Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Day 28: The Tyranny of the Blank Page

I'm going to start this blog post with a list of the things I have accomplished today.  I am doing this by way of an apology, because I don't want these posts to devolve into mere diary entries.  I began this blog with the notion that the unexamined life is not worth living.  Unfortunately, I'm so busy living, right now, that there seems to be no time for reflection.  Hopefully, as you go over this list, you'll be sufficiently impressed and forgive me my lack of examination.

  1. Cleaned up baby toys;
    There are ALWAYS a venerable land mine of these across our home, as little Oliver hasn't yet learned to not just drop the toy where you stand when you lose interest in it.
  2. Put up clean dishes
  3. Loaded the dishwasher and wiped down the kitchen counters
  4. Killed a trail of invading ant seeking to sup upon the sugary remnants of our collection of empty aluminum cans.
  5. Took our collection of empty aluminum cans (still containing more than a few sugar-induced coma-ants inside) to the recycling drop-off
  6. Folded two loads of laundry and washed three more
    There's still a load of laundry (towels) to go, but that'll have to wait until tomorrow
  7. "Cooked" (secretly, no baking is required, don't tell anyone) a test cake
    Our church hosts a "Men's Cake Bake" most summer's in support of the church-wide mission trip.  It's basically what it sounds like; any one who wants to participate can make a cake, the one rule is that the confectioner behind the cake should be male.  A competition for best cake ensues (decoration, taste, size, etc.) and people are encouraged to bid on the cakes.  It is not unusual for the cakes to sell for HUNDREDS of dollars (not, I imagine, because they are JUST THAT GOOD, but because the people at our church are JUST THAT GENEROUS.)  This year's rendition was to be held tomorrow, but a long-time member of the church unexpectedly passed away last Sunday afternoon and his funeral is going to be held at the church tomorrow.  Naturally, we've pushed the cake bake back a week. 
  8. Loaded the lawnmower and weedeater into my car
  9. Unloaded said lawnmower and weedeater, along with three gallons of paint and various other painting supplies at our new house.
    Notice: our lawn mower is heavy and unwieldy. 
  10. Cut the front and side yard with the push mower
    This activity was hampered because Southwest Virginia is in it's natural and all-to-consistent early summer time weather pattern of afternoon showers.  At one point, I was actually driven under the protective cover of the front porch.  (WE OWN A FRONT PORCH!)
  11. Performed my best billy goat act and weed eated (weed ate?) the backyard as well.  The back yard is seriously very steep and very rocky.  I don't mind having a steep and rocky backyard; it's going to be a really fun place to play when Oliver gets older, but it's definitely no place for a lawn mower of any kind.  
  12. Dusted myself off, broke open one of our brand new $25 gallon paint cans ($25 seems like a lot, to me, but I'm told it could have been worse) and commenced to "cutting in" (a new term I recently learned upon Googling, "How to paint a room") around the edges of the room.  I probably managed to finish about half the room before running COMPLETELY out of steam.
  13. Loaded the grass cutting equipment back up (did I mention our lawn mower is heavy, because IT IS), drove home, and upon arrival unloaded the equipment and put it back into it's place of belonging.
Incidentally, when you Google, "How to paint a room" you will find many a web page and video dedicated to giving you the finer points.  The problem with all of them, so far as I can tell, is they ALL make it sound easy.  I am finding it is not easy.  It is hard work, and aggravating to boot.  I feel there is some dark secret concerning how to paint along the edges of a wall that is somehow forbidden to be revealed to a layman like myself.

I did consume some media today (what am I, an animal?).  Namely, I've been watching Hank and John Green on YouTube of late.  I suppose I first heard about these two long ago and have since seen their work referenced many times and from many different places.  I can't really say exactly why I finally started watching them; except that maybe it's gone along with my search online for content to replace cable television.  I must admit that I was no big fan of people doing their thing on YouTube back in it's infancy.  There are a great many things that can be videoed and then uploaded (every minute over 30 HOURS of video is currently being uploaded to YouTube), and only a very minuscule portion of that will I find in any way interesting.    

As it turns out, though, YouTube has grown up quite a lot in it's ability to provide content for each specific user (namely, me), tailored for that user's preferences (namely, mine).  Some great things are being produced on YouTube (I feel like I've mentioned this before).

Hank and John were early progenitors of great material on YouTube.  Back in 2007 they had an interesting idea.  Could they, for one whole year, go without communicating with one another textually (turns out, almost, but not quite); and during that year they'd take turns making a video diary entry to each other, one per day.  I've gone back and have started to watch each day, starting from January 1, 2007.  It is amazing stuff.

Since then, they've continued to vlog (easily my least favorite "Internet word"), and have even branched out to other video projects (scishow, crashcourse, truthorfail, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, etc.); all free, all AMAZING.

I don't mind saying I'm envious of Hank and John.  I wish I'd thought to be that awesome and had the follow through way back in 2007.  If I had my dream, I'd love to work on a video series about all things computer science AND deserve an audience AND find that audience just as the Green's have deserved and found theres.

Anyway, check them out if you haven't already, but be prepared to be hooked.

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