Mourning an Icon (Goodbye, Spock)

Mr-Spock-mr-spock-10874060-1036-730

I remember the exact moment I decided to watch Star Trek.  It actually wasn’t that long ago.  I asked Zach, “Do you think I’ll like Star Trek?  Should I watch it?”

“Sure,”  he replies.  “The Next Generation is really good.”

“No, I mean the original.  I have to start from the beginning!”

Because I’m really obsessive like that.  Sure, I would have been perfectly fine if I had started with TNG (it’s literally the most amazing thing ever).  But I needed to start from the original.

Oh was the pilot horrendous!  It was long and boring, but I knew it wasn’t the cast we all know and love, so I pushed through it.

Except Spock.  I loved Spock, even in that awful pilot.  It only got better and better and I was a Spock addict.  There was a humanity about him that no other character on the show had.  Even though he was the one “without emotion” he had the most depth, and the one who could empathize the best.  After all, he was someone who could mind meld with others, something so ridiculously intimate that the idea of emotional expression was put into question.

I have my criticisms of the films, but Spock stayed true to character.  It’s not surprising, because Nimoy himself took the character seriously, and developed a connection and understanding of Spock that went above and beyond what is required of an actor.

And then the new films!  The only reason I watched the new films was because of his cameos.  I figured, if it’s good enough for Spock, it’s good enough for me.

I know I’m talking a lot about Spock, but that’s the character I know him best as, and love the most.  Nimoy was passionate and kind.  When he talked art, he talked substance.  Spock wasn’t a curse to him, it was something he embraced and made his own.  The character of Spock will never belong to the franchise, it’ll always be his.  There aren’t a lot of fictional characters that are so deeply connected to a real person.

When I was trying to think about others that reminded me of such a character, I immediately thought of Bob Ross, Jim Henson, and Julia Child.  All of these people made a difference, and all of these people are ingrained in our brains and culture, for all the good reasons.  They are timeless.  I’m glad too, because sometimes I lose so much faith in what we have on this Earth, and then The Joy of Painting comes on, or I see a great Spock quote, and it gives me a lot of hope.  Happy trees, muppets, good food, and going boldly are my religion.

Even though Leonard Nimoy is no longer with us, he’ll live long and prosper in our lives and memories.

Until next time, LLAP.

Advertisements

New Years Plans and a Stick of Truth

So, for Christmas, I got the South Park: Stick of Truth game and I must say, I’m in love with it.  I haven’t played all the way through yet because I haven’t had too many opportunities to play, but I’m making good progress.  Despite the fact that the South Park world is poorly drawn, I’m totally blown away at the detail of this game.  Trey Parker and Matt Stone really don’t half-ass anything (except drawing people).  They put so much into whatever they do, and it comes across.  I don’t care how much they like to pretend they are lazy and don’t do work; LIES.  It doesn’t feel like other games.  It truly feels like I’m playing a character in the show.  It feels like I’m in the show.  And, as a fan of the show, I geek out at all the throwbacks, references, and shock moments (which overfloweth).  It’s my new favorite game, and the only thing that makes me sad about it, is that it’s just another game getting in the way of me finishing others.  So many nerd problems.

Today, I’m trying to throw my plans for New Years together, and yes, that includes all my resolutions, and an actual, physical outline of my plans for my goals.  I’ll post my resolutions here, for fun, and also to be held accountable/so I have something to reference in a year to make sure I completed everything.  I won’t post the outline, because that’ll ruin surprises and that’s no fun.  I will say, I’ll continue this blog, but I’m going to change up the look of it, and maybe mess around with the format a bit.  I hope to have more creative writing posts as well.  I’ll probably keep the frequency of posting the same, which, to remind you, can be anywhere from 0-5 posts a week (I zinged myself).

I’m also going to launch a new website at some point in 2015, but it won’t be related to this blog.  I’ll link to it when it’s up and running, and post about any relevant updates, but otherwise it’ll be in its own little world.  The short novel will still be published in February, and it’ll be free to download.  I’ll post about that too.

I’m also in the really early stages of another creative project, but I’m meeting with my creative partner this weekend to see exactly how viable it’ll be to launch it this year.  I have high hopes, but I also have a lot on my plate.  Since it’s a purely for-fun project, it’s hard to justify putting a ton of work into it when other projects need attention.  That being said, I’m rather excited about it, and really just want to do it so it can be shared.

So tomorrow, to end the year, I’ll post my last creative writing piece of the year.  Then on to new things!  Good luck to everyone, and enjoy this Zooey Deschanel thing I found on my Tumblr.  And doesn’t Joe have a delightful voice?

Until next time.

Hot Chocolate and a Publishing Date

This weekend, we watched The Polar Express with friends, while eating cookies and drinking this hot chocolate recipe.  It’s one of my favorite holiday movies – a little dark, and a little sad, but still uplifting.  And actually, it is the first Christmas movie we watched this year, because we’re currently making our way through the Lord of the Rings trilogy.  And in other nerd news, I’m almost finished with Star Trek: The Next Generation, so I feel like I’m making good progress in the nerdom.  I am not, however, doing well with the Star Trek original series movies, because, well, they are tedious, and I have to watch them alone.  Fans of the franchise say that all the odd-number movies suck (though the revival movies broke that curse) and the even-numbered ones are good.  I will not agree with that, because I did not like The Wrath of Khan, with the exception of a few moments.  I just really didn’t like that the movies don’t have the spirit of the TV series, but, such things happen this way.  It wasn’t as bad as the first one though – oh god was that the most boring movie ever.  I started to nod off in the first 15 minutes.  Perhaps I’ll do a review of The Search for Spock in the Friday Film Review this week.  It’ll be risky, since it’s an odd number…

Tomorrow is the big day.  I asked Zach if we could go and eat a meal at all my favorite restaurants for my birthday, and he initially replied, “That’s all you want for your birthday?”

I didn’t really have to think about it very long.  Yes, of course that’s what I wanted for my birthday.  I just never knew that food was an acceptable thing to ask of someone.  My sister thinks it’s weird, and insists I’ll regret it or not be happy with this decision.  To be honest though, I’m actually looking forward to my birthday now, even though it sounds a lot more like I’m an inmate on death row.

Because when I think of most places, I think of them in regards to food.  Perhaps that makes me a foodie, I’m not sure.  I just really like the experience of eating, especially eating at fun places.  When Zach went on a trip with his dad to Gettysburg, I texted at least a half a dozen restaurants I needed them to try.  And of course, I asked for thorough descriptions and pictures.  I think that makes food my porn, rather than me being a foodie, but oh well.

This is probably why I prefer road trips to camping.  My ideal vacation would be a combination of both though.  The dogs would also be there.  And copious amounts of fries.  That we would share with the dogs.  Like, we would do a lot of hiking and stuff, but then have breakfast at an awesome cafe.  Maybe I actually only like hiking, and not even camping.

The year is winding down.  I need to readjust my goals, and decide what I want to do for the next year.  I feel like the first half of 2014 was amazing and I did everything, and then the second half wasn’t as great.  I’ve finally started thinking about my next steps, though I must admit, it’s become a more tedious process than I originally expected.  I have a lot of ideas, but I’m not quite sure which to approach first, and how to approach them.  I’m ready for a change.  I’m antsy and feel stagnant.

I will announce a publishing date for my short novel though.  It’ll be February 2015.  There.  It’ll be available for all to read by then.

Until next time.

Playing with the Dead: The Walking Dead Season 2

Last year, I watched Zach as he played through the first season of The Walking Dead game for Xbox 360.  It was a disturbing game, but very story-centric and interesting.  This year, we decided I would play through season 2 while he watched.  When we went to Target to get the game, the guy helping us asked us how we liked the first one.  I replied:

“It’s messed up.”

He laughs uncomfortably, as I stare blankly into his face, totally serious.

“It can’t be THAT bad,” he muses.

“Nope, it’s that bad.  It’s messed up.”

Thus, the number one reason why I have a hard time interacting with strangers sometimes.

But really, it’s got some really fucked up choices.  SPOILERS: You decide who to kill sometimes, and you have to decide if you want to chop off your arm at the end after you get bit.  I mean, I get it, it’s the zombie apocalypse.  But I can still get totally appalled.

The new season picks up where the last leaves off.  You play from the POV of Clementine, a little girl.  It took me about 2 hours to get through the first episode (which is all I’ve played so far).  Already, I see I have a problem.  There’s way more action in this game than the previous.  The decisions were super hard off the bat, and I’m still scared of zombies, which in general, makes things difficult for me.  What really got me, of course, was the dog.  Yes, a dog showed up, and I lost my shit.  I tried not even interacting with it.  I didn’t want to know its name.  I tried ignoring it.  But the game wouldn’t let me, because the dog is important.  Don’t get attached to the dog, I try to console myself preemptively.  It’ll be fine.  It’s just going to get eaten by a zombie, and it’ll die and it’ll be traumatic, but shit, Meg, we’ve had to kill dogs in Skyrim before!  We moved on from that!

The dog does not get eaten.  It’s way more traumatic than that.  And Zach looked at me like I’m a monster for at least 10 mins afterwards.  And then to top it off, he told me his name.  It was Sam.

“It was on the dog bowl at the camp,” Zach says with pain in his voice.  We are still fighting about this.

I feel like when you play The Walking Dead with someone else, it makes it more intense, because you argue about decisions, and then slightly judge each other and build resentment when the decision doesn’t go as well as you hoped.  It’s a great relationship builder.

In all honesty, I’m a super sensitive person.  I love games though, and I love playing.  I love reading the graphic novels of The Walking Dead too.  But damn, I’m just really sensitive.

On the upside, it can’t get worse from there, although there is a pregnant lady, so that’s exciting.  I think I’m finally ready to advance the story again.

I was also thinking about people that live-stream when they play games, and I would totally do that, except that I’d really embarrass myself.  Really.

Tomorrow, I will post a Friday Film Review!  Sorry they’ve been lacking.

Until next time.

Goodbye, Social Life (I Started Skyrim)

I think I’ve mentioned that I’ve been really busy lately, and it’s entirely true.  I have a lot going on, and I can barely keep my head on straight.  However, eventually, the stress gets to me.  Not just being busy, but sometimes external factors play into giving me anxiety.  Right now, I have this constant feeling of anxiety, making me unable to eat and sleep properly.  This, in turn, makes things worse.  It got so bad last night, I couldn’t even focus and had to ask for help on my Python classwork from my husband who doesn’t even know what Python is.  Now you know where I’m at.

I do not have time to play video games.  I really don’t.  But I’m so stressed.

I make time (at night).

I started Skyrim.

For those that haven’t played, yes, it’s all true.  I’ve already spent 7ish hours on the game, and I’ve literally done very little to advance it.  But, I want to make a couple comments:

1. It’s the most beautiful game I’ve ever played.  I literally stopped to look at the moon and stars.  I’ve just gone out to take a walk.  What is this?  My mind blew up.  The music is even wonderful.

2.  The gameplay is weird for me.  This could just be because I’m still kind of a novice player, but I’m making myself nauseated just watching myself play.  I’m used to playing Fable, so this could also be a reason.

3.  I keep accidentally killing people.  And I accidentally killed the second horse I stole.  I feel terrible.  I was trying to escape some sort of snow monster and we jumped off a cliff on accident.  My poor, stolen horse saved me.  Those other people I killed were because they jumped up behind me and I stabbed them out of over-reacting self-defense.  Ugh.  I still see their dead bodies…

4.  Spiders.  No one told me about the spiders.  I have a serious phobia of spiders and I almost ran out of the room.  I think I fought them with my eyes closed somehow.

5.  The dragon.  I squealed, and clapped my hands, I was so happy when I saw it.

Unfortunately, this game is stressing me out a little too.  Mainly because I don’t know what I’m doing.  Perhaps I should just take some walks out in nature in the game?  I know the second I get into my groove in the game, I’m going to be in love.  And since I know this game is going to take me forever, I’ll be starting Bioshock Infinite to play alongside.

Yes, this is how I deal with extreme stress.  I think it’s a perfectly wonderful coping strategy.

For those of you who may be wondering: I’m a Khajiit and I named myself Stormaggedon (nerd alert!).

Cumberbatch’s Face

OK, so initially, I started writing this post about Doctor Who.  I deleted it all because honestly, even I was a little taken aback by the geek ranting.  I seriously need to just catch up with the seasons (I’m at 5 now) so I can just calm down a little.  Psht, who am I kidding?  I WILL NEVER CALM DOWN.

Now, where was I?

Oh yes.  I’m totally scattered.  I seriously have a million things to write about, but I cannot organize my thoughts today.

So here’s a picture of Benedict Cumberbatch’s face.

Revel in its glory.

You’re welcome.

Photo courtesy of Subspace Communique
Photo courtesy of Subspace Communique

Mission to Mars: Or How NASA Rejected My Astronaut Application

OK let me just start off by saying that I’ve never applied to NASA, or anywhere else to be an astronaut or anything close.  You actually have to be a rocket scientist to do those things, and I fall quite short of the requirements.

This morning, I told my husband I took a silly online quiz about what my “real” profession should be, and I got astronaut.  His response was, “How would you handle your fear of heights?”  I replied that I wasn’t sure (and perhaps it’s so high and without gravity it’ll be different?  I don’t know).  The quiz said because I was logical and also because I like to be alone I should be a space cowgirl.

Our discussion quickly turned over to Mars and how they are going to send four people on a one way rocket ticket to start colonization.  Some people plan on leaving their families if they are picked – like, their children and spouses!

Zach said he could never commit to never seeing Earth again no matter what, but I think I could.  If I wasn’t married, didn’t have dogs, and got to see all the places on Earth I wanted to, I could totally do it.

That’s because the whole outer space thing fascinates me.  To me, Mars is the TARDIS and I am my own Doctor, doing something no one else is able to do.  I will apologize for the serious nerd vomit I just committed.

Fortunately, I have things in my life that DO keep me grounded (to Earth).  I love all those things.  And honestly, I’d rather just write science fiction than live it.

But I’ll be watching those four in wide-eyed wonder.

“It’s Complicated:” What it’s Like for My Husband to be Married to a Fangirl

This morning my husband was berated with texts messages from me as he rode the bus to work.  Most of them were spewing names of people from Star Trek and B movies that I love and they all ended with a million exclamation points.  This is because Denver Comic Con is in a month and they are having a Next Generation reunion, emceed by William Shatner.

It’s not just Star Trek either.  There’s going to be a lot of awesome people that I totally admire that will be there.  This is basically torture for me because we will not be able to go this year.  As adults, we have responsibilities blah blah blah.  If I had the choice, I’d be going to several of these every year all over the world.  Dressed up.

Geek culture has been my world for my entire life.  I’m actually a little surprised I married a real person.

Eventually though, there came a time where I crossed over from the purely “fan” side to the “creator” side.  I love creating my own geek world.  This is what this year is all about.  Creation of art.  Hopefully, if I’m lucky enough, people will like my stuff, and be inspired by it like I am by others.

But right now, this post is about a boy and his fangirl.  People like lists, right?  I see Buzzfeed has every list ever.  So what’s one more?  This list is how I imagine life is for my husband living with me:

1.  Watching me play video games.  This initially started when I first started playing.  I didn’t really know how, so my husband taught me.  Then I made him stay with me during the scary games.  Now, I have no idea why.  Also, he doesn’t understand why I won’t start a new game before finishing a preceding one in the series, even if the stories are unrelated.

2. Lusting after everything.  I’m not even exaggerating.  My husband watches me fall in love with fictional characters all the time.  What’s worse, my taste in fictional men is unhealthy (I like dark, distant, cold, bad guys).  I’m a staunch feminist, but when it comes to my fictional love, I’m appalled at myself, and quite embarrassed.  The exception is the Doctor.  And Zach knows I’m always ready to run away in the TARDIS.

3.  Spending extra money on books and toys.  Remember when I said we were adults with responsibilities?  Well, this point right here is where we have problems.  I’d much rather spend extra money on my favorite hobbies and collectibles and at the book store than buying myself clothes, or even going out to dinner on a date.  This is why most of my clothes are second-hand.  This is why, until I got married, all the socks I owned I found somewhere or someone bought them for me, and I never bought socks.  After learning this, Zach was horrified and bought me several pairs.

4.  Nerd shrines.  This isn’t an issue right now because we’re still setting up our house.  But so god help me, this will be an issue soon.  My LOTR action figures can’t stay in storage forever.

5.  Deep depression after a character or series ends.  I’m not just sad, I need to stay in bed and mourn for days.  This also applies to having to wait for a new season – see: Sherlock.

6.  All our vacations revolve/involve some sort of fandom.  The other night we watched A Midnight in Paris and I told him I really only cared about going to Pere Lachaise in Paris because a lot of the artists buried there completely influenced my own art.  Morbid, yes, but arguably sweet.  I also really want to visit the park named after Jamie Farr in Toledo.  I will go great lengths to see very mundane things, people!

 

So there you have it.  This list is not exhaustive though, but I don’t have hours to spend making a list with 300+ points.  In all seriousness, Zach generally has fun with (some of) this stuff, and he has his own things he is “geeky” about.

I just take it to an uncomfortable new level.

Geek Alert!: Intro to Cosplay

I’m back on a writing schedule!  Yay!

So about, oh I don’t know, 6-7 months ago, I came out to my husband as a major nerd.  I admitted to him that I frequented forums and blogs involving cosplay, video games and oh god… the memes (LOTR ones are my favorite)!  I’m not entirely sure why I kept this information from him for so many years, and he was entirely surprised at the extent of my “geek” interests (don’t worry, our marriage survived).  But now that I’m out and proud, he’s joined in on some of the fun.  For instance, I finally get to go to comic con this year in Denver.  My very first!

Oh yes, about cosplay.  For years I’ve been researching costuming for characters I’m in love with.  Even though I definitely do not have the time to put together one of my elaborate pieces, I decided I still want to dress up for one of the 3 days we will be there.  So I’ve decided to go as… Sherlock!  He’s one of my all-time favorite characters.  I’ve loved him since I started reading Doyle as a child, and Cumberbatch’s version of the character just made me fall into a deeper obsession love.  Naturally, I want to create a more feminine version of the character, with my own flair, and a slight throwback to the books.  We shall see how this goes.  Either I’ll get this amazing character together, or I’ll run a needle through my finger trying.  Both are exciting, but one considerably less painful.

I’ve started the search for clothing items.  Of course, being who I am, I found the shoes first (yes, I’m planning an outfit around shoes!).

photo

I found these at the Humane Society thrift shop in Boulder.  They had a 50% off everything sale, so these were $3.  BTW, if anyone is in the Boulder, Colorado area, this shop has some pretty amazing finds.  I managed to get a beautiful lamp and purse, and my final bill was $11.

This week, aside from writing and studying my lines for a film, I’m going to draft up a picture of my character and hit the thrift stores and fabric stores this weekend.

So, if anyone in Colorado that is going to comic con happens to grace this blog, please, feel free to comment or message me!  I love meeting new people with similar interests.  And you can also lie to me and tell me I’m totally not over my head with this cosplay thing.