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Resolutions 2014

The hours until midnight are ticking by. I've been watching Don & Don 2, and just took a break from the second one to eat an amazing dinner on smoked salmon trout with home-grown potatoes and lingon-berries in water (first time I taste the latter) together with my family.

The sky is forebodingly dark outside, all is silent, but somewhere out there I'm sure preparations in honor of the forthcoming year are beginning to stir. A sudden spark of light gives a sneak peak at what's soon about to come, and I'm looking forward to it! The flares of luminescent fire! The explosive grandeur and prowess, and the mist of smoke that drifts over the rooftops, until the commotion dies down all that reminds of the past year is a sour smell of gunpowder. The first morning after this day is always like the day after a great battle. You are at peace with yourself; the world is calm. Without the fireworks, I wonder if the slate would feel as fresh as it does?

Before this, there's so much that remains to be done that I've been optimistic enough to think I'd actually have time to finish before the New Year, that I now realize I don't. A set of resolutions? That's one thing I shouldn't wait with. After a quick review of the oaths I took last time... what should I plan for? What are my visions? What do I really want to achieve? I wish I had a few days to contemplate my innermost desires and the choices I want to take in life, but will have to make do with the time I've been given. Maybe that could be a plan for next year, to start writing my resolutions in time? But then, that would mean that I am assuming the resolutions of this year won't leave me with such an immense sense of satisfaction and purpose that I need to perform this ritual again. Not very promising! :D

I liked my old 'I Want To Do', 'I Want To Be' type lists, but it strikes me as I'm writing that there's a big psychological flaw in that approach. Never say want if you are going to do something! But what about never say never? Aaanyway, in 2014, I...

Will Do

  • Project 2014 Every day of the year I'm going to write something creative, like a poem, a rhyme or a short story. I'll be posting them online too (though maybe not always on the day in question), right here.
  • One Album I'm going to record, produce and somehow distribute at least one original full-length album of my own.
  • One Book I'm going to write or finish writing a complete literary work, and seek to get it published. Bonus goal: Actually get it published.
  • Work I'm going to apply for at least ten jobs every week, unless I get a full-time occupation or earn at least 10k SEK/month (after taxes).

Will Become

  • Strong! Unless I am absolutely unable to do so, I will walk a minimum of 3km each day, stretch each day and exercise in some other way twice a week. Bonus goal: martial arts!
  • Self-Sufficient! Absolute financial stability is more of a must than a want at this point.
  • Dentally Trouble-free! I will brush my teeth twice a day. Bonus goal: fight phobia and visit a dentist again.
  • Happy! I will strive towards attaining a mindset that lets me wake up early every day, with a smile, full of hope and vigor. I will appreciate life. I will savor the taste of good food, the wamrth of the sun, fresh air; all others sensations to their fullest. Bonus goal: never stall.

So that's it. That's my plan for the new year. Is it too much? Is it too little? Is it all irrelevant? Am I putting an unnecessary burden on my shoulders just by making this list, or will it actually help me become a better person? I hope it's the latter.

As a wise man once told me, it's through doing what you are uncomfortable with doing that you evolve and mature as a human being... and I'm definitely uncomfortable with a couple of the points on this list. For once, I will achieve them all. I'm somewhat uncomfortable by the thought of that too, not by the thought of success, but maybe... the possibility of failure? It's why we procrastinate, if we do, but that's one bad habit I'm going to break completel. Now back to watch the rest of Don 2, and in a while... a salute for the New Year!

Resolutions Aftermath 2013

So, how did I fare? I posted an early version of this back in January, the first day after the new year... but that doesn't count for much. :) Since somewhere mid-year I honestly forgot all about what I'd planned, and now it's about time I started making plans for the new year! Without further ado:

I Want To Do

  • Interesting Things! Every week I will either give myself a continuous challenge that lasts the full week or a one day special event. NOPE
  • Well that didn't work out at all. During the first portion of the year, I do have some vague memories of moments of variety in my otherwise somewhat monotone life (it must be, since I barely remember what I've been up to the bigger part of the year). If I'd been concious over this plan, then maybe things would've been different, but I have no memory of when I forgot about it and stopped actively seeking to greet at least one day each week with a smirk instead of a smile.

  • Martial Arts! I will start training at least one martial art, either at home or in group, for real. NOPE
  • Wonder why this did happen? I totally planned on starting with something... no time? More like waste of time. :/ I'm not in as bad shape at this time of the year as I was the previous year though, so that's got to count for something...

  • Music! I will do (at least) weekly vocal practice and start gathering equipment for professionally recording and composing stuff. ALMOST
  • Yeah. I've done something! It may be last minute, but I now have an external sound interface, a potential microphone on route and Djemba or Bongo drum coming soon. I've also recorded two semi-professional hiphop tracks for NG, created a Christmas album for grandma (a collaborational effort with my sister) and I have a few more works on route. Practice? Eh... not the most active, but at least I rhyme a bit at least every other day. I'm not as prepared for the new year, musically, as I guess I hoped I would be... but it's been all but a standstill.

I Want To Be

  • Strong! I will exercise regularly, stretch regularly and walk at least 5km every day. NOPE
  • Not even almost? I have walked at least 5km every day, though, but rarely ever stretched ('cept at the start of the year) and I've never exercised regularly ('cept at the start of the year). Actually went jogging for a few kilometers the day before yesterday, sooo... nah, not part of the plan man.

  • Self-sufficient! The goal is to become financially stable and able to sustain myself in all aspects of life. NOPE
  • I have earned... a little. Nowhere near enough to be financially self-sufficient though.

  • Calm! Don't worry be happy. :) NOPE
  • Something about an all but stable mental state here. :/ But I try! All the time! Every day! That goes by! With a roar! With a rhyme! Life is gray! In my mind! It's all about the mindset... right now I feel like I'm there, but it's not constant; never trouble-free.

I Want To Have

  • White Teeth! I will brush my teeth at least twice a day. ALMOST
  • If you add up all my brushing times, It'll probably average out to around 1,4 per day... maybe even more! :D Slowly but unsteadily, riding the streets towards whiter teeth...

  • Good Eyes! I will exercise my eyes every day. NOPE
  • Did one just now, thank you me for the reminder!

  • Less Stuff! I will buy only items that are useful or good to give away. YEPP
  • I think.... I think I made it! :D I've bought a ton of presents, I haven't bought... that much other stuff. I think most of it's useful too. Am I deceiving myself here or no? Hmm, maybe some of those games weren't entirely useful...

In conclusion, the results of my resolution have been: SHIT! MAN! But ah well, it's been a good year anyway. More on that later...

Project 2014

Starting tomorrow, I'm going to write something creative ever day, for the rest of the year. Whether it be a minty Cinquain, free verse from a dim brain, a simpler haiku or a rhyme that I do, I plan on constantly keeping the pen moving and staying inspired.

2014 is going to be my year, the year of the Snake, so I was a bit hesitant to start a project like this that'd require so consistent effort when maybe I should/want-to focus on other tasks... but does that hesitation have any merit? If I really aim to make the best out of this year, it's probably going to be with words. What better way than this to keep an edge. And it's five years since my last yearly poetry project so it'll be fun to see how I've evolved since then.

I've learned from my mistakes, from that past poetry session that lasted a full year. Writing a poem every single day at times took it's toll, but I always write, so prepare to see bursts of free-verse amongst bored minds on four lines. And probably the occasional haiku when time is not enough.

I may not always post these rhymes on time online (especially not during summer vacation) but I will keep writing, and update this category when I have computer access, and keep it separate from the blog because... well, at one piece per day I don't want to flood the activity stream! Here's to an amazing new year, full of hope and opportunity! And to a ton of fun; creative writing day out... night in.

Commencing... Project 2014.

Week 52 - Last Week

It's the final week!

Soon 2013 will be over, and it is yet again time to sum up the events of the year (wait... have I actually never done that before? It's about time then!) and see how many resolutions I was able to keep. I'm not really looking forward to looking back at them resolutions considering I have this bad habit of planning too much (they're not promises - they're plans)... but at least I didn't forget all about what I had planned until at least mid-year... I think. Next year sure is going to be awesome! :)

Until New Year though, there's still plenty I'd like to accomplish. I've been doing some site maintenance today, going through all posts from 2005 (the grand 10 year anniversary of the site is closing in so I'm hoping to prepare something!), added a Motherload link to the games page, added /sleepwalker.html">this old animation, and fixed the linkdump. It's still locked, but at least now you can view the links again! Though spam bots really turned it into a big dump during the latter years...

I had to switch out my old Flash Embedding plugin (I've used Kimli Embed earlier) a couple of days back, so I did some research and I found this. As minimal as it gets! But, since it uses a new shortcode I've thus had to change the embed info for all Flash entries, my entire MP series (a hundred entries!) and then some. They might not all work yet, but I'll take time to revise those later on, still have the entire Flash section to refurbish anyway... with a couple of other hundred entry series. :O Man there's a lot of stuff left. But baby steps are better than no steps, amirite?

The about page has been updated too, though it's a bit temporary, and I created a new category for any pages that might get removed or swapped out in the future. That might be interesting to look back at in a few decades. :) So that's at least one page down, eight hundred to go... well nah, I don't know about 800, but it's a lot! I am glad I'm finally making a move though, tis been too long since I did anything other than blog and tweak the CSS.

Speaking of CSS, I did plenty of that yesterday. You are now viewing an early preview of the 2014 theme! Changes include style of headers, the green and red layout element gradients, that search bar to the top right, less comment form clutter, support for rotating banner images on some sections of the site and sidebars that now support image links without them getting distorted at leasts. Also working on making the site a bit more responsive on lower resolutions, but that's a big WIP. And I'm getting somewhere with the new, expanded design of this site too!

I used to have a 'Cyber' category for updates like this... was that better? Not sure if posts about the site are about my life or not, and they're not really 'tech' either. I've been thinking about the categories I use and how it's probably some kind of stupid four-letter OCD idea the way they turned out. Tech used to be Digital, and before that it was Computers/Internet (split). Code was going to be for Code Snippets but turned into posts about design as well, but now that there's the Devblog I'm not sure what content to post in which one. Play used to be Gaming. Life used to be Blog a while, after it was Life, until all four Blog categories went to the blog and the rest of them stayed outside... and plenty of posts are still wrongly sorted within the parent Blog category...

But I don't really need these categories, do I? I've been thinking of using tags to filter content forms instead of categories (I already to that for certain types, like rhymes) and just keep the blog Blog, but I should go through old posts first, not do anything hasty like I always do when I want to make some big changes! Maybe I'm overthinking this? :P

It's been a good week though, I got a bunch of fun things for Christmas, like a radio-controlled Helicopter (Nano model, the smallest there is!) that's actually not too difficult to steer, clothes, sweets n chips n stuff, comics, a Bongo/Djembe drum (I get too clhoose) amongst other things. And I wasn't just getting, my presented parcels took over three hours to wrap up, and I didn't even have time to add any ribbons. We stayed up till past midnight opening presents, spent some time with the family the day after, finished my piece for the Christmas Collab... finally... and I'm working on an interface for the annual BBS Awards right now, amongst movies. Deja vu btw, I've already posted about some of this. Conclusively: it's been a good week, and I just posted a batch of movie reviews so check those out.

And btw, check out one more thing that I got for Christmas. Thank you Elitistinen!

Here's last week.

Dhoom (2004)

Dhoom (2004)

Ok, I'll be honest, I thought this was going to be about Doom. I thought it was going to be a Bollywood version of the Hollymood movie with similar name based on similar game, that failed to live up to it's reputation, buuuut... no such luck.

Fortunately, it turned out be a great movie anyway! I'm not sure why people look down on Bollywood movies so much (they do in the Wstern hemisphere, shamefully), because this is a prime example of how many of them are and how they're supposed to be... and why I need to start watching more Bollywood movies! There's the traditional dancing and romance (much unlike superficial Western mimickery) and also the less traditional action. Motorbikes, speed, fights on rooftops, boat rides, car chases, crazy jumps, cops and robbers, a plot that's not entirely generic and will provide you with plenty of unexpected twists along the way!

Not to forget, plenty of entertainment.

In a way this is like an Indian version of Fast & Furious. There's the same clash between good and bad, the good guy falling in love with one of the bad girls, regular races that spiral into something a bit more violent... come to think of it, the plot is almost entirely the same! The good guy goes undercover (well at least he doesn't start out a cop in this one), there's that grand final heist that doesn't go as planned and... well you'll see, if you watch it. I'm off to see the sequel...

 rated 3/5: not bad

Vikingdom (2013)

Vikingdom (2013)

A story of Vikings, in this day and age! Wasn't expecting this.

I also wasn't expecting to see the actor who played villian in Blade - The Trinity play the main character in this one. I didn't know who he was, but it turns out he's Dominic Purcell, an actor with quite a list of merits. At first he didn't seem like the best choice in being a hero, but by the end of the film I'm reconsidering that though. And considering he has a Norwegian father the role as viking is definitely merited; inherited.

It's strange seeing International stars try to play people from the North, but they do a good job. It seems the main criteria for sorting them out was a bulk of muscle, there's plenty of that, and then there's the rather unexpected Jon Foo who's martial arts make each better all the swifter. Amongst the giant Vikings he's an odd sight, but I'm glad he made it into the movie! Definitely the highlight of pretty much all battles he participates in (and I'm glad to see he participates in pretty much all battles).

This movie reminded me a bit of 300, in how the glory of battle is portrayed, and how death is rewarded. It tells the tale of an alliance between gods, of Thors attempt at overthrowing the human world to get rid of the false god (who we now know as just - God), of deceit, betrayal, temptation, love, sacrifice, all kinds of goodness! The battles are intense, and though the acting is far from perfect and some characters irritatingly apathetic or naive, the battles are what you want to watch this for. If you don't want to watch the battles, there's not much of value left. Oh, the sceneries are pretty cool too. Good watch!

Let's hope Vikings are the next big thing in the movie biz! :D

 rated 3/5: not bad

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