Archive | December, 2009

For Glory…For Science

31 Dec

THE EXPERIMENT:

If you are reading this post, please leave a comment with the name of a vegetable, followed by a number.

This is for SCIENCE.

Thank you

930pm on a Wednesday

30 Dec

Octopus gizzards
Strewn across the cavern floor
But to no avail

The tremendous weight
Of last week’s Catch of the Day
Now begins to rot

But like the Old Man
as he battled his own fish
Its absence calms me

Onwards and upwards
But now it’s on my own terms
And the bridge is built

2009; A retrospective

29 Dec

Also 2006, 2007, and 2008, really.

See, I keep ‘diaries’ or books of each year. I have been doing this since about year 10, when I realised that rather than scribbling in the margins of my school books, I should keep a separate book free for ideas and drawings and random stuff.
(Please excuse the webcam photos…scanner so far away…other end of the house…)

From oldest to newest, my astounding collection of ideas.

2006 was year 10. Flicking back through this book, I found a dialogue-plan for an AI computer thing I was programming, the first few mentions of Max Krypt: Evil Overlord (who would later force an art teacher to flee the mainland…the fascist wench…), overwhelming evidence that I had a crush on someone nicknamed ‘Anime Boy’, and a drawing of a penguin with a chainsaw.

Whoa, that penguin has a chainsaw!

2007’s book had a better cover…a boy having his head devoured by a butterfly. This was the year I befriended someone who could draw, began my Alex Fishbowl comics, and, most importantly, discovered haiku.

Due to the poor quality of this picture, I shall provide a brief excerpt of the haiku on this page.

I think haikus rock
Should I write another page?
Yes, I think I should

Now I’m in English
Mrs Johnson is speaking
Today is Friday

It’s cloudy outside
I must begin working now
Haiku writing stops

Now writing restarts
The rain has gone away now
It’s almost lunchtime

Apples are tasty
Green ones are by far the best
Eat them with peelers

Koi fish are pretty
They swim around gleefully
Okay, that was random

Lunchtime is soon
The classroom is abuzz, yes
With debating girls

My story book gone
Instead, a book of haiku
My candle dies fast

Melting pink candles
The wax spreads like Vegemite
I’ll burn this house down

That would be a shame
To set alight my bedroom
One shouldn’t tease flames

Will I pick a word
And write more random poems?
Yes, I think I shall

Aardvarck, I cannot spell
I will try again next line…
I think it’s….oh dear!

It’s not in my book!
My dictionary failed
I will now burn it

And the pyro-poetry continues for at least another page and a half. Nothing compared to the legendary haiku project undertaken by a friend of mine… I might find a copy and with her permission, provide some excerpts from that too.
Skipping merrily onto year 12 now. The most striking feature is an attempt to teach myself Japanese. This was a pipe-dream of a friend and I that lasted at least a week or two.

Learning a language by writing characters over and over... This was destined to be a success, no?

Year 12 also saw the birth of an obsession with steampunk, humour in randomness (my drawing of the TARDIS landing on Harry Potter is a classic) and integral calculus. I’m amazed I got into uni, really.

This year’s book has been different. I treated it more as a diary than a notebook, by which I mean, I wrote due dates and course notes in it. That said, my lovely green notebook had its moments. Some arty sketching, some unusual metaphors, and a couple of strange ‘to-do’ lists.

I recognise that the quality of this picture makes reading the dot points a bit tricky, but I think you can manage to get the gist of it, dear reader, if you try hard enough. The little stick-man is saying “I’m so indie”, if you were wondering.

The final image I will share with you this evening is something drawn in my 2009 notebook by a great friend and author of Thank You for Your Thyme. It is a likeness of another friend, and there are contributions from a number of lovely people scattered across it. I may scan this one later because it is awesome.

The "you're" thing is a meme now. It's totally meant to be like that.

I think this last drawing makes me smile because it really showed how much has happened this year. I’ve met some fantastic people, learnt a lot, been through some rough patches, but for the most part, I’ve had a really great year, and if next year is even close to as good, I’ll be truly blessed.

No haiku today
I think you have had enough
Of that nonsense…oh.

Darling, is this love?

23 Dec

Several important things today. The first is music, of course.

I’ve been indulging in a bit of a mellow phase with my listening, and I encourage you, dear reader, to do the same. Specifically, you should investigate Elbow (The Seldom Seen Kid is one of my new favourite albums, especially this track), Bright Eyes (Cassadaga, try this for a sample) and Whitley (who I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, but I only just listened to his newest album, Go Forth, Find Mammoth and I fell in love with this song).

Also, if you have last.fm, please add me. I’m new to it all, and I’d like some friends! The lists and play counts on my account at the moment are hilarious; the only music I’ve been listening to on my laptop of late was during study, so it shows my preferred study music. ^_^

Next topic! AVATAR!

Yes, this time I mean the FILM by JAMES CAMERON starring SAM WORTHINGTON and ZOE SALDANA. (I’m just filling my post with keywords people tend to search for a lot… page views skyrocket when I do this. It’s amusing)

So, the thing is, everyone was talking it up, so when I went to see it (in 2D) the other night, I was determined to dislike it, as part of my ‘rebelling against society, being individual’ thing. I hate to say it, but I loved it. And now I shall rant about it, like everyone else.

Sure, most of the characters were as 2D as the screening I went to, and the plot was quite standard of the genre, and the script was filled with typical action movie quips…but that’s not the point. That’s not even close to the point. That’s far, far away from the point.

The point is that it was epic in the true sense of the word. It was visual, and immersive, and emotional, and amazing. I figured out how Mr Cameron did it, though. I saw through his little game. He filled the movie with things that I like. Yes, me specifically. Okay, it could probably be a little more general that just me, but I reckon he was trying especially to win me over with it. Well played, James. Well played. Here is a list of things he put in the movie so I’d like it;

  • Flying – that’s probably a general one. Humans want to fly. Na’vi have access to flying critters. One point to Avatar.
  • Blue – I like blue quite a bit. It’s soothing, and strange to see skin that shade. Na’vi also have glowing freckles. As a redhead, I’m prone to freckling, so glowing ones are almost as desirable as flying for me. Why? Because the next thing I like is…
  • Glowing things – Yes, I’m crazy about things that glow in the dark. Phosphorescence fills me with glee. My room glows thanks to the several hundred glowing stars/sheep/butterflies I’ve glued to the walls and ceiling. This is my favourite lamp, and it would seem James Cameron used it to model a lot of his flora (and fauna, awesomely enough).

  • Romance – Yes, I’m a sap for a sweet love story. I think the thing that appeals to people about the Na’vi society is the idea of ‘bonding’ and having ONE mate, ONE flying critter, etc. The connection is deep and meaningful and it’s perfect in commitment and loyalty. I think people like that, deep down, even if they don’t think they do.
  • The Internet – Dude, the whole planet was the internet. Pandora reconciles our desire to be connected to everything in the ‘internet’ sense, and also in a spiritual sense. Instant information, links to the past, comfort and family.

Am I reading too much into this? Probably. I possibly only liked it for the explosions. Mmm, explosions.

So Avatar gets a good review from me.

Happy [holiday of your choice, as long as good lunch/dinner is involved] and have a great end of December!

A world of ideals,
And soft turquoise complexions,
And freaking tails.

O_O

Yeah, I can’t just give you a link to ONE Elbow song…have this one too. Gosh they’re good.

Mango Trypping: Chapter 4

18 Dec

In association with Thank You for Your Thyme

Chapter 4 – Sneak Attack

In which the plot inevitably commences

“What was that…?” Captain Halloran was wide eyed, and spoke softly. The deep echo of the noise had faded, and everything was still and silent. The helmsman tapped the captain on the shoulder.
“I reckon you should see this, Cap’n.”
Joseph followed the man to the lower deck and saw it immediately. There was a hole the size of a beach ball in the iron hull. The rim of the hole was glowing white hot, molten iron dribbling down the side of the Skysnail. The crew had gathered, shaken by the thunderous crash that had hit the ship along with whatever had punched the hole.

“The starboard power wheel is down, Cap’n. The blast took out the main feeder.”
Joseph growled, furious, and scanned the sky for the attacker. There was nothing but clear, empty blue as far as he could see.
“Did anyone see where –” Captain Halloran’s question was cut short by another crash, bigger than the first. The Skysnail was tossed to one side. The two rear sails were suddenly aflame. The flame retardant envelope, thankfully, withstood the heat until the sails had dropped, like leaves curling up as they blazed. The smallest sail was ripped off intact by the blow, and tumbled lazily like a poorly made paper plane through the thick cloud, toward Earth. Four crew members followed, though their landings would not be as gentle.
Joseph was clinging to the metal guard rail on the now much higher port side of the deck. He saw Julian struggling to hold the door frame to the cabin.
“What’s happening!?” yelled Julian over the metallic wrenching and cacophony of shrill grating as pipes and cables twisted against each other.
“Someone wants us out of the sky!”Joseph yelled back.

A third blast punched through the deck, and this time, Joseph saw the projectile. Except, it wasn’t exactly a projectile. It was something long and writhing and as thick as a tree trunk. Joseph’s eyes widened as he watched the fleshy, pink tentacle wrap around one of the cables that joined the envelope to the hull. Julian yelled as a second tentacle scraped past him and plunged into the cabin, sending splinters and sparks flying. Thick slime dripped from the tentacle that was snaking deeper into the cabin, pools of the liquid settling on the deck.
“Oh, hell no…” Joseph whispered as the smell of burning metal washed over him. The slime was eating through the hull, like viscous acid.
“Don’t let it touch you!” he yelled to Julian, who had already torn off his coat and thrown it across the deck. It shrivelled up and thick smoke rose toward the envelope. The Skysnail rocked back; it was level again. Joseph took this as an opportunity to run to the gun deck and grab a blunderbuss. Julian was soon behind him.
“If that thing touches the envelope, we’re done.” He panted. “It’s fire-proof, but not acid proof.”

As he said this, at least four more tentacles suddenly appeared, looming over the deck. One grabbed another support cable, and began oozing acid along it. Two more tentacles swept the deck, as though they were searching for something. An unfortunate crew member was knocked over by the rubbery, pink assailant, and began to scream as the slime burnt his skin. Joseph fired into the tentacle nearest to him, but there was no effect. A drip of slime fell onto his shoulder and he immediately felt the burning. Tentatively, Joseph and Julian looked up, and saw the final tentacle wrapping around the envelope, tightening its embrace on the Skysnail. One support cable finally broke, and the hull swung sharply. The companions were thrown violently into the guard rail.

Then, the Skysnail began its rapid and destructive descent.

* * *

Peregrine heard a rustle in the canopy of his boiled lolly forest. A giant purple fan seemed to have alighted in the treetops.
What a kite! Lord Lamont thought gleefully.

Mango Trypping: Chapter 3

15 Dec

In association with Thank You For Your Thyme

Chapter 3 – Captain Halloran’s Magnificent Ship

In which Captain Halloran’s mode of transportation is described

Joseph Halloran was the captain of a stereotype, but one he loved. The Skysnail was an epic creation. The hull of iron, coated with a shimmering layer of Helionavitas, was covered with snaking cables and pipes. Several of these cables ran into the hearts of two huge, steel wheels, one on either side of the vessel. These wheels would spin slowly, making about one rotation every 24 hours, giving the ship its name. While the movement of the energy turbines was snail’s pace, the ship itself could approach supersonic speeds on sunny days. Joseph loved the irony of a metal snail moving almost as fast as sound. The Snail had four sails that opened like fans. They decreased in height and breadth from the back of the ship to the front, and glimmered violet and blue thanks to the Helionavitas threaded into the canvas. At night, the whole vessel glowed. Any mission requiring a level of stealth had to be carried out with the sails lowered and the hull covered with black, oiled canvas. One drawback in exchange for limitless fuel and a constant supply of hot water.

Every morning, Captain Halloran would order the two largest sails to be fanned out, charging the heavy mechanisms that would drive the vessel on its voyage that day. When maximum capacity was reached, the two large sails would be closed and withdrawn into the hull, and the two smaller ones opened. They provided a constant refilling of the power cells without the drag caused by the wider sails. The streamlined hull cut through the air, surging across the swell of clouds, following the warm currents that helped maintain altitude.

Captain Halloran would stand at the nose of his magnificent craft, flying goggles on and coat pulled tight against the chill of the mountain-top air. Julian often complained about the cold in the cabin, so Joseph imagined him a heavy, fur-lined jacket and some thermal underwear. Julian was grateful, but wished that the underwear didn’t have to be so pink.

*eye twitch*

14 Dec

It’s so colourful. So addictive. So funky.

It is BIT.TRIP BEAT.

Everything comes from something.

We were before we became. From life comes rhythm, and from rhythm comes life.

We are beings of information.

Everything is a conduit for learning.

We communicate in bits and bytes.

And we will return to something once we become nothing.

After our BIT.TRIP is complete

This is what you will read if you visit the website and click ‘story’. My brother downloaded the demo of this awesome little game, and we both sat and played through it about 12 times, volume up to full blast, until our father caved and gave us his credit card so we could stock up on Wii Points and become the proud owners of the full game. It’s astounding that something as simple as Pong can be so immersing. The idea is as follows;

  1. Hold the Wiimote parallel to the screen
  2. Rock Wiimote forward and backward
  3. Ooh, note that the little ‘Pong’ paddle responds to such action!
  4. Reflect little coloured pixels back into whatever is firing them from offscreen
  5. That’s it, really

It’s amazing how the colour and the flashing lights and the beats all blend into a smoothie of awesome. I think it’s worth a look. If you’re after real video game reviews, you should probably check out this blog, although the author is interstate for the moment.

Anyhoo. I’ve found a few other cool things of late, as I have too much time, too much youtube, and very little else to do. Let me share them with you.

Kinetic sculpture is quite radical, and the fellow in the video below makes some awe-inspiring ones.

So, that makes me wish I could wield a lathe with precise skill.

The other cool things going on at the moment include the release of a couple of albums from a few of my favourite artists ever.
OK Go are finally releasing their third studio album, Of the Blue Colour of the Sky. Note that they actually spell ‘colour’ with  a u, which I think shows how forward thinking and literate Damien, Tim, Andy, and Dan truly are. Their first single is WTF? and has a video clip to rival the famous ‘treadmill song’ clip.
Vampire Weekend are readying themselves for the release of their second album, Contra. A couple of songs are out and available on the interwebs; Horchata and Cousins. The video for Cousins is inspired, but then, I just like looking at Ezra.

I think that’ll do for today. Chapter 3 of Mango Trypping is on its way! Stay hopeful!

Broken glass scattered,
Laptop batteries depleated,
Mondays are like that.

Let me just talcum my hair…

11 Dec

Yes, hello. I have been doing a bit of a survey, and have discovered that this page gets the most views on posts containing the words ” download Glee songs”.

Well, I’m not actually able to upload any of my Glee music files to this blog, so if you’ve come here in search of  funky Glee beats, you shall find none here. Sorry. But hey! Don’t you be navigating away just yet! Open another tab and continue your search for illegal downloads there, but at least cast your eye over this here page, or any of the wonderful blogs recommended on the side bar.

Something else I have found is this slightly disturbing little tidbit, illustrated below…

Sue Sylvester…cosplay…?

Kinky.

So, I was thinking I might give the people what they want and whip out my old maroon St Clare’s tracksuit (which I think I wore once in five years, before I realised it was lame to wear a maroon tracksuit). A little blonde dye and my typical disposition when I’m woken from a nice dream at 6am by angry parentals, and I’ll be ready to roll.

People of Internet Land, you are very odd, but I dig that.

Om nom nom

11 Dec

I think my excellent model will be pleased that this looks nothing like her.

Please note; eye makeup has been exaggerated drastically in the name of ART. Thanks to Sian for the poses.

The Precious…

10 Dec

Credits to Austin for the wide-eyed and mildly terrifying pose. Shame I couldn't capture the intensity...