You are finite, Zathras is finite. This..... is wrong tool.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Update on a few things

Nathaniel has now gone to two ECFE classes. They've gone as well as could be expected. He's done pretty well with not taking toys away from the other kids, and while at his age you can't expect much active joint-play, he's always been interested in watching other children. The songs are, of course, inane and slightly insipid, but that's about right for the age group in question. It's stuff that I know they will enjoy, and it's amazing to me to watch Nathaniel's face as the group around him sings "and Nathaniel's here today, and Nathaniel's here today, yay Nathaniel!" or "The sign today is Water, the sign today is water, high ho a derio, the sign today is water." He's quite interested in what's going on and just taking it all in. The classes are on Thursdays.
This past Thursday went quite well. Stephanie had to leave at least as early as usual and Nathaniel got us up in plenty of time as is normal, but then I had to try to adjust his schedule so that the class doesn't come at the absolute worst time. It's scheduled for 12:30-2:30, which is, of course, right in the middle of lunch and then nap time. So instead, I've tried to keep him awake until about 10:00 so that we can have an early lunch and hopefully be ready to nap when we get home without getting too cranky. It went well, and I think it's going to work for the long term. It might even end up being the regular schedule rather than just on Thursdays. We'll see how he takes it.
But he ate well, he slept for acceptable lenthgs of time, and was not cranky for the most part. Even when Stephanie came home for around five minutes before going out again to a retirement party, he still was in good spirits and ate well, played calmly, read books and was agreeable in getting ready for bed (even if he didn't actually fall asleep until after a good hour of rocking.) I could do with more days like that. Far too often I end up feeling like I"m doing a horrible job because he's cranky, or I feel like I'm not giving him enough attention because I'm reading or browsing the web while he plays in the living room. I worry that I'm being too selfish in hoping he naps so that I can have an hour or if I'm lucky two to myself. (I haven't been able to bike in weeks and weeks for uncertainty in how long he'll nap.) If he remains this reasonable, I think things will be Ok.

Last night Jake and I went to Town Hall to watch the Twins game. I'd been wanting a night off away like that for weeks, and it finally came and it went pretty well also. The game was a bit of a bust, we lost 10-1, and my Walleye Hoagie was very disappointing given my wonderful memories of it, and there weren't any good seasonal beers or cask ales, but the beer was still good, and the ability to just be away, talk about nothing and reminisce for three or four hours was really nice. I brought home a growler of Hope and King Scotch Ale too, and look forward to having a chance to break it out and drain it.
The Twins were supposed to have Carl Pavano pitch last night, but having re-jigged the rotation to get the playoff order they want, it was Francisco LIriano. Which wouldn't have matter the least to me, had I not earlier in the day shaved a magnificantly ridiculous Pavstache in honor of his start. I will continue to sport it today (and we'll see for how long) as he pitches this evening instead.

Star Trek and Star Wars

I recently picked up a few Star Trek episodes from the library. They were in a set of "Fan Collectives" meaning that it was a theme of Time Travel across four of the series (Enterprise was not included.) I was a big TNG fan back in the day, but now I can't really get myself to watch reruns even. It's not the case with other shows which require a difficult suspension of disbelief, and it's not about the writing, because there are certainly some good episodes; I just can't stand them any more. It's strange. Anyway, I also got Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, and something struck me while I watched it. The difference between Star Trek and Star Wars... and by extension the prequel trilogy as well.

The models show a big difference. Star Trek models, indeed Star Trek in general has a very clean, sterile look. Star Wars in general has a very dirty look. Used, battered, etc. I think that lends itself to seeming more realistic. In a world where peopel are exploring planets, things get dirty and used. I realize that the idea of a perfect future like Star Trek includes magical cleaning things, but give me a break, it's just too much. I was startled to see that ILM interviews in the special features of the ST:III DVD echoed precisely this, comparing their model-making process to those for Star Wars and for Alien(s.)

Then I thought about the prequel trilogy. Everything looks much cleaner. I'd previously thought that perhaps, even though the CGI was quite good, and at times indistinguishable from model work, that was what had bothered me about the prequels, but I think I hadn't quite hit on it with that. What bothered me wasn't that it was all CGI, but rather that everything seemed much too clean and shiny for Star Wars. It's in keeping with the chronology; the prequels take place during the height of the Republic, when things were shiny and new; clean and kept up, but it still just doesn't have the same feel. And I think that's what actually bothered me about the CGI, and what made the prequels have so much of a different feeling and simply a lack of the magic that was inherent in the original trilogy, where you had the sense of a greatness lost, and could see remnants of it. I'm a sucker for lost technology and stuff like that, loving that discussion in The Lost World.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

So it's been like eight years since I updated this...

Been forever since I posted on this blog, and a part of that has been the weight I feel of trying to make an update after such a long hiatus. Of course, this is the same dilemma for a number of things. If you wait too long for something, and are intimidated by the wait, it just gets worse and harder to start. So I figured, best to just post. But then it comes to actually writing something, and even with all that's been going on, I just can't seem to get the energy to write anything of any interest. I've been suffering from some depression/malaise/listlessness the last several weeks, and that hasn't helped. Anyways, I'm hoping that merely by making an update I'll be more likely to begin updating again. Also, I'm thinking that I might be better about it if I don't feel like it has to be every day again. So we'll see how it goes.