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Saturday, April 27, 2024

Mayans chose not to invent the wheel due to the long term effects they were able to foreshadow.

 After we visited the Mayan pyramids in Tulum Mexico my family member posed a good question: if they were the first civilization to invent the number 0, they had a stone wheel like object as a basketball hoop, were very accurate in their mayan calendar, why didn’t they invent the wheel? They were so close.

Well… my first initial instinct was that a civilization this intelligent willingly chose not to create something due to their visions of the long term outcome. Maybe they thought the wheel would cause a lot of long term suffering. I didn’t know exactly why though.

Then, in the midst of pondering this question, I came across a separate piece of information that connected the dots for me.

Before the wheel, a human being could only carry the weight one human could hold. For farming, construction, and transportation.

After the wheel, those that owned the carts, wheelbarrows, and horse carriages were able to carry the weight that it would take 10 humans could hold. (For example). *I have been informed that horses only came to the Americas with the Europeans, but even just the wheelbarrow gave the ability for a person to carry more weight than they originally could hold, hence giving an advantage to those that owned these wheelbarrows. 

The wheel lead to mass inequalities between those that owned the means of production and those that didn’t.

In the Mayan civilization the kings home was not much bigger than the citizen’s.

Maybe the Mayans saw the inequality this invention would inevitably lead to and the insane competitive advantage it would give to those that had the resources to afford these new inventions.

For the farmer that didn’t have a horse plow or a wheelbarrow, he only had two options:

Either compete on his own and get crushed by farmers who own the machines


Borrow equipment, or work for a farmer that owns these means of production

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Top 10 OJ Simpson goof-ups By: Holden Kodish

1. When he took his first steps.
 Baby OJ actually didn’t start by taking steps. Instead, he drove a stroller on a low-speed police chase.

2. The Time OJ Simpson rapped the opening to his TV show.
Yeah, did you know OJ Simpson had a prank show? And it was called Juiced? That just sounds gross.

3. The time he tried to wear fifty gloves on one hand.
The thing is, he sized them out too. Like, his hand was huge by the end of it.

4. The time he murdered his ex-wife.
Nicole Brown Simpson was murdered on June 12th, 1994, in what may have been the worst career choice made by a football player until Brady signed with the Bucks.

5. When he missed Mother's Day.
After his wife died in that “unexpected accident”, he actually missed the first Mother’s Day afterward. He should have gone all Mr. Mom on it. Picture, OJ Simpson, in an apron.

6. When he also murdered his ex-wife's friend.
During the events of 6/12/94, he also murdered Ron Goldman, a waiter who was “Holding Ms. Simpsons glasses” which… has to be a euphemism, right?

7. When he got Norm Macdonald fired from SNL.
Man, learn how to take a joke OJ. Instead, one of the funniest men in the world got kicked off the perfect show for him. You’ll never be forgiven for this one OJ

8. When he literally wrote a book called “If I did it”
I mean, I don’t know what’s funnier. The Goldman family re-naming it to (make the "if" really small) if I did it, or them including a foreward called “Yes, he did it.”

9. When he robbed Bruce Fromong 13 years later
Why would you risk it again? Not even the juice could outrun Nevada state law. Luckily there was no murder (or so he would have you believe)

10. When he joined Twitter
“Hello Twitter World” still cracks me up. And while we may have lost… well, not a hero, but we still have the parody accounts!

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Top 10 Excuses to Use When Abandoning Your Family By: Holden Kodish

 “I gotta get a pack of milk and a carton of cigarettes” An oldie but a goodie.
#9: “Honey, I love you, but you knew when you chose to marry me that I would
put music over our love.” You and the three guys you met in high school could become the next
Beatles, if only that bitch wife of yours would stop wanting to spend time with you.
#8: “I have amnesia, and don’t remember who you are.” Extra points if your marriage is the only thing you don’t remember.
#7: “My dad abandoned us, and his dad abandoned him. It’s a family tradition.”
They have to respect other people's customs, even if they disagree with them.
#6: “I’ve been abducted by aliens/vampires/the CIA.” Even if you do return, your
life will have been dramatically altered. Will they even recognize the new you when you return?
#5: “I just find your sister hotter.” Sometimes, you back the wrong horse, and the
only thing you can do is admit your mistakes and correct course.
#4: “The mothership is calling me home. My planet needs me.” I mean, you
already gave her a child. What, does she expect you to stay around?
#3: “Damn, our kids are ugly as shit.” Why put all your work into someone who
won’t extend the family bloodline?
#2: “My first family is complaining I don’t spend enough time with them.” They did
come first. It’s only fair that you prioritize them first.
#1:  “It’s just a prank bro.” Damn, she got got. Maybe next time, don’t fall in love,

Monday, April 8, 2024

Best Hidden Gem Small Businesses in Newton MA

These are the best hidden gem small businesses according to various people in the area. We will be doing a written and video review for each of these. I went to the Knotty Pine today, Solar Eclipse day but it was closed. It's a diner in West Newton, which I've driven by a million times but never even noticed. Amazing how many recommendations we got and how little of them I knew. Truly a list of HIDDEN gems. 

If you want to contribute to the conversation and cast your submission for a review, comment below. 

These are not in order of best to worst, they are all in different categories of small business.

  1. The Paper Mouse in West Newton - Gift Shop
  2. Depasquale's Deli on Adams - In Newton *NOT depasquales at nightcap's corner
  3. Markettiamo for Italian imported goods and sandwiches (and salciccia and soppressata)
  4. Shogun in West Newton - Has been open for over 40 years and very authentic 
  5. Otake Sushi in Newton Highlands
  6. Echo Bridge Restaurant '
  7. Little L Bakery on California
  8. D&A's Pizza in Nonantum
  9. Knotty Pine Diner in Auburndale - Cash only, but they have an ATM
  10. Grandma's Kitchen. Really good Taiwanese food 
  11. Moldova
  12. Flourhouse Bakery in Nonantum
  13. Chung-Shin Yuan on California St
  14. Indulge Candy Store in Newton Highlands

Friday, April 5, 2024

Cryplandia Short Story #1 - @pilgrimapes

Michael felt dizzy. You’d think being on a boat so long, he’d get used to it. But he always woke up with his inner ear swirling like a hurricane. He got up and took stock of his room. “Mom, check! Michelle, check! Dad…” He saw the monkey lying on the bed next to his mother. Despite the time they spent together, Michael sometimes couldn’t seperate his dad from the other monkeys. Everyone just looked so similar. He spotted a red pair of sunglasses over the monkey’s mouth. He moved them over his father’s eyes. That was him alright. “Dad, check!” Everyone was here. Mom, Dad, Son, Sister. Michael grabbed a cigarette and headed towards the Casino.

This was Michaels's usual routine. Wake up, count his family, go to the casino, stumble home drunk. There wasn’t really a whole lot to do besides that, come to think of it. Sometimes his mom and Michelle would go to the spa, or he’d join his dad in the business center. But after years of travel, even the most interesting parts of a place become mundane and boring. Michael expected another session of blowing his daily chips, and hitting on some (not interested) waitresses. But when he got out of his room, something was different. All of the other monkeys were gathered around the gangway opening. Michael woke up his parents. “Mike, I swear, if you’re waking us up to ask for more money, I will kick you straight into the water,” His father said. “No, Dad, something happening. Something big.” He hurried his family out of their cabin, as they headed towards the rest of the families.

The noise of the crowd began to outpace his own internal monologue. Suddenly, A big orangutan wearing a captain’s hat walked in front of everyone. Captain Orangebeard. “Muddahs, Faddahs, Sons, and Sistahs!” He shouted. The troop went quite. “The time has comed. Our years long voy-ige has reached it’s destinationion.” Orangebeards weird speech choices aside, all of the monkeys knew what he meant. “Welcomes, to Cryptlandia. Junglies, Deserts, Forests, Volcanies, all and more can be found here. But that’s not what brought youse here.” Orangebeard held up a little coin. “These are CryptCoins. There are four of them on the island. If you can get all four, and return to the boat, you will recieve your hearts desire, whatever it may be.” 

Michael perked up. “Did he just say free Liquor?” He asked his sister “He said Hearts Desire, Michael.” Michael paused “Is there a difference?” She rolled her eyes.

“Now, youse can do whatever youses need to do to get the coins, excepted for one thing.” Orangebeards face turned somber. “No Killing. None.” And just as fast as it had left, Orangebeards goofy expression returned. “Are youses readied?” The monkeys nodded. “Are youses settied?” Once again, they nodded. “Then goeses!” And in a flash, the monkey’s scattered.

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Why most video game adaptations don’t work (And why some do) By: Holden Kodish (BIG H)

Hey y’all. Bit more casual Holden, coming at you with my opinions. But, as we all know, opinions are like assholes, we all have one, and most of them stink. So if you disagree with mine, comment, and tell me why!

Anyway, preamble aside, I want to talk about video games. More specifically, video game adaptions. In the next few months, two of my favorite game series are getting adaptions, those being Borderlands, and Fallout. Now, I haven’t seen these yet, just the trailers, but they’ve given me something to think about. Why did I get excited about the Fallout show, but am still nervous about Borderlands? I think it’s do to one thing, reliance on source material.

Now, Borderlands has always been one of my favorite series. As soon as I could play rated M games (at 18, thanks Dad) it was the first one I checked out. Well, Borderlands 2 was the first one, but you get what I mean. And I recently replayed it and still had just as much fun the 10th time as I did the first time. Whether that’s due to the writing, the gameplay, or the ability to shoot a bunch of mentally ill people, I’m not sure, but it all just works. Meanwhile, I’ve been playing Fallout since 4 was released. I remember trying to figure out with a friend where our school would be on the map. Turns out, it was over a vault. One where the vault dwellers were incredibly overworked (a bit of irony? Nah, probably just coincidence). But both franchises have a deep place in my heart.

Alright, enough of me talking about how I’ve wasted my life, and instead, let me talk about how I plan to waste my money! So, the Borderlands movie. Oh, the Borderlands movie. The movie appears to be doing some weird adaptation of both the first and second games (mostly the first, but we’ll touch on that later). Meanwhile, Fallout is being set in Hollywood, apparently making a new story set in the Fallout universe (They even referred to it as a non-playable Fallout 5). Now, these haven’t come out yet, but I feel confident in saying that of the two, Fallout will be the better one. In fact, I have heavy doubts about the quality of Borderlands.

Now, why do I not think Borderlands will be good? Thanks for asking! Well, as I mentioned before, they’re using a lot of the first game to write the plot. If you’ve played Borderlands 1, you know that, of all the games, it has the weakest plot. It’s not bad, just a bit boring. And they’ve decided to throw two characters from the second game, Tiny Tina and Krieg the Psycho, into this movie as characters. In return, we lose out on the Bird-Man Mordecai, and the third-best Character in the franchise (1 is Zane, 2 is Mr. Torgue, fight me nerds) Brick. Now already, I’m a bit hurt. You got rid of my boy for Krieg. I say that, and then remember I like Krieg. But, here’s the thing. I don’t think anyone is cast right. As in, they are all way older than I picture they should be in their first movie. These are vault hunters, people going up against dangerous outlaws, wildlife, and the occasional interdimensional monster (as one does). They should be young, both explaining their athletic prowess and giving you more room to grow this as a franchise. But I don’t think any of that will be an issue for fans. No, I think the problem will be that it sticks too close to the original story. Video games are, primarily, a user-driven experience. It allows us to play our own way, and make decisions however we want. Imagine if someone took that game you were playing, and said “Nope, you have to play it this way, and this way only”. That’s what a bad adaptation looks like.

Now, on the other side, you don’t want it to be completely baseless in its story. The Super Mario Movie (The one from the 80s) has a lot of faults, but one of them was that the writers and directors had never actually played Mario, and just did what they thought was cool. These franchises are important to people and clearly are liked for certain reasons.

This brings me to Fallout. Fallout is exactly what I hoped for when I saw the trailer. 50’s Americana mixed with post-apocalypse. But, they didn’t say “Hey remember Fallout 4, what if it was a movie?” No, instead, it seems that they’re creating their own little story in the Fallout universe, something that fleshes out and expands the concepts of said world. This means that we, as an audience, have no expectations of events, but we do have expectations of tone. The writers can make whatever they want to happen (Within Reason! No magic please. Save that for Elder Scrolls: The TikTok show) and as long as it fits that vibe, most fans will think it’s fine. Want proof? Look at Sonic 2. Both Tails and Knuckles were introduced, but neither required you to be a fan of the Sonic games to get. And, they took the speed and charm of Sonic and worked it into a movie that’s a unique story, while fitting the tone of the games.

While it’s easy to adapt a game beat for beat, it’s not what fans want. We want to see this world through a new lens, one we couldn’t get from the game while feeling like a game. Hopefully, I’m wrong about Borderlands, and it turns out to be great. I’m even more hopeful that Fallout is great too. But, what’s really important, what this whole thing has been building to is this: If they don’t shoot that 8-year-old girl in Sonic 3, I will be asking for a refund. Maria better gets executed. Shoot that bitch

So what do you think? Does my opinion stink? Will Borderlands and Fallout be good? Will they smoke that Maria pack? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. And until next time, “I don’t have a catchphrase yet”!

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