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Subject:Eternal Sunshine
Time:12:58 am
I did a post on my new blog tonight about Eternal Sunshine, since I watched it over the weekend, but I felt a little disjointed while writing it, so I want to put some more digital ink to digital paper.

In writing that post, I got locked up a little bit reading things online about the movie. In particular, about events in the script that weren't used and scenes that were eventually cut from the film. In one scene, Mary (Kirsten Dunst) has returned to the Lacuna office after finding out that she had undergone the memory-erasing procedure and starts listening to the tape. This much is in the movie. There is a deleted scene where she's listening to the tape and it reveals that she had an abortion. The scene itself (which is included in the DVD set) isn't particularly strong; she listens to it, gasps, rewinds the tape, and listens to it again. It's a heavy-handed moment in a film otherwise built on subtlety and nuance. I can see why they cut it. But knowing that it was a deleted scene, is it still part of the story?

Likewise, it is said that an alternate version of the script shows Clementine (Kate Winslet) at the end of the movie, going back to Lacuna again only to find Mary behind the desk again (she had quit earlier in the film). Apparently Mary revealed to Clementine that she had continually been going back to Lacuna to erase Joel (Jim Carrey) time and time again. How much can we take from that when discussing the movie? The movie leaves it open-ended, though I was talking to Jenny about the final moments before the credits, Clementine and Joel are running along what I take to be the snowy Montauk beach, and as they run away from the camera there is a sudden jump-cut to the middle of their run and a second jump-cut just before the screen fades to white. Is that a sign?

Eternal Sunshine is an interesting case of, to misappropriate a phrase, the book reading you. It is often commented about the movie that how people read it or consider its ending really tells a lot about the individual making the statement.

I want to believe that fate did not play a determining role in Eternal Sunshine. I want to believe that Joel, though he is quiet and reserved and at times not very likable, is something of an everyman and that his resistance to the erasing was not a superhuman power-of-love reaction.

To that end, I want to explain a little bit about my position. Considering they work anti-chronologically, and the negative emotions occurred mostly near the end, then by the time you've reached the middle you have lost the negative memories and just about anyone would react in a fashion more or less similar to Joel. Joel opens his eyes twice. The first time goes undetected by the Lacuna operators, but the second occurs with Dr. Mierzwiak (Tom Wilkinson) present. He notices that it was unusual that Joel could open his eyes, but it was not particularly problematic, as he gave Joel a drug injection to keep him under.

Okay, at this point I really need to get sleepin' so I can get back out there tomorrow. Maybe I'll post more somewhat disjointed stuff here before posting back again on the other blog. I'm trying to keep the quality of writing at a higher-than-casual level, but I'm a little frustrated that my subjects keep coming back to (if I'm a little hard on myself) a sort of self-indulgent level.
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Subject:Started a New Blog
Time:03:41 pm
I just started a new blog. I'm not quite sure how or if I'm going to use it and livejournal, or if I'm simply going to put everything on there. In any event, check it out. I wrote a nice long post.

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Subject:Peanuts (but not the Schulz kind)
Time:09:54 pm
I cooked dinner tonight and had the computer with me in the kitchen when I had the following conversation with Emily:

me: I just found my can of peanuts on the counter hereCollapse )
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Subject:On Shooting 800
Time:12:51 am
I shot 800 for three games about a week-and-a-half ago now. I've gone and bowled a bit since (9 games), and given that I thought I would take a moment to reflect on it.

Here's the thing. I talk a bit and do some math here and there about the probability of shooting a 300 game. Shooting 800 is harder, by pretty much all accounts. You really can't miss your shot at all. Not only that, you have to be lucky insofar as that you avoid bad luck. To fend off bad luck for an extended period of time? That's hard! So hard, in fact, that while I sit and think a little bit about the perfect game from time to time, the very idea of 800 is pretty much completely off my radar. Even the series where I've shot perfect games I haven't had a chance; I think my highest previous series was 773, which was in practice.

The other thing is that 300 is constantly staring you in the face as you go. Say you have the first four or five in a row. You look up and can very quickly see that and now you're thinking "hey, I'm almost halfway there!" The idea of 800 isn't even a real possibility until you reach the third game. After two games I did a little mental math in my head to see what it would take to get there, and I was rolling well enough to do it, but knowing that I needed a 265? Well that's it, isn't it? I mean, To shoot 260+ you are basically allowed one miss.

"One miss" isn't exactly the right phrase. When you're in an excellent groove, missing isn't your worry. Your worry is throwing a great shot that somehow fails to knock over that last damn pin. But at the same time, you can't worry about that, because your job is to throw the best shot you can. You can't control the pins falling or not, exactly, all you can control is what you do to the ball. If you're not careful, you get caught up in the trap of over-analysis; "the ball didn't react quite right on that shot, so maybe if I tweak this little thing just a bit..." and drive yourself nuts. I think I had to stop once or twice and just tell myself "trust it." Even then, as soon as I release the ball, I start thinking "Oh God, did I do enough with that one? I don't think it came off my hand exactly right," but sure enough I was in the right spot and they fell.

I'm trying to come up with the proper comparison to that series that would ring true for everybody, and I'm not quite sure I can come up with it. There's a lot of stuff at play here. It's not like getting an A in a hard class, because you're probably working really hard to get that A from day one as your goal. That feeling I described as I release a shot isn't totally unlike giving your answer to Regis Philbin on Who Wants to be a Millionaire only to have to wait five minutes for him to say if you got it right, but you don't get to choose to stop like on that show, you just keep going. It might be similar to winning a local poker tournament that gets you entry to the World Series of Poker and then getting to the final table, but I'm not sure that's a salient example.

In any event, I may not have been perfect last week, but I was DAMN good.

Now I get to decide what ring I want.
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Subject:That thing
Time:12:19 am
So that thing about bowling that I mention in the post below? I shot a total of 800 exactly for three games on Tuesday night. That's a ridiculous 266.6 average. That's 29 strikes in one evening. At that rate of strikes, a person should bowl a perfect game just slightly more often than 1 in 10 games.

It is worth noting that an 800 series is more rare than a perfect game (300). It is also worth noting that I get a ring for it.

This is what my night looked like on the scoreboard:

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Time:12:12 am
Something clicked in the last couple of days, and now it just won't stop.

One of the things I appreciate about my new position is that it has me working my hours in the land of the living. I start work at 9:00am, I get to leave at 5:30, and I actually get paid 15 minute breaks for the first time in ever. It bums me out a little bit that I don't get my foodtimes paid and that if I take a break that's NOT within my 15-minute slot I know I've got a clock counting my time, but so far I haven't seem to run into trouble with that yet despite drinking upwards of a liter of water each of the past several days as I sit at my desk.

So now I have all this time after, say, 6:30pm, that I can do basically anything with. So what do I do? Well, of course I'm bowling. I have the Tuesday night league I've been a part of for the last two seasons and now I'm also joining my mom's team on Wednesday nights probably a bit more than half-time. I have a bowling story to tell, actually, but that will come later.

I got a phone call from a guy at church this summer asking if I wanted to take part in a play. I said sure, but I also noted with him that I could possibly be moving far distances this summer, and I could not commit to taking part. Well, he called me on Monday. I haven't left town (nor do I think I will be for the foreseeable future), and the guy who had charge of the role he was interested in having me take was starting to get all nervous-and-flaky. So what did I do? I took it, of course.

So now I'm working five days a week, helping out with Seattle Pacific University Volleyball and Soccer whenever I can, playing in a fall baseball league that (thankfully for scheduling purposes) only plays on weekends, bowling no fewer than six games a week, and rehearsing a play. This is going to be interesting.

Is it particularly smart for me to get involved with acting? Well, look at that sentence above. I'm probably pretty dumb to want to do it, but I'm starting to think that this is just the mode of my life. Go go go go go go go and I'll rest when I'm dead or something. Sure it can be stressful, especially when I want to fit something else in, but if I continue to work days instead of nights, it should be a little bit easier to fit things in.

Emily sent me an online questionnaire a little bit ago. (found here) It is directly about video games, but I found that perhaps my traits are a little bit more wide-reaching into how I live life. See, the questionnaire called me a Conqueror, that I "like defeating impossibly difficult foes" and such. I'm not sure if "foes" is quite accurate, but I relish the ability to do seemingly impossible things like Fuck You Tetris or defeating Tetris Attack on Super Hard without the use of a continue or running two college clubs simultaneously. I recall that even in high school, I found the period where I was guiding the Garfield bowling team to 2nd place in league, then playing/practicing baseball, preparing/performing Bird In My Head, recovering from relationship stress and getting into colleges to be incredibly stressful but simultaneously incredibly rewarding. The key is to find things that are rewarding.

I joked recently that I was a shark, because if I stopped moving I died. The questionnaire noted that if the Conqueror were an animal, it would be a shark. I am amused.

I think these next few weeks are going to be insane... perhaps even more insane than usual, but I think I'm going to enjoy them.
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Subject:Some nostalgia
Time:06:14 am
I'm really digging this google+ thing. I like its interface more than facebook's, but facebook has this thing called "interia" that's a little hard to fight against.

One of the things I really appreciate on facebook is photos. While it bothers me a little bit to actually SEE MYSELF AGE by looking at photos on facebook (especially with Emily joking about the two gray hairs she's seen on my head), it serves as a nice reminder of where I've been, which has always been pretty important to me. Perhaps I'm too attached to a narrative here, but I frequently like to connect the person I am now to the person I was then to the person I am becoming in the future. It does make me sad sometimes that I don't do some of the little gimmicky things I used to do with daily haikus or frequent use of the SMILE sign, but I like to think I'm still that person and I live that out on a regular basis.

In any event, I just went through all the pictures on facebook again and it's making me realize that 2008 is starting to get farther in the rear-view mirror. The people I knew in college are becoming similar to the people I knew in high school in that I feel like the friends are becoming fewer but those that I get to keep are deep friendships. Also, those folks are more geographically disparate; while people will leave and respond to facebook messages, that's a far cry from once-a-week Hurricane runs or once-every-couple-of-months parties.

Maybe it's just because a lot of stuff is going on right now in my life, but right now, right this second, I want to take a trip to visit a whole lot of you. Maybe it's time to actually plan out that Commune Reunion we talked about a couple years ago?

Also, I have a funny way of looking back at things and completely forgetting the negative parts... or at least completely forgetting them for just a moment. I like to think that's a personal strength.

When I got the car that I have now, I needed to end the era of the Royal Navy. There was a lot of emotional baggage that the Buick represented. It feels strange to post this in such a public forum, but it's not like there's any secret here: there were times with the Trio that were easily among the best times and best and most meaningful memories in my life. There were also times that were among the worst and were damaging to my ability to create relationships. Now that I've removed myself from much of the negative, I really miss the positive.

Anyway, I think what I really want to do is raise a metaphorical glass right now in appreciation of all of you. I wouldn't be who I am without you, and if I can say this without being boastful, I like to think who I am is pretty cool.
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Subject:Things is crazy, yo
Time:05:26 am
It's been so long since I logged on to LJ last that the "restore from draft" is a post about the last week of bowling league, which was early May.

Things have been very hectic recently. I'm not sure they deserve to be as hectic as I sometimes feel they are, but my time commitments are something of a jumbled mess. Or, to put it more directly, EVERYTHING CONFLICTS WITH EVERYTHING ELSE.

Without working myself into too much of a tizzy, I should note that I picked up a tertiary job with a minor league baseball team up a ways north as an emcee. I get to go around the ballpark with a microphone, get people to chant, clap, and cheer, and then run contests in-between innings. Sometimes I sign autographs. Of course, that conflicts with my secondary job at the women's basketball team where I am (increasingly) responsible for playing audio during games (and working from home to ensure that those cuts are clean and otherwise good). When I'm not doing either of those, I am frequently working at the bowl or otherwise with Emily.

Today I finally took some "me-time." I stayed in bed an hour after I woke up and perused the Internet, managed an hour of basketball-audio work in the 4-5 hours I was home, did the basketball work, and came home to putter around the Internet some more. Trouble is, I've been puttering since I got home at about 10:30pm and here it is after 5:00am! I've been reading my regular websites, checking out flickr, and looking at a pokemon version of wikipedia. Not exactly an efficient use of my time, especially as I have to be up and at the bowl for work at 11:00am, but perhaps it was needed?

I've been stressing out a lot lately. Stressing out mostly about things like finding a new job so I can reduce conflicts in my schedule, building a scoreboard for the baseball league I'm playing in this summer, getting business cards designed and printed, getting my laundry done, the growing pile of mess that's accumulating in my room/apartment, the fact that I haven't seen many of my close friends in a while, and the clock.

Right now? Right now I strangely feel really good. I see sunlight coming in through my window, which would normally annoy me, and I feel okay. I mean, I know I'm going to pay for it tomorrow, because I have to be at work at 11:00am and then leave at 4:00pm and drive safely for at least a half-hour so I can start at the ballgame at 6:00pm until something like 10:30pm. But I'm not worried about that right now? I don't think I'm zen about it or anything, but I think I needed this?
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Subject:Season's End
Time:03:27 pm
The end of one bowling season marks the start of another.

Going into the final week, my average was 211.95. The bowler directly behind me was at 211.71. I was watching his progress all night to see what I needed to do to hold the honor of Highest Average for my league.

Then he went and bowled a 223 and a 257 his first two games. I didn't do too badly myself, shooting 226 and 194, but I knew I had some pins to make up during the final game. He finished before me, so I could do the math. By the time he got done, I was partway through my final game. He had averaged 212.2 for the league. In order to beat him, I figured, I needed to average 212.3 -- which is to say, I needed to shoot better than 249 on my last game.

I had started game 3 with the first three strikes, left and picked up a 10-pin in the 4th, and struck three more times going into the 8th frame when I figured out what I needed to do to take high average when I took my first bad shot.

I yanked the ball to the left, missing the 3-pin completely and leaving a 3-6-10 spare. It was a relatively simple spare and I picked it up and re-did my math. I could still shoot 256. That's cutting it close, but I'd been throwing strikes all game, I could still do it... but I absolutely had to strike the 9th frame, because if I didn't I could only top out at 245.

I left a 10-pin in the 9th and let out a sort of frustrated grimace-yell. No words, just a noise like Charlie Brown after a line drive past the pitcher's mound undressed him again. I'd led the league in average for all but three weeks over the course of the season, and I lost it? I went over to find my opponent and congratulated him.

I picked up the spare and bowled the 10th for pride with the knowledge that I had lost sort of quietly festering. I threw three strikes. Of course. It always seems like you nail the strikes when it doesn't matter anymore how exactly you do.

Out of curiosity I grabbed my scratch paper and pencil and did the math again; I now had 20,376 total pins over 96 games bowled for an average of... what's this? 212.25 pins per game? You're kidding. I checked it again. Same result. I had over-estimated the amount of pins I needed to take High Average and I ended up winning it anyway. Upon this realization I felt like a dick for congratulating my opponent for beating me when he had not actually done so.

Do you realize how small a margin is of 5 hundredths of a pin is over the course of 96 games? Let me put it this way: if I had instead shot 20,371 pins, just five pins lower, my average would have been 212.1979. Sure it would have rounded to 212.20, but my opponent had that figure before rounding.

I took League High Average by 5 pins.


Yesterday's scores didn't count for league average, but they did count as a tournament. I shot 713 for the tournament's three games and expect to make a little money. Over my last 9 games bowled at West Seattle, I have averaged a ridiculous 236.11 and thrown strikes 69.8% of the time. The chances of 12 in a row at that clip is 1.33%. Better than 1 in 100. Of course, I'm not going to be able to keep that up long term, but I have actually shot a perfect game in that section of time. The odds of me doing that were only about 12%.
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Subject:Let's see.
Time:11:42 am
I haven't posted an entry in quite a while. Usually if I don't post an entry, it's because some kind of drama thing is going on and I don't want to say anything online that I'm going to regret or that is going to get a strong rebuff. This time is not like that; I'm just out of the habit.

So what is there to note? I have a girlfriend named Emily who I met through OKCupid. Although we have varied and different interests, we are very similar people. We both are part of the rare breed that LIKE customer service, for example. She gives really really good hugs, we have similar senses of silliness, and has been all-around really great.

That's the biggest of news, but in other things... I shot 300 again, achieved the highest average in my bowling league by .05 of a pin, started playing a little baseball ... although apparently me playing baseball is once again in-question for this summer, I'm applying for jobs but got rejected from a part-time job doing what I want to do that has made me seriously question my marketability, am doing a good amount of baseball research on the side because my boss got me in on his fantasy baseball team and I'm trying to figure out who we should trade for or pick up from the unchosen players. I'm also going to design new business cards soon.
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[icon] The thing about this is...
View:Recent Entries.
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