Sep 092011
Ichigo kurosaki

Bleach is a Japanese anime focused on the life of teenage Ichigo Kurosaki who discovers he has special powers and throughout the show sees those powers grow as he faces challenges and battles against powerful supernatural beings.

In the story, there are thirteen court guard squads, each with a captain and a lieutenant at the head. Ichigo fights against the same enemies as these squads, but sometimes comes into conflict with them and their leaders. Whenever a situation threatens someone’s life, or the very existence or the world as we know it, the Emperor who rules over the court guards rules in a way that seems to intentionally hamper the pursuit of right over wrong.

A typical conflict more or less follows this sequence…
– An innocent person is accused of doing something wrong and the laws are strictly applied, resulting in that person being hunted down and/or put into prison
– One of the subordinate leaders, or an “outsider” (e.g. Ichigo) acts despite their orders or rules, and initiates a rescue or other actions to clear the accused person’s name
– Some of the captains or other outsiders rally around the rebel and help in the cause, out of devotion to the accused individual or to save a world or dimension that is in peril
– Throughout this, the emperor continues to enforce the rules, refusing to intervene and even seems to impair those attempting to do the right thing
– Eventually, the rogue group succeeds

Given that the efforts inevitably lead to a successful outcome, we can draw two possible conclusions:
1. The leader is worthless
2. The leader is a genius at developing his captains

Have you ever been asked to do something, or inspired/provoked to go against the grain to prove your point about something to your boss? Maybe you were so determined that you worked extra hours to crunch the numbers, or came to work on Monday with a counter-proposal you worked on all weekend. When this happens do you feel grateful or frustrated? You should say “thank you” because you’ve just grew a little bit.

Perhaps the emperor’s approach is obvious to Japanese viewers, but to Western viewers, it must seem that the emperor should be replaced with someone who has a clue. I suspect he is creating the situations and watching to see who the real leaders are. Interestingly enough in the story, they tend to be the youngest ones.

Jul 032011

I sat quietly listening to one of my peers going into intimate details about his life. I sat and listened contemplating if sharing with a large group of people would actually help me. My ears perked up when the leader of the group asked for new comers to talk at the podium. I looked around and slowly raised my hand halfway up, with my head slightly bowed in shame. When he beckoned me up, my heart started to race, as I walked to the podium.

My name is Kevin and I am a MMO Gamer.
“Hi Kevin” the crowd murmured in mixed intrest.

I have been addicted to World of Warcraft for more then 6 years. I have been clean for 2 months now. I was so addicted that I still get e-mail and read forums about it out of habit. That is where I heard about a new patch. At that time all I heard in my head was, just check it out what can it hurt. Luckily I stopped myself, and instead I started to unsubscribe from everything that deals with WOW. They say, you only need to do something for 3 months or so before it becomes a habit. I ask you how do you stop something that you have been doing almost on a daily basis for 6 years. It’s not easy that’s how. I wanted to quit for almost 6 months. I cut the cord when I realized that I had played very few other games in six years. I had no skills to manage my time, so I missed out on a ton of other great games. So once I quit, I went out and looked for highly praised games I missed out on playing.  Fallout 3, Grand Theft Auto IV, Dragon Age and the Mass Effect Series to name a few.

It has been a hard road, I still think about playing WOW. It is a struggle that I hope to end up wining. My wife is happy that I don’t mindlessly run to my computer when it is raid time. I am happy that I don’t have to rush home to play only to find out that not enough players are on. I will keep you all updated of my successes and failures. I will certainly keep you guys up to date on the new games I am playing. I want to always have a sandbox game (Fallout 3), a platformer (Bayonetta), shooter (bullet Storm), and a fighting game (Mortal Kombat) always at my finger tips to keep me on the straight and narrow.

Well that is all I have to share for now, I did not look at all to my audience. I just quickly got to my seat and hoped for the best.