Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Another Com Bites The Dust

It seems, after eight years, that our poor little home computer has finally carked it. Sad, I know... I can sense the tears. Eight long years, of constraint frustrations and part replacements, resulting in what can only be described as an aging 'Frankenstein' of a PC. Everything had grown totally mismatched over the years, with the tower in particularly bad shape. Constant whirring and humming, the side slightly coming off at times from the shaking. All I can say is I'm glad I now have my laptop, heh. My brother randomly turned the computer on a few days ago and was met with a myriad of corruption errors and a ridiculously screwed up scene. After restarting a few times it managed to remain stable for a bit. So, of course I rushed in oh-so-heroically with my external hard drive and backed up as many files as I could, or at least those that were necessary. The thing was pretty much dead not long after.

Poor ol' Franken-puter... R.I.P.

But out with the old and in with the new, as they say. Within days we now have a brand spankin' new home PC. Considering I do most of my stuff, gaming included, on the laptop nowadays though, we didn't have to splurge massively on graphics and whatnot since mainly my brother and mother would be using it. Still cost a bit though, especially considering half the house has been falling apart lately. First the fridge, then the dishwasher, then some of the fuses in the back room's wall, and now the PC dying. To quote the Simpsons: "The crapshack is goin' to hell".

Case is quite funky, even if the metallic casing is a bit incongruous with the rest of the setup. Then again, it's far closer than the eight year old beige monstrosity ever was, heh. Because I know you're all just *dying* to see (he says with immense sarcasm), here it is:

Isn't she just positively glowing?

Isn't she beautiful? Her radiant fans... her sleek coat... oh, she looks positively magnificent. The guy at the store was nice enough too - better customer service too. Worked through every option and whatnot rather than just forcing the flashy and expensive on us. Presented pros and cons etc, answered questions perfectly. Also, apparently after the initial meeting when my mother and I went down to order the computer, he seemed to think I was ridiculously nice and well-behaved or something. When my mum went back down today to pick up the PC he was raving about how "well I'd been brought up" and how "nice and polite" I'd been, as opposed to most of the kids he sees come in with their parents, being ridiculously rude and even swearing at them right in front of him. As a result, he ended up giving my mum a free copy of Nero as a reward of sorts.

Guess it's true, good manners go a long way. Never know what will happen.


Money, money, money

It's not the most important thing in the world.

I was talking with a friend (I don't know if you're reading, but you know who you are) regarding future job security, and she was of the opinion that it was better to go with her head - i.e. secure herself financially, since she has two younger siblings as well and her parents can't keep supporting her - as opposed to going with something she's necessarily interested in. Now, she's entitled to her opinion, and I don't mean anything against her, but it really just provoked almost the polar opposite out of me.

I don't see how anyone could make a choice like that, especially if you detest the field/line of work you'd be moving into, just for the higher paying wage. I could never picture myself doing such a thing, my life would just seem so... unfulfilled. I mean, another friend brought up the point that, in order to pursue your interests, you'll need money to fund that. But, at the same time, you can still find lines of work that still link in some way to your field of interest, rather than completely uprooting your plans for the future and moving into a different area of work just to get financial stability.

If I *really* had to choose between the two, I'd rather be borderline homeless if I could still indulge in my interests. Sure it wouldn't be easy, but say... art for example, which I'm mainly looking into career-wise to get into graphic design or advertising, but... there would still ways of pursuing it, even if it was as simple as drawing with chalk on the pavement. I know the same can't be said for all careers, like it's not exactly easy for a homeless person to practice medicine, but there would be other avenues to either get into your preferred field of interest, or find some less financially-inclined way to achieve your interests and goals.

I just can't agree with the line of thinking that financial security is more important than what you love. Maybe I'm just a tad too idealistic or not thinking with my head enough, but it's only material possessions in the end. Unless you're using it to fund your interests and pursuits, I really don't see the point in indulging in a detestable career - I'll never understand how people do it.

Still, everyone is entitled to their opinion. This is just an expression of mine, and I meant no offense to those who disagree. Do what you will with your lives, as well... they're your lives. Live them how you please.


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tick Tock

Time. Not enough of it. Only just now realising how much of it I wasted away in the last two weeks of holidays and sorely regret it. At least I can say it wasn't a *total* waste considering I enjoyed myself for the most part, but the question is... was it worth it in the long run? Immediate enjoyment, or should I have put in more of the hard yards to reach that ephemeral destination of UTS?

Gah, I wish it would just stop for another few weeks... Disappears too fast.

Masses of history catch-up to do which is eating up all my time, as well as keeping up with the homework. A possible third successive screw up of Advanced English is imminent on Thursday, and both my major works are in dire need of attention. Despite all the stress from this, current goal of the day/week/month is to manage my time more efficiently. Make the most of it, both in terms of a better work ethic and better relaxation. Often I find myself in the purgatory of guilty procrastination, not working to the fullest, nor relaxing to the fullest as I feel uneasy about giving myself the pleasure of enjoyment with the workload looming.

I shall once and for all be rid of the vile beast of procrastination.

I know you're probably all scoffing at this point, but I shall endeavour to both work and relax at optimum levels. Should alleviate some of the stress. Besides, I have a few things to look forward to. For example, a possible Tim Burton marathon as vaguely and sketchily planned out today during Extension 2 English, heh, albeit possibly off in the distant future. But it's something. As long as I get my notes fixed up for trials and my majors for the most part completed, it'll be worth the continual stress implosions when I hopefully waltz up to UTS for my first day of university.

Oh well, last term of school ever... I shall defeat you... *triumphant music plays in the background*


Monday, July 27, 2009

Felt-Tip Genocide

Thought I'd keep this one short and sweet, considering the length of the last post, whilst I do some end-of-holidays cleaning. Amidst the mess I collected up all the felt-tip pens I'd been using throughout the holidays on my body of work. Those things run out so quickly. I ended up counting an amazing thirty-three, give or take a few that I may have lost. It's ridiculous.

There was a purpose to this though. Despite having run out of ink, there is still a use to them. My whole body of work concept, which I won't go into *too* much depth here, basically revolves around minuscule problems such as frustration with stationary being blown out of proportion, then taking that on a literal level and showing the objects as monstrously large. Mr. Kirkby (my Art teacher) recently suggested, however, that considering the theme of my artwork I could use these seemingly useless dead pens to add to the artwork, commenting on my own frustration with them constantly running out during the body of work process. Thus, by the time I'm finished and have a mountain of pens to work with, I can experiment with some macro photography and portray them as monolithic in size as well, alongside the exaggerated felt-tip drawings.

Night falls on the battlefield as these ink-less brethren rest in peace.

Moral of the story: These wasted pens, for all I know, could prove to be integral to the final piece of art I turn in as my body of work, in addition to the ink they provided. Even things which seem tiny, insignificant, or useless can still have a purpose or be inspiring / intriguing, once you look at them for another perspective.

Guess I should resume cleaning though...


The End Is Nigh

Yes, the end of the holidays is upon us, my friends. It is a most melancholic affair. I would insert a sad face emoticon around here, but I'm trying to have this blog retain *some* level of sophistication in the writing, as opposed to my usual MSN emoticon spamming. So, I'm afraid, you must imagine the anguish on the little round yellow circle for yourselves, dear readers (if you even exist by this blog post). As of writing this post it is past midnight, and thus it is the final day of this precious "break" (if you can even call it that, as with the impending trials any amount of procrastination leads to immediate guilt).

But yes, holidays are ending. Children across the nation are weeping as the trials draw near. And yet, despite this pressure, procrastination always seems unavoidable. Despite doing a decent amount of my body of work for Art, I've only touched on English a bit and my Histories even less... it's quite disconcerting. Still, with the stress explosion that is soon to occur, I must cherish this last day and relax. See those italics? Doesn't the word just look so cushy and lazy? It's perfect.

Though this is also an end, it is many beginnings. Firstly, the beginning of the final term of high school - ever (though yes, I am quite aware as this is also alluding to another end, so quiet). I can't wait for university... it's so close, yet so far. I just love the city atmosphere, so getting into UTS would be absolute bliss. Then again, there's the fact I still live in Penrith, so about 3 hours commuting there total per day would be terrible. I *would* like to move to the city, but then I'd have to worry about finding accommodation, roommate(s) depending on the rent or size of the place, and a job to pay for it all anyway. Bah, those were dark days working at Red Rooster, so hopefully I can get into somewhere above fast food.

At least I was a productive little worker, right?

This notion of fast food brings me to my next beginning of sorts though - the intense exercise and diet regime that shall commence first day back next term. I've lost weight consistently over the last few years due to a few inspirations, which I may save for a later post I suppose, and although I'm *close* to my ideal, I could do a slight bit more. It has been quite a battle, and my knee operation last year sort of put a stop to my motivation. This fervor shall consequently resume this Tuesday, and hence I have all of Monday to binge, should I see fit, heh. I may walk up to the local KFC and have a End-Of-Holidays Celebration before this cruel health program begins. See, working at Red Rooster used to work as a deterrent as I saw the disgusting kitchen conditions and how terrible and fattening the food really was. Yet, after quitting, for some reason I suddenly felt I could indulge without a care again. So, starting Tuesday:

-No more fast food.
-No more binging on chocolate.
-Alas, no more Tuesday Nachos from the school canteen, though this one will be a struggle to give up.

The goal of this all... well... I don't have a specific weight I'd like to reach. It's more that I just want to feel comfortable, and thus my target is fitting into an item of clothing. More specifically, the Cloud Control T-Shirt I bought from the Save FBI Concert earlier in the holidays. SUCH GOOD TIMES. I'm overcome by nostalgia thinking about it.

Ah, good times. Even got to hi-five my clone, shown behind me.

But yes, as I went to buy an EP Album of the first band that played, they also had the Cloud Control merchandise out. The shirt in question reminded me of one over on which depicted a deer using its antlers as a hat rack. Though no hats in sight on this shirt, it was still just as cool with the deer silhouette. However, when I went to buy it, the girl could only seem to find shirts that went up to medium size, rather than large. Thus, although it fits, the shirt is a *tad* tight. So, my goal is that, by the end of the HSC, I *will* fit comfortably into this shirt. Here is the damn awesome shirt in question:

Who wouldn't want to wear that? So simple, yet so coolio.

This is my goal. This shirt. This excellently designed piece of apparel, oozing nostalgia from every thread, heralds the new era of exercise and food Nazism. Both a good and bad start to what is the end of my schooling days - at least until university.

I realise this was probably one of the more trivial posts I've made so far. Then again, there isn't much competition as I've only made three at this point in time, heh. Still, this blog just helps me collect my thoughts and set them in stone. Thus, by declaring this health regime I can no longer escape from it, nor can my diet buddy. We can do it. This is where I would insert a smiley face, but as explained in the first paragraph you must imagine the jubilation yourself. It seems we have come full circle, so I shall end here.


Sunday, July 26, 2009

Orange Juice-Related Etymology

Well, I suppose I should explain the origin of the name of my blog, considering it may seem a bit... obscure at first. Anyone who reads this will most likely see it as a tad stupid, but I don't quite care heh.

Anyway, those who know me - friends and family - would know that I have a particular penchant for the popular breakfast beverage. Given the option, I almost always make a beeline or the orange juice over most any other drink, which has resulted in some questionable comments from the dentist. Apparently the acidity of all the orange juice I've consumed over the years may potentially damage my gums, and they recommended I reduce my intake of it. I can *try* to do so, and have tried, but I relapse quite often regardless. I still drink milk regularly enough to counteract it... maybe.

So, considering this is the one consistent interest in my life since a very young age, I figured that I might as well pay homage to it in the naming of this blog. A lot of my other interests and activities change and evolve but I can always enjoy a nice glass of OJ. However, there is one thing that irks me about this otherwise oh-so-wonderful beverage.


I cannot STAND the stuff. Always getting stuck in your teeth, or floating about in your mouth as you swish the drink around to the point where it makes you think something may have fallen into your glass. It's just terribly annoying, and I despise the texture and whatnot. Thus, I prefer the pulp-free variety. Additionally, most of the orange juice I consume - though not intentionally - ends up being concentrated. I've rarely squeezed my own orange juice.

Ah, delicious pulp-free orange juice. Courtesy of Wikipedia.

However, I'd like to think there's an extra meaning to it. The 'Concentrated' bit in the title I'd like to think is a tad ironic, considering I indulge in procrastination on a daily basis, heh. As for the 'Pulp-Free' element, well... I consider pulp unnecessary to the excellent beverage that is orange juice. Hence, I'd like to try and keep this blog free of any of the small, insignificant, or unnecessary elements of my life. Sure, if I go somewhere or do something of note I may document it, but I'd like to refrain from the pointless and annoying such as, say: "Today, I woke up and had a shower, followed by a toilet visit..." etc, because I quite simply don't see why I should bother writing that as most wouldn't even bother to *read* it.

Well, there you have it. The odd origins of my blog's title. I should probably head off and do something a tad more productive now though. Off to make Art!


And So It Begins...

Well, I'd never really been inclined to blog in the past - mostly because I'd come to the conclusion that 90% of it would just end up me ranting at the vast empty expanses of the Internet. However, my opinion changed after watching an interesting talk over on - it's a brilliant site. I've pretty much exhausted half of the archive of talks on there, with the content ranging anywhere from short, amusing pieces or lyrical musings to motivational, inspirational, and innovational speeches. Fuels the mind, really.

Anyway, one particular talk piqued my interest recently and coerced me into joining the marvellous yet somewhat overcrowded world of blogging. Specifically, a talk by one Mena Trott about how even complete strangers can take an interest in the random events in one's life and feel connected, despite little to no contact at all. Also, the notion that, after a great deal of time on this planet, many leave little to nothing behind, with her own grandmother (or at least I think it was her grandmother? I'd have to watch the talk again to check) leaving behind nothing more than a mere single photo. She goes on to say how blogs have changed all that.

For those interested (if anyone even reads this thing, heh), here is the talk in question - Mena Trott detailing blogs of the modern era:

In the world we live in, the vastness of cyberspace houses thousands upon thousands of remnants and snippets of individuals' lives which can be accessed by everyone and anyone who cares or takes it upon their self to look. I'd like to think that, even if I accomplish nothing of particular merit by the end of my life, that I've at least enjoyed myself and left something behind in some form - whether that 'something' is physical possessions, photos, or writings that are both on paper and virtual. Between my current and future possessions, multitudes of stored photos from the last few years in particular (when I suddenly got a bit snap-happy, though I'm desperately in need of a better camera at the moment), and the likes of say... Facebook, or now this blog, and whatever other endeavours of mine the future may hold, I'd hope that some sort of image of my life is left behind, even if only a brief glimpse.

So, that's what inspired me to finally get off my ass and write one of these things. As for how long it lasts - we'll see. Still, it could be a fun experiment. The whole idea of blogs always seemed somewhat cathartic to me anyway, so expect a rant or two amidst the sporadic and spontaneous ramblings that spring forth from my mind.

Now, my fingertips are *immensely* cold and it's just hit 2:00 AM... So I should probably be heading off to bed. At least I still get two more days to sleep in before school resumes.