Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Exmortis 3: Full Walkthrough & Screen Shots

Update: January 8, 2010 - I now have all 34 Exmortis 3 achievements and a new set of videos for the walkthrough. These new videos take advantage of the fact that I now have access to a faster computer and, because of this, was able to make a walkthrough in half the time.

Also, because of this, I decided to re-write the walkthrough to include all of the updates I made to this one. This one was somewhat outdated now, in some areas, so please click HERE for the newest version.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Excuse Me! My Eyes Are Up HERE!

Hello again, my lovelies. I'm in a goofy mood so I thought I'd tackle a subject that can be both fun and frustrating; staring, gawking, ogling, etc. Whatever the term you use, you know what I'm talking about. I very well may regret ever writing this but what the hell. Ya only live once.

Now, I pride myself in being somewhat of an atypical male. Not angelic, just atypical. For the sake of this post, by typical, I would assume women refer to a guy as "a typical guy" for some or all (and maybe more) of the following attributes: Stares at your chest, only talks about sex, acts like he only wants sex, hoots and hollers obscene remarks from a distance, wolf whistles, etc. I've always been kind of proud of myself for not being any of these things. Well, I do my fair share of thinking about sex, but I digress. Incidentally and totally off-topic, I once read somewhere that women have approximately a week during the month where they're super horny. The article then said, "Imagine, if you will, that this week lasted four weeks. Then you'd have more of an understanding of guys."

My initial idea for this blog post was after seeing a guy do a double-take of a girl. It was on TV and was in a club setting, for the record. It got me to thinking. My thinking was more about the 20's-30's women out there. I do know that women of all ages put up with this, but the 20 and 30-somethings do more clubbing and "girls' night out."

When I'm out anywhere with a lot of people around, if I see a gorgeous woman, I do my best to look for as long and as hard as I can get away with, but without being obvious or busted doing so. I love women. I adore women. Women do it too. Don't sit there all smug. They sometimes look at women as well, but I was referring to checking out the guys. "Wrangler butts drive me nuts" was not a phrase first uttered by a man, I dare assume...and it caught on.

Those of you that were blessed (or cursed) with ample bosoms will relate more to all of this than others of you, but all should understand. Anyone who knows me for any length of time will tell you that I am, through and through, an ass man. Oh geez! I could go on and on about that but I won't. A lot of men are boob men and a lot of women get fed up with guys staring at their boobs while talking to them. I tried to think of how I may be able to explain to women why some guys do this. I don't stare at cleavage while talking to you. I do my best to be semi-respectful, but as soon as your head turns, I am so there looking. I am, however, a man and can explain a little about the reasons guys look in the first place.

Most of you ladies out there with breasts likely own a low-cut blouse, a v-neck sweater, something form-fitting or a thing or two of that nature. Unless you're wearing a box, someone, somewhere is gonna look. I've personally seen women checking out other women's boobs and thinking they were being subtle too. Now, assuming this shirt/blouse/top (whatever the hell women call their upper-half attire these days) has any kind of low collar or button-up design, chances are you have cleavage showing to some degree. Some more than others. Some much more than others.

Imagine you're at a public swimming pool and you see a gorgeous guy. He's toned, he's God's gift in your opinion. Not bare, but not hairy. Just the right amount of body hair. This guy just got out of the pool and the weight of his now water-soaked shorts have pulled them down a tad. Walking away from you, you notice the top of his butt crack is showing. If he's "your type" you know you're lookin'. Now, we're getting more to the meat of this post. (Intentional pun...my apologies) Imagine he's walking toward you now, but isn't looking at you. His still-drooping shorts have fallen in the front as well. So far that you can see his happy trail. (For those unfamiliar with this term, it refers to the body hair on a male that starts at his navel and heads downward) His shorts are very, very water-logged and are clinging to everything. You can see the outline of everything and nothing is left to the imagination. Remember, this guy is your definition of perfect and we'll assume you're either wearing dark sunglasses, are semi-hidden or can look right at him (or it) without being noticed. Chances are, you're gonna look. I've talked to many, many women over the years. Women from all walks of life, of all ages and of varying degrees of sexuality. I've also read more than my fair share of articles to, for and by women and have heard a great amount of "girl talk".

Let's go back to women now, but keep that last image in your mind. (Sorry for the guys who are reading. Ya think this is easy for me either?) Now, imagine that guy's less-than-secret view is now one foot or less under his chin. Following me here? If that guy were carrying around a shelf on his chest with his sizable winky presented to you like a freshly-prepared fish, you'd probably look. (Yes. I said winky. I didn't wanna try too hard on humor or get too clinical). This is what guys face. There's basically a line, showing where two breasts meet, right there. Sometimes enough to be able to imagine the covered parts. There, as if presented for viewing, are a pair of soft, heavenly, squishy, s-s-supple, lovable, kissab.......um....okay.....ya get the point. If men were built different and their bulges rested much higher, you dang women folk would be looking too. Some of you do with the current setup. More of you than will likely ever admit.

Now, let's move to the beach. Where do I start. Women running around everywhere in what is basically frickin' skin-tight designer underwear. Why on EARTH would guys look? Throw in a thong or three? Oh.....My.......GOD will I ever stare! All my atypical claims go right out the window at that point. *sigh*

I probably just said what many of you already knew but, assuming it's never been put to you like I just did it, there ya have it. We're human. Some less than others, but all human nonetheless.

Until next time, my friends...

I have implemented a new commenting system. Sadly, in doing so, I inadvertently lost all comments made prior to December 28, 2011. My deepest apologies to those this adversely affected. If it's any consolation, it makes my blog here look pretty darn unvisited over the years.
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Monday, August 24, 2009

Atheist Scum: American Society's True Colors

The Following Post Contains The Thoughts and Opinions of Myself and Is, In No Way, Meant To Offend Anyone or Discriminate Against Anyone Based Upon Religion, Race, Creed or Nationality. I Have Done My Best To Avoid Making Any Statements Which May Lead To This. That Being Said, This Is A Touchy Subject and That, In Itself, May Offend Some. I Have Gone To Great Lengths To Keep This Blog In Line With Blogger's Terms of Service and Conduct. You Continue To Read At Your Own Risk.

This post may seem to rattle on and on (they may all seem that way) but I just want people to know what lead me into this lifestyle. I'm very sharing of who I am and what makes me who I am today and, because of that, I can ramble on and on for hours.

Did you know that in a 2006 nationwide poll by the University of Minnesota, researchers found that despite an increasing acceptance of religious diversity, atheists were generally distrusted by other Americans, who rated them below Muslims, recent immigrants, gays and lesbians and other minority groups in "sharing their vision of American society"? Atheists are also the minority group most Americans are least willing to allow their children to marry. Penny Edgell, the lead researcher in this study and an associate sociology professor, said, “Our findings seem to rest on a view of atheists as self-interested individuals who are not concerned with the common good.”

Back up a few years to another study and you'll see that from 1990 to 2008, the number of atheists (and/or those claiming no religion, agnostic, humanist, etc) jumped from 8% in 1990 to between 15 and 16.1% in 2008. Yet another study done by The Barna Group, found that "they tend to be more educated, more affluent and more likely to be male and unmarried than those with active faith" and 1 in 4 adults between the ages of 18 and 22 describe themselves as having no faith. One in every four!

Okay, enough about studies now. When I was growing up (some would argue this has yet to occur) my parents didn't run a religious household. Neither did they run an anti-religious household. They left it up to us (four kids) to find, follow and research religion and God ourselves. Out of the four of us, none have ever been to jail or have ever committed a crime, none have drug problems, none are alcoholics and all are generally considered to be pretty good people. We all found God in our own time and in our own way.

I was around 14 or so when I first paid attention to any talk about God as far as following religion, from a friend. I had, for as long as I could remember, believed in God, but believing and following the teachings of any religion had never even entered into my mind. I began to attend church. I still remember the name of it: Windsor Park Baptist Church in Austin, Texas. I met some great people there and felt good about myself.

It was through that church that I was baptized and, eventually, "saved". Admittedly, when I was saved, I was asking the youth minister about what exactly "being saved" meant. He explained it to me and basically talked me into doing it right then. So, I followed what he said, word for word, and was then saved. A few months later, the youth group was invited to a church camp with many other church groups from around the state (Texas) attending. I remember meeting a girl there. Her name was Cindy and she was all I thought about the whole time I was at that camp. The services and other assorted activities were merely background. Cindy was so pretty and I remember I was sitting next to her in an auditorium a few days later when a sort of "call to be saved" session started happening. I have no idea why, but I started bawling. It was then that I realized I hadn't really been saved before and was about to again...for the final time. I attribute the tears to the overwhelming feeling of doing something good and so powerful for myself.

Another thing I remember about ol' Cindy was a discussion we had after camp was over, via snail mail. The Internet wasn't around yet. I had told her a band I was very into at the time and loved everything they put out. That band was Ratt. I even included a photo of the band from their fan club mailer. A week or so later I received her reply and was surprised to read her basically "going off" on me for daring to send a photo of a group of "Satan-worshippers". That was the last time I heard from Cindy and it was then that I realized the power religion and/or belief in God has over some people.

That was my first taste of judgment by a religious person. In the many years since, I've seen much, much more. Now, let me make clear that the religious are not the only judgmental people I've met, but in my experience, they have been the most harshly judgmental. I understand that all groups (religious, atheists, etc) have extremists and take their devotion, or lack thereof, to levels that shock even their own kind, but it has been the religious, Christian primarily, that I've seen be the most cruel to one another. Not all Christians, just a lot of them. I have witnessed in my 12 or so years on the Internet, many Christians berating each other for not being "True Christians". It seems to be a competition with some of them. That being said, I've also seen atheists claim that others weren't a "real" atheist.

Other things that put a bad taste in my mouth about religion were a "friend" and an admissions counselor.

The "friend" that attributed to my growing disdain for religion was a guy who used his religion, spirituality and knowledge of the Bible as a weapon. A weapon that thrust forward the automatic assumption that he should be trusted and that he was a great person, through and through. This man turned out to be a compulsive liar and thought the Earth revolved around him. He could lie as easily as state his name.

The Admissions Counselor was a guy, I believe his name was Robert, for the University of Phoenix Online. I, being on disability for severe anxiety and some other issues, got interested in designing, creating and maintaining web pages. I had an average-to-above-average knowledge of HTML. However, I soon realized that web sites were being created, in whole or in part, in other programming languages such as CGI Scripting, PHP, etc. I was being left in the dust as far as methods and being competitive in the web design field. Well, I shared this with the admissions counselor and my desire to become more up to date with my methods and to learn these programming languages. He, almost immediately, had just the course schedule for me. As we spoke and he did his thing, he went on and on about how spiritual and religious he was. Going so far as to say he was going to be becoming an ordained minister soon, he made sure to include some reference to God, religion, etc in every comment and answer thereafter. He was clearly using it as a method to gain my trust...or, at the very least, strengthen it.

Long story short...well, not so short, is it? Is anything I post ever short? I was so proud of myself. I had taken a step forward in trying to better myself and spitting in the face of my anxiety disorder that limited me so. I was kickin' butt and taking names in the courses. They had little...well, no....they had nothing to do with programming languages or anything of the sort, but I figured, "Meh. So these are the throw-away crap courses ya gotta take to get to the real one". It got to the third course before I started struggling and, again, realized, "This stuff has zero, zilch, nada to do with anything even remotely programming languages!" I started asking my fellow classmates what their goals and future plans were and all of them...every last one of them, said they were doing Business Administration. My jaw dropped and I was devastated.

I sunk in my chair and just sat there stunned. It had become blindingly clear that I had been flat-out LIED to just to "earn my business." Sadly and very reluctantly, I dropped out. During the "exit interview" I mentioned to the guy (completely different guy) how disappointed in myself I was but also that I felt I had been deceived merely to get me to sign up. He sounded truly sympathetic, not just like it was his job to hear me out. I casually mentioned the admissions counselor's name and the guy's response floored me. "Yeah. You're the third person today that's leaving because of being put in the wrong courses and all of you were admitted by 'Robert'," he said. My disappointment turned, at least partially, into anger. It was eventually forgotten. Forgotten until sometime in 2006 when a federal student loan for my attendance with this online excuse for a college was now being garnished from my Social Security Disability check showed up in my bank account and was $50 short. After looking and looking for any reasons for this, I finally called the Social Security Administration to find out what was going on. It turns out I had received some $1500 student loan from the government for use at the University of Phoenix Online and it was payback time. Since then, they've taken my two economic stimulus checks and the last cost of living allowance increase given to those on Social Security. I never saw a dime of them and they're now garnishing my disability check for $96 a month for something I would have been fully willing to pay for if I hadn't been lied to.

It was in 2006 that I opened the door that I had, for my entire life, kept sealed shut and didn't dare even approach; the door to doubt. Let me interrupt myself here to explain that I truly believe most who aren't raised atheist but turn that way, probably do so not through negative happenings but through those happenings allowing the seed to be planted. The "door" being given a second look. It's the negative happenings, for me, that made me feel just a little less guilty for even considering doubts. They are not why I reached the decision that I did.

I, quite literally, took time and just sat there and thought. I analyzed everything about me and everything about my beliefs. I guess you could say I was having a heart-to-heart with myself. (Let me remind you that these are/were my thoughts to myself and are not meant to mock or offend others) I came to the realization that this whole "God thing" was a load of crap. Thoughts like, "Worship my father and live by his word or burn for eternity" and "...but you have free will," etc were running rampant throughout my head. Yes, I realize this is a major, major over-generalization and both leaves a lot out and says my thoughts pretty harshly, but they were my thoughts. For over a year I struggled with my changing/changed beliefs and remained in the atheist "closet" the entire time.

I began to think of how I would "defend myself" to believers - young and old and how, if the opportunity presented itself, I would debate or explain. I began to think of questions that many, many people ask:

  • Why do churches full of people worshipping God, get struck by lightning and burn to the ground, killing all inside?
  • Why did all those people have to die on 9/11?
  • Why do babies die?
  • Why do good people die suffering deaths?
  • Why are there people out there starving and their crops dying?
  • Why are there over 150 religions with over 100 million followers if only one can be right?
  • Why are there over 133,000 different variations of Christianity alone?
I could go on forever, but these are some of the things and types of thoughts that go through a doubter's mind. I imagine it goes through a lot of believers' minds as well. Please, with all due respect, don't try and answer these questions. I've heard it all. I honestly believe many, many Christians are what one fellow I saw in a video refer to as "seat belt Christians"...those who believe "just in case". Just in case there is a God. You've seen them, know them and a lot of you are them. You rarely, if ever, attend church. You've never even flipped through a Bible. You drink, cuss, lust and overindulge. You're also sometimes referred to as Agnostic. Yeah. You. You're exactly what I called myself from the age of 14 to 37-38. As a matter of fact, when researching lists of atheists, you'll often find agnostics right there with them.

I used to be the first to say, "Don't curse God for the things you don't have until you've thanked Him for what you do have". I have always, always "done unto others as I'd have them do unto me". Long before I knew what God and religion were. I don't have all of the Ten Commandments committed to memory, as I'd bet many of you don't. I thought I did until I quizzed myself. (I always choke under pressure) The bottom line is, religion and the belief in a higher being and consequences after death for things done in life, can lead people to do very, very beautiful, meaningful and fulfilling things. It does not, however, mean only believers do good and meaningful things. We're not the devil and outcasts society has made us to be.

Ironically enough, being saved or finding God is sometimes referred to as "seeing the light". Many atheists feel like that's what they now have done. Just a different light. I hope this has shed at least some light on the issue of atheism and atheists for you. We're just like you. We just choose a different belief system....or lack thereof. Good does not necessarily have to mean God.

I'll leave you with a partial list of famous or celebrity atheists: It's long but many names may surprise you.
  • Andy Rooney (60 Minutes)
  • Angelina Jolie
  • Barry Manilow
  • Woody Allen
  • Lance Armstrong
  • Isaac Asimov (Science fiction writer)
  • Warren Buffett (investor, businessman and philanthropist)
  • Rodney Dangerfield
  • Jodie Foster
  • Bill Gates (founder of Microsoft)
  • Gene Roddenberry (creator of Star Trek)
  • Katherine Hepburn
  • Jamie Hyneman (Mythbusters)
  • Penn & Teller (both of them)
  • Billy Joel
  • Bruce Lee
  • Jack Nicholson
  • Eddie Izzard (comedian)
  • Keanu Reeves
  • Steve Wozniak (co-founder of Apple Computer)
  • Frank Zappa
  • Phil Donahue (former talk show host)
  • Ray Romano (comedian)
  • Albert Einstein
  • Ernest Hemingway (author)
  • Napoleon (French Emperor)
  • Mark Twain (author and humorist)
  • Alfred Hitchcock (filmmaker and producer)
  • Charlie Chaplin
  • David Bowie (British musician)
  • Many many Nobel Prize winners
Until next time...

I have implemented a new commenting system. Sadly, in doing so, I inadvertently lost all comments made prior to December 28, 2011. My deepest apologies to those this adversely affected. If it's any consolation, it makes my blog here look pretty darn unvisited over the years.
If this article is still online, I'll still reply to any and all comments that warrant it. Never feel like an article you view here is too old to bother with. Comments are always welcomed!
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    Wednesday, August 19, 2009

    Suicide: The End of the Line

    This is never an easy subject to talk about, but I have some opinions that I'm gonna make known. Many of you likely know someone or know of someone who has chosen to take their own life. Many see it as a poor soul no longer able to cope and ending the hurt. The rest of you see it as the final selfish act of an individual who thought of no one but themselves. It is to the latter of you that I make this post.

    Back in high school, I remember hearing of a fellow student that had killed himself and heard a teacher say to some students who were discussing it with him, "That is the single most selfish thing he could have done!". It was then that I realized that my views differ from some...maybe even a majority. It took everything I had in me not to light into this teacher with both proverbial barrels. It's my belief that anyone who says something like that, upon learning someone took their own life, has never been through the hell it takes to even consider it. I have.

    It should be noted that, according to The World Health Organization, over one million people commit suicide each year. It's one of the leading causes of death for teenagers and adults under the age of 35. There is still 10 to 20 million attempts that do not produce a fatal result every year. I found it interesting that in the Western world, males die much more often by means of suicide than do females, although females attempt suicide more often.

    Granted, some deal with crisis better than others. I'll be the first to admit I'm not exactly known for my strengths of dealing with stress, hurt and more. However, I do consider myself of pretty darn sound mind. Thoughts of suicide can present themselves to people of all ages. I remember my first thought of it was around the age of 14 or so. I don't remember the situation(s) that made these thoughts arise, but they were pretty serious to me at the time, and "at that time" is what matters. When I was trying to remember that first time, it reminded me of the story of Megan Mejer. This poor girl was the victim of something that wasn't around in my days at her age; cyber-bullying. She was just 13 years old and was the target of Lori Drew. A twisted, sadistic mother of one of Megan's former friends. Ms. Drew, along with one of her employees, created a fake MySpace account and posed as a 16-year old boy named Josh Evans. Ms. Drew and others had access to this account and used it solely to gather information on Megan to use later in humiliating her. All of this occurred because Megan had supposedly spread gossip about the woman's daughter.

    Megan found this boy attractive and they exchanged messages constantly. The "boy" claimed to have just moved to the area and didn't even have a phone number yet. Megan's family started seeing her spirits lifted. She suffered from depression normally, so this was likely some comfort for them. Eventually, the messages from "Josh" began to change tone. On October 15, 2006, Megan received a message that said, "I don't know if I want to be friends with you anymore because I've heard that you are not very nice to your friends". Megan replied and similar messages were sent back and forth. Megan decided to tell her mother about all of this and it caused an argument between them because of some of the vulgar language Megan had used in her replies and because she hadn't logged off when her mother had told her to. Megan then ran to her room. The last message from "Josh" was, "Everybody in O'Fallon [Megan had attended 7th grade in O'Fallon Missouri] knows how you are. You are a bad person and everybody hates you. Have a shitty rest of your life. The world would be a better place without you.
    " Megan replied, "You're the kind of boy a girl would kill herself over." She was found hanging by the neck in her closet 20 minutes later. Ms. Drew has since been indicted on three counts of accessing protected computers without authorization to obtain information to inflict emotional distress, and one count of criminal conspiracy. She was found guilty on three lesser charges (reduced from felonies to misdemeanors by the jury) on November 26, 2008. The jury was deadlocked on the fourth federal charge of criminal conspiracy. The case has caused several jurisdictions to consider legislation prohibiting harassment over the Internet.

    My point for including that story was not only because it touched and saddened me, but to emphasize that suicide is not confined to an age group. It knows no limits. Be it escape from sorrow, from the law, from bullies, from being a burden or a multitude of other things, it is a huge problem and both the young and old resort to it.

    Now, before I continue, some of you may be saying, "Talking about suicide and attempting it is just a cry for attention or help." Well, you'd be right at least 50% of the time. However, until you've been in the mindset of wanting to end it all, you won't know which yours turns out to be...or what theirs was.

    Since my first thoughts of it back when I was 14, it has come and gone many times. Some times more seriously than others. One would assume that, at a higher age, more rational thought would take over and anything resembling suicide would go by the waste side. Well, it didn't and it hasn't. In 2006, after going through a divorce, losing a home to foreclosure, going on social security disability for an anxiety disorder and coming within hours of being homeless, I gave up. Between my feelings of uselessness in society's eyes and the utter failure I felt I'd become, I could cope no longer.

    I found myself lying in bed at night with absolutely nothing but the many different ways I could kill myself, running through my head. Tears flowing, some of the most horrid methods entered my mind. "I have swords! I could fashion some kind of contraption with weights to plunge them into my heart" or "Wait! I live near train tracks! Quick! Painless! That's it!" Some hours later, I fell asleep. I awoke remarkably calm and quite literally resigned to the fact that I was going to die that day. I lived with my (twin) brother at that time and I had become so outwardly depressed that each and every time I left the house, he tried his best to prepare himself for the fact I may not be coming back. Yes, he had tried and tried to change my ways of thinking every time this kind of thing came up, but he knew he couldn't stop me short of calling the police or tying me down. By trying to put myself in his shoes, I assume he didn't call the police because of how it may make things worse for me...if not only emotionally.

    Anyway, later that day, the tears started flowing again and I finally rose up and walked out the door. There were train tracks not 100 yards away from the house that we rented. Wiping my eyes enough to see where I was going, I headed that way. In no time, I was there. I walked along the side of the tracks just waiting for that fateful sound. A few minutes later, I heard it. As the train's horn grew louder and louder, I cried harder and harder. I knew I was about to make my own twin brother's life a living hell. I hoped he wouldn't find me, that some stranger would. I couldn't figure out who to care most about....them or me. It was then that the train was now there. I made one step toward it then froze, dropped and bawled harder than I ever had. I was now crying harder because, 1) "Why do I always have to care so fucking much about everyone else?!?" 2) "I'm so lame I don't even have the balls to do this!" and many other reasons. I had already felt like a failure in life and now failed at having the courage to end it.

    I went to the small park very nearby, sat at a picnic table, laid my head down and cried myself to sleep. I don't know how long I slept and it's irrelevant. When I awoke, I headed home all cried out. Somber, but sans tears, I slowly walked home. I don't remember much else about that day but a few days later, I found myself depressed yet again but, surprising even myself, not crying. I was hurting just as bad, but not a tear fell. Again, the thoughts entered my mind. "You obviously don't have the courage for something so messy, so what now?" I asked myself. I was surprised at how calm I was while thinking of such a serious thing. I believe it was because I had again resigned myself to the fact that I was going to die. I didn't know right when or the exact method, but knew it would be by my own hand. After a considerably short time thinking about it, I decided I was going to strangle myself. I took the long, strong, laces out of my boots from my Army days, laid on the bed, got comfortable and lay there. My eyes open but not looking at anything specific. I don't even remember what was going through my head at that exact moment, but I assume I was trying to come to grips with what I was about to do.

    As I lay there, I found myself twisting the two laces together as I stared off into space. I remember letting out a heavy sigh, lifting my head slightly, wrapping the laces around my neck then through themselves, laying my head back down, swallowing and then pulling the laces tight. The bedroom light was on and the door was closed. The fan was the only sound in the room now. As each moment passed, I would consciously pull the laces even tighter. I remember thinking, "I never realized these laces were so long." They were partially wrapped around my hands and once around my neck. My arms were laying to my sides on the bed. Each time I got the nerve, I'd pull them tighter.

    I, after what seemed like 5 minutes, but more likely one, started to notice the changes happening to me. My face felt extremely tight and flush...much like when you're upside down, but multiplied a few times. My vision started to fade in and out and I remember thinking, "Wow! I'm actually doing this! I'm actually going to die soon!" As my vision darkened more and more, I took note of how the sound of the fan in the room was changing. It was now silencing and loudening in rhythm with my now-slowing heartbeat. Silent, loud...silent...loud....... ......silent...................... ...loud. "I'm actually dying!" I remember thinking again. The sounds changing and my vision fading, I told myself that this was taking too long. I regripped the ends of the laces and prepared to pull as tight as my strength could muster. As I did, the laces shot out of my left hand. I quickly pulled back on them again, half sad and half angry at the thought of having to "start this whole process over". I never did get the laces as tight as I had the first time and eventually started to cry, released them, turned onto my side and cried myself to sleep.

    The next day, I remember my brother and I were looking for something to eat in the kitchen and I muttered, "I tried". Not hearing me, he said, "Hmmm?" A little louder, I said, "I tried last night". He said, "Tried wha...", turned around and saw my face and knew exactly what I was referring to. He hugged me. I had tears in my eyes but wasn't crying per se. I don't remember much else about that day but do remember that night I was watching TV and was alone in the house. My brother, I assumed, was out in the garage doing his woodworking hobby. Then there came a knock at the door. It was an odd knock. It didn't sound like knuckles, it sounded like metal....like a flashli.... "No. No way!" I thought. I opened the door and there stood three police officers. In a very calm and reassuring manner, one officer said, "Are you Cliff?" I said I was. "Cliff, I understand you're not doing too well, buddy. What's goin' on with you?" he asked. I don't remember how I answered, if at all. After a short pause he asked me to step outside. It was then that I saw my brother. He, my sister and her husband and kids were standing at the street in the background. The officer asked me to turn around, spread my feet and interlace my fingers behind my head. "I just need to make sure you don't have anything that you can hurt yourself with, okay Cliff?" In just above a whisper, I replied, "Yeah". I had a pocket knife and some nail clippers that they took from me and then let go and asked me some more questions.

    I don't remember his or my own words after that, but I do remember that some sort of "victim counselor" came out and talked for a short bit but, because it had been more than so-and-so hours, he couldn't force me to go anywhere. Eventually, law enforcement left. They had given my knife and nail clippers to my brother. Then me, my brother, sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew, went into the house. I don't remember much about that either except my niece hugging me with tears in her eyes and, at some point, me going to get the laces and handing them to my brother-in-law. The rest is kind of a blur.

    Since then, I have thought of suicide again, but not as seriously. Seriously, but not as imminent. I guess you could say I've wanted to die many times since then but haven't attempted it. I've done a lot of crying over these years since then and have made myself physically ill at times from it. I have come to know some very special people in that time and one of them, I actually talked out of suicide. Ironic, huh? Her friendship and mine is impenetrable and will hopefully last forever. I'm on medication for depression now but it only does so well being that much of my depression is situational rather than chemical. The medication takes the edge off of it, I guess you could say.

    As per usual, my post is long-winded and seemingly never ending. I do that when pouring my heart out. Therapeutic? I don't know. Informative? I can only hope so. My point for writing this was to open the eyes of some and simply explain to others. Please know that suicide can be a very, very deep hurt that all rational thought loses out to. If a loved one of yours took their own life, please don't see them as selfish. See them as at wits end and knowing how very hard it is to deal with the "Who's gonna find me?", the "How will this affect so-and-so" makes it all that much harder and if they still went through with it, I can assure you it was no easy undertaking.

    I admire any of you who have ever let it run through your mind and pushed it out. Please just remember, people deal with crisis in different ways and some are stronger than others. Please don't harp on what they did to you or other loved ones but see and remember the good times you and they had together. They would want that. More than anything, at that time, they would want nothing more.

    Until next time...

    I have implemented a new commenting system. Sadly, in doing so, I inadvertently lost all comments made prior to December 28, 2011. My deepest apologies to those this adversely affected. If it's any consolation, it makes my blog here look pretty darn unvisited over the years.
    If this article is still online, I'll still reply to any and all comments that warrant it. Never feel like an article you view here is too old to bother with. Comments are always welcomed!
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    Monday, August 3, 2009

    Stupid Products: Are You Serious?

    Most of you don't know me but, if ya did, you'd know I absolutely despise having my intelligence insulted. My first real memory of realizing this was some time in the 90's. I was watching TV with my (then) wife and a commercial for either a detergent or a deodorant came on. It featured a technological marvel. This gadget, however, was not the product being sold...just the one insulting our intelligence.

    There was a shirt lying there neatly with its sleeves out to the side and into the frame comes this hand holding what looked like a white stick with a handle and a blinking red light at its tip. The angst started when the red light was painfully, obviously inserted via editing after filming. Anyway, it was an "odor detector" and it was being held at one armpit of the shirt, then the other. To prove their product worked, the side without the featured product made the red light flicker faster and a beep-beep-beep sound. Much faster and more annoying than it was on the other armpit.

    These people actually expected us to believe this thing could differentiate between a fresh armpit-of-a-shirt and one that had odor. I immediately lost my mind both laughing my ass off and looking nauseous. I don't remember what I said, exactly, but it was likely something like, "Oh give me a #@!*%^$ BREAK!". From that day forward, I have very little patience for the company or the product if its advertisers deem it necessary to treat me like I still believe in Santa Claus.

    And why is it a seemingly simple task becomes nearly impossible when a product comes out? It may have been this product that is coming to mind when I think of this, but I'm not sure. Regardless, it was indeed a can opener of some sort and the woman trying to open a can the ol' hand crank way shouldn't be in a kitchen much less working such complex machinery. She had sauce flying everywhere and when trying to retrieve the now-detached can lid, instead of trying to get a finger under an edge, she plunged her finger into its contents, up to her second knuckle. She also had apparent trouble holding the can down in one place. Sigh....I digress.

    I rambled on about that to go into the fact that there are so many idiotic products out there and their accompanying infomercials I will sometimes actually sit and watch just to laugh at them. I surf some odd sites, as you may have already noticed, and in doing so I come across some interesting (if not creepy) people. They find links to the weirdest things and seem to make a game out of finding the most ridiculous, yet real, products out there. Doing this from memory, I didn't have as much luck as I'd hoped I would, but found 3 products. Some you may have heard of, one or two, perhaps not.
    • The Snuggie: This is an "invention" that has parodies out the ying-yang now and is basically, what they call, a blanket with sleeves. They want $19.95 USD for this thing. Thank me later. I'm gonna save you some money! Grab your extra large uncle's XXL bathrobe, lay it on the bed with the front toward you, put your arms thru the sleeves and voila! You're all set! (Some models even have an included belt for those days ya just wanna cinch that puppy up...bathrobes, I mean. Not the Snuggie).

    • The Kush: Starting at the low, low price of $38.95 USD, this baby helps your poor women out there with boobs that keep you awake. This amazing and profound product even claims to help avoid cleavage wrinkles! Yes! That's right! You too can forget those long nights awake worrying about the wrinkles your gigantic breasticles cause. Aaaaaand, here's my idea: (Concept and design copyright 2009 - CliffyTX. All rights reserved) Grab a room-temperature 12 ounce can, for best results use non-carbonated beverage, and tuck that lil devil between your lovelies and snooze your cares away. The best part? If ya get thirsty during the night? Pop that bad boy open! Comes with a straw. Who loves ya more than me, heh? Can too hard? Well, try my handy, dandy large roll of ace bandage! Act now, and I'll include a partial roll of toilet paper! (Extra absorbent for those heavy-drool nights)

    • Comfort Wipe: This directly from their site: (My emphasis and comments in bold) For over a hundred years we've been using toilet tissues the same old way. Now there's a better way with the extended reach and comfortable to use Comfort Wipe™. It grabs and holds the toilet tissue in perfect postions (Yes...they spelled it this way) so you can easily wipe yourself. When you're done, just dispense the soiled tissue right in the toilet with the press of a button. (Isn't pushing a button much more hassle-free than that pesky ol' opening-of the-hand routine?) Comfort Wipe™ extends your reach a full 18" while the anotomical (Yep. Their spelling again) design follows the contours of your body for perfect cleaning. (It's the end of the line for the trusty shower) It's perfect for everyone, especially if you have trouble easily reaching because of physical limitations (i.e. Your butt looks like two full-grown adult raccoons fighting in a burlap sack) such as bad shoulder or other mobility litimations (I promise. These are all their doing. I oughtta hit 'em up for an editing/proofreading job!). Now you'll never have to touch a dirty toilet tissue!

    I would have liked to have found more, and could have easily with the plethora of them out there, but my computer was/is running low on memory and to be quite honest, I didn't want to steal all the same old lists that others had taken the time to research and provide. I tend to write a lot when I get to posting so maybe it's best that I stop here. ;o)

    Until next time...

    I have implemented a new commenting system. Sadly, in doing so, I inadvertently lost all comments made prior to December 28, 2011. My deepest apologies to those this adversely affected. If it's any consolation, it makes my blog here look pretty darn unvisited over the years.
    If this article is still online, I'll still reply to any and all comments that warrant it. Never feel like an article you view here is too old to bother with. Comments are always welcomed!
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    Saturday, August 1, 2009

    Over-Protection: Society in Panic Mode

    I touched on this in my July 30 post but wanted to spend a little more time on it now. It seems that...well....no, it's obvious that society has hit the panic button since my younger days. When I was a kid, when I messed up bad enough, I got spankings. Many of you probably have as well. The majority of us are fine and suffered no lasting effects from it. For the sake of this article, I mean spankings here and there, not continuously or overall abuse. Society today has over-compensated for those of us that have vowed, "I'll never do that to my child!".

    Today, if you so much as raise your voice to your child in public, you risk having the police called on you. Let's face it, unless you fall to the ground sobbing and explain to your child that your behavior hurts your feelings in some way to make them feel guilt, time out does not work. Sure, for minor things maybe, but not lying, stealing, cheating, profanity, etc. I firmly believe, and have to assume because I have no children, that if you sat your child down and had a true, sincere heart-to-heart with them and take the time to explain why it upset you, why it's wrong and why they shouldn't do it again, that it will make an impact on their behavior. If your talk has no effect and/or the behavior happens again and again then, damn it, they need a swat on the ass. I discuss discipline with any women that I may become serious with when it's been determined that we'll live together and marry. It's important to wait until I'm invited into the subject, but I believe it's a very important one.

    Now, on to another facet of over-sensitivity in society today. Remember seeing your dad/uncle/grandfather (hopefully not all the same person or you have much deeper issues) toss a baby a foot or so into the air and catch him/her? When a little older, going out in the yard, taking the child by both hands and swinging them around and around? Well, I saw a video today of a woman in Alabama who apparently had one of these (or something similar...may be just a backpack strap or something) attached to her child and was slowly sliiiiiiiiiiding him across the floor. The kid was completely relaxed and likely having an absolute ball. Well, she's now in jail without bail and charged with felony first-degree cruelty to children. Any of the above scenarios I mentioned would now, in all probability, land you in the same boat. I present the video for your inspection:

    Does the woman look upset and and at wits end? Hardly! She was having a day out with her child and having fun with the lil rugrat and is now in jail for it. It seems some staff and fellow customers at the store observed this and someone called it in. It should be noted that the child had marks on his neck from it, but that hardly adds up to abuse. You get marks from clenching your hand too long, from leaning against a table's edge...it doesn't mean you were hitting someone or slamming into a table. Although I may very well be wrong in my take on this video, the core issue still stands true and we've become so sensitive to children that they can no longer have fun, be made to mind or deal with defeat. I believe it's going to affect their adult lives if over-done and they're sheltered from absolutely everything. It's sad really. Sure, some of you are saying, "Yeah! Okay! 'Some pooooor child is gonna be a basket case when he's older because he wasn't beat!!!'". That's taking my statement, and this article, a little too far. Regardless, in the end, your opinion is yours and mine is mine. I just chose to make mine public. Here's hoping your child grows up fine and becomes very successful and never needs a therapist.

    Until next time...
    I have implemented a new commenting system. Sadly, in doing so, I inadvertently lost all comments made prior to December 28, 2011. My deepest apologies to those this adversely affected. If it's any consolation, it makes my blog here look pretty darn unvisited over the years.
    If this article is still online, I'll still reply to any and all comments that warrant it. Never feel like an article you view here is too old to bother with. Comments are always welcomed!
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    Thursday, July 30, 2009

    New Rules: Inspired by Bill Maher - First Edition

    From time to time I'm going to take a page from a guy who I watch on HBO. His name is Bill Maher. He has a segment at the end of his show called New Rules and, barring copyright infringement, I'm going to make some of my own. These will all be original, not from ol' Bill. If any seem strikingly similar to any of his, it will be completely coincidental. There may, however, be some similar to what a lot of people say/think, but it's my turn to voice 'em.

    New Rules:

    • It is no longer cute, adorable, precious, etc when old people dance They look like idiots and they're just gonna keep doing it if someone doesn't tell them. When I'm old, if I live that long, and I get up and start looking like a 'tard, can someone please tell me? I may just test you. If you look in my general direction and see me gyrating in the same fashion as someone having a seizure and don't say anything? I'm gonna shove my cane up your ass. Pray I don't have my walker with me.
    • Stop the inhumane act of naming twins with rhyming names I'm a twin myself and luckily didn't suffer this fate, but can only imagine what it must be like to hear, "These are my sons, Cliff and Biff" or "Bob and Rob". This stopped being cute right around the time they learned how to talk. They have to live with it for the rest of their lives. Being referred to as a set, will invariably traumatize one of 'em. The same goes for similar names as well. For example, Tim and Tom, Fred and Frank, Cheryl and Charlene. Get my drift?
    • Stop creating "nobody loses" teams/sports/events I, and likely all of you reading, have lost at something. It sucks...bad. It may even make you cry or want to run away from home, but damn it, we survived it. There are so many parents today so afraid their little Bobby is gonna get his feelings hurt if he and his team can't hit the side of a barn with a cannon, much less a baseball with a bat. If ya suck at it, find a trainer or find a new hobby. Unless you're getting paid for what you're competing in, it's important that children learn that you don't always get what you want. Not everything in life is handed to you or split evenly among everyone.
    • THINK before you post a video on Youtube (or any video site) I feel so bad for so many young (and, let's face it, not so young) ones today. Primarily, I'll focus on those around the ages of 13-17. With guys, it's usually idiotic stunts or fights, with girls, the list is longer I'm afraid. I could (but won't) point to at least 5 examples of each of these things: Girls "booty-dancing," girls filming each other on the toilet, girls pantsing (aka depantsing) each other, how can I word this next one delicately? This is an adult blog but I'm not sure how crude I wanna get with it yet. Um....well....they expel air from their loins. (Yes, I know the correct term[s], I'm just not gonna go there at the moment). There's a ton of things these poor kids are filming and posting for the world to see. Many are doomed to something we older folks never had to deal with; Internet background checks. My age is some of the reason for this, but I had to include it in my list of New Rules.
    • What happened to that thing called mercy? So often today, we see on the web and the news, kids beating each other with so much fury and unwavering rage that it truly concerns me. Don't get me wrong. I'm no goody-two-shoes, but in my day, people fought primarily with their fists and a kick here and there. Kids today...of ALL ages...are punching long after someone is out cold, doing piledrivers on someone's head when they're down and beating them with the same unadulterated hate that I would liken to finding the person who shot my parents dead. (My parents are alive and well. This is for example only). This is just something I've noticed as a growing trend and thought it deserved a spot here.

    New Rules: Gender-Specific - Ladies
    • Stop taking photos from above your head Aside from being middle-aged now and the urge to judge younger generation inherent within, this is to help you. It's primarily young girls who do it. It is common knowledge across the world wide web that this is a slimming camera angle. It's overdone!! It also makes many think you're a whale trying to hide that fact.
    • When taking your photo in a mirror, get the damn thing out from in front of your face I can't begin to count how many photos I see of a bright flash of white, with boobs and a cute belt. Either wait 'til ya have a friend to take a photo of you or get a camera with a viewfinder that you can aim where you want it. It looks like you couldn't find the time to take a photo that actually shows you care what people think.
    • Quit the "I'm a bitch and proud" act From a male standpoint, which coincidentally happens to be my gender, this makes you look like a girl who can't wait to get into a fist fight. It's fine to feel empowered, independent, successful, but you don't have to make it turn you into someone that no man (or many else for that matter) in their right mind would want to associate with.
    • Even spandex has limits I absolutely adore women in spandex...still, but if you haven't seen your feet since you were 12 and you're not pregnant or overly-endowed upstairs, you're too big for spandex!! If you can see your skin tone through the spandex, you're too big for spandex!! If your ass looks like you're hauling a load of cauliflower, you are too big for spandex!!
    • If ya prefer the "bad boy" type, SURPRISE! He's likely gonna be bad I speak from personal experience and from conversations with exes. I've, more than once, been dumped...who hasn't? The ones who are honest about why, can be very revealing. I've had at least three tell me it was because they were looking more for the "bad boy" type. Well, I recently caught up with them and asked them how life had been over the years. Girl #1: Her boyfriend got her and himself thrown in jail. Girl #2: Her ex-boyfriend beat her almost daily and is in and out of jail. Girl #3: Her husband has been to prison. He has punched holes in walls during arguments (Thankfully not hit her) and now tells her where she can and can't go, who she can and can't be around and how to dress. Need I say more?

    New Rules: Gender-Specific - Men
    • Put your damn shirt on Being the ever-interested-in-what-women-think kinda guy I am, I pay attention to what women say, write and otherwise share. Taking photos of yourself without a shirt on, especially if your face is out of frame, makes you look like all you care about is your killer, ripped bod. Women see it as shallow and self-loving. When women admire a man's toned upper body, it's usually when he's doing some kind of labor-intensive work where he needs/wants to keep cool...or possibly get a tan. So ya work out? Great. If you're proud of it, wear tighter shirts or shorter sleeves.
    • Admire women more quietly If you see a gorgeous woman across the street, look at her...hell, if you can get away with it, maybe even stare, but don't yell out that you like the swing in her backyard, want her to have your babies, that her looks should be illegal in public, etc etc etc. Whistling as loud as possible and/or crying out at the top of your lungs never, never, never....ever works. If it happens to, then she probably just left after a lengthy "session" with Rocky. Sure, some will go home and think, "Wow...someone found me attractive" but most will be thinking, "He actually thinks I'm gonna perk up and walk over to him? HA!" or, worse yet, actually yell out that she requires at least a 3-incher or that you should take a shower and try again. If you do these things when alone, you're beyond help. If you do it with a group of guys, be the one that has some respect for her....and yourself. Sure, you'll probably go home alone, but if she was across the street and heard a gaggle of idiots, she wasn't going home with any of ya to begin with. Meeting someone on the actual street/sidewalk pretty much only happens in the movies anyway.
    • Stop calling your wife and/or girlfriend your "ol' lady" To put it lightly, it makes ya sound like a prick. Like your wife/girlfriend is no more than property. Unless you're dating your grandmother, ya may wanna leave that out of your vocabulary. Likewise, "the ol' ball and chain" went out when the word "swell" stopped meaning "great" and started referring to what your eye does when your wife or girlfriend punches you.
    • When trying to avoid an argument, "Yes, dear" is not always the right answer My dad, as did many of yours, told me that when ya just don't have the energy to argue or debate, the best answer is "Yes, dear". This works fine when it's a lighthearted disagreement or passing feud. This does NOT, however, work when in a very heated and intense argument. It fuels the fire that is shooting from her eyes. Trust me on this one.
    • Being a mama's boy is good....to a POINT. I'm close to my mother. VERY close to both parents. People admire how close my relationship is with my parents is...BUT...when you start neglecting your damn marriage for their sake, you don't deserve a wife. If you're kissing your mother's ass so deeply that when she speaks it's YOUR breath, you're OVERDOING IT!

    I hope these shed some light on some things for some of you. Most everything here is meant in a tongue-in-cheek way so if any of it enraged you...you need to step away from the computer, grab a drink, chug it down, go outside, build a bridge and get over it.

    Until next time...

    I have implemented a new commenting system. Sadly, in doing so, I inadvertently lost all comments made prior to December 28, 2011. My deepest apologies to those this adversely affected. If it's any consolation, it makes my blog here look pretty darn unvisited over the years.
    If this article is still online, I'll still reply to any and all comments that warrant it. Never feel like an article you view here is too old to bother with. Comments are always welcomed!
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    If you attempt to comment and it fails or you see an error message, please email me immediately.

    Wednesday, July 29, 2009

    Shock & Awe: Confessions Of A Possible Sicko

    This is my first blog post on an account I've had for ages. I felt a bit silly typing out words that, in all likelihood, no one would ever see unless I invited them or a really, really bored search engine spider found it. I have decided to take my chances on the latter and, maybe...at some point, tell some people. Now...on to the meat of the post:

    There's few things about me that most people don't know. Outwardly, people know me to be generally kind, witty, intelligent, articulate and a deep thinker. If they don't, they never took the time to find out. Well, my mom, dad, brother and a couple of other people know about the forthcoming topic, but no one else. I'm neither proud nor ashamed of it, but felt it time to share for any who cared to know.

    It was 2002. I was absolutely bored to death one day and it took me forever to settle on a subject to "research". Up to this point, every time I had decided to go on a "fact-finding mission" it had been somewhat sexual in nature. I thought and thought and then thought, almost just in passing: "Gore....no....blood and gore!" Thinking I wouldn't find anything (or very little), I typed it in and waited for the results. I was wrong...dead wrong. HA! Terrible pun! I kill me sometimes. <----ANOTHER one. I remember the first site I checked out. This one still exists and will have the honor of being the first-ever link posted on my yet-unknown blog. Its name is Rotten.com. It was the first on the list and far be it for me to skip and jump around. I saw lots of clickable links once I arrived at Rotten and couldn't wait to delve right in. Now, before I continue, let me make clear that regardless of what you may think of me by this point, this topic was not and is not one I did/do for any sort of gratification aside from curiosity. Morbid curiosity and an intrigue at seeing the news behind the news. To this day (7 years at the time of this post), I still feel for many of the victims. If viewing such material has changed me in any way whatsoever, it has been to make me more sensitive, more compassionate and more sympathetic to what goes on all over the world.

    That being said, I'll continue. The photos ranged from that of a worker that slipped and fell into a large piece of machinery and crushed. All you could see was the top of his head but it was obvious his days had ended. The machinery was halfway into his head. Then a victim of lightning from the 1920's. The bottoms of his feet, purportedly, had been blown off. (The wording dramatized this one a little more than accurate). His right leg seemed quite cooked and burnt and he was lying on a bed. His eyes are open and don't look to be wide open in a forever-frozen death stare, so I can only assume he survived and posed for the picture. I'm 99% sure this photo was on the site, deep in what would be Rotten's archives, but I just went and looked and found it on their first page. Rotten.com has lost much of its popularity for the morbid and grotesque, primarily based on the fact that they took (and still take) ages to update with new material. The key to any site, forget the content, is keeping the content fresh and they failed miserably at this. Another thing that Rotten did (and many similar sites since) was add porn. I'm not sure why porn was added in with something as "unique" as accident victims, murder victims and the like, but luckily they aren't usually found unless you choose to click on such content.

    Now, touching on the types of people you'll find at such sites, aside from myself. You'd be quite surprised at some, not at all by others. You can find policemen, firemen, paramedics, morticians, nurses...tons of regular, everyday people on these sites. Now, you will find the nutjobs that seemingly "get off" on this kind of thing and those who seem to have no heart to speak of. You will also find the kind you find everywhere on the web: Balls of steel, no fear, have never been beaten down, blah blah blah.

    The next site I went to I had to register to view. They had a forum and that's where the majority of everyday people would submit and/or comment/discuss the site's content. This site was Goregasm.com. Although this site still exists and where I spent a majority of my early gore-viewing days as well as became pretty close "friends" with quite a few, the site has been run into the ground. Believe me when I say you'd totally be wasting your time if you went there. It's become a ghost town and will remain that way under current management.  This site has closed to new members at last check

    Its sister site (owned by same man) was Ogrish.com. This site, by far, was the longest-running and most popular gore site on the net. Its down side was that it had some of the most cruel and heartless people mixed in with the good types I mentioned. It was the place to go to catch something "hot off the presses" in the way of gore. In time, and I don't know every single detail, the owner turned it into a very successful and widely-used media outlet called LiveLeak.com. Ogrish, the former leader in the gore scene has now spawned many spinoff sites.

    Another one I thought had true potential (and actually did if you look at fresh content alone) was Kiuma.com. It had some submitters who brought their own resources in for fresh, not-seen-anywhere-else content constantly. It was the usual forum drama that drove me away from there. The site is now gone.

    But I have to say that TheYNC is the one I go to daily now. It has up-to-date and fresh new content every day -- even some weekends.

    Many sites' videos will show up on other gore/shock sites.

    Believe it or not, it was this paragraph here that was my original reason for even starting this blog post. I'm now going to discuss the biggest, baddest, sweeping-the-net videos that can be found on the web and tell you my personal opinions of them and provide links when possible and or applicable. You click these, and all the other links I've posted, at your own risk. These sites aren't for the squeamish, nor are the videos I'm about to mention. I'll try my best to do them in chronological order from memory and with what little research I feel like doing:

    • Chechclear: This video was the first "big thing" (that I can recall, anyway) in the shock and gore community. It features a Russian soldier being beheaded by Chechen rebels. The knife was plunged into the side of his neck while a boot stood firmly on his head. The executioner then proceeded to saw the knife outward, cutting off his head. The victim was 19 year old Evgeniy Rodyanov. (Contrary to the beliefs of those who have never viewed beheadings, they are not the swift chops and guillotines from the days of old. They are brutal, painful and much more gruesome. They are usually done with a sharp knife or machete and done so in a sawing motion. There is far more pain and suffering with this method and it takes a "unique" type of person to have the lack of a conscience to perform this act). Update: It turns out that I may have been wrong about all of the details of this one. But, that being said, you can find the new and updated details, plus a whole lot more, in my new book.

    • Traingirl (as well as many other names): This developed this name because of the popular misconception that the victim was a girl when in fact it was 41-year-old Mary T. Wojtyla. She is walking with her lawyer in front of a train at rest. They then began to jog a bit, not realizing there was a train coming on the next rack. Her lawyer realized it in time, Ms. Wojtyla did not. The video features her trying to stop after it was too late, the train hits her and she flies out of frame, killed instantly.

    • 2 Girls 1 Cup: This one is not gore. It's simply sick, but a viral video across the globe. It has spawned many videos of viewers' reactions as well. It features two fairly attractive Brazilian women who start a beautiful, sensual (depending on whether or not girl-on-girl does anything for you) kiss and the sucking of a breast and then it all goes straight to hell from there. Suddenly there is a glass held under one of their rectums which quite disgustingly and quite massively unloads into said glass. The rest of the video is consumption of said load and let's just say vomit comes into play.

    • Mr. Hands: This one features Kenneth Pinyan. He had a thing with stallions. He liked to be sodomized by them. Well, in July of 2005, as a friend videotaped, he was given what he desired and as a result, died of a perforated colon.

    • The Dagestan Massacre: This one is pretty darn hard to watch, even for veterans of the gore scene. It features 6 Russian soldiers, all around the age of 18, who were captured while guarding a small village. They were poorly trained and were captured as a result. Their captors were Chechen Mujahedeen and showed absolutely no mercy in beheading all but one of them. The one in question broke free and ran for his life but was found and shot dead. This one is particularly shocking in the fact that their captors seem so nonchalant about it. Even laughing at times. It also includes some of the most heart-wrenching cries for mercy and those of pain that I've seen.

    • 2 Guys 1 Hammer: (Also referred to as 3 Guys 1 Hammer and The Dnepropetrovsk Maniacs): This video features the closest thing to true snuff that the Internet has yet to provide. Three teenagers in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine are seen in a leaked video they filmed themselves, of them committing 1 of a total of 21 brutal murders that they were charged with. It is the single most shocking example of complete lack of a conscience, and respect for human life that I have ever seen. Three teenagers brutally slam a hammer into this man's face, stab his stomach and eyes with a screwdriver and then finish their "fun" with hammer blows to the side of the head. No matter how easily you were able to watch any other video I've mentioned here, this one will stay with you for ages.

    • 1 Guy 1 Jar (and a few other names): This video features a man who thought it would be an extreme turn-on to insert a pickle jar into his rectum. Just before it's fully inserted, disaster strikes and it ain't pretty.

    That was the list of the most memorable and viral videos in the shock and gore genre. Take them as warnings or as a gateway into a new morbid curiosity that you may or may not think you had in you.

    There are some I didn't mention. They are just as shocking, memorable and heart-wrenching as any listed above. I believed they deserved their own list. Not because one life is more valuable than another, but because these videos were/are made primarily for one reason; as a warning to others. If you've lived life above ground over the last few years, you know that there is a war going on in Iraq. There have been journalists and contractors, among many soldiers and security forces there, that have gone to Iraq to do something to help document or help rebuild the country. Right or wrong, we're there and some feel compelled to help them if/when they need and want it. Some answered that call and paid for it with their lives.

    Below is a partial list of some of the victims and a brief summary about each. Before I get to that list, let me say that this list will be far from complete. The reason is that the sad truth is this: Extremist Muslim groups kill at, what seems to most outsiders, the drop of a hat. They kill many of their own race and religion as well as any "infidel" that dishonors them, their religion, their loyalty, etc. I have seen many, many beheadings and one is just as hard to see as the next. There are simply too many beheadings that have graced the pages of the world wide web to include them all. Below are the more infamous. With help from Wikipedia, on to the list...
    • Daniel Pearl:
      (October 10, 1963 – February 1, 2002) was an American journalist who was kidnapped and murdered in Karachi, Pakistan. At the time of his kidnapping, Pearl served as the South Asia Bureau Chief of the Wall Street Journal, and was based in Mumbai, India. He went to Pakistan as part of an investigation into the alleged links between Richard Reid, the shoe bomber, and Al Qaeda and Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI). He was subsequently beheaded by his captors.
      --In July 2002, Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, a British national of Pakistani origin, was sentenced to death by hanging for Pearl's abduction and murder.
      --In March 2007, at a closed military hearing in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed said that he had personally beheaded Pearl.

    •  Nicholas (Nick) Berg: (April 2, 1978 – May 7, 2004) was an American businessman seeking telecommunications work in Iraq after the US invasion of Iraq. He was abducted and later beheaded according to a video released in May 2004 by Islamic militants. The CIA claimed that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi personally beheaded Berg.

      The decapitation was released on the Internet, reportedly from London to a Malaysian hosted homepage by the Islamic organization al-Ansars. His killers claimed that his death was carried out to avenge abuses of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. soldiers at Abu Ghraib prison. This beheading and its accompanying video are somewhat controversial. Besides the obvious reason, many claim the video shows signs of Berg already being deceased prior to his beheading and audio edited in afterward.
    • Eugene Armstrong: a contractor for the construction firm Gulf Supplies Commercial Services of the United Arab Emirates, was kidnapped on September 16, 2004. He was beheaded on September 20, 2004 by the Tawhid and Jihad militant group. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi admitted that he personally beheaded Armstrong.
    • Jack Hensley: (September 22, 1955 – September 21, 2004) A colleague of Eugene Armstrong's, he was an American engineer from Marietta, Cobb County, Georgia, near Atlanta. While working in Iraq he was kidnapped and beheaded by terrorists.
    • Kenneth Bigley (UK): (22 April 1942 - 7 October 2004). A colleague to Jack Hensley and Eugene Armstrong, he was from Liverpool, England and was a civil engineer who was kidnapped in the al-Mansour district of Baghdad, Iraq on September 16, 2004. The three men were working for Gulf Supplies and Commercial Services, a company working on reconstruction projects in Iraq. After Bigley's death, it was claimed that the British Secret Intelligence Service (commonly known as MI6) had launched a rescue operation that had allowed Bigley to escape for a brief period, but he was recaptured at a roadblock, taken back to the Tawhid and Jihad safehouse, and beheaded shortly afterwards.

    These are the most "infamous" beheading videos. They barely scratch the surface, however, of the amount out there. A more complete list of the many victims and their stories can be found here.

    I've tried to give you some insight into one of the more, dare I say, mature minds of someone who views and has viewed these kinds of things. Many people slow down when passing an accident scene on the highway. I, metaphorically, slow down more...and stop. What the human body can go through (and become) fascinates me. What a human being is capable of doing intrigues me. The overall human condition that we so often only hear about, I seek out. I'm, otherwise, not so different from any of you. I hope I've helped you understand the thought process and reasoning that lies within those (like me) who are able to view such atrocities and tragedies. I consider myself quite normal. This, however, is relative. I leave it to you. Thanks for reading.

    Because of the constant rise and fall of these types of sites, the links I had provided for viewing and/or download were constantly having to be updated. In order to try and rectify this, I have removed them. As stated above, most, if not all, of the videos mentioned in this article are available to view free on quite a few web sites.

    Until next time...

    UPDATE: January 6, 2015

    I've now written an ebook that includes the stories above as well as many, many more! Nowhere else online will you find all of the information provided within -- all in one place. At over 22,000 words, it will provide you with the details of many more of the most viral videos found online in this genre.

    If you've enjoyed this blog post, you'll definitely enjoy the ebook! Click one of the links below to buy now! 


    For Kindle and Kindle for PC, click here. For iPad, Nook, PDF and others, click here. For a physical copy, click here.

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