Member Spotlight #27: Ask The Man anything

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#1
In this forum tradition we give a specific member a thread for a week in which they can share whatever information they want about themselves, then answer whatever questions the public asks them. It's sort of an expansion on the "Let's get to know each other" thread by, well, giving one member the spotlight. More information on the concept can be found here.

This week's participant is [member=9]The Man[/member], who has elected to share the following information:
Family: Parents still together. Grandparents all dead. Two aunts, two uncles, several cousins, no siblings, one dog.
Sexuality: Almost exclusively gynephile (i.e., attracted to women). Describing myself as "heterosexual" is problematic; see next response.
Gender: Complicated. I generally identify somewhere somewhere between "male" and "female" (sometimes referred to as "genderqueer" or other terms), but some days I'm more likely to feel like I don't have any gender identity whatsoever ("agender"). I guess this would also make me gender-fluid, although unlike many such individuals I don't bounce between feeling exclusively male and feeling exclusively female. Regardless, I'm certainly transgender, which was not a fun realisation to come to at all. A lengthier description of my struggles with the issue can be found here.
Metaphysical views: Ignosticism. Furthermore, I submit that if a deity (or deities) existed, it/they would be beyond human comprehension. As for religious background, I was raised in Christianity but have Jewish ancestry as well and culturally identify with pieces of both religions as well as pieces of various Eastern religions (Zen, Taoism) and even weird Western things like Discordianism. I'd probably be identified as a "Jew of no religion" in one of those Pew surveys. To summarise my stances briefly, we don't know, and we can't know, at least within the current scope of human knowledge, but I see no credible evidence to speculate in favour of the existence of anything supernatural. That said, I try to follow many teachings of a number of religious figures, like Jesus, Buddha, Lao-Tzu, and Tolstoy, but I'm horrendously bad at it.
Political views: Anarchism/libertarian socialism. A lot of my stances on U.S. politics as of two years ago are outlined here. They haven't changed much; I've been anarchist for around ten years now, and find it unlikely that my overarching world view will shift substantially, although my stances on individual issues may alter as new information crosses my path or as new developments occur in world politics. To summarise my stances briefly, governments are at best a necessary evil and at worst an intolerable one, and people work best when they work for themselves. Government protection is currently necessary only so far as it keeps us from abusing one another or the environment or from being severely abused by misfortune or ignorance (and should not be necessary forever), and corporations should be abolished and replaced with worker-directed syndicates. An excellent introduction to anarchism can be found at TV Tropes.
Employment: Currently I work retail, but I'm handing in my two weeks' notice tomorrow, in part to focus more on my studies and in part because I hated my job and was on the verge of getting fired. They would have been out of line to do so and I could've gotten a disabled advocate to challenge them, but it would've probably resulted in a hostile work environment, and it just seems like too much trouble for a job I didn't like in the first place.
Psychological issues: I'm on the obsessive-compulsive and autistic spectrums. I also suffer from ADHD and sporadic depression, the latter of which is likely caused by these issues and my gender issues.
Goals, in no particular order:
  • Self-actualisation/self-sufficiency/finding fulfilling work.
  • Finding a way to have a functional relationship with my cocktail of psychological problems.
  • Educating the masses.
  • Finishing my degree.
  • Revolution.
Miscellaneous interests:
  • Music. For listening I'm particularly partial to progressive rock, metal, and soundtracks. I also have interests in the production end and in ripping and collecting vinyl (the last of which I am too broke for these days), and I also play piano and write my own music.
  • Fiction (particularly science fiction and fantasy) - books and television are the media that typically have the largest impacts on me.
  • My tastes in games tend towards the old school, though I am blown away by the Wii U Zelda. Super Metroid is probably objectively the greatest game of all time, and this isn't nostalgia talking because I first played it in 2011. Subjectively, it's tied for first with FFVI (which is also an objectively great game, and which I also played long after it came out) on my list of Favourite Games Ever.
Obligatory Final Fantasy section:
  • I've only played about half of the numbered entries in the Final Fantasy series enough to evaluate them. I'd rank them VI, IX, V, VII, IV, X. (Which isn't to say that I dislike X - I wouldn't have finished it or done all the monster arena stuff if I disliked it - but it has greater flaws than the rest of them. There are also some days where I'd swap the placement of V and IX on my list, and ditto for IV and VII). This is roughly how I would rank the soundtracks as well, although I might swap my ranking of VII's and V's.
  • The only major weakness of FFVI is the battle system, which is inferior to that of several other games in the series (though also by no means the weakest in the series). Other than that, it is by far the best of the games in the series I've played.
  • FFV has far and away the best battle system of the main numbered entries.
  • I feel that the Compilation of FFVII and endless parade of Ultimania-related material has in many ways degraded some of the original appeal of FFVII. A large part of the original appeal of the game was that a lot of it was ambiguous and open to interpretation. Now every last detail of the plot has been indexed in exhaustive detail and there is no room left for individual interpretation. Much of what made FFVII unique in the series has been squeezed away, which makes me wonder if the writers at Square even understood the appeal of their own product. While I would still rank FFVII's quality about as highly as I did when I first played it, the amount of enjoyment I get out of the game has decreased substantially.
  • I also think FFVII would have been a much more interesting game if Shinra was the main antagonist. The opening sequence of the game in Midgar is one of the most flawless portions of a video game I have ever played. In general, the further the story diverges from the themes established in the opening of the game, the less interesting I find it.
Other miscellaneous stuff:
  • I dated [member=339]Selphie Tilmitt[/member] for close to three years several years before this forum was a thing. We are possibly meeting up again in the summer but I don't know if this means anything romantic will be happening. Probably not; I can't speak for her, but I'm too emotionally damaged.
  • I have been celibate for several years, which seems to bother other people a lot more than it bothers me these days. I've sort of come to accept it. Being transgender makes it a bit difficult to find romance.
  • I also have my own forum, Fool's Gold, although it is closed and will likely remain so until my life is less of a mess (or until the other staff are ready to run it without my assistance). I also post on two other forums called Freethought Forum and Eyes on Final Fantasy. I would recommend the former of these to almost anyone but I am not sure I can recommend the latter in its current state. I also adminned FFOF back before it died, and for those of you who knew me back in the ACF days I was a global mod there towards the end. I also adminned a bunch of other communities none of you probably care about (except maybe FCF), most of which are merged into FG as archives now (including FCF).
  • I used to be really interested in game design. I designed my own levels for Mario games with pencil and paper and later started building a scenario for Marathon that I will probably never finish because my ambition far exceeded my grasp. I still would like to create more games, but I simply don't have the time for such a large undertaking.
  • I still have some ideas for a fantasy novel I may write if I ever figure out a way to organise the noise in my head.
  • My signature and avatar are from a game of Tomodachi Life that a friend on Eyes on Final Fantasy ran. The curly-haired afro dude is meant to represent me (although my Mii in the game was a bit of a dick). I have a rotating signature image because I couldn't pick one image as my favourite. The large circle image with me up in the air includes, clockwise from left, Miss Mae (forum member), Jinx (forum member), Hanji (Attack on Titan), Helena (Orphan Black), Newmani (forum member), Lonely Paper Star (forum member), Christmas (forum member), and Lightning (Final Fantasy XIII). The circle around the heart-shaped flower field includes, clockwise from top left, fire_of_avalon (forum member), Helena, Lonely Paper Star, noxious.sunshine (Cher Horowitz here), maybee, Fufu/Fujiko (forum member), Quistis (FFVIII), and Miss Mae. This should give away who is in all the other images as well (though it's usually PaperStar or Helena).
Incomplete lists of some stuff I like: (more complete lists can be found in my profile)
  • Authors: Douglas Adams; Isaac Asimov; William Blake; Roberto Bolaño; Jorge Luis Borges; Neil Gaiman; Aldous Huxley; Ursula K. Le Guin; Madeleine L'Engle; George R. R. Martin; China Miéville; Alan Moore; Grant Morrison; George Orwell; Terry Pratchett; Thomas Pynchon; Kim Stanley Robinson; J. K. Rowling; William Shakespeare; Kurt Vonnegut; Robert Anton Wilson.
  • Films: 12 Monkeys; Amélie; Blade Runner; Blazing Saddles; The Big Lebowski; District 9; Dr. Strangelove; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly; Gravity; High Fidelity; Inception; Kill Bill; Kung Fu Hustle; Life of Brian; Monty Python and the Holy Grail; Network; Pan's Labyrinth; The Prestige; Pulp Fiction; Serenity; Seven Samurai; This Is Spinal Tap; Up; The Usual Suspects; Wall-E.
  • Shows: Agent Carter; Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.; Archer; Arrested Development; Battlestar Galactica; The Blacklist; Doctor Who; Firefly; Futurama; Game of Thrones; Last Week Tonight with John Oliver; Lost; Mad Men; Monty Python's Flying Circus; Orphan Black; Scandal; Sherlock; first ten or so seasons of The Simpsons (though I still enjoy scattered episodes beyond this); True Detective; The West Wing; The Wire.
  • Music: too many to list. Godspeed You! Black Emperor is my all-time favourite. My last.fm is probably the most reliable source of information about my taste, though you might want to look at my top 100 rather than my top 50 for a fully accurate picture. Additionally, both my last 12 months' charts and my overall charts are worth perusing, and the charts on the right (which display artists sorted by length spent listening) are more indicative of my taste than the official last.fm charts.
  • Video games: Bubble Bobble; Chrono Cross; Chrono Trigger; Dragon Quest V; Final Fantasy V; Final Fantasy VI; Final Fantasy IX; The Legend of Zelda; A Link to the Past; Marathon trilogy; NetHack; Seiken Densetsu 3; Suikoden II; Super Mario All-Stars; Super Mario World; Super Metroid; Yoshi's Island; Tetris. I also enjoy ROM hacks and third-party game mods a lot, and I enjoy watching tool-assisted speedruns, including tool-assisted speedruns of ROM hacks. If I had more free time I might even consider learning how to make some of my own.
Feel free to ask whatever you'd like. This thread will be up for approximately a week before we move onto our next participant. :monster:
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#4
Why did you have to have the longest information post? :monster:
Because I never write one word when two thousand will do :monster:

^Because he's Aaron. :monster:

Favorite season of "The Wire"?
Tough question. Seasons one, three, and four are all strong contenders, though there's really nothing wrong with two or five either. I'm planning on re-watching the series in HD and I'll probably be able to give a solid answer after doing that.
 
AKA
Jason Tandro, Doc Brown, Santa Christ, FearAddict, Thibault Stormrunner, RN: Micah Rodney
#5
1) As a fellow lover of FFV, I have to know: What's your favorite Job(s) in that game?

2) Do you write/ have you written any fanfiction (even if you didn't put it online anywhere)?
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#6
1) As a fellow lover of FFV, I have to know: What's your favorite Job(s) in that game?
It's been awhile since I played, but probably Mime. Geomancer was also lots of fun.

2) Do you write/ have you written any fanfiction (even if you didn't put it online anywhere)?
I wrote some poetry/song lyrics inspired by, I want to say, FFIV, but no actual fiction. I have no idea if they're still online. They may still be on Eyes on Final Fantasy, but I don't have them myself.
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#8
Are you ever going to put your music on youtube or something that I can actually open with my oldasfuck Macintoshhh? :closedmonster:
If someone tells me how to put videos on YouTube, then sure :monster: I do have a soundcloud with my recent recordings, though, which is here. I probably won't put my old compositions up on there because I only have so much space.
 

Octo

KULT OF KERMITU
AKA
Octo, Octorawk, Clarky Cat, Kissmammal2000
#9
If you had to choose between having legs or having arms which would you choose and why? :monster:
 

The G'randiest' Daddy

Teh Bunneh of Doom
AKA
Darth
#10
Favourite non-FF game?

Favourite non-FF world to live in?

Early to bed, or late sleeper?

You're convicted of a crime you didn't commit and sentenced to death, what are your last words, last person you ask to see, and last meal?
 

Carlie

CltrAltDelicious
AKA
Chloe Frazer
#11
Tough question. Seasons one, three, and four are all strong contenders, though there's really nothing wrong with two or five either. I'm planning on re-watching the series in HD and I'll probably be able to give a solid answer after doing that.
I would say for me is either 1 or 3. Season 2 is good but the Docks just aren't as interesting of a storyline as the Barksdale's storyline except for the Greek. Season 4 is also really good but while Marlo is definitely way more evil than Avon, Stringer or Prop Joe combined and a total sociopath, his crew just ain't as interesting or memorable as Barksdale's. Season 5 is easily the weakest season for me. The focus on the Baltimore Sun came off at times as more of an excuse for David Simon to air dirty laundry and Gus Haynes is very obviously his author avatar and came off as a Mary Sue.

I'm guessing Bunny Colvin is your favorite character so what's your opinion on Hamsterdam?
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#12
If you had to choose between having legs or having arms which would you choose and why? :monster:
Probably arms, because I wouldn't be able to type or play piano without them :monster:

Favourite non-FF game?
Super Metroid.

Favourite non-FF world to live in?
Star Trek. Or maybe this one.

Early to bed, or late sleeper?
Late sleeper, for sure. Unfortunately I've been forced to get up early for most of the last several years.

You're convicted of a crime you didn't commit and sentenced to death, what are your last words, last person you ask to see, and last meal?
Last words: Probably a rant about how capital punishment is stupid.

Last person I ask to see: Probably a hooker. Especially if we're talking about right now, considering how long it's been since I got laid.

Last meal: I'd probably go for a steak and shoestring French fries from Ruth's Chris, with a couple of chocolate chip cookies to top it all off.

I would say for me is either 1 or 3. Season 2 is good but the Docks just aren't as interesting of a storyline as the Barksdale's storyline except for the Greek. Season 4 is also really good but while Marlo is definitely way more evil than Avon, Stringer or Prop Joe combined and a total sociopath, his crew just ain't as interesting or memorable as Barksdale's. Season 5 is easily the weakest season for me. The focus on the Baltimore Sun came off at times as more of an excuse for David Simon to air dirty laundry and Gus Haynes is very obviously his author avatar and came off as a Mary Sue.

I'm guessing Bunny Colvin is your favorite character so what's your opinion on Hamsterdam?
It's either him or Omar, yes. Hamsterdam is an excellent idea that should be put into practice IRL. Countries like Portugal have actually done similar things with great success.

I can agree with most of what you said about the seasons.
 

Sprites

Waiting for something
AKA
Gemma, Gems
#13
Where do you go or what do you do when you need to clear your head?

Where is your favourite place in the world to visit or if you haven't yet, where would you like to go?

What's you favourite food?

What's your favourite beverage hot and cold?
 

Octo

KULT OF KERMITU
AKA
Octo, Octorawk, Clarky Cat, Kissmammal2000
#14
As a person of Jewish ancestry, where do you stand on the ol' circumcision?
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#15
Where do you go or what do you do when you need to clear your head?
I generally just listen to music.

Where is your favourite place in the world to visit or if you haven't yet, where would you like to go?
Of places I've been, I quite liked Venice and London, and, of course, Washington, D.C. Of places I haven't been, Amsterdam, Oslo, Copenhagen, Reykjavik, Stockholm, and Helsinki would have to top the list.

What's your favourite food?
Probably either pizza or cookies (chocolate chip and varieties with lots of mint in them are probably the top choices there). I also like quite a wide variety of soups, as well as chili. And the old standby of chicken nuggets isn't bad either.

What's your favourite beverage hot and cold?
I can't think of any hot beverages I really like. My favourite cold beverages are orange juice and lemonade. Root beer and milk are pretty good too.

As a person of Jewish ancestry, where do you stand on the ol' circumcision?
It hasn't exactly stopped me from enjoying sex, but I sort of wonder if I'd have enjoyed it more if I weren't circumcised. I'm kind of indifferent though, which might be slightly strange because I've seen people get into horrific flame wars over it. I just can't find it in myself to care that much.
 
#16
What is your favourite nut and/or legume?

What surprising major events do you predict will almost certainly happen in the next 100 years?
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#17
What is your favourite nut and/or legume?
I don't really have one. I'm allergic to quite a few of them, and to be honest I never remember which ones they are so I just avoid nuts altogether. I do remember I'm allergic to cashews, but that's it.

What surprising major events do you predict will almost certainly happen in the next 100 years?
Surprising? I don't know if I can think of anything surprising that's likely to happen. We're likely to continue destroying our habitat and causing the extinctions of untold numbers of species. It's likely that the sea levels will continue to rise and substantial parts of the world will be flooded. It's quite likely that significant parts of the non-flooded areas will be rendered uninhabitable by climate change. It's entirely possible that we'll suffer a catastrophic food shortage by spoiling most of the arable land.

So yeah. Cheery stuff. Maybe there'll be a revolution before things get too bad, or people will organise to overthrow the world economic system through more peaceful means, but I wouldn't count on it.

Of course, this might just be the depression speaking.
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#19
What other sporting events (besides the Super Bowl) do you pay attention to?
I watch baseball sometimes (basically whenever a restaurant I'm in has a game on, and sometimes during the playoffs), and I paid cursory attention to the World Cup the last time it was going on. I can't really describe myself as much of a sports aficionado anymore though, although I used to be absolutely obsessed with baseball when I was younger.
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#21
If you feel like it, sure, but you don't have to before asking more questions if you don't want to :monster: If I already answered them I'll just quote the relevant part or whatever :monster:
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#22
Okay, I'll finish it.

How long did that take to write? Have you been working on it on and off in preparation for your turn at bat or did you do not do it until your turn came up?

Did you send yourself a PM reminding you it was your turn and asking yourself for a write-up? :awesome:
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#23
How long did that take to write?
I probably worked on it for a couple of hours all told.

Have you been working on it on and off in preparation for your turn at bat or did you do it when your turn came?
I'd written most of it up several months ago for Eyes on Final Fantasy and Fool's Gold (both of which had similar events to this one, but EoFF's has concluded as I've gone through everyone on the list of participants who responded and FG is currently closed) and then just revised it where relevant for this one (and updating the bits that had changed). I think I may have started writing it a couple of weeks before I had my turn on whichever event was first, but I can't remember.

Did you send yourself a PM reminding you it was your turn and asking yourself for a write-up? :awesome:
Nah, couldn't be arsed. :monster:
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#24
Whose write-up was your favorite?

Do you think our AMA tradition will continue much longer? Should we start it all over when we get to the end of the listed volunteers?
 

The Man

Great Old One
AKA
Aaron
#25
Whose write-up was your favorite?
I'd have to read them all again, to be honest.

Do you think our AMA tradition will continue much longer?
There are still three months' worth of additional volunteers, so I mean, that's kind of long.

Should we start it all over when we get to the end of the listed volunteers?
Might as well. I didn't bother doing this at EoFF, but I like you guys a lot more than I like them :monster:
 
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