Posts Tagged ‘Humor’


Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

February 21st, 2010
A lot of people probably know DragonForce, among other things they’re featured with the hardest song on a Guitar Hero game. Wikipedia say’s they’re power metal, though a lot of people like them and don’t seem to like other power metal, myself included. The best way I can describe them is as ridiculously over-the-top, which is intentional and tongue-in-cheek on their part. Most of their songs are fairly similar, and tend to use a limited vocabulary focused on sword, warrior, storm, soul, stand, pain, ride, dragon, etc. Personally this just means it doesn’t really matter which song I listen to,  and I can expect the same enjoyable experience.
My experiences first hearing DragonForce followed successive stages. First I thought they were just ridiculous and out of touch, though I admired their guitar skill. Then I thought they were really funny. I still think they’re funny and ridiculous, but after going through those stages they became incredibely fantastic. I have a tentative hypothesis that enjoying them intensely becomes much more likely after first laughing at them. Perhaps simultaneously laughing about the music is signalling that one doesn’t take this that seriously, and allows one to enjoy more comfortably. I have an old fondness for fantasy and related imagery, so that might contribute as well.
I’m posting about them now as I remembered how extremely motivating they can be. I find them especially helpful when facing difficulties; comparing my own personal difficulties to their ridiculous lyrics both makes me smile and lends an invigorating, epic air to my struggles. Admittedly few people are actually working right now to prevent the extinction of humanity, and chipping in on that effort is fairly epic on it’s own. I refer more to laughing and becoming enthused when listening to them and thinking of my small, day-to-day challenges.
Give them a try and see what you think. Some very well known pieces are “Fury of the Storm” and “Through the Fire and the Flames”. In their main vein, “Black Winter Night” and “Operation Ground and Pound” are some I was just listening to, and something slightly different. My personal favorites though are the two quieter pieces I have, partially just because they stand out. I’ll include ”Dawn Over a New World” here, the other is “Starfire”.

Some additional quick reasons to reduce existential risk

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

December 30th, 2009

Steven Kaas at Black Belt Bayesian posted a great list of “sound-bite” reasons to reduce existential risk. Check it out, they’re both amusing and relevant.