Sunday, December 28, 2008

The shape of things to come

I wonder what we could all achieve if we just focused on it.

In a strange confluence of events, being slightly drunk and having just watched Dazed and Confused for the first time, I'm finding myself in an incredibly reflective mood. I think to the times of achievement in my life, getting into GHP, getting in shape, making certain films, and at some of those times, I was incredibly focused. More focused than ever, thinking back. Not that robot obsessed kind, but just really involved in whatever was at hand.

Today, I sometimes find myself so scattered that I tend to fall back into vices to compensate, e.g. eating too much, not reading enough, drinking too much, not running. What if I really tried? Why do our minds, or maybe it's just some people, stop focusing on what we want? I got Katie the latest from Malcolm Gladwell, Outliers. In yet another book where he breaks the macro level down to a sort of broadened mechanism, he talks about success and those who achieve and those who don't. I can't wait to read it. The topic fascinates me right now. We have the ability to possess incredible focus, and yet we don't always...why?

What occupies my mind these days? Wanting to be wont. I need to do. Why not? I've not been exhausted from doing a lot of nothing, so I should do more. Do until I'm well into my own mind. I'm not sharp, I've been doing badly at crosswords lately.

My mind is screaming at me to write. Katie's indulged that by getting me some notepads to carry in my back pocket. If only I had a pen. But there are always pens. No more excuses, eh? No more fast food, boozin', brushing aside. I've been reading Money by Martin Amis (courtesy of ol' Stephan two years ago at Secret Santa), and the character of John Self is excess incarnate. And it gets in your blood. You have to be careful. I think I've definitely gained weight since I've started reading that book. But it's gotten to the point where he acknowledges that he should be dead, and I have to reassess what's in my life.

I'm 24 now. Young, aging, full of aspiration, nothing concrete yet. Gotta give all of this a shot, may as well be disciplined. I think the best compliment I've gotten lately was that a coworker mistakenly thought I was still in school, because I was so, how did she put it? I can't remember. It was either "studious", "disciplined", or "driven", but I think it was either none or any of those, and I want to keep up those appearances.

I think by Wednesday I will have my new annual tradition of lists. I can't wait.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Blogs don't age

So this is foreign, writing on here again. I've finally posted all of those blog posts I did over at CHUD. Getting married, it's overwhelming, and that being overwhelmed seems to seep into everything and carry on for a while. We're still recovering from the whole thing, trying to slow down. I think it's getting better.

About those CHUD posts. They are definitely geared towards that audience, so there's probably a bit more cursing and direct references to the site, which isn't that good. I've never understood it's organization and layout, though some of the writers are pretty good. And I thought the whole gig was sweet at first, but then I quickly realized that I was one of many, many goateed film geeks with nothing to do but blog all day. They all have really bad pictures, I just don't get it. These guys don't understand what makes a good picture, and they can't write either. Anyway, my point was that my style's a little bit different in those posts, which I've retro dated so they're fitting with the chronology of the year. I forgot about a lot of those movies I saw. I guess that's why blogs are good.

I think I've also returned here to collect thoughts. Time moves quickly, and thoughts and ideas and zeitgeists get lost in that rigmarole. I look back fondly at the recap of last year I did. So I wanted to make sure I get situated on here to do that again. The number of movies I have to see is growing as the awards season approaches. If I hurry, I'll see everything that's currently in theaters worth seeing.

Christmas is fast approaching, and since it's the Hawkins-Gaars' first Christmas, we're trying to generate some traditions. We took a walk to view the sparse lights and decorations in Cabbagetown, but it was lovely nonetheless. I'm going to figure out how to make cookies from scratch this week. We have Secret Santa coming up, which is quite a lovely tradition of its own. We need more holiday cocktails around the house.

The strange thing about the passage of time is that you forget what doesn't change. The chalkboard in our kitchen, for example. It had the same message on it for a long time, and I just erased it and now it's great again. New ideas, things to do, new colors and messages. For a while, it just started to blend into the wall. And when I clean up, I often don't clean what needs it the most, whatever's been so unaffected for so long that it doesn't even register. Like my drawer in my nightstand. I just emptied it the other day, uncloseably full of books. And there were receipts in there from last Christmas. We have to make sure we affect what's important or we'll forget it's there. Our bodies are part of that too. We just get into eating habits and get used to our bodies without thinking of changing them. Our minds, too. We have to explore new avenues or we'll forget to. Constant care and attention. That's the only way to make time slow down.

This blog is a good example of that. I'm glad to jumpstart it again. I'm excited about talking the new music I've been catching up on lately. And the films, once I actually see them. We just saw Milk. It was good, not great though. And we FINALLY saw the Lives of Others, which Santa brought last year. I still have movies from three, four Christmases ago to watch. Those DVD shelves need some attention.