Le hiatus bonne. [The good hiatus]

February 10, 2013 § Leave a comment

You’ll notice that B&B hasn’t updated recently.

All the writers decided to take a break all at once and locked themselves out. So we’re on a teeny, tiny hiatus that’s lasted almost a year now. 

We’ll see you soon though. 

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Into the Woods

July 13, 2012 § 10 Comments

Tom Bissell’s Magic Hours and Anna Anthropy Rise of the Videogame Zinesters.
by Matthew Rickart

I. Explaining your game-tapes.

There may be nothing more difficult than writing well about the experience of playing a video game – other than, perhaps, finding an original and satisfactory Fathers’ Day gift. Film and reading are about perception; gaming is about experience. To make matters worse, the vocabulary to describe why Mario doesn’t come to a dead stop when you cease to press the right directional button but instead slides into a halt is either a) esoteric or b) not even culturally established enough to really exist.[1]

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Site News (ID4 EDITION)

July 4, 2012 § 2 Comments

Dear readers,

You may have noticed that over the past two months our weekly production has dropped from two stories to an incredibly lonely one.

The ravages of moving, working, ennui, Alzheimer’s, hand cramps, tennis elbow, gasoline fume fatigue, at least one case of sex addiction,[1] and two missing AA batteries for the Wiimote have taken their toll, and we would like to apologize for that.

However, we also come bearing good news, which we will divide into two sections despite the brevity of this post, because we are nothing if not consistent.

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Low-Bitrate, Infinite Replay

June 25, 2012 § 3 Comments

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Rx filled, court. Chelsea Drug Store
by Bob Dorff 

It doesn’t really look like this.

“You can’t always get what you want” is a line from a song. That song was written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards and was released on an album called Let It Bleed. You probably have this song on your computer’s hard drive, but it’s been stripped of all context. Rather than sitting alongside “Monkey Man” at the end of Let It Bleed’s second side, it languishes alone, misfiled because it was labeled as a song by “Rolling Stones” instead of “The Rolling Stones”. At one point you wanted to hear this song, having heard it as the background of a commercial on television. You typed the title into Limewire, and you had exactly what you wanted. It was convenient, it was clean, and took about 30 seconds. None of this interferes with the song’s quality, but I’ll be damned if it doesn’t make it hard to get the same sense of satisfaction that context and work provide.

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The Secret of the Bronzed Teenage Sleuth

June 18, 2012 § Leave a comment

The ups and downs and all-around appeal of Nancy Drew: Tomb of the Lost Queen

by Emily Dorff

Years ago, I enrolled in an art class to learn how to sculpt. The ultimate goal was to create a clay statue that would be cast in bronze. This prospect appealed to me because making a bronze seemed like a very serious artistic pursuit, and I imagined that my visionary, avant-garde sculpture would be the kind of impressive contemporary artwork to wow dinner guests far into the future.

“What’s this magnificent bronze resting upon your side table? A piece you picked up during the years you spent abroad, becoming culturally sensitive and acquiring that faraway look of melancholy in your eyes?”

I’d clear my throat, a blush creeping into my cheeks. “Ah, no; in fact, I made it myself, using only my two small hands and the untrained font of immense artistry I hold within me.”

Appreciative, somewhat awed silence would ensue, and then I would casually offer to refresh everyone’s drinks, knowing that everything had changed ever so slightly, and probably forever.

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As my ice cubes gently weep (into my whiskey)

June 11, 2012 § 3 Comments

feat. Max Payne 3

by Matthew Rickart

Fairly early in Rockstar’s Max Payne 3 the grizzled, eponymous hero is shot in the arm. It looks painful, like all the many, many bullet wounds that riddle the game, and as Max runs for cover, he narrates, “I had a hole in my second favorite drinking arm.”

This is the best part of the game.

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and I— / I took the one less traveled. Bi.

June 4, 2012 § Leave a comment

John Irving’s In One Person, a fairly straight-forward review that would probably score like a 1 and 1/3 on the Kinsey scale. 

by Matthew Rickart

The part where I talk about Irving.

Like the Billy Abbot, the narrator of John Irving’s thirteenth novel, and, I imagine, like the author himself, I too once sat down to read Great Expectations as a young person, and I too found it life altering, and I too thought it could have been improved by more sex.

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