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Games... Meh

Last Thursday in the weekly RS meeting, our boss, at his meanest best (bosses are always mean, unless you are one yourself), bent forward and said, “So, game reviews... What games are you playing?'' and looked around expectantly at us, eight people and me. When none of us were answering, he looked at yours truly and said, “Do a game review.”

“I play Cricket 2009.” The boss looked at me. I could hear a silent 'WHAT?' from the general direction.

“I have never actually played a game before.” The whole RS team looked at me. I could hear silent 'LOLWUT?' times 9.

True. I have never played a proper video game (apparently DX Ball 2 doesn't count). Don't laugh. Sympathise.

Buttons...the buttons!

Man, the games have buttons! Oh man, how many buttons does an average game have? A button for doing somersaults, one for cartwheels, another for flipping over (same thing), one for shooting, one for jumping, that pressed twice for jumping higher, one for looking left, one for crawling, one for pushing people in times of peace and the same for stabbing with a knife during close-combat and another one for killing the gamer like me. Seriously, how can you remember so many button combinations and use them precisely at the life-threatening moments like aliens running towards you (your in-game persona, I mean) or the opposing striker about to shoot the ball into the empty net? Why don't these gamer guys kill their characters when they mistakenly jump from high buildings because of not pressing the appropriate button? I do, always. I mean, where do I look at? The screen or my fingers? Call my hand-eye orientation poor.

Won't talk about game-pads or joysticks. They have way too many buttons. Seriously!

'Graphics' or whatever

I am a man that gets easily taken in by works of art. Beauty is truth. I search for the truth. Whenever I stare at the paintings of Picasso, I have this inexplicable feeling in my stomach that can be compared to wanting to puke. Modern art amazes me so much that my brain freezes trying to work out the meaning. Put the blame on the games of recent times: they have such wonderful graphic detail, the characters have so many emotions displayed on their faces, and the in-game movies are so colourful. The 'graphics' even dwarf the Machine Man! I exclaim in wonder and try to follow the speck of dust with my eyes until my player is killed or a goal is scored against my team. Bad A.I. Unfair play prevails.

Gamer Siblings

They eat, sleep and play with their PCs and PS2s and other gaming devices. If they do hand over the computer to you, they set a time limit and stare at you like vultures watching over their game (pun intended, bad though) 15 minutes before the end of the allotted time. Let's just say, you have a wonderful brother who let you try a game and is helpful enough to give directions and hints about game-play of a very simple game 'for a n00b like you' after sorting through tons. But even he will 'tch' and 'tsk' and 'sigh' and 'this game is not for you' you. And if he is not so wonderful (like, er... someone you know), then no words are needed. By the way, after years of not getting the opportunity to play video games, your reflexes go down to the depths of Mariana Trench and you become unable to gather enough confidence to actually try a game.

There you go. I can't play games. I don't care actually. Grapes are sour indeed.

By Jawad


To Be So Named!

Certain fantasy books will tell you that names have power, that they hold meaning in more than just one form. Certain other books dealing with psychology will tell you that a person, when he grows to understand his name, will seek to mould himself to fit that name, one of the reasons why you may see different spellings of the same name, because the person in question would also want the name to fit him, become his completely.

The catch or tragedy here is that names aren't things we can choose. We are given them and no matter how much you wished you were called Darius or Dante or something cool like that, you'll have to make do with being called plain old Abdul (no offence to Abdul, whoever you are, you have a nice name, good sir).

But other than given names, which we wear proudly in public, there is another, isn't there? Another more personal tag that you are known by, one that cleanly divides you into two. There is Gias, the name your friends know you by, and there is Gittoo, the name your family knows you by. You two are two very different people, aren't you?

And there is the crux of this article. No matter what we're called in public, it's the nicknames that define us. And how cruelly they define us too, read on to find out.

The Loos
This range of names does not necessarily refer to toilets (although they might, you never know). Among the general populace of nicknames this certain race is the most numerous. You get so many different kinds of Totlus and Boltus and Bablus and Shaplus out there. All of them different people, all of them actually the same in the end.

Why do we have so many of these nicknamed refugees seeking asylum? Well, because they are suffering for the insecurities of their parents. You see, all these Bablus and Totlus were actually kids their parents secretly thought would never learn to walk and talk at the same time. To console themselves and alleviate their mindless anxiety, these parents would take to cooing and cuddling their babes, and in those moments of coo, they would refer to their babes with completely gibberish names. Like Dablu.

The Joyous
This range refers to the class of nicknames that allude to something joyous or celebratory or anything that is sickly sweet and cloying in nature. Examples of such names would be the simple and ever-present Happy. This writer has known quite a few Happys and in general, they aren't happy about being called Happy. Then there's the synonymous Joy. We have even come across another synonym which starts with “G” and means happy and joyous and slightly bent as well. Sometimes parents refer to their wards as fruit, like Apple (pronounced Apel), which is supposed to be a happy fruit.

These phenomena occur when the kid in question happens to be a monster (or at least were irritating bundles of flesh when they were babies). The parents, out of denial and sleep deprivation are led to actually hallucinating that their kid is an angel and not a mutant spawn, which is why, in a fit of complete self indulgence they call their baby, simply, Baby.

Babies are supposed to be happy things right?

The Foreigners
While we have adhered to strictly Bangla names up until now, it is now time to take stock of the ethnic populace (we do not actually mean indigenous names, that would be racist). By ethnic we mean the nicknames that are not Bangla. Like Kyoshi. Or Arsenal (this is not a lie; this writer can corroborate this with pictures and a birth certificate). Or Priyanka, Pritha, Rajiv or any other Hindi name.

This happens every now and then because the parents of the kid were TV addicts. We know that it's unbelievable to think that couch potatoes might one day grow up to raise young but stranger things have happened. In an effort to feel closer to the glamorous lifestyles of the silver screen, these people name their kids Salman. Some of you might have gotten lucky with an okay name like Lamia; except it refers to a Greek child-eating daemon. Figures. Sometimes, they might just call you Sony. I know Sony, it's a tough world.

The Mispronounced
While we are on the subject of ethnicity, let's discuss certain other names that are very popular but to which very little attention is given. Rasel anyone? Or Pilot? See, these are English names that, over the years, have become Banglafied to the point of normalcy. You don't really pay attention to a Rasel until you remember that it's actually Russell. And then there are the weirdly euphemistic names that all your aunties seem to have, like Beauty.

Now, we believe these happen because of the extended stay of the British. Over the years, it's only natural for Russell to become Rasel or for a normal rickshaw puller to sport the name Pilot. Except it gets worse. There are people named Prince (pronounced Frince) and Jewel (pronounced Juel) and Omit (what the hell does this even mean, Amit? Emit?). But it's kinda weird, isn't it? We can't really attach any significance to the parents here. They just wanted their own little Leo (who isn't actually a Leo).

Well, you see, names attach meaning, some more than most. But sometimes, the meaning isn't exactly what you thought it would be. Like the meaning behind being called Anar (which could simultaneously refer to Anar Kali or Anarosh, the fruit). But at least take heart. You're not called Nigar are you? If so, then I'm sorry. By the way, this is the closest we'll ever come to saying the N word. Or Anas.

By Anondo
(da.phat.one@gmail.com)

 

 

 


 
 

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