My mood and general state of mind have gotten a lot better over the past couple of weeks. And it’s entirely due to getting back in contact with some old friends. People who I, and I’ll level with you here, have honestly been worried about off and on for the last few years. Hearing them all laugh and make jokes and have fun was a healing thing.
Now what does this have to do with games? That’s easy: we were all up until 4 in the morning playing The King of Fighters 2002. I don’t really recommend being up that late, especially when you’re old like I am. But if I’m going to be up that late, I’d rather it was because I was having fun playing video games, than being on Discord trying to convince someone that suicide isn’t the answer, you know?
Anyways, KOF 2002. It’s great. At least, the Ultimate Match version that we played. We got to play seriously. Then we goofed around. Then we (well, I) reminisced about playing KOF ROMs as a teenager, and really getting into the lore and well-drawn images of the pretty boy characters fucking. Also introducing my friend to DON’T BREAK MY SOUL WHOA WHOA TONIGHT
And Hazel, my friend, she’s no fucking slouch. She’s really fucking good at fighting games, actually. So it was pretty cool that I managed to hold my own and actually get a few wins. Now obviously, I wasn’t a super-stud laying the smack down, but I think I did alright.
Quick side note here: shout out to SNK for having games loaded with hot-ass pretty boys with well-defined abs. Your cheap AI annoys the fuck out of me when I try to play this shit single player, but I can at least admire the dudes.
Myself, Hazel, and Gabi, we all got together and did some lobbies in Skullgirls, as well.
I’m not very good at Skullgirls. I like to play as Beowulf, though, so I can annoy everyone with my immense knowledge of Pro Wrestling.
In any case, it was good to get back in contact with people I care about. I’ve been kinda stewing in my own mental illness on my own for the last few months, and that shit will drive you crazy. So to get pulled out of that is really great, and it’s led to me feeling pretty darn good. Think I might bother them for some more games soon.
Plus, nobody’s asking me to play any fucking Overwatch, thank fuck -_-
Normally, when I write entries like the one that I just did, I tend to get cold feet soon after and delete it. Mostly because I’m either worried about backlash, or even worse, some right-wing dipshit using my experiences as some piece of evidence in the never-ending trial of Idiots vs Feminism.
I will not be taking this one down. These are my thoughts. These are things that happened to me, and so I wrote them down on my web site which I own. If some craven opportunist wants to misinterpret it, that’s not my problem.
As far as my current mental state goes, it’s a little better. Finally getting all of that out and no longer internalizing it was helpful. Obviously, putting my emotions out there like that did hurt quite a bit, so I’m still in “recovery mode.” Trying to avoid the noise that the internet provides, keeping to myself as best I can. I’m finally home from this work bullshit Friday afternoon, so I can get back to doing cool things with my art tools. My next post, whenever that is, should be a bit higher in spirit than this. This was, like I said, something I needed to put out there, and now it is. For good this time.
I had a bit of a meltdown today that led to me finally just outright saying this: Zoe Quinn is an abuser. They are a liar, a manipulator, a racist, a TERF, and just a generally shady person. A side effect of me getting mad is that I foolishly made a Twitter thread about this; the exact opposite of “getting a blog.” So I’m going to post about it here.
Another problem is that I don’t have any hard proof. I used to have a series of private messages that would confirm a number of things I’ll be saying here. They disappeared when my previous Twitter account was mass reported to hell, and ultimately suspended, coincidentally, the last time I had planned on making my thoughts Zoe known. As a result, everything I’m going to say is now circumstantial. Whether you choose to believe me, I don’t really care. I’m not writing this because I want this to go viral, or because I am looking for internet clout, or some other stupid reason. I’m writing this because I am sick and tired. Sick and tired of having to keep all this private. Sick and tired of having to be looked at like I’m the asshole because I dared to say that the internet’s golden child is in fact, a shitty person.
I’m also sick and tired of every alt-right scumbag coming out of the woodwork and thinking that it’s okay to put their metaphorical arm around my shoulder as though we’re friends. To have these nazis fucks talk to me like one of their own. Like, “Yeah man, I’m with you! She’s a whore who fucked a bunch of guys for good game reviews and literally killed the Night in the Woods guy! You know, Joe? Or Fred? Or whatever his name is. I’m obviously very torn up about this!” My problems with Zoe are actually real, and not some made up bullshit that came because some incel on Youtube was mad about the titties in Dead or Alive being slightly smaller.
So let me get this all out of the way now: no, Zoe is not censoring your games. Zoe did not sleep around for positive reviews of Depression Quest. And no, Zoe is not at fault for Alec Howlowka’s suicide.
Zoe did, however, exploit the labor of transgender women. Zoe did lie and convince us all that any backlash they got from “Punk Games” was out of jealousy and transphobia, not because it was a garbage article that tried downplaying the work that people of color had put in to pull the indie games scene out of the dark ages of Jonathan Blow and other interchangeable white men with bad politics who thought they were too cool for Halo, in favor of promoting the work of two alleged sex predators. They and their friends used a series of coincidences, misunderstandings, and a couple of actually shitty people’s actions to do this. I mean, hey, who’s going around calling me a retard over something I didn’t even write? Certainly not this group of people suddenly appearing all at once to tell me that I’m good, and trying to get me fired up at some community I had literally never heard of prior to all of this!
And this is where the anger starts to kick in. I’m more angry at myself for this than anyone else. Because I let myself get lovebombed and ultimately be the shield for someone to escape any negative criticism that they’re a fucking racist asshole. I let myself be used. If you’ve never been in a situation that left you feeling exploited or betrayed, know that it fucking sucks. No matter what you do, or what anyone says, that guilt stays with you. It’s one thing to have a shitty friend, it’s another when you don’t realize that you’re being conditioned into becoming a cult member until it’s too late.
Something I had been thoroughly convinced of by Zoe and friends for so long was that a game dev by the name of Soha El-Sabaawi had created a Twitter blocklist designed to target trans women who were fooled into believing Ian Miles Cheong when he was still pretending to be a leftist, pre-Witcher 3. Now, I’ll be real with you, here: I’m not entirely sure if that’s a lie or not. All I know is, I was told that she hated trans people, then we’re all suddenly getting blocked by people in games I’ve never heard of, let alone ever interacted with. Maybe she really did come up with the first trans-centered mass blocklist. Or, maybe it was all bullshit to hide Randi Harper creating her own “anti-Gamergate” list that, you guess it, targeted trans women first and foremost.
But, I will say this, and give credit where it’s due: Soha and I, we’ll probably never be friends; too much shit has happened in the intervening years that I don’t see that as ever happening. However, she was dead fucking right in telling Zoe to fuck off all those years ago. I just wish I was smart enough to have realized that then.
I was not a member of Crash Override. However, I’ve been friends with a number of people who were. Every single one of them, even the ones that don’t even like each other, all say the same thing: that they were promised to be paid to sift through people’s death threats, image spam of gore and child pornography, and given nothing. No money, no support when Breitbart and 8chan and Kiwi Farms all came knocking on their doors. No support when Zoe’s game industry peers were going around calling them pedophiles, nazi sympathizers, and abusers. Just a post on their private twitter that they were “glad to be rid of people I never want to talk to again.” I should have taken a screenshot of that. And while I was not involved with Crash Override, I can tell you that Zoe privately messaged me to let me know that they were the only “employee” involved with the project. Nobody else, not even their partner at the time, was involved. Just Zoe, tirelessly fighting online harassment using such brave methods as “telling people to change their email passwords.” Zoe also told me something else through these DM’s, which I’ll get to later.
And by “later,” I mean “right now.” Zoe also lied to me about CO’s involvement with Randi Harper, and the shameless fraud that was the Online Abuse Prevention Initiative. There was NO association, I was told. They didn’t even like Randi! It was totally fucked up that she went off on some bigoted power trip, teaming up with message boards full of school shooters to dox trans women! Totally sucked that you got your own thread on Kiwi Farms because you told her and Wil Wheaton to go fuck themselves!
Well, we know what the truth was:
My personal info is posted online. I get an eyeful of society’s worst talking about wanting to kill me every day. I get to spend years worrying about whether or not the shit I’m dealing with will do any splash damage to the people in my life. I’ll spare you all the details of the full year I spent having a panic attack that one of my friends or partners would have to deal with their own doxxing thread.
And someone who I thought was a friend is off playing a shitty video game with the person responsible.
To say I was angry would be an understatement. I had spent the last couple months being told by my friends that they all got fucked over and ripped off doing Zoe’s “anti-abuse” work, and now here they are, rubbing their and my misfortune in our faces. Ironically enough, playing as a fucking healer, when all Zoe has done is hurt people. I let loose on Twitter, ranting and raving. Other people made their Medium posts about the shit they had dealt with (now deleted). And what happens next? Zoe lets everyone know not to “believe any conspiracy theories you may have heard,” and goes running off to everyone’s favorite transphobic sack of shit, Jesse Singal, to run defense.
Do you know how insulting it is to see your face on that asshole’s timeline? To have it captioned, “these are the people who want to reignite Gamergate,” straight up telling people that I became a neo-nazi because I got tired of Zoe Quinn’s bullshit? The man has twenty something thousand followers, and, despite any degree of common sense, still gets work in a number of publications. That’s a lot of people who saw a synonym for “bigot” labeled under my face. Fuck that.
And you know what? A problem with writing this? Why on Earth would you ever believe me, or anyone else who has come forward with their own horror stories? Like, who would you rather listen to: someone who, despite everything I’ve written, actually did and does deal with shitty harassment on a day-to-day basis, or a group of people that includes Ian Miles Cheong, Peter Coffin, a guy who was run offline after being outed a sex predator, and a group of autistic trans women who spent the last couple years getting into it with a community primarily made up of queer people of color? Of course you would go with the former! Why would you ever want to listen to me? I’m a white person who was utterly convinced that some Arab woman I’ve never met was some kind of anime supervillain with a grudge against anything outside the gender binary. There’s a paranoid part of me that thinks that was done by design. That we were all useful idiots for a con artist to make a few bucks. And now that Zoe got what they wanted, who gives a fuck? We’re all discredited. All people that you’ve been told never to believe or support. It’s perfect!
It makes me fucking sick to see someone try to show me whatever pity party Zoe is throwing today. Like they’re not stable enough with their Marvel money and book sales, while everyone who got strung along and left to eat shit are still barely clinging to life, even four years later. You know who’s a victim? The trans women you fucked over and left to pick up the pieces of their lives. You know who’s a victimizer? Zoe. I mean, yeah, I got left with PTSD and a complete inability to trust people and everyone thinks I’m a racist scumbag, but at least I didn’t lose my fucking home! I didn’t have ostensibly leftist people buy into right-wing horseshit that I’m a pedophile or a domestic abuser, despite demonstrable proof to the contrary, because someone with a platform refused to stick up for me because it was too inconvenient for their bank account. I got off fairly easily by comparison.
We were all nothing more than people who wanted to do the right thing. I can’t speak for everyone else, but I can tell you that I got involved because I was tired of right-wing assholes in my backyard (that backyard being “video games”). I was working on a group project a month before GG kicked off. Half the team left, in fear that they would be a target because of their own marginalized status. That was the final straw for me. Nazi Gamers Fuck Off was my state of mind. I wanted to help people; to change things for the better. I also realized I was no longer a cis man, and I was looking for a place to belong. In the end, I got fucked over, and most of it is probably my fault. I don’t mean to turn this into my own pity party, but I do sincerely believe that it’s probably too late for me to actually make amends; to properly atone for hurting others. I said a lot of horrible things. I did a lot of petty shit that did me no favors. I know that I’ve said “sorry” on multiple occasions, but I don’t think that’s going to be good enough. And I don’t what will be good enough, if anything. That’s something I have to take responsibility for.
But I can leave you all with this: Do Not Trust Zoe Quinn. Let me say this again, but in all-caps, for emphasis.
DO NOT TRUST ZOE QUINN
That will lead you down a path of pain and misery that you do not want to go down.
Here’s the thing: I don’t want money, or an apology, or anything like that. All I want is my life back. A time where I lived in blissful ignorance; where I only knew the name “Zoe Quinn” because supergreatfriend played Depression Quest on his stream, and I didn’t watch it because Bully Demise and Undertaker (Retro) weren’t involved. A time where I wasn’t a fucking cult member who lost any sense in my head and became a pawn in someone else’s grudges and bigotries. I want the time where I was marginally happier back. Of course, I’ll never get that, and I’ll probably always be mad about that. Always be mad about the lies, the gaslighting, the endless heart emoji’s, the “I love you”‘s, and rhetoric about trans pride that meant nothing. It was all bullshit.
Again, whether or not you believe me on this is up to you; I’m not really in any position to demand trust. I’m just making my feelings known, because I’m tired of having to relive it in my head, over and over.
Something I’ve been trying to push and get over for what seems like the last few years is a return to the days of Web 2.0. As it turns out, I’m actually a pretty big fan of a time where everyone had their own space to express their thoughts and showcase their talents and personality, without having to do so on the same three or four web sites run by nazi jerk offs that nobody likes to use.
Realizing lo these many years that I really, really, really don’t like social media. I bang on about it a lot, but it’s true. Now, I can’t say that social media never did anything good for me; met a lot of my close friends, met my girlfriend, found a larger platform for my artwork and game development. But for all the good, there is so, so much more bad out there. A lot of heartbreak, a lot of betrayal, doxxing, lots of headaches and bullshit. Like yeah, without social media, I wouldn’t have as many friends, but I also wouldn’t have a 20+ page Kiwi Farms thread. I wouldn’t have a girlfriend, but I also wouldn’t be hated by a bunch of people I’ve never met because I was dumb enough to fall for a white woman’s tears when she got backlash over a shitty, racist-in-retrospect article.
And on top of all that, I’m just tired, dude. I’m tired of the quote-tweeting, and the screen capping, of whatever stupid bigoted shit HitlerGamer69 said today. I realized way too late that being an independent watchdog does nothing for nobody. You’re not going to end white supremacy by sharing Richard Spencer’s Facebook posts and saying, “get a load of this guy!” I don’t care what transphobic shit was spouted by Graham Linehan, or Jesse Singal, or Ricky Gervais, or Meghan Murphy, or Leigh Alexander, or who the fuck ever. That shit fucks with my mental health, which we all already know is extremely fragile and tenuous to begin with. Doesn’t help that, despite my best efforts, I’m still stuck in that 2015 mindset of checking my timelines first thing in the morning, and hoping that I don’t find a fucking suicide note.
So, why get a blog? Well, for one thing, I don’t have to see all that shit I mentioned up above. Another thing, it lets you say whatever you want, for as long as you want. Some of you motherfuckers out there like to use Twitter to write a whole damn essay. I don’t want to read theory or whatever in 180 character pieces. And you can put that whole thing down in a blog format, and you don’t have to worry about being interrupted by bad faith arguments mid-way through. They have to read the whole thing to give you shit first. No more of this “part 1/484” shit, put it all down at once.
The great thing about having your own space on the Information Superhighway is that you can just post whatever the fuck you want, dude. Want to post a screenshot from Sonic Jam on the Sega Saturn, then follow up with a picture of a butt, with no rhyme or reason? Go for it! Hell, I’ll do it right now.
Post about games. Post about music. Post about food. Movies. Books. The local Chinese restaurant down the street from your apartment. Your latest haul from the thrift store. Design the look of the site to match your personal aesthetic if you want. It’s all about you, here! In a time where so much of the internet is consolidating to a rigid corporate structure, maintaining your own individuality is more important than ever.
In creating your own space, you get to make the rules. You don’t have to worry about being mass reported and having your shit taken down. Unless you’re posting like child porn or trying to recruit people into the klan, in which case you should consider going offline and doing a Swanton Bomb off a very tall height into the nearest pile of broken glass. Fuck you. But yeah, otherwise, you don’t have to worry about terfs and The Gamers trying to silence you.
I think the point I’m blindly groping for here is to just kick your feet up and have some goddamn fun on the internet. I can only imagine how tired the rest of you are at always being at someone’s throat, and vice versa.
Now I’m going to post another song at the end of this entry, because fuck it, I can.
Been a while since I’ve done a “life” post. Mostly been talking about games or getting mad at wrestling (update: the last several episodes of AEW Dynamite have been pretty sick, so I’m willing to forgive that egregious misstep on their first episode). So what the hell, let’s talk about me here.
Almost a month ago, I officially became a sex worker! Nothing too exciting, I just work on a phone sex line. It’s been pretty alright. I’m not making enough for it to become a full-time job, but it’s a good source of additional income, and I can always use that. Plus I can always laugh at the really weird calls, and silently fist pump when people tell me I have an effeminate voice.
I’m still away from home on business for two more weeks, and I’ve been going crazy. Not being able to work on my game or on any kind of cool art shit has been immensely frustrating, doubly so because there are people who support me via Patreon to do that shit, which I have not been able to do since goddamn September. It sucks. I’ve been trying to find other creative outlets I can do from here, like trying to do some writing, but I have immense writer’s block that comes from the realization that I have not written anything that wasn’t a blog or a video game article or a Twine story in about a decade now. In fact, I found that last piece of writing a while back, during a conversation with Maddy about poetry. I wrote a bad poem about, you guess it, outer space:
It’s dark outside.
This cold, terrible blackness seems to stretch on for eternity.
No sign of light.
No sign of life.
A huge weight lifted off of me, I float about this darkness with awe and fear in my heart.
Then they pull me back to reality.
Come in Major. Come in.
Sorry, Ground Control, but I’d rather stay up here.
Yeah, it wasn’t great. Probably why I haven’t done anything like that since. But I need to do something creative soon before I completely lose my mind.
And hey, speaking of my mind, my last subject for tonight. I’ve been doing a lot of internal fighting with my shitty ass bipolar head recently. Like, I think anyone who knows me knows that I was I spent the last few years in a really bad, messy, confusing situation where myself and entire communities were played against each other by some bad actors and led to stupid in-fighting that went on for way too fucking long and probably could have been nipped in the bud if we realized that things were all a misunderstanding, and if certain people with platforms used them responsibly, instead of egging everyone on like a bunch of gay paranoid Pokemon. Trying to get past all those bad feelings; those trust issues, the bad shit, the constant social media sniping, all that crap, has been really hard. I’ve been going through this pattern of feeling pretty good, having some hope that I won’t be emotionally trapped in the past. Then someone will say something or something will happen and it causes me to spiral my ass all the way back to square one. That sucks. But the last couple of weeks? Barring like one day, it’s been a lot better.
Maybe it’s the sobriety finally taking effect (14 months on the 7th). Or losing contact with people who would encourage my bad, self-destructive mental habits. Or being forced to sit alone, annoyed by my own thoughts until I finally had enough. Or a combination of all of those things. But whatever the case, I just got fucking tired of the anger and the bitterness. I’m forcing myself to close the book on that part of my life.
I’m pretty sure I’ve said this like a hundred times on here, but I need to reiterate it for myself because I clearly did not get it until now: I’ve spent so much time fighting. Having this mindset of needing to take a side in everything. Not looking at the bigger picture. The bigger picture is that I have people in my life that I care about, and vice versa (I hope). I don’t need to focus on anything outside of that circle. Is that maybe a privileged view, ignoring anything outside of my immediate vicinity? Yeah, probably. But I don’t care. I’ve finally decided that it’s a privilege that I’m going to use. Like, I could go on Twitter and take some potshots at someone who claims to be a trans activist, but does nothing but harm to her fellow trans women, OR, I could be happy and proud as fuck that my friend’s first album is coming out soon. I could see whatever dumb ass shit Jesse Singal said today, OR, I could sit back, remember that my girlfriend is kicking her addiction problems’ ass as hard as I am, and be over the moon with joy about that. It’s fucked that it’s taken me 33 years to realize this, but why have I been so focused on things that upset me, when I could have focused on all the good? I mean, I know the answer: I’m mentally ill. But I think you understand what I’m getting at here. I don’t always have my good days, but I need to remember all the beauty that I have in my life, instead of trying to die by a thousand cuts. I can’t let that darkness win.
Oh right, I should post a song before I hit “publish.”