Easily Influenced

Something I recently learned is that I’m very easily influenced into buying, trying and watching new things. I would have a horrible time if I ever got sucked into that Scientology building on US 1 (or any Scientology building for that matter). Cults would love me and my easily moldable brain.

Anytime I listen to a podcast with a guest promoting their latest work (movies, tv, books) I come away thinking I gotta check that out. I bought John Cleese’s and Seth Rogen’s newest books after hearing them on Conan’s podcast (both books were great). I wanted to watch all of John Leguizamo’s latest movies and his one man show after he was on the ID10T podcast.

The strangest one was not too long ago when Justin Roiland (co-creator of Rick & Morty) was on the Kinda Funny podcast. He talked about being a fidgety person, but he never wanted a fidget spinner because those are stupid. He got into Rubik’s Cubes instead — and not the ones we all had as kids. Justin became obsessed with the GAN speed cubes. Those are the ones the little genius kids use in those Rubik’s Cube solving speed competitions.

I now have three different types of GAN speed Rubik’s Cubes in my Amazon cart. I don’t think I’ll end up buying any of them but they are there — waiting. I also spent some time learning some info about them and watching speed cube videos on YouTube. There’s even a Speed Cubers documentary on Netflix (it’s now on “My List”).

I attribute these problems of mine to being a generally curious person. Anytime I hear about a new documentary, movie, album, video game or pretty much any piece of entertainment I go to the internet to learn more. Whenever I’m watching anything and see or hear a familiar face or voice, I must go to IMDB.com to find out who this person is and what else they’re in.

Recently I wrote a post for my other blog/site (myVGBC.com) where the same sort of thing happens with me in movies and games anytime a new entry into an existing series is released. For instance, the new Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is coming out in less than a month, and that made me start to replay Ratchet & Clank (2016) once again, even though I first played it just last year.

Anytime a new Marvel movie is announced I have to watch the movies that came before (or at least the ones that deal with those characters). If it’s a new hero, then I’ll just watch a random Marvel movie to raise my hype levels.

Maybe I’m just like a little kid. Whenever my nephew sees a commercial for a toy, no matter how stupid it is. He says, “Nono, I want that.” And I just say, “Ok, do you have any money?” And by that time another commercial has finished and he says, “Nono, I want THAT.”

Croqueta Roulette

Something I never really thought about but I do almost anytime I go to Publix in the middle of the day when I haven’t had lunch yet and I’m too hungry to wait until I get home — I always buy some croquetas from the Publix bakery.

SIDE NOTE: For you gringos a croqueta is a fried breaded cylinder usually containing ham inside and some other stuff too. I’ve heard someone call it a fritter before. They can also be filled with chicken, fish, cheese, chorizo, mac & cheese and all sorts of crazy stuff. I would call it the Cuban cousin to the Italian Mozzarella stick.

I’ve always been a ham croqueta person. Ham is the original. If you order a croqueta anywhere you will 99% of the time be given a ham croqueta, no questions asked. If the establishment you are at has chicken, fish, cheese or other types of croquetas they will either ask you, “What type of croqueta?” or you will have to specify, “I want a croqueta de pollo.” (Spanish for chicken croqueta).

What I do at Publix bakery to make my mid-day snack into a fun game is I usually order a few original croquetas (aka HAM) and one of either chicken or cheese (sometimes one of each). They all get thrown into the same bag and since all croquetas look about the same from the outside, it’s a fun guessing game.

The Publix bakery person usually tries to separate them with some fancy bakery paper, but that doesn’t really work because they are getting tossed around all over the bag. Also, I’m going to eat these while driving so I will not look in the bag to see how they are separated.

So, once I leave Publix and I’m driving home or to my next destination I get to play a little game I call CROQUETA ROULETTE. I stick my hand in the bag and grab one at a time. Next, I take a bite not really thinking about what’s going to be inside and I’m surprised each time.

Here’s my croqueta bag from yesterday’s game.

Yesterday I ate the cheese one first. I had ordered three ham and one cheese, so the game ended on that first bite. It was still was and always is a delicious game to play.

So, the next time you find yourself at Publix (if you’re in Florida) order some croquetas (if you’re in South Florida), and play a round of CROQUETA ROULETTE (if you’re in the car). 

You won’t regret it. If you’re not in Florida, find some kind of dumpling place that will let you order single dumplings and try DUMPLING ROULETTE. Maybe a FILLED DONUT ROULETTE. There are many ways to play this game.

Addiction

tetris-2011-iphone-promo

FL title

This week I realized that I had an addiction to Tetris (on my iPhone). I’ve had Tetris on my iPhone for years, but it wasn’t until a few months ago that I had to play each and every day. The past few years I would play a few games every once in awhile and try to break a million points. You’d think once you finally break a million, you won’t need to play the game anymore. However, that wasn’t the case. Once I finally broke a million I quickly found out I needed to do it again.

It got to the point where anytime I had a free minute I would be playing Tetris. And that free minute would easily become 30 or more minutes. At work, watching TV, in my bed. These are all acceptable places to play iPhone games. It wasn’t until two nights ago when I was driving home from somewhere and thought, I’ve driven this road many times, I could totally play right now. I didn’t end up playing while driving, because I’m not an idiot, but just having the idea of playing Tetris while driving scared me. So, I played one last game in my bed that night before finally saying RIP to Tetris on my iPhone.

I still have Tetris on my iPad, plus the only game I have for my Pokémon Game Boy Color (which I stole from my friend’s little brother back in High School) is Tetris. This definitely isn’t the end of Tetris for me, but I will try to keep it off my iPhone for as long as I can (that can be a few months, days, I may even download it back on my phone later today).

This is how it goes with most iPhone games and me. I download a game, play it for a while until I get super addicted and then finally delete it because it’s ruining my life. Another game I had to delete was Crossy Road.

I once saw my nephew playing Crossy Road, so I decided I should download it and beat his high score. Crossy Road is just a boxy Frogger. I don’t know how these people got away with it, but they literally got frogger and drew boxes over everything, and now they have millions of dollar for it. The only difference between Crossy Road and Frogger is that you don’t have to be the one character every time. The more you play the more characters, icons and costumes you unlock.

I remember the day I got rid of Crossy Road, I was playing over and over and I kept dying with low scores. I finally died and looked up at the real world for the first time in what felt like hours, but was probably only a few minutes. When I looked up the world looked distorted and I thought, I have enough vision problems, so I instantly deleted Crossy Road.

Maybe I should have been an architect, because I love Tetris (it’s basically the same thing).

If you find yourself addicted to a game or app on your iPhone just delete it and see how much better your life will become. Ever since deleting Facebook and Facebook Messenger from my iPhone back in February I still haven’t re-downloaded them and my life is 100 times better for it.