Thursday, October 21, 2021

Video Game Comes to Life

Back in the early 1990s, I played one of the first (if not the first) games in the Need for Speed franchise on my 286 PC. By today's standards, it was... awful. But, hey, it's what we had.

There were three things from that game I wished were in real life: no consequence speeding tickets and crashes, and the game had a map that showed you were police were. If you didn't slow down in time, you could still get a ticket.

Well, I realized recently, one of those things has come to real life. Google maps will display on your route where people have reported police on the road. It works fairly well. On a recent trip to Spokane (where people were passing me constantly as I went 5 mph over the speed limit), no cops were reported and I didn't see any. On a trip to Seattle, Interstate 90 was like an autobahn.

Now, I don't trust this map well enough to speed as brazenly as some others do. Just my luck, I'd be dong 80 mph and a cop would show up that isn't on the map. And I'd get a ticket. And, unlike the game, those have consequences. And in Washington State, speeding tickets are expensive.

Do you use Google Maps to find police? Has it worked for you? Let me know in the comments below.

Thursday, October 14, 2021

COVID Booster Shot

A week ago Wednesday, I had my third COVID shot, the so-called "booster." That was just over six months since I had my second COVID shot. I had the Pfizer shots.

I discussed with my doctor if I should have this booster shot. I'm not over 65 but I do have health issues that qualify me for the third shot. He said I should have it.

I made an appointment through my county health district website to have the shot at a Walgreens. When I got there, I discovered having an appointment meant nothing. When I told them I had an appointment at 10am, they said, "Get in the line." There were five people ahead of me who apparently didn't have appointments.  I finally got my shot about 10:30 and then had to wait 15 minutes (I waited about 13 minutes). I got in before some of the people in line in front of me because I had my paperwork all finished and ready to go. I expected to have my shot shortly after 10 and be out of there by around 10:15. I was there for 45 minutes. Thank God they had a public bathroom. 

I felt fine except for soreness at the injection site which is common with any inoculation. But almost exactly 24 hours after getting the shot, I felt nauseated and had a mild headache. I was still able to eat and never vomited. Those were the only side effects I had.

I'm just hoping in six months I don't need another "booster." Or is COVID going to be like the flu and you need an annual shot for it.

How do you feel about the booster shot? Did you or would you get one if you're eligible? Let me know in the comments below.

Thursday, October 7, 2021

What Could Have Been

I was channel surfing a while back when I came across the beginning of Guardians of the Galaxy. I watched it until the first commercial break. But, because I have Disney+, I decided a few days later to watch it in 4K UHD with Dolby Atmos sound and no commercials.. So I did and thoroughly enjoyed it. Because it was the second time I watched it, I understood it better. There's a lot going on in these movies and a second viewing helps.

And then I watched Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. II a few days later, again on Disney+.  And I enjoyed it more than the first movie. I'm thinking of watching End Game and Infinity Wars next (in the right order, I don't remember right now which came first).

And I thought, "This goes to show how good the Star Wars sequels could have been." That is if they'd been in the hands of someone such as James Gunn instead of J.J. Abrams. (I guess Gunn has been fired for "offensive" tweets. Let's hope GotG III is still just as good.) 

The GotG movies are visually intense: there's a lot going on the screen. But they are still fun and well made and just overall enjoyable. Yes, Star Wars is a different type of movie. But the sequels could have been so much better. 

It sort of breaks my heart. I hated hating the sequels.

Maybe Disney should turn the Star Wars movies over to Marvel Studios.

How do you feel about Guardians of the Galaxy? How do you feel about the Star Wars sequels. Let me know in the comments below.

The above photo is being used under Section 107 of the Copyright Act: fair usage.

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Huskies are 2-3

For as long as I can remember (or paid attention) the Oregon State University Beavers have been the doormat of the Pac-12 conference. They were a team you played and beat before going on to the tough teams in the conference. So when I heard that last week, OSU beat USC (one of the tough teams) in Los Angeles by a score of 45-27, I started to worry about beating the Beavers this week. 

And I was right to worry. The Beavers came into the game with the top offense is the Pac-12. 

Then the game started. The University of Washington Huskies got the ball first, and marched down the field to make a touchdown. Apparently, OSU's defense wasn't as good as its offense.

But then the game got down to a grind. The Husky defense was able to hold the Beavers to only 27 points. But the Beavers held the Huskies to 24 points. And the Huskies lost to the Beavers for the first time in eight years. 

At least it wasn't a blow out and it was a tight, exciting game that was often tied. OSU ran the ball a lot and Washington had trouble stopping their running game. The game ended on a tie-breaking field goal by the Beavers. 

And what is surprising and a bit ironic is that the former doormat of the conference is now in sole possession of the number one spot on the Pac-12 North as the only team unbeaten in conference. That's because Oregon was taken down in an upset by Stanford in overtime.

Next week the Dawgs have a bye, giving them two weeks to prepare to face UCLA. The time and channel are to be announced.

UPDATE: The UCLA game is at 6:30PM on October 16th. It'll be shown on Fox broadcast channels.