new years 2021

posting random images to break up the amount of text

Hello. I took a week off for the holidays, but now I’m back. Just wanted to do a big year in review post this time. I’ll get back to games soon enough; look forward to me talking about the PS2 game “Michigan.”

2020 was a strange, complicated year. It was terrible for numerous reasons both big and small. Yet, on a personal level, was also really good? Feel like breaking all of it down to try and make some sense of things.

Let’s start with all the bad shit. A killer virus that ravaged the world’s population and, as far as the US is concerned, will still be a major problem for some time to come. The continued escalation of police and politicians abusing their authority, mostly at the expense of the marginalized. Watching, over and over, as so many amazingly talented trans artists were harassed to hell and back, ultimately driven out of public life; the fact that we see the name “Isabel Fall” as a cautionary tale of what happens when Keeping It Real Goes Wrong instead of an awesome new author to keep an eye out for continues to disgust me. Having to hear about something called “Blaseball” for months on end. Just terrible, horrible shit all around.

On a games-related level, because this is a gaming blog kind of, there was a lot of shit to deal with there, too. I admit that I let the Cyberpunk bullshit get under my skin and ruin my mood, but I think it’s at least a little bit understandable? It was an overhyped piece of shit that barely worked, exploited its employees to an unacceptable degree, appealed directly to the worst kind of people imaginable through its advertising, punched down on people of color and trans women, cast cops and billionaires in a heroic light, to the point of literally featuring Elon Musk as a character. Oh yeah, and it had a scene that was designed to literally give you a seizure. And, as I had predicted, games writers were willing to cast aside any semblance of dignity to try and wring out any degree of enjoyment they could get out of it, at the expense of literally every leftist belief they purport to have. Then you had another game: some shitty looking horror game walking sim made by an idiot who thinks you’re a privileged white dude for wanting games to be less buggy, transphobic, not made in toxic working conditions, or not literally try to kill you via a series of flashing lights, and his co-dev, who came into my blog’s comments section back in 2017 and made thinly-veiled threats about my “friends and family” while one of my closest friends just so happened to be her roommate at the time. Having to see that bullshit on everyone’s Game of the Year list was an exercise in biting my tongue and not wanting to put a hole in the fucking wall. You’ll find me playing Cyberpunk before I put down the three bucks or whatever for “what if Silent Hill sucked and had graphics that looked like the Harry Potter Playstation games?”

On a personal level, I was having mobility issues for a while. I’ve had issues with my knees for several years now, and I probably have a 50/50 shot of catching Neuropathy when I’m older, a condition where the nerves in my legs will slowly die, taking away my ability to walk without assistance, if even at all. Having my dog and my grandfather die pretty close to one another sucked too. I’ve never had much of a family, biologically speaking, and as time goes on, it gets smaller and smaller. Spent a lot of time these last several months thinking about mortality.

Oh yeah, and some dickhead took the name “Slimegirl” and decided to be a sex pest with it. Given that that’s the name of the title character in the game I’ve been working on, and that the plot was an allegory for the way trans people are treated like absolute dog shit by society, labeled predators for the slightest thing, it’s probably a bad idea to continue that path when there’s an actual “Slimegirl” (in quotes because fuck that guy, Slimegirl is my creation) who is allegedly being a predator for real.

But what about the good stuff? 2020 wasn’t all hiding from a respiratory illness, death, video game grudges, and continuing to be blamed for everything that’s ever gone wrong in cis people’s lives.

First, holy fuck, my art got a lot better. I’ve been looking at stuff I’ve been making over years, even 2019, and comparing it to 2020, and it’s like night and day.

Like, look at that. That sucks. This was from 2018.

So was this.

And this.

I think you get the point. I was not making good stuff.

Let’s look at 2020.

Much better. I guess if the creator of Space Funeral is hitting “like” on some of these, I must be on the right track.

2020 was the first time since 2008 where I started making poetry. I was honestly surprised that it took off the way it did. Didn’t imagine anyone would actually like it; maybe some pity clicks. But no, it turned out to be well received!

If it sound like I’m bragging here, well…I am! I am absolutely going to brag about myself in this post. This was a year where I improved drastically as a person. I, with a few missteps here and there, got a better hold of my Bipolar mood swings and PTSD-fueled meltdowns. I’m continuing to win my battle against addiction. I got better at art. I got better at fighting games, holding my own with and even beating tournament winners. I got better at streaming, back when I was still doing that (working/grieving/being sick/Twitch technical issues took the wind of those sails). I got into the sport of auto racing, and went for a ride on the emotional rollercoaster of F1’s 2020 season, in addition to looking into IMSA, IndyCar, Super Formula and Super GT. I had a really fucking good birthday. Managed to mostly keep a weekly update on this blog. Lots of great music and games came out. I met a whole bunch of new friends that I’m really grateful for. Got back in touch with older friends that I was a bit worried about, but I’m glad that things aren’t as catastrophic as they were in 2015 and The Band is back together. Even with all the fucked up shit that went down in 2020, I can’t bring myself to say that it was a bad year, when a lot of good things happened.

2020 was the transition point. A year where I took steps in becoming something great. When you grow up constantly being told that you are worthless and will never amount to anything, you tend to spend your adulthood proving everyone wrong and become something. I’m going to go ahead and predict that 2021 will be the year where I actually become something. Hopefully, you all will, too.

Happy New Year!

2 thoughts on “new years 2021”

  1. Ramona, this was a really nice read, despite the bad and frustrating things you experienced. The art comparison is amazing! And the way you’re looking back at 2020 kinda made me go “hey, a lot of stuff sucked, but it truly wasn’t all bad for me, either”, and it’s nice to have that. It’s easy to fall into the brain’s “NO everything is AWFUL because of THIS THIS AND THIS” trap.

    So thanks for inadvertently giving me a good think, and here’s to a new year full of possibilities!

    1. Thanks! I’m glad that you were able to think about all the good things that happened to you. I know that there’s such a thing as “toxic positivity,” but it’s still to remember the good stuff, you know? Hoping your year is going to be awesome, too, because I think you deserve it.

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