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Great question. If I only had one video I could play it would be this.

Oh crap sorry! Extra Credits! Along with Heathcliff, I dedicate this story to the following people, in no particular order:

Ada Lovelace

Kurt Vonnegut

Bill Gates

Steve Jobs

Grace Hopper

Ray Kurzweil

Gabe Newell

Barack Obama

Michelle Obama

The Fam

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Issue : Games : Incurious

A little while ago the fam and I got together to watch WrestleMania 29. It took place in Metlife Stadium which is loacted in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Attendance for the event was 80, 676 give or take, which is a record breaking number. It aired live on Pay-Per-View. About five or so of us packed shoulder to shoulder at our buddies house. Snacks on deck, reminiscing on old marquee matches and rivalries of the past. Favorite wrestlers, favorite entrances, favorite eras. That sort of thing.

Also, grown men still get together to watch wrestling. We should be caught up now.

The show is second to the build up. If you were to watch the event itself you would recognize that the Rock was facing John Cena, and that would probably be enough of a drift to carry you through the programming. But had you been watching Smackdown, or Raw, or saw the Royal Rumble, then you would know that the road to the main event is a winding path, and those names could have been completely different had the story  been told different, but there they are.

The buildup is the show. And if you watch closely, you can see the so called surprises coming from a mile away. The buildup to WrestleMania is based on a formula. You have your heroes and heels, you have your tricksters, jobbers, and workhorses, you have your allegiances and splits. At their peak all these elements work in tandem to create an event. The event can only be as quality as the disparate elements of the buildup allow, and they are all working toward the same place.

It's a dance, it's choreographed. Once you realize this, you begin to appreciate the quality of the dancers as well as the song. It's also a lot like a video game. There is progression, there is emergence, there are tiers, there are levels, there are stages, there are props, there are actors. And if any of these function incorrectly, there will be bugs.

After the event ended we were all in agreement that WrestleMania was an overall underwhelming event. There was nothing that happened that we did not see coming, Every shot was called, every prediction came true. These projected to lose, lost. Those projected to win, won. All in real time, as if the script was completed months ago, and played out like a eulogy for the suspension of disbelief.

The new Hollywood ending is for things to end up exactly how you imagine they will. And to be honest, the unimaginative build up to the event didn't earn a single surprise, good or bad. They had the perfect opportunity to make something special, a group of the best athletes to come around in a few generations, and more time than most receive to do it right. They shit the bed.

I don't blame the Rock, I don't blame CM Punk, I don't blame John Cena, Del Rio, Big Show, Jack Swagger, Jericho, Mark Henry, Kane, Orton, Zeb, or Dolph. They love and break themselves for this life. They are the game's lifeblood, they are the ethic I chase. And to be honest I don't even blame Vince McMahon. He has done more for wrestling, good and bad, than most will ever truly appreciate.

But when you get to a certain level you loose the ability to see the whole field, and begin to trust in the formula even when you feel it failing. That is why the bridges between top floor and bottom floor are so vital. People forget that.

I do blame middle management. Those day laborers in between, the stripe-less entitled, those with no past or pleasure in the sport. Those whose degree's grant no question asked entry into decision making rooms where they steer toward committee consensus bereft of internal navigation calibrated by integrity. They only know how to move the pieces on the chessboard. They don't know why something would move there, or what the cost of that move would be. Or maybe they do, and just don't care.

I guess I'm bringing this up because I haven't watched a wrestling match since WrestleMania 29, and neither has the fam it seems. The event stole something from us. I couldn't tell you what that something is, but I am sure it is important. Don't get me wrong, my eyes will be back on the mat sooner or later, as will the rest of the guys. Being hurt by something you truly love can only bend you, not break you.

At the end of the day it was just another thing that happened in a lifetime filled to the brim with things that happened. I don't regret being there to see the events unfold one bit. There will be more buildups full of dat pomp and/or circumstance, more marquee players, more choices made. I will be front row center, hella hyped for the next storyline that grabs me, that's for sure.

I hope information stops taking baby shits all over the apartment. They are becoming impervious to Febreze. Also SpeakingOfGames is late so no This Week in Gaming for now (a bunch of late muthafuckas this week, CP time.) Also, JERBZ.

The Protoculture Mixtape v.161 Issue : People : Vestigal

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