“No. As a developer, I need to be able to see what it’s going to look like as I make it, I can’t work like this.”

– A group member who was told they just had to assign a texture via a single method call in script to use our new ability effect UI framework in a Unity game
Keep in mind that this person is supposed to be an engine programmer

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Turn the page.

Something new is waiting for you.

Turn the page.

Text on text on text, letters assembling themselves into words and words into sentences, sentences into paragraphs.

Turn the page.

All of it lines and dots and swishes in a pattern of your language.

Turn the page.

You take in the patterns, you read, and you understand.

Turn the page.

It is your reality, your truth, your way of consuming and understanding the goings on within otherwise meaningless little symbols.

Turn the page.

Someone is telling you something with these symbols.

Turn the page.

With that page someone somewhere is conveying something to you, the reader, the watcher, the listener.

Turn the page.

They may be dead now, that writer, long dead and maybe even forgotten, but dead or alive here they are now speaking to you, conveying the message that they felt worth recording.

Turn the page.

Strokes of a pen, a pencil, the clicks of a keyboard, no matter the medium they took the time to tell you this, to pour out the letters that danced in their head, the very letters you read now.

Turn the page.

This is the contract you enter in turning the page, the contract between the writer and reader.

Turn the page.

Turn the page and you have given yourself, your listening ear your eyes your mind your time and perhaps even your emotions.

Turn the page.

Turn the page and in return they give you a glimpse into their heart, their soul, their reality.

Turn the page.

You may not see the tear stains there, blurring the words you read.

Turn the page.

You may not hear the subtle laugh, the longing sigh, the triumphant shout, but

Turn the page

And you feel them.

Turn the page

And the otherwise meaningless words start to truly mean something to you.

Turn the page

And the tear stains on the page do not have to be there, because now, they are your own.

Turn the page

 

I wish that I owned these walls.

I wish that every time I sat and stared at these blank empty walls I could do something about the ideas that jump around in my head. There’s colors and pictures and words that I could fill these walls with. They’re just so white, so clean, so inviting.

I don’t think you need to be any kind of artist to know the feeling. That overwhelming urge when there’s a blank piece of paper set before you and a writing utensil in your hand. Something should be there, something needs to be there. Doodles, words, scribbling, a magnificent piece of art exploding out of the fog of boredom and spontaneous inspiration.

Look at all of this room for activities!!

And here I am, inactive, staring at the walls that aren’t mine, at the walls whose owners wouldn’t likely take to my reasoning.

They aren’t even the textured kind of walls, the kind that look like someone just hastily splattered paint everywhere, no, they’re flat. They’re blank and flat and cruel.

I like to imagine what it’d be like if the walls and ceiling were all made of white board.

Dear me,

I noticed you’ve been having some hard times lately, so while I was around I thought I would leave you a message. A little pick-me-up, you know? I know that it won’t always help and I know that sometimes it takes a lot but sometimes it’s the little things that help the most.

You’re probably stressing over something. I know you. You do that a lot. Over little things, over big things. Over things you need to do and things you can’t control. I need you to stop drifting off to the past and stop staring off towards the future. Feel the now. Breathe in and feel your lungs expand. Breathe out and feel that breath leave, slowly. Feel your feet and your legs, your stomach, your chest, your neck. Feel your arms and your hands. Your neck, your head, your face. Stretch out move around. Feel the movement from deep down all the way out to your fingers and toes.

You exist. Today. Right now. In this time period of your life, the existence of humans, of life, of the Earth, of the Universe. Of this huge reeling time span stretching billions on billions of years you are alive. Right here. Right now. Whether it was for one specific purpose or complete and utter chaos the stars aligned the elements combined and made you. Infinite combinations of pieces of DNA littered across the world creating and defining infinite kinds of life and they combined just like this in such a way at this very time to make You.

You are alive. Elements floating around in tiny cells all linked together and functioning and living and splitting and dying, unconscious messages and movements and processes, tissues organs organ systems, all of this is working right now to create the life that you hold right this very instant. These same processes and relationships are going on all around you, inside of all of the people you have ever seen, and still there is you, different from anyone that exists or has ever existed or will ever exist. You are the miracle that is life and yet you are so unique that in the billions and billions of people that are and were and will be you stand out as an individual. No one will do exactly what you have done in the way that you have, no one will think in the exact way that you do behave or see or dream in the exact way that you do.

And I know that that makes you feel so small and separate and alone. You see yourself as a speck in a sea of life and ideas and you feel so intimidated and insignificant but you’re not. You compare yourself to the stars and the planets and the infinite expanse that is the universe that is time that is matter and you feel like there is no possible way that you could ever really matter to anything or anyone. The mistake here is that you see yourself as less than all of that, as less than the stars and the galaxies all around you.

In reality that’s you. You are seeing yourself in those distant towering mountains and waving trees. When you look up in the night sky, far away from city lights and noise, when you pick out the millions of twinkling stars in the sky, you’re gazing at a reflection of you. From the tiniest blade of grass to the largest celestial body, they’re made of the very same things you are. Elements, energy, warmth, life. That’s you. You are not a tiny piece of the universe wandering aimlessly, separately. You are the universe. You are a part of something so immense you can’t even fully comprehend it.

You feel it sometimes. I know you do. When your fingers lightly brush the petals of a flower, or you place your palm against the bark of a tree. During those small moments where you just sit and enjoy the warmth of the sun. You feel it there. That oneness. That joy. Even if only briefly. You feel those pieces of yourself in the Earth, you feel those elements of the Earth in you. And in those moments you don’t feel so small. You feel big. You feel excited. You feel a thrill of happiness because you realized what you truly are, you realized what sets you apart.

You are experience. You are seeing and feeling and discovering the universe. You are discovering and experiencing yourself. In the infinite expanse that is existence you were created on this planet, with life, with movement, with the ability to see and to know and to learn. You were given this time to experience yourself on this corner of the universe. Right here. Right now. You are in the universe and the universe is in you, seeing through your eyes, tasting through your tongue, feeling and shaping through your hands.

Sometimes it scares you. How much there is to do and to see and to learn. How little time there is to do it in. You stress and you worry because you fear that you won’t get the chances you seek. You fear that you’ll be stuck and limited in how much you get to experience. Instead of fear, you should turn it into inspiration. You have a drive, you lose it sometimes but I know it is in there. You have an infinite potential too. You downplay it, you doubt yourself, you even talk yourself down, but in the end you can’t deny it. You are a human being you are alive you have the capacity to Go and to Do and to Be. Stop fearing how little time you have you are only wasting it. Use it. Use every little tiny second you’ve got and do every single thing you can to take advantage of it.

In the end just do your best not to get so overwhelmed. It’s okay not to be running and jumping and exploring mountains every minute of the day. Remember that your own mind is infinite as well. Sometimes it’s okay to just lay down, get away from the world, and think. Take your frustrations and your worries and lay them out. Go through them one by one, explain them to yourself, get them out into the world. Recognize that some of them need to be let go. Recognize that others just need to be taken care of to be done with.

The more that you can allow yourself to stop and clear your head the more can enjoy the happier, less stressful things in life. If this means breaking down and crying it out, the sooner the better. Stop holding things in. Stop pushing feelings back. It’s a terrible habit of yours. You pretend to be me and you trick others, even yourself, into believing it. You and I both know, though. In the end a fake smile is much more painful than just letting it out. It doesn’t make you any less than what you are. Your capacity to feel so many things at so many times is just as much a blessing as it is a curse. Sometimes those feelings get tangled and stretched and you can’t help that. No one can. The best way to deal with negative feelings is not the shove them down out of sight, but to flush them out and start clean. Let yourself feel. Let yourself react. Allow yourself to be sad so that you can soon be happy again.

I worry about you. You know I do. I know that sometimes you feel like I’m never around or that I’ve even left. You get so scared that I’ve left that you resort to that habit, to pretending nothing’s wrong to bring me back. I swear to you I haven’t left you, I never will. I will always, always, always come back. You have come such a long way from where you are. You know what it’s like to lose me. You know what it’s like to be trapped in the darkest of places. That’s not you anymore. You’re out, you’re in the light, and I’m here for you.

Love always,

The Happy You

What you and I are doing right now is a surprising lot. Maybe you look down at yourself and this desk or couch or bed you’ve been sitting at as you idly browse the internet. Maybe you chuckle to yourself and your break from working on something and think “no I’m not.”

But you are. You and I right now are living. We are life. We are living organisms. At the very heart of it all you and I really need to do is live. We need do little more than the basic function of a cell. We need to take in some source of energy and use it to keep us alive. But here you are. You’re using a bright piece of machinery. Energy hums throughout. All around you the noise of life is buzzing. Some light overhead, maybe the noise of people around you or outside. Everyone is moving about, doing things. They, you, I, we’re all living. But we’re doing much more than that aren’t we?

We humans are so strange. We have redefined what living is. It isn’t taking in a source of energy and breathing and doing the bare minimum to keep ourselves alive. It’s not about staying alive for us anymore, it’s not about just surviving. It’s LIVING.

Running jumping swimming laughing hugging kissing dancing acting playing thinking reading singing imagining listening watching waiting crying dreaming hoping wishing loving interpreting solving planning wondering asking answering teaching sharing growing taking leaving we do all of these things because we can, because we want to, because they’re there to do.