Calligraphy practise while watching the first of the new Sherlock episodes reveals how dreadfully out of practise I have become. Outrageous heat and Mercurian UV levels have made for a mostly unproductive day. Praying for rain and a break in the weather. Still picking away at After Effects tutorials, still unsatisfied with the results.
The new Sherlock has lost some of its shine, feels overly melodramatic and for shame, predictable. Hopefully the other episodes are better. Once I’ve watched Ep 2 I can watch the new Nerdwriter clip, so there is something to look forward to.
Maybe the week before Christmas wasn’t exactly the best time to try and adopt mindfulness habits and healthy eating. Better than on January first I guess as I actually achieved my goals for a number of days straight before heading into the Travel and Festivus nosedive. We are emerging out the other side now, re-accustoming ourselves to our Cobar home and the thousands of little jobs needing addressed around the place. One day back and it is a bit overwhelming.
Today we put up calendars, made lists, cleaned, sweated and swam. I have a little under three weeks until work starts as we start term 1 late in the Western district and it is going to be a very busy time.
For now I’ve read, watched and enjoyed a couple of good things over the last week, here are a few to share:
I have been slowly updating my security settings and now habitually use a VPN, as should you. I am still sometimes surprised by how exposed I am: What every browser knows about you.
Somehow I missed this hilarious re-dubbing of one of the Star Wars films which does not exist, using as script; the English subtitles on a pirated Chinese DVD. Contains the origin of the ‘Do Not Want’ meme.
If you follow UK media, which I do vaguely but with some extra exposure this year, Charlie ‘Black Mirror’ Brooker’s 2016 Wipe is an entertaining hour.
Finally I don’t want to come off all news hipster or anything but I have been following the Centrelink debts fiasco since mid November when the first stories about false debts from as far back as 2011 began surfacing on r/Australia. Mostly out of worry for myself and my friends, a number of whom have gone on and of student payments in that time frame. For those not following Centrelink has introduced a spiffy new algorithm wherein they compare your taxable income as reported by the ATO and look for as many ways to issue a debt based on that as possible, including but not limited to dividing the total by 26 fortnights even if you were only on a payment for a tiny fraction say one fortnight of the tax year.
Anyway I didn’t write about it then, and now, well now bloody John Birmingham has just written such a face melting burn of the whole malignant mess and the myopic machiavellians orchestrating it that it simply cannot be topped.
Days slipping by in Festivus. Lots of Lego, lots of painting, bubble making, a little carpentry and plenty of swimming in the river has occupied our days. I’ve been reading a preview copy of my father’s new novel and Steven Pinkers Style guide. We watched the sadly too long and quite disappointing Christmas special of Sense 8 and I’ve treated a cousin and myself to an on sale copy of ABZU. Which is a delightful aquatic adventure by the creators of one of my favourite games of all time:
Today we are off to the Folk Festival for the afternoon and evening, care of Christmas tickets and babysitting provided by my mother.
A small sampling of our output over the last few days:
This last playing with my new carbon ink Japanese brush pen. Lovely thing.
Having lost my voice teaching four days in a row I crashed hard Thursday night. Friday night N and I attended a staff Christmas party both still quite unwell. I found out that I will likely have a 4, 5, 6 composite for 2017. Which is exciting and daunting. Saturday was spent in recovery, not so much from the party at which we took it very easy but just from the general malaise of the foul lurgie that neither N or I have completely kicked yet.
I have put a few hours into a now very nearly complete T-shirt design. Which is not one of my main projects, has mostly just been a warm up activity but has been hovering about, nearly complete for weeks. I have been feeling very frustrated about how many unfinished projects I have on the go.
Finished building the new fence which will allow us to get our hens back when we return from our trip away for Christmas. Need to lay out an irrigation system over coming days so that watering is as easy as setting the timer every couple of days for my brother in law.
Collected the family sewing machine and now ready for the next stage of foam costume making. The next build video is edited but awaiting a a clip or two more to be shot for completion of those particular elements.
Art, Media & News
Still listening to ‘30 Days of Genius‘. Each talk has at multiple times had me conducting self analysis on goals, priorities and risks and relationships. Definitely a positive experience so far. In keeping with this I have been continuing the Headspace meditation program though I haven’t achieved daily commitment to that yet.
Some YTube side sound editing is still processing, so if there is no music yet don’t be alarmed. Video of gauntlet, shins and codpiece are likely a week or so away.
Started planning to rename my ytube channel to something other than just my real name and grabbed ‘Liatach’ because I really don’t have any other name that is as genuinely unique. Thinking I may even try my hand at a video intro animation. Nothing to cheesy mind 15 seconds maximum I think. Lens flares are cool right?
A family bbq and episode 8 of Westworld have left me at 11pm so I’m calling it a night here.
Arrived home today to find all three of my family members vomiting and miserable on the lounge room floor. Whatever vile virus has struck them down has skipped me so far, fingers crossed it stays that way.
Anyway, all my best intentions of a productive evening painting were dashed. We ate jelly and watched a ‘Secret Life of Pets‘ (silly and predictable but amusing) . I was inspired to go looking for a jelly mold but the only one I really took a shine to is a bit out of my price range…
Kindergarten is hard. I am honestly not sure I could take a whole year with a kindergarten class. They are such exhaustingly high maintenance. Give me upper primary any day. For now I have two days of freedom; creativity to unleash and garden work aplenty.
I was simply too shattered to post by the time the boys went down last night. watched some TV and hit the hay early.
‘Before the Flood‘ is well timed and pertinent. There are some really very good interviews and some excellent visual storytelling. Good but not great as it is a bit too americocentric for broader international appeal. In trying very hard to not be alarmist it waters down its impact some too.
Watched Ep2 of season 3 ‘Black Mirror‘. I would be happy to slam the season over a couple of nights but N finds them all so deeply uncomfortable that we have to pace them out. Also gave an episode of ‘Billions‘ ago as N had watched some on a plane and liked it.
Episode 1 of S3 Black Mirror is still repeating on me. All in all it was a better episode than the second. One of the best to date in fact, rare insofar as it left the viewer with some catharsis. A deeply challenging look at reviewing culture. Rating people has been tried and fortunately roundly rejected a number of times so far. But, well ebay, AirBnB, Uber and a thousand other apps all encourage the daily ranking of both participants in every transaction. Will it ever get as bad as depicted in Black Mirror?
Found this collection of fantastically weird disquieting and disturbing images. Some I have seen before, some that will haunt my subconscious for years to come.
We had to leave the service as F became well at truly out of sorts. I think N has above expressed pretty succinctly our feelings on the ANZAC tradition.
Big day tomorrow, first day at the local public, mostly doing mandatory trainings I believe. Two client afternoon as well.
Finished listening to ‘What If‘ By Randall Munroe which was great fun but unfortunately read by Will Wheaton. As an actor and celebrity sometimes I really like him, as an audio book narrator he drives me bananas, not the first book I’ve listened to read by him, hopefully the last. Started listening to ‘Religion for Atheists‘ By De Botton. I read and enjoyed about half of this as a library hire early last year, returned it unfished and overdue and am already glad to have picked it up again.
I disassembled and cleaned one of the circular saws I bought for $2.50 each at auction. Began preparing pieces of ply and timber with which to fashion myself a temporary saw table. In order to use the Skilsaw for this purpose I had to remove its blade guard, a benefit of having done this is that it will likely allow the 7 1/4″ saw to take a slightly larger blade. At some point I plan to invest in a new saw and a Triton or similar saw table.
Speaking of Triton tools, I’m pretty happy to have scored an older model of this for $5
Last night I completed a terrain card sketch and retired early, as for tonight well, there is this thing I want to watch…