIRST LINE: Name, SECOND LINE: Street, and THIRD LINE: City, State and Zip Code…possibly adding a fourth line if the letter was to be Attention of a particular individual.

However, today, the youths use “E-Mail.”

Short for “Electronic Mailing System Using Computers Instead Of A Postal Service,” E-Mails were created to make communication speedier and more readily available for perusal. However, somewhere along the way, people… got Stupid.

Take a look at these examples:

unycornwomyn@hotmail.com

Obviously, ‘unicornwomyn’ and ‘unicornwomon’ had already been taken. And while it may be more genderally acceptable to spell ‘womyn’ with a ‘y’ instead of an ‘a’, there can be little argument that horses with a horn in their foreheads don’t normally try to buck patriarchal oppression. People aren’t going to easily understand your wacky alternative spelling any more than they do your wacky alternative lifestyle, so if your first choice was taken, change words, not letters.

shtkckr@netscape.com

Same thing to you, sir, with an added warning. Deleting letters is as confusing as changing them, and your choice of words makes contacting you that much more difficult. “Yes, please do E-Mail me, prospective employer. My E-Mail address is shit-kicker…only leave out all the vowels…at netscape dot com. What’s your E-Ma… oh I shouldn’t E-Mail you, you’ll E-Mail me? Oh. Oh, right then. Good afternoon.”

henryrichardforrest-marchester@gmail.com

Now, this young man went with the usually valid and admirable tack of making his E-Mail his name. However, he got a little carried away with himself… as it were. ‘henrymarchester’ would have been fine. So too would have been ‘henry.marchester’ or ‘henry_marchester’ or if that hyphenated last name is so important, go with just ‘forrest-marchester’…but the full-on johnjacobjingleheimerschmidt treatment is a trifle too much. Just think of the poor PTA member who compiles the school’s E-Mail list into a handy booklet. Think of how hard she has to work to format those columns to fit on one page-width. Think of how it takes more time to write your E-Mail than it takes most people to write the alphabet. Think on that, Henry Richard Forrest-Marchester…Think.

thetimehascomethewalrussaid@earthlink.net

Too long. No clever phrase is worth the annoyance of typing it out over and over every time you have other things to talk about. Save that kind of witty one-liner for use as the case-sensitive password to your first apartment’s Wi-Fi connection. Or, alternatively, learn embroidery and make yourself another be-sentenced pillow for your drawing room.

wierdyoghurt@excite.com

Hey! Brighteyes! Learn to spell. Meanwhile, your doppleganger over at ‘weirdyoghurt@excite.com’ has been spamfiltering all your party E-Vites…or has she been…accepting them? Om-in-ous-Chord!

bulbasaur494@comic.com

Trust me on this, it’s not worth it to only be the 494th person at comic.com to want to be contacted via ‘bulbasaur.’ Regardless of how kicking and radical his vine-whip attack may be, your friends aren’t going to remember what number ticket you pulled in the E-Mail queue. If you’ve got so little fear of public humiliation, why not ‘iambulbasaur’ or ‘hugabulbasaur’ or ‘bulbabulba’… or even ‘istillwatchpokemon’. All equally pathetic but infinitely easier to recall.

angelinajolie@aol.com

No. You’re not Angelina Jolie, and you’re not going to trick me again. NEXT.

ar653020@appstate.edu

Now, this wasn’t young AR’s fault. It’s the school’s idiocy. “Want to email your classmates? All you need to know are their first and last initials…and a random 6-digit sequence.” Plans are probably in the works to make these emails more readily available and more easily attributable to their owners, but that road, unfortunately, leads to bar-code tattoo parlors.

basgegcon@gmail.com

This reporter sees what you did there. “Scrambled ‘EGGS’ in ‘BACON'”…scrambled eggs and bacon. Very clever. It’s short, sweet, and at gmail.com. This reporter is all for it…except for the anagramming of EGGS into gobblety-gook. For you see, you can’t tell people what your E-Mail address is. “It’s scrambled EGGS ‘n BACON at gmail dot com”? No. That gives away your joke, and your doppleganger over at scrambledeggsandbacon@gmail.com will steal all your friends. “Anagram EGGS and put it inside BACON”? Too vague. “Anagram EGGS and put it after the ‘a’ in BACON”? We still don’t know what gibberish anagram of EGGS to use. “Bahs-gehg-cohn”? That’s the most promising route, but try saying it aloud and imagine having to transcribe it.

Oh, prattle. Now this reporter’s just needlessly nitpicking; basgegcon@gmail.com is possible the most bully E-Mail considered to date. Way to go, Basgegcon, you’ve won my admiration, and the official Simon FitzKit Piranha Trophy!

Until next time, this is Simon FitzKit…IN THE FIELD!


Mo Cap, Mo Problems

January 24, 2008
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The Shadow and I are working for Epic Games, doing Motion Capture for an as-of-yet unnameable project (i.e. The NDA I signed prevents me from saying what game we’re working on until they actually announce the title).

So I can’t tell you any specifics. However, I can go ahead and say: Mo Cap suits are hilarious, and I spent the entire day feeling like Jamie Madrox.

I get paid to do the most awesome things these days.


The Lights Are On, But Nobody’s Holmes

December 8, 2007
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I was at Borders earlier this evening trying to buy my father’s CMas gift (Shh. Spoiler Alert) when I ran across something he might like even more:


The Crimes of Dr. Watson: An Interactive Sherlock Holmes Mystery.

Book Description From amazon.com:
Quirk Books is excited to announce the discovery of a never-before-published adventure from the pen of Dr. John Watson, steadfast companion of the legendary detective Sherlock Holmes. As the tale opens, we discover that Holmes has vanished and Watson has been framed for a grisly murder! Writing from a damp cell in Coldbath Fields penitentiary, the falsely convicted prisoner recounts the events leading to his arrest …and provides twelve removable, facsimile clues that point to the true culprit. Among them are:

An article torn from a newspaper in California
A puzzling manuscript ripped into several pieces
A catalog of Victorian medicines and marital aids
Plus a telegram, an arrest report, an empty matchbook, a train schedule, and much more

It’s up to you to sift through the clues and solve the thrilling whodunit. When you think you’ve identified the culprit, slice open the final signature of the book (sealed at the printer) to read the remainder of the story. With beautiful Victorian-style illustrations and first-rate production values, The Crimes of Dr. Watson will appeal to mystery lovers of all ages.

Wow, I thought, it has the entire story “The Final Problem,” comes with envelopes of letters for clues, and a sealed Answers section at the back? Dad’ll love this!

So I flipped it open to the first envelope. It was empty.

Hmm, I thought, maybe this clue is just the envelope itself.

The next envelope was also empty. In fact, the sentence on the following page made it clear I was supposed to be holding a train ticket of some sort. I wasn’t, so I began to suspect shenanigans.

I flipped to the back cover, thinking that perhaps they’d been worried that the clues would fall out, so they’d decided to put all the enclosures in the back with the sealed Answers section.

The clues were, in fact, with the Answers, but unfortunately, the Answers weren’t with the book. There were overlapping flaps of cardstock inside the back cover, suggesting that Answers should have been contained within their protective embrace, but they were as empty as the rest of the book.

How odd, I thought. Someone’s flipped through this Display Copy and removed all the useful bits.

I grabbed the copy behind it on the shelf. It was empty.

Eight copies of the book –every copy in the store, as it turned out– were all empty. I took the entire collection to the Information Desk and informed them of the problem, then waited a good 5 minutes while they checked my story against the reality of the books.

So bizarre. Those clues were, according to the book’s own blurb, the only things that could free Dr. Watson. Who could have stolen them? The publisher? The manufacturer? Did the author have a change of heart after realizing some of the clues implicated him as one of Watson’s persecutors? Did someone murder everyone in the Korean mystery-envelope-stuffing sweatshop? Or was it a jealous wife? Or an adulterous doctor? No. It was her employer: Ms. Scarlet. …Um… Miss Study In Scarlet?

To make a long story short (Too late!), I bought the book I’d originally planned on buying. Sadly, Dad will have to wait for his Interactive Mystery. …UNLESS I KILL SOMEONE AND SEND HIM THE CLUES!!!

…enh. I’ll probably just buy it for him for Father’s Day.


We’re On In Five, Four, Three…

October 30, 2007
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Nobody should ever start a blog without writing a first-post journal. Usually, first-post posts are an explanation of why the blogger felt it necessary to start a journal (or, often, a new journal) and force their friends to (re)find and (re)link it. …Enh. Not interested.

ORIGIN TALES!

Title of Blog: In The Field With Simon FitzKit
(emphasis on the ‘fitz’ as if you’re SnoopDogg-izing the word ‘fidget’)
My friend Sketch and I came up with this character as a bit of green-screen brilliance.

The idea is that he talks like a vaudevillain reporter and presents ‘live’ segments from in front of the craziest green-screen movie clips we can find: zombie apocalypse, during Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall,’ interviewing DeNiro in ‘Taxi Driver’… you know, the standard stuff.

URL of Blog: folioninja.blogspot
“Folio Ninja” is my user ID on every video game I’ve played since March, 2006. It just sounded like it fit. Plus it seemed appropriate, considering how, at the time, I was rocking the senior year of an English major and taking the world’s greatest Shakespeare course. Enjoying that much of The Immortal Bard at one time makes a man do crazy things, like consider how much cooler ninja would be if they were also learned classic-lit scholars.

…Also, my friend Nate from Atlanta saw the phrase on my profile and decided to create the Polio Ninja, whose entire purpose is not to assassinate you quickly and quietly, but instead to give you polio.