Categories
Music Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #18

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #18, in appreciation for artwork.

Music:

Visual:

Dragon Valley by somatonic

Book:

Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman

“It is a small world. You do not have to live in it particularly long to learn that for yourself. There is a theory that, in the whole world, there are only five hundred real people (the cast, as it were; all the rest of the people in the world, the theory suggests, are extras) and what is more, they all know each other. And it’s true, or true as far as it goes. In reality the world is made of thousands upon thousands of groups of about five hundred people, all of whom will spend their lives bumping into each other, trying to avoid each other, and discovering each other in the same unlikely teashop in Vancouver. There is an unavoidability to this process. It’s not even coincidence. It’s just the way the world works, with no regard for individuals or for propriety.”

― Neil Gaiman, Anansi Boys

[ Quote Source: goodreads.com ]

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #17

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #17, in appreciation for artwork.

Visual:

THE STREETS – Chapter 4 – THE GIGGLERS by  DanLuVisiArt

Book:

Sojourn by R.A. Salvatore – this is the first book I ever read on my own free will.

“There is a wide world out there, full of pain, but filled with joy as well. The former keeps you on the path of growth and the latter makes the journey tolerable.”

― R.A. Salvatore, Sojourn

[ Quote Source: goodreads.com ]

Music:

Bedlamite by Puscifer – lyrics @ Genius.com

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #16

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #16, in appreciation for artwork.

Music:

Tennis Court by Lorde, remixed by Flume – lyrics @ Genius.com

Visual:

house m.d. by mart-art

Book:

Prey by Michael Crichton

“They didn’t understand what they were doing.

I’m afraid that will be on the tombstone of the human race.”

― Michael Crichton, Prey

[ Quote Source: goodreads.com ]

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #15 – Shadow Edition w/ Book Haul

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #15, in appreciation for artwork.

It’s Friday again. How am I doing? Today, I feel great. I went through my hospital stent and it ended up being a sort of vacation as well, just to get away from everything for a little while, which was a silver linings of sorts. I am looking forward to getting back into the web serial soon. So I need some good vibes / prayers to write something you and others can get something out of while also enjoying what you are looking at.

What does your shadow mean to you?

From one perspective, the shadow “is roughly equivalent to the whole of the Freudian unconscious;” and Carl Jung himself asserted that “the result of the Freudian method of elucidation is a minute elaboration of man’s shadow-side unexampled in any previous age.” Contrary to a Freudian definition of shadow, however, the Jungian shadow can include everything outside the light of consciousness and may be positive or negative. Because one tends to reject or remain ignorant of the least desirable aspects of one’s personality, the shadow is largely negative. There are, however, positive aspects that may also remain hidden in one’s shadow (especially in people with low self-esteemanxieties, and false beliefs). “Everyone carries a shadow,” Jung wrote, “and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the blacker and denser it is.” It may be, in part, one’s link to more primitive animal instincts, which are superseded during early childhood by the conscious mind.

Visual:

Shadow by MoishPain

Music:

Breathe No More by Evanescence – lyrics @ Genius.com

Book:

Shadowmarch by Tad Williams

“That is the problem with rumors,” said Avin Brone. “It is very hard to prove that things are not true—much more difficult than proving they are.”

― Tad Williams, Shadowmarch

“Perhaps a heart was indeed like a piece of dry birchwood, and could only take fire and burn brightly once—that any fire that came after would be only an ember, smaller and cooler.”

― Tad Williams, Shadowmarch

[ Quote Source: goodreads.com ]

Book Haul, courtesy of Mr. Bookstooge’s Giveaway:

A special thanks goes out to Mr. Bookstooge this week for hooking me up with these lovely books via his giveaway. I’m quite busy today, so I won’t be putting images or links, but hopefully sometime soon you can get my two bits in the form of a review. With this and my Christmas haul, I sure don’t need to be buying any books anytime soon!

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #14 – Love Edition

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #13, in appreciation for artwork.

It’s Friday again. How am I doing? Yesterday was rough, but I got through it, thankfully unscathed and in tact. I have terrible anxiety sometimes and it comes out as flipping me into overdrive. I’m hoping for a great weekend filled with positivity, laughter, love and peace, lifting the ones up in my life that help me day in and day out, putting their differences aside, but also firmly standing up for what they obviously believe in. I think we should definitely stand up for what we believe as individuals. You know, we all have times when we clash and have differences ( which is a blessing in itself ), but at the end of the day I believe it’s true and carefully precision’d consideration that really takes us down through there, encompassing all things and ideas possible in order to come to a nice, solid conclusion. THAT shows careful consideration and love for yourself and others around you.

What does love mean to you?

Visual:

+Love Beyond The Stars+ by ERA-7

Music:

Lyrics @ Genius.com – this is one of my most favored electronic artists a.k.a John Gooch.

Book:

Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson – I’m currently reading Anathem by Neal Stephenson, along with a couple others, but it’s good enough, so far, that I went searching out this other book that I have no idea about.

“She’s a woman, you’re a dude. You’re not supposed to understand her. That’s not what she’s after…. She doesn’t want you to understand her. She knows that’s impossible. She just wants you to understand yourself. Everything else is negotiable.”

― Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash

“To condense fact from the vapor of nuance.”

― Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash

[ Quote Source: goodreads.com ]

Bonus:

Check out all the free, legit books @ The Open Library.

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #13

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #13, in appreciation for artwork.

It’s Friday again. How am I doing? I had some great relaxation during the night and that makes for a marvelous Friday to wrap the week up splendidly.

Book:

The Sigma Protocol by Robert Ludlum

“Calculate the odds, and recalculate, and recalculate again. And then just go with your gut instinct.”

*Chapter 5, Page 79, Robert Ludlum – The Sigma Protocol

“The Ghost was an in-house nickname for the longtime director of the Internal Compliance Unit, Alan Bartlett.”

*Chapter 3, Page 33. Robert Ludlum – The Sigma Protocol

[ Quote Source: freebooknotes.com ]

Music:

Hide U by Kosheen, remixed by DJ Marky – Lyrics @ Genius.com

Visual:

I’ve always LOVED these isometric pixel artworks – Study and living room design by  Cutiezor. By the way . . . you know what I heard about yesterday? Cryptoart. Weird, huh?

Bonus:

Hideo Kojima Is Writing a Book About His Creative Process

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Book Reviews

Review: Borderless by Eliot Peper

I’m absolutely loving this cover artwork. What a blessing.

Blurb:

Information is power, and whoever controls the feed rules the world in this all-too-plausible follow-up to the science fiction thriller Bandwidth.

Exiled from Washington after a covert operation gone wrong, Diana is building a new life as a freelance spy, though her obsessive secrecy is driving away the few friends and allies she can count on. When she’s hired to investigate the world’s leading techno capitalist, she unknowingly accepts an assignment with a dark ulterior purpose. Navigating a labyrinth of cutouts and false fronts, Diana discovers a plot to nationalize the global feed.

As tech and politics speed toward a catastrophic reckoning, Diana must reconcile the sins of her past with her dreams of tomorrow. How she deploys the secrets in her arsenal will shape the future of a planet on the brink of disaster. Doing the right thing means risking everything to change the rules of the game. But how much is freedom really worth?


It literally took me about four pages in this work to realize that I would love this book if it could only keep up with the foundation I had laid eyes on. And it did, filled to the brim with modern affirmations and epiphanies of realization, Borderless moves forward with all the things that wrap our current society with conundrums of . . . how do we move forward in a world where technology is trying to tell us too much?

Diana is an former CIA spy and is wrapped up in a swirling mission to take over a megacorporation called Commonweath that built a system that gives people all their information called the feed and their plan to form a one world government. The feed tells you when your friend is walking toward you down the hallway and that’s just the brunt of it. Every institution is a computer and the feed has all the information about everything. But, is the information being curated in disfavor? Are things being selectively hidden? What will they do to keep America running in this fictional world when this technology is trying to free itself? How will you be free when you are relying on bent, hand fed influences?

“The only way to fight someone that knew your weaknesses was to feign indifference.”

Borderless Pg. 109, Eliot Peper

I learned tons of words and phrases in this book and that makes me excited when they are used properly and put in place like a carefully set stone. While some words were repeated and just fancy names for foreign yogurt ( this was the worst, but still great example of the variety in flavor ), I thought it was great. I have a big long note in my note taking app that has a lot of the words I learned, but here I will pick four of them so that you may get a taste of what Borderless has in store as far as verbiage:

  • in·dom·i·ta·ble
    /inˈdämədəb(ə)l/
    adjective
    impossible to subdue or defeat.
    “a woman of indomitable spirit”
  • key·stone
    /ˈkēˌstōn/
    noun
    a central stone at the summit of an arch, locking the whole together.
  • re·al·po·li·tik
    /rāˈälpōliˌtēk/
    noun
    a system of politics or principles based on practical rather than moral or ideological considerations.
  • feign
    /fān/
    verb
    pretend to be affected by (a feeling, state, or injury).
    ARCHAIC
    invent (a story or excuse).
    ARCHAIC
    indulge in pretense.

Make no mistake, I am no salesman so when I gloat simply for the fact that this is book #2 in the series, it worked so well despite my jumpy list-add clicking fingers, AND the fact that I found it in the first place makes me an extra happy camper today in the reading department.

Recommendation:

Presented with more than plausible real-world problems in a not-too-distant future spanning places all over the world, Borderless not only delivers a solid story, bringing all the moving pieces of international adult playgrounds together together quite nicely, it has style, knowledge, form and continuous breaths of fresh air and a perfect pacing to match. There wasn’t a single page I didn’t highlight something of worth or was tempted, then giving in to research a reference to people, places and things. This story deserves ★★★★★ five stars out of five, all day long.

Music Bonus:

Dub FX with Not Cool – Lyrics @ Genius.com – Get down with the feel good jimmy jams!

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Witcher Edition: Friday Fun Trifecta #12

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #12, in appreciation for artwork.

It’s Friday again. How am I doing? Well, I stayed up half the night, just thinking about financials, watching Nordic Outback on Disney+ and the lot. It was nice to have some peace and quiet. Yennifer didn’t mind at all. I’m not sure how Misty would like me comparing her to Yennifer? It ain’t safe, it ain’t safe, it ain’t safe, it ain’t safe . . . 😇 She probably like it better than Kamaiyah, though.

Bonus:

Cemetary Gates by Pantera – Lyrics @ Genius.com – This song is beautifully performed ( this song has no vulgarities in it ) and in my opinion is one of the rarities, where we get live music that sounds superior to the original recording. R.I.P. Vinnie Paul and Darrel, we know you are in a better place. 😐

Visual:

TW – The Last Wish WALLPAPER 1 by astoralexander – The Witcher can safely smoke. He has mutant blood.

Music:

The Witcher 3 Soundtrack OST ( I think this technically NOT OST, it’s in game music ) – The Wolven Storm – Lyrics @ Genius.com – Anyone know what genre you would call this?

Book:

Blood of Elves by Andrzej Sapkowski
[ Image Source: gamepedia.com ]

“May the wind under your wings bear you where the “Mistakes,’ he said with effort, ‘are also important to me. I don’t cross them out of my life, or memory. And I never blame others for them.”

― Andrzej Sapkowski, Blood of Elves

“I manage because I have to. Because I’ve no other way out. Because I’ve overcome the vanity and pride of being different, I’ve understood that they are a pitiful defense against being different. Because I’ve understood that the sun shines differently when something changes. The sun shines differently, but it will continue to shine, and jumping at it with a hoe isn’t going to do anything.”

― Andrzej Sapkowski, The Last Wish

[ Quote Source: GoodReads.com ]

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music Resources

Witcher Edition: Friday Fun Trifecta #11

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #11, in appreciation for artwork.

It’s Friday again. How am I doing? I’m wore out. People wear me out. Then, I wear myself out. It’s a dangerous combination, especially when you don’t realize it’s Friday until way after you wake up; it’s sort of a nice surprise, however when you learn what day of the week it is. Make no mistake: it’s no where near as superior as Saturday. Let’s escape into a bit of Tolkien and visual arts and music inspired by his works!

Visual:

Out Of The Frying-Pan Into The Fire by yoshiyaki

Music:

I See Fire by Ed Sheeran, from The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – Lyrics @ Genius.com

Book:

The Hobbit, or There and Back Again by J.R.R. Tolkien

“May the wind under your wings bear you where the sun sails and the moon walks.”

― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, or There and Back Again

“There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom, blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”

― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, or There and Back Again

[ Quote Source: GoodReads.com ]

Does anyone have any background about the alternative title There and Back Again?

Did we find the source of the moonwalks, here in Tolkien’s writings? Michael Jackson knows . . . Is it because Michael Jackson almost tried to sue over it when he found out, then the lawyers reminded him about what year the book was written!?

I swear this guy is a re-incarnated Michael Jackson, except this is the body he was suppose to be in to begin with:

Save your tears over Weeknd’s plastic surgery

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Other Reviews

DNF Video Game: The Medium

THE MEDIUM

Discover a dark mystery only a medium can solve. Explore the real world and the spirit world at the same time. Use your psychic abilities to solve puzzles spanning both worlds, uncover deeply disturbing secrets, and survive encounters with The Maw – an entity born from an unspeakable tragedy.

The Medium is a third-person psychological horror game that features an innovative dual-reality gameplay, unique art style inspired by painter Zdzisław Beksiński, and original soundtrack co-composed by Arkadiusz Reikowski and Akira Yamaoka.


In my sometimes less-than-humble opinion, there are two kinds of games in the world: Game-games and games. Look, I’m joking, well, kind of. Let me explain: there are games where you actually have what seems like free choice. If you want to go all in and fight the high level characters, you most certainly can have at it and get humbled, like the zealous adventurer you are. Unfortunately, The Medium is the opposite of that: a walking simulator that tells what button to push and when to push it, where to walk and when to walk and also when to talk. I don’t like it. I want to run, jump, slash and meander. I want action and intensity, not to aimlessly walk in circles looking for a queue to push the X button.

Is anybody out there? Just nod if you can hear me.

Most interactive travels in the game present you with a setting viewed with a fixed, third-person camera as you walk from room-to-room and a Resident Evil type inventory system with the ability to combine items for puzzle solving and possibly more.

Something that did particularly catch my eye and make me go “hmmmm . . . ” was the fact that when looking in the below mirror, there was a strip on the rug that seemed to twinkle and glisten, no matter which angle I moved the camera, which gave me evidence that it wasn’t the mirror causing the anomaly:

See that funky strip on the rug?

That’s not saying The Medium is a bad game, it’s just not for me. I was stunned by some of the visuals that were displayed before the split screen duel-reality play, then the visual appeal seemed degraded ( which I vaguely remember an article confirming that degradation ). I played for a decent 3 hours on the game up until I reached the duel reality view at the camp. The whole premise of the game, being the main character is a medium named Marriane that exists in two different realities at once. Just after the start of the game, we are led to a funeral home and we meet Jack in the dark reality, that has recently died in the normal reality, then we are led to some kind of camp for investigations. This is where I stopped playing the game. I won’t go into any more details about the story, while the elements of the story did seem mildly interesting, it wasn’t good enough to keep me rattling my joystick and looking for a queue to hit X without it being dreadful and a chore. Luckily this game came with my Xbox Game Pass subscription. No love lost, no love found.

Recommendation:

★★☆☆☆ The Medium, an Microsoft Xbox Exclusive gets two stars out of five for lack of excitement and personal preference, however seems solid enough for story-game enjoyers to savor. If you want some, from what I saw non-wretched and light on actual vulgarities like lack of jump scares and gore then it may work even better for you in a search for a psychological survival horror game with class.

Intro video w/ credits

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.