Death by Energy Drink!

There’s a killer in your grocery store. It’s colorful, tempting, and refreshing. But if you let your guard down, it’ll strangle you with its sweet, sweet fists. It’s death by energy drink!

Lanna Hamann was an apparently healthy 16-year-old. In 2014, she went to Rocky Point, Mexico, with her friends. There, she tragically died of a heart attack. After a day of drinking energy drinks at the beach, Lanna complained that she was not feeling well. Shortly after, she went into cardiac arrest, and died. According to her friends, Lanna was not drinking any water. In a well-organized social media campaign launched after Lanna’s death, her friends and family blamed Red Bull as a contributing factor to her heart attack.

Every now and then, this and similar news stories will surface, most notably as click-bait (in Norwegian) in your Facebook feed. As a warning to young irresponsible people with no concept of actions and their possible consequences, they serve a purpose. But every time one of these “guy drinks 10 cans of caffeine and mysteriously croaks”-stories is published, the someone-think-of-the-children-mob appears with their torches and pitchforks.

Why isn’t there any click-bait articles being written about the deaths from alcohol consumption? According to the CDC, excessive alcohol use led to approximately 88,000 deaths each year in the United States from 2006 to 2010. If there’s something in your grocery store you should start a crusade against, then perhaps alcohol is a better choice than energy drinks?

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BEARD KING Beard Bib.

With the BEARD KING Beard Bib hair clippings catcher, you can focus on your beard, and stop worrying about the mess.

My Van Dyke has been with me for 21 years now. Ever since I did my stint of mandatory military service back in ’97 and ’98, it has tried it’s best to toughen up my cursed baby face. It hasn’t helped much, though, but at least I’m no longer mistaken for a girl1. The only time I’ve shaved off the beard was for a very brief month during Movember 2012.

Never again. Never. Again.

Another reason I got the beard, is that I think shaving is unbelievably boring. With the beard, it’s not strictly necessary to shave every day. Even though it takes a little time to get the right trim, it’s worth it since I only have to shave every week – or every second week if I really stretch it.

Shaving is still a dread, though, especially the cleanup afterwards. Those hairs get everywhere, and the bathroom, in particular the area around the sink, looks like a bombed-out whorehouse.

But I’m not the only one with a beard and a serious debris problem. There are probably a million hipsters in San Francisco trying to clean their sinks as you read this. And where there’s a problem, there’s always a solution. The great minds at BEARD KING have conjured a product that every man with facial hair should own: The Beard Bib.

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I’m a Coward.

What do you do when you have a lot to say, but don’t dare to say it?

Right now I have 32 unfinished blog posts laying around – including this one. 32 incomplete gems in the making, screaming for my attention. Some of them are properly aged, with the most ancient draft being a long post I wrote late 2011 about how I reverse engineered the Tidal Android app. Back then, it was called WiMP, and annoyingly it lacked proper head phone audio control support. But that wasn’t something a little hacking couldn’t fix, right? On my way through the code, I discovered clear text API passwords, and other funky stuff that probably shouldn’t be made public. So the post was never left the drawing board. There are also a bunch of incomplete reviews in the sea of unfinished posts, seasoned with drafts that aren’t much more than quick notes I’ve made whenever an idea has tried to form in my head.

In the collection of neglected treasure, there are also about 10 opinion pieces. They are written on a variety of topics, from my thoughts on a proposed ban on porn sites, to science fiction-esque gene manipulation with CRISPR. Among the many drafts, these opinion posts are the ones I’d like to spend some time and energy to finish.

But it doesn’t just take effort to voice ones opinions, defending them can be outright exhausting. Particularly if you’re like me – an conflict adverse, unskilled debater.

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May One-liners.

Here are the new one-liners for May:

  • I’d love to continue this conversation but I wasn’t listening.
  • Sometimes I wish my conscience was unconscious.
  • I wish I could visit longer, but I’ve got something trivial to do.
  • A group of owls is called a parliament, which is strange because owls are quite intelligent.
  • Twitter has taught me, if you have nothing important to say, say it anyway.
  • I can tell Spring is almost here because I’m on the verge of wanting to kill myself, but I’d also like to plant some bulbs.
  • Tomorrow is a big day for me at work. They are refilling the snack vending machine.
  • Gambling: The sure way to get nothing for something.
  • I’ll clean the house when the last kid has moved out.
  • If I ever go missing, before calling the police, please check between my bed and the wall.
  • Sometimes I tell people I’m an introvert just so they don’t expect me to talk to them again.
  • I’m Irish. You’re not really speaking my language until you start yelling.
  • Continental breakfasts should be served on tectonic plates.
  • I’d like to test the theory that money can’t buy you happiness.
  • My wife just threatened to kill me in my sleep, which seems much less horrifying than being killed wide awake. She’s always been thoughtful.
  • I can’t tell if the zombie apocalypse has started or the office coffee maker is broken.
  • I’m too antisocial to answer the door when opportunity knocks.
  • I bet raccoons look at garbage trucks the same way I look at taco trucks.
  • I’m at my most amazing when no one is paying attention.
  • We’re all strangers here, some are just stranger than others.
  • Being an open book isn’t helpful if you surround yourself with a bunch of illiterates.

Stellaris.

You might or might not have noticed that there hasn’t been a lot of activity on this site lately. The reason for that is Stellaris1.

Over the last couple of years, Paradox has become a highly respected brand in strategy gaming circles. The Swedish publisher/developer, operating as Paradox Interactive and Paradox Development Studio respectively, has published and developed some of the most popular strategy games and strategy franchises on the PC platform in recent years. Titles like Crusader Kings, Hearts of Iron, Europa Universalis, and Cities: Skylines will make most strategy gamers giggle of joy.

Paradox’ grand strategy games, in particular, have amassed a considerable amount of dedicated fans. Despite their steep learning curve, complicated mechanics, and non-intuitive user interface, Paradox’ grand strategy titles are among the finest in the genre. It was not a huge surprise then, that the strategy gaming community got very excited when Paradox announced their first science fiction title back in 2015: Stellaris.

There were some skeptics. Of course. There always are. Until Stellaris was announced, Paradox had dabbled exclusive in historically based strategy games. Would they be able to conquer space as well? One year after release, it’s time to see if Paradox’ first science fiction title has turned into everything it set out to become.

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