As I diligently cram for my Logic midterm (ha!), I remembered that the last season of An Idiot Abroad is coming out in just under 3 weeks! Perfect for after exam viewing!
Monthly Archives: November 2012
my brain and my will, that is. to cheer myself up, here is my TO LOOK FORWARD TO list after exams:
– THE HOBBIT
– SKYFALL (dad wants to see it)
– infinite trips to Frida & Diego (at the AGO, so sublime!)
– ALL THINGS ANTHONY BOURDAIN
– some sort of massive steak dinner, i deserve it!
– READING FOR PLEASURE (i love reading plato, but it’s nice to read stuff i won’t be tested on)
– ANNA KARENINA (I know Keira is a bit hit and miss, but i love her and Joe Wright. All his films are to my taste)
– seeing friends (i’ve been the worst about meeting up. i simply don’t have time!)
– working out!!!
– geeking out w/ shakespeare fans!!
cooking my own meals
I’ve re-appropreiated his NYC themed Q&A. Original found here.
What’s the best meal you’ve eaten in T?
Most recently: Yuki-no-hana. I’m a bit squeamish when it comes to raw food – but gah, best sashimi I’ve had so far!
In one sentence, what do you actually do all day?
Self-inflicted abuse of my senses: eyes (reading and videos), ears (music and audiobooks), touch (writing calluses), smell (perfume), taste (food!)
What’s your drink?
coffee for most days, beer cider on summer afternoons
How often do you prepare your own meals?
no time to cook during the school year–but nearly everyday during the holidays
What’s your favorite medication?
What’s hanging above your sofa?
don’t have a sofa – but i just bought two giant posters. one is Raphael’s “School of Athens” and the other, predictably, is Van Gogh’s “Starry Night”
How much is too much to spend on a haircut?
i only get one hair cut per year-so i usually dole out $60. But if i had time for frequent trimmed, then $25
when i’ve done the next couple days’ prep aka. 2am
Who is your mortal enemy?
my less proactive self
Times, Post, or Daily News?
I subscribe to the times.
Where do you go to be alone?
when i put on my earphones
Leonardo de Vinci: Anatomy
I got up to Unit5 Part A.7 of Symb. Logic last night and simply got too bored to continue studying. So I whiled away the night (I slept at 3am!) by watching countless episodes of anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations”. Man, it’s always a mistake to watch food shows when you’ve only had a large veggie salad for dinner – but I persevered! I didn’t eat anything else, seeing it was so late in the night and there’s nothing I fancied in the house.
Whew! I’m literally starving…
Just came back after eating a marshmallow sandwich because i didn’t have any toast spread left. It was surprisingly tasty. Hmm, looking at my agenda is going me headaches. The day after Tuesday’s midterm, I’m to meet up with my TA about the preliminary draft for my paper. Ugh, as you all know, I only have an outline. I suppose there’s another sleepless night! I’ll do a very detailed outline (with citations and everything) but there’s no way I’ll write 10 pages after that midterm.
During my procrastination this morning, I discovered touchpress apps! they are supposed to be fantastic! I bought the Da Vinci one – if it’s as good as it promises to be, I’ll probably get The Waste Land one too.
I need to get off the internet!! LATERZZZ
in the spirit
don’t say i didn’t warn you. once i get started on Moab, i simply can’t stop. here are 3% of the gems from Moab that resonate with me. some readers and reviewers complain that his writing style is too verbose. i can see why they think so – the word count alone is daunting to a casual reader. However, what is continuously astonishing to me (with each reread) is his remarkable ability to say precisely what i didn’t know about myself. I hate to say this, because it is untrue to some extent – but i relate to him. i say “untrue” because the context of his youth and mine are so astronomically different – and so our sets of worries and joys are also unidentical. but the feeling. Sigh.
i found these on the net (goodreads, etc – i rec that you buy the audiobook. nothing can beat fry’s own voice reading his own life. btw, his reading of the Fry Chronicles isn’t nearly as good. his voice thinned… because of the pipe smoking?)
“Life is sometimes novel-shaped, mocking the efforts of those authors who, in an effort to make their novels life-shaped, spurn the easy symmetry and cheap resonance of reality.”
“As I go clowning my sentimental way into eternity, wrestling with all my problems of estrangement and communion, sincerity and simulation, ambition and acquiescence, I shuttle between worrying whether I matter at all and whether anything else matters but me.”
“I used many times to touch my own chest and feel, under its asthmatic quiver, the engine of the heart and lungs and blood and feel amazed at what I sensed was the enormity of the power I possessed. Not magical power, but real power. The power simply to go on, the power to endure, that is power enough, but I felt I had also the power to create, to add, to delight, to amaze and to transform.”
“None of this is important in itself, but I feel somewhere that it has a lot to do with why I have always felt separate, why I have always felt unable to join in, to let go, to become part of the tribe, why I have always sniped or joked from the sidelines, why I have never, ever, lost my overwhelmingly self-conscious self-consciousness. It’s not all that bad. Heightened self-consciousness, apartness, an inability to join in, physical shame and self-loathing – they are not all bad. Those devils have also been my angels. Without them I would never have disappeared into language, literature, the mind, laughter and all the mad intensities that made and unmade me.”
“People who can change and change again are so much more reliable and happier than those who can’t”
“It is the useless things that make life worth living and that make life dangerous too: wine, love, art, beauty. Without them life is safe, but not worth bothering with.”
“And then I saw him and nothing was ever the same again.
The sky was never the same colour, the moon never the same shape: the air never smelt the same, food never tasted the same. Every word I knew changed its meaning, everything that once was stable and firm became as insubstantial as a puff of wind, and every puff of wind became a solid thing I could feel and touch.”
“Well I don’t know about you, but when I recall childhood pain, I don’t recall the pains of toothache, a thrashed backside, broken bones, stubbed toes, gashed knees or twisted ankles – I recall the pains of loneliness, boredom, abandonment, humiliation, rejection and fear. Those are the pains on which I might and, still sometimes do, dwell, and those pains, almost without exception, were inflicted on me by other children and by myself.”
“Choking with dry tears and raging, raging, raging at the absolute indifference of nature and the world to the death of love, the death of hope and the death of beauty, I remember sitting on the end of my bed, collecting these pills and capsules together and wondering why, why when I felt I had so much to offer, so much love, such outpourings of love and energy to spend on the world, I was incapable of being offered love, giving it or summoning the energy with which I knew I could transform myself and everything around me.”
“Music is everything and nothing. It is useless and no limit can be set on its use. Music takes me to places of illimitable sensual and insensate joy, accessing points of ecstasy that no angelic lover could ever locate, or plunging me into gibbering weeping hells of pain that no torturer could devise. Music makes me write this sort of maundering adolescent nonsense without embarrassment. Music is in fact the dog’s bollocks. Nothing else comes close.”
“Music was a kind of penetration. Perhaps absorption is a less freighted word. The penetration or absorption of everything into itself. I don’t know if you have ever taken LSD, but when you do so the doors of perception, as Aldous Huxley, Jim Morrison and their adherents ceaselessly remind us, swing wide open. That is actually the sort of phrase, unless you are William Blake, that only makes sense when there is some LSD actually swimming about inside you. In the cold light of the cup of coffee and banana sandwich that are beside me now it appears to be nonsense, but I expect you to know what it is taken to mean. LSD reveals the whatness of things, their quiddity, their essence. The wateriness of water is suddenly revealed to you, the carpetness of carpets, the woodness of wood, the yellowness of yellow, the fingernailness of fingernails, the allness of all, the nothingness of all, the allness of nothing. For me music gives access to everyone of these essences, but at a fraction of the social or financial cost of a drug and without the need to cry ‘Wow!’ all the time, which is LSD’s most distressing and least endearing side effects.
…Music in the precision of its form and the mathematical tyranny of its laws, escapes into an eternity of abstraction and an absurd sublime that is everywhere and nowhere at once. The grunt of rosin-rubbed catgut, the saliva-bubble blast of a brass tube, the sweaty-fingered squeak on a guitar fret, all that physicality, all that clumsy ‘music making’, all that grain of human performance…transcends itself at the moment of its happening, that moment when music actually becomes, as it makes the journey from the vibrating instrument, the vibrating hi-fi speaker, as it sends those vibrations across to the human tympanum and through to the inner ear and into the brain, where the mind is set to vibrate to frequencies of its own making.
The nothingness of music can be moulded by the mood of the listener into the most precise shapes or allowed to float as free as thought; music can follow the academic and theoretical pattern of its own modality or adhere to some narrative or dialectical programme imposed by a friend, a scholar or the composer himself. Music is everything and nothing. It is useless and no limit can be set to its use. Music takes me to places of illimitable sensual and insensate joy, accessing points of ecstasy that no angelic lover could ever locate, or plunging me into gibbering weeping hells of pain that no torturer could ever devise. Music makes me write this sort of maundering adolescent nonsense without embarrassment. Music is in fact the dog’s bollocks. Nothing else comes close.”
I’m feeling slightly queasy. My dad tried his hand at making fish, as in fish and chips. Without meaning to pun, it was very fishy – i had to drown it in chili spring roll sauce to mask that.
Anyway, i promised a monster post a couple weeks back so here it goes. Be warned – incoherency ahead! I jotted down bits and pieces of my thoughts over the weak and I didn’t realy make an effort to make them cohesive. This is literally a brain dump.
I was mending my yoga pants and listening to James Vincent McMorrow‘s devastating Follow You Down to the Red Oak Tree when my dad popped his head into my room and ASKED FOR THE SONG’S NAME! He literally disagrees with most of my music tastes (except for oldies and classical music) so this was kind of strange/awesome. He said the singer’s voice is very special – which is basically the reason why i love James VM so much! So much softness and strength! And oh yeah, I may have raved about that movie too – the one that cemented my undying devotion to Benedict Cumberbatch…?
I love entirely too much. this sounds like an odd thing to pronounce, but i don’t think i have enough love IN me, not enough for myself. Anyway, a portion of my time went into reading this. Tony Bourdain is such a character, that’s why I enjoy his shows (and the first couple of books were great!) so much. He’s lively and unpretentious (well, at least not to himself). I love real travel-food documentaries. I want to see the culture of the real folks, not just the touristy “hidden gems”. This also goes some ways to explain why I love “An Idiot Abroad“. Karl Pilkington is unlike anyone you will ever meet/ see/ hear of. He is just brilliant. Completely unassumingly, ignorantly brilliant – which is the best kind for reality shows!
oh! I found this fantastic site that links a ton of films, books, podcasts, to classic material! I have so many documentaries awaiting my attention it’s both delightful and depressing at the same time. Depressing because it’ll be a good month before i can even venture into the world of self-indulgence.
[brb – tummy feeling queasy!!! … is this TMI?]
Hmm… what else? I must one of the only people that didn’t talk about the US elections! Too much ink has been spilt on the issue already so i don’t want to dwell on it. I’m happy that he won – I disagree with Romney on several key points, but I don’t think he’s a bad person nor do I think he wants USA to go down the drain as a country. My mother is the opposite of me in politics, so our most recent skype meet was intense and a bit exhausting. But hey, she’s supposedly talking to Democrats online in order to “see the light”. She sees Obama in the same way I see Romney: ultimately nice guy – but not up to the task of being president.
on an utterly frivolous issue – i’ve been doing lots of online window shopping lately (due to my materialistic but stingy ways). I’ve come to realize something during these pseudo-shopping sprees: I view money in a completely different way than i did when i was jobless. Back when i didn’t have a job, i would easily buy things if i had the money. but now that i do have a job, i can never justify frivolous purchases to myself. i guess everyone experiences this maturity? But a lot of my friends think my frugal ways are hilarious. For instance, i have very sensitive to heat, so if i buy a coffee and the shop doesn’t offer cardboard sleeves, i always ask for an extra cup. when i finish my coffee, rather than throwing away the whole thing, i carry my unused extra home and save it for a day when i don’t feel like bringing my tumblr. is that too extreme? it’s no trouble at all to bring a paper cup home!
another thing i’ve come to realize during my vocal/visual arts haitus: the aforementioned arts are def not my forte. most of the time, i imitate. when i sing, i am always trying to mirror the original over some great cover. i haven’t painted anything original in months – always drawing waterlilies or starry night. i need to get back into doing more creative prints!! i miss it so! my creative writing, though not by any means especially outstanding – is completely my own, even if i can’t define what my style is.
This leads me to another point. I am so grateful that i have so many forms of creative outlet. I never feel ennui. In his second autobiography, stephen fry said that he and hugh laurie once exclaimed “how lucky we are!” They spent their days in cafes and vinyl shops after 20min of voice-over work (which pays very well). they did what they loved best, writing and acting together!
and of course talking about Fry always somehow leads me to his reproduced letter in Moab Is My Washpot which contains the immortal words “I tell you now that everything I feel now, everything I am now is truer and better than anything I shall ever be. Ever.” Fry wrote this when he was 16 and deeply unhappy.
I am not deeply unhappy, but if i may say so myself, i am deeply troubled. And every time I read these words, I am destroyed. Stephen Fry, over all these years, has always been so real, so authentic, so loyal to his feelings – whatever they may be. He never shied away from his self as he sees himself.
I, on the other hand, never allow myself to be so unguarded. every moment of my life is planned – by me! I never allow myself to wander. this is exhausting, and yet the fear of anticipation is too great to bear…
[it’s 12noon right now–i just left this sitting in the drafts folder, that’s all]
here is the list of things I’d like to have completed by Tuesday Night. I’d allotted hours for each for practicality’s sake:
– Thesis & Outline for AFMAMH paper (4)
– Thesis & Outline for Henry IV Part 1 & Twelfth Night (3)
– Symb. Logic Unit 6 Review (8)
– Brainstorm thesis for Ling. Anthro paper (2)
– Symb. Logic Quiz 8 (3)
All of the above add up to 20 hours. I have 10 hours left of today. I have 10 hours free tomorrow. ARGHHH
OK. I shall be calm, and light some candles. It’s a lot of work (and that doesn’t include my readings for the second half of the week!) but I can do it!
UPDATE: Finished reading and highlighting Ch 3-5 for Ling. Anthro!
UPDATE: Have a fuzzy thesis for Shakespeare!! Need to reread second half of 12th Night though.
UPDATE: Attempted symb logic – gave up. shall try again later.
UPDATE: UGHHHHHHHH, I want KFC! I just watched a bunch of k-pop reality shows. Why do I do this?!?!
UPDATE (Nov 13): finished rereading 12th Night. The thesis is now pulling in too many directions.
UPDATE: Have fuzzy idea for AFMAMH.
here is what I have ingested today:
– 4 slices of raison toast w/ margarine
– 2 mugs of coffee
– 1/3 of a chicken wrap
– 1 tall glass of orange juice w/ ginger ale
it’s a miracle i haven’t croaked yet. i’m feeling kind of strange. Tired, but really inspired by a ton of stuff. but i suppose the mountain of work facing me is a bit daunting. i just need to take things step by step. not everything is due now! In fact, save for a term test next week, everything is due in 2 weeks’ time. But i must be prepared – otherwise I won’t be sleeping 6 hours a day like I should be!
UPDATE: it’s half past 11pm. So far I have eaten – half a pineapple (i’m not exaggerating), some fried fish, red peppers, a glass of orange juice.
plato and the presocrates
midterm in 9 hours. strangely enough, i’m not panicking. I haven’t exactly mastered the material (well, ok – i have a pretty good idea of what i’d talk about on any of the given philosophers…) but i guess i sleep so little (read: rarely get to bed before 2am) that 12:23am seems… pretty early to call it a night.
I HAVE OFFICIALLY GONE INSANE. at least i acknowledge it.
I really am a little to too hard on myself. and then sometimes when i have an OFF day (see last post) i berate myself for not working harder. it’s a tricky slop. this can’t be healthy, but this is how i’ve learned to cope. i am always preparing for that raining day.
my co-worked/ turned friend is leaving the country (and getting married). the office is having a goodbye party on wed and there’s no way i can make it. he said he’s having a friends only shindig on saturday (which is typically my non-work day) so hopefully i can go to that one.
there’s another commitment i want to get out of simply because i am on the verge of a physical collapse. i need to eat a real meal. i need to listen to some fun music rather than my own recorded study notes on my commutes.
but ughhhhh, i need to start my Henry IV Part I/12th Night comparative essay too.
you know what—i need to buckle down, finish prepping for my midterm and go to bed!
when i am physically weak (like I am now), everything and everyone is annoying. people shuffling and coughing and making a ton of unnecessary noise. ARGHHHHHHHH. My cramps began this morning and I had to stuff myself in bed so I would be fit for work tomorrow. This means that I lost half of my precious studying hours.
I am surviving on pots of tea and s’mores… I WANT STEW!!
OK, I have to gather myself and study now!