Hey Lady, Don’t Be A Dick

Hey lady at Blaze Pizza,

Yeah, you. I’m talking to you, the one holding the table for four during prime time dinner rush. I totally get that you saw the long line of people waiting to order their pizza and the restaurant seating was near capacity and that you wanted to hold the table for your family. So you did what we’ve all done at some point in our lives and called dibs on a table from a couple that was getting up. Hell, I’ve done that and sent my wife/friend/co-worker to stake a claim on some seating. But if you see me holding a pizza in each hand and three kids wrapped around my legs looking for a place to sit, why not do the right thing and let my family sit down since we’re ready to eat and your party has yet to order.

Thankfully the table in front of you witnessed the entire exchange and offered their table to us since they were just finishing up and also proceeded to try and clean the table quickly. So I wasn’t put out for too long. Those people, now I like those people. Those are my kind of people. You, though, not so much.

But I bet you felt a little bit bad for telling me you called dibs already on that table you sat down at ’cause you did finally offer your table to us as long as you get the next table the nice family offered to us. But not THAT bad though, right?  ‘Cause when my wife answers you with “It’s up to you” and you still don’t get up then why would you offer? Seriously? If you want to do the right thing, JUST OFFER THE GODDAMN TABLE. If you want to be nice, just be nice. Don’t be nice on a contingency.

I hope you enjoyed your pizza.

I’m Resetting My Pokémon X Game

FullSizeRenderAnd it’s significant because I completed every single objective in the game. Pardon the poor cellphone pic, but the 3DS won’t allow me to take a screen shot of the screen that shows how much time I put into the game: 383 hours and 18 minutes. I even got the Shiny Charm:

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You can only get the Shiny Charm once you register every single Pokémon. I even had a Living Pokédex but realized pretty late in the game that my living ‘dex was a sham.

The game has a trading system called Global Trading System or GTS for short, where people can look for specific Pokémon or put up their own Pokémon in hopes of getting something they want in return and make a trade with anyone else around the world. I spent a lot of time in the GTS to fill the holes in my National Pokedex. It was thrilling at first because of not only how easy it was but I was getting a lot of the harder-to-get legendary Pokémon for almost nothing. Zekrom for Dratini? A trade too good to be true. I became convinced that I was getting hacked Pokémon, and even if they were legitimate I wasn’t exactly catching it myself. It felt like I was cheating and at some point I lost sight of why I got into Pokémon in the first place.

It was because of this article on Nintendo Life that got me interested. Play just 4 games and you can catch them all? How intriguing <<cue maniacal chin rub and scheme-y squinty eyes>>. It sparked my curiosity enough for me to go buy a copy of X.

I had some friends that were into it as well, so I had a small support group if I needed help or nerd out and talk about the game. And it’s because of my friends that made the idea of erasing a tad over 383 hours worth of work an easy decision. When I realized that I had to erase my game and start from scratch, I had a really hard time actually going through with it. All that game time I spent would have amounted to nothing. All those Pokémon would just become vaporware and no longer exist in my bank. I talked to my friend Ken and told him about my dilemma and it dawned on me that I could offload some of them to him since he was a little less OCD than I was and his son definitely wouldn’t have cared where the Pokémon came from, hacked or not, legit or not. Starting from scratch and erasing all my Pokémon wasn’t such an emotional hurdle anymore. Most of my good ones were going to good home.

I already played through Pokémon Y using a speed run guide I found in the description of this YouTube video. I’m nowhere near getting the same time as the owner of the video, but the notes help a lot.  I’ve already played through the entire story so I just needed to get through the game as quickly as possible since I have to play through it three times to get one of each of the legendary birds:

Bird is the word.
Bird is the word. Articuno, Zapdos and Moltres.

You only get one bird per playthrough and it’s based on which starting Pokémon you pick. Since Y is done, I’m about to reset X and run through that one twice to get the other two birds. And after that, I’ll move onto Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. I am keeping two Pokemon from my first foray into the game, only because they were available as part of event and the download window is now closed. I’m staying off of the GTS this time, though, and only going there to get my foreign Ditto for breeding using the Masuda method because if I wasn’t crazy enough to try and build a National Pokédex a second time catching all the Pokémon myself, I now want to do it a third time and fill it with shinies.

God help me.

My Mind Is Blown

I guess there’s another Ace Kim out there, if this comment is to be believed. Until I see verifiable birth records, though, I’m calling shenanigans. And I’m having a mini freak out right now.

Sure, I’ve always accounted for the possibility that there could be another Ace out there, but another Ace with the same last name? Granted, Kim is a pretty ubiquitous last name in Korean culture, but what are the chances that someone’s else’s dad was flipping through a deck of cards in the waiting room while their child was being born? Slim I tell ya.

I only noticed that comment just now, dated October 14 of last year, ’cause I was prepping another post. I’ve neglected this blog so I’m trying to get back into the swing of things and when I logged on to write, lo and behold there was this comment.

I go to New York once a year for Toy Fair so I may have to make first contact and meet up with this until-I’m-proven-wrong imposter. Because it’ll either be like two kindred spirits meeting or meeting your own doppelganger. And I’m hoping it’s not the latter.

Yep, still freaking out a little.

I Have Not Been Having A Good Week With Electronics

It started with my New Nintendo 3DS.  After a few late night sessions playing Super Smash Bros., the plastic wrap on the bottom shell started to peel off. Of course, because of my lack of foresight I don’t have any photographs of this happening. What’s interesting is that the bottom shell (and I suspect part of the top shell) of the 3DS is just a silver shell and there is a semi-transparent sticker that lays on top of it, either translucent black or translucent red, depending on the color system you have. It’s probably done this way to cut down on production costs. Anyways, it isn’t really a problem because that’s what warranties are for. After a quick phone call, I sent the system back to Nintendo for repair.

I sent my 3DS in on Monday and I got it back from the repair service yesterday and tested it out. Rather than just replacing the bottom shell, they replaced the entire bottom half of the unit. Yay? Everything seems stiffer now though for better or for worse: the hinge, the buttons have a bit more of a resistance to being pressed, and especially the Circle Pad. It is way stiffer and it’s seriously affecting my gameplay. Not such a big deal when it comes to games like Pokémon or Fire Emblem, but Super Smash Bros. is a different beast. I can’t remember if my 3DS felt this stiff out of the box. Maybe after a few weeks or months of play time I’ll either get used to the stiffer controls or beat up the unit enough to get it back to the same condition as my first unit but right now I can’t control my character’s actions all that well. It’s like I’m playing Smash for the first time again.

While my 3DS was at Nintendo getting repaired, the touch screen on my iPhone died no more than 4 days after my warranty expired. Completely dead. Couldn’t do anything. But Applecare came through in a BIG way and offered an Express Replacement service and even waived the $29 fee. I had no idea what Express Replacement was before I called them but basically what normally happens when you get a repair over the phone is that they send you a box with a pre-paid label. You put your phone or laptop or whatever inside that box and ship it back. They repair it or replace it, and then ship it back to you. That whole process could take anywhere from 4-7 days depending on transit and repair time. With Express Replacement, Applecare will send you a replacement product in advance on the condition that you mail them the broken item back within 10 business days. You use the same box, peel off the label and drop it off with the carrier. The downtime for that is 2-3 days at most. Who wouldn’t want this service? My phone is currently on the truck for delivery and I won’t be able to get to it ’til I get home later tonight.

So for two days now I’ll have been without my iPhone. Here are some things I learned about myself in those 48 hours:

  • My number two’s now only take 2-3 minutes.
  • I get work done faster.
  • I get bored much more easily.
  • I panic whenever I leave a place wondering what the hell happened to my phone. Oh yeah, it’s broken sitting on my desk at home.
  • I keep reaching inside my pocket for my phone that isnt’t there whenever I’m waiting for something like the elevator, the Keurig machine, or web pages to load. Like ALL the freakin’ time.

It’s a weird feeling being unreachable. I was away from email, texts, Words With Friends, podcasts, internet, Google Maps, and everything else I use on my phone. And I could probably wax on about how not having a phone “opened up my eyes to the world outside” and paint a picture about how birds would land on my shoulder and I would feed grapes to a deer in the park or how blue the sky is and how green the grass is but that’s all bullshit. Being unplugged and unreachable sucks. No contact with friends, being forced to listen to the goddamn radio and its millions of commercials, not having any idea that traffic on Hawthorne was backed up for miles, all just a joy ride from hell. Not having my phone sucks ass and I can’t wait to get my replacement going again. Fuck this shit.

Sorry, no pictures for this post. I’m feeling particularly lazy right now.

What’s In A Name…

Now that I have a blog, I suppose I have to start talking about myself. So here goes…

What’s in a name? Everything.

I was blessed growing up with the name of Ace. It makes people smile when they hear it for the first time. And when they hear it, more often that not they ask if it’s my real name. I can’t remember an age where I wasn’t asked that question. Elementary school, middle school, high school, even now as an adult.  And it would usually be followed up with whether or not it was on my driver’s license. Why yes, yes it is.

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My dad named me Ace and one day I finally got around to asking him why he chose that name. He said when they were at the hospital waiting for me to be born, he was in the waiting room, flipping through a deck of cards and he thought Ace sounded like a good name. He didn’t speak English very well at the time, or at all, so I’m glad he went with that and not something like King or Queen or a numerical name like Four. Jack would have been okay since it’s, you know, a normal name. But picking a name from a deck of cards can really run the gamut from the unfortunate to the auspicious and I just happened to be graced with luck that day.

Fast forward decades later and a little thing called The Internet would come along and with it, a chance to establish some usernames and login ids. My first attempt at using my name as a login was trying to get an email address while a freshman at UCLA: ace@ucla.edu. Except, the thing is, with a common dictionary name like Ace every jerkoff who thinks it’s cool to go by their high school nickname decides to try and use Ace as their id. Yeah, a nickname? Not the same thing, you poser. I’m sorry you have identity issues and hate your name, Robert, but you’re just making it hard for us legitimately named folks in getting the id we should be entitled to. But whatever, two can play at that game and so I used the same tactic to get my nickname as my UCLA email: aceman@ucla.edu. But can it really be called a nickname if no one calls you by it?

tide_ace

I’m not big into facebook, but at some point they started allowing vanity urls. Apparently, I was too slow in claiming facebook.com/acekim cause some dude named Andrew got it instead because I can only assume it was his nickname in high school. Thanks a lot, Andrew. Do you know a guy named Robert? And forget about facebook.com/ace since it seems to be taken by a Tide knockoff long before I even got onto facebook. Oh well. I knew it was a long shot anyway because I accepted the reality long before facebook vanity urls were a thing that, because Ace is a popular name, nickname or real, I’d be up against anyone or anything that identified with it enough to want to adopt it for their online presence. Ace.com? Fuggedaboudit. I was far too naive about the internet to realize I should have registered that the day registrations opened.

But you know what, I got the last laugh. I am still incredulous that .kim is a tld and that I have ace.kim as my domain name. I never thought it was going to happen because other common names like david.kim or andrew.kim for example are reserved and unavailable for registration. I got the same error message when trying to reserve ace.kim but would keep trying every once in a while for shits and giggles. Then one day, poof! It finally went through. And who’s got the last laugh now huh, Robert? Andrew? Not many people can register their full name as a domain name. I just happened to be graced with luck that day.

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