Tuesday, December 27, 2016

How You End 2016?

2-2-2-2-2016!!! The final days!
To be honest, 2016 has been a crazy year from the start. We had low-poly flying Lamborghinis and alien invasions (shout out to GKRacer @ Trackmania Carpark for this one!), to some WTF-inducing censors, some bigotry here and there, Donald Trump, and too much political drama crippling the year. But even with all that stuff, there are also tons of good things, like Leonardo DiCaprio winning Oscars.

On a personal standpoint, I managed to try out some new things and reconciled with a fraction of my past. And even I am about to start my final paper project, which means this will be my last months of college! Waiting on the horizon are a bunch of job applications ready to be seized, and the road ahead will be more challenging as I go forward.

Unfortunately, I couldn't do much things like I did in the past, not even random browsing sessions could save it. I'm left dealing with a couple of political dramas on social media (oh dear...), but I believe I won't go further than this, because I had to stay away from writing about political dramas here (mentioning "Donald Trump" in this post should be the first time and the last time). But, as I go through some of those random sessions, there are a good couple of things I could write on, starting with...


La La Land dominated the Critics' Choice Awards night on 11th December, making it the second CCAs in 2016. (Image: A&E /
I know this blog might not be the perfect place to post about Awards Season as it is my other blog's job to cover that kind of stuff, but here it goes: The 2017 Awards Season just kicks off way earlier than expected, even way earlier than Christmas. If you'd like to ask who did this, better ask the 22nd Critics' Choice Awards which was held on 11th December. Like last year, the Critics' Choice Awards gathered movies and television series altogether in one gala, awarding the best of both worlds as the members of  the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA) and Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA) see fit.

This year, the musical drama/comedy movie La La Land conquered the gala with eight out of twelve nominations were won including the Best Picture category. While The People vs. O.J. Simpson is the leader for the television counterpart with actor wins and being the best in Limited Series and Television Movies.

I believe I saw some episodes of O.J. Simpson while my cable was still on. It's a great show with an impeccable acting ensemble and a deep theme: it's based on the trials of O.J. Simpson which took the world. Not to mention, I enjoy watching Sarah Paulson in the series! She's one of the intriguing names I enjoy watching. I'm considering to binge-watch the full season if I have time, hopefully I will because I have one other series I'm watching, despite not technically binge-watching because my time isn't merely for binge-watching.

As for La La Land, I haven't consider watching this yet. Hell, I don't even have any most-recent movie I have watched. Maybe I could give this one a go and see if this critics' choice movie fits me well one day?

Next stop will be Golden Globes for the Awards Season. Both La La Land and The People vs. O.J. Simpson may once again dominate as they have the most nominations in their respective categories, but looking at the nominations, it'll be a hot race! Aside from that, I have created both Twitter and Tumblr accounts of mine dedicated to heat up this race, and somehow turning this into a spectator sport. Meanwhile, I also have my Golden Globes prediction post at the ready, so expect it to land somewhere other than this place lol!

More precisely, a spectator sport that is a blatant copy of FIA World Endurance Championship but any instance of Endurance is replaced by award shows and polling competitions and sadly not even the full script of Bee Movie or Big Smoke's orders.


BEHOLD! The progress of my Indianapolis!
Given my progress on stuffs are currently stagnant with motivational issues and time being the main reasons, I couldn't even promise any of my Turbo Sliders stuffs in WIP status any immediate release. Though if I have to name one I am working on most lately, that'd be Indianapolis, a track I have promised to have a new version for SCARTS.

My last point of progress would be having only the oval track given a tarmac pattern defined on the track's pattern file, yet the barriers which will represent each configuration have been worked on, and the lines for the kerbs weren't worked yet. However, until recently, I have defined the tarmac for all road courses including the parking spot (which would be where the "Victory Lane" for the SCARTS event take place), worked the kerb lines (even followed the three-color pattern, based on the recent Google Maps shot of the track), and started working on with the environment, including putting some water and tree tiles.

Indianapolis is said to be nothing without its brickyard. Even in TS, the bricks are not going anywhere!
Fear not, the track is almost done, and is ready to be driveable sooner or later. Once all the work concerning the additional placement of tiles are done, it'll be done to just copying the track to constitute the playable layouts and this will be the next real-world track of mine after Tsukuba Circuit! Any updates of the track's release will be a blog post of its own later on. I might even consider having a short track introduction video showcasing cars racing through the new track with different configurations, but that depends whenever my laptop is able to capture videos with good results.


Make no mistake! Assetto Corsa now features Porsche in their latest Porsche DLC Pack that has been available since October 25th (Image: KUNOS Simulazioni / RaceDepartment)
As you know, the infamous exclusive deal between Electronic Arts and Porsche is ending, signified with Assetto Corsa, one of the best sim titles in the market though not without its haters, featuring well-known Porsches from road-going cars to circuit-breed purpose-builts as its next batch of cars, with periodically-added rosters. Understandably, both racing and sim racing fandoms are delighted about this, because they knew that in recent years the exclusivity doesn't sit well, especially knowing EA. This however isn't a surprising news because months ago we knew that this would come as the days of exclusivity started to number, and right now it has reached its climax.

History-wise, EA prominently featured Porsches since Need For Speed: Porsche Unleashed and followed by the next batch of NFS titles, with the exclusive deal between both parties forced other developers to resort on Porsche-based tuners, like Gemballa in case of Midnight Club and Kaido Battle series, and RUF in numerous franchises including Gran Turismo and Maximum Tune, being the eventual stand-in for the German manufacturer. During the exclusivity though, Gran Turismo 3 featured a 911 (the 996 model) as a hidden car with no explicit manufacturer and badge, and Forza Motorsport also had Porsches as their DLC cars.

This should open up a couple of promising possibilities, including, but not limited to, a possible Gran Turismo Sport appearance. Besides, who really likes to see a Porsche getting represented in the latest GT installment? Nobody would say "no"! They've already got Ferrari, another manufacturer subject to exclusivity with SEGA/Microsoft, but not as aggressive as EA's with Porsche as they also allowed other developers to feature Ferrari as well. In short, they don't have this "you have to go through me" mentality if I had to quote John Race Space's article of the same issue.

Need For Speed: Porsche Unleashed, a true Porsche showcase in the Need For Speed series by EA. This is the PSX version of the game as the PC version has a contrasting difference to its console counterpart. (Image: Lendas & Lendarios)
Speaking of the article, I think I do agree on every bit of it. Porsche Unleashed was EA's best Porsche-centered game, and succeeding games didn't have the same kick as the game. Outside NFS series, Real Racing 3 comes to mind, with a range of road-going cars being featured plus race cars such as the 991 GTE and the 919 Hybrid, representing the more modern spectrum. With Porsche seeing a more long-term market and knowing that their exclusivity has started to turn a win-win for EA as well to lose-lose, the writing is on the wall for both parties.

But with Porsche appearing, shouldn't everything that features RUF just move on to Porsche and ditch the stand-in? Personally, no. RUF and Porsche, although having the same Porsche blood, have their own appeal. Yes, Porsche is known for its numerous road and race cars that shaped the automotive industry, but let's not forget that RUF also make unique cars too, like the CTR3 for example. It's RUF's original design that stands out of all RUF models in my eyes, packed with a whopping 750hp V8 power. Many people would say that, despite original design, it's Porsche Carrera on steroids, which is also my exact thoughts when seeing that captivating car.

So, if you want to have Porsches in more well-known racing games and simulators, the time will surely come for sure, except if you already drive some sim racing mods with Porsches in it! For now, Assetto Corsa is where the Stuttgart-based fun is at!


A photo posted by Rendy Andrian Y (@tsukasa_kadoya) on
Seeing the big burger menu for the first time when I visited the Pondok Labu branch of Blenger Burger, one of the best burger joints that gives big burgers at a reasonable price, I was curious whether I can finish it in one go. I'm a fan of burgers, and I'm a sucker for double cheese ones, but the Double Cheese burger, with lots more of stuffs including smoked beef and a sunny side-up, it's another level.

Come the day where I visited the same place again after attending my classmate's final paper seminar in the afternoon, around 4 pm I arrived. Ordered the burger and only managed to get the soft drink (the French Fries was unfortunately out of stock though I bought it elsewhere nearby), and as it came, it was literally a monster. Four smoked beef slices, double beef and cheese, one sunny side-up, a couple of vegetables. Even I had difficulties gripping it!

Eventually, I finished the burger in 20 minutes approximate (with fries and two bottles of coke, which isn't that big), without taking away the fact that I had to stop or a while in the last couple of minutes. I told to myself that this will be the first and the last time I eat this kind of monster. As soon as I finished everything, I took my time to empty my stomach and literally ran two laps around the store in an attempt to avoid potential weight gain. Read that somewhere online in an article about tips of eating like a competitive eater.

The reason why I had my eye on this burger was to see whenever I will be ready to face a bigger challenge or not: Dino Steak & Pasta's Godzilla Burger. The burger is a stacked tower of meat and cheese with vegetables thrown in between the mix, with fries accompanying the burger below. This is also part of a challenge in which this burger in question has to be finished within 30 minutes, or you had to pay IDR 87,500 (roughly about less than 7 bucks). Looking at above experience, being just "half" of that stacked tower, I'm not even sure I could manage to win that challenge. My stomach isn't as big as those competitive eaters you'd see in Major League Eating, but then again I tend to play safe not adding weight to my body (read: can't be bothered to be bigger).

Damn, I really wanted to eat that bigger monster, but surely I need to re-read that competitive eating tips to increase stomach capacity...


"Couldn't 2016 get any worse? Any way to end 2016 with a bang?"

Well, if you happen to be one of those people watching the second leg of this year's AFF Suzuki Cup final last week between Indonesia and Thailand, and watched the ENTIRE match... Look. No. Further.

Triggered by Thai bench substitutes, an Indonesian player, who was going to take a throw-in, literally kicked the ball in the direction of the Thai bench. Although injuring no one, the controversial kick earned him the red card, right at the very last minute. You can't imagine how shocked in disbelieve I was when seeing that move live.

But in another perspective, I think the move was relatable to describe how distorted the whole 2016 was. Why is that, you ask? We faced ourselves a countless censorship issues that made Netflix a victim of "site blocking" and TV stations blurring out parts that has no other intention than to annoy the shit of avid watchers. We faced a couple of cases of bigotry, victim-blaming in rape cases, event sweeping, moral police acts, and phobias to certain elements. More recently, political issues have clouded the world, especially in USA and Indonesia, and our petulancy showed when a brand's neutral stance clarification ended up being a brand boycott vaganza. We were all fed up big time that the only way to end this is to give the fucking hell out by simply kicking the ball to all the problems.

And Abduh Lestaluhu did it very, very, fucking well. He definitely knew how to take the middle finger out for 2016 without having to use the middle finger.

But that aside, it doesn't change the fact that we lost the game in general: the second leg had Thailand winning 2-0 over Indonesia, with an aggregate score of 3-2 in Thailand's favor, earning it the fifth AFF Suzuki Cup win, and Indonesia the fifth runner-up title. All the home lead was lost, but I don't expect them to win as Away matches are way tough (the second leg semifinal against Vietnam comes to mind), especially if it's Thailand, the same team that beat us in the group stage.

In the first half, we were defensive, understandably to not let any of Thai's kicks penetrate the goal, but it changed at minute 38 where Thailand's Siroch Chattong scored, making it a 1-0 until the first half ends, and I can't believe that last-minute corner kick didn't go anywhere.

The second half didn't get much better as plays were somehow more lacking and with Thailand scoring another goal. Our team even stripped of any chances, shoots to goal were either too high or missed big time, and our passes didn't seem to work well. A penalty kick for Thailand due to our goalkeeper's foul in the penalty area saw Teerasil Dangda a.k.a the literal verb-noun for "Dangerous" in this tournament, having scored the most goals, taking the kick, but Kurnia Meiga showed his prowess and the 3-0 didn't happen. Chances weren't anywhere unfortunately for Indonesia, and that was that. Highlights go this way courtesy of AFF Suzuki Cup's official site.

That last kick? Apparently, there's an underlying reason why Lestaluhu did it: the Thai bench players were wasting time when the ball was out for Indonesia's throw in near the Injury Time's end, knowing that they will win the game right away. Lestaluhu, annoyed by this, first told the referee that this wasn't a fair play, and after a no-response, there went the kick. He was given a red card afterwards, and he seemed to give one final finger as he exited the stadium on a Facebook video, unfortunately though I couldn't seem to find it again (My fault for not bookmarking it).

It's been a fun and challenging experience this year, knowing that this is our first international tournament after FIFA lifted our suspension for our government meddling as I pointed in the last post. We had little to no preparations, we only take two players in each club competing in the Coffee-brand Soccer Tournament presented by Insert A Mobile Carrier Company Here (even some clubs there were reluctant to put their players there). Coach Alfred Riedl has done well as always, yet I don't think he won't be staying any longer as he did state that he might be retiring or moving to another team after this tournament ends, regardless of result. Not a win, but taking those into account, it's a good result after all. Lots of homework from this: breed new talent, bring back the OG Indonesian Super League, and at least give Lestaluhu a disciplinary action.

Remember guys, if you're tired of all the 2016 drama and wanted to give a middle finger as 2017 draws near, find a nearby stadium, find any substitution bench or similar, and kick the ball towards that place. Alternatively, write a 2016 drama on any of the benches and ask Lestaluhu to kick the ball towards it!


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