I scream, you scream, we all scream, oh god stop the screaming
I am sad and very discouraged by everything right now, so let’s take a break from the garbage for a moment and look at some funnies.
The early asdmovies were okay, but the more recent ones are more my style of humor. Particularly 11, 12, and 13.
TikToK is always a source of amusement.
I’m done. Sorry.
Book Review: Moby Dick (Melville)
Have I read this before: Yes! I remember reading this in 10th grade
Review: This is another one of those “everyone considers it a classic” classics and is one that, I think, gets an unworthy amount of hate. I suspect a good amount of that comes from people being forced to read it in school, which really seems to kill a lot of peoples’ enjoyment of some really good books.
And this is a good book. I may be biased because I love books about sailing/ships/the sea, though. Yes, it is very tedious in places, but I don’t think it’s as bad as everyone says it is*. It’s got this weird mix of technical discussions mixed with infuriatingly beautiful prose that you would not expect to find in a book that’s basically an encyclopedic guide to whaling. Like, every 7th chapter is this beautiful philosophical reflection on some grand theme and then the chapters between are all, “here’s a detailed, graphic description of how you decapitate a sperm whale.” That contrast throws you around a lot as a reader. I kinda dig it.
Favorite part: There are a few phrases that stood out to me as examples of that “philosophical reflection” and/or beautiful prose I mentioned above. Like this one:
“Some days elapsed, and ice and icebergs all astern, the Pequod now went rolling through the bright Quito spring, which at sea, almost perpetually reigns on the threshold of the eternal August of the Tropic. The warmly cool, clear, ringing perfumed, overflowing, redundant days, were as crystal goblets of Persian sherbet, heaped up – flaked up, with rose-water snow.”
“Consider once more, the universal cannibalism of the sea; all whose creatures prey upon each other, carrying on eternal war since the world began. Consider all this; and then turn to this green gentle, and most docile earth; consider them both, the sea and the land; and do you not find a strange analogy to something in yourself? For as this appalling ocean surrounds the verdant land, so in the soul of man there lies one insular Tahiti, full of peace and joy, but encompassed by all the horrors of the half known life. God keep thee! Push not off from that isle, though canst never return!”
[Here’s Starbuck talking to Ahab, warning him that it will be his obsession with the While Whale that will doom him as opposed to anything else.]
“Thou hast outraged, not insulted me, sir; but for that I ask thee not to beware of Starbuck; though wouldst but laugh; but let Ahab beware of Ahab; beware of thyself, old man.”
[And here’s Ahab, several chapters later, talking about how his pursuit of the whale is basically pre-determined and that he is not the one in control of his obsession.]
“Ahab is forever Ahab, man. This whole act’s immutably decreed. ‘Twas rehearsed by thee and me a billion years before this ocean rolled. Fool! I am the Fates’ lieutenant; I act under orders.”
*Though that might just be coming from the fact that my previous book was The Last of the Mohicans, and Cooper’s writing style is much more tedious than Melville’s in my opinion, even if the topics in The Last of the Mohicans weren’t as…generously described as they are in Moby Dick.
Weezer, what the HELL IS THIS??
I love this, holy freaking crap. That chorus is catchy as hell.
Van Weezer – which I’m assuming will contain songs with this type of sound – comes out on May 7th. Contrast this sound with the sound of the OK Human album they just released at the beginning of the year:
I like when bands experiment with different sounds like this. Coldplay has gotten a lot of crap for this kind of thing, but people need to lay off because Coldplay is
untouchable goodness allowed to experiment just like everyone else.
I don’t have anything else to say today, haha. I just wanted to make you aware of this fantastic song in case you hadn’t heard it.
Jacob deGrom pitched a beautiful game tonight. 15 strikeouts. He also got a couple of hits and an RBI because, you know, he’s deGrom and that’s what he does.
Crazy good. I hope the rest of the season is like this for him and he gets his third Cy Young.
Jingle Bells 2: Jesus’ Revenge
Back in December 2019 (GOD, REMEMBER NORMALITY?????), I posted this awesome 7/8 time version of Sleigh Ride:
Well, now you get this beautiful piece:
Welcome to TIME SIGNATURE HELL, CHILDREN
I don’t know if it’s the sleep deprivation or because today was horrible or what, but that key smash in that first 1/8 time bar is hysterical.
Some of the comments are great, too.
- i was like “hey this isn’t so bad” then i was proven extremely wrong
- Everybody gangster till the quadratic formula finds its way into music theory
- First 10 second I thought “well it’s not the worst”, couple of seconds later I got anxiety
- “Oh it’s actually not that bad” Key smash “Oh ok”
- I can’t get over the 25 whole notes at 1000 beats per minute in 100/4 time.
- Ah yes, the snare solo is my favorite part of jingle bells
Timmy? Tommy? Whatever.
So for the first time in a looooong time, I had a dream last night that was devoid of violence, death, or unimaginable horrors. It was actually quite entertaining, so I shall share it with you here.
In this dream, Nate and I have a kid.* And just as would probably happen in real life, the kid is second in importance after Jazzy. Like, the kid will be sitting on the floor next to Jazzy’s food bowl and I’d pick up the bowl to refill it for Jazzy before picking up the kid. And we just kind of…leave him places around the house, like on a bookshelf or behind the TV or under the bed. He’s just there.
(Parents of the Year!)
Anyway, at one point in the dream I realize that CPS is going to take our kid away if we don’t start paying more attention to him. So I tell Nate that I’m going to get a special clock made. This clock will have the name of our kid written in place of the “12” and the “1” to remind us to spend time with the kid during those hours.
The clock arrives and the name that replaces the “12” and the “1” is “Timmy.” Now in the dream I’m super confused at this point, because I’m pretty sure we named our kid Tommy. I spend a good amount of time trying to get Nate to say the kid’s name to confirm what it actually is, but he never says it. So I eventually just have to show him the clock and ask, “what did we actually name our kid? Is it Timmy or is it Tommy?”
Nate’s pretty sure it’s Tommy too, so my next question is who the hell is Timmy? And rather than take responsibility for the fact that we’re screw-ups who can’t remember what we named our kid and thus bought a clock with the wrong name on it, Nate and I quickly make up a guy named “Timmy” – we say he’s Nate’s cousin – and that’s why we made the mistake on the clock.
Then we’re all like, “aw, man, nobody likes Timmy!” “Screw Timmy!” “Everything about Timmy is a mistake!” and we renounce the hell out of him to try to justify why we can’t keep the clock anymore. We don’t want some loser’s name on it, after all.
So after the clock is disposed of, I tell Nate that we can’t call Tommy anything other than Tommy because we need to make sure we remember his name and the only way to do so is to just repeat it constantly.
Then I immediately go up to the kid and start cooing at him like “ooooh, who’s my special Happy Giggle Toes Diaper Boy? My Fancy Rude Dude Red Pants???” and I can feel Nate glaring at me because I’m calling him everything but Tommy.
Then I woke up.
Anyway. Weird dream. And it further supports our decision to NEVER HAVE KIDS EVER.
*Okay, so this technically falls under the “unimaginable horrors” category because of that, but I’ll let it slide since the dream was overall quite hilarious and not of the “oh god oh god I have a kid I’ve ruined my life” style.
I don’t know why DJ Earworm has suddenly ramped up his non-Decade of Pop uploads, but I am DIGGING IT.
Here’s his latest:
I love that this mashup contains music from decade right before I started my Decade of Music Project (well, okay, it contains 2009 which was technically in my Decade, but whatevs). This is music from junior high, high school, and undergrad for me. Thus, TONS of nostalgia. There’s a lot of those early- to mid-2000s songs that I only ever got to hear on the radio while I was in my room making stupid stop-motion movies. I didn’t yet have an iPod and because CDs were too freaking expensive. There are also a good number of songs in there that were some of my first purchases on iTunes.
Super cool! Is it nostalgic for you, too?
Moby (not the singer)
So remember how I said yesterday that the warm season had started?
HA I LIED
It’s cold and snowy and gross and thus a perfect day to treadmill and read. I finished The Last of the Mohicans last time I treadmilled, so I started my next “M” book today: Moby Dick. And because of the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon (kinda sorta?) I noticed this post on Tumblr this afternoon:
That’s…that’s really accurate. Also, some of the comments:
Yeah, that whale chapter, haha. “Whales have lungs and are warm-blooded, but FUCK THAT they live in the water so they’re fish.”
I’m only about 40% of the way through right now but it’s supposed to snow again on Thursday, so maybe I’ll be able to finish it then.
It’s Not Spring Until I Get a Weird Sunburn
This glorious thing is brought to you by the following thought process: “naw, man, I don’t need to take off my Garmin in order to put sunscreen on. I know how much of my wrist it covers.”
At least it’s not as bad as this atrocity.
*insert depressing title here*
I am feeling so very discouraged today. It feels like this pandemic will never end because people are so selfish and stupid. Every time one part of the world takes a step forward, it’s like we take two steps back somewhere else in the world.
And when it is eventually over (assuming that happens), then what? What is there even to look forward to anymore? Climate change? Water shortages? More disease?
It’s like there’s no point anymore. Things are only going to get worse.
OH HEY IT’S THE APRIL LIST AND ah, screw it
- Make icebergs and see how they float.
- There’s a realtor up here named Ken Richter and his realty signs are the most fantastically nerdy things I’ve ever seen. He plays on the whole “Richter Scale” theme. I always want to take a picture of one but there’s always people around and I always feel weird about taking pictures of…well, anything in public.
(Except other peoples’ cats.)
- Edit: I found the Remax website that talks about him and they have the little scale graphic he uses:
- Was anyone else absolutely terrified of Gossamer when they were a kid (and perhaps even now)? I think I’ve mentioned this before on here at some point, but I saw a .gif of him on Twitter and now I’m freaking traumatized.
I’ve had the opening song to “The Pajama Game” stuck in my head ALL FREAKING DAY, so here it is for you to get stuck in your head as well:
UGH I don’t have much to say today, sorry. Life is meaningless and the world is a constant disappointment.
Book Review: The Last of the Mohicans (Cooper)
Have I read this before: Nope! I think it was because I could never find a physical copy of the book. But thanks to Kondle, that is no longer an issue! Thanks, Kondle!
Review: So here we have yet another book that needs this disclaimer: there are obvious racial stereotyping issues with the subject matter of this book – namely, the broad “noble savage” treatment that Cooper gives the Native Americans in the story in addition to how most of the Native Americans’ dialogue (when they’re not speaking Delaware) is basically just a bunch of grunts. The Last of the Mohicans was written in 1826, though, and is set in 1757 where these stereotypes were likely considered to be “true,” so that might put it in context, at least. As was the case with Uncle Tom’s Cabin and Gone with the Wind, these issues shouldn’t be dismissed but should be actively considered while reading the book in its context. At least, that’s my opinion.
Anyway. The dramatic difference between Maya Angelou’s writing style (I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings being the last book I read) and James Fenimore Cooper’s writing style is serious. It took me a while to get into The Last of the Mohicans because Cooper’s writing is so formal and even and he digs those long-ass sentences that meander on for a whole paragraph. But honestly? Once I got used to it, I kind of liked it. And the story itself is good, too. It jumps into the action quite quickly and remains very solidly an “action” story, despite what the writing style would have you believe.
Favorite part: I’m pretty sure Hawkeye’s gun, Killdeer, is mentioned more than some of the actual main characters. Hell, it’s basically a character all on its own. I think there were a total of like 10 phrases that Hawkeye spoke in which he didn’t mention Killdeer. I find that hilarious.
Look, it’s Anscombe’s quartet on steroids!
Q: What is Anscombe’s quartet?
A: Anscombe’s quartet is a set of four datasets, each with 11 observations on two variables x and y, that all have (nearly) identical descriptive statistics but appear very different when graphed. The datasets all have approximately the same means (for both X and Y), variances (for both X and Y), correlations, linear regression lines, and coefficients of determination. But they look like this when graphed:
The idea behind the quartet of datasets, developed by Francis Anscombe in 1973, was to demonstrate the importance of graphing/visualizing your data in addition to just looking at its summary values.
One thing that’s not known about these datasets is exactly how Anscombe created them. But a 2017 paper titled “Same Stats, Different Graphs: Generating Datasets with Varied Appearance and Identical Statistics through Simulated Annealing” shows a method for creating differently “shaped” datasets that all have the same summary values. In this paper, the “Datasaurus Dozen” are produced: a set of 12 differently-shaped datasets (when graphed) that have the same summary stats. The paper talks about a method used to create these datasets.
It’s super cool and very interesting. Check it out here!
A Rant Subdued
So I had this big ol’ rant planned out today ‘cause I’m SO FREAKING FRUSTRATED with how poorly the vaccine rollout is going up here in Canada and I’m SO FREAKING FRUSTRATED at how stupid people are being with their failure to follow COVID-related rules (the daily new COVID cases in AB are back in the 1,000s; thanks, losers)…but then I saw this thing and couldn’t stop laughing, so you get that instead of my rambling nonsense:
…for another “Stupid Crap from Tumblr/YouTube” post because I’m equal parts sad and FURIOUS WITH THE WORLD and so I have nothing constructive to say.
Indoor vs. Outdoor
Prior to last year, I hadn’t run much AT ALL since mid-2017 (pre-knee injury), and even back then I wasn’t at all consistent with it. Maybe a 10K every once and a while.
But over the past year or so, I’ve really found a consistency with it and have enjoyed running twice a week. It’s a good way to break up the walking days (especially since there’s only like two routes I walk anymore due to pandemic-driven fear of public transit) and it lets me get home faster when I’ve got a lot of work to do.
But one thing I’ve really noticed is that running outside is SO MUCH EASIER than running on a treadmill. I had been going to Anytime Fitness at start of 2020 and had been running about six of my 15 daily miles on the treadmill, but of course once COVID hit and the gyms shut down, I spent all my walking/running time outside. My outdoor runs started around 10K in April/May of last year and increased to 14 miles, which is now my consistent running distance. And it’s pretty easy. Some runs are a lot harder than others for various reasons, but in general 14 miles is a nice achievable distance for me.
But inside on a treadmill? There’s no way I could do 14 miles. As an example, the weather was supposed to be pretty cold and crappy here today, so rather than risk getting stuck in wet blowing snow, I decided to just use my treadmill and walk my distance instead of doing the usual walk 2 miles/run 14 miles that I typically do on Thursdays.
Well, I HATE skipping a run when I can avoid it, so about four miles into my treadmill walk, I turned off my Kindle and decided to run a few miles. I did a 10K and it was really, really hard to finish, haha. It’s probably a combination of how warm the house is compared to outside and the fact that you use slightly different muscles (or use them a different way at least) when on a treadmill than when running normally, but BLAH. It’s depressing that I can’t go as far inside as outside.
Anyway. Just complaining.
I am in a BAD MOOD and don’t have anything fun to say, so here’s a dude that is a ridiculously smooth
UGH FREAKING PEOPLE SLJFLSAKGFJALSGHFLAG
So Alberta’s going back to the Phase 1 restrictions because people suck and can’t follow the rules and now variant cases are making up like 60% of our new daily cases (which have risen back to the ~1,000 per day level).
I just want to see my mom. It’s been FIFTEEN MONTHS.
I hate everyone.
YAY we finally got to watch the Mets play today!
…And they lost. Which is unusual for them in their first game of the season.
But maybe that means the rest of the year will go well, huh?
Book Review: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Angelou)
Have I read this before: Nope.
Review: There are a lot of coming-of-age stories on my list, and I have mixed feelings about them. Some of them I’ve found worthwhile, some of them have kind of fallen by the wayside for me. This coming-of-age story probably sits about at the “neutral” point for me. It’s very beautifully written and it’s memorable in the sense that it’s a story about a young girl who is not characterized as either “all good” or “all bad” – which is in part because it’s semi-autobiographical and is thus centered around a real person (Maya herself). It seems like a lot of coming-of-age stories center on a protagonist who is more moral than everyone else or smarter than everyone else or more disadvantaged than everyone else or who makes poorer choices than everyone else. So it’s nice to read about someone who’s “real” – not only in the sense that she’s a real person and not fictional, but that she’s not portrayed as being one extreme or the other. It was a refreshing change from those extremes in this type of genre.
Favorite part: You can really see the influences of individual people and individual actions on Maya. The book does a very good job at showing how one action or one word of encouragement or one criticism can really affect a person’s life, especially a young person.
You may have noticed (or not, depending on how much of a baseball fan you are, haha) that I posted nothing about opening day yesterday.
That’s because the Mets didn’t play.
The Mets didn’t play because they were supposed to play the Nationals.
And the Nationals have five players quarantined due to COVID.
No COVID cases at all throughout all of Spring Training for any team, but right before the seasons starts…of course.
So yeah, great start. They might play tomorrow, though!
Edit: nope, that whole series is getting delayed. They’re playing their first game on Monday against the Phillies.