A blog of acquiescent temper, miscellaneous opinions, and uncertain vote

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Tonight I went out for dinner at the TonTon Club West, a relatively small restaurant in Amsterdam’s Westerpark that distinguishes itself through the inclusion of various coin-operated classic video games and arcade machines on its mezzanine floor. Alongside classics such as Street Fighter and Pac-Man, they also have imported Japanese machines like Dance Dance Revolution and a rhythmic drumming game (that we could neither figure out the instructions for nor hear, but was still a lot of fun), and physical games including air hockey and various electronic Whack-A-Mole derivatives.

I’ve occasionally thought that — were I ever in a position to make an enormous, risky life decision — one of the things I might want to do in the future is own and operate a video arcade. I’ve long believed that playing games is a fundamental source of enjoyment that everyone should get to experience, and that despite the prevalence of home-based entertainment nowadays there still could be a market for communal, shared, social interaction via the medium of video arcade games.

TonTon Club West

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

At the beginning of this year I pulled the plug on almost fifteen years of blog posts on my personal site, The Watchmaker Project, even going so far as to drop the domain and hosting, expunging it from the web entirely. In stark contrast to what life online was like in 2004, it had become clear over the last few years that I had little to contribute to the online conversation around web design and development; additionally, I had begun to feel a general sense of disconnection from social media, and a desire to not want to participate in the online popularity contest that Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, et al (not to mention performative blogging) essentially are.

However, I am feeling the loss of a place to practice self-expression through writing. Between 2012 and 2018, when I was writing regularly, I found that it had a definite and noticeable effect on my ability to easily translate my thoughts into words across all situations, both personal and professional. Nowadays, though, even trying to compose something as simple as a Goodreads review or an email short circuits my brain to the extent that I find myself unable to form the simplest of sentences, let alone a coherent opinion.

So, it is to that end that I have thrown together this simple personal journal site, a place where I can quietly record my views and opinions, share my favourite music and literature, and hopefully begin to recapture some of the enjoyment in writing that I once possessed. I have no expectations of building an audience (or that most egregious of modern concepts, a ‘personal brand’) — there is an RSS feed if anyone is that way inclined, but if you choose to follow along, you should be aware … I’m mostly doing this for me.