Tsaiko's neat, nifty URL of the day is: Lord of the Rings in Two Hours
On Tuesday, January 15, 2002 at 09:30 a.m. Tsaiko was slowly going insane. This is why:
The link is to a joke. I found it funny, but for some reason humor is falling flat on me today. I think it might be because of the lack of sleep for the past two nights. First night because I couldn't get to sleep. Last night because I was playing FFIX right before going to bed. So all last night while dreaming my brain kept insisting on using Scan on random people in my dreams. Then I would wake up because my brain had to process whatever information Scan gave me about the person (I don't really remember what it was), then I would fall back asleep and finish the dream.
Look at the stars
My brain did this to me all night long. I was not amused.
I also remember being able to draw spells from paintings (which is a FF8 thing) and searching for jewels to call up GF's (yes, I know they're called edeilons or some word close to that spelling). Over all, it was not a restful night. Which may be why I'm in the mood I'm in. Quiet, contemplative, a little mournful, a little sad, a little wistful. Still. Like a pool sheltered from sun and wind by rocks, deep shadows and bone numbing coolness, the smell of dark loam and green moss around. The water is so still it acts as the perfect mirror, reflecting back shade and sky and yet somehow so clear you can see the pale sand and banded rock that lines the bottom. You know that if you drank the water it would be so cold that it would make your teeth ache. Yet for some reason, no matter how thirsty you are, you can't bring yourself to disturb the water. Nor can you bring yourself to look into it. You're afraid of what it might show you. The truth. The lies. You don't know which would be worse. So you sit in the shade, and contemplate it, too tired to move on but too bothered to remain.
Yeah, that's how I feel.
The mood was brought on because I keep hearing Coldplay's song "Yellow" playing in my head.
Look how they shine for you
And everything you do
Yeah, they were all yellow
Of course, if you've never heard the song quoting the lyrics isn't going to convey the melody. Sad and wistful and overall just beautiful. I always want to sing along when I hear it. I can never match how beautiful it is. My roomie doesn't like the song, is vaguely annoyed by it for some reason. I don't know why. I like it. It's very haunting. Yes, that's the word I'm looking for. Haunting. And that's how I feel by it today, as it plays softly in my head. Haunted.
I came along
I wrote a song for you
And all the things you do
And it was called yellow
I once found a music video on the internet that I really liked once. Not because of the quality of the video, which was mediocre. Not because of the series which was Magic Knight's Rayearth, parts of the first and early parts of the second series. And not because of the song, though I really am found of Elton John's "Yellow Brick Road." I don't know if it was the color "yellow" in the title that made me think of the Coldplay song or the mood. Though Elton John's song was a little more bitter, a little cynical. Jaded. Yeah, that's the word. The person singing "Yellow Brick Road" was more jaded.
So then I took my turn
Oh what a thing to have done
And it was all yellow
It was the description of the video that really stuck in my mind, the emotion the girl was trying to convey with the song and images. Imagine being the saviors of the world. Imagine being the most powerful, the most important, the most good. Imagine struggling to overcome a seemingly impossible evil. Imagine making friends, making enemies, finding true love. Imagine watching friends die, because of that evil. Imagine all this happened to you, in another world.
Then imagine having to return home.
Your skin, oh yeah your skin and bones
Turn into something beautiful
You know I love you so
You know I love you so
You'd be happy to be home at first. Ecstatic even. Away from hardship. Away from trying to survive in a strange world. Away from wondering and worrying if each day will be your last, if this battle or the next would be the last thing you ever did. Back to familiar things, familiar friends, familiar friends. Back to mundanity and the simple things and the simple worries. School. Work. Boyfriends/girlfriends. Curfews. Parents. Everything back to normal.
Then, it would begin to wear on you.
I swam across
I jumped across for you
Oh what a thing to do
'Cos you were all yellow
Who could you tell? Who would beleive you? Who would understand? Would your friends understand? No. they would think it was dream. Or maybe a great big adventure. All romantic and grand. They wouldn't understand lugging weapons and armor through mud. Or looking down and seeing your hands covered in blood as you tried to stop one of your friends from bleeding to death. They wouldn't understand fighting again and again, never knowing if you were going to be good enough to win. No, your friends wouldn't understand.
I drew a line
I drew a line for you
Oh what a thing to do
And it was all yellow
Would your parents understand? Of course not. Maybe they wouldn't beleive you either. Maybe they would pretend it never happened. Awkward silences whenever you brought it up or even mnetioned what had happened. Too loud, too cheerful voices covering up their unease. Maybe they would, but would act like it was better that you were back. After all why would you want to stay in the other world? Everything familiar and right was in this one. They wouldn't understand how hard it was to leave friends and love behind. They wouldn't understand how you've grown, how you've changed.
They wouldn't understand you.
And your skin, oh yeah your skin and bones
Turn into something beautiful
For you I bleed myself dry
For you I bleed myself dry
Eventually, all the little normal things would begin to grate on your nerves. And you would begin to think to yourself, "I never had to do math in the other world." Or "I wonder how my friends are doing? I wonder if those two ever go together?" Or "I wonder if they survived the final battle? I never got to see them before we left." Or "I wonder if the world is still okay? Did the evil return? Are they calling me back but I can't hear them?" Or "I remember the time we camped out near that one waterfall. How the birds would sing in the evening and the insects in the morning. I wish I could go back."
In the end, you be a person split between two worlds, belonging to neither and always longing for the other.
Look at the stars
Look how they shine for you
And all the things that you do
Tsaiko's neat, nifty URL of the day is: 8-Bit Theater
On Monday, January 14, 2002 at 09:10 a.m. Tsaiko was slowly going insane. This is why:
This is me. This is me getting hooked on yet another on-line comic: Oooooooh. Any questions? Also, for some reason my last post got put up three or four times. I'm cutting it back to just one. Pitas being weird I guess. Was bound to happen somtime. And now at Kemmy's insistance I present to you the second half of my POKE! at Mercedes Lackey rant. SPOILERS AHEAD! Some of the opinions expressed were borrowed from my wonderful roomie Miome. No Companions were harmed in the the making of this rant. Thank you, please drive through.
The bad are always bad: A reverse from the good are always good. Except in Merecedes Lackey's world there are only two types of evil. Sadism and greed. And that's it. Every single one of her bad guys is evil because they like pain in others and they want what they can't have. I dare you to find one that's not. If you do find one, I bet you two to one they become a good guy before two books have gone by. Seriously, there are more forms of evil in the world. What about the evil of being indifferent to suffering? Of turning away instead of helping others (not because you can't help them, because she uses that to make you feel sorry for the characters, but because they just don't care enough to help)? Evil doesn't come in two shades of black. It covers a whide range of colors from deep night to midnight blue, from the deep rusty brown of dried blood to the darkest shade of royal purple. So why do all of Mercedes Lackey's villains come in these two flavors?
Personal pet peeve here: And if that's your kinda thing and you find someone who's willing and consenting, why is sadism so evil? Not my thing, but I can understand that some people like it. And so it bothers me when I read a series of books where it seems that one... category of people is being stereotyped as evil. Anyways...
Another big problem is that we (the readers) are rarely given an explanation or even a justification for the villain's actions. Why is the dark mage from Vanyel's time (who's named escapes me at the moment) trying to invade Valdermar? Or kill of the Herald-Mages? Yes, he's evil and enslaving people, and killing people, but why? It's just assumed that as an evil person he really has no justification or explanation for doing what he's doing. He's evil because he's evil and there to make the good guys look good. After all, you can't look spiffy in your white uniform of goodness unless you have someone in black to fight, right?
Same problem holds true for Ancar and the mage that winds up helping him (from the Winds of Change trilogy, damn why can't I remember these people's names?). And even Ma'ar though he gets the most justification. He's trying to bring peace, bring order to the world. How he hopes to accomplish this by upsetting the social order of his time is beyond me, but I assume that Mercedes Lackey figured it out. Or maybe not. Yet we're never told WHY he wants the world to be this way. WHY he does what he does. WHY did Ma'ar become a moster? WHY is Ancar so greedy? Yes, you can have some people who are just naturally greedy, but you have to wonder why Valdemar attracts their attention so much.
And for that matter why are people trying to invade Valdemar instead of doing the sensible thing and going around it? Because the countries on either side are viewed as more of threat? Then why is Valdemar not? Because it sure seems like Valdemar keeps kicking these invaders butt. You'd think that eventually someone would figure it out. Otherwise, these people have the worse record keeping skills known to man.
And above all else, when I am introduced to someone who's bad with justification and reasons, I do NOT want them suddenly joining the good side. Why do you take the one bad guy I can feel for and empathize with and make him good? Why do you play me that way? Just when I thought you'd finally fixed this one flaw, they become good. Case in point: Tremane. I read a review once that said "What a relief! Tremane finally joined the good side." To me that just made the book even more contrived.
And I can't understand where these bigger and more evil of evils are coming from. Everytime Valdermar defeats the bad guys, seems like a bigger bad guys pops up in it's place. Unlike some books *cough**cough*Anita Blake Series*cough**cough* Lackey's seems to have hit a ceiling and stopped. The one to top them all are the echos of the Mage Storms left from Urtho and Ma'ar's time. Thus making Ma'ar the top enemy in her books. But who know if in some future trilogy a newer, bigger and badder enemy will appear? At what point do the enemies powers seem ridiculously strong? At what point do you say "This is it! No one can be more powerful!"
Maybe I'm asking too much of my authors by demanding that I know the reasoning of not only the good guys, but also the bad. I just can't quite understand a world where the good guys wear white, and the bad guys wear black (sometimes literally in Lackey's books). Where are the shades of grey? Where are the tragic villains? But I guess that's not why I read Mercedes Lackey. I read them for select characters. Not the plot. So I'll keep plunking down my money to get my fix. But until Merecedes Lackey fixes some of the problems in her books, I'll just be over here reading "The Fire's Stone" by Tanya Huff.
Tsaiko's neat, nifty URL of the day is:
On Thursday, January 10, 2002 at 07:22 p.m. Tsaiko was slowly going insane. This is why:
The Gifts I Would Give
I would give you food, if I could,
But you have no use for that anymore.
Water, too, is beyond your grasp.
The toys I would give you litter the floor,
But will remain forever still and silent.
I would give you a temple, if I could,
And dedicate it to your grace and glory.
Alas, I have neither skill nor money
Even if I did, a temple made by human hands,
Would never do you justice.
I would give you comfort, if I could,
My hand running along your arched back.
Fingers scratching just behind your ears.
Yet I'm afraid that once again,
You have stepped beyond my reach.
I would give you happiness, if I could,
Golden sunlight to warn, your bones,
Twittering, little birds for your amusement.
This too is beyond my capabilities.
So I'll have to trust you found it on your own.
Instead I find all I can give you is my sorrow,
Although you deserve nothing but my love.
All I can find are my tears and pain.
And the certain knowledge that your death,
Will never go un-mourned.
April 1st 1987 - January 9th, 2002
You were the bitchiest cat I knew.
That's why I loved you.
Tsaiko's neat, nifty URL of the day is: RInkWorks
On Wednesday, January 9, 2002 at 10:43 a.m. Tsaiko was slowly going insane. This is why:
I can NOT pimp this place enough. They have updated the Computer Stupidities page and the Things People Said page. Two wonderful, wonderful pages that will completely destroy your faith in human intelligence. Whoohoo! And now for some commenting on other people's blogs.
Nangke commented way back in October 22 about my rant about codpieces on mechas. She suggests that said codpieces were there to house the hip-leg joints of the mecha. Nangke suggests that mechas should be equipped with skirts to protect such joints, but that mechas aren't secure enough in their sexual identity to wear such skirts.
I don't see why not. I mean I have seen mechas with high heels and high boots, why not skirts? I mean if a mecha can fight with heels there is no way that wearing a skirt will make it any less kick@ss. Wait, they don't even have to be skirts. They can play them off as kilts! Or the divided pants the samurai use to wear. Cultural heritage in mechas I say. Come at another mecha with a samarai sword, gears and gyros screaming, and trust me they will not think anything less of you if you're wearing a skirt-like outfit.
I am so slack in my responses sometimes.
In other blogs, specifically White Cat's and Lilack, the series "The Dark is Rising" by Susan Cooper has come up. I too discovered this series during my middle school years. Specifically, "The Grey King" which is and remains my favorite of the series. In fact, I tracked down the book last year and bought it. After "The Grey King" I read "The Dark is Rising" (possibly the most well known book of the series) then "The Greenwitch" and "Silver on the Tree." If I remember right it took me a few years to track down "Over Sea, Under Stone" because my Middle School Library lacked that book. So I bought it. I think. It's been awhile. I might be missing a book in there, but I'm pretty sure that there were five books. Maybe six. Like I said, it's been awhile.
SPOLIERS FOR THE SERIES
If I remember right my biggest problem with the series consisted of the ending. Basically "The war between good and evil has been fought. Now it's up to humanity to decide whether it will be good or evil." Excuse me? I just read five book for that? What a cop out! What a waste of my valuable reading time! For some reason this ending was prevalent in the 80's. I remember coming across several young adult books/series that ended in such a way. It remains, in my opinion, one of the biggest cop outs ever.
But "The Grey King"? Lord, if I could write book like that I would. Braun was absolutely perfect as was his dog. I (heart) his dog (who's name I can't ever remember). The grey foxes were perfect enemies, sly and devious and given to strike at Braun and Will in ways they never expected. I loved that book. My only problem was with Will's sudden miraculous recovery of his memory. So much could have been done with that plot device, but wasn't. Alas, nothing is perfect. But that book comes close.
I only remember fragments of the other books. My disappointment at the ending. The horse skulled figure bedorned with ribbons in "Silver on the Tree." The sudden block of heraldrese in the same book (which, I am proud to say, I understood most of). The children's (a trio of brothers and a sister) Uncle winding up to be Merlin. The minion ofthe Dark (is that what the evil in this series was called? Can't remember. But I see Vagrant Story crossover potential...) who did a spell in a painting. One of the kids almost drowning in the ocean. The phrase "black Dog on your shoudler." The descriptions of grey mountains, golden haprs, riders emerging from the lake. The horse shoes with crosses on the bottom. The black rooks. A grandfather clock that imprisoned someone.
These small flashes are all that remains of the books in my head.
In other literary news, D from Technomancy made a few rants about how Tolkien slash shouldn't be done. I didn't read through all of them (can we say shor... oooh shiny). But I do have this to say. To fanfic writers nothing is sacred. I discovered this about the time that I discovered that there was a Transformers yaoi ring (they are robots DAMNIT! They can't actually doanything!), a Relena/Gundam story, and the fact that Jesus is a popular character in Bible slash. And above all else, people write fanfiction because they love a series. Do you know how long Tolkien has had a cult following? Yeah, I predict lots of Tolkien slash no matter how much people personally disagree with it. I presonally disagree with letting anyone who has written at least three novel length stories that have been approved by me write Gundam Wing fanfiction, but that's a whole other story.
Finally, in a comment in my LiveJournal Itland had this to say "In Norwegian, there is a rock song about erectile dysfunction. It is performed by "Sterk Naken og Biltyvene" in, intriguingly, the last album they ever made. In translation, it begins like this: "I love you so much that I am completely dizzy and queasy." There may be others, but that's the one that come to mind." So I stand corrected. There is a song about impotence. And what's really sad is after posting that particular train of thought, I had to explain to a IRC channel full of guys the difference between being sterile and being impotent. Sigh.
Fianlly, you should look at my LiveJournal simply because I've updated the color scheme and added an icon. Yep, Bahamut it is. He's cute for a dragon ^_^.
Tsaiko's neat, nifty URL of the day is: Keenspot IRC Chat Applet
On Wednesday, January 2, 2002 at 01:52 p.m. Tsaiko was slowly going insane. This is why:
My rant about Mercedes Lackey has been prempted by the randomness that is my life. Thank you.
Have you ever wondered why there are no rock songs about impotence?
This was the question my roomie asked me during lunch today. I must admit that the thought had never crossed my mind before. At first I just laughed it off. Then I actually thought about it. I mean, rock stars are known for drinking. And smoking. And durgging. And being under a lot of stress from performing and tours. So it seems likely that they out of all people would have "erectile dysfunction" as dictionary.com puts it.
So why don't rock groups write songs about it? I mean it's a serious, real world problem. And rock groups love to take the most inane things and write songs about them. Plus, it has the added bonus of dealing with sex. And we all know sex sells. So why not about impotence? Sing the blues about not being able to "get it up." Whine about how your girlfriend left you because you couldn't last. Rage against the unfairness of life and your manhood! Rock on!
Personally, I think there are no rock songs about impotence because guys feel uncomfortable about talking about it. And most rock bands are male. Female rock bands would sing about impotence or "penile problems" except for them it's not a problem. Unless their boyfriend has it. And somehow I doubt they would have a boyfriend for much longer if they sang about his bedroom problems. Maybe they could write a song about their ex-boyfriend having such problem. Sweet revenge that would be, especially if the break-up was bad. Yeah, I could see that happening.
I would listen to a song about impotence. Heck, I think it would be hilarious. What better way to undermine the fragile ego of men everywhere then to tout their problems to the world. But then again, maybe this would bring light to these problem. Maybe twenty years from the release of the song men everywhere would go "Yeah, I use to be ashamed of the fact that my sex life was less than long-lasting. I would hide the fact from my friends and be blackmailed by my former girlfriends. Then the song "Minute Man" came out and impotence became openly discussed. Now I feel no shame in saying that I have erectile dysfunction."
Then again, maybe not.
Of course, football players would feel no shame about such things. Because football players don't care! They are the most secure guys anywhere in the world. Why do I say this? Because after my roomie made this statement I looked up at the TV in the resteraunt. And there was a guy grabbing another guy's butt. At first, I was all "Hey! Yaoi!" Then I realized it was two football players. If any other two guysgrabbed each other in strange, inappropriate places on TV, it would cause an outrage. But not with football players.
Which leads me to wonder why there's not more football player yaoi. I mean, it would be so easy. Maybe too easy. That could be why there's not more football player yaoi. Because there's no challenge in it. No angst. No soul searching. Just two manly guys who are secure in their manhood going at it.
I think there's a great void to be filled here. Yaoi football players who later become rock stars and sing about socially upheaving songs about impotence.
Okay, I'm putting the blog down now...
Tsaiko's neat, nifty URL of the day is: Queen's Own
On Monday, December 31, 2001 at 11:34 a.m. Tsaiko was slowly going insane. This is why:
I figured since I was going to poke at Mercedes Lackey, I would also plug her. Hence the link to the "The Official Mercedes Lackey Fan Club" (as opposed to all the unofficial ones I suppose). And let's include a big ol' SPOILER WARNING FOR MOST IF NOT ALL OF HER VALDEMAR NOVELS.
First off, I want to start by saying that I read Mercedes Lackey and admire her for getting so many novels done. That takes a lot of dedication and hard work. And I feel a little guilty for casting stones considering I have a big zero (0) novels done (though I do have three started and past two chapters, does that count?). Also, Lackey gets mad kudos for addressing and doing a lot of stuff that others wouldn't dream of touching. Can we say openly gay hero? And I have to admit that the Last Herald-Mage trilogy starring Vanyel single-handedly started changing my viewpoint from "Ewww... gays are icky" to what it is today "Ooooh... yaoi. Wanna see." I'm still not sure whather this is a good thing or not.
Having said all that, I am now going to proceed to do some Mercedes Lackey bashing. You have been warned.
First off, I got through reading "Brightly Burning" last night. I was disappointed. Not from the writing style, which has consistently remained mediocre to good throughout most of Lackey's novels. No, I was disappointed from the mistakes in the books. Mistakes which should have been caught in the editing process. Half a page in italics. Mind speech that wasn't italized. A sentence with repeated words in it. Repeated sentences in a paragraph. There's nothing more jarring than just getting into a book and set back into reality because someone forgot to put quotation marks after someone stopped speaking.
It seems that recently more and more of Merecedes Lackey's books have these kind of errors. I almost never find these kind of mistakes in series by other authors. Heck, I rarely find such mistakes in her earlier books. But lately they seem to be creeping into her books with startling frequency. My only guess is that the editors are in such a rush to get her new novel out, that they don't do as through a job screening between recieveing her manuscript and putting it to print.
So this might not be Mercedes Lackey's fault. She may have no control over such problems (other than perhaps proof-readsing her own work to catch the mistakes someone is obviously missing). But let's talk about some of the flaws in the characters of her books. The good are always good, the bad are always bad, and if the good are acting bad it's because of some HORRIBLE TRAUMATIC EXPERIENCE IN THEIR CHILDHOOD DONE TO THEM BY OTHERS(TM) which they will overcome by the end of the book to become true heros of Valdemar. This is, of course, a generalizations. But not much of one.
The good are always good: Because if they weren't good, they wouldn't have been Chosen. While this makes sense that only the noble and dutiful and pure of heart are Chosen, it gets old after awhile. The Heralds can have personalities before being Chosen (remember those traumatic childhoods?) but by the time they go through the Collegium it seems like the flat iron of being a Herald has smoothed out any bumps in their personality. Before too long all the Heralds have the same mindset of duty and honor and rightousness and... you get the point. While this is part of the story, it seems like after awhile Mercedes Lackey is using this Herald-Companion relationship as a crutch to make sure people like her main characters. We (the readers) are never challenged to like someone despite their flaws. Instead, we are expected to like the main characters because they have no flaws.
Even main characters who aren't Heralds (Skad, Amberdrake, Darkwind... oh wait, Kerowyn... oh wait again, Tarma, Kethry, Karal... who gets a Fire-cat which is like a Companion on for Sun-Priests and a Companion companion, Darian, various and sundry griffons, etc) have this kind of pure goodness about them. You'll can never see any of these people cheating on their taxes, stealing pens from a bank, jay-walking, deliberately not working when they're supposed, etc. Basically, doing all the petty, little things that make the rest of us human. No, these people will always do what's right because it's right. Because of duty. Because of honor. Because of rightuosness... haven't we heard this somewhere before?
Of course, there are exemptions to every rule. And in Mercedes Lackey's books these exceptions are the ones that you know, up front, are going to die. Vanyel. Urtho. And now Lavan. Vanyel, who was openly gay and yet somehow made you feel so sorry for him that you didn't care. Hurting even when older. Trying to commit suicide. Having just one thing after another go wrong with him. Going to the mountain pass knowing he was going to die. Here was a flawed character who even though was a Herald managed not to have all the personality ironed out of him by it. Urtho, who only major flaw was that he didn't get more page time in the books. Imagine Geppetto trying to command an army. He sucked at it, but that didn't stop him from trying. And Lavan who in the end went slowly insane up on the mountaintop despite everyone's efforts.
Another thing that annoys me about her "good" characters are these sudden epiphanies they have for no apparent reason. Even Van has one. These fall into three catergories.
1) "Wow! I've been acting like a(n emotionally scarred, and abused) jerk. Why am I acting this way? I should clean up my act and do what these other people (who are always older and wiser) have been telling me to do." Example: Vanyel in the snow, right before fighting the ice drake in Magic's Pawn.
2) "Wow! I suddenly know exactly why this person is acting this way. Instead of being for the reasons everyone else (and myself before this little epiphany) have assumed, it's really because they were feeling this way. I now vow to use my sudden enlightenment to do right by this person." Example: In Owlflight, the guy who dies on the bridge (can't remember name... oh wait. Found it. Justyn.) with respect to Darian. I mean he was literally walking around and wham! everything about Darian's behavior suddenly made perfect sense to him. It was so obvious I almost cried.
3) "Wow! We have this terrible problem that we can't find a solution to. Suddenly, the Companions/gods/Heralds/Commanders/myself-the-main-character have come up with a solution which we say is obvious but really is being pulled out our asses it's so out of nowhere. We will now use said solution to heroically vanquish this problem." Mercedes Lackey does this more times than I care to think about. The most obvious set up being in one of the Mage Storms trilogy (I forget which one) where they solve the problem of how to stop the mage storms when Karal "accidently" drops the hoop into the water where they are making waves. I mean really, how many times can you find a solutions "just in time" without it beginning to sound hackneyed? Just once I'd like for this big huge problem appear and watch the Heralds of Valdemar screw it up. Of come up with a workable solution two days too late. Or never be able to figure out what would work. What I don't want to see in another "divine intervention" (dues ex machina I think is the technical term) that fixes the Heralds seemingly unfixable problems.
Okay, my rant about the good characters is getting too long. I'll rant about the bad ones another day. Until then.
Sex: No thanks
Location: In front of the computer
Webpage: Tsaiko's World
GW Page: Miome's Maxwell House
Favorite Anime: Digimon
Favorite Book(s): The Harry Potter Series
Favorite Fanfic: Whisper A yaoi Evangelion Fanfic by Twig
Favorite Food: Chicken and rice
Favorite Song: "Sick Cycle Carosel" by Lighthouse
Favorite Story on the Internet: Tower by Tsaiko (who is not above self-promotion)
Most annoyed by: People's who song is great put who the radio stations play too damn much