Nuggets of Wisdom

Friday, June 26, 2015

Fan Art Friday, Vol. 6

The Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide today. To celebrate this historical milestone, this week's Fan Art Friday will highlight some of my favorite yuri (female) pairings, both canon or otherwise. (Yes, yes, I am using this as an excuse to post fan art of LESBYHANS! What's your point?)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

And Now The Good News #03

Pixar has been experiencing a bit of a creative slump since Toy Story 3. Most of its films since then have either been lackluster sequels to otherwise good movies (Monsters University and Cars 2) or lackluster movies of otherwise good concepts (Brave). The next few years don't see anything changing with many more proposed sequels on the horizon (Finding Dory and Incredibles 2). However, the company may have managed to rise above its creative malaise with its most recent film--and the box office numbers confirm this!

Pixar's newest movie, Inside Out, made its box office premiere with a bang with a $91 million gross, which, according to Slate, is "enough to eclipse Avatar’s $77 million debut and claim the largest-ever opening for an original property." In a summer otherwise plagued with sequels and remakes, this movie proves that original ideas are not only possible, but extremely profitable. Hopefully, this box-office success with encourage Pixar and other movie companies to start creating films that isn't more of the same.

But this is but the cherry on-top of this week's good news, which includes a good guy with a gun stopping a bad guy with a gun, a plane traveling around the world without a single drop of fuel, and scientists curing cancer with bubbles--f***ing bubbles! Read the rest of the good news below:

John Oliver Misses Mark On Online Harassment

Having run my blog for more than five years, I’ve gained my fair share of both lovers and haters. As you can tell from the “colorful” comments I posted above, some of my haters have been particularly creative in expressing their disdain towards me. Especially in my earlier years, I’ve been engaged in endless flame and block wars with trolls and haters, some of whom even drew comics about me killing myself (sorry, I don’t have that example to share). My experience on Tumblr, dealing with the feminist hate mob, was especially worse, to the point where I inevitably had to take off and leave that Celestia-forsaken site.

So yes, boys and girls, contrary to what internet trolls will tell you, the internet IS serious business. This is not about free speech. Death and rape threats are not free speech. Doxxing someone’s personal information and leaking it is not free speech. Posting naked photos of your girlfriend because she dumped your sorry ass is not free speech. Sending a SWAT team to someone’s house because they pwned you in an online game is not free speech. Online harassment is not free speech. It is serious f***ing business, and John Oliver was correct to highlight this very real and very serious problem.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Pony Recap: Slice Of Life

100 episodes. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that a little girl’s show can not only last for more than 100 episodes, but also garner the praise and admiration from fans outside of its targeted demographic. And yet here we are, 100 episodes later, and the creators more than went all the way out to express their gratitude towards their loving fans.

Ever since the show first started, fans have been enamored with the side and background characters, to the point where they developed their own personalities and backgrounds for them. For the most part, these characters have kept to the background, with the occasional spotlight or shout-out now and then; but now, these characters, for whom the fan base have obsessed over, managed to get their chance to shine in an episode all of their own.

And yes, despite the majority of fans loving this episode, there have been a few whom have voiced a fair level of criticism. Yes, you can question how Time Turner had his name changed to Doctor Whooves with a new quirky personality and British accent. You can question how Cranky Doodle happened to know Steven Magnet. You can question how absurd it is for Bon Bon to be a monster-fighting secret agent. You can even question why the Mane 6 were shoved to the background.

But in the end, most of these nitpicks are just that—nitpicks. Everything else about this episode is so insanely awesome that those nitpicks can be easily overlooked. For once, these characters, whom the fan base have become enamored with over the years, finally had an episode all to themselves, a chance for them to take center stage when they otherwise took the back, and if this episode proved anything, it’s that the show’s creators are more than capable of taking characters who otherwise play supporting roles and giving them starring roles, and boy, do they shine bright!

I will be honest, if this were the last episode of the series, I would be okay with it. No, really! (Well, okay, if this truly were the last episode, I would be disappointed because I want to see the rest of Season 5!) This episode truly went all the way over the top—to the point where they literally jumped the shark—and as such, it’s hard to think of any episode after this that can top it. With all of the effort, all of the love, that was put into this episode, it very well could have been the most fitting way for the creators to lovingly end it. We can only wait and see how the rest of the series manages to play out, whether for the worst or for the better.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Nintendo E3: At Least The Puppets Were Entertaining

I was going to write a point-by-point analysis of this year’s Nintendo E3 event (as I did with last year’s), but I’ve decided not to do that for two reasons: 1) time restraints, and 2) it was simply boring.

And Now The Good News #02

The little girl above choosing to play with power tools rather than Barbie dolls is 9-year-old Hailey Ford. When she learned of the many homeless people living within her town of Bremerton, Washington, she wanted to do something about it. In her own words, "everyone should have a place to live."

Rather than wait for someone else to do something about the homeless problem, Ford picked up a hammer and drill and began building small homes for the city's permanent tent city. With funding from Together Rising, and help from her parents and grandparents, she is building eleven 8x4 wooden structures which are expected to be completed later this year. Previously, she had started her own garden, from which she has grown and donated "128 pounds of produce in 2014" and hopes to grow 250 pounds later this year.

Ford's story is one of many stories of good people doing good things. The following are some other "good news" stories about small steps towards a freer society, advances in science and technology, and otherwise “feel good” stories of Good Samaritans:

Monday, June 15, 2015

John Oliver On Why Torture Doesn't Work

John Oliver once again pulls off a comedic yet insightful expose, this time on the un-American practice of torture—er, I mean “enhanced interrogation techniques”! Hopefully, if you don’t already know what ever non-sociopath knows that hurting people is bad, especially for the excuse of extrapolating information, this segment will make you think differently. (Or at least it will make you think differently about Peter Rabbit!):

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Shameless Plug Saturday: WatcherOfThe2000s

Most 90s kids will argue that our decade was the best in animation, with the decade that immediately followed it being the worst. As Mr. Enter recently showed, that decade was a virtual animated wasteland. Johnny Test. Squirrel Boy. Cramp Twins. Nothing but bad cartoons for as far as they eyes could see, with this current decade being the life-saving oasis on the horizon.

However, as bad as that decade may have been for animation, it did have a few rare gems, and WatcherOfThe2000s is the reviewer who has dedicated himself to uncovering and sharing those rare gems.

Just Finished Watching MLP’s 100th Episode

Best. Episode. Of The Season. By Far.

I’ll have a pony recap eventually (which, judging by my previous rate, will be three weeks!), but otherwise, the episode was simply amazing. The best, by far. What more can I can other than, if you haven’t already watched it, than do so? It’s that good!

Daily Stevie: Connie And Steven In The Rain


Here’s a sweet, innocent comic about Steven and Connie in the rain. Steven wants to protect Connie from the rain with his shield, but it’s not big enough for both of them. He finally manages to have it expand with a little help from Connie. (Now that I read this description, the comic doesn’t sound all that sweet and innocent—but it is, I swear!)

Friday, June 12, 2015

Fan Art Friday, Vol. 5

Welcome to yet another Fan Art Friday. No theme this time around. Just another random mashup of fan art that tickles my fancy.

I would have loved to see a picture of Daenerys Targaryen riding Toothless, but I guess I’ll have to settle with this cute pic of the Mother of Dragons stroking the pussycat of a dragon. Either way, it’s adorable!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Throwback Thursday: What Is Funny?

An old, obscure Nickelodeon short pondering the question "What Is Funny?"

That very question is one that I'm pondering myself.

Open Thread Thursday: What Makes You Laugh?

Recently, Jerry Seinfeld mentioned how he rarely performs at colleges because of how sensitive and “politically-correct” college students tend to be nowadays, and he’s not the only comedian to have expressed this sentiment. (Ironically enough, he’s since been lambasted over that sentiment by said college students, complaining about how they’re offended that he said they’re easily offended.)

This got me to thinking about what constitutes comedy, both for me and my fellow millennials. Lately, I’ve been feeling that much of what passes as “comedy” today, especially that aimed at millennials such as myself, just isn’t funny.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

SPOILERS: MLP 100 Makes IT Canon

Hasbro leaked a sneak peak of MLP’s 100th episode. At first, I wasn’t going to watch it, but curiosity got the best of me. I thought the teaser was going to spoil the episode for me, but if anything, it has made me more hyped for it. If you want to watch it, click here. (SPOILERS: Let’s just say that the newest episode will make canon one friendship—a certain musical friendship! :D)

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

And Now The Good News #01

Tired of hearing about how badly the world sucks? Need some good news to cheer you up? Well, we have your good news right here:

Pony Recap: Lost Treasure Of Griffonstone

94 episodes. It has been 94 episodes since we last saw Gilda the Griffin, and both the reunion and ulitmate resolution was more than worth the wait.

Not only did this episode further expand the world of Equestria (the griffins and their kingdom) by also expanded on the overall story arc.

Yes, it seems most of us were correct in assuming this season was going to be a magical maguffin quest--though interestingly enough, the maguffin in this episode didn't really play that big of a part.

That did make for a change of pace, as it taught that not all problems can be instantly resolved, especially with a magical maguffin, and sometimes, the only thing that one needs to bring about change is yourself.

Also, fledgling Gilda was super cute! I still hate her for treating Fluttershy like Squee!

Anyway, my further thoughts are below:

John Oliver Explains How Bail Is Fail

A few weeks ago, John Oliver explained how municipal violations can place Americans (mostly poor and minorities) into the f*** barrel. Recently, he shed some light on another aspect of our broken justice system that can also throw innocent Americans into the barrel: bail!

VGM Monday: Jungle Japes & DK Island Swing

Normally for this weekly feature, I share actual music from video games. This time around, I’ve decided to share a hip remix of a video game classic made with real instruments—all by one guy! Now that’s talent! (Click here to see more of his amazing talent in action!)

Monday, June 8, 2015

Texas Cop Story Worse Than You Thought

I had a chance to watch Tomorrowland yesterday. The movie had a very positive message about maintaining optimism over pessimism and how the future is determined by your own outlook on it. It even expressed a cute metaphor about how the two outlooks are akin to two wolves, and how the one that you feed is the one that wins in a battle over the other.

Admittedly, the story may not have been the best, as most reviews have already elucidated, but the message was a breath of fresh air from the apocalyptic doom-and-gloom typical of most futuristic movies. It really touched me and inspired me to become a bit more optimistic myself. As such, I really wanted to step away from my blog's usual cynical tone and focus on a more positive one. I really, really wanted to start expressing hope for humanity.

And yet the universe decided to throw a monkey wrench into my plans with current events, as usual.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Shameless Plug Saturday: Stupid Bad Memes

Most of us have had this unfortunate experience: you’re scrolling through your Facebook or Twitter feed when you come across a meme—a stupid meme, a stupid bad meme!

Maybe it’s a display of uber-patriotism demanding that you sport a big boner for ‘murica or GTFO. Perhaps it’s a conspiracy theory about how 9/11 was an “inside job” by the “Illuminati” in order to establish the “NWO.” Or maybe it’s simply an insipid meme claiming that peppers have gender. (Yes, there are people stupid enough to believe that!)

Regardless, it’s a groan-worthy meme that makes you either want to facepalm at best, or ragequit and punch a hole through your computer screen at worst. At the very least, it makes you seriously consider “unfriending” that old high-school classmate whom you reluctantly accepted a “friend request” from.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to rebut the meme in question in a calm, rational manner without having to resort to telling the person who shared it to go play with themselves with a sharp knife? Fortunately, if the meme exists, then chances are it’s been rebutted by Supid Bad Memes.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Fan Art Friday, Vol. 4

After seeing this sweet pic on the DA front page, I’ve decided to, once again, focus this week’s Fan Art Friday around a single theme—and once again, that theme is Pokémon. Redundant? I know. But it was either this or skip this week’s Fan Art Friday, and considering I’ve been developing a bad habit of skipping my weekly features, I wouldn’t allow this one to fly. So, anyway, onto the Pokémon fan art:

Daily Pony: Kitchen Nightmare

Yes, yes, before you ask, I am getting to the Pony Recap on the "Lost Treasure of Griffonstone." I'm only fortunate that the new episodes have been airing with minor hiatuses between them, otherwise, I would have been really far behind with them.

But speaking of that episode, Gilda was only fortunate to have her scones (or what seemed to pass as scones) critiqued by Pinkie Pie and not Chef Ramsey here. I know Gilda is used to being surrounded by jerks, but Ramsey would have taken the jerk level to maximum levels even too much for her to handle. (Though, personally, it would have served her right for screaming at poor little Fluttershy during her first appearance!)

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Throwback Thursday: Coco The Monkey

Like most other children growing up, sugary cereal was always a major part of a complete breakfast—and by “major part”, I meant the only part. You might as well rename the meal “cereal” because that’s what most children ate in the morning.

Eating breakfast cereal is essentially the childhood equivalent of having only a cup of coffee for breakfast: it’s worse for your health than not eating breakfast at all, but the buzz that we get from consuming it, either with the sugar in the cereal or the caffeine in the coffee, pretty much keeps up awake and going until lunch.

But I digress.

As a child growing up in the 90s, what cereal I ate was dictated by what cereal mascot was able to convince me with their commercials into bugging my parents to buy their product. I was told by Toucan Sam to follow my nose to Fruit Loops, encouraged to hear Rice Krisipies "Snap, Crackle, and Pop" by the eponymous elves, and was made to chase after the Lucky Charms of Lucky the Leprechaun.

However, there was one cereal mascot whose cereal I never ate, but whose jingle managed to ingrain itself into my brain to this day: Coco the Monkey.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Why Is Switzerland The Happiest Country?

Originally, I was going to make a parody of this insipid meme and spoof how Denmark claims to be "the happiest country in the world" while paradoxically having so many unhappy traits (high alcoholism, high anti-depressant use, high cancer rates, high suicide rates, high divorce rates), but after hearing about how Switzerland has displaced it as the new happiest country, I’ve decided to instead create this meme highlighting the Swiss and their successful “libertarian” policies. No big surprise that the new happiest country on earth has the freest people, both socially and economically.

Here are "9 Reasons Libertarians Should Love Switzerland" according to Corey Iacono from the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE):
1. Switzerland has the fourth-freest economy in the entire world and is only surpassed by Hong Kong, Singapore, and New Zealand.

2. Considering that Switzerland has one of the most free-market economies on the planet, it’s no wonder the country has the ninth-highest per capita income in the world. Indeed, research suggests that the freer a market economy is, the faster it grows.

3. The Swiss have the third-highest median household income in the world, which means the median Swiss household is slightly richer than the median American household.

4. Switzerland has the fourth-lowest level of government spending as a share of the economy among the 34 OECD countries. (OECD refers to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, a group of developed countries.)

5. The Swiss have genuine federalism and decentralized government. Their central government is responsible for around 15 percent of total government spending, which is lower than that of any other OECD country.

6. The Swiss have a long history of armed neutrality and haven’t been involved in war since 1815. Switzerland is like a porcupine: it won’t bother you, but it would be a huge mistake to mess with it.

7. Switzerland has the fourth-highest gun ownership rate in the world. It also has the 11th-lowest homicide rate in the world (out of 195 countries).

8. Marijuana is decriminalized.

9. Switzerland is the third-happiest country in the world.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Daily Stevie: Favorite Playing

By making Steven's day, Pearl allowed him to make her day, or week, or month, or however long she is going to gloat about it to Amethyst. Click the panel above to view the rest of the comic.