Well, I didn’t think Lord of the Rings would be the thing to put Viagra out of business, but here we are. For those who don’t know, E3, the annual video game expo, is going on as we speak. I’ll have a full roundup later, but this was too important not to address. I’m a huge Lord of the Rings guy. YYYUUUUUUUUUGGGGEEE. Aragorn is the greatest fictional king ever, IMO. So, needless to say, I’ve been looking forward to this game for a while. Shadow of Mordor was the first game I ever got for PS4, and it’s still easily one of the best I’ve played for the system. Shadow of War could be a GOAT game. This looks awwweeeeeessssssoooooomeeee. The Nazgul are in it? *swoon* You come face to face with Sauron? *faint* There’s an armored Balrog? Someone get me some tissues. I’m so ready for this. I need to get a time machine ASAP and go to October 10th.
It’s been a little while, but we’re back with some more Burning Questions, straight from the People. The Burning Questions Mailbag was starting to get some serious buildup, so I had to give it some release. Plus, what better way to celebrate Memorial Day than answering other people’s important quandaries? Considering how heavily these Questions have been weighing on my readers’ minds, solving their problems kind of puts me in the same class of hero as the brave men and women we’re remembering today, right? I’ll keep telling myself that, at least. As with last time, we have to start with a question from the most important member of the #BurningQuestions community, myself.
Brian asks: Why do some people put toothpaste on their toothbrush before running it under water?
There are of a lot of great mysteries out there. Who was Jack the Ripper? What is the Meaning of Life? What happened to Jimmy Hoffa? What’s up with the Bermuda Triangle? Even the Mysteries of the Rosary. But for my money, absolutely nothing beats this. Why the hell do people put toothpaste on first? The order is wet toothbrush, put on toothpaste, brush teeth, wash toothbrush. It’s not exactly rocket surgery. There’s four steps and people somehow still mess it up. You don’t put milk in the bowl before the cereal, you don’t put socks on before underwear, and you don’t put toothpaste on before running it under water. Not to take a shot at the fine parents across this great nation, but if you allow your kids to do this, you’ve failed to produce a contributing member of society.
pestooneverything asks: Does Sean Paul make songs better or worse?
I don’t know, you tell me:
Infinitely better. Next.
xboxguy asks: As the streaming industry takes off (this year there will be more time spent watching games than playing them) and services like Mixer offer a more interactive viewing experience (crowd can vote on key decisions and impact the gameplay), will we see a shift in the way games are designed?
Well, I didn’t really expect to get into a discussion about the fate of the video game industry, but here we are. This may get a little nerdy, so bare with me. As far as Mixer is concerned, while it is assuredly the most advanced and efficient version of this type of populist streaming, it’s not the first time we’ve seen it. Consider the tale of Lord Helix, the central deity from Twitch Plays Pokemon, a bizarre experiment that asked the question “what if every decision in a Pokemon game, down to the direction the main character walked, was made by an internet comment section in real time?” Needless to say, they made a complete mockery of the game. But, by introducing complete chaos into the relatively straightforward story, an entirely unique experience was created. It was so popular, they did it more than 10 more times. Now, Pokemon games are handheld games with simple mechanics and rudimentary decision-making. It’s relatively easy to subjugate them to the whims of the masses. If things like Mixer can effectively bring a similar experience to current-gen console games, then it’s almost guaranteed to change the way games are developed. Considering the popularity of streaming (I’m not really a streaming guy, but, for some games, I understand the benefits of watching someone else play. Now, if you’re going to sit there and watch someone else play, and then make all the key decisions and impact the gameplay? Just play the game yourself), games who focus on streaming will undoubtedly add features to encourage audience participation. I suspect, soon enough, almost every game will introduce some kind of peanut-gallery-friendly mechanics. The gaming industry has never been one to stand in the way of progress, and I fully expect this to be a massive hit.
BlacktopLebron asks: Couple NBA questions- is the lottery rigged, and who are your top ten NBA players right now, based purely on talent (not age, contract, success, etc.)
Rigged? The NBA Draft Lottery? It can’t be. Not the same lottery the Celtics just won by pure chance and of their own merits? Never! (But, in all seriousness, yes, of course it’s rigged. You think the Lakers kept their top-3 protected pick by chance? You think the still-NBA-owned New Orleans Hornets won the lottery because of luck? Or that the Cavs won a million straight lotteries despite having astronomical odds after LeBron left town? Or the Bulls somehow winning the Derrick Rose lottery? Please. Russian elections think the NBA Draft Lottery has a dubious history)
As for my top ten, it looks something like this:
- LeBron James
- Kevin Durant
- Kawhi Leonard
- Russell Westbrook
- Anthony Davis
- Steph Curry
- James Harden
- Giannis Antetokounmpo
- John Wall
- Karl-Anthony Towns
JoeyGSp0t asks: What’s the most degrading thing you’d do for money? Would you ever do porn?
Well, I’m flattered that you would consider asking if I’d ever do porn. Truth be told, though, I’d do pretty much anything for money. Now, if I did ever delve into the adult entertainment world, I’d probably have to create an entirely new life for myself, because you can’t be a part of the regular world and the porn world at the same time. I’d need new friends, new family, most likely a new identity (besides my stage name Rodrigo Waters, obviously). I might even need to fake my own death. That’s a lot of work. Too much work, you might say. So, I probably won’t do porn, mostly because of the inconvenience it would cause me. Not the shame. I abandoned all shame long ago.
WhiteKong asks: What’s the best specialty sandwich?
Excellent question as always, WhiteKong. Not many things in this world better than a good sandwich. I’m assuming by specialty sandwich, you mean anything more complex than a basic deli meat sandwich. Don’t get me wrong, good deli meat is excellent. But sometimes, your body needs a something more than just turkey and condiments. Now, to avoid the more annoying, trapped-in-2015 sections of the internet mob, I’m drawing some guidelines here: this only counts regular sandwiches. Meat between two or more separate pieces of bread. Anything served in a hot dog bun doesn’t count. Also, no specific fast food items, either. Only things you can either make at home or get at any good sandwich place, not one specific restaurant.
Top Five Sandwiches
- PB & J
- Bacon (or sausage), egg, and cheese
- French Dip
XtothaG asks: Will Andre 3000 ever come out with a solo album?
If I knew the answer to that, I’d be doing something better with my life than writing this blog.
dpower asks: What’s the best pickup line on Tinder?
Easy. “Hey, do you read briansden69.com? Wow, me too.” Hope you’re ready for what comes your way.
KingRichard1911 asks: What would be the best period of history to live in?
I assume you mean besides “right now.” Quality of life in anything before 1950 is going to be pretty lousy, so I’ve got to pick a time where my modern-day knowledge would make me a king, but where it’s not so much greater than what the people have that I’m considered a witch. And, in the likely event that I’m killed, I’d prefer it to be something quick like a gun, not a dull bone knife. That’s a pretty small window. I’m thinking anywhere from the late 1600s through the 1700s or so would be good for me. If I went back there with a set of modern maps, I could easily become the greatest pirate ever. All I’d have to do is not get caught. Avoiding the law in any time before the Civil Rights Movement should have been the easiest thing ever, so I’m good there. Or, since I’d be the biggest, strongest, and smartest person there, maybe I could lead the Continental Army against the British. I’d be the first president, not George Washington. And, since I lack his honor and foresight, I’d just stay president until I die, creating the exact same system of government that I just spent many years fighting to avoid. Or I could just be a taller, smarter Napoleon who doesn’t do stupid shit like invade Russia or get into pointless wars with Spain. Really, the possibilities are endless for anyone who just isn’t an idiot. That’s the only pre-requisite for world domination.
WhiteKong also asks: What’s the most overrated food?
Last time I discovered that cantaloupe was the most underrated fruit, so I guess it’ll now become tradition to debate which foods are properly rated. Not that I’m complaining, or anything. My food takes are rock solid, so it’s an honor that many people come to me looking for guidance. Now, there are tons of overrated foods. Off the top of my head there’s things like Taylor Ham, Sriracha, quinoa, kale, wasabi, the list goes on. But, I keep coming back to avocado, but I actually don’t think it’s the true answer. Let’s get it out of the way, though: avocados suck. I know I have to renounce my status as a millennial for saying it, but someone has to. I’m sick of being held hostage by this stupid fruit. Avocados don’t taste good. They don’t even really have a taste. They’re just mush. Hey, Chipotle, I’ll keep my $20 for a small cup of guacamole, thank you, because guacamole stinks. But, as I said, avocados aren’t the most overrated food. You know what is? The term superfood. It’s the entire reason avocados became popular in the first place. They’re the original superfood. People are completely obsessed with the concept of superfood. What, do you think an avocado is going to do your taxes or something? Rescue your cat from a tree? What happened to something just being healthy? Now it’s got to be a superfood. And they’re all so in-your-face, too. People trying to get my to eat açai berries or something. Please. And everything’s a superfood, now, too. “Blueberries found to be newest superfood.” Just because it tastes good and is healthy doesn’t mean it has to be called a superfood. Pretty much everything outside Chili Cheese Fritos is a superfood these days. Literally every fruit. Pretty much every nut. Most fish. People saying wine is a superfood. If everything is a superfood, how can anything be a superfood? It’s so stupid. Avocados are healthy. That’s good to know. Calling it a superfood doesn’t make me want to eat it. It doesn’t make me want avocado-flavored stuff. It doesn’t make me want avocado-themed clothing. It doesn’t make me want to name my first ten children Avocado. It’s like the insufferable bacon craze that finally died down. There’s always the It food that everyone thinks everyone else loves and wants to jam it down the public’s throat 24/7. And right now, it’s Superfood.
DeerHit45 asks: As medical sciences continue to push towards reversing the effects of aging, humans are quickly becoming immortal. Will this make life lose all meaning?
Had to end with a feel-good question. I mean, yeah, if everyone was immortal I don’t think everyone would care about anything anymore. What would be the point? The skydiving industry would love it. Casinos would be thrilled. Amusement parks would be on the rise. People would just spend their infinite lives searching for thrills, for anything that made them feel alive. Or feel anything at all. There wouldn’t be some great progress or new utopian society. That’s just not how humans are wired. If our lives had no end, all meaning would be sapped from it. Why should I ever go to work? Why should I leave the house? Whatever it is I was going to do, I can do it tomorrow. After all, I have all the tomorrows in the world. If you think humans are lazy now, just wait until we’re immortal.
One day I’ll understand why every Japanese game/show about high school life starts out with the main character’s first day as a transfer student.
I’m back with the second edition of random thoughts. If you’ve forgotten how this works, I’d like to congratulate you on your NFL career. Not everyone gets to the mountaintop. Anything I want to talk about but isn’t enough for a full post gets dumped here. Let’s jump right in.
They Still Make Rock Band?
I saw recently that they’re coming out with some DLC for Rock Band 4. Huh? Who still plays Rock Band? That era was before I was in high school, and they’re still coming out with new stuff? That’s some truly startling news. I never got the whole fad, anyway. Guitar Hero sucked. Rock Band was only fun because you could play it as a group. I was pretty bad at the game, but hand me the mic and I’ll burn the place to the ground. Not even Through the Fire and Flames could stop me. I was the George Michael of Rock Band. But to play it in 2017? No thanks.
#Nomorenoonmeals has Changed My Life for the Better
Even since I gave my two cents about lunch and introduced the world to the #nomorenoonmeals movement, I’ve found myself subconsciously eating lunch later and later. It’s been one of the best things that’s ever happened to me. I eat when I want to. I eat when I’m hungry. I’m happier when I eat, which makes me happier for the rest of the day. It deepened my resolve that society’s rules on eating are antiquated, counterproductive, and, overall, completely pointless.
NFL Denies Josh Gordon Reinstatement
Seriously? Listen, I’m not a weed guy. I’m not a “pothead” as the kids say. But this is going on like three years now. It’s the easy comparison to make, but Ray Rice was originally suspended two (2) games for beating the shit out of his wife. Terrell Suggs poured bleach all over his kid, beat up his wife at least twice, and was caught having a minor armory’s worth of guns in his house and didn’t get suspended once. Michael Floyd had a DUI and was back on the field the next week. But Josh Gordon gets three years because he can’t stop smoking weed? Makes sense.
Why do You Have to Buy So Much Celery?
I really should save this for the next installment of Burning Questions (coming soon-ish), but it’s too fresh in my mind right now. How come every time I need to get celery I need to buy about a metric ton of it? Why can’t I get like two or three stalks? If there’s a celery shortage in the world, I’m probably responsible, since I throw away 90% of the celery I buy. I need it about once every two months, and I need to buy farmer Brown’s entire harvest every time. I’m not about to start eating the extra celery or anything, either. Seriously, have you seen the bags of celery grocery stores sell? It’s absurd. Just let me get what I need.
For Real This Time, Get This Bum-Ass Wizards Team Out of My Face
I’m going to be seriously upset if they have to play a game 7. If the Celtics played my old high school team they wouldn’t have beaten them down as badly as what happened last night. You might be able to consider that kind of massacre a hate crime. Wizards are, and have always been bad. Please just end it Saturday night.
Apparently, Floral Prints are IN this Spring and Summer
Well, would you look at that? Looks like I’ve been fashion forward my whole life without realizing. As a proud Flower Guy and a definite Hawaiian Shirt Guy, I wear floral prints year round. Pretty much since I’ve been old enough to actually afford my own clothes floral has dominated my closet. Like most trendsetters, though, my impact is never felt in the moment. It takes years for a movement like this to take place, and I’m glad I could be at the front.
Funny. I thought the oldest known baleen-whale relative was your mom.
Speaking of Your Mom, Don’t Forget to get her something for Mother’s Day
Despite the fact that I’ve spent the majority of my life disappointing my parents, I’ve never forgotten Mother’s Day (I think). So make sure you do something for your Mom this Sunday, whether it be getting her flowers, taking her to dinner, forgetting to call until 9 p.m., sending a card in the mail first thing Monday morning, or going another year without giving her any grandchildren. Now, I don’t have a podcast (yet), so I don’t have any promo codes to get you a special offer from 1800flowers.com, but that doesn’t get you off the hook. Don’t be the guy that forgets about Mother’s Day.