Comedy and Christmas have really been entertaining together for a long time
Do you know about Notch? He’s this guy, and he created something amazing.
(I have to really to hand it to 2 Player Productions, they truly are masters of their craft. Everything I have seen that they had a hand in from the first season of Penny Arcade: The Series to this Minecraft documentary. They truly know how to tell a story with a documentary.)
About two or three years ago my great friend Aksen bought Minecraft for me on the last day you could buy it in beta form and get all subsequent updates including the full version of the game. I didn’t understand the game at first, I played it for about fifteen minutes then stopped and then didn’t touch it. It was also around this same time that I was at a bit of a self diagnosis of sorts. I was pretty sure who I was but didn’t really feel that I fit into a lot of my friend circles at the time. I loved my job and still do but everything else seemed in limbo. I knew what I liked, that I was a big geek/nerd and I totally accepted that, but felt kind of alone in my endeavors and alone in general. Now don’t get me wrong, I had friends and would occasionally hang out with them and have a good time and could proudly call on them if I ever needed a favor, but to me, my life seemed like an endless cycle of the same week over and over and over and that, was depressing. (I suppose I should also mention that this took place not too long after having a albeit quiet but definitive drama filled separation with some friends as well, just to add fuel to that fire.)
I don’t know if you’ve played Minecraft but when you start you typically all by yourself in what looks like a completely undisturbed world…
In the version I started with it didn’t even tell you what to do or how to do anything, but you start to hit blocks and things start to happen. You collect resources, build tools, and eventually you really get the hang of things and start building magnificent structures tunnels and pretty much anything you can think of. You mine and you craft and as simple as that sounds it’s surprisingly liberating and if you start to go online and looking up what other people have built you can be wholly inspired to do even larger projects in the game.
My first PAX was PAX Prime 2012. I had fallen in love with Penny-Arcade TVs first season and really related to a lot of what they were saying (no seriously those episodes effect me in a way I can’t describe but it’s something deep down). In it they had a few episodes about PAX or the Penny Arcade Expo. I had no idea that this convention existed. Of course I had known about Comic Con (and it’s ridiculous crowds) and several other tiny conventions in comparison but this was the first I had heard about a convention that seemed aimed at the consumer, the fans, and for everyone to have a good time.
2012. Where do I begin?
So my best friend told me I should just write more, and perhaps be a little less concerned with the fact that I believe the internet is very much a visual medium even though I wish it weren’t and feel like every post needs to have at least some form of picture or photo. (That run on sentence was for you.) But maybe she’s is also right.
Just a quick note to anyone that might read this consistently there will probably be some pretty big changes to the site fairly soon. What those are yet I’m not exactly sure as I’m still trying to figure out what exactly I want the site o be, but hey at least something is happening to it again right?
There will be times when I think of a phrase in my head that seems to suit a situation so perfectly I can’t help but repeat in my head until I break it down so succinctly that although still a clever phrase it may not encompass the feeling as thoroughly as it did before.
I used to have this friend back in high school (which I actually realized the other day I reference high school a lot) that would just state his opinion about anything. He seemingly cared very little about whether or not you heard it. It was pretty typically heavily opinionated and sometimes not entirely based on legitimate facts, but that didn’t seem to matter terribly. I think our group tended to appreciate the notions but often disregarded them and even occasionally grew angry over them. Regardless it helped us define him, and that’s maybe why we grew to love him.
I fear the thought of even counting how many drafts of posts I have, so many of which start with words similar to I’m never sure how personal I want to make this blog. The fact is I sometimes lose site I’ve my ultimate goal in life and in turn the steps needed to get there, one of which seems necessary to at least act like myself in all forms of communication. To open up, to share the things I find in my own grand exploration. I then always think about what my fears are of doing so.
I always debate with myself of how personal I want to make posts on here. Public, out in the world for anyone to see words that are more about me than just my thoughts on a subject. I guess to some extent there is a bit of solace in the fact that I can count how many regular visitors I have on both hands, and the majority of those I have met or know with great fortitude in real life so I suppose with that in mind pretty much anything I could say you’re all probably already aware of.
I guess I’m not even sure myself whether or not the credit I give Penny-Arcade for the effect they have had on my life is founded, but if it is not because of them, they were certainly a catalyst. A little over two years ago I was satiated in the feeling that I was set in my life. I had my career, a place to live, a good handful of friends, and for the most part I was happy enough with the interests and fandoms I kept to myself. It was life as I knew it and I accepted it. I had heard of the Penny-Arcade web comic in the past: in passing in high school when friends would talk about it; an old crush of mine hailed one of the main characters as her future husband; and so on. It really wasn’t for me I felt though. I couldn’t connect with all of the humor and it seemed just a little too hit and miss for me to keep up on. I think it was when they began airing Penny-Arcade TV that things really shifted. A little time before that I guess I had met one of my best friends and favorite people Aks3n, and just so happened to work with him pretty much everyday. It was awesome, we had tons of the same interests, laughed at the same jokes, and could riff off of each other’s ideas for hours on end. Somehow one day we got to talking about Penny-Arcade and I decided to give it a look and noticed there had been a few episodes of Penny-Arcade TV created and posted. I started watching one of the ‘4th panel’ episodes and discovered people that reminded me of both myself and my favorite people, so I quickly jumped back and started from episode 1 going through each and every video, sometimes more than once.
I had plans, great big plans. In my head I had entirely thought out a schedule of activities.
People are awesome.
Take that as perhaps a
I pretty much always am trying to remind myself to write down any creative ideas I have, wether or not they are actually good. Somehow the duty seems to continue to escape me. The one thing I have realized is working towards something consistently even if just in tiny increments seems to work the best for getting anything actually done.
“Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.”
Not long ago I was feeling my free time was being dictated by TV schedules and the limited amount of time I had to do anything. Or at least that’s how I felt. During the weekdays my evenings seemed like endless cycles of nothing because of it though. I suppose a small bit of it came with the touch of social anxiety. I’ve always envied guerilla film makers shooting entire scenes all around LA just showing up and not giving concern too much to the looks and jibes that may occur while there ‘in the middle of it.’ Then of course there is the bit of being a perfectionist of sorts in that truly if I don’t feel like I can do a project right the first time, I will not do it at all.
“Stop pretending art is hard.”
I literally just started truly working in Photoshop about 6 months ago. I always felt a little daunted and just the number of tools in the program was staggering to me. But as I really started to dig in I realized (thanks largely to tutorials on the internet) that nearly everything in Photoshop is a ‘trick.’ It is all a set of instructions that if you follow and learn to understand how they manipulate your image you can ultimately start developing your own methods of working and creating. I really like that, and have kind of started applying similar methods in my life, to me the trick usually ends up being attempting it in the first place.
“Begin at the beginning,” the King said, very gravely, “and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
…Which seems like a bad idea considering how much I pay for you. A ha! But you see that is exactly how I hate to look at things. As much as the cost of things should probably be a factor in such items, I’d rather make the decision based on how it effects my quality of life… Or something…
But yeah, much like my growing piles of unplayed video games and unread comic books this blog hasn’t been much beyond a repository for really random things. Can’t say I will change that, but I’m thinking about it now and I hope to. So I guess I might as well talk about my weekend, if you want to read about it that is.