On Fandom Hope/Hype

Today has been officially labeled as “Back to the Future Day” as it is the actual day in which Mary McFly actually traveled through time. Ignore all the shitty memes. It really is today. So, of course, social media has been inundated with people posting Back to the Future related posts. It’s kind of cool, a bit odd, and at times just weirdly confusing.

Honestly, though, I am just content that there is a method and manner of nerds, geeks, and dorks to communicate and congregate, even when distance is a factor. I like that so much of the media and totems of goofy and dorky media has become mainstream, but I wonder if we are reaching critical mass. Is the hype and bubble about to burst and explode a massive blow-back onto the nerds and geeks of the world?

I mean just look at all the media (both old and new) around the upcoming Star Wars movie. There are toys, books, videos, commerce tie-ins, etc. Hell, the latest trailer premiered during a Monday night football game. It was pretty awesome though.

So, is geekery and nerddom reaching a tipping point? Truthfully, I have no clue. I know that nothing, at least nothing I have seen thus far, can grow exponentially without loss and consequences. And most likely the mass saturation of comics, films, television, etc. will probably reach a level in which it can no longer sustain itself.

However, I can enjoy all the amazing and astonishing creations, both new and old, being given life and deal with the fallout, if and, when it happens. i can’t control the media being produced or it’s eventuality, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t enjoy the ride as it happens. Thus, I suppose that is what I, and maybe all of us, should do.

Besides, have you seen that trailer? I know the movie might end up being shit, but the hope and expectation for the possibility of the movie is more than enough for now.

Looking Back/ New Year’s 2015

The other night my friend and I did our usual New Year’s tradition of exchanging resolutions and checking our previous year’s accomplishments. I did pretty good managing to complete 6 of the 10 resolutions I set out for myself. I suppose this is always a time for reflection and possibility, so why shouldn’t I do the same?

I was looking back yesterday and trying to figure out what I had accomplished in the last 365 days. There are some things I managed to do. Many more I did not manage to get to. And even more ideas and plans that were not attempted for one reason or another. Still taking everything into account, I think I had a pretty good year overall.

Work: I got a job at the beginning of the year and managed to not fuck it up or get fired. This employment is guaranteed, assuming I don’t do anything stupid, at least till August. It’s not the job/career I want but it pays the bills and I am kind of good at it. As well, the hours allow for some side work and hobbies. I hope to change paths in the coming year into something I can see myself doing more long term.

Home: My living situation is not ideal for many reasons, but there is a roof over my head and food to eat so I cannot complain too much. I hope to finally move away from where I currently am and not come back for awhile, or at least not unless it is my specific choice too.

Reading: I read 27 books this year. I kept a running list on my phone and that is the number I ended up with. I wanted to read more than that, but it is not a bad record for a year. As well, this does not include the numerous articles (printed and digital), comics, graphic novels, and random short stories that I also read. I guess that is a pretty big haul in the end. Every thing I read was illuminating, entertaining, and educating to some extent. I also really enjoyed every piece.

Writing: I wrote a freaking book! I finally won NaNoWriMo and am planning to edit in January and February. Add the 124 blog posts of various lengths from this site, the 3,000+ tweets, the Facebook posts/rants, and the odd, random articles I wrote on other sites and I managed a decent amount of writing.

Media: I probably spent too much time watching television & movies, playing video games (though not as much as I would have liked), and spending time on social media. However, I did incorporate this somewhat into my writing and I find hours of entertainment and inspiration from the media I engaged with, so not a total loss. I also found so many interesting, creative people through my endless exploration of media that I hope continue to make awesome shit in the coming year.

Health: Lost a bit of weight and managed to keep some of it off. “Ran” two 5k’s which if you know me understand how that was an accomplishment. Actually got into exercise again and enjoyed the strength and flexibility my body adapted to.

Friends: Reconnected with a few old friends and kept in contact with those that I love and consider true amigos.

Self: Learned a lot about myself this year and came to a few more concrete conclusions. Some I will probably discuss in the coming year and some I’ll keep to myself until I am more sure of what I believe.

Looking back at these last twelve months, I have accomplished some things. I am still not where I want to be in life, but for the first time in a long time, I think I have a better idea of how to get there and what I should be doing. It won’t be easy and I know I will most likely have to go through some shit to get where I want to be. However, I look forward to the new year and beyond.

I have a few ideas and projects brewing and a game plan. So, bring it on Universe because I got shit I got to do!

As a final note, thank you to all the people who subscribed, read, like, commented on, spread, or engaged in any way with the writings on this blog. Thank all 150+ you (yes, even the bots) for taking the time out of your day to do so. You will probably never know how much it meant to me and I hope to make it worth your efforts even more in the next year.

See you all on the other side.

Losing My…

I used to stare into the night sky

in fear of the grand abyss of the dark

and of the bright burning balls of fire

that showed both Your beautiful majesty

and irrational terror.

 

You could send anyone of those

stars screeching straight into

this world and end everything.

It was only through

Your mercy and desire that

we somehow survived day to day.

At least that is what I was taught.

 

I was afraid of what I saw

staring into that night sky.

Until, I began to question:

Question what I had been told.

Question the stories passed down.

Question the ridiculous rules I had to live by.

Question everything.

 

Some questions led to more

some were eventually answered

and most never were but

With every question my curiosity flourished

and your magnanimity diminished.

 

My queries cost me many things:

My certainty of the future.

My relationships with family.

My identity I lived by for many years.

 

However, I no longer look at the sky

with apprehension or fear but instead

with an unquenchable desire to see

beyond what has been seen and with

hope that the knowledge from those

who came before me will lead those

who come after into the furthest reaches

of the sky, the mind, and human potential.

 

If it means losing you and everything

that I have known,

it is a worthy trade.

 

 

This is a bit darker than I originally intended and I swear I am not trying to be controversial. I am merely trying to understand my own thoughts through one of the few ways I know how. Love to read your own, even if it is just saying how much you disagree with or hate what I wrote, so please leave a comment.

 

 

 

 

I’d Rather Have A Beer

I have never understood the phrase “runner’s high”. I have heard it from friends and family, all running enthusiasts of differing levels, but I suspect that there is a certain level of bullshit associated along with it.  According to them, a sense of pure euphoria and zen like mental experience occurs at a certain time during the act of running that rivals the effects of drugs and alcohol, both legal and illegal. Frankly, I just believe these individuals  have no clue as to what they are talking about because, having had the pleasure of experiencing a small sample of certain substances, very few things are comparable to the effects of drugs and alcohol and running is not on that list. I can only imagine that these unfortunate individuals have been drinking the worst possible beers and limiting their drug intake to Tylenol, but that is neither here nor there.

I personally have never felt anything remotely resembling a runner’s high. Granted I am not the most avid runner, but even in my younger days when I was far more dutiful in the activity I never derived pleasure from the run. To me running is, and always has been, a necessary evil. It is really one of the best and easiest exercises that a person can participate in. Virtually anyone can do it regardless of race, gender, body mass, or income. It is also a great way to regulate metabolism and have an overall healthy exercise. Even so, I hate running. The only time that I have felt that mythical euphoria during cardiovascular exercise has been from punching the crap out of a heavy bag or sparring with someone, though to be honest I would usually be on the receiving end during those sessions. Hmm…might have a few anger issues I should look into.

Still, even with my seemingly infinite disdain for the activity, this year I have tried my best to begin to run. So far, I have managed to run every weekend (both days) since January 11th. It is not much at all, but it is a start, especially considering that I have not run a mile for several years. For some idiotic reason, I decided to sign up for a 5K. Now, that probably seems like an easy, insignificant task to many of you, but for me I might as well have been running a full marathon. Anyhow, I signed up and did it this morning. I won’t say I ran the 5K, but I did finish it, so that is some sort of small victory for me, though admittedly a weak one. I am not going to write what my time was because, suffice to say, it was not great. So did I finally experience that runner’s high? Hell no.

Seriously, not once did euphoria hit throughout the whole ordeal. I did feel accomplishment, however, as I crossed the finish line. Going from not running at all to doing a 5k in about a month is not an accomplishment completely devoid of notoriety. As well, like the rest of my goals for this year, I will get better. That much I learned today. Keep going and get better. If nothing else, that was worth the entry fee. Oh and here is some proof of today’s activity.

5k1

Just realized that all this proves is that I was at a 5k, but not that I actually participated in it. Well, fuck…

Chosen Family

Recently a friend used the cliche “blood is thicker than water” to note the importance he places on family. I have heard that particular phrase from various sources for quite some time. I understand its inherent meaning and purpose. Family is important. No matter what your family will always be there and you should support them. If it ever comes down to choosing between family and others; always go with family. While I see why people would believe this, I have to ask what if your family sucks?

No, seriously. What if your family are a bunch of douche, ignorant racist assholes? Do you just keep defending them and explain it away in some odd narrative? I have always been more of the opinion of the importance of a “chosen family”. You have no power or choice in the family you are born into. Whoever they are, you are essentially stuck with them for life. Now, do not misunderstand. I am not advocating hating or abandoning one’s family since that would be rather reprehensible in of itself. However, the friends you have are completely up to you. Your group of friends, or as I like to call them your “chosen family”, choose to associate with you, and you with them, completely of their own volition because of common interests, personalities, and experiences.

Again, family is important and something that will never, ever leave you. Still, friends, those you choose to be with, should be given just as much significance in our lives. Don’t you think?

 

The Sentry Gathers…

A Life Worth Remembering

Image

Rather poetic considering that Mr. Franklin managed to both with his time on Earth. I don’t know if I fully agree with his sentiment as few will probably ever manage to achieve such a high status. However, I do not believe those lives are not worth remembering. I know what Ben was trying to say, but even a life not necessarily written down in the great annals and books of history will still have some impact that will be known and remembered after their life is done even if just by a close few. Still, I wonder how much this fear of “mortality” drives individuals particularly those in the creative and inventive fields?  Why are we afraid of being forgotten by the world?

Without being too self-centered, I have always dreamed of seeing my name on a book and having it read at least a few individuals. I don’t think that is because of any desire to be immortal, but maybe I am not fully aware of my own motivations. Either way, Mr, Franklin’s words still carry some truth. After all, only greatness, both good and bad, seem to inspire songs and stories, so perhaps the pursuit of it is not so bad as long as it is somewhat tempered (in my opinion). Something to consider as we live our lives and go after our dreams…

The Sentry Gathers…

Dinner Conversations

For the past few years, a childhood friend and I have had an nearly annual meet up for coffee, drinks, a meal, and long, winding conversation. No topic is off limits, but somehow girls, relationships, old memories, and our current and future goals always crop up. Last night was no different.

After a few laughs and mentions of girls we are interested in at the moment, the conversation turned to what we are doing with our lives and where we want to go and be in 5, 10, 20 years from now. My friend is in a unique position. He has a pretty good job where he makes pretty decent money and there is definite room for advancement. However, he wants to pursue another opportunity which will allow him to be in an environment and field he is truly passionate about. Of course, this is dependent upon him getting in and willing to live meagerly for a few years without the certainty provided by his current position. He is not afraid of hard work or having to cut back his lifestyle. What does concern him is complacency and uncertainty of what is ahead. He put it best in his own words. “I feel like I am in a car just driving down the road with no clear idea of where I am going or where to even begin to get somewhere.”

I can relate to his experience. Not the having a good job part or even the interested in academic pursuit part. No, I understand his fear of complacency and uncertainty. After recently ending my own academic endeavors (for the moment at least), I am now in that wonderful limbo of not knowing where to go or how to get somewhere. To mirror his quote: “I am not even in the car. I am at home on a Friday night messing with my phone hoping that something pops up for me to do.”

While I know that this will pass with time and effort, I just want to, at least, get on the road and start going somewhere. My friend and I are both still relatively young and know that life holds many obstacle and opportunities before us, but we just would like to know that we are in the right direction toward something of value and substance. Or at the very least to know where to start. I suppose that anxiety and uncertainty are part of life’s experiences, yet it is not easy to be in the middle of it.

To what the road holds. May we all at least be traveling forward.

The Sentry Gathers…