Maybe we need a bit more philosophy?

Everyone knows about the Roe vs. Wade decision which was overturned yesterday by now. There is a planned parenthood/abortion clinic near my house that we routinely drive by if Megan and I are doing errands or grabbing a bit to eat at Panera. Without fail there are protestors out in front of it. Even today, in the rain, after the largest anti-abortion victory in fifty years, they were out there again protesting. 

Ironically, I came across this video on TikTok this morning and while I don't normally like this sort of hyperbolic rhetoric, I do feel like it aptly sums up what I seem to observe. 

As I continued to drive home in the rain, it really got me thinking about the why and my mind drifted for some reason to philosophy. I have mentioned on here before who I studied political theory as my undergrad degree and there is a lot of overlap to philosophy there. Without a doubt those courses changed my entire outlook on the world and me as a person, and I grew and learned more from those courses than anything else I have ever taken. STEM has been such a large push in our world the past 20 years or so, and it just makes me think that perhaps instead of reinforcing the productive, output-driven focus of STEM education if we all might just be a little bit better off if we have some art, philosophy and music eduction to slow everything down. To teach people some contemplation an insight. 

You know, in Dungeons and Dragons there are two fundamental mechanics for using your brain to solve problems. Intelligence and Wisdom. We've really been pushing that intelligence part pretty hard with STEM learning. Perhaps we need to take some time and give the Wisdom score a little bit of love.

Several years ago I posted some reading ideas for those who may want to get into Political Theory, and by proxy some philosophy. I'll re-link that post here: Matt's Reading Suggestions for Political Theory

Additionally, this seems to be a nice list to start for many people, although any 1-2 of these will probably suffice as an introduction: 15 Best Philosophy Books for Beginners (Introductory Books to Start With)

Videogaming: Stardew Valley - Everything I Hoped Animal Crossing Would Be.

Stardew Valley has been out for years at this point and I have heard nothing but good things about the game. My wife has been playing it for quite a while actually and it was on sale recently on Xbox for $8 so I decided to pick it up. I have played a number of the farm/life sim games over the years and I even really go into Animal Crossing Wild World back on the DS years back. 

Other than that though I have never really been captured by any of the life simulation games. I have played the Sims here and there and I have played some Harvest Moon games as well. Stardew has taken me by surprise though. It is quote simply one of the most relaxing and chill games I have ever played. It's too bad that it is not available on the Nintendo 3Ds because I really see it as an ideal portable game. 

The music, the atmosphere, the coloring is all there. I am only in my first year and I have made it to the autumn season, and I just love how each season in the game has a completely different vibe. What's more, is that there are no fail conditions as far as I know. You are completely free to tackle each task at your own pace and while the initial premise of the game is farming, that certainly does not have to be a priority item for you if you do not wish it to be. 

Perhaps one of my favorite features though straight out is that time doesn't pass when you log out. I know that this is a defining feature for Animal Crossing, but Animal Crossing is one of those games that demands your attention. If you aren't playing it daily it literally makes you feel bad when you miss a day. The life sim games have always been about playing them in short bursts for me. I might play and hour or two a week, play it for a while and then take months off before coming back again. 

I think that Stardew quite simply might be the perfect life sim game and is by far the most enjoyable I have ever played. 

Rev'it Cayanne Pro Riding Jacket and Pants - First 200 miles

It was time for some new riding gear. Most of my equipment is getting pretty old at this point, going on 8+ years, so the wear and tear is beginning to show on some of it. I have primarily two sets of riding gear at the moment, a leather jacket and pants, and then some nylon riding gear that I have been using for my longer tours. 

The leather gear is still in remarkably good shape, but the Olympia Airglide jacket and pants have come to the end of their road I think. The velcro straps on most of it are starting to lose their grip, the front right pants pocket has a hole in it and it is just starting to look a bit grundgy overall. 

I have spent quite a lot of time recently trying to find the right gear that I wanted to replace it with. I have looked at probably a dozen different jackets and pants, including some full riding suits. In the end I finally decided to settle on the Rev'it Cayenne Pro jacket and pants. 

This set is a hot weather tour riding set. It does not come with a thermal liner or a waterproof layer, and that is intentional on Rev'its part for the user to bring their own to additional gear or build it up. They call it a modular system and they do offer a number of other layers that can be added. While doing my research, this did trouble me a bit. I was looking closely at the Rev'It Sand jacket and pants as an alternative here. That set is probably one of the best selling jacket and pant sets out there and comes with a thermal and waterproof liner. 

After taking a close look at my riding environment though I had to admit that I ride mostly in warm weather. Probably 95% of my riding is in warm weather, no let me change that, 95% of my riding is in hot weather. I decided that going with the specialized setup rather than the "jack of all trades" would be the better route this time around. I already own heated thermal linings which I can add if I need to, and I have been pretty disappointed in the built in rain layer on my other equipment. 

I finally had the chance to put about 200 miles on the suit this weekend, so let's review my initial thoughts.