kfwyre's recent activity

  1. Comment on Men Have No Friends and Women Bear the Burden in ~life

    kfwyre Link Parent
    I wrote about this very concept recently in the context of my students. Speaking for myself, "man" is the hardest identity of mine for me to buy into because I genuinely don't know what...

    I wrote about this very concept recently in the context of my students.

    Speaking for myself, "man" is the hardest identity of mine for me to buy into because I genuinely don't know what constitutes it. I know that I am one... and... that's it, I guess?

    All my other identities are straightforward. I'm definitely gay, and I know exactly what that means (and doesn't mean) and how it affects (and doesn't affect) my life. Being a teacher is remarkably straightforward, if draining. The word bookworm fits me easily. Husband too. And brother.

    But I struggle to identify with the idea of "man" because it just feels completely amorphous and intangible. I mean this not in a dysphoric sense, as it's not that I experience any discomfort, and I'm definitely not questioning my gender. I'm simply questioning how it gets defined.

    Being gay let me see behind the curtain of "toxic masculinity" and I quickly tore that down and tossed it in the trash where it belongs. Unfortunately, I have nothing else to put in its place. Toxic mascilinity said I couldn't be vulnerable, so I discarded the restriction, but it doesn't come with a replacement positive identifier. We don't go from "men can't show weakness" to "men must show weakness." If anything, we shifted a bunch of "men can't ______" to "men can _______ if they want to, but they don't have to." While that's certainly liberating and has opened up the doors to previously verboten acts like crying, it's also unrestrictive and ill-defined in its permissiveness.

    If we remove the parameters of toxic masculinity, it effectively gives us an infinite possibility space for what men can be, which can be as disorienting as it is liberating and empowering. Despite identifying as a man, being comfortable as a man, and living my life every day as a man, I am still fundamentally unable to answer the question "what does it mean to be a man?"

    2 votes
  2. Comment on What's something you want to bring up but never get asked about or have the chance to? in ~talk

    kfwyre Link Parent
    I'm of the same generation as you, and I grew up not discussing almost anything of import. Politics was off the table, while religion was not insofar as we could talk about surface level stuff but...

    I'm of the same generation as you, and I grew up not discussing almost anything of import. Politics was off the table, while religion was not insofar as we could talk about surface level stuff but never really dive deep into the tougher theological or philosophical concepts. My parents were big on the idea that negative emotions or feelings should be given over to God, so if we ever had uncertainty or doubt or confusion, we weren't supposed to ask about it but instead simply pray.

    I understand where they were coming from, but it was an incredibly stifling way to grow up. I remember getting my hands on a tome called Systematic Theology in college and it was like a massive door opened for me that I never knew was closed. Here was a book that encouraged deep, profound thinking! It was so much more than "unquestionably accept" or, in the absence of that, "unfailingly submit."

    I don't necessarily know where I'm going with this story other than it mirrors what you've shared. That said, I would love to hear your thoughts on the influence of Judaism and Christianity on western culture, if you're willing to share. I know that's a huge topic, so feel free to narrow it down to whatever you're interested in addressing.

    I'm also curious to know what have been some of the more important takeaways from your Biblical studies. (I actually meant to ask you the last time you posted about it but forgot!) How has studying the Bible in a more rigorous and formal sense changed your understanding, perspective, and faith (if you're a believer)?

    2 votes
  3. Comment on What are some ideas and experiences that are underexplored in gaming? in ~games

    kfwyre Link Parent
    You've described something I've felt for a long time but can't really articulate well. In my mental shorthand I call it the "actor problem" which is a terrible title, but I'm going to roll with...

    You've described something I've felt for a long time but can't really articulate well. In my mental shorthand I call it the "actor problem" which is a terrible title, but I'm going to roll with it. The "actor problem" is the idea that videogames have a built-in limitation by nature of making the player an actor. I'm using this not in the stage/movie sense but in the one-who-takes-actions sense (so perhaps it's better called the "agency problem").

    Here's the problem: because videogames make the player an actor, they fundamentally limit the stories they can tell to ones that are focused on actions given to the player. Take nearly any game that has you playing as a soldier. What are the actions of war? Running, shooting, bombing, etc. The horrors of war, however, aren't usually actions but outcomes, and so they can't be expressed through the vocabulary of that type of game. An early, painful player death would be an accurate real-world look at war, but it would not stand up as a game because, in removing the actor, you've ended the game. No more actions.

    Now, this is an intentionally narrow view of games, and I don't mean it to be prescriptive but more of a consideration. I am not attempting to say that games have hard limitations they cannot work around--more that unless a game's design fundamentally takes the actor problem into account, it'll be limited to a specific type of story. I'll also add that there's nothing inherently wrong with the existence of a limitation in the first place, and each medium has its own distinct ones. For example, movies and TV face a similar challenge in having to externalize and make visual conflict and thought. I do firmly believe that limitations can fuel creativity, and that ultimately creativity can be used to circumvent nearly any limitation.

    So, with this in mind, how could a game change up its story to comment on the horrors of war rather than a glorification of it? Well, they could start by shifting the actions. Instead of playing as a soldier, if the game makes you a medic, you have an entirely new vocabulary of play and your actions aren't about the running, shooting, and bombing, but about the awful results of those. Alternatively, the game could make you a city planner having to rebuild after a war. Your actions, such as allocating resources and prioritizing projects would dictate the story. Each of these would allow for better commentary on the horrors of war because each has actions based around war's awful outcomes.

    Even returning to soldier-based games, they could take this principle and shift the actions of the game to be less about fighting and more about your platoon and squadmates. Have non-combat sequences where you bond with your buddies or you talk about homesickness or fear. Have a consistent rhythm where the game lets you talk to your bunkmate each night before bed so that the first night he's not there we feel his absence and contemplate him being gone for good. Or maybe he's there but we're injured and can't speak. The game could create rich, interactive commentary about pain or loss, but it can only do so if they've strategically set up their actions to convey that.

    I realize I'm pontificating a bit, but I say all of this to agree with you. Videogames haven't really explored the horrors of war well, and it goes beyond the idea that much of gaming boils down to mere power fantasy. On top of the "actor problem" is what you also identified: that games have to be appealing on some level. Make the game too real, and no one will want to play it. Make it too engaging or fun, however, and it becomes a dishonest portrayal of what it's trying to comment on.

    3 votes
  4. Maybe it's a delicate topic people always dance around. Maybe it's a sensitive topic people just avoid. Maybe it's something that's been brewing but you never really seem to have an outlet for it....

    Maybe it's a delicate topic people always dance around. Maybe it's a sensitive topic people just avoid. Maybe it's something that's been brewing but you never really seem to have an outlet for it. Maybe it's something niche enough that you don't ever really see anything else about it around.

    Whatever it is, what is it you want to talk about but never seem to be able to?

    9 votes
  5. Comment on What are you reading these days? #20 in ~books

    kfwyre Link
    I'm right in the middle of The Invisible Orientation: An Introduction to Asexuality by Julie Sondra Decker at the moment. I don't identify as ace, so I can't speak about it from that perspective,...

    I'm right in the middle of The Invisible Orientation: An Introduction to Asexuality by Julie Sondra Decker at the moment. I don't identify as ace, so I can't speak about it from that perspective, but for someone who picked it up because I was interested in learning more about the asexual identity, it's been a great resource. The author is articulate and organized, and thus far it seems to be ideal for anyone wanting a primer on ace identity and culture.

    2 votes
  6. Comment on Playdate. A New Handheld Gaming System. in ~games

    kfwyre Link
    The idea of the console following a television-style "season" with a new game each week adds the potential for this to be a neat little social event. Instead of just getting a handheld with some...

    The idea of the console following a television-style "season" with a new game each week adds the potential for this to be a neat little social event. Instead of just getting a handheld with some new stuff to play, you can join with others online who are all playing the same game that week, talk shop about your experiences, and speculate about what's to come the following week. In the same way we had weekly Game of Thrones discussion threads, I'm sure plenty of communities will have Playdate discussion threads.

    It's a cool idea, and if they're really clever, they'll have stuff in the games that links them together or into a larger picture to really drive online engagement. If it turned out the games were all part of some ARG or a shared universe, for example, it could be quite the phenomenon.

    4 votes
  7. I was thinking about this question recently because I finished watching Game of Thrones and it made me want to play a game where I get to be a badass dragon. Unfortunately, it turns out there are...

    I was thinking about this question recently because I finished watching Game of Thrones and it made me want to play a game where I get to be a badass dragon. Unfortunately, it turns out there are surprisingly few games that tackle that experience.

    I also recently played a game called 1979 Revolution: Black Friday, which attempts to inform the player about a real event in history through Telltale-style adventure gameplay. Though it's fictionalized, I realized while playing that it's as close to a documentary as I've come in gaming, which I would argue is another unexplored area.

    That said, I'm curious to see what people here think.

    • What are some ideas/experiences that games haven't tackled, or have hardly scratched the surface of?
    • Why do you think this area has gone untouched for so long? Oversight? Tough to design around? Unfeasible? Unfun?
    • Are there any games that do fit your bill? Are they any good?
    • If you had to design a game to fill the niche you identified, what might it be like?
    11 votes
  8. Comment on GOG Galaxy 2.0 - All your games and friends in one place in ~games

    kfwyre Link Parent
    In the time since GOG Galaxy has been out, I went from being a full-time Windows user, to hopping between Windows and Linux, to now being a full-time Linux user. Prior to going to Linux full-time...

    In the time since GOG Galaxy has been out, I went from being a full-time Windows user, to hopping between Windows and Linux, to now being a full-time Linux user. Prior to going to Linux full-time I was a GOG devotee and used them as my primary gaming platform, but now that I no longer run Windows I threw my lot back in with Steam.

    I was hoping Valve's Proton initiative would light a fire under GOG. After all, their main competitor was making Linux a priority, GOG had made a push to support Ubuntu years ago, and, as you pointed out, it's heavily requested on their site and has been for years. As such, it wasn't entirely out of the realm of possibility that they would eventually implement Linux support for Galaxy. Unfortunately, with this announcement, it's clear that Linux continues to be low priority for them, and I'll continue buying my games on Steam.

    It's sad, because I really did love GOG, and I think they're an incredibly valuable platform to have in the PC space. I just can't justify continuing to buy from them when Steam's Linux support is so much better.

    7 votes
  9. Comment on Having a Library or Cafe Down the Block Could Change Your Life in ~life

    kfwyre Link Parent
    This won't be telling you anything you don't already know, but for anyone unfamiliar with it: The Book Thief is simply excellent. It foregoes nearly every middle grade/young adult lit trope and...

    This won't be telling you anything you don't already know, but for anyone unfamiliar with it: The Book Thief is simply excellent. It foregoes nearly every middle grade/young adult lit trope and instead heads in the direction of full-fledged literature that's fully accessible to kids yet still able to be appreciated by adults. The book's opening narration, with a beleaguered, tired Death being overworked from war, is outright haunting. I read a lot of books for this age group (I'm a teacher), and I think The Book Thief is one of the absolute best.

    Also worth noting: middle grade books are increasingly addressing social justice issues in ways that are meaningful and accessible to kids, so there is now plenty out there that deals with a variety of topics at an age-appropriate level. I don't know of any off-hand for vaping or uniforms (though I'm sure they're there if you look), but The One and Only Ivan is good for animal rights and there are tons of books that focus on LGBTQ rights and characters, which has been a recent focus of publishers (which helps correct for their complete absence when I was growing up). With all that said, I'm pretty well-acquainted with books for your daughter's age range, so if you ever need any pointers, recommendations, or rundowns, shoot me a PM. I'd be happy to help!

    3 votes
  10. Warning: this post may contain spoilers

    The series is done! Let's have a bit of fun with it now that it's over.

    Choose characters from the show and assign them a popular song based on their story arc, characteristics, or whatever else you feel like highlighting.

    Example:

    • Daenerys gets Bon Jovi's "You Give Love a Bad Name" because she's grappling with the fact that Jon gives love a bad name (namely, Targaryen). Oh, and she's also shot through the heart.

    Be serious or be cheeky--whatever floats your boat as we sail to find out what's west of Westeros.

    7 votes
  11. I am currently decluttering, and I have boxes upon boxes of accumulated tech stuff (for lack of a better term). USB cables, dongles, flash drives, cameras, MP3 players, phones, installation discs,...

    I am currently decluttering, and I have boxes upon boxes of accumulated tech stuff (for lack of a better term). USB cables, dongles, flash drives, cameras, MP3 players, phones, installation discs, etc.

    It's a giant mess that I want to be rid of, I just don't know the best way to go about it and thus have some questions:

    1. What's my best course of action: Is "electronics recycling" the way to go? Should I sort it and donate the useful stuff to a thrift store? Would local mom-and-pop computer shops potentially be interested in some of it?

    (Note: I have no interest in extracting money from the hoard and would be happy for the useful stuff in there to go to a "good home" that can take advantage of it.)

    1. Is there anything that's simply not worth donating/recycling? Should I simply throw some older stuff (e.g. floppies, component cables, anything with a parallel port) out, or does recycling somehow reconstitute the metals/resources in them?

    2. I have several dead hard drives and flash drives that have personal information on them that I was never able to wipe. Should I just hold onto these indefinitely since someone could use them maliciously, or is the likelihood of that happening close to nil?

    18 votes
  12. Maybe you mislearned a fact in elementary school. Maybe you misjudged someone's character. Maybe you took a risk thinking it would pay off and it backfired. Maybe you made the complete wrong call,...

    Maybe you mislearned a fact in elementary school. Maybe you misjudged someone's character. Maybe you took a risk thinking it would pay off and it backfired. Maybe you made the complete wrong call, maybe at the wrong time, and maybe for the wrong reasons. We've all made mistakes, errors, and slip ups. We've all had to learn some things the hard way. And we've all had beliefs we were certain of flip, change, or decay--either over time or in a single, often difficult moment.

    So, with all that in mind:

    • What's something you were completely wrong about?
    • How did you find out you were wrong?
    • What was it like to confront that?
    • Were there any repercussions?
    • Has that experience changed your outlook now?
    • Can other people learn from your situation from the outside, or does the new understanding come from the experience itself?
    • Are you better off because of it, or did it cause some harm?
    18 votes
  13. Comment on The Teacher Shortage is Real, Large and Growing, and Worse Than We Thought (Part 1) in ~life

    kfwyre Link Parent
    Can you expand a bit on becoming a developer? I ask only because I'm going to be leaving teaching in the coming years and one of my potential paths is something tech-oriented. I loved the...

    Can you expand a bit on becoming a developer? I ask only because I'm going to be leaving teaching in the coming years and one of my potential paths is something tech-oriented. I loved the intro-level programming courses I took ~15 years ago and am decently techy. Would it be possible for me to spend a year or two self-teaching and land a job, or is that unfeasible?

  14. Comment on The Teacher Shortage is Real, Large and Growing, and Worse Than We Thought (Part 1) in ~life

    kfwyre Link Parent
    Anecdotally speaking, I know several teachers who took jobs with significantly lower incomes and were significantly happier for it. Teaching is so terrible right now that people are willing to...

    Anecdotally speaking, I know several teachers who took jobs with significantly lower incomes and were significantly happier for it.

    Teaching is so terrible right now that people are willing to take substantial paycuts to leave it. I recently decided I will be leaving the field for good and will likely have to take at least a 10K loss in salary to do so. It'll still be worth it.

    5 votes
  15. Comment on Uber’s plans include attacking public transit: documents filed for IPO reveal plans to privatize transportation, getting riders off public buses and trains and onto "Uber buses." in ~news

    kfwyre Link Parent
    Agreed. Plus, assuming Uber will play fair is quite naive at this point. Simply look at the Criticism section of their Wikipedia page and you'll find a wealth of awful behavior. It's not just the...

    Agreed. Plus, assuming Uber will play fair is quite naive at this point. Simply look at the Criticism section of their Wikipedia page and you'll find a wealth of awful behavior. It's not just the usual criticisms of their model, but plenty of outright shady stuff, like hiring people to disrupt competitors' services by requesting and then cancelling thousands of rides, or setting up a protocol that let them avoid giving rides to regulatory agents and would hide their activity from law enforcement officers in places where it's illegal.

    I understand the argument for ride-hailing services, and I myself have used (and liked) Lyft, but I won't give Uber my business.

    4 votes
  16. Comment on Alabama Senate passes nation’s most restrictive abortion ban, which makes no exceptions for victims of rape and incest in ~news

    kfwyre Link Parent
    I wrote about abortion from a Christian perspective in another thread a while back, if you're interested. I'll give the same qualifier here that I did there: those are not my personal beliefs but...

    I wrote about abortion from a Christian perspective in another thread a while back, if you're interested. I'll give the same qualifier here that I did there: those are not my personal beliefs but instead are a rough summary of the beliefs of some people that I know. Hopefully it can give you some insight into how they approach the issue and why a law this restrictive would still be supported by so many.

    4 votes
  17. Comment on What's missing from your life? in ~life

    kfwyre Link Parent
    Your talk of "masking" reminds me a lot of growing up gay in a very masculine, very homophobic culture. I learned very early on what MEN do and what MEN don't do. I absolutely hated the feeling of...

    Your talk of "masking" reminds me a lot of growing up gay in a very masculine, very homophobic culture. I learned very early on what MEN do and what MEN don't do. I absolutely hated the feeling of clipping my fingernails, but I was made to trim them frequently lest they grow too long and look too girly. I was told to walk "rougher" and "less swishy" because that wasn't how MEN walked, despite the fact that walking is just sort of, automatic? Walking any other way felt weird and alien, but I did it because I was supposed to. One time a girl cousin of mine wanted help making these very cool bracelets, so I joined her in putting them together. It was so awesome! Until I learned that MEN not only couldn't wear jewelry, but they shouldn't have anything to do with it in the first place. Anything that could be construed as potentially feminine was treated as toxic to me.

    I spent my entire childhood and a non-negligible amount of my adult life "masking" who I was, and it was isolating and exhausting. I'm sorry that you've had to live like that, and that there isn't an easy way out from it. One of the defining moments of my life was finally being "out" in an accepting queer community, and it was affirming and life-changing. To pull a quote from Rent (a pivotal musical in my life, and the lives of countless other queer-identified individuals), I felt what it was like to be an us for once, instead of a them. I feel like this is what you're describing when you say you want to be around people you feel at ease with, and I sincerely hope you're able to find a group like that.

    I will say that I think appreciation for neurodiversity is a new horizon for social progress. I have seen acceptance for queer people take hold relatively quickly within my lifetime, and I see similar strides being made towards neurodivergent individuals. We're definitely not where we need to be yet, but I can say that in education alone the understanding of, appreciation for, and methods used to help students with autism have developed considerably just within the last decade. Ten years ago me, my colleagues, and my students knew nothing of autism beyond its name as a diagnosis. Now we have much deeper understanding and empathy. Much of that has come from advocacy work done by individuals like you who help us understand your experiences, so I want to thank you for sharing your honest thoughts here.

    I know it probably wasn't easy for you to type all this out and relive your trauma by sharing it. Your strikethrough text and its culminating sentence took my breath away, because I know I have been that adult before, treating functional differences as if they were behavioral issues. If I can offer you any sort of peace here, it would be that many of us who were once ignorant are learning, and many of us who were once close-minded are listening. Thank you for speaking your truth. I know this is not a salve to your current and past pain, but I do the work that I do because I believe in a future where individual differences of all types will be more respected, understood, and appreciated.

    We're not there yet, and society has a lot of homework to do, but we're moving in that direction. I know you are looking for your tribe, your us, and I hope that you find your us as much as I hope that we can learn to be the us for you.

    3 votes
  18. Comment on What's an important life lesson that you learned far later than you should have? in ~talk

    kfwyre Link Parent
    While resource conservation is certainly a lesson that we can take from them, it was not the reason they did what they did, nor do I feel that I grew up with a good sense of that. It was never...

    While resource conservation is certainly a lesson that we can take from them, it was not the reason they did what they did, nor do I feel that I grew up with a good sense of that. It was never about the bigger picture of, say, environment or the society, but instead a much more self-centered view of "this is good for ME." Furthermore, we did buy a lot of stuff we didn't actually need--we just did it on the cheap or in bulk!

    I should also mention that my story with my parents is a lot more complicated than I've laid out. What I shared is true in the lived sense, and I offered it here to give context to the lesson I learned. Unfortunately, it's far from a complete picture. My upbringing was marked by trauma, pathology, and deep repression rooted in religion.

    Not only did we rarely throw things out, for example, but my parents would go through our trash every single week looking for contraband and as a way of keeping tabs on what we kids were up to. In hindsight I also realize that was probably somewhat driven by their hoarding tendencies, as occasionally they would pick out things that presumably still had utility, but it was primarily a method used to enforce compliance rather than conservation.

    I will say that now that I've gotten older, I've been able to develop a much healthier relationship with my things. Others have mentioned Marie Kondo, and I will gladly add my name to the list. She helped me fundamentally change how I view possessions in my life, as have other writers about minimalism. While I can't say that I live a minimalist life yet, I'm continually taking more and more steps in that direction.

    3 votes
  19. Comment on What's an important life lesson that you learned far later than you should have? in ~talk

    kfwyre Link Parent
    Indeed! I cannot stress enough that even though I am aware of the tactic and understand it at a rational level, I am still somehow susceptible to it. Presumably lots of conditioning, plus other...

    Indeed!

    I cannot stress enough that even though I am aware of the tactic and understand it at a rational level, I am still somehow susceptible to it. Presumably lots of conditioning, plus other factors in my life that would feed compulsive shopping/consumption.

    I'm reminded of the clothing retailer JC Penney. They are famous for having tons of sales and rotating discounts. I grew up reading their circulars every week, and almost every one promised it was the "BIGGEST SALE OF THE YEAR!" which I believe was a calculated tactic where they would just put slightly more items on sale than last time so the claim was technically true each time.

    In 2012, under a new CEO, the company said it was going to do away with its sales shenaningans and offer instead a "fair price" for all of its wares. As you can probably guess, it went terribly, and they walked back the policy and reinstated their previous discount scheme.

    On a surface level, it actually makes perfect sense. If you sell a shirt for $20, the customer gets a $20 shirt. If you sell a shirt for $20 but say it's originally $80, the customer still gets a $20 shirt, but they feel like the shirt is better because of the associated "price" AND they get the pscyhological boost of feeling like they have gotten a bargain. What's going to be better for sales? Definitely the latter.

    In fact, I think more than anything that's my problem: I've effectively conditioned myself to enjoy the feeling of a sale rather than the sale itself, and therefore seek it out even when I know it's bad for me, a waste, or something I don't genuinely need or even want.

    5 votes
  20. Comment on What's an important life lesson that you learned far later than you should have? in ~talk

    kfwyre Link
    I grew up ultra frugal. I genuinely thought we were poor most of my life because of how my parents raised me. I learned to brush my teeth by using only the smallest dab of toothpaste, and then I...

    I grew up ultra frugal. I genuinely thought we were poor most of my life because of how my parents raised me. I learned to brush my teeth by using only the smallest dab of toothpaste, and then I learned that even a seemingly empty tube was hiding a few extra uses that could be yours if you flattened it out against the countertop. And then I learned that you could cut the tube open and skim the insides to get a couple more brushes out of it before throwing it away!

    We did stuff like that with everything. Saving parts of sheets of paper that didn't have writing on it, or paper with writing only on one side. Food was never thrown out, no matter how little, and we would find creative reuses for everyday items all the time in lieu of throwing them away.

    Turns out we weren't poor, my parents were just penny pinchers with hoarder tendencies and a little bit of financial paranoia. As such, we made every dollar go as far as it could by making whatever it bought go as far as it could. Furthermore, we also never spent full price. On anything. Ever. My parents believed that buying anything full priced was tantamount to getting scammed. Instead, nearly everything was bought on sale or with coupons, usually both. My parents would always encourage me to maximize my allowance, and I was doing excessive comparison shopping from an early age, before buying even small items. Sales and savings were the dominant--nay--only way I knew how to shop.

    Fast forward to me becoming a gainfully employed adult, and the neurosis that my parents modeled and unintentionally fostered took strong hold. I now had disposable income, and what did I do with it? I bought things on sale.

    What things? Anything really. It was honestly less about what I was getting and more about the experience of getting it at discount. Physical goods were a treat, but they're ultimately limited by the physical space you can put them in. Digital goods, however? Almost limitless.

    My Kindle and Steam libraries are an embarassment. I could put off buying games and books for the next 5 years and still not get through what I accumulated. I got everything in there on the cheap. Most of my Kindle books were $2 or less, from the daily deals or price drops. A big chunk of my Steam games are from sales, where I would sort by price discount and buy almost anything that was 80% or more off. But the real killer was Humble Bundle. Those were simply too good to pass up. And so I never did, and not passing up led to piling up, and now I have an unnecessary, unfinishable, and honestly uninteresting hoard to show for it.

    The life lesson I learned way too late in all of this is that sales aren't savings--they're spendings. You are not gaining any money in a sale. You are losing it. You might be losing less than you would otherwise, but you are still, unconditionally, losing money. It's patently obvious to most anyone, and I should know better by now--I do know better by now--but sales have a way of rewiring my brain so that I fall right back into their traps. It's like the indulgence of a monetary FOMO under the premise of responsible financial decision-making. They make me feel like I am doing the right thing! Look at how much money I'm saving!

    Of course, it's the complete opposite, and my hundreds of unread books and games (among other things in my life) are an awful testament to the fact that I've spent more on "things" overall than I would have if I'd instead paid full price for only items I was truly interested in. That's not saving--that's spending. Saving is the act of moving extra money to my holding account, not buying cheap shit and patting myself on the back for it.

    I wish I could say, now that I'm aware of the exploit, that my brain has been patched and is no longer vulnerable, but it's unfortunately not true. I found myself eyeing the Humble Monthly subscription just yesterday not because I actually want it but because I could get a coupon for it! Yuck.

    I also wish I could say that I'm still young and blame it on age or immaturity, but that's also not true. This is a lesson that's come genuinely later than it should, and I feel like it's one I'm going to have to continually relearn as I age. Old habits die hard, and this one never seems to be able to get all the way to 100% off.

    39 votes