Thursday, October 29, 2009

A Hook of a Title...

... to pull you right in. Not much has happened since last time, other than that I'm utterly sleep deprived for reasons that neither make me too studious nor addicted to coke.


Was that too jarring a drug reference for an extended-family-friendly blog? Perhaps. (I seriously don't do coke. Jesus!) But it was either that or no post at all today. Just kidding. I probably could have begun by talking about something else, although it's far too late for that. We're already three (?) paragraphs into this shit!

Otherwise, school is, like, really hard. Except I'm not doing any of the work, so I don't know how it's still so hard! Again, just kidding. I am doing some of the work, but only enough to keep me sitting pretty on a pile of 'A's come week ten. I realize some of you might now deduce that I'm actually working very hard to keep up decent grades - and a pile of them, no less! - but that simply isn't the case. Here's the deal: I'm a Senior now, and I know how to do what I need to do to get by, then stop. Seventy pages of literary analysis from the course reader? No thanks. How about I read the first and last paragraphs just before class starts? One insightful comment later, and I'm on the professor's good side for a whole two hours!

Lather, rinse, and repeat.

Oh, and this weekend is Halloween, and all my friends are coming back into town! And Natalie Portman's Shaved Head is playing for free on Friday night! And I've got a sweet costume figured out! Bah! I feel I'm about one exclamation mark away from totally damning my good time, so I'm gonna quit while I'm ahead. It's off to the bars for me% *

*what I'm going to start using when I feel like I'm one exclamation mark away from totally damning my good time from now on.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Thesis Crap

So on top of all the other madness that's been going down lately, most of my free time has been consumed by this horrible thing called a Thesis Prospectus, which is due in four days. Then, on November 4th, I'll present this prospectus to a jury of Honors College peers (oh God) and my thesis advisor for signed approval to begin the actual year-long project.

As such, I haven't really blogged much. What I figured I could do, then, is kinda just cheap out and copy and paste onto here the "subject" section of this fourteen-page document so you'd all know what I'll be stressing over until late May. This way, if anyone has any brilliant ideas as to any direction I could take either the research or creative portions of my final thesis project, you can let me know!


Subject: I intend to explore the subject of family life in modern America, as it might be analyzed in postmodern literature. Technology – and, specifically, its increasing relevance in daily life through media, the Internet, and various methods of communication – will play a large role. The point of collision between these two most crucial elements of the 21st century is what I’ll attempt to capture through my writing. The end result will reveal how increasingly difficult it is to remain a sociable, multi-dimensional human being in an era glutted with devices and concepts that aid us in doing anything but.

In selecting an appropriately charged nexus between the issues I’d like to address, the implications of reality media (I’m hesitant to limit this discussion just to ‘reality television’) trumped all other frontrunners. It’s a law of physics that the very act of observation changes that which is being observed. What happens, then, to an identity when it is continuously subjected to the nameless face of an ever-present spectator? How would any sane individual react to their private life becoming public? Does this shift adversely affect interpersonal relationships? When considering our need for social interaction, is the family unit the only remaining milieu capable of functioning without technology’s aid?

Americans already spend a great deal of time both maintaining and tracking inauthentic digital personas. We are a society governed by a need to interact, but the methods through which we’re choosing to do so are only succeeding in isolating us further. Social networking sites – including Facebook, Twitter, and the Blogosphere – are beginning to compensate for a legitimate, authentic understanding of other human beings. Even our own personal mannerisms, interests, and daily activities – in short, that which makes us each uniquely human – are being converted into lists, links, and streaming news feeds that serve as hypersensitive testament to the knowledge that we’re all on display, all the time. Coupled with our increasing propensity for personalized entertainment – we’ll watch it when we want, where we want, how we want – and the technological means for turning everyday reality into near-instantaneous Youtube sensations, the line between spectator and spectacle is blurring.

Our collective consciousness is now more aware than ever of an all-seeing presence that governs who we know, how we behave, and what we desire. Media is defined by everything, everywhere, all the time: it’s life. The world, William Shakespeare once wrote, is a stage. As of 2009, his metaphor has taken a distressingly literal turn.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

In Other News...

Apple iphone. Allowing dumb people to act smart since 2007.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Nuckin' Futs

Sometimes, life is just crazy. Or, as my former NZ roommate/queen-bitch-of-the-universe Shannon likes to write it, CA-RAZY! (and yes, I seriously just lifted her version straight off of facebook. Man, how I despise that girl!). I've got shit-tons of schoolwork that I don't want to do, even more people I want to hang out with but don't have the time for, and a whole future staring me dead in the eye, daring me to blink (which is the only thing I do a lot of, in this metaphor). About all that's left is for me to sit real complacent-like in the here and now, blissing out on the good stuff while it lasts.

Also, it's 1:02 am as I type this sentence. There are a group of wasted girls ten feet outside my window, shouting about some sorority and wondering where Ali went. One of them also has a rather nasty cough.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Passion Pit Postponed!

And so begins another night of aimless drinking. We even had people coming into town for this one! Guess the living room's in for a bit of a senseless beating.

Speaking of drinking in the living room, the other night my roomie Chris had some of his sophomore/junior friends over for an evening of wine and enchiladas around a roaring fireplace. Precious, right? As it turned out, the enchiladas took two hours longer than necessary because no one had a glass baking pan, I was the only one in the house with any wine, and the fire... well, the fire worked well, effectively ruining my planned description for a trifecta of disaster.

Also, can I just comment on the obscene amount of quality television shows we're being subjected to these days? I now present an exhaustive list (because if it's not on here, it ain't good): LOST, Mad Men, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Glee, Bored to Death, 30 Rock, Parks & Recreation, and Modern Family. If you aren't watching, get to it. If you are, you've seen, you've heard, you know. What more is there to say?

I feel like this post has been a bit of a cop-out. My apologies. Maybe I'll post something better when things start going well... except for television, which is already ahead of the curve.

Monday, October 5, 2009

My Buddy Jeff

So today I have a treat for you all: a picture of my friend/hallmate/Anaheim-shenanigans-cohort, Jeff.

Jeff hails all the way from some little town of 200 in Michigan and is currently still slaving away in the Disney College Program as a server at Frontierland's River Belle Terrace. He's also the one who, in his childhood, named his pet gerbil Brandy (after the singer), his turtle Rosie (after the talk show host), and his cat AJ (after the Backstreet Boys singer).

Take a GOOD look at this picture and, should you ever run into him, don't tell the poor sap I ripped it off Facbook.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

On the Seinfeld Reunion...

When I was younger, Seinfeld ruled the Earth. My dad loved it, and although the show's blatant obscenities, sexually propelled plot lines, and overwhelming narcissistic tone were all definitely taboo topics in the Evert household, I was still allowed to watch Jerry, Kramer, Elaine, and George screw each other over every week.

We laughed. We stared in horror. Often, my Mom frowned. I learned that shrinkage was normal, freeballin' was super fun, and that not only was masturbating a common adult activity, but that if you abstained from it for even a 48-hour period, you'd win lots and lots of money.

Although plots grew more outlandish as the seasons progressed, when I heard talk of a final episode, I felt devastated. No more Seinfeld? Say what now?

The series finale - broadcast on May 14, 1998 - unfortunately coincided with one of my brother's little league baseball games. I sat on the sidelines, horrified, as inning after inning brought me ever closer to missing Seinfeld's waning glory. Even worse, my parents didn't seem to care! Their allegiance to the show: a scam. As I whined and complained and devised elaborate methods for my brother to get home without us, a neighboring parent grew tired of my shrill, 11-year-old voice.

"I'll take Sean home, Shannon. Let this kid watch his fucking show."

Thank you, Jill Fincham!

And when all was said and done, I sat, mortified, in the living room. Seinfeld... over? The group... incarcerated? Disappointing, guys. Very disappointing.

But then eleven years marched by, each one forcing my face a little further into the mud that you should all visualize right now as just below my life's invisible timeline. And so now here we are, in 2009. Terrorists attacked. College (pretty much) happened. I know what HBO is. I know a guy named Larry David even exists. Most important, he's staging a Seinfeld comeback! And it's being billed as an "anti-reunion!"

If someone had sat my fat little self down in 1998 and said, "Don't worry, AJ; a really, really long time from now there's going to be more Seinfeld in store for you, but it's going to be better than ever and by the time it happens the eleven years between then and now will have seemed like nothing at all," I would have ran away and hid in my closet. Thank God it didn't happen.

There's a lot more I could say about the crazy nature of this whole situation (like how I randomly happen to have free HBO for the exact three months that this season of Curb Your Enthusiasm is airing... creepy!), but I won't because I'm hungry. Plus, I've got some Seinfeld to watch! Hell yeah!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Loud Sex

So my roommate Josh has this terribly annoying Canadian fuck buddy who spends most of her time staring at me awkwardly/talking about how much she hates America/being a total annoying bitch, and when she's not doing any of those things, she's in Josh's room having loud sex.

But first I should probably clarify Josh's role in this whole thing. He's short, has a Minnesotan accent, smokes constantly, sports a potbelly, is a grad student in Chemistry, and is basically the last person on the planet you would ever want to imagine having loud sex in the room next to yours.

As I type this, Josh is in the living room with this girl from up north. She's moaning like crazy, saying things like, "Ohhh, God!" and "Ahhhhh, Josh! Ahhhhh!" And then "Ohhhhhhhhh!" again and again and again. I have my music on, but there's pretty much no hope in blocking her fucking obnoxious voice. Even when they're not screwing around, she's really, really loud.

Not to mention the spanking. It turns out Josh is a spanker. He likes to spank swift, and he likes to spank loud. I estimate the spanking will begin about fifteen minutes from now. Mark my words. I'll be sitting here, typing out the last sentence or two of this post, and all I'll be able to concentrate on is the brutal snap of flesh on flesh that will resound, like a dense library book dropped on a tabletop, from twelve feet over.

How did this guy get this girl? Why would any guy put up with such a girl? What kind of crazy, drug-induced euphoria is spurring such a repulsive attraction? It's like train wreck sex: I don't want to concentrate on the sounds, but at the same time I can't turn away.

They've already moved to the bedroom. It's explicit, what's going on, and I dont feel that further description will do any of us a favor. Just be glad you aren't here. I know I wish I wasn't.