Thursday, October 9, 2008

Video Games as Philosophy?

Matt Blum writes about the philosophical import of LEGO Batman, the Video Game.  He says there's meaning in the way that players can play good or evil characters and have essentially the same experience.  Read the article here on Wired magazine.  

Monday, October 6, 2008

Okay, A Computer Game

One of the things that got ahold of my imagination was the game "Civilization," a game in which you control a civilization and attempt to outplay all other civilizations vying for resources on the globe.  I loved it.  I played it too much.  I thought about it when I should have been thinking about other things.  I strategized when I was in the car, at surprising moments.  It made me think about it well outside the boundaries of my time playing the game.  I grew to resent it.  

But the game play, for me, was almost addictive.  Delete almost.  Was it sublime?  I'm not sure.  I was somehow aware of technique and style, and the game play was strategic.  So I thought strategy when I was thinking about it, not just immersed in the play of the game.  

Anyway, if it's simply a transporting out of the self and into the experience of the artifact, then it worked for me.  

Sublimity and Me

The Road was one recent book that got a nefarious hold on my imagination and wouldn't let go until I was done with it.  

I remember reading The Color Purple in a day, it got so ahold of me that I didn't want to put it down.

When I saw the poem "The Last Time Shorty Towers Fetched the Cows," I read it over and over, stuck with the phrasing and the images in the poem.  I loved it, and I wanted to write poems like that.

I love the ending of Shane, and I weep with the little boy as Shane rides away, the boy calling out after him to come back!

For some dumb reason I love the movie "The Wizard of Oz" in a way that's not entirely healthy or mature.  

I've always enjoyed Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" album, and some of the songs in it.  The title song always gets me fired up.  Another song, "Racing in the Streets," somehow gets to me--the lost hope of the characters.  

Sublime?  I don't know.  Maybe The Road is somehow sublime, its clarity of vision and excellent consistency.  You never get a break in the book into something decent, kind, pleasant, or hopeful.  Is that sublime?