Writer, Christian, bibliophile, musician, generalist.
1. I am currently watching Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.
I am astounded at the lack of physical realism. A make-shift seesaw causes one character to fly ~20 feet in the air, some paint on a concrete floor simulates a semi-frictionless plane, and there are no people on a New York City sidewalk at around 10PM.
1990s neo-slapstick aside, this is a great movie.
2. I was saying last night that I wish I knew more in the sciences. Maybe I’ll take an online course or something. I’m sure I could arrange that through NCC.
3. Sometimes, life feels like constantly waiting in line for something or other. It’s nice to always have something to look forward to, but I’d like to live for a while without constantly looking at the horizon.
4. Tänään, minä opin jotkut suomalainen.
I’m not quite sure if that is correct, but this is day 1.
5. Dear apartment,
I’m glad you’re feeling warmer. I could see my breath earlier. It was time. Here’s to a cold winter.
1. Still not sure what happened last night with my post not posting.
Actually, I just figured out exactly what happened. Tumblr UI switched the “Post” and “Cancel” buttons. That’s a dirty, dirty trick.
2. Tonight was wonderful. Double date and a long walk in freshly fallen snow. I can’t really ask for more.
3. I’m feeling exhausted. The days keep rolling by and I feel a bit caught up in them. Slowing down is not my strong suit.
4. Dear tomorrow,
please go quickly and mercifully.
1. So I just realized that last night’s post didn’t post for some reason.
2. You didn’t miss much. In the second thought, I spent a while bashing John Rutter for being bland and unimaginative.
3. Dear posts,
1. Tonight, I abandoned the futile practice of finding more productive ways to be productive and pretty well just vegged out.
I made a really good dinner (Shakshuka and cucumber salad) while watching one of the many great DC animated films, followed almost immediately by Jet Li’s The Warlords. The latter film was in Cantonese with subtitles, thus ensuring I had to keep looking at the screen in order to know what was going on, and couldn’t multitask. That was key.
That said, I still had no idea what happened in that movie. Really, nothing. Three men became blood brothers, and then over the course of the movie, they weren’t anymore. Pretty violent, too. There was a lot of chopping off of limbs in surprising ways.
I guess this was also one of my first evenings to myself in a long while, though. It was a much-needed recharge, especially considering the next couple of weeks.
2. I went to the gym for a second day in a row this morning, and it felt so good, I’m really looking forward to going again tomorrow morning. It’s nice having a gym so close to my apartment again. The only current problem is the 16 degree walk to my car a block away. But I’ll hopefully get past that.
Managed to log several miles on the elliptical.
3. Dear fingers and toes,
please don’t go numb on me. I kind of need you. I promise I’ll warm you up soon.
1. I think the feeling of not being centered that I was writing about last night runs deeper than I thought. It’s affecting my life in so many different ways. My mind hasn’t been nearly as sharp over the last month or two as it has been. I forget things so easily, and I’m easily distracted. In fact, I just switched to another tab in the middle of that last sentence. Multi-tasking is killing my brain.
Most of what I do is killing my brain. I’ve spent so many hours stuffing things in there that it’s basically overclocked. I try to be good at so much and use my intelligence for so much that the well runs dry. I’ve not been looking at myself as a finite resource.
I simultaneously want to show off how smart I am, and also have the realization that I don’t know everything (or in my eyes, enough). But the mark of true intelligence isn’t how much you know, it’s how you use what you know. And I haven’t been focusing on that. I want to be “well-rounded”, whatever that means, which is much easier to hone. I love the idea of interdisciplinarity, but again I focus on the information therein, not always the relationship between. It makes me feel like a fraud.
Believe it or not, puns make me feel truly intelligent; I think that’s what draws me to them. One of my mentors told me it takes some of the highest functioning the brain is capable of to come up with good puns, because it uses so many different parts of the brain. So I don’t hold back. I let them fly. I know it annoys the shit out of people, but it keeps me sane.
I had a really great conversation with my mom this evening about this over-indulgence of information. It’s not working for me any more. And I don’t think it’s simply about learning to do it better. I need to be okay with not knowing some things. From an early age, I’m told I was always alert, always afraid of missing something. I think that still rings true.
I need to give my brain a real opportunity to actually check out. Exercise seems to help (although I still listen to podcasts while doing it). I’d love to pick up a new hobby, but I have an awful tendency to just plug it into Don’t Break the Chain and find the best ways to make it truly productive. It never fails. And yet after a while, it always gets to feeling a little monotonous, a little meaningless. Except for this, for some odd reason.
I would love to find a hobby that can produce things, but I need to somehow fight the urge to make it “productive”.
2. A strange thing happened as I was typing that last thought. My typing got ahead of my conscious brain. That was a little scary.
3. Dear brain,
I’m sorry you’re feeling abused. Please don’t hate me. I kind of need you to work well. Can we figure something out?
1. My writing, speaking, and really even thinking have been a disaster as of late. I struggle to form coherent sentences, I find myself stumbling over words, and I’m just not saying all that’s there.
I think it stems from the fact that i’ve also been feeling a little off-balance as of late. I seem to have lost my center. Part of it was this audition today [which went very well, by the way], and part of it has just been the unstableness of the last two weeks, what with all the holiday travel. I need to regain my footing.
Writing these every night has been a struggle (as evidenced by the meager length of the last few posts). I set this up so that I wouldn’t feel bad about writing the bare minimum (which is something), but I end up feeling guilty anyway. I haven’t been putting as much time in with writing lately, and that’s unfortunate. I keep saying to myself, “Oh, I’ll do it when [insert event] is over.” But then I never do. That list of things includes:
- the recital I’d like to give early next year
- my next poetry project
- that quote blog
- and many more
My mind has been wandering a lot recently; I’ve been very forgetful, and not too present. Even in praying the daily office in the mornings, my mind wanders through it. I’m hoping increasing my exercise output will help with this.
2. As mentioned before, I don’t feel like I could have done anything better in today’s audition. I think it was a success, as far as auditions are concerned. Now the waiting game commences.
3. I realize it’s only an hour, but the Eastern time change has mess with my sleep schedule something awful.
4. Dear New York,
I can see why people like you. But I just don’t think you’re for me. Chicago feels like home now. That was an odd way to find myself feeling as I stepped off the plane tonight; I wasn’t quite expecting it, but when I saw those city lights through the clouds, I felt comfort.
So you can keep to yourself, NY. You’re damn expensive anyway.
1. This was yet another of my long travel days in life. I suppose tomorrow will be as well, technically. I’m writing this from Flushing, NY in an area of the city where almost no one is frequently speaking English. It’s pretty cool. Most of the signs are in Chinese.
Unexpected, although staying in the Asiatic Hotel, I think I had a good clue right there.
2. Audition tomorrow! Hoping for some good singing.
3. Dear voice,
Let’s have a good showing tomorrow, yes?
1. I’m 36 posts away from hitting 1000. This is, I think, still the most successful writing project I’ve ever undertaken. Plus, as I’ve ascertained over the last week or so, there are still people reading it. That blows my mind.
Thanks for coming to read, everybody! I appreciate that you stop by.
2. Going to New York tomorrow for an audition. A bit anxious; not nervous, really. But I’ve never really spent any significant time there.
Of course, I guess I’ll still be able to say that later this week, seeing as how I’ll be getting back on Wednesday night.
3. Had a lovely dinner tonight with some friends and spent some quality time chatting about anything and everything. It’s always nice when conversations loop and twist and reconvene in unexpected ways.
4. Dear toes,
yeah, you’re numb. Get over it. You’re also under the covers, so you have no excuse.
1. I wish I was writing more on these at night, but I’ve been so exhausted this past week that I haven’t felt like it. I’m not really sure what my deal is. I just can’t seem to get enough sleep.
2. I had a great few days back home, but I’m glad to be back in Chicago, too. I think I’m starting to love this city.
I made it back in record time. 5:20, with breaks. I deserve a trophy.
3. I have a lot to accomplish this week; here’s hoping I get it all done.
4. I haven’t been writing a lot about ideas lately. I hope I can change that once my sleep catches up. I think I’m going to bed early again tonight.
5. Dear rusty nails,
I should never drink a double from a pint glass, even if the bartender gives it to me because she’s never heard of you before. Rocks glasses are the way to go. I mean, cheers; but that’s a lot of whiskey.
Note: Contemporary services can be great.
Just make sure the content is actually contemporary.
I can’t not reblog this.
1. This has been a nice trip home, I’d have to say. I didn’t get nearly as much done as I’d have liked to, but I spent time with a lot of people who are important to me, and slept in a bunch.
I’m not as excited about that latter fact.
I went to one of my closest friend’s graduate recital tonight and was really happy to hear her sing again. It’d been nearly three years, so the difference was definitely noticeable. Same voice, but richer.
2. I can’t seem to sleep enough lately. I think my body senses the downtime.
3. Dear Church,
Happy new year!
1. I have been doing a horrible job this week of not sleeping in. I’ve slept past 8:30 twice this week so far. I just can’t seem to get enough sleep.
I have a tendency to burn the candle at both ends. I should probably be asleep right now, but I’m writing instead. I have a feeling this will all catch up with me some day.
2. I got to play with my friends’ dog tonight.
In other news, I still really want a dog.
3. Dear fatigue,
why are you a thing? You should just leave. I don’t need you around.
1. There is a certain pleasure I take the return that I don’t always take in arrival. I’m so time-oriented and worried about being late and missing something that I don’t always take my time and focus before I arrive somewhere. But when I leave a place I feel this kind of freedom; an expanse of space. It’s nice.
I wish I didn’t worry so much about punctuality, but I guess it’s better than not worrying about it at all.
2. Today’s Thanksgiving was a great one. Spent time with the family all day, ate great food, took a long walk, and drank some wine.
Found some tiny yellow berries of some variety in the pasture growing in this one spot in the middle. I wish I knew what they were. They smell horrible.
That spot in the pasture has always puzzled me. I’ve always thought it was a sinkhole, but I’m not sure that’s right now. I do know that it is lower than anywhere else in the pasture and that completely different kinds of plants grow in that one spot than in the rest of the pasture. It’s times like these I wish I had a biology degree.
3. Dear White Castle,
On the way home from some places, late at night, I often think it might be a good idea to visit one of your restaurants. This is always a bad idea.
I think I’m to the point where I need a sign in my car that says, “White Castle never turns out well! Say no!
But your cheeseburgers are still great in their own way.
1. Tonight, I am thankful for a new moon, a crisp night, and stars to gaze upon. I spent some time just now in my favorite spot in the 16 degree Missouri evening counting constellations and craning my neck heavenward.
I would gladly trade the city lights for more stars if given the chance. If only there were a way to see them from Chicago. The city lights are just too much for theirs; they don’t stand a chance.
I wish I could take Orion back with me, but I’m lucky if I can eve see his belt from where I live most of the time.
I love being in the city in most instances, but the natural drawback is that it separates me from the wild. I think we need a wildness every once in a while. Not the kind of wildness that Kerouac talks about, but rather a rejection of man-made rule and an exploration of a more natural order. People raised in the city their entire lives seem to live within that structure of trying to do everything “right”; but a simpler answer is to just do. If life is lived following rules, one must only do just enough to get by to be acceptable.
Jesus has this peculiar way of telling people to do things. Whereas the typical human response to resisting sin would be to try very hard not to perform that sin. But Christ takes the approach of telling people to go and do; give, walk, make. Statistically, the more we think about not doing something, the likelier we are to do it.
But that doing I was talking about before takes a certain wildness, wonderful in nature. The possibility of failure is present, but held at bay by faith and will. Wildness needs order, but perhaps not the order we assign to it.
2. I overslept this morning, which is a rarity. I felt tired and groggy pretty well all day. I don’t think it was beneficial for me. I’m still trying to learn my new phone; I guess I’d forgotten to hit ‘save’.
3. I love the feel of holidays in my family. I don’t know what it is, but it always feel special, golden. I’m glad I’m here for Thanksgiving this year; last year, I wasn’t so lucky.
4. Dear beer,
nice to see you again. I hope my body isn’t mad at you tomorrow.
1. I officially accomplished everything on my to-do list today. I still have yet to submit grades, but that may be a task for tomorrow.
My car is in good shape, I finished A Farewell to Arms, and time was spent with others.
A Farewell to Arms is one of the reasons I absolutely love Hemingway. He has an uncanny ability to make interesting the most basic elements of our world, all the while weaving in profound bits of mystery and human nature. I always marvel at the similarities between his and Steinbeck’s work, but they are so close in philosophy; even if their styles are polar opposites.
I could write at length how beautiful the ending is, but I can’t knowingly put out such a spoiler. All I can say is read it. Wow. I was in tears.
I had a book lover’s moment as I was reading the last chapter, though. I happened to be in St. Louis Bread Co. (Panera) and the man next to me decided to take a 20 minute phone call with his daughter in which he spoke very loudly with an annoyingly high larynx. I had to put my book down for a bit and just stare angrily at him until he stopped. I couldn’t keep reading and risk not allowing the book to have its full emotion effect. I think that could also be another instance of wanting to just experience negative emotion.
2. I can already feel the next few days moving quickly, if today is any standard. Man, time moves fast.
3. Dear Chicago,
stay warm for about another week, okay?