Is everyone ready for some TITS? This week, we get to learn more about the man that is approaching his doctorate in birdology, Jonezii!
Hey Jonezii, welcome to TITS. We’re all excited to have you here today. Let’s start out with an easy question. What do you do for work?
I am a behavioral ecologist and evolutionary biologist. I am currently finishing my Dissertation (I am defending quite literally next week on 15 April!) and I’m currently looking for post-docs afterwards. So currently I am paid to teach undergraduates, but the eventual goal is a faculty position somewhere. But that’s a bit long term. (So you can make ecology behave? That’s how it works, right?)
Aside from videogames, what hobbies or pastimes do you enjoy?
Damn, going for the cliché JoneZii answer right out the gate. Yes, I do enjoy bird watching. The main appeal to it is going out into the wild finding animals in their natural environments, just doing their things. The appeal of birds in this regard is that they’re easy to see relative to other animals, but I do get all hyped when I see frogs or lizards or animals. Just the other weekend I saw my first Armadillo in the wild. Lost my shit because that thing is so cute and weird looking for a mammal. – the reality is with my job and position in life, I rarely have time for anything outside of work, the gf, and our dog. Video games are the one thing I can keep up with outside of work the most.
What is a skill you have that you take pride in?
I am a really good public speaker. It’s a humble brag to be sure, but I enjoy getting up in front of people and just talking and having a conversation with an audience. I don’t like to lecture as much as “entertain” about science, without being over-the-top about the entertaining bit. I’m also a reasonably good writer. (When can we watch your TED talk?)
Any fun facts about yourself?
I have a dad.
How long have you been playing video games and what are some of your earliest memories with games?
It’s hard to say at what age specifically I started playing games, but it was early on. The one that stands out the most to me growing up is Sonic 2 on the Sega. But I remember my younger brothers bringing home a copy of halo 2 and that being the first time trying the game. Instantly fell in love with it and became a pvp player ever since. I like challenging myself against others, but I always do not like the toxic culture of being “the best” at the expense of others. I think there’s always room to improve yourself in everything you do with time and I think pvp has always been one of those components of games that I strive to be better in.
What are your favorite foods, music, movies, shows, etc.?
Growing up in Jersey, Pizza. I know everyone loves pizza. I get it. But I grew up on the boardwalk just always having access to a slice on demand. Good times. But, that said, Pho is my second favorite dish. I’m a sour beer fan and go for the sourest of beers when possible. Sour anything really. Particularly jellybeans. Oh, and Marvel stuff is the movie bit. (I assumed this was your favorite food)
Is there any special story or significance to your gamertag?
I wish there was, but alas, my last name is Jones. So.
Let’s talk a bit about Destiny and Clan Truth specifically. When did you first start playing Destiny, and can you tell us about what drew you to the game?
The beta. Destiny drew me in as a Bungie game, and it was the pvp scene that got me hooked. That statement alone will undoubtedly make a few folk cringes and I get it. Pvp in destiny, currently, is not in a wonderful spot from the standpoint of getting support from Bungie. But it’s what brought me into the game and it’s honestly the reason I’ve stayed all this time. Whatever I do in the main, pve, side of the game is prep work to better me in pvp. (Which reminds me, thank you again for opening my eyes to the glory that is Cloudstrike)
What is your favorite/primary class? Why?
Hunters (oh no who could have seen that coming?). But ironically, I think I reach my peak when I’m on warlock. Top tree dawn is one of the most fun subclasses in the game.
Who has the best jump?
Hunters, clearly. (And here, I thought you usually had good takes)
If you could remove any one weapon from the game, which one and why?
Damn that’s a hard one. (Title of your sex tape?) My gut tells me Le Le Monarque. I don’t like DoT effects in the game in general and that’s one of the primary offenders of that. But even here, the real issue is the hot swap with hand cannons so what’s the real issue here? There will always be outliers, but I think destiny is a very balanced place right now. So, it comes down to what annoys me the most, and it’s the DoT weapons like lemonarc. Thorn would qualify but the tick burn doesn’t last as long.
If you could design an exotic weapon or armor, what would it be?
Going to basic bitch this one and just say any armor piece that gives you the effect of Icarus grip without using the mod. I hate that mod having to be a default on every weapon I use, but in air accuracy sucksss.
If you could date any character(s) from Destiny, who and why?
I mean Ikora is bald, I’m bald… bald human meta.
What Destiny characters would you ship together that aren’t already?
Full disclosure – I had a boomer moment and had to ask Witty what this meant. I mean, Caiatl and Zavala seems the obvious one, doesn’t it? But a contender to that could be r/dtg + rational discourse or Twitter + the recognition that hand cannons will always be meta for their versatility more than their pure strength per se. (Ok boomer)
We’ve covered the standard questions, now let’s move on to learning more about the real Jonezii.
Are there wireless chargeable birds, or is there a place where they go to get new batteries?
Nah they’re very efficient. Upgraded to rechargeables after the asteroid hit a couple (million) years ago.
When are you getting a new PC?
When I get a big boi job
When are you expecting Fiery and Waffles to buy you a new PC?
What is your favorite bird?
I loathe this question. There are ~10K species. It’s so hard to choose. Let’s narrow it down a bit. My favorite Order of birds are Coraciiforms, which contain your king fishers and bee eaters. I love those guys, although we don’t have much representation here in America of them. But there's so many really good options. My favorite hummingbird is the “Sword-billed hummingbird,” my favorite bird of paradise is the “King Bird of Paradise,” favorite fairywren species is the “Emperor fairywren,” warbler is “Chestnut-sided warbler.” I guess my all time, will always have a soft spot in my heart favorite bird is the Eastern Bluebird. It’s what got me started in science.
Please describe how birds are supposedly real in 5,000 words or more.
Classified. (That isn't enough words.)
What’s more real, those things you study, or Waffle’s dad?
Who do you think is the sexiest admin?
Bald man meta. (Accurate.)
How did you become a bird feminist? Were there any specific events that inspired you?
All memes aside, everything we know about evolution is from the male perspective, but female animals have fundamentally different ways to achieve optimal fitness. You can’t have a clear understanding of the mechanisms of evolution unless you explore all perspectives.
How many birb memes can a PowerPoint hold?
Well, my current file size for my defense is ~650 mb, so quite a bit.
What is the eeriest thing you have ever seen/encountered?
In the wild? Glow in the dark fungi. Really, really cool, but also kind of just creepy. (How did they taste?)
Describe what you were like at age ten.
I barely remember last week. I honestly couldn’t tell you what I was like. A nerd playing sonic or watching Space Jam or some shit idk. (Fun fact: Shua has seen Space Jam over 100 times)
If you were handed $50,000 in cash and told it had to be used in the next 7 days to take a trip worth writing a book about, where would you go? What would you do?
Madagascar. Evolution just went wild on this island for so many different groups of animals and plants and I’d just go exploring.
Who is the best character on Sesame Street? Defend your reasoning.
Oscar. Dudes understandably grouchy for society giving him so much shit for living in a trashcan. Dudes down on his luck and you all just keep piling on him! #LeaveOscarAlone
What is the best cookie?
Choco + Peanut butter
How many times have you been published?
What is your dream vehicle?
If you could meet anyone in the world dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Sir David Attenborough. This man is a legend, an icon, and a personal hero of mine. Always advocating for nature above all else. Has narrated so many different nature documentaries too. (Dead or alive though?)
Tell us two truths and two lies about yourself.
I have an unhealthy addiction to jellybeans, I know my right from my left most of the time, I’ve studied birds in 4 different countries, I am more interested in competitive Overwatch e-sports than I am traditional meat sports.
What made you laugh the hardest you’ve ever laughed in your life?
I kind of lost my shit just now at the question about Waffle’s dad.
Do you have any phobias?
Can’t really think if so… other than entropy and decay of the human body, that is.
Is a birb in the hand really worth two in the bush?
No. But four, on the other hand…
(You had to say "on the other hand" knowing Banditt is gonna read this? Rude.)
What made you decide to pursue a PHD in birds?
I really, really like pretty colors. So I’m interested in the evolution of those. Because colors are one of many signals that animals can use to communicate among each other. Turns out, birds are pretty damn colorful and easy to study.
Do you still use the bird drawings that ADrunkenSaylor made for you?
Which ones did Saylor make again? Not sure. But yes, I use these still. Always down for more (hint hint)
Can you make a bird-themed call out sheet for VotD?
Could I? Sure. But not until after my defense. Maybe eventually though – remind me.
Are you coming to Truth Con?
This is the first time I’ve heard of this. Maybe I should read discord more often. (Details to come soon, but we are looking at July 28th in Washington State)
Identify the following birds please.
“Brown-and-black Leave-me-alone it’s bedtime” (Satanic Nightjar)
“Long-necked the fuck did you just say to me?” (Little Bustard)
Dickcissel. No joke needed, actual bird name works. (Correct)
Edgy cardinal. (Grey Go-Away-Bird)
Blue-eyed whats-you-call-it. (Fluffy-Backed Tit-Babbler)
Red-assed bush-dictator. (Close enough! Red-Rumped Bush-Tyrant)
Noisy Friarbird – I’ve caught these before. They’re also called leatherheads. (Well done!)
Pissed off chicken
Is there anything else you would like to tell us about yourself that we haven’t covered yet?
I’m not surprised with how many bird questions I got, don’t get me wrong, but I expected a few about destiny pvp and how it’s definitely the best part of the game. Kind of surprised. Good on you. (We only ask PVP questions of good players).
Jonezii, it was an absolute pleasure! We wish you luck on your defense of your dissertation!!