Nothing Cures a Gaming Addiction Like...

A good old-fashioned beatdown.

Apparently drill instructors at a Chinese Internet Addiction camp beat to death a sixteen-year-old, Deng Senshan, for running too slow. For godssakes the boy was running! I've been working out daily for two months, but I still have to stop after about a mile and a half (Admittedly I'd gotten pretty bad). Would they not-so-surgically remove my spleen?

This is after news that treatment centers recently ended the use of electroshock therapy for the treatment of game addicts. This reminded me of a really cool photo I saw in a Nat Geo on China, featuring an actual treatment center for Internet Addicts. This isn't a hoax, it's the actual picture:

I say... escape on horseback.

Thanks to Melvin at DigiPen and Hilarie Cash for forwarding the news on China. Dr. Cash is an author and clinician who recently opened a 45-day, outdoors inpatient treatment program in the Redmond area. I was really interested in seeing the open house for it, to get a feel for what's what, but ironically I'll be camping.


Weekday Update

I think I've gotten too comfortable writing about feelings and events from the perspective of fictitious characters. At a certain point of blasting out kooky characters and odd science fiction, it feels more strange to take all of those details for yourself, distilling them into a representative and satisfying blog post. At least, that's how I feel right now. For the past month or so I've been writing a few thousand words of novel every day. And some of my characters are pretty fucked up. I won't lie to you, what they have to say is a lot more interesting than what I have to say. So usually I just help them to say what they have to say, and stay away from straying into saying things about play. Or my day.

So I've also been reacquainting my body to the mysterious forces known as gravity and motion. Funny how those make your brain work better. They've yet to sculpt my stomach into anything other than the usual curvaceous one-pack, but that's alright. I'm trying my best not to scrutinize too hastily.

What I'm really trying to say here is that by some wacky stream of events, my book received a beyond thoughtful review from Jim Rossignol at Rock, Paper, Shotgun (the second link is the review itself). I got introduced to John Walker at RPS a couple of years ago, when he and I talked about addiction for his PC Gamer feature (linked in the book review, but here also for gigs).

And now Raph Koster, who I quote and reference way more than once in Game Addiction, has posted a blog about the review before I'd even gotten around to posting it here. This is a sign. It reads: "Neils. Your blogging punctuality is questionable at best. At worst, it should be strung..." And the rest of the sign is illegible. At least that's my official line, and since I'm writing to tell you about the sign you're going to have to take my word for it.

Truth be told, I've spent the last few months taking a cautious sampling of all the things normal for a strapping lad in his mid-twenties. Dating a girl way out of my league, and failing terribly. Taking jobs way out of my league, and by odd coincidence doing quite well. Weeping.

And sailing

past this buoy

and this buoy

and this boat

and seattle

with my darling sister.

And that's the weekday update.