My Thoughts Are Pollution

Coming-of-age ramblings that don't mean much in the long run

Month: February, 2015

The Great Whatever

In John Green’s Looking for Alaska, the main character makes the decision to change schools out of the pursuit of a “Great Perhaps”, inspired by the last words of poet Francois Rabelais. I like to think that at one point in my life, I was searching for that too.

Nowadays, it feels much more like a search for a “Great Whatever”. I just want to find something. It doesn’t matter what it is, it just has to matter.

There are times when I think that this Great Whatever is a girl. That thought usually lasts until about an hour after the girl in particular isn’t around me anymore, and the effect she has on me has worn off. Because it does wear off now.

Quick aside: that fucking sucks. When I was younger, having feelings for someone meant having feelings for them all of the time. I don’t know if that means that I don’t actually feel anything towards this person, or if I’m just emotionally crippled at the moment, or if losing the constant companionship of heartache is just a part of growing up. It sucks no matter what. Anyways.

Those times when she is my Great Whatever don’t feel real as soon as she’s gone. That’s how I know that’s not it. That’s definitely not it.

There are other times when I think that living this life of nothing is my Great Whatever. That somehow, I’ve already found it, and all it is is working a dead-end (but not terrible) job and spending every other waking moment playing video games until I’m incapable of regular human interaction without a screen acting as a barrier between me and real, physical human contact. But I know that’s not it. I just tell myself that it is so that I can finally have an excuse to give up.

The idealist in me thinks that my Great Whatever is hanging out on a stage, waiting for me to perform some song before filling me with a sense of accomplishment and purpose that I’ve needed for so long. And said idealist believes that because it remembers what it was like being on stage. It’s like being on another planet. There’s not a single experience on Earth that even remotely resembles performing music on a stage. It’s just… It’s such a singular experience. God, I hope that word actually describes the thing I’m attempting to describe.

I’ve played on a stage three times in my life. The first was for a talent show, and I got my first unbearable little taste of it. You see, I’m a scared little shit, especially about anything involving other people. Performing for people is one of my greatest fears. The thing is, once you step out on stage, there’s no going back. It’s like a roller coaster. Once it starts, no ones going to fucking stop it just because you’re scared. You just have to be scared. And I was. I was so goddamn scared. And I started playing, and the fear turned into adrenaline which turned into confidence which quickly shattered and became more fear, but I fucking played, man. And I didn’t stop until the song was over.

And that’s where I think my Great Whatever is. Hopefully I’ll be there again someday.

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Still Here

Hey everyone. I’m still here, there’s just been a lot of stuff going on and I’ve been kind of… computer-averse lately.

My younger brother left. He’ll be gone for a while. He went to start a two-year long mission for the church that my family belongs to.

I feel lots of things about it, most of them selfish, if I’m honest. I’m losing the only person I know around here who shares my interests. I’m going to be fucking lonely for a while. I don’t have any friends.

I mean, he’s doing something that he wants to do. It’ll make him happy. And you know, I left for a while too. I don’t really have much of a right to feel unhappy about it.

So I’m not, I guess. I’m pretending it’s not happening. I’m putting aside all of this unhappiness and saving it for later. I don’t know how well it’s going to work out, but I know that at this very moment, I can’t deal with it. So, yeah. Later. Not now.

But I’m totally still here, if you were wondering.

The Same

People, they change

but they don’t change that much

You’re the same as you ever were

and I’m the same as I ever was

So don’t say we can’t ever touch

that somehow, suddenly I’m not enough

I’m still the same as I always was

People, they don’t change that much.

Now I want to leave this goddamn hotel

You’re sleeping with your friends

god, I want to get out

of this blackness all over ’cause I drank too much

and you don’t understand why

So when I shut my eyes

will you learn to despise

all the habits I’ve made

since the day that we stayed

together in that broke-down car

and I want to be praised

but you’re empty and you stayed

exactly the way that you are

whatever you are

I’m a Fucking Dork

So… I spend a lot of time on this blog writing poetry, posting videos of me playing guitar and bitching about stuff, and while all of that does capture who I am on some level, I realize that I’ve completely failed to present a pretty important facet of my personality to all of you. I am a nerd. And no, I’m not just a surface nerd who watches Doctor Who and owns a gaming PC and calls it a day. (Tangent: There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. You be you. You’re just not in that deep, and that’s fine. The concept of “nerd cred” is fucking stupid. Like what you like. Regardless of that entire statement, though, I’m going to lay my nerd cred out on the table.)

I have been playing video games since I was three years old.

My favorite video game of all time has been the same game since before I knew how to read.

There isn’t a main-series Pokemon game that I haven’t played.

I own a Wii U.

I also own a 3DS and play that shit in public.

I don’t really watch anime, but I do read visual novels, which is way, way deeper in the Japanophile/otaku hole than watching anime is.

There are multiple albums worth of video game and video game inspired music on my music-playing-device.

I regularly listen to five weekly video game podcasts, two of which always range from two to three hours long.

I play Magic: The Gathering.

Not only do I play Magic: The Gathering, but I also watch competitive events. I’m halfway through watching the semifinals in the most recent Pro Tour right now.

I listen to four weekly Magic: The Gathering podcasts. Their lengths vary wildly.

I have been to a major Magic: The Gathering event. I didn’t participate in the main event, but my brother and I played the hell out of some side events.

I aspire to play Magic: the Gathering on a competitive level someday, though I’m nowhere near good enough. Competitive decks are also incredibly expensive, ranging from 300$-700$ in some formats, and thousands of dollars in other. (Tangent: The term “format” is used to define which cards are allowed to be played in a deck. The 300$ to 700$ example is for Standard, a format which only allows you to play cards from recent sets. The other popular formats are Modern, which the most recent Pro Tour used, Legacy, which is a format that allows the playing of very old cards, and Vintage, which is like Legacy but with a less restrictive ban list. Modern decks range from 500$ to 800$ while Legacy decks can easily pass over the 1000$ mark. Let’s not even get into Vintage.If you’re both rich and a total asshole, it’s quite possible to spend well over 10000$ on a deck. I don’t fuck with that.)

I actually own a 450$ deck, and after my next check plan on expanding it further. It’ll be closer to 600$ after the changes I make to it. I’m serious about this shit.

And I think that’s it. I’m sure that there are other things I do that are incredibly nerdy, but those are the only ones I’m aware/the only ones that come to mind. Be prepared for an extensive Magic: The Gathering post in the near-future. I’ve been wanting to talk shop about it with someone for a while, and have very, very few outlets. You’ll have to bear with me.

Burn It All Down

Take solace in all
of the words that you write
the “fucks” and the “fags”
oh, the faceless you fight
as you fumble and freak
and you fester behind
the beautiful glow
of the monitor’s light
This sick
photosynsthesis
feeding your frail,
frail ego
finding your faith
in the fucking failure
of people
finally filling yourself
with some sick, structureless
self-worth

Are you happy now?

Answering Some Questions Anyway

So I was nominated for a Liebster Award by Kimeecat at the Contemplations of a Twenty Something blog, but I find myself unfortunately unable to accept due to my inability to comply with a few of the conditions. The first issue was finding a spot to brandish the Liebster Award logo somewhere amongst my sparse-on-purpose blog layout, and the second issue was choosing eight other bloggers to nominate in return. Eight! Thats quite a bit for someone as introverted as I am. I’d feel comfortable nominating like, six of you at the most. That’s not to say that I don’t love each and every one of you, I just have a hard time communicating with people who I don’t speak to on a regular basis, and something like this seems like asking quite a bit of someone I don’t know very well.

I did really appreciate the nomination and the sentiment, though, so I thought I’d answer the questions posed to me anyway.

-Last thing you think before you go to sleep?

My thoughts are incredibly chaotic when I’m attempting to fall asleep. It’s why I typically need medication to fall asleep properly. To be honest, I’m usually freaking out about how I’m not asleep yet.

-What’s your favourite comfort food?

Pizza. Pizzapizzapizzapizzapizza. Pizza of all shapes and sizes, as long as there’s a lot of it.

-Favourite book/film/TV show?

My favorite book is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. It’s the most entertaining book I’ve ever read, with poignant moments strewn throughout, almost accidentally. It’s absolutely brilliant.

My favorite film… It’s kind of a toss up, I guess. I have to admit that I don’t see a lot of movies, and I don’t exactly have a lot of context when it comes to the medium of movies in general. With that said, I think my three favorite movies are Scott Pilgrim Vs The World, 50/50 and Looper.

I was going to say that I don’t have a favorite TV show, but that’s just not true. It may not be on the air anymore, but my favorite TV show is easily Avatar: The Last Airbender. It’s ostensibly a kids show, but it goes so much deeper than any kids show should. It touches on topics like death and betrayal. It has incredibly powerful emotional moments that can resonate with anyone, of any age. It has characters that actually aren’t all that likable up front, but grow throughout the series into characters you can’t go without. If you ever have spare time on your hands and want to watch something that should be a bigger cultural touchstone than it is, please sit down and watch all three seasons of Avatar: The Last Airbender. You will have to endure the first two or three episodes of kids stuff and kind of rough voice acting, but the show really comes into its own about a third of the way into the first season, and from there, it’s a hilarious, action-packed and emotional ride that you’ll never want to end.

-What do you hope to achieve with your blog?

I don’t know, really. I hope to personally get better at writing. I hope to spread mental illness awareness. I hope to get some shit off of my chest that would just fester there otherwise. All of my followers know by now how frustrated I still am about my last breakup. I know, I know, it’s so typical, but I’m mostly writing this blog for my own sake, so it doesn’t bother me if I sound cliched occasionally.

-Is there a quote or phrase that resonates with you?

“We apologize for the inconvenience.”

God’s Last Message to His Creation from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series

-Tea or coffee?

Neither. Cigarettes.

-Thing that never fails to make you smile?

Talking on the phone with my friends Jake and Trevor. That’s about it.

-3 things you want to try and do this year?

I’d like to learn Japanese, write 30 seconds of music every day, and read a little more.

-3 words that you think other people use to describe you?

Answering this question will expose my deep, deep lack of confidence far too openly, so I’m going to pass.

-Favourite color?

Red. For a number of reasons. Maybe one day I’ll get into it. And no, it’s not because it’s the color of blood. There’s actually a whole lot more to it than that. It’s not quite that simple.

-What was the reason for starting your blog?

I was bored. That was literally my reasoning. I know, it’s a fantastic story.

-If you could pick one fictional character to be your friend, who would it be and why?

Scott Pilgrim. We’d get along way too well. Read the graphic novels if you want to understand why. Also, read the graphic novels, they’re fantastic.

-What is the best prank you have ever played on someone else?

I can’t think of any that I’ve ever done.

-Where is the best holiday destination you have been to?

Like, on vacation? I guess I just like California a whole lot. Oh, and Oregon. Those places are great. God, I miss the west coast. It’s so dreary out here in the east.

-Are you a day person or a night owl?

Both. I’m not a morning person, though. I’m not a morning person even a little bit.

I guess if I could choose one to be, I’d be a night owl, but that would require a little more personal freedom in my life than I have right now, seeing as how I live under my parents’ roof at the moment.

-When was the last time a stranger did something genuinely nice for you?

People do little nice things for me all the time. I really appreciate the genuine “Thank you”s that I get at work. they help me get through the day.

The last really major thing I can remember though is a couple of years ago when my car broke down at one in the morning on my way home from work. My phone was dead and I was about to have a panic attack when someone pulled up. He happened to know a lot about cars and fixed my car right there on the spot. He then offered to follow me part of the way home so that he could help me if it still wasn’t functioning right, telling me I could pop my hand out of the window to let him know when to stop following me so I wouldn’t have to worry about a stranger pulling up to my house at one in the morning. So he followed me until I got one-to-two turns away from my house, I gave him the sign, and he kept on going. He helped me, and made sure I wasn’t scared, and made sure it wasn’t creepy or dangerous at all. I will never, ever, ever forget what that man did for me that day. It was an incredible act of kindness that still means the world to me, even today.

-What is your favourite home cooked meal?

My father makes these super-great white-people enchiladas. What I mean by that is that they are enchiladas in name only. They aren’t a Mexican dish in the least the way dad prepares them, but I love the way they taste.

-Do you still see yourself blogging in a years time?

Absolutely.

-What is your proudest achievement?

My three performances in front of crowds. Those three times that I played my own music in from of people were my greatest moments.

-What is your favourite way to make someone’s day?

I’m not sure. I just try to be polite, and make sure that people know that I like them. That’s really all that I can do.

And sometimes, I bring my mom home some coffee from near my work. She likes that.

A Statistical Analysis Of Nothing

Look, just because someone has numbers to back up something they’re saying doesn’t make it true.

What brought that up?

I work at a bookstore, and the “Current Affairs” section of the store makes me absolutely fucking sick. The entire goddamn section is filled with books written by people who are taking advantage of people’s fear and hatred in order to sell them something. It’s fucking terrible. The titles might as well all say either “Here’s Why Democrats Are Stupid: The Book” or “Here’s Why All Republicans Deserve To Die” or “Here’s Me Spouting Bullshit About The Latest Issue So That You Can Tell People On Facebook Why They’re Wrong”. It’s a giant goddamn circlejerk of assholes who want you to pay them to make you feel good about being an asshole.

It’s fucking terrible. You can find a statistic or study to prove literally anything, including the fact that statistics can prove literally anything.

Here’s one that says that smoking pot actually improves the functionality of your lungs.

Here is a website that claims the opposite.

I could keep going. I could find statistics to prove opposites all fucking day, but I don’t want to. It all makes me sick to my stomach.

The internet is filled with people saying they can back up their irrational and crazy view with numbers, and my bookstore has a section dedicated to authors who do just that.

Look, I guess that all I’m trying to say is that you shouldn’t let these fucking fear-mongerers rule you. Don’t believe every scare story on the news, don’t freak out about a new study your friend pointed you to on social media, and don’t buy books in the “Current Affairs” section of any bookstore. You’re better than that. You have better places to expend your time, emotional energy, and money.