24 May 2012 @ 03:09 pm
No, Andres, this wasn't simply because you posted a message on Facebook about having gotten drawing fever. This has actually been on my mind for several days now. The bottom line is: I really want to learn to fucking draw. I used to draw all the time as a kid. In school I would actually finish all the work so quickly that my teacher would allow me to spend the last hour of any particular school day just drawing stuff.

What exactly do I want to draw? Well, that's fairly simple (and therefore also quite difficult): Silverwind City. Nah, not the entire city (in time, perhaps). I mean the characters who make their living in Silverwind City. Our daring protagonists, Leo and Ray McGinnis. Their nemesis from the first story arc, Steele O'Donnell. I want to draw their plane, their homes, their faces. I want to start creating my own worlds. I want to be able to develop my mind's eye, and then draw what it sees.

So, I'm going to get started this weekend. Actually I'm gonna get started right the hell now. I'm doing some research (translation: browsing the internet) for some good tutorials and books to use. Visiting various forums to ask for advice. I already have ample drawing supplies, including paper and many different pencils. Now I just need a place to get started. For guitar it was JustinGuitar.com. For lucid dreaming it was LD4all.com. Once I find something to get me started on drawing, I can make at least somewhat of a structured attempt to get started in drawing as well.
 
 
27 December 2011 @ 01:33 am
Oh, dear... Have I been neglecting my dear old journal again? It certainly seems that way, doesn't it?

Well, for now I'll refrain from writing heaps upon heaps of text in the middle of the night. I need to be up early for work tomorrow. What's that, you say? Work? When the hell did Sven get a job? Don't worry, it's nothing spectacular. Just a way to make ends meet. Truth is, a lot happened in the last two or three months and it's been hard for me to keep up with it all. At the same time, I feel like there's a load to get off my chest.

By the end of every year I usually write a huge post about what went on that year. This year will be no different. The 31st is on a Saturday and I think that I'll be a little predisposed for most of that day. Luckily I'll have a fairly quiet week ahead of me, as far as work goes (only 14 hours total). That leaves me plenty of time to write that particular post. I don't remember what I did last year (whether I wrote it before the turn of the year or after, that is). In any case, lots to reflect on this time around. Both looking forward and looking back. Oh yes, it'll be a nice and long intro/retrospective. Here's a few possible topics that may come up:

- My university exchange to the U.S.A.
- Graduating (finally, after all these years)
- Getting my first actual job
- Learning a new language
- Still failing at lucid dreaming and playing guitar
- Another foreign country adventure planned?!
- Personal growth - what, when, how, where, why
- Video games (can't leave THAT out)
- Website? Possibly
- Much ado about Leo McGinnis

I promise I'll feature at least half of the above, and no more than twice as many. See you in a few days!
 
 
23 October 2011 @ 08:26 pm
Sorry I couldn't think of a more eloquent title for this here entry, but I'm kind of writing this ENTIRELY on a whim.

First of all, if your name is Andres and you're reading this, thanks for reminding me that this journal still exists. I haven't made nearly enough use of it since I've been back from the U.S.

Secondly, if your name is Niek and you're reading this before your exams are over: what in the scuttering fuck are you thinking? Get back to work, you worthless slob!

Now that we have all the pleasantries out of the way, let's begin.

Diablo 3
As I said in a comment in my last update (which was way too long ago), I've changed my stance on the Diablo 3 issue. I still don't like the RMAH (real money auction house) and I do not, in any way, accept it. Micro-transactions are fine, but having actual money play an integral part of a game between players doesn't feel like a game to me. So, I've made a decision and I believe that it's a fair one. I will not be using the RMAH, ever. I probably also won't be using the regular AH, but that may vary per character. Certainly, my first planned character will be "use what I find only." I did this for many characters in Diablo 2, and the experience was just much more rewarding (although I enjoyed being decked out in the craziest gear to be fun on occasion). The game simply looks like too much fun to pass and I'm a human being, so I can be easily swayed.

Guild Wars 2
Game is looking to be incredible. During Gamescom in Cologne, Germany and PAX Prime in Seattle, Washington, ArenaNet have once again demonstrated how GW2 is going to be an absolutely fantastic game that I'll likely play the hell out of. I don't think I need to waste too many words on the game right now, but suffice it to say I haven't been as excited for a game since Tales of Symphonia for the GameCube way back in 2004.

The Job Hunt
I need work. Mostly because I need money. So I'm gonna get on that. There are two things I'm looking into right now, but I won't say anything about it unless and until I get one of the jobs. Niek, you already know which one I'm after as I've told you over MSN. The other one is just the backup plan. Not going full-time yet. Gonna get me a simple job first while I work out what kind of career I'm going for with my degree. A year of a "normal" job in my home town, for 24 hours a week or so, while I play video games on off-days sounds good to me. Tomorrow is the last day of my Career Orientation Training at my university and I really hope I can get some solid info on how to get started. Unfortunately Enschede isn't the best place for people with a Master of Arts degree. They want technical stuff like physics and chemistry and that kind of carry-on. But I'm not ready to move to another town yet, and I'm quite done with 5 hours of traveling a day, thank you very much. It gets old after 5 years.

Hobbies
Guitar: hopeless. I practice a few times a week, but I can't seem to muster up the motivation to make it a daily thing. Time isn't an issue, as I have plenty of that.
Lucid Dreaming: went really well till about two weeks ago, when there was a book to read that threw me off. But I can easily stick to it if I can muster up some discipline in the next few days.
Silverwind City Chronicles: it's not like I don't have ideas on how to continue and even finish the story. I'm lacking in the inspiration department. I know where the story is going, but not how it's gonna go there. I haven't written a word since coming back from the U.S. Need to get on this at some point!

Video Games
Sad to say I haven't even been playing as many video games as I'd like. Some of my recent endeavors include playing the heck out of Plants vs. Zombies, which is an absolutely amazing game. Lots of fun. I just started another save file on Zelda: Majora's Mask. And yesterday I began playing Phoenix Wright again as well. Nice to play on my DS, before I go to sleep.

In November there will be The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. They're going to be released within a week of each other (Skyrim on the 11th and Zelda on the 18th in Europe). This means that I'll have a lot of gaming to do. And I'll probably go nuts while playing these games, as both are looking to be very, very awesome. I'll probably post impressions for both here (don't worry, I'll hide it all behind an LJ-cut so as to not spoil any of you while you're playing them).

Driving
I also started getting driving lessons about two weeks ago (or was it three weeks ago? I forget). It'll be a while before I have my license, but I'm working on it. Damn shit is so expensive over here in the Netherlands. But I figured I might as well work on it now while I still have the time. Then later, when I go for the whole career thing, I can at least drive to work if I need to, meaning I might not have to move (as far away). Goal is to have the license before I turn 26, giving me about two months to do it. Should be plenty.
 
 
I don't really know how many of you follow any kind of gaming news, especially when it comes to PC games, but there are a few PC games that I'm really looking forward to (especially now that I have a really powerful machine to play them on).

- Diablo 3
- Guild Wars 2
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Now, there's a very high probability of me having to skip the first one on that list entirely. For those of you who aren't familiar, the Diablo series is, in the words of Blizzard's own Bashiok: "Killing demons for loot." That's pretty much spot on. You fight hordes of undead minions, demons and hellspawn in order to get better equipment, which results in a very fun cycle of fighting tougher and tougher monsters and becoming insanely powerful. Of course, in many gear-based games, this tends to become the primary focus of the game. Gear above all. Nothing wrong with that per se.

One of the problems in Diablo 2 was the fact that lots of people started hacking, botting and otherwise cheating (buying items from illegal websites) to gain an edge over other people. They refused to trade items normally or, heaven forbid, farm the items themselves. Rather, they opted to just fork over some money and get the stuff easier (or, if you want to be grammatically correct: more easily). To me, that takes the fun out of a game. What's worse, Blizzard apparently intends to take matters into their own hands by creating two separate auction houses in Diablo 3 (they'll work similarly to the one in WoW).

You can search for items, list your own, sell them (or not, if someone undercuts you). You can bid on items or choose the (usually) more expensive buyout option for instant gratification. One will be gold-based (using ingame gold, that is), the other will be based on real currency (your hard earned dollars/euros/doubloons/rupees). So now, when I find a really good item that my main character can't use, instead of thinking about alts or friends' characters, my first instinct will be to go "ooh! I wonder how much moolah I can sell this for!" I won't deny it, I'm human and I have flaws. That's how I'll think, and it'll ruin my game.

Some of my friends, whom I've played Diablo 2 with for YEARS (even recently), have already sort of started a personal contest. They're going to see who can make 1,000 euros the fastest (however many weeks or months that might take them)... I mean... There might have been a chance for me to enjoy the game if most or all of my Diablo-loving friends (of which there are only three or four) had opted to completely ignore this AH, but it seems they're embracing it in a way that I simply cannot enjoy. I know how they are. This will be a fulltime thing for them, in all likelihood.

Those of you who know me well are probably aware of my aversion to innovation in general. This just takes things to an extreme. I sincerely hope with all my heart that Guild Wars 2 (which, like Diablo 3, is going to be a multiplayer experience) does not walk down the same path. They'll have microtransactions like the first Guild Wars did, but nothing that will make anyone more powerful. Talking about cosmetic stuff like costumes and such. GW1 had that and it was fine. Now, in Diablo 3, players who are willing to spend real-life money can INSTANTLY buy power that others will have to really work for. True, they do that illegally in D2 as well, but for Blizzard to actively support that instead of trying everything they can to stop it? My god...

If this thing makes it into the final product, I'm sad to say I'm going to have to miss out on what will otherwise be an awesome experience (I have no doubt about that). I simply can't support something like this.

Sorry about this rant. I had to get it off my chest.
 
 
09 July 2011 @ 09:33 pm
Okay, so I'm really enjoying my summer so far. It started right last week, ever since I handed in most of my crap at my university. I'll be graduating in September. But enough about that. Let's talk interesting stuff!

My Let's Play of Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals is going pretty well. I've already recorded and uploaded 21 episodes to YouTube and I'm starting to close in on the final parts of the game. Not quite there yet, though. I imagine I'll need another 10-15 episodes. I have no clue exactly how many I need. I'm really enjoying doing this. I don't know if I'll continue to make Let's Play videos in the future, though, as there's a LOT of work involved in just one vid.



Aside from Lufia II, there's a few upcoming events. Heading to a theme park with some of my friends on Tuesday and there's more stuff to come after that. By this time next weekend I'll likely (hopefully) have A Dance With Dragons by George R. R. Martin. So when I get the book, I'll probably fall off the face of the earth. Well, probably not, but I'll keep avoiding certain parts of the internet until I finish the book. I will not be spoiled!

Other things: Japanese language learning, Silverwind City (my neverending writing project), video games (The Witcher 2 currently) and lots of other stuff to keep me busy. Need to get back into lucid dreaming as well. And I'm totally neglecting my guitar practice. AGAIN. Some things will never change, I suppose.
 
 
27 June 2011 @ 03:33 pm
Update, June 29: Yup, it's official. Dispatch date pushed back to July 14th like it was before. Received an email. They could have let me know a little earlier, damn bastards. From various reports it seems that about 180 people did indeed get the book early, but only those who had opted for Express Shipping. Me, on the other hand, I was to cheap for that so I chose free shipping (meaning my order priority is way at the bottom). Ah well. At least this gives me time to re-read the rest of the books before A Dance With Dragons is delivered at my door. I expected this to happen anyway.

--

Okay, I really really should be working on an essay right now, but I just need to get this off my back first.

On April 28th, when I was still in Laramie, Wyoming (I believe that was actually my last day there, not sure), I pre-ordered A Dance With Dragons through Amazon.de because it was significantly cheaper than anywhere else, and because I'd have been too lazy to take the train to Utrecht or Amsterdam in order to find a brick & mortar bookstore that doesn't suck.

Anyway, the delivery date (estimated) was July 16th, and the book was to be published on the 12th of July both in the US and in the UK. Then, this morning, I get an email from Amazon.de that said that I'd receive the book earlier than expected:

--

Guten Tag,

Mittlerweile gibt es ein neues Erscheinungsdatum zu Ihrer Bestellung (Bestellnummer #303-8835555-5206708) vom 28 April 2011. Daher wird die unten aufgeführte Ware früher als erwartet an Sie versandt:

 George R.R. Martin "A Dance with Dragons: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book Five"
   Bisheriges voraussichtliches Lieferdatum : 16 Juli 2011 - 18 Juli 2011
   Neues voraussichtliches Lieferdatum : 01 Juli 2011

Weitere Information zu Ihrer Bestellung finden Sie unter "Mein Konto" auf unserer Portalseite


--

The email seemed legitimate, but nonetheless I manually logged into Amazon and checked my order and lo and behold, there it was. Estimated delivery date: July 1st. Worried that something might be wrong, I head over Westeros.org to post a thread about this, only to find one had been created ten minutes prior by a German dude who said the same thing about his order.

Some suggest that it might be a database error on Amazon.de's part. While that is a real possibility (and it wouldn't be the first time something like this has happened), new reports keep coming in from people whose order status has been further altered to the tune of: "Your order is now being prepared for dispatch on June 28th." That would mean tomorrow. Checking my account once more, I see that my status too has been altered again. Now the delivery estimate reads June 30th instead of July 1st. Not that the one day matters in particular, but it truly seems like Amazon.de are breaking the trade embargo.

I don't mind at all. Friday I'll be done with all my university stuff, for better or for worse (though I hope for better). So if I get it late (or early) on Thursday, I'll be ecstatic. So apparently people's orders are already being prepared for shipping. Some people in Germany have been told that they can expect their delivery tomorrow (if they chose the most expensive shipping method), while others report June 29th as their expected delivery date. Seeings as I'm in the Netherlands currently, my order is an international one, so the extra day in my case (June 30th) makes sense.

I'll learn soon enough. I'm not holding my breath just yet (not until I get more reports tomorrow from people who have received the book by then). I can wait two extra weeks because I'm still re-reading the series anyway. If I get the book early, though, I'll quite the re-read and dive straight into A Dance With Dragons!

Edit: It seems like the status of the item on the Amazon.de page has once again been adjusted to saying that the item will be released on July 12th. However, my order status still says that mine should be shipped tomorrow. I guess it was indeed some kind of fuck-up and Amazon.de has caught on. Unless some copies already managed to slip out of their warehouses, I think I'll just have to wait those weeks like everyone else. Oh well. I'm fully expecting my order status to be what it was before today when I check back tomorrow.
 
 
22 June 2011 @ 12:27 pm
Don't worry, this isn't gonna be a long 20-page self reflection. There'll be plenty of those coming next month, after this university stuff is behind me. For now, I simply wanted to quickly mention some stuff that I was thinking about.

I've been going to the gym steadily for the past month or so. I'm finally starting to get back into my routine and I'm slowly starting to see progress. My target of 64 kilos by the end of the summer might be a bit hard to reach (still hovering around 61.3-ish) but I am getting stronger, even if I don't look any different in the mirror (yet). That just takes time.

But here's what I want to be able to do by, say, December (keep in mind, I'm weak as fuck right now so for me these are actual accomplishments):

1. 20 consecutive pull-ups (meaning overhand grip - the harder one). Right now I could probably do 3 or 4, if that. I train this by using the assisted pull-up machine, effectively reducing my bodyweight to about 35 kilos (occasionally 30 for the last set if I get really tired). I do 3 sets of 10 reps with that. Over time I aim to reduce this assistance and do actual pull-ups without any help.

2. 100 consecutive proper pushups. I can do like 30-40 now, in a row. The strength is basically already there (the fact that I'm a featherweight helps, too). From here on it's an endurance exercise, but by regularly working out my chest muscles at the gym this should be attainable.

3. 10 consecutive one-handed pushups with each arm. Right now, I can't even do one. I'm starting to do the diamond pushups to get the triceps going. After a few weeks/months of that I'll probably start doing one-handed pushups with the assistance of a basketball or something, before moving on to the real thing. After that it's, again, just practice and endurance.

I don't really care about bench pressing x amount of weight or that stuff. Loads of people brag about that. But how many folks can do one-handed pushups? Even most of the gorilla-sized muscle-heads with arms the size of tree trunks at the gym can't do them. Maybe if I get good at this I can even move on to pushups with just one arm and one leg (that's gonna be a nice balance exercise, too). But we'll get to that later.

Say, something like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3vrJWVO0qU

That's what I want to be able to do eventually. Say, by the end of 2012 or something, right before the world ends.
 
 
14 June 2011 @ 04:05 pm
I've been back in the Netherlands for over a month now, and I don't think I've written a single useful post since my grand return. In fact, that last post I wrote was written while I was boring myself to death at Washington Dulles International with that fun 20-hour layover.

Anyway, a lot has changed since then. And more things have returned to the way they were before I even left for the US.

In some ways I am a changed man, yet for the most part I've reverted to the way I was before I left. The experience I had in Laramie (and elsewhere in the States) will always remain a very important part of me. Yet despite those four awesome months that forced me to live a completely different life, I feel little change on the inside at the moment.

Not three days after I returned, I'd already picked up all my previous habits from before I left. All of my little compulsive tendencies (like the way I open doors, eat food, grab stuff, etc.) have remained intact and aside from the climate and my sleeping hours, nothing really affected my in any obvious way. There was little reverse culture shock or what have you. True, I still miss all of my friends that I made over in Laramie, but at the same time I've reconnected with all of my friends over here in the Netherlands, and it's almost like I never left. It almost seems as if time stood still while I was away.

So here I am, back from a grand adventure. Where do I stand in life at this point in time? Read on after the cut.
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08 May 2011 @ 02:00 am
So, I'm sitting at a "Guava & Java" place inside the Washington Dulles International Airport. Little history: I suck at booking flights and have to suffer through a 20-hour layover, of which about 4 have passed. So I have 16 hours of pure boredom and no sleep ahead of me. But enough about that. I have free internet here, and there's a power socket, so at least I can use my laptop for as long as I like. I'll use the opportunity to write a post (probably a LONG one) on everything that's happened here in the United States. Kinda like a travel log summing it all up, I guess. Dunno how I'll do it exactly, but I'm sure something will materialize when I start writing. As always I'll use an LJ cut to spare those on my friends list the messed up layout of their pages!
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05 May 2011 @ 10:35 am

Do you consider yourself patriotic? If so, how do you express it?

View 1056 Answers


I'm not particularly patriotic. I guess I root for "my country" during the FIFA World Cup and such, but I can't say that I bear any great love for "my country." First of all, it's not really MY country just because I was born here, now is it? The political boundaries that mankind has set up over the last few millennia are artificial and in the grand scheme of things meaningless. I understand why countries exist, why we have to draw these stupid red or black lines on world maps, but really... the world is an awesome place. I love the world.

But I don't love any one particular country more than another. There are so many countries that have things to offer that the Netherlands cannot possibly hope to match. Nature-wise, for certain (and most of you will know how much I love the natural world). Of course, we have some cool stuff, too. But national pride? Puh-lease. The whole idea of independent nations is stupid. It's all one planet. Even if you see the planet as a country, I still wouldn't be patriotic (or terratriotic or whatever), because in the future we might be able to travel to other beautiful worlds.

There's no place like home. But that doesn't mean that "home" should be valued above all other places just because we were born and raised there. The world is more complex and beautiful than that. That is all.
 
 
30 April 2011 @ 11:49 pm
Just kickin' it at my cousin Alma's place in Lakewood, Colorado for a week before I finally fly back to the Netherlands on May 7th (arriving early in the morning on the 9th, long transfer in Washington DC).

It's a lovely place, kinda like a Denver suburb almost. If you go by population it's only slightly smaller than Enschede (by about 10,000 people or so), but it probably beats my hometown in area, hands down. Lovely mountain area all around. Weather is a slight improvement over Laramie, I'd say. A bit less cold, but not by much. And the air is just as dry, if not drier. But I still got my chapstick, so no worries!

Went out to dinner at some pizza place in Golden, CO (no, it wasn't the place a friend recommended to me). Lunch at some Mexican place today. Have got no idea what the rest of the week will bring, but I'll likely want to see downtown Denver at least once.
 
 
27 April 2011 @ 03:19 pm

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20 April 2011 @ 08:27 pm
Inspired by a post on Raptidude.com. A list of things I want to do in my life. Things that have some personal significance, are feasible and can be easily considered “done” when I accomplish them. These goals do not take into account anything that was accomplished before the start of the list (i.e. language goals or the 100+ lucid dreams I've already had). Some of these goals are incremental in nature, which may make the list artificially long. If it every gets prohibitively long I’ll group them together. Ideally I'll want to accomplish as much of these as possible before I'm, say, 50, but that's by no means a stipulation as life doesn't end at 50.

Of course, like the post on the Raptitude.com says, this list is preliminary. Things may be added or removed over the course of my life, depending on what's important to me. The list may change just as I, as a person, may change. I won't post every iteration of the list on LJ, of course. But I'll probably post just the additions I might make. Or I might post when I complete a goal. I may complete a few this year or the next. I'll make a note of those in this list (the note's aren't in the Word version, of course).

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Alright, so remember a while back I wrote about Game of Thrones, the new HBO epic fantasy series based on my favorite books? Well, it premiered last Sunday, April 17th. Thankfully, I was able to watch it. At first I thought I might wait till I got back to the Netherlands and watch the first four episodes in a row. However... I had easy access to it, and I couldn't wait. The temptation was too great.

If you don't know A Song of Ice and Fire (the books), you're missing out. Still, having seen the first episode twice now, I've gathered my thoughts.

When I first saw the episode, I didn't quite know what to think. After all, this vibrant world had come to life on TV and of course a lot of it was different than I imagined it when I read the books. However, I knew that before I watched it, so I adjusted my expectations and accepted beforehand that things would be a little different. Having said that, I did really enjoy it. But I had to watch it a second time to make my thoughts a little more clear. After this second viewing, I'm certain: this series is fantastic.

While the pacing in the first episode is a bit fast, it is quite faithful to the story. Sure, some scenes have been omitted or altered (or scenes not in the book were added in), but all in all, the story is very well told. The story features a lot of awesome characters, and the actors that have been chosen to represent them are great. The first episode doesn't really tell that much yet, but the story is extremely character-driven, and the interactions between the various people of Westeros is vital to the story. I think there's some really good chemistry going on. I especially look forward to more exchanges between Tyrion Lannister and Jon Snow.

The series looks fantastic. Keeping in mind that TV shows have nowhere NEAR the budget that blockbuster movies like The Lord of the Rings do, they really outdid themselves. The Wall is impressive, and all of the locations look real, detailed and vividly alive (albeit again a bit different from how I pictured them, but not dramatically so). I'm still a little concerned as to how they're gonna handle the end of the season, but I'm pretty sure they'll manage.

Screw the bore-fest that was Lost. This stuff's for real. Again, the first episode doesn't really paint a good picture of how the rest of the series is going to be, but...! Within the next two episodes, you'll see why this story is going to be complex, engrossing and in some cases overwhelming. If you've read the books, you'll know roughly what to expect (and I have not been disappointed). If you haven't read the books, no worries! The creators of the show have done the hard work for you. Game of Thrones. Give it a shot. You will NOT regret it. That's a promise. And you can still read the books after watching the episode. New one every Sunday, with episode two coming this weekend! If you're still not convinced after the first three or so episodes, I'll personally make it up to you by giving you all my life savings.*

Until next time!

*I really won't, but I'll give you a shoulder to cry on!
 
 
17 April 2011 @ 03:11 pm
With every passing day it becomes more and more clear that I'm really running out of time here in Laramie. As of this post, counting today (as it's still early), I have twelve full days left in Laramie. However, I'm not gonna talk about leaving just yet. First, I want to take the opportunity to talk a bit about the stuff I learned since I came here, or in what other ways this exchange has been extremely beneficial to me personally.

Things change dramatically when you step into another culture, usually for the better (or just for the different). You have to learn to cope in a somewhat different cultural environment (some would say extremely different, others would say so similar it's hardly a change at all). Whatever one's personal experience and/or culture shock is, your surroundings do change. A different place to live, different people, and all of that jazz. You're far away from your friends and family (usually) and thus you're forced to go out there and make new friends. The thing is, the first two or three weeks feel very different from the rest.

Note: As always, I rambled on and things turned out a bit longer than I'd planned. Read on after the cut.

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09 April 2011 @ 11:56 pm
So it's been a while since the last decent Laramie post, right? Well, today I have a reason to post. I had a great weekend so far. Friday I went to Kim and Almira's place with some friends for a couple drinks, some light dancing and overall a lot of fun. Then today there was the UW International Talent Competition (and an afterparty with free drinks and pizza).

Both were a lot of fun. I didn't take any pictures, but most of my friends did, so as soon as they put them up on Facebook I'll make sure to post them here. Been a bit lazy when it comes to taking pictures. I haven't even uploaded the Heart Mountain ones yet. I'll try to get to it. Tomorrow there's probably not gonna be any time for that. Too much going on at the moment. In any case, for some comments on the parties, read on after the cut.
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Current Music: WillRock - Bare Knuckle Blitz
 
 
06 April 2011 @ 03:35 pm
Alright, so I got a nice and decent webcam and decided to record a little vlog to try it out. It can record Full HD (1080p) videos. I recorded it in 480p widescreen, in order not to kill my little netbook. Apparently even that was a bit much as the video gets a little choppy later on.

Oh well.

Just wanted to get my feet wet. Once I get back home I'll be able to easily record at least 720p videos since that computer doesn't suck. I'm going to try to use my YouTube channel more in the near future (though not a whole lot while I'm still in Laramie. Got a couple things in mind which I talk about in the vid.

Also, this will not have any noticeable effect on my LJ posting. I love to write stuff, and I'll keep doing that. It's just that I like recording myself with a camera because it forces me to actually talk about stuff that I haven't planned fully. I mean, I do my writing very fast, in general. I don't really edit what I write here (hence the numerous typographical errors and grammatical inconsistencies etc.), but I can still fix some major issues. You wouldn't believe how much cleaning up I have to do even in a small post like this. I tend to ramble, so I often delete half of what I wrote.

Anyway, just trying out my new cam. Need to shoot some footage from a computer that doesn't suck.


 
 
03 April 2011 @ 07:31 pm
Okay, so I’m technically still in the car as I’m writing this, but you don’t know that, so just pretend that you’re reading something I wrote up later.

Yesterday, at around 06:00, we left Laramie and drove all the way to Cody and Powell (Wyoming). In other words, the Heart Mountain area. It was kind of an optional field trip for the students taking the Heart Mountain class (hint: I’m one of them). There were only like six students (including myself) and some others. More after the cut.

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01 April 2011 @ 05:00 pm
I think I'm going to make A Self Reflection into a kind of series, where I discuss certain aspects of my personality and how it fits with a certain theme in my life. No schedule. This will purely be on a "when I feel like it" basis. Last time I spoke at length about one of my favorite movies (I'll not name it again). This time it's going to be something that blessed and haunted me throughout my growing up into the wonderful being I am today: video games!

The last one was Friends Only, but this one is a little less deep and psychological, so I'll leave it for the world to see (it'll likely reach a full two additional people that way!).

As some of you know, I used to be somewhat of a hardcore gamer back in the day. I grew up with video games. I've lived and breathed them ever since I was, what, four years old? It all started with Pac-Man and the original Super Mario Bros. At the tender age of six (or was it seven?) we got our Super Nintendo Entertainment System. That was, I think, in 1991 or 1992. I don't remember exactly which. But that day marked my transformation into a pretty serious video gamer.

I have to say, though, my parents prevented me from playing more than maybe two hours a day, although they wouldn't hesitate to let me play a little longer than that on Saturdays and Sundays. I just mean to say that all in all, I had a balanced childhood and did, in fact, play outside the house a lot with my friends. I spent time outside well into my teens. I didn't turn into a hermit until after age 18 for the most part. Heck, even now I'm not that much of a hermit. I just like the privacy of my own home and the convenience of my computer. And most of my friends (even the childhood ones) are usually to be found online, so there's no real issue there. Most of us used to be gamers, and some are still.

Of course, in recent years (say, the last four or five), I kinda fell out of the loop of video games, and this post will deal mostly with that. I'll start of with my video game history and how I evolved, as a gamer, when I got older. I'll talk about the good and the bad. I have a feeling it's going to be long, so to prevent from your friends pages to look all mangled I'll utilize my favored LJ-cut right nao.

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01 April 2011 @ 08:52 am

Describe an April Fools' prank from your life that went horribly awry.

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I'll describe one that might go horribly awry if it happens today.

Anyone who tries to pull a practical joke on me will end up in the hospital. That's all I'm gonna say on the matter and I'm not even kidding.

I. HATE. April. Fool's. Day.