Gabz/mL

a game I liked, Vol 3

Ys Origin on the Nintendo Switch

Enter the World of Ys and discover one of the greatest japanese A-RPG of all time.

If I got my facts correctly, this game had been around since 2006 when it originally released, or 2012 when it was initially localised.It is an action-RPG, think of games like Diablo and or Zelda.

I got this game back in October when released and it wasn’t until these past week when I finally got around it. Blame Ghost of Tsushima and Hades. I am somewhat familiar with the Y’s series of games. Possibly my first Y’s game experience was on the PlayStation 2, I think.

When this one was announced I was already sold. I am a sucker for retro style pixel art action-RPG’s and even more so for dungeon crawlers, which is the vibe this game gave me.

So far I got about 13 to 15 hours into this game and I am having a really good time. You start with two playable characters, each with unique skillsets and powers. Actually, there are three different characters but if I remember correctly you need to finish the game with the firs at two in order to unlock the third. The setting is simple, demons are attacking Y’s, there are these twin goddesses that protect Y’s and they have disappeared in this tower and it’s your mission to find them and rescue them.

And of course, there more to it. The entire game is you in this tower going up from floor to floor

The game is not too difficult, although, I am playing on the easiest setting. I am not for a challenge, I am for a good time and the story. Still the more you progress some enemies get a little challenging to beat. Boss fights are fun, they all have an exploit, it’s just a matter of finding it, and once you do, it’s... not quite a peace of cake but neither frustrating.

So far I am really invested in these characters and the story so far. Like in games like Diablo, there is some grinding, mostly in order to level-up and acquiring gems for upgrades but I think you can get by without too much grinding.

I love the pixel art and the music it’s amazing. I am definitely a fan of this game.

If you are into action-RPG’s, dungeon crawlers and pixels, I highly endorse this game 😎

🍺 Monster Cookie

11.5% ABV by Heretic Brewing Company Monster

Rating: B+

Notes: it is very sweet.

Monster Cookie is an 11.5% abv chocolate chip cookie Barleywine made with real chocolate chip cookies. This brew is a collab with True Symmetry Brewing. It has a strong, complex malt flavor beautifully balanced by the aromatic hops and with a mellow alcohol warming. The mouthfeel is luscious and the chocolate chip cookies play beautifully with the malt. It finishes dry and crisp without any cloyingly sweet aftertaste.

hey

There is this email app going around called Hey and apparently all the cool kids like it. I mean, when it was first revealed I liked what I saw too. What I saw. I signed up for the trial, a 14 day one and here’s what happened.

This is how I use email. I scroll, delete, delete, open, read then delete, close the app — done. I feel like I do email like it’s 1998. Unless I am job hunting, I could basically care less about my emails. I don’t use folders. I don’t have special rules. About 95% of my email is non-actionable. Privacy? Well, I had stopped using google for all my personal email. I have been relying on my iCloud email, my .me address and I think I trust Apple a but better too. Anyway, I pretty much don’t depend at all from my email. The only email inbox that really matters, is the one at work and I don’t handle work on my phone.

So why I am still wanting to use Hey. A domain, something like gabz@hey.como looks and sounds cool. I like the icon(s) and the interface. But the idea of buying and interface and icons for 99.00 USDs, again, based on what I saw and not from what I need it’s bonkers. I like shinny things and Hey, to me, it is my kind of shinny 😁

At the end, is probably FOMO. When I had the trial I probably opened the application once. Never got any emails to it. Maybe also something to do that those 14 days were pretty hectic and had no time to play with the app. Not the app’s fault I think. I am sure the people that pay for it and use it, they do find value in it. All that being said, I do wish they had a monthly subscription option, that way I could play with it more and who knows, maybe I’d like it so much and stick with it forever and ever.

micro.feelings - two years later

Micro.feelings

I am truly enjoying the Micro.blog experience, and the community. But I’m not going to lie, sometimes I find myself missing Wordpress for some reason. I’m thinking because I had this Ulysses/Wordpress blogging workflow. With Mb is a litttle bit different when it comes to me composing and posting. Is this a thing? Would I be able to overcome it and not look back to WP?

Well, it certainly didn't take me two years to realize this, perhaps a month or two after this post was posted. Yes, I was able, I have never looked back to WP ever since. I am happy with my current blogging platform. As far as my posting workflow. iA Writer got their game together, Drafts has always been a good option as well. I would love to get back with Ulysses full-force but not until they get their shit together and give me the ability to post to Micro.blog 😤

I went walking

Today I went for a walk, just like friend of the blog Maique 😄. Except that for me wasn’t on the street but rather more “outdoorsy” — more wilderness.

I went to the foothills, something I have been craving on doing for quite sometime. I would dare to say it has been over a year since I last hiked the foothills. I really needed it, my mind and soul needed it. Went to my favorite spot, Military Reserve, is the ones I am most familiar with and know pretty well. Even then, at one point I double-guessed myself to whether I was lost or not, but I wasn’t. I still knew my way around.

I was having fun, like I’ve said, it had been a while and I was happy to be back on the foothills, until. Besides me, there are a few folks on mountain bikes. I think I encountered a total of six bikers. The rule around here is that they make space for me not me for them, but still, I always walk on the side of the trail and if I see someone coming towards me, I step outside of the trail to let them pass. And they are always very nice about it, say good-morning and thank you. It is sometimes hard to see when they are coming behind me though, I do try to stay alert the best I can in case i need to steep out of the trail.

One lady comes from behind, I noticed her when she was very close, but I still had enough time to notice and step away from the trail, and she yells Thank you. A few minutes later, another lady on a bike, I noticed her and stepped away from the trail, but she was still coming too fast. She realized that and she stills try to move to the oposite side of the trail from where I was. Unfortunately she lost control of the bike a little bit and she fell from the bike. I felt so bad, so so bad. I asked her if she was okay, she seemed to have hit hard the ground with her knee. I stayed right with her, she asks for my hand and helped her to get on her feet. She walked, trying to shake it off, holding my hand, obviously in pain. She walks, stands up for a bit, turns out the forms lady that passed me by a few minutes earlier was her daughter but at this point she was far away. She asures me that she’ll be fine and decides to get on her bike and kept riding way. I never saw either of them through the reminder of my hike.

By then I had about a mile or so left, that last mile was not as fun. All I could think of was the lady that fell from her bike. Questioning myself if that could have gone differently. What’s it my fault? What if I was further away from the trail? Was she’s going to be okay? Also kept looking behind me more often than looking forward.

I do hope she’s okay.

Besides that incident, it was fun. I think.

infinite music

There is one iOS 14 feature that I have been enjoying quite a lot lately and that is the infinite mode in Apple Music, or the music player rather. I like how I’d be listening to an album or maybe just a single and the same type of music keeps playing after the fact. Instead of me remembering to either have another album or song on the queue or even create a station, it does it for me.

Today I am on a 90’s R&B vibe! 😎

we dislike it

Over the weekend my lady and I were having a small talk about the current status of our devices. We both have the iPhone 11, and we have both come to the conclusion, that we have grown to dislike the size of it. Well, she always disliked the latest sizes, ever since the iPhone 6. I was pretty content or got used to the size of the iPhone X. When I ordered the 11, I had totally either dismissed or forgot about the — slightly— bigger size of the 11 compared to the X. Yes, it probably makes reading and typing much better but, well we hate the size. It is hard to use one-handed and we are always afraid of dropping it.

This is why the moment we get a chance, we will be upgrading to the iPhone 12 mini (or the iPhone adorable as I call it). We are currently under Verizon’s upgrade program, which means we have had to have paid 50% of our current device before we are allowed to upgrade, which would be in March 2021. We could upgrade earlier, just need to pay enough to make it 50%, which it’s actually not that much, so we might not wait until then.

i still prefer my camera

It is obvious that cameras have gotten better an better over the years on the iPhone and other mobile devices. Cameras are getting amazing, wide angle and telephoto lenses, system-wise processing, all the goods. I see pictures other people post around and they are outstanding and what’s even more Crazy-Town Banana-Pants, there have been taken with iPhones. I myself have experienced this, with my iPhone 11, some of the pictures I take with it, the quality of them are as good and sometimes even better than what I get with my Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III.

Still, I prefer my Oly for my most of my photography. There’s something about holding a camera in my hand that can’t compare with just holding your iPhone to take a picture. Think about how much of our writing and texting is done on computers, our phones, tablets, etc. But there is also something about getting a fancy pen and write fancy words on a fancy notebook or piece of paper. I guess something similar goes with using an actual camera to take a picture instead of your mobile device.

Speaking of fancy, I am looking to upgrade my camera gear. Most likely it’ll be a Fuji. I would also like a Leica but they are pretty damn expensive.

a few seconds of panic

During yesterday’s visit to Luna’s pediatrician, I had a few seconds of panic. As we were walking into the hospital, at the main entrance, there is a “screening” point. They’s ask all the usual. Are you feeling sick today? Are you showing symptoms? Who is the patient? Do you know where you’re heading? All the questions. Besides that, one thing they require is to replace my mask with theirs, as per the hospital’s policy. I have Luna in my arms, and I put her down, right in front of me. While I was putting on the mask and adjusting she walks behind me, as she usually does when she’s shy, I did notice this. Furthermore, with the mask on, I can’t look down just by lowering my sight. I feel like Michale Keaton’s Batman moving my entire upper torso to look around. In my mind, Luna was still in front of me and I did not see her when I looked down. That’s when I started to panic a bit, I looked to my left, then my right and did not see her. It wasn’t until the lady said “Go with daddy” that then I realized she was right by my right leg.

Sidenote: I almost corrected the lady, “it is papa, not daddy

Why not daddy? Well, that’s a post for another day.

2-year check-in

Today was Luna’s two-year’s check-in with the pediatrician. And of course, as it always goes every time she’s getting a shot or two, I’m the one assigned with the task.

Luna is not a fan of doctor’s visits. The moment we walk into the office she gets nervous and edgy. I guess that’s expected, Marley was the same. However, every once in a while we need to see the doctor on-call when the primary isn’t available and, at least Marley, is pretty chill with the other doctor more so than with her primary. But that’s a whole another blog-post.

Luna’s check-up went as expected, she wasn’t happy, in order to get her weigh, I had to get weighed with her [Luna] and then again by myself. The things I do for my child, weigh myself on front of another lady that is not my wife 😅

The worse part was obviously the shots. She did not like that at all. Two seconds later she’s fine though, as if nothing happened.

Even mad and in tears, she politely said goodbye to the staff.

and I’m back

When Reeder 5 came out, along with iCloud syncing for feeds, I had decided at the time to “cut” the middle man and canceled my Feedbin subscription. It all went well until I noticed my unread items were way out of control. I do some reading on my iPhone and very little on my iPad (weird ha!). A lot of my reading happens on my computer, well, my work computer. When I am in front of my two bigbutt monitors. And if you have used Feedbin as a service before, you’d know how nice their web interface is — love it!

Today I re-subscribed to Feedbin, this time I did not import any of my RSS subscriptions. It is kind of nice to start from scratch. Also, I am doing a little bit of an experiment.

I am trying to degooglefy, trying to use fewer google services or not at all. The only Google service I can still see myself using is YouTube. However, I am not logged in with my Gmail account when I watch a video. This also means I won’t necessarily know when one of my “favorite” YouTuber(s) will upload a video. What I am doing instead is subscribing to their feed via Feedbin. We will see how that works. Another thing I want to do is get my newsletters on Feedbin instead of my email. I mean, if I am going to pay for this service, might as well take advantage of all its features.

no sleep

I always dislike when I have the chance of a good night sleep but my mind goes on and on about all sorts of things. Like tonight, I know I am tired, so I had decided to go to bed early and get some needed rest. But then, all these thoughts and feelings come out and they want to talk!

I hear voices in my head...

Voices in my head

Anything from personal frustrations, to work frustrations, finances and so on. Things I need to do, things I should do, goals, etc. How the world it's a clusterfuck, the pandemic, social issues and politics!

One thing that is having me restless more than anything tonight is work. I love my job, I am proud of working for the company that I am part of, proud of my team and what we do, and what I bring to it. But I still feel some disconnection in a way. When i started this job, I believe it was mid August of 2019 if I recall correctly. Like in any new job, for me at least, the first 6 months or so is all about learning the ropes and prove yourself worthy whilst still trying to buildup connections. Proving myself it's a big deal and I depend on relationships. That is my type of personality, I like to make fiends and have good people around me. Under normal circumstances, it is easy for me to build relationships and get along with people. This is how I have always been, I can talk to anyone and everyone, make jokes, have good conversations — I socialize.

Six to seven months into my new job the pandemic hits and we all get sent to work from home. Up to this point my "closest" relationships had been with my immediate team members or as I call them, the trailer dwellers. Maybe one or two activities in which I got to interact with other teams but nothing too significant.

Needles to say the pandemic made this worst. Then it was me, my computer, Skype for business and Zoom. And always with the same people. I get back to the office in august, close to my one year anniversary with the team. Still, it is not the same. Due to obvious reasons the company wants to keep minimum interactions between members of staff so, we have two shifts. I'm in the morning shift, from 5am to 12:15pm. In the trailer, instead of the entire team, it's just me and one other. At this point this is probably the closest relationship I have.

So I feel a huge disconnection from my other coworkers and the rest of the other teams. Still to this day, whenever we are having our zoom calls, they talk about people from the building that I have no friking idea who they are and it's weird to me.

It feels very different and foreign. In previous jobs there was always this dynamic in between teams and even when we didn't necessarily work directly with each other, there was always this sense of team and we were all teammates. There was good communication, for the most part, and everything flowed swimmingly. Also the fact that we had "team-building" activities helped with creating this relationships. And I am sure this dynamic exists and everyone else feels a part of a whole, it’s just that I feel like I never got the chance to be a part of it. I never had the chance to build those relationships, to build those bridges. And with social distancing and all that, it's making that even harder for me. This is adding to my ongoing stress and frustration. I feel very disconnected and not so much of a teammate. I feel like I've also become more socially awkward. It is, again, a very strange feeling.

All that being said, my team, is awesome. If I need help I can reach out and they'll help me out in any way they can.

As long as there's internet. 🙃

diablo

Today, thanks to the magic of “on this day” I was reminded of my “fitness” progress at the time. It made me sad in some way, since I haven’t been active as I was back then, at all. I have been trying. I do good for a day or two and then I’m back and being lazy.

Today, in the back of my head, I knew I wanted to start again — try this thing again. Also in the back my head, was the devil, as we say back home, el Diablo es puerco (the devil is a pig). I really didn’t want to do anything, that little devil was telling me to take a nap, play video games maybe. Still I dragged myself outside and went for a two mile run followed by a few assisted pull-ups (gotta build strength back up).

It felt good, as it always does, it’s just a matter of keeping at it. Ignore el Diablo 😈.

Diablo, que tú no puedes conmigo

El Diablo by Ray Barreto

🍺 Narwhal Imperial Stout (2020)

Narwhal Imperial Stout By Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Narwhal Imperial Stout is inspired by the mysterious creature that thrives in the deepest fathoms of the frigid Arctic Ocean. Rich with notes of espresso, baker’s cocoa, roasted grain and a light hint of smoke, Narwhal brims with malt complexity. Aggressive but refined with a velvety smooth body and decadent finish, Narwhal will age in the bottle for years to come.

I wait all year for these to be available, and when it does, my heart swells 🥰❤️

rss bankruptcy

I have been having a hard time keeping up with my RSS feed lately. In fact, since the release of Reeder 5. With this release came iCloud syncing for all the feeds, which I was very happy about it, cut the middle man! I cancel my Feedbin subscription and have been using iCloud for all my feeds. Well, here is the thing, I do most of my reading at work. It is hard to find time to catch up with my feed. Unfortunately, Reeder does not have a Windows app, which is what made Feedbin so great because I could open the website and read. And by the way, Feedbin’s website is a delight to use, I had tried using some other’s and their website usually sucks 🤫.

Right now I’ve got six hundred and fifty-two unread items... 😩

🥷🏼 💨

if you fucking like something

Omar on the Micro.blogs posted ‘no more guilty pleasures’.

Sharing a post by Austin Kleon.

What I loved the most about Kleon's post was this quote.

I don’t believe in guilty pleasures. If you fucking like something, like it. That’s what’s wrong with our generation: that residual punk rock guilt, like, “You’re not supposed to like that. That’s not fucking cool.” Don’t fucking think it’s not cool to like Britney Spears’ “Toxic.” It is cool to like Britney Spears’ “Toxic”! Why the fuck not? Fuck you! That’s who I am, goddamn it! That whole guilty pleasure thing is full of fucking shit.

Dave Grohl

I have no idea who Dave Grohl is, I should probably check his podcast or whatever is that he does. Either way, I totally agree with him.

Update: Of course I know who he is, it took me 10 mins and a reply from my friend Andrew Canion to realize it! 😅

If you fucking like something, like it.

And for the record, I do fucking love Toxic by Britney Spears

😉 ❤️ 💨

trying to squeeze joy

So I’m trying to squeeze joy out of these historic events that have happened, but it is just very daunting for me to walk around and realize that the majority of white people here in the United States despise me because of the color of my skin

I don’t think I have the right words to describe what I felt when I listened to this. Sadness? Anger? Fear? All of the above?

And just like the lady in this call, I am trying to squeeze joy out of these events. I am hopeful that things might turn around in this country. However…

📺 jujutsu kaisen

JUJUTSU KAISEN on Crunchyroll

Itadori Yuuji is a boy with tremendous physical strength, though he lives a completely ordinary high school life. One day, to save a classmate who has been attacked by curses, he eats the finger of Ryomen Sukuna, taking the curse into his own soul. From then on, he shares one body with Ryomen Sukuna. Guided by the most powerful of sorcerers, Gojou Satoru, Itadori is admitted to Tokyo Metropolitan Jujutsu Technical High School, an organization that fights the curses… and thus begins the heroic tale of a boy who became a curse to exorcise a curse, a life from which he could never turn back.

Only one episode in and I am hooked.

Things i liked this week

Vernal - EP by Oscar Welsh

Blush by Maya Hawke

The Nintendo Shack

Questlove Supreme: Lin-Manuel Miranda

tech

Yesterday I was on the phone with Apple Support. Even though I had performed factory resets to the Macbook Pro before, recently, I have had bad luck and screwing things up. This time around, I had decided to call Apple and get some professional help. If you are familiar with this process, you know that there is some downtime while waiting for things to happen, where the representative and I had some time to chat a bit. We were talking about the early days of the internet and how slow everything was, AOL, and all that fun stuff.

That conversation got me thinking about the differences in technology from when I grew up vs my girls’ time growing up. I grew up having to get up from the couch to change channels. Having to deal with antennas on the roof. I remember when we first got cable, and it was the most fantastic thing ever. When we first got internet service in our house, dial-up internet, and coming back from school and logging into ICQ and or Messenger was the thing. Later it was getting DSL and that was the greatest thing ever! And so on and so forth, until today.

My girls will know nothing of that. All they know is that there is a magical box connected to the telly that shows cartoons, The Frozens, The Trolls, and The Spidermans. They don’t understand the concept of losing all that if the internet goes down. I remember one time Marley watching cartoons on the iPad, wifi only, we get in the car, we drive away from the house and the movie stops playing. She didn’t understand the reason or why her movie stopped playing. Now she knows. Luna, she’ll be two-years-old in a few days. She grabs the Apple TV’s remote and talks to it, she still doesn’t get that she needs to press the Siri button but she has the basic concept. They both talk to try to talk to both Siri in the HomePod and/or Alexa. With Marley having better luck with that, of course, and for now. Luna, at almost 2yo, she understands and can “drive” and iPhone or iPad as if was part of her everyday thing.

I am not sure how bad if at all, this can be. Maybe is just a byproduct of the times and it is what it is. Also, I am curious to see where things will be going moving forward. New technologies will arise and how kids– my kids – will interact and grow with them.

Curiouser and curiouser.

apple one and news

We signed up for Apple One this week. It made sense for us, in between Apple Music, Apple Arcade, and iCloud Storage, we were already paying about 30.00 USD. The good thing is that we pay the same amount but we get billed once, rather than 10 USD now, 5 later and 15 thereafter. On top of that, we get the extra services. Now that I have Apple News +, I am making an effort to use it more. I have moved the app to my main screen and try to create a habit of using it. The problem I have is, I don’t trust the news, I am very skeptical. The headlines, seem sensationalist and very deceiving. I can’t stop but wonder, whether what I am about to read it’s true or not.

neon abyss

A long while ago, I wrote about a game I liked, Neon Abyss which I couldn’t have enough of that game. I played this game for months until I kind of got frustrated with it. I could not progress anymore in the game. I pretty much got stuck in a loop. Long-story-short, I needed to acquire a specific randomly-generated token from one of the dungeons to get to the current target, Ares. If you didn’t get the token, you would fight the 3 bosses previously beaten (Argus, Hal, and Zeus), and that was it, you’d have to start over. Other times I would access the token, only to die in one of the bosses fights.

Today, I decided to play the game for a bit, kind of like having a craving for a donut. I just wanted to play for a bit, whether I could progress in the game or not. Well, it turns out, I had the best run I could have had. I got the token early on in the game, managed to survive all three bosses, and beat Ares. Now I am to the next “manager”. That would be Athena.

state of the backpack November 3, 2020

It has been a hot minute since the last time I posted about the contents of my backpack. So I thought I would write about it, today of all days.

I am still rocking the Everyday Backpack by Peak Design. It has been over a year now since I got it and I am still very happy with it. It feels good to finally get to use it again now that I am back in the office. Its configuration has changed a bit since last I had posted.

The default is basically three inside compartments, I only have two setup now. The bottom compartment holds my Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III and the Olympus M.zuiko 45mm f 1.8 premium lens — always.

The top compartment holds, well, a bunch of stuff. Although I am yet to write much on it or at all, I carry a notebook with me at all times. Also in this compartment, you’ll find My Nintendo Switch and the Pro Controller, my work phone an iPhone 8, the iPad Pro 11” one or two spare face masks, an MK Scorpion Funko Pop figure, a pair of regular headphones for the Nintendo Switch, a pair of EarPods and my Powerbeats Pro. In addition to that, you might find some type of Tupperware constraining my breakfast for the day, usually oatmeal with peanut butter and a bit of brown sugar and a spoon.

On the top pocket, also located in the first-main compartment, I carry usually a small folding knife and my wallet.

On the sides of the backpack, in the inside pockets there are spaces for a lot of things but I usually just have pens, regular pens, and the Apple Pencil. Sometimes I may throw random things but I dot use these pockets as much. On the outside pockets of the backpack’s side, I usually stuck my coffee much in there as well as my key. On the other pocket, there’s usually a beanie hanging from it these days.

like a hurricane

A day like today reminds me of those hurricane days back in Puerto Rico. Most of my experiences with hurricanes were an overnight thing, that’s when usually hurricanes would pass by our location. You would go to bed, hoping for the best, praying, and find whatever surprise in the morning. Maybe nothing major happened, or perhaps total destruction happened, it was very uncertain. Today, feels like that, hoping for the best but suspecting the worse, and hopefully, the worse will never come to happen – at all.

one more thing - new rollerblades?

A casual conversation on a nerdy iMessage chat.

Me: New rollerblades (•.•)/

Mr. Donny:

“The custom anodized aluminum process, really makes them glisten in the sun as you stream down the road. We’ve worked tirelessly to develop a custom shock absorbing technology that makes it feel like you’re skating on air. In fact we are so courageous that we’ve completely removed the wheels. The new blades will start at $700 and you can purchase wheels for $300 each, if you still want them.”

*streak not stream

Me: 💀 😂

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