I'm sitting here downing a delicious bottle of cider (Fox Barrel Blackberry Pear = new favorite EVER) after a very uneventful day off. We were going to grill up some burgers with our neighbors tonight, but one of them fell sick, so instead I made some Spaghetti alla Carbonara for Luke and I which OMG SO HEAVY. (But so good.) (BUT SO HEAVY.)
Brilliantly enough, my only other event for the day – a dental appointment for a filling – got cancelled because my dentist is out of town. So I decided to devote the entire day to writing. Which was difficult. This one scene has been plaguing me for WEEKS, and I'm still not done hashing it out.
Seriously, I always think I know where I'm going with this story, but then while I'm writing five more branches will appear that I didn't even consider, and I'm back to flailing around in despair. BUT. I always feel like crap when I set it aside, so I have to see it through. IT HAUNTS MEEE.
Fandom-wise, there's not much news in my world. Luke and I watched the second season of Downton Abbey (after rewatching S1 for a refresher – first saw it this time last year and forgot too many details). We thoroughly loved S2, even if several events stretched my suspension of disbelief a lot and seemed rather... ahem... convenient. The acting was magnificent enough to make up for any narrative shortcomings. And the costume and production design is just SWOONWORTHY, especially on Blu-ray. It's a beautiful show.
Anyway! There's so much else I'm looking forward to this year in the film, TV, book, and gaming worlds. I've been meaning to make a full post out of my anticipatory glee, because it is rather immense. Hopefully I'll get around to it before the year's halfway over. Heh.
Otherwise, work is going great (got a second raise!), our winter has been snowtacular, and in a couple of weeks I'm going skiing for the first time in my life. So if you don't hear from me ever again after that, nice knowing you! Because yeah. I am a very clumsy person. But I'm determined to try this thing, just to say I did. ;P
I suppose I should update, now that it's 2012 and all. The new year has kicked off rather well. I'm writing every day, working on my hilariously out-of-shape body, eating decently, reading lots, and basically doing all those things I usually kick ass at in early January and then slack off with later in the year.
BUT I AM DETERMINED THIS TIME. HEAR ME, 2012?
One of the shared goals Luke and I have is to dedicate at least an hour every day to creative pursuits. He's taking up drawing and art again, I'm taking up... that manuscript I've been staring at for a century now. First draft is due at the end of the year OR. ELSE. This has gotta happen; I need to move on with my writing life!
I've also decided to dedicate the year to reading all the classics I own and have been putting off: stuff like Gone With the Wind, Ben-Hur, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Dracula, The Picture of Dorian Gray, etc ad nauseum. Of course, plenty of sci-fi, YA and nonfic will be interspersed throughout, because that's just how I roll. But I'm excited to catch up on my existing bookshelf. Way too many tomes sitting there that I haven't ever touched.
In other news! I might as well confess (since I don't believe I have, yet – at least not here) that I have fallen for the devious, deadly mind-trap that is The Vampire Diaries. I KNOW, OKAY. I know. But once I slogged through the first half of S1, my viewing experience stopped being dominated by questions like "um, why are you watching this?" / "what is wrong with you, Ali?" to things like "MY EMOTIONS AND FEELINGS WHAT ARE YOU DOING TO ME" and "WOW, THAT WAS PRETTY BADASS."
Most hilarious part? Luke has fallen for the show just as hard. The secret truth is that he's always loved the vamp/wolf genre when it's a bit more brutal (he's an Underworld guy) and I decided to exploit this. He kept frowning "but it's a teenybopper show" so I told him "dude, a thousand-year-old vampire decapitates someone onscreen and they don't cut away!" Eventually, he was convinced to sit down, suffer through the beginning, and see what he thought of the rest. He is now fully obsessed and caught up. We're both wondering when Elijah is gonna wake up and WHAT IS IN THE FOURTH COFFIN and things of that nature.
Elijah, Stefan, Alaric, and Bonnie are my faves. Damon is Luke's. (He's so predictable.) However, unpopular fandom opinion: I hate Klaus with every fiber of my being and hope he dies ASAP. I won't miss him when he's gone.
Guess that's it for now! I'm drinking some cider and enjoying the snowfall outside, and I suppose I should get back to the new BBC Great Expectations – starring Gillian Anderson in her CREEPIEST role yet. I love this woman so much.
So. A year ago today we carted everything we own up three flights of stairs and moved into our very cozy one-bedroom apartment here in metro Denver. Life at 5,280 feet has been good to us so far. It has involved lots of beer, thick jackets, new friends, allergies, thunderstorms, snowstorms, writing (I think my all-time page count at work is now 800+), biking, hiking, asthma, mountain sunrises, baseball games, hockey games, and overspending on cocktails in Larimer Square. Huzzah!
Luke and I attended our first NFL game a couple of weeks back: Broncos vs. Jets! ( My boss gave me two free tickets as a "thank you" for rocking it at work...Collapse )
Anyway, it was a great evening.
Another great evening: ( we saw VNV Nation on Saturday night.Collapse )
At the moment, I am listening to some Johnny Cash Christmas music and trying to marathon my way through ten more blogs for work. Brain injury is the topic o' the day today. Much better than breast augmentation. Oh, my job. I have learned so many pointless things from it.
Our Thanksgiving was most excellent – we joined up with our significant couple and made the most epic meal I have ever seen laid out for a mere four people. We also enjoyed the World's Largest Jello Shot, although it ended up looking more like an Amoeba Shot in the end. DELICIOUS. I missed family, but I'll be seeing them in less than a month because Christmas is approaching at LIGHTNING SPEED. SLOW DOWN 2011, why're you in such a hurry to die? ;P
Anyway, it'll be my first time back in California in over a year. Now that we're all settled in our jobs and life out here, I hope to do a lot more hopping on planes and visiting people next year. (Thank you, Flex Friday, for making that so much easier on me.)
So, I beat Uncharted 3
at some ungodly hour on Friday night. Work and various obligations kept getting in my way all week, but when I finally got the chance to sit down to the game without a time limit hindering me, it was over far too quickly. Been meaning to hash out something more substantial than my brief Twitter reactions, so here we go. ( Spoilers ahoy!Collapse )
Plenty about Uncharted is unrealistic, over-the-top, and scripted for the sake of adrenaline (WHICH IS THE POINT :D ♥), but those strong character arcs and interactions make it stand so far out from the crowd. I would love to see more game developers follow suit in thinking critically about their characters and giving them the level of emotional realism that Nate, Elena, Sully, Chloe, et al have.
Not saying other game writers and developers don't do this. Obviously, there are more examples we can cite (hello, John Marston! hello, Monkey and Trip!). I'd just like to see it become more of a trend, rather than the exception to the rule.
In conclusion: will play again (and again, and again). Meanwhile? SEE YA ON MULTIPLAYER.
I'm so thrilled it's October. It's still sunny but getting progressively chiller; every once in awhile, we'll get this half-rain-half-slushy-snow sprinkling the ground. The trees are bright yellow and red everywhere, the fireplace is back in use, fall decorations are up, and my morning coffee has taken on that extra edge of perfection. I just love it SO MUCH.
We had three separate visits from relatives in September: Luke's mom, dad, and older sister came at the beginning of the month, then my brother Chris came out mid-month, then Luke's other sister came with her husband and 6-month-old daughter (my first niece!). We've become pros at giving guests the grand Denver-Boulder-Golden tour. It's been fun, fulfilling, and humbling (if a bit exhausting) to have so much family out at once. Seriously, we never expected people would actually want to visit us en masse! Our Xbox has collected a slew of new avatars. This is what happens when you visit the Miller abode: we make you an Xbox profile and challenge you to Kinect bowling throughout your stay. Be forewarned.
I also found time last month to hop on a plane and visit krisology
in Salt Lake City, which was glorious fun (but much too short). I love being such a brief plane ride away from her now. This needs to happen way more often.
But holy frijole. I won't lie: getting a chance to kick back and isolate myself from the world again has been a relief. As much as I love my peoples, I think I'm still an incurable hermit at heart.
Case in point: I finally got access to the early Uncharted 3
multiplayer (thank you Subway), so that's what I've been doing for the past few nights while I
patiently await the full game's release in THREE SHORT WEEKS. If you have a PS3, I encourage you to buy one of those obnoxiously large soda cups at Subway, download the game, and join me. Come, let us throw treasure idols and grenades at willing victims. It is a strangely satisfying sport.
Oh yeah, I should probably mention that I haunt Tumblr a lot these days, just for the simplicity of it (and the pretty fannish stuff everywhere). Let me know if you have a presence there, too. (To clarify: I use my main equustel
account as a more srs bsns reflective/spiritual blog, while noiseforyoureyes
is for fun things: fandom and anything else that strikes my fancy.)
I think this is the longest I've ever gone without updating my journal. Wow.
No, I haven't abandoned LJ. I still keep track of my f-list and comment, as most of you have noticed. I'm just a scattered person, lately - and not necessarily in a bad way. I feel less confined out here. It's led me to spend more time cultivating the parts of me that kind of fell by the wayside in California. I almost forgot how valuable the combination of dead silence and fresh air can be... going for a walk around one of the city lakes with no traffic noise, no interference, just a pen and a paper journal in hand. After I've hashed everything out like that, I have less inclination to come back to my computer and express myself here.
But I still think it's important. I started this journal in 2002; it contains nearly 10 years of crazy life change and a chronicle of my obsessions, the things that light me up and make me tick. I'm actually a bit sad that places like Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest and the like are taking over the internet... I love and use them all, but nothing should replace a nice, long, rambling blog entry. So LJ, you're still my friend. I'm sorry I've neglected you! Let's hug and make up.( Life stuff and job stuff.Collapse )
Anyway. Some things haven't changed and never will change: I am still a fixated fangirl in all regards. ( In which I briefly discuss Deus Ex: Human Revolution and Divergent.Collapse )
I should probably get back to work. But hey, it felt good to ramble again!
June was just nuts. July is finally slowing down. I haven't had much time to dig into fandom on any significant level, which is okay. My interests have been going in 50 directions at once these days. Digging my heels into any single one of them is just not feasible at the moment.
I've managed to remain somewhat diligent with non-work writing, though it's been a battle. After coming home from the office, where I write thousands of words every day, it is a struggle just trying to write a few hundred more. Nonetheless, "the manuscript" is looking more like a picture than a puzzle these days, which is a relief. I still have a long way to go before I'll be anywhere close to finishing a first draft, but it's stimulating and gratifying and challenging for the time being. That's what matters, right?
Colorado summers might be this place's best kept secret. Nobody prepared me for this. Afternoon thunderstorms almost EVERY SINGLE DAY. Lightning shows and the whole nine yards... all while it's 80-90 degrees outside. It is glorious. It's never even truly overcast; the sun and blue sky are visible for most of the day, then the stormclouds pass through all magnificently. I've been going swimming in the downpour and memorizing the cloudscapes and basically basking in the clean air. I do sorely miss family and friends back home, but my parents came out a few weekends back and we had SUCH a good time that it's band-aided that wound for now. While we were driving up to Boulder, my dad looked around at the mountains and said, "So what's the downside of living out here?" And I was fairly stumped. Long commutes on snowy days? Whatever. Better than long commutes in the smog EVERY day.
We still have so much to explore; I think that's the best part. When I asked people at work where we should go for our anniversary trip, I was virtually bombarded with recommendations - then people kept changing their minds and bringing up other places later, routes to take, festivals and breweries to check out. Sheesh. Next weekend, right after seeing Deathly Hallows Part 2 (SO EXCITED, SO SAD) we're headed to Breckenridge for an extended weekend. It'll be our first time checking out one of the big Rocky Mountain resort towns, which are supposed to be a lot more lazy in summer without the skiers. I'll be doing as much biking/hiking as my asthmatic body can handle, and I can't wait.
Anyway. That's life at the moment. This weekend I look forward to finishing up The Death of Adam (Marilynne Robinson again), leveling up in the Uncharted 3 multiplayer beta (which will be pointless when the real game comes out), not being in the office, and SLEEPING. YAY.
So I'm about a hundred years late to this party, but I still want to talk about the mind-melting awesomeness of PORTAL
, and how you should play both of these games RIGHT NOW if you like any of the following:
→ snarky homicidal robots
→ singing homicidal robots
→ cute homicidal robots
→ flying through the air with the power of physics
→ puzzles that make you feel like a genius
→ sentient cubes that love you
I swear, these games were MADE FOR ME. And yes, that says a lot about me. But really. Even if you're not the "gaming type" I strongly encourage you to download
one or both of them (they can be played on a Mac or PC) if you dig puzzles and strategy and using your brain (and laughing), because they are insufferably brilliant. And no, I'm not done with Portal 2
yet but that's only because I don't want it to be over. :[ GLaDOS is my BFF.
But I suppose I should kick things into gear a bit since Tuesday is L.A. Noire
day, and that's pretty much going to take over my life. Although Rockstar has a tough job ahead of themselves getting me to like this Phelps dude as much as John Marston. (Pardon me while I clutch at my heart a bit and remember first meeting John
at this time last year.)
Hey, really though. How is it mid-May already? Have I really been living in this state for six whole months? Half a year? What?
It's been a pretty quiet six months for us. We've been slowly getting to know the new people and places around us, and the more we see the more we get the gut feeling that this is going to be a long-term thing. As in, buy a house in a few years. Settle. A big deal for Luke, who's been moving his whole life. A big deal for me, who's never been so far away from "home". But the idea of making
a home here sits very well with the both of us. It feels natural. I mean, I found a Hobbit Lane five minutes away from us. HOBBIT LANE, guys. It's only a matter of time before I'm living there.
Really excited for summer, as we're going to have an influx of visitors - people we miss A LOT - and do our share of vacationing. Friends are roadtripping out, family is flying in, we're going up into the mountains for my birthday and our anniversary, and I'm going to finally get some long-term asthma meds so I don't keel over trying to enjoy myself out here. (Seriously dude, asthma + altitude don't mix, wow.)
Just for fun, here's a pic
from our Saturday morning outing last weekend. He hunted fish, I read books. (Speaking of which, are any of you on Goodreads? Because I haunt that place more than most social networks these days.) Oh and don't worry, the fish always go back in the water. ;]
Okay, we all know how much I love the Nolan Batfilms. I am beyond stoked for The Dark Knight Rises
and beyond grateful for the ways in which Batman's film incarnation has been redeemed over the past few years.
But, there is a special place in my heart for DCAU Batman. He was my first Bats, and will always be my favorite. My brother and both fell in love with him as kids by way of the Saturday morning Batman/Superman Adventures (OMG do you remember how AWESOME THE INTRO WAS
God bless YouTube, I was obsessed with that music!).
Anyway. DCAU Bats has been through many incarnations himself, but I think what makes him kinda special is the fact that one way or another, the same people have been working on him for decades. Yes, they've brought in new voice casts lately, yes the animation style has evolved through the years, and yes, lots of different people have been involved with the various animated productions. But somehow Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, Alan Burnett, and the rest of the crew have been supervising, producing, writing, etc. And their Batman is just such a pure, condensed representation of the legend. ( More rambling, and the first stills from "Batman: Year One" that prompted all of this.Collapse )
Okay, I'm done. Just needed to gush a bit. This thing comes out sometime in the fall and I am all over it, basically.
(The Miller/Mazzucchelli dream team also happen to be responsible for Daredevil: Born Again
, aka My All-Time Favorite Superhero Arc. If only Marvel had an animation team half as talented and dedicated as DC's to bring that to life... gah!)