Thursday, June 25, 2009

Social Theory, and Beating People with Sticks

No, the two topics are not related.

I have two kind of random things to talk about tonight. Firstly, while discussing this healthcare business with my family, I became very frustrated. Things were especially weird toward the beginning of President Obama's televised discussion group thingy that was on ABC around 10 o'clock. The way we discussed it during the first commercial break, it felt like my mom and I were talking about two different pieces of video.

I realized this kind of thing happens a lot, so I thought, hey, could there be something to this? Or is my mom just as dumb as a post? I'd like to think she's not, so to explore this business, I started a little theoretical research project for myself (and Hubpages, since I haven't posted there in a while), regarding the subjectivity of reality:

Is reality subjective?

If anyone has an opinion, or better yet some evidence or personal experience to help me with this project, please let me know. You can post a comment here, answer at Hubpages, message me on Facebook, or email me. To anyone interested in helping out, thanks in advance.

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Okay, second: I was thinking, our generation really needs a new sport. I'm not really a sports guy, per-se. I've played some golf, and I was a madman at bowling in high school, but I don't really have a sport to love and call my own. So, I thought, what kinds of things do I like to do that don't involve physical activity, but could? Well, how about pwning the crap out of some noobs?

That's when I got this idea. People like to play fantasy fighting games on videogame consoles and the Internet, but the experience is still kind of artificial. To really get the blood flowing, why not make a real-world equivalent? I'd be kind of like LARPing, but without all the nerdy crap.

The original inspiration for this came a long time ago. A friend of mine from high-school once invited me to join this game of capture the flag with him and his friends. What made this game cool was that we all were equipped with wooden swords and hockey sticks and the like. When encountering members of the opposite team, an exciting battle took place. The first to get hit lost the fray; if you were on opposing turf, you had to go back to your home base to "respawn," and losers on their own turf would have to kneel for 20 seconds before rejoining the game. Good fun and excitement to be had, but no serious danger involved. Okay, I did kind of get my kidney crushed when one guy did this epic leap over me to escape certain doom, but otherwise it was a lot of fun.

So, deriving from what made that game awesome, here's my idea: a new sport of fantasy fighting with artificial weapons. Everyone plays quick and fierce like a real fight, but no one gets seriously injured. Although I'd plan many different kinds of matches, the main event would be simple one-on-one fights. Players score points by getting a successful hit on their opponent. Then, of course, we'd have variants of that; ie, first to 5 points wins, most points in 60 seconds wins, etc.

I figure we could take it further than that, too. We could divide it up into beginner, intermediate and expert ranks (with cooler names than that, of course. The expert rank would probably be called Elite or Master or something). For beginners, all weapons would be light plastic or foam, and points would only be awarded for hits on the torso or arms (to make things less vicious), and you couldn't hit someone while they're down like in boxing. For the experts, wooden weapons would be allowed, and all manner of crazy tactics like leg sweeps and down attacks would be permitted. Groin shots? Not encouraged, but they'll still count, so if you want to join the expert ranks, wear a cup. And of course the intermediate rank(s) would fall somewhere in between kiddie-time and anything-goes.

Those are just some of the preliminary notes. I'm thinking that once I've got a working plan, I'll set up a fun tournament or something and host it at Indian Meadows Park down the way from my house. That way the BHBL alumni can come have some fun on summer break. If that's successful (and even if it's not really) I'll bring the concept to SUNYIT in the fall. I don't know exactly how much interest there is for this, but I'm better if I provide some of my own weaponry, people will show up. Come on, it's an excuse to hit people with sticks!

Again, if this business tickles your fancy, please drop me an email, message me on Facebook or comment here. I'll get back to you, we can discuss particulars, and maybe set up some kind of event to try it out.

That's about it for now. Stay cool, readers.


  1. I'm glad to see that someone else has thought about the subjective nature of reality. Really, it's not completely subjective, but it's close enough.

    Suppose that an apartment explodes due to a gas leak. There are 300 witnesses. Each of these three-hundred gives their account of what happened and, slowly, a sort of "compound subjective reality" forms. In essence, what we understand to be reality is nothing more than the consensus of all of mankind.

    Now, suppose that witness number three-hundred says that it wasn't a gas leak that caused the explosion, but something else, say...a dragon or somesuch. To that one witness, it WAS a dragon that caused the explosion. But his reality is outweighed by the weight of the other 299's reality. Thus, it wasn't a dragon, but a gas leak. In time, that last witness may come to disbeleive his own reality.

    Thus, if you want to rule the world, the best thing to do is convince the majority of people on Earth that you already conquered it. Then, if they beleive this as fact, it is fact. Thusly, one could accurately say that all power is built upon this illusion.

  2. You make some very interesting points here. First off, I believe viewed reality is very subjective. Different people put different emphasis on what they are viewing, due to their own beliefs, trains of thought, imaginations, and knowledge base. And, well, differing levels of sanity. You take 10 different people who see something, while most will have some common ground in obvious observation, they will see on a whole 10 different things.

    As to your new sport idea... goddamn it, I like it! I vote we start up a league right now. Me and my friends use to do this kind of stuff, but never on a large scale. It'd be kind of like American Gladiators, only in your backyard. Maybe include some basic protection, too, like regular sports pads, to protect against trampling, accidents, and lawsuits. Oh, and waivers. Make everyone sign waivers.

  3. Scorpio4:42 PM

    Dunno if this counts, but when I'm doing delicate work I get a weird feeling that I've done the exact same moment again and know the outcome. Kinda like saving before a boss fight and loading up if you lose.

    Man, if humans could master that in real life that would be handy. Or we'd just abuse it by jumping buildings like prince of persia and rewinding

  4. Re: Scorp: You're talking about deja-vu, right? Yeah, I get that a lot, too. Supposedly this is usually just the result of having too much familiarity/scheduling in your life. Things seem like they're repeating because in a way you are.

    It's not directly related to the subjective reality thing, but I think there could be some parallels. It's worth looking into, anyway.