Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Composed When Composing

So this will most likely be my last one for this year and my first for a little while now, for both of those I have reasons for. There have been a multitude of things going on this last fortnight, I am sure that it has been like that for most around the world, however, there still have been times where it’s been necessary for certain thoughts to be suppressed and times where they have needed to be squeezed out, hence why blog material has been in the lacking and I also now have an idea as to what this dying year should see from this blog's exit from the current decade.

Me? I read many blogs, some that reach a more profound level of sincerity than this one ever has, but one thing I tend to always notice that those people do wrong with some of their posts, often making it hard for me to even return, is that you can tell that they had written them while under the nasty intoxication of anger. Ideally this would be fine, but unfortunately as humans, our moods have a tendency to overcome us and when an angry one strikes, we, and by ‘we’ I refer to humans, are notorious for reacting quite over-dramatically and when in such a state, you're better off sleeping on the dissertations for the day, if you ask me. Take it from me, negative feelings can often reflect poorly on the sentimental quality of your emotions and the words you use to express them. So about my posts or lack thereof - when I am angry, I’m as over-dramatic as humanly possible, this is why I haven’t posted too much of late. Despite having written a lot privately, I have been struggling to birth something that I feel comfortable about others reading, not because of the content but more the bad mood I was in when writing the pieces. You see, in light of my past dramaticisms, a year ago when creating this site, I made it a strict rule not to write when I’m not feeling as composed as I could be, I mean, I wasn’t prepared to create a blog to fill it with what I’ve dreaded reading on other peoples blogs, that would be illogical. It’s just my method of prevention, I don’t wish for anyone to switch on the page and see paragraphs of insults or to see how utterly miserable something has made me with no resolve, nor do I want to wake up the next morning in the hangover of moody-writing only to read paragraphs of profanity and self-sympathy. So I suggest that you consider that when you find yourself about to post, ask yourself: Was I composed when composing?

The reason as to why this might be the last post date-stamped ‘2009’ is for similar reasons. This year I haven’t been the happiest of campers, hence why I have been hiding my thoughts, although, I must admit that I am very pleased with how my Christmas has turned out. So as a result of my vocal struggle, there is now a good list of different things I need to get off my chest (and off of my incomplete blog list) which were notes that I really didn’t want to end the year on, and more importantly, the decade. Leaving it negatively, especially with the recent Christmas season, really isn’t what I want, written angrily or not.

So ‘09, I don’t have too much more to say for it really. Although not a lot has changed, I am beginning to take some of the things that have worried me into my stride and all the other things I will deal with in due time, so for now I will just say that I hope you had a great Christmas and that you have a fantastic New Years.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Prescript Life of a False Persona

I have a theory about the lives of certain characters in the run of a storyline, however, it particularly refers to the main characters and the life they lead prior to (and lead after) the beginning of that story; it applies to the majority of the books, motion-pictures and TV shows that are available to date. The theory simply states that most characters in a story lead somewhat unfulfilling and boring lives in the time that they do not spend in front of our eyes, which I feel misrepresents real-life. In the scripted life of any character, life is a segment, not a flow of events that we experience in reality.

Trying to explain this and then back it up with an example is not an easy task as most narratives vary and some tend to even attempt to cover themselves of this in some fashion, however, the best I think I can come up with is the action-drama television series 24. For those that aren’t familiar with this series (god forbid), this show in its early stages was semi-enjoyable, despite the fact that it’s always been a total crock in terms of characteristic realism, not to mention in terms of anything else. 24 is a show which follows a government agent, who seems to always be on his cell phone when he is meant to be driving, through a day jam-packed with events. Each season denotes one day, twenty-four episodes are in each of those seasons, each representing an hour in that day. Reason that this example does not perfectly back-up my point is because major changes seem to always be happening in between each season, however where the realism is not so strong is the fact that it is very segmentary in the way that any other crime seems to be at a stand-still during one of these seasons, and for an extensive government agency, not one person seems to be working on anything else other than this one case, like whenever Jack Bauer isn’t hunting down some terrorist-mastermind the agency might as well just close until he gets over his depression or gets pardoned out of prison and shaves that funky beard (all of which was done in the span of ten minutes, by the way).

Realistically, our lives generally smoothen out and things happen over time, however in the life of a character in its entirety, everything only seems to happen in a small fraction of their fictional lives and then they live ‘happily ever after’. Often I notice in television pilot episodes that everybody has conversations like they have just met or like one of them has been on one big overseas holiday for a few years which has prevented them from conversing about past events, it’s usually a conversation that builds the premise for some sort of story arc or something else particular to that character’s past, however, it would turn out that they have remained in close proximity and have been friends with these people long enough for an opportunity other than the one shown in the pilot episode to have such conversations; this is where 24 managed to cover themselves somewhat, in the pilot and the first episodes of the following seasons.

I have no real issue with it, it’s just a theory of mine that I think will always be what prevents a writer from truly capturing life in its most sedulous form. So, unfortunately when you are dealing with the limitation of a time slot or your words on a notepad, there is only so little time to demonstrate so much about a character.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

A Few Things

Just a few small things that have been my mind lately.

Horror Movies are a group activity
I am more of a comedy/ drama guy when it comes to films, but on the odd occasion that I find myself watching a bunch of teens smoking weed out in the bush only puffs away from being gutted, a guy in a contorting-contraption that is literally dividing each bone in his body or even a woman being raped by mutated-males just so that she can shoot out a mutant baby of her own, I feel that those moments are better enjoyed with company than on my lonesome like it’s some personal montage of muscle-clinching instances. It isn’t a fear thing, but I prefer to stomach such horror with someone that is going through the exact same psychological trauma that I am going through, that’s all.

Slang regarding Food
I have discovered that I love any term related to food. Some of my personal favourites:
  • Peckish (meaning ‘somewhat hungry’)
  • Chow Down
  • Polish off a box of…
  • Devour
  • Attack
Flavoured Milk on Soy?
Gladys and I came up with this one: We know that it is possible to buy it in a carton from the supermarket, but we were a bit puzzled as to why chilled flavoured milks in a bottle were only available in light milk as an alternative to full-cream, however, not available in a soy alternative. So subsequent to this mystery, in the imaginary land that is our brains, we plan to open a company, much like Oak and Moove, with the typical flavours of Chocolate, Strawberry and Ice Coffee, however, to serve those that make up the fragment of the population that have issues with the digestion of lactose.

One-on-one beats all
My social abilities are much-like writing a script, I prefer only two people in the conversation, including myself, that way there is less people to keep track of and therefore less chance of interruption in the overall flow of a potentially fantastic conversation. I always feel like more can be achieved as the conversation remains on more of a personal level, whereas with a group, things said are more like announcements than spoken-words between friends, therefore things are always left unsaid and bottled.

Aldi & IKEA
How many people are these foreign companies hiring? These places are sometimes below understaffed. In Aldi, I have literally walked in and there has been one checkout-chick and that’s it, almost like that day on the roster was just blank with the exception of her name; I am serious, that simple guy unpacking boxes you would usually find at Woolworths was nowhere to be seen, not one person was just walking around looking busy, like you would see in any store. At times it has gotten to the point where I have become more intent on seeking out assistance than I did in finding the item I was initially looking for.

Rappers without anything to say
Two things that really grind my bones when I am listening to music, rap in particular:
  • I am sick of hearing black guys talk about how once upon a time they hardly had any respect and only a few dollars to their name, and now they have more money and respect than a god. One person said it in a song and that was enough, now some artists find it hard not to include how they went from rags to riches in a song; it’s sure to become the new ‘yo, yo’ phrase that they say before each track.
  • “I’ve got my mind on my money and my money on my mind” This is not a lyric! It’s a clever way of stating a somewhat obvious and general fact. Tell me, excluding Buddhists, what person doesn’t have their mind on their money, not to mention rappers?
Stickers that Elvis had issues with
So, it’s the 21st century, and most of everything that we use day-to-day is usually a refined version of its predecessor, we have learnt from our mistakes, new materials are being used and new methods of how those materials should be manufactured have been discovered, however, it would seem that there is one minute intricacy of our daily use which has managed to remain impervious to our advancements over the last century: those damn stickers that come on newly purchased items. For some reason, nobody has invented an affordable sticker which won’t leave a sticky residue when you try to take it off of your CD cover; I am still waiting.

Fictional Wedding Day Clichés
Every time I see a wedding scene in a film or on TV I am just like ‘here we go’ then I follow it with a roll of the eyes, I can always just taste something about to happen when I see that church. It would seem that writers don’t know that people actually have normal, successful wedding ceremonies. This is the usual formula for these clichéd fictional-weddings: The priest, the groom and the rest of them are waiting at the altar, they play that song which has never been played at a wedding I have attended, and then the bride walks down, if she showed up of course - you can’t forget that milestone. So she’s at the altar, he’s at the altar and of course then some guy shows up and everybody must STOP THE CEREMONY AND LISTEN TO ME, I am only seconds away from whipping out some eloquent, ceremony-ending speech about love, I mean someone correct me if I am wrong, but is this happening as frequently as it does in the fictional universe, if at all? Who here reading this right now would wait til the wedding day to profess their feelings only to look like some douche in front of a congregation of people to a woman that looks to me like she has already made up her mind? Anyway, some of my favourite movies have this scene, usually at the end, but the next time I walk into a cinema and see this, I may just walk out, especially if she ends up with the guy not wearing the groom’s outfit.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Ten Missed Calls

I’m not clingy, unless of course the situation calls for it. You see, there are two types of people, the clingy and the not so clingy, but you see, there are also these people that do this thing, I see it as the coward’s outlet of an easy escape, only problem is that this methodology can turn even the not so clingy into full-blown stalkers, it’s called avoiding. When you aren’t replying to messages, when you are letting calls ring-out in the hopes that it’ll be the last or even when you just pass by without a sign of acknowledgement, what do you expect to happen? This is the thing I fail to apprehend. In lieu of just being forthright with people, others are willing to make things worse and cause trouble as a tool used to get rid of people.

As I said, I don’t consider myself to be generally clingy, but I know in myself that naturally if somebody isn’t replying to my messages that I will most likely message again in a few days, maybe even that day, if a call goes unanswered that I will try again, and if somebody ignores me out on the street that…well, the amount of calls I’d be making to that person would have just multiplied considerably; are you catching what I am trying to demonstrate here? Understand that if you are one of those who has tried to avoid someone presuming that they will just give up eventually, those people, at least for a while, are just going to persist further, it’s a little like a shell that is stuck to a rock with a creature still living in it (a Patella vulgate, to be all technical), think of it like you’re the creature, at first you would only be grasping onto that surface with neutral pressure, but once somebody comes along and tries to pull you and your shell off of it, you grasp harder, and then when they try again straight after, you grasp even tighter. See? The thing is, the more you grasp onto that rock under your little coward sanctuary that is the shell, the more someone is going to want and try to take you off of that rock, and then you’ve only created this little vicious cycle for yourself, whereas you could have just ended it all forty messages ago with a f*** off, you are annoying me, although, make sure that you rephrase that in the nicest possible way, I am not condoning that sort of approach – if you do, you might as well slash their wrists for them.

I’ve been on both the receiving and the giving end in this situation. Being completely truthful, I once served an ex-girlfriend at work that treated me exactly like I was just another employee at that place, I have also had friendships and even relationships end simply because they began to avoid, some of which have succeeded and I haven’t heard from in years. Some have indeed won with me, one day I have just thrown down my phone and decided that it was the last time that I was going to try, but I spent a little more than a few months trying, believe me, I am the type of guy that if I don’t understand something or if I need a few questions answered that I am willing to go out of my way in order to culminate that desire for affirmation, so don’t be a douche. So when the tables have turned and it’s come down to me befriending somebody that has dropped a few too many messages my way, I can honestly say that I have never just begun to avoid someone, unless there has been some form of discrepancy. I could never just abruptly leave somebody hanging over there phone for three months waiting for a call that will never come, I have always been upfront, and usually pretty promptly too; the earlier the better, I say. So, if I can do it, and I am still alive and still friends with those that I have had a talk with, why can’t you? I have always gone into one of these conversations completely aware that I am potentially putting a nasty negative above my head and will possibly be called an arsehole for as long as I see this person and their friends, but I have jumped into it anyway, and every time without fail, the clinginess has consequently subsided and the negative name-calling has worn off in less than weeks. So with all of that being said and my experience with it now out there, let’s weigh the options: When I have let people know when they are being a little intrusive, any negativity to my name and anything else regarding the situation has washed away within a week, however, when someone has avoided me and I have been forced to be clingy myself, well, let’s just say that it’s been years since and I can’t even envision a scenario where I will ever even share a look with these people ever again; which one is more appealing to you? At the moment it would seem that people prefer years and years of tension and ill-loathing.

So finally, a piece of advice, coming from somebody that can empathise with both parties, silence can hurt and scar a lot deeper than being straight-out ever could, as long as it’s done correctly. Just know that, in order to avoid questions, you keep them answered, and if you don’t want to ever pick up your phone again with ten missed calls on the display, then you answer that first one. Its simple logic, so grow some fucking fortitude and don’t be so horrible to those that enjoy your company.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

You're Not Alone

Usually I wouldn't post media and such but this video, although just a promotional for The Biography Channel, is inexcusable in excellence. Artistically it lays out a good fraction of the stages, milestones and water-cooler conversations that have occurred within recent western history, be it death, revolution or petty gossip; it's a beautiful demonstration of those that have made some sort of impression in the last fifty years.