November 12th, 2018
Let’s Play Some Games
One of the toughest things about maintaining this blog has always been content creation. It’s not so much the creation as much as it is a combination of making time to do so and battling the overwhelming urge to stop myself because of views or perception. History shows I have had numerous false starts and cancelled features despite a large buildup to generate buzz and interest. If you’ve never done something like this before then you are missing out on the rollercoaster of emotions that comes with putting your heart into something and then having it go over mildly. This year has been no exception to that roller coaster but I have persevered.
I should clarify that my intentions here are not to get famous and quit my day job. In the past I would have loved to have hit it big like Phillip DeFranco and other personalities of the time. Instead I’ve geared this version of the site to being more of a spot people might end up for interesting articles or takes on the world based on tags and keyword searches. So far, I think that has been a successful format and a lot healthier for me. On a personal note, maintaining this site is a double edged sword for me. I’ve consciously decided to remove things like Instagram and Facebook from my phone because they actually depress me. I still find myself getting obsessive about traffic and return visits here but more than ever this is the therapeutic release I need to just clear my head. And if you read these, THANK YOU.
One of my favorite ways to clear my head since a young age has been to play video games. I come by it honestly too, I come from a family of card players, board gamers, and video gamers. Competition is in my blood. To combine my love for writing and gaming I decided in the Spring that I wanted to replay a list of my favorite titles from my childhood, adolescent, and young adult life. This involved a months-long process of hunting for games at various resale shops, comparing prices, and obsessing over a goal to create a solid stream of content for late 2018 and early 2019. I’m pleased to announce that tomorrow, the 13th, marks the start of the Gaming Nostalgia Series. I’m hopeful that a few of the titles I’ve picked are also some that are special to my regular readers as well, but the prospect of sharing some oddities is also a driving force behind my decision to begin the series. An incomplete list of titles is available at the link above, and I am still taking suggestions for games you want me to play!
There is no clear timeline in place for content there but it is my hope to publish two articles a month. The list is only getting longer as suggestions and my own research turn up more and more titles to check out. There is also the business of my secret gaming project as well, hoping to have that published for you next month.
If we don’t talk again before the end of the month, I hope that all my US readers have a wonderful Thanksgiving and that my international friends are getting into the holiday spirit. I challenge everyone to take some time before the end of the year, dig out an older favorite title of their own, and enjoy their own nostalgia.
September 19th, 2018
The Changing Light
Something I’ve made a yearly remark about for over a decade is that time in early-to-mid September when the light during the day changes. Maybe it is the noticeable tilt away from the sun, maybe it is a change in the way the leaves reflect the sun as they begin to undergo seasonal changes, or maybe it’s just my imagination.
Whatever it is, the changing of the light is here and that signals the start of Fall.
It has been an eventful Summer despite the hot and dry conditions for many of those peak days. We found time to schedule some adventures, and even make a spontaneous trip to Traverse City with the little one. Last weekend, my brother got married (finally!), and now we are settling in for the steady march toward falling leaves, a second birthday, and the Holiday Season.
This time of year also means the revival of content here, which excites me after months of gathering, planning, and exploring new hobbies. I still have not returned to painting Hot Wheels cars. This would have been the perfect time to hone my painting skills while the weather was warm, but instead I elected to share my treasure trove of collected cars with the little one and play with them instead! Perhaps I’ll have time to paint once we are trapped inside again.
MCsquared Tech had a busy year despite the silence on social media. Scrap prices are down, but that hasn’t stopped me from making a few e-scrap runs, as well as the continued trash night runs for discarded electronics. The ‘road map to saving the world’ that I mentioned in my last update is still very much under construction. Just last night I worked with the Mrs. to organize some bigger projects and decide how to take baby steps toward some very ambitious goals. Hurricane season still drives a huge portion of my thought process, and this year has not left me wanting following the news continued news from Puerto Rico, and the crazy week leading up to Florence in the Carolinas. If you’re on the edge of your seat for details, the wait continues. I can tell you that it fills an entire three-inch ring binder and is about to spill into another!
My primary focus this Summer actually centered around the weekly hunt for old Playstation and Playstation 2 games to complete lists for later content. As I’ve mentioned before, I plan to restart the Gaming Nostalgia series with some replays of old titles I grew up with, as well as a still-secret project that I’ll reveal soon. I’ve never been a collector of hard to find materials before, and this was an adventure I might have to chronicle later. After months of hunting, price comparing, waiting, and driving the Mrs. nuts I’ve secured almost all of the titles I need to create some new content. Hopefully we can all learn a little something about what I consider to be the greatest couple of years in modern gaming. The schedule is still coming together for MCsquared Gaming, but it is my hope to have a first series of replays and articles released before the end of October and then continue to churn out content through the Winter.
For now, let’s all enjoy the colors and activities that come with the changing of the light. I hope that you had a great Summer, and that your Fall season takes its time as we begin to close out another year.
May 22nd, 2018
Content Planning for 2018
With all of the dust just about clear on the latest site renovations, I’m pleased to be able to move on with new content at long last. If you’ve been around for a while then you know I’m infamous for doing an update then walking away until the next update. I cringe as I recall “Cooking with MC2”; all the hours spent developing it and designing for it just to scrap the whole thing when I dropped out of culinary school. Surely not a collection of my finest moments, but already I’m pleased with the pre-planning I’ve completed for 2018. Let’s all cross our fingers!
Saving the World
MCsquared Tech is in full swing as the warmer season finally arrived. Weekly trash-night drives, hunting for electronic treasures and machines have resumed. I’m pleased to announce I have a healthy stock of items to be reintroduced into the world via Goodwill and other outreach services, as well as a growing bin of scrap material to be recycled. As always, your contributions help to keep hazardous materials and repairable devices out of landfills and back into service.
Warmer weather also means the return of hurricane season, something that Michigan may not be overly concerned about but those living on the coast are certainly watching closely. According to the Office for Coastal Management, the cumulative cost of the 2017 hurricane season in the US was over $306 billion making it the most costly season on record. Despite only experiencing these storms secondhand through pictures and video, the 2017 season inspired me to evaluate what I could offer to disaster relief through my own work. What can be done to ensure proper, eco-friendly storm cleanup? What options exist for mobile water and power distribution? How could these services be delivered in a way that generates income but offers essential services at the cheapest price possible? I’ve been working on answers, and a road map, for a little while and I hope that I can share that in the months to come.
MCsquared Gaming – a working title
One of the biggest additions to the site is actually a return item, I’ve resurrected the “gaming” portion of the site and have plans to do a series picking up where an old article left off. Gaming Nostalgia is well into the preparatory phase as I continue to buy old games, pair them off for features, and locate additional titles for future work. I never saw myself being a collector of any one thing, but as I look back I can clearly see the markers of a used video game hoarder. Sure, I’ve parted with some over the years, but recently I’ve accumulated more Playstation 1 and early 2000’s PC titles than I feel comfortable admitting. It’s a really good thing the average price per title in the last month has been under $5 otherwise I’d need a new place to live! You can read more about this under the Other Projects tab.
Lastly, MCsquared Customs is still alive, I swear. I’ve hit some pretty major snags in my painting and I’ve had to return to the classroom until I get that under control. In summary, second coats of paint are pulling up or cracking the primer and first coat. Hopefully I’ll have some pic updates for Instagram in the coming weeks once I work out the issues. I’ve also acquired an airbrush from a family member, I’ll have some time to clean and get familiar with that very soon!
If you haven’t taken a tour of the new pages and sections yet, take a look and leave me some feedback. I’ll be posting one or two of these updates a month as I get more ready for release. Tech is always getting love and updates, and Gaming should see steady content as we enter the fall and cooler months.
We will talk again in June. If you’re headed outside be sure to wear sunscreen!
May 1st, 2018
A Much Needed Upgrade
I’ve elected to do some formatting updates to the site, some of it long overdue. As I continue to expand the projects associated with MCsquared Tech and expand on some other new adventures, it’s becoming clear that I need to combine all of the social media accounts on one platform for visibility and let the reader venture off to the right place. Was that enough word salad for anyone else?
In April I started a new hobby with Hot Wheels and Matchbox customs; stripping off original paint and redoing them with my own designs. It’s a bit of quiet work that gets me thinking creatively and away from a screen for a couple of hours a week. You can follow that project under Other Projects > MCsquared Customs and on its Instagram account, I’ve linked it in the connect widget on the sidebar. It’s a slow burn with that project, the lack of dedicated work space means I am working out of our laundry room with fans moving air around. I’ll have some updates on individual cars and the process soon.
I’m also talking with the Mrs. about a new video game feature that her and I could start rolling out intermittently. I’ve recently dove back into older games, similar to a posting I did a while ago with Star Wars: Dark Forces, and I’d like to continue with that format. Hopefully we can work out the timing and content we’d like to start working on this Summer and roll out a series of articles or videos in the fall when we come back inside. Related to this, I’m working on a Let’s Play style channel for some of the games I’ve been enjoying to this point. No more spoilers for now, I’ll get some content worked on when the weather gets rainy or cold again.
Finally, I’ve started to consolidate the pages for MCsquared Tech into one area. I’m fighting with formatting at the moment, but in the coming days I hope that everything will fall under one page header with a couple of sub-pages in a drop down menu. As that project grows I’ll be using this site as the headquarters for thoughts and goals. Check back often if you’re interested!
Here’s hoping it’s warm where you are, Michigan is having its first 80 degree day this year. I’m off to enjoy it!