Daily Shoot #1: Forks

My original idea for today's shoot was to take an artsy photo of band stands. However I couldn't get into the band room so, being the lazy person that I am, decided instead to grab a handful of forks and take a picture of them. I have a lot of forks so this was pretty easy to do. For those of you wondering, the policeman holds tea bags. Yummy, yummy tea bags.



London Redux

I hate crying in public. I hate crying in front of one person who isn't my mother to be perfectly honest. I generally dislike crying because it's a major sign of weakness and you never know who might overhear. But on Thursday, and indeed for the past few days, I've been crying quite a lot. As Dr. Fillerup rightly pointed out, I'm under quite a lot of stress and it seems crying is the only remedy at the moment.
A situation that has been brewing since last semester is close to boiling. My roommates and I are no longer speaking and they actively ignore me when it's possible. I've tried my best to ignore and live with the current setup, but when you dread going back to your own room because of the hostility that lives there you know there's something wrong. I've been through this before (though it was rather more distressing as those with long memories will remember) and I hate the idea of going through it again. I've spoken to my RA and I hope that by making a roommate agreement things won't get worse will possibly get better, but given the knots in my stomach, I wouldn't say I have a lot of hope. I'm more worried about retaliation to be honest but that's largely because I'm just paranoid like that. I want a calm life. I'm that a roommate agreement will bring that, at least to a certain extent. As I kept saying last year, I just need to get through till the end of April and then I'll be away from all this. I'm just not sure how well I'll make it.
Otherwise things are going well. I'm tired of being an undergraduate and I'm looking towards my future more and more. Nonetheless classes are going well and I'm actually enjoying some of them. I'll try to post again when something good happens. For the meantime be sure to check out my other far more active blog Anglo-Audiophile 2.0 for interesting musings on various things. The next two weeks will be filled with photos, so that's cheery. And we all need cheery things in our lives.


Why Can't I Just Blog Like A Normal Person?

(So the thing I was going to post last night has been moved to next week. Blame the snow.)

The second part of this week's assignment has proved difficult for me to finish. I've looked through all of Cog Dog Roo's list of fifty and I've tried out several of them trying to create a "Web 2.0"* story. I've tried and failed several times. My stories, as I tell them, are incredibly wordy and round about and have a tendency to go off on random tangents. I don't tell straight up stories. My stories need background information and footnotes to be complete. Trying to cram one of my stories into a comic or a slide show or even on a map (which I tried several times) just doesn't work very well. There are some straight forward stories in my repertoire but then I become impatient with the tools at my disposal and even my more straightforward stories tend to be lengthy.** Largely though, I'm just rather impatient and don't really see the point*** of trying to use fancy tools to tell a story when I can just write it and be done with it. So this whole assignment is troublesome to me but because I want to do well in this class and so I want to be able to finish this assignment.
What I would really like to do is create a straight up podcast. I host a weekly radio show and having blogged for nearly ten years**** so I suspect I would be good at podcasting. But I don't know how to with just my computer and Audacity. The tools provided by Cog Dog Roo don't really help either and again, I don't have a proper microphone (which I feel I need for some reason.) So that's what I would have liked to have done for this assignment. And I would have talked about something. I had a number of ideas floating around in my head including last year's spring break, why I can't have blank walls in my room, the origin of my love of the Kaiser Chiefs, etc., etc. I don't want to say I'm giving up on this assignment (largely because I'm sure Prof. Groom wouldn't approve) but I think it's one that I might have to come back to later. When I get a proper microphone or someone tells me why I don't need a proper microphone. Which ever comes first.

*If one of the leaders of Web 2.0 is blogging, why can't a Web 2.0 story just be a blog entry? Hmmm??
**I should clarify: When I say lengthy I mean more than a hundred words. I'm actually a very concise person which has gotten me into a lot of trouble when I write papers. This is why I believe that humans should evolve to be telepathic. It would make my life a lot easier.
***I do see the point. Refer to footnote 1 for clarification on why I "don't" see the point.
****I was going to write about this fact (and my have actually already mentioned it) at length but found a more streamlined way to get my point across. Often what I "write" in my head never sees the light of day because I've forgotten what I "wrote."


My Pride and Joy

(This is going to act as a preface for something that will be posted later tonight, but which I'm actually working on right now because I like entering in the html myself and the thing that will be posted tonight is html intensive. Enjoy.)

I didn't originally want to go to Mary Washington. It took a lot of convincing to get me here*, but once I was convinced (and admitted) I made it my mission to do the following things: Brainwash the campus into loving the Kaiser Chiefs as much as I did and study abroad in London. My first mission would be done by being a member of the newspaper, Giant Productions, and the radio station (WMWC, what what.) Two of those things didn't happen. The radio station did. Still didn't brainwash the campus into falling for the Kaiser Chiefs, but I did get the opportunity to introduce obscure** British artists to the handful of people who listen to WMWC and my show. For an hour or two a week I got to play music I love*** and talk about things I find interesting.****
I've done a lot in my time here at Mdub. I've written an 18 page paper, worked two jobs,***** helped to found the school's sci-fi club, and studied abroad in London. But when all is said and done, I'll be most proud of my contribution to the radio station. I never acted as an officer, but I was there week in and week out no matter who was in charge, just doing my thing and promoting the radio station to the best of my ability. My show and the radio station are my pride and joy****** from the past four years.

*Basically it took meeting someone who knew someone named Trillian. I'm actually really easy.
**Or not so obscure if you're cool like that (or I play Lily Allen/Mika/Keane etc.)
***Or not love, though that's gone by the wayside now that I primarily use my Zune for each show.
****Or mercilessly mock people who I really shouldn't be mocking because they might crush me. It's still fun though.
*****On campus, so nothing taxing or particularly exciting.
******I promise to never do that again. And how did I get to six footnotes? Can't promise that won't happen again.


My Web 2.0

I don't have the best memory. I don't remember when I first started using Google or Wikipedia. The only reason I remember why I started watching certain shows is because of my personal blog, where I can retrace the steps that got me to a certain point. When you're 15 you don't blog about using Wikipedia or Google. They just become a part of what you do on a day to day basis. I know that there was a time before Wikipedia and Google, but I don't remember them. They've always been there and they will always be there, at least in my memory.
For me, in my poor memory, the web has always been 2.0. Based on the article by Tim O'Reilly and cursory look at the Web 2.0 article on Wikipedia, this makes sense. My family had a dial-up service fairly early on and I remember logging on to AOL and then Netscape to access the internet. I don't really remember what I did on the internet at that age, though I suspect it probably had something to do with PBS (I've been a history nerd since I was at least 6, so you can see the appeal there.) But the web, as I know it and can remember it didn't really start until I signed up for my first real email account with Yahoo!* I was in my early teens at that point which would have been around 2001. So based on sources already stated, I really started interacting with the web right when web 2.0 was starting. 2001 was the year that Wikipedia started and Google had already been around for about five years. Based on my memory Web 2.0 is the only kind of web that has ever existed.
But what is Web 2.0? Both articles go some way to explaining what it is but to someone who's only really known Web 2.0 their explanations don't really help that much. So here's my definition. Web 2.0 is interactive and collaborative. Web 2.0 allows people to interface with each other and the web in a way that isn't confusing and can be done by someone who didn't major in comp. sci. To me Web 2.0 is blogging, Google, wikis, Twitter, and Facebook all wrapped together in one big happy family. And the reasoning behind my definition is that because I've only known Web 2.0, everything associated with what I know as the internet must be Web 2.0.
But** that doesn't really answer the question either. That's the problem with the web. It's constantly evolving so the web doesn't stand still for observation. We can try and categorize it, but what's the point? I say, let the web happen and when something new comes along to take over the web we can try and define it then. The internet, as easily accessible by ordinary people, has only been around for twenty or so years. Give it some time to grow.

*This account was setup in 2003, so while I can remember why I chose "cyd" to be part of it (I was a dancer and adored Cyd Charisse) I can't explain the rest. So please don't ask me to explain that particular address, I can't explain it.
**I hate it when I start two paragraphs the same way. So this is my apology for things like that. And any sentences with missing connective words. I type fast and have a tendency to only check for spelling. You'll get use to it.


Adventures in Public Transportation

As a resident of suburbia, I'm used to getting around by car. However for the past three summer that I have been volunteering/interning at WPFW I have to love the Metro. One of the things I miss the most about London is the Underground. And while I have a driver's license I have never owned a car. All this means is that while the majority of my fellow upperclassmen have control over how they get around Fredericksburg I am at the mercy of the FRED bus system for better and worse.
Generally speaking I have a love/hate relationship with public transport systems. I love them when they work and when they're on time and get me where I need to go in a timely fashion. I hate them one when they fail to do any one of the above. This is why my love for the Underground is so odd. Most of the time I was in London it worked like a charm but on the other hand most weekends I was stranded in the semi-suburb where I was staying (though it's more complicated than that.) I also understand that my admiration of the metro is odd because most residents of DC are more likely to moan about it than embrace it. But for me, with only a few exceptions, the Metro has worked.
On the other hand FRED and I seem to have a mutual disdain for each other. We're like ex's who broke up amicably - we put with each other but only to a point. While I have seen parts of Fredericksburg that I wouldn't have seen otherwise I do wish sometimes that I could have just driven from Central Park back to my apartment without having to wait an hour for a bus. While all of the public transport systems I have ridden on have been dysfunctional* in one way or another, Fredericksburg's system is perhaps the most dysfunctional of all of them. But who knows, maybe Boston** will prove even more dysfunctional.

*Really this all breaks down to my love of things what are dysfunctional. I don't know love them all the time, but I do identify with inanimate but dysfunctional systems. It's why I love WMWC so much - it's incredibly dysfunctional but it does the job well enough that no one knows just how dysfunctional it is. The same can be said for all of the above examples. I just have a thing for dysfunction.
**Boston aka the place I'll probably end up going to law school, unless Loyola LA surprises me and actually says yes instead of no or waitlist. But we shall see.


The Infinite Terror of Blogging Pt 3

(I promise I will start using a different title eventually. But trust me, using this title one more time will make sense. Honest.)

I am, by my very nature, a lurker.* I'm the consummate wallflower, a constant observer absorbing everything I can about the world around me. But while I comment in my own head about what I observe, I don't really feel the need to comment out loud. I read articles, I follow blogs, I read Twitter posts, but I don't say anything because a) website comment sections are truly scary and b) why? For much the same reason that Prof. Groom doesn't feel the need to get a cellphone, I don't feel the need to comment. Who am I to say anything about what anyone else says? So I lurk, learning and retaining mountains of largely useless information.**
Which is directly contradicted by the fact that I've been blogging for nearly 10 years. I started on deadjournal.com and slowly made my way to Blogger in February of 2005. I can search within that blog for nearly ever major landmark event in my life and can give an approximate date to when those things happen. I lay bare for anyone who wants to read it, my entire life in that blog. While I'm embarrassed by four or so years of what I wrote about, anyone*** can read about my avid fangirliness for a number of topics during that time simply by googling the right terms. But how does this effect anything outside my personal life? It doesn't. I blog to keep a record of my life so that when I get older I can look back and remember what I was like when I was fifteen, twenty, twenty-five. Alzheimer's runs in my family, so I would like to know that for better or worse there's a record of my doings for people to remember me by. Because as much as I lurk, I still want to be remembered.
So what of academia? In as much as I blog about anything, I blog about my classes. I don't blog about each of my classes to the extent that I suspect Prof. Groom will be wanting us to blog about this class, but I do talk about what I'm doing in school. Of all the things we'll be expected to do, I suspect for me that blogging about every step I take in this class will be the hardest thing to do.
I don't blog as much as I use to for many reasons. The biggest hope I have for this class is that I will start blogging more because I'll be inspired to blog more, instead of because I feel bad or whatever. And now, just to prove a point, here's a bunch of media stuff. Enjoy.
(one of my favourite videos of all time)
[caption id="attachment_28" align="alignnone" width="202" caption="Provided by thefilmstage.com"][/caption] (one my favourite movies that I saw last year)

*In classic internet parlance. Other synonyms include leech, which is probably accurate to a certain extent.
**Or useless at this point in time. Perhaps sometime in the future the useless things I know will be handy. I doubt it, but you never know.
***I've actually thought this through, at least in certain aspects and I just hope that no one looking to hire me figures out that the crazy blog they're looking is written my yours truly. Because if they ever did, there's a good chance no one would hire me.


Question Answered

This has next to nothing to do with this class or what I'm suppose to be doing in this blog, but I'm too excited to care. Besides, it's important to how I view the rest of this semester and the rest of my life really. So, yeah. Deal with it ;)

I've spent the past couple of months wondering if I would ever get into law school. Well my friends I have the answer: Yes. I have been accepted at New England Law School in Boston, so I do have it within me to get into law school. And as my mom said, even if I don't get in anywhere else, I'll have gotten into one school and that's all that's needed to go to law school. So to reiterate what my Facebook status says: I got into law school!!!! Wheeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!

I got into law school!!!! Whee...

I got into law school!!!! Wheeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!

A Year Ago (One Last Reminiscence)

It's been a year. Actually it's been a year and two days, but for some reason I couldn't bring myself to actually write about this before right now. So it's been a year and two days since I landed in London. A year and two days since I spent five hours freezing my ass off in Paddington station wondering what the hell I had gotten myself into. A year and two days since my life began to change quite dramatically.
A year ago and two days I didn't know just how dramatically my life would be changing. I thought London would reaffirm everything I already believed not change it. I thought I would come back from London craving to go back immediately and never leave again. I thought it would make becoming a DJ so much easier. I never thought it would change my career goals or my understanding of how much my family means to me. London changed everything, but not in the way I thought it would. Which is probably for the best.
I do miss London. I miss being able to go to the theatre easily, I miss the Comedy Store, I miss the Tube, and I miss living in a city. No, I don't miss the people I was forced to live with, but as the immediacy of those memories recede, the good things, the things I loved about London remain. But because of London I know myself better than I did a year ago, so I know that while I love London. Living there would be unbearably hard. I couldn't go it alone like I did last year, I would absolutely need to have someone with me.
So it's been a year and two days. It doesn't seem like that long ago, but time doesn't lie (mostly.) I do know this - it's been a hell of a year.


The Infinite Terror of Blogging Pt. 2

As hinted at in my last entry, I am very slow to adapt. It took a few months after getting into college to actually get a facebook account and it took my sister wittering on about the funny things being said on Twitter for a few months to actually convince me that Twitter wasn't completely worthless.* In fact the only way in which I'm truly progressive is in what I listen to and what I watch.** As I discovered when I was studying in London, I am actually a forty year old in a twenty-two year old's body (which can be very inconvenient, the forty year old can get quite grumpy about those youngins). Which leads me to my next point...
Last semester I had the opportunity to take a number of upper level history classes. I'm a music major who thought she wanted to be a history major, so getting to take three history classes was a revelation to me. In all three of those classes, at one point or another, each of the professors made the point that while the curriculum and ideas taught by academia can be quite progressive the actual professors are perhaps the least progressive people in the country, especially in their unwillingness to adapt to new things. Which leads me to my next point...
I have mixed feelings about "A Personal Cyberinfrastructure." One part of me, the part that probably convinced me that blogging was and continues to be a good idea and who got me to finally join Twitter, completely agrees with what Gardner Campbell has to say in both the lecture and the article. But the pragmatist, the part of me that knows that there are people in their mid to late 20s who don't know how to work a power point presentation, thinks that his ideas are nice and yes it would be great if we could implement them, but it would never really work. The majority of professors, heck even the majority of middle and high school teachers, would be unwilling to adapt to the new technology. The same professors who rail against Wikipedia as completely untrustworthy and incapable of providing accurate information would be same professors railing against Prof. Campbell's ideas as unnecessary and incompatible with higher education. They're wrong on both points, but they aren't going anywhere and so Prof. Campbell's ideas will, in all likelihood, go unfulfilled until my generation comes into power.*** That is, if people not like me become tenured professors at universities. Because I'm still not sure about this whole website thing. I like my templates.

*Hello! Welcome to my version of footnotes, wherein I make tangential comments that wouldn't make sense in the body of the entry. Tangential comment: This is a true story. I didn't get on the Twitter bandwagon until February of '09 but almost immediately started following Stephen Fry and rash of British comedians no one has heard of. It was a good day.
**Mwhahahahaha. The footnotes are not always mature.


The Infinite Terror of Blogging

At some point in my pre-teen/adolescent past I had a website.  It was actually a geocity site, but what I remember is that it was complicated.  Very complicated.  I don't remember how old I was or why I decided to register for a geocity site, but when I did I realized what I had gotten myself into and didn't like it.  It required learning a new language and at whatever age I was I didn't want to do that.  I also discovered blogging (wherein I learned very, very basic html) which was so much easier, so my geocity site when down the drain.  Ever since I've been incredibly intimidated by the idea of owning or maintaining a website.  And it turns out I was wrong.

For this class we were asked to buy a domain and rent server space to host said domain.  I, admittedly, freaked a bit.  Websites, according to my own philosophy, are a) expensive and b) complicated.  But I wanted to be in this class, I love the ideas behind this class, so I did it.  And man almighty was it easy.  Which of course means I messed it up a little bit (imnora.us, not imnore.us), but if you're reading this, you are seeing how easy it is to actually. The weird thing is, is that I'm still ambivalent about owning a website. This is possibly because I fear turning into an all out geek instead of just being a cultural geek (which is what I am now and will admit to freely.) However I guess I will just have to overcome that fear in this class.

Edit: If you ever have an issue with having to delete root files (wp-admin, etc) here's a really simple solution thanks to a fellow blogger: http://nickriebe.com/cant-delete-wordpress-folders-to-re-install/


Last Semester (Until Law School)

I'm going to start with a story about my day. The reason for this is because it will indicate the kind of mood I'm in which in turn will indicate how the rest of the entry will go. It's like a warning I suppose. So here's the story about my day.
It started with my alarm not going off. As I have mentioned numerous times (depending on where you're reading this) I am taking 20 credits this semester so the amount of time I have for anything (especially work) is limited to say the least.* So my plan for this morning was to wake up at 8:30am do morning stuff and be in the band room to set up by 10am. I woke up at 10:13. I have a class at 11am and then band immediately after, so waking up at 10:13am meant that band setup was out of the question. A real breakfast was also out of the question unfortunately. And lunch. So after music history (which ended at 3:15ish) I said hello to the library vending machine and settled in for a so-so afternoon. And discovered that the soda I had managed to get in between band and music history was leaking in my bag. Nothing important was damaged but my bag was wet and my soda was a lost cause. Thankfully I had a book and my Zune so the day that had gone all wrong ended up not so bad.
The first day of classes went much smoother. I woke up on time and I got to eat lunch. My swim class** is going to be way relaxed which is exactly what I was looking for. Oceanography is going to be a bit more intense than I was expecting, but Tibert seems pumped which will hopefully get me pumped. Intro to Theatre*** is going to be amazing and instead of writing about the Kinks I'll be writing about copyright, because that's just how I roll (and Fickett actually kind of approved that topic.) Monday/Wednesday/Fridays aren't going to be so bad I think, though I'm currently really biased against Tuesday/Thursdays.
Final topic I want to talk about (and kinda sorta have to): Digital Storytelling. I will admit after today's experiences I'm kind of ambivalent**** about this class. It seems a lot more intense (which is a word I need to stop using now) than I was expecting, but then again what we're going to be doing in this class is what I'm passionate about (from a law perspective in any event) and so part of me really doesn't want to leave this class. And of course there's the fact that anything I can get into is either going to be a) something I really don't want to take or b) equally time consuming. So the real question is whether to take the class pass/fail which has its own set of questions. In any event here's the big news: I have a domain name. It was really easy and really quick. Now I just need to get a webserver/host/thing and set up the blog aspect and I'll have myself a for real website. Which, as I sarcastically said to Mr. Groom tonight, is another thing I get to manage online. Yay.

*I require a certain amount of downtime/sleep time during my day, so while I could probably fit in more if I woke up at say 7am, I'm just not that kind of person, so why kid myself.
**I noticed that swimming met at the same time as weight training so I switched to the method of exercise I prefer. Sorry weight lifters.
***The only art history class I could fit in my schedule closed so I decided to not try and get into a closed class and take an equally interesting class that was open. I get to see "An Ideal Husband" so it all works out really.
****And my ex is in the class which makes me even more ambivalent, which if you've been reading this long enough, you will understand.