September 25th, 2009
This isn’t a major content post, just kidnof me complaining.
-Editors new record dropped Monday, but Hastings doesn’t have it. F.
-After repeated attempts, Windows Vista refuses to install on my computer
-A cautionary tale: Intel’s Socket 775 Stock Cooler is a piece of shit. It is incapable of doing anything resembling a decent job at cooling the quad core processor that I had burning away in there. It was idling at 65 degrees, Celsius, which is bad news bears. I got a little adapter so that my super-fan from the old case could find a home in the new one, and now the processor only gets up to 65C under full load. Wee.
-I got my schedule put together for next semester:
Sorry to phone this one in. I was really banking on getting to rave about the new CD or Vista, but despite my best efforts, neither materialized.
August 31st, 2009
I just wanted to take a quick second here to lend a shout-out to a close friend of mine, Jenny Jalack, and her blog! It sortof embarrasses me to see her flowing, insightful prose crop up every few days on her blog, The Global Flapjack, when all I can do here is give you periodic tidbits of new music and political rantings.
The pictures really help, and its a blog worth reading for the style alone. That aside, the content for the next few months will be especially fascinating as Jenny acclimates to living in Moscow, Russia, of all places!
Check it out.
I highly recommend.
August 14th, 2009
[Saying that takes me back to my Brak Blog days!]
We’ve come a long way since the inaugural of Schrödinger’s. This year’s birthday is especially salient given the recent and drastic changes the blog has witnessed. We are now what I’ve long understood to be a “real blog.” The content has a focus, and audience, which is more than I could ever say on its behalf before. Almost on a whim, I decided to throw off the final trappings what this blog used to be and morph it into a more ideal aggregation of news, music, and general commentary on life.
I did a little history-searching, and found the original blog: Braker. Oh man, just reading this, oh my god! I talk about pointing a gun at my driver’s ed instructor of all people?! The dude just wanted to teach me to drive! Where did I get off, I don’t know. Those early stages were rough though. I had no idea what I was doing, and blogging was a really new medium. Next up is The Brak Blog. Here I tried to tighten the screws a bit, and got accustomed to a paid hosting system as opposed to the free services. The funny thing is, in talking about “what worked” in my retrospective on Brak Blog, we have abandoned almost everything that was successful about that format. Schrödinger’s has been an extension of that, but slowly it has progressed and transformed in increments to achieve its current form.
Finally forsaking the song titles, I think, is what did it. Instead of placing undue emphasis on needing to write an entry that fit the song I wanted to share with people, I just started writing a music blog. Which I should have done a long, long time ago. By parsing that with the intermediate rant on politics and my nerd forays about anime or Firefox, I think the blog has finally reached a good equilibrium. I know this because posting rate has skyrocketed. Not just quantity, but quality too has gone up with more to talk about than meandering anecdotes. These changes have increased our visibility, and in turn we have people checking back more often, reading more posts, and even commenting sometimes!
This is all very exciting, and I’m going to continue pursuing this idea of a “real blog” with conviction. I stood by idly in high school as the blog format evolved around me, content to just do with it what I wanted, and continued to ignore that trend well through this current effort. But I’m tired of the damn thing just being a vehicle for stories that aren’t that funny to begin with, and really just became amalgamations of stuff I did. That’s not interesting in a general sense. Commentary on music, politics, and technology, however, has an audience.
The true test will be if I can keep this up during school. This summer is encouraging though. Even if post rate drops to half its present frequency, that’s still multiple posts a week, something that would have once seemed impossible. WordPress makes a lot of this possible, with stuff being so easy to add to posts, move around, and include multimedia aspects. Things have changed here at Schrödinger’s. I think for the better.
Thus, I just thought you should know you’re looking at Schrödinger’s Blog: 3.0. I’ll continue to get the site acclimated to the new changes, and I still have a few layout tweaks in store. In a few months, I’m going to submit to Hype, which I’ve said before is a big goal of mine, that also would serve as a good motivating factor to keep it up.
All this has got me thinking about what I’m going to do in another year. The Brak Blog was always a four-year-mission, but I left this current project a little ambiguous. Another change, or should we stick it out? We’d certainly be in the market for an overhaul, either way. But that’s a ways off, yet.
For now: Happy Birthday, dear blog.
It’s fitting that we should celebrate your growth in content as well as years on the same day.
August 6th, 2009
… Some of us are just better at hiding it, that’s all.”
Today, Ethan called me on the phone to let me know that John Hughes had died. I was taken aback, for a moment. It’s always a bit of a blow, hearing things like that, unprompted. Not that I’m going to lose it over a man I hardly knew, who died of more-or-less natural causes, somewhat towards the latter part of his life. But I did feel a little pang that caught me unawares.
John Hughes, for those not aware, is a celebrated American filmmaker whose run of teenage angst films in the 1980s came to define the time for kids living back then. Among his bigger movies were The Breakfast Club, Ferris Buller’s Day Off, and Sixteen Candles. Later in life, he penned, under a pseudonym, the first two Home Alone films.
It’s just funny, because even though those movies came out almost 25 years ago, I feel like they have just as much impact today. They’re no less relevant just because their soundtracks are composed of a fantastically retro spread of 80s pop artists, and in fact I’d say that only serves to ramp up the nostalgia factor. The themes dealt with are pretty universal for growing up in middle America though: peer pressure, isolation, popularity, love, parents, friends. And the films managed to do it in a pretty earnest fashion.
The Breakfast Club, I feel, was Hughes’ best work. It has the best blend of humor, emotion, dancing, and “fuck-you-mom-and-dad-and-teachers-and-world” of any of the movies. Buller was funnier, and Sixteen Candles more quirky, but TBC pulled it off better than any of them. I remember watching that movie countless times in high school, feeling more and more spoken to with each successive iteration. Not to mention that opening the film with a Bowie quote was essentially one of the coolest things I could possibly imagine for such a film.
I noticed a while ago that I haven’t watched, nor felt the need to watch, TBC in quite a while. This startled me, because I used to watch it at least once a month the first two years of high school, and a few times a year Junior and Senior years. It occurs to me that perhaps this has something to do with the fact that I don’t need it like I used to. Those awkward years when everyone’s looking for reassurance of their own self-worth, and where everyone has a different way of finding it, have gone by, I suppose.
That’s sad to think about, that I don’t need Anthony Michael Hall, Ally Sheedy, Emilio Estevez, Molly Ringwald, and Judd Nelson like I used to. The memories persist though; one time Lydia Schneider put an anonymous question in the “ask Mr. Hashman” hat which we passed around in scripture class. Hashman pulled it out and read it aloud to the class:
Does Barry Manillow know you raid his wardrobe?
I believe that, to this day, both men remain in ignorance of that undoubted truth. As for me?
“I’ll be alone, dancing, you know it baby.”
[ mp3 ♫ ]
July 28th, 2009
Just a quick head’s up: this is where my reading stands!
Catch-22 [Heller] (Carryover from Spring Semester)
Mountains Beyond Mountains [Kidder]
Pride and Prejudice [Austen]
The Man Who Invented the Twentieth Century [Lomas]
Slaughterhouse Five [Vonnegut]
No Country for Old Men [McCarthy]
Fahrenheit 451 [Bradbury]
Cat’s Cradle [Vonnegut]
The Martian Chronicles [Bradbury]
The Sunset Limited [McCarthy]
The Last Question [Asimov]
The Road [McCarthy]
Breakfast of Champions [Vonnegut]
I was so ambitious when I first cobbled together the list, but I don’t know if I’m going to make it though! I couldn’t find the Road when I wanted it, so I just started No Country, which proved to be surprisingly dense. My mom sent Martian Chronicles along when she brought me Fahrenheit 451; it’s a really cool collection of stories. It’s a bit hard to approach because there’s no clear, driving narrative, but it’s interesting to see a really “big” story (the colonization of the planet Mars) told in a little piecewise fashion, through vignettes. It’s kinda like the Twilight Zone (a lot, really), but it takes place not in a ‘universe of mind’, but also byond that plain old one of ‘sight and sound’. In truth, somewhere between the two is the best way to describe it.
I read The Sunset Limited in just under two days; it’s a short play with only two people in it. It was well written, and I enjoyed it, but the ending kinda throws you for a loop. I would also love to see it performed; you can almost feel the characters struggling to get off the pages and trying to be more real than a bound stack of pages will allow. I have this weird ambition to stage it, but I don’t know how I’d even manage that, but I think it could be fun.
When school starts it’s really going to burn me that I can’t read as much as I’d like to, but I guess that’s the way it is; at the very least, I’ll have the desire to fight it harder. Gotta get back to learning, though, I suppose.