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Blooms Of The Third Moon

It's snowing outside...

Who would've thought we'd have snow in the middle of March? Down here in Stockholm where we usually don't even have it for Christmas.

It's been a strange year this year, not least with the covid strain sweeping through our human realm and populating with pandemic swoop result, but also with the weather.

Also with a lot of things, but let's just focus on the weather since that's what we Swedes typically tend to do when we get together and don't have anything else to talk about. Or don't dare take the step to controversies over common courtesies. I don't know if it's really like that anymore. Maybe be a myth but...

Some time last year - not sure when - we had a full month of cloud. Not a ray of light. Not total darkness but total gray and gloomy all day, and short days.

A few weeks in I was getting severely depressed; reminded of how old posts I'd posted where I seemed overly so were really not blown out of proportion at all. That's really how you feel when you feel like that. and then when everything gets better you forget how low those lowest points can be... until you return there, to that bottomless quicksand pit it seems life throws you to every now and then, most recently for work-related uncertainty woes and/or simply lack of sunshine.

But the sun rays came back, and Christmas passed, and the day after we had snow. Just for a couple of days. Just enough to remind us that it really was Christmas.

The weather relapsed to melting again, then came New Year, and in came the snow again! To remind us it really was a New Year after all.

And then it passed, and all returned to normal, the weather started getting warmer, but the nights were cold and the days cloudy and still somewhat bleak... and then came the snow again!!! This time in full force.

It snowed so you could actually shovel, and feel there was snow, and it stayed for a whooping three weeks and then some! Didn't melt once. You could see the edges slowly creep away against the gravel on the sunniest days, and I spent one particular weekend walking so much I almost got burnt, in February! Who would've thought.

Gradually the snow piles grew lower, and then in three days and nights it melted away, leaving only gravel-strewn piles here and there as a winter memento, and the days went, and work picked up again, it seemed to get warmer, but the nights grew colder, and the day before yesterday the snow started falling again...

Just a little then, but today it's all out storm, and the world that was recently Springing up in green and turquoise (I don't know that it really was, it just seemed like a suitable color combo call out here) is suddenly covered in white once again.

Was actually feeling a little under the weather when I woke up today, maybe a bit too many late nights; early mornings; too much weight vests on walks in an attempt to get in shape without making extra time-consuming effort... but I've been eating supplements, feeling better, and as the layers pile outside I currently feel the best I've felt in a while today.

Almost had to let that one rhyme, like I do sometimes, though it makes better sense like this. Like chips. They make sense but don't make amends or bliss.

In normal wording now I realize I've come to actually really like snow.

On the darkest days it's what gives me hope. Whenever it comes around I brighten up. The world brightens up. Everything looks softer, and cozier, and clearer. It hides the dirt. It hides the trash people throw away. A shopping cart someone had dragged to a nearby underpass was entirely submerged for those full three winter weeks earlier on. We thought someone had finally fetched it.

I used to love summers like no other season, but lately I've been loathing the heatwaves that come with it, and realizing that maybe the thing I like most about them is really the sun, and in darker seasons the snow is almost like it's paler cousin. Like a third moon.

It might not give out as much D-vitamin and UV light, but it reflects the light there is. It's a helpful helper. A gifted uplifter. And ever since I started taking these daily cold showers I seem to have all the more an affinity for the cold that comes with it.

I love the sun. I love the snow. The way the weather's turning maybe we'll get a snowy summer this year too. And supposedly the gulf stream's stopping. Maybe we'll get a summer ice age too. Who knows?

Was going to weave in some mementos from last night's dream here too but I got side-tracked; don't remember that much about it anymore.

There were people after us though. The family has gathered in a room somewhere. A cozy place. We covered the windows. I crept in under a blanket. I was small again....

But summer's coming soon and it'll be fall again.

Pixel Day Raffle Stickers, Games, Promos...

Guess what just arrived in the mail over here!?

Pixel Day Raffle Stickers

Stickers and pins the dopest things. Thank you @Mabelma! :) And Super Happy Belated Pixel Day Forever After The Raffle!!! Shall in some way add to the merriment of this fine holiday with these here stickables next time it comes around... maybe... actually I'd rather frame them and/or stash them away safely in a container that'll keep them pristine forever, as the collector I am, but feels like I oughta showcase 'em somehow somewhere, so if there is any suitable day for such stickering maybe it'd be then...

Though I did just do so above too. If naught else there you go!

In other news I joined a couple game jams last week, if you missed my stuff here's The Flash Flood 2021 and INVISIPONG for the Lies & Tricks and Flash Forward jams in opposing order of linkage. They're both in Flash but should be running flawlessly via Ruffle through those links, for now and hopefully forever!

Also go check out @KillerRATband's new album! Metal instrumental at its most grueling and moody. AKA finest. It's a soundtrack made for the game with the same name, so maybe you'll want to play that too. More info on his page, and you can buy it here.

Somewhat unrelated but very relevant D.Va Clock's also looking for material for her Late Night with D.Va Clock series, which is great, do send her something!

And last but not least if you need a voice for anything, like this recent thing, feel free to hit me up! The smaller the role the better really. ;)

Good day y'all and thanks again for those stickers!

Tom Fulp On Flash & iPods

Flash will hopefully make some smart moves, so I think Flash has a bright future.

Tom Fulp, 2010, on the topic of Flash games running slow in iPhone. Oh how things changed since then...

I imagine in a few years we'll be hosting the site off an ipod.

Go read this old AMA if you want context. So much greatness. So much appreciation and inspiration.

May The Grounds live on for a hundred years and then some.

One Day Voice Acting Woes

Voice acting's no easy business!

I finally got around to trying my lines for a collab I'm participating in. The animator asked for them this week, and it's currently the last day of this week, and I'm not really feeling at the top of my game right now. Some of the lines require laughing like a black man, and never mind the black part, but laughing, naturally?! It may be one of the hardest things you can try. Especially when you're acting.

In real life I've always been somewhat proud of how naturally laughter came to me. When I was younger. When I actually laughed out loud.

I still do just not as frequently; not with the same ease as I did back then. Now it sometimes feels like I have to force authentic laughter just to keep myself happy, and in the realm of voice acting... no dice. Can't do that. Gotta make it sound not forced no matter what.

To make things worse I am running out of voice! I should've started on this when I had plenty of time to spare, for consecutive warm-up's and recording sessions, not one final day after a week without particularly much voicing, where it's all the more difficult to warm up to the warmer tones I need right now. Reminder to keep your voice consistent. And constant. At all times. Always ready.

I voiced a quick role earlier this week, just two lines then, but with this particular project I'm in company of three professional voice actors, of which one usually always does her lines for money, and it'd be a lie to say I'm not slightly intimidated by working with such greats. Like I have a place in their bastions of vocal mastery. Like I can actually do accents. Like I didn't start rapping more because I can't sing than because that's my true passion... or is it?

Maybe it is? Maybe it just really is the best modern day amplification of poetry there is, where focus is on lyrics more so than music and voice; the elements that I feel really matter?

But I better get back to my black voice now. Almost wish I wouldn't have applied for this; that I'd have let the animator find a black dude instead. Or any dude who's good at sounding like a black dude.

But I am good at black dudes! I have the perfect black dude voice.

You'll hear when this collab comes out y'all.

I over-dramatize a bit but that's why I blog you know. To clear my mind and so. And it's good to get out of your comfort zone. Just gotta relax, sound natural, laugh a little, and move onto whatever other dues await today...

They're piling up lately. And making me go crazy. Slightly. But it may be.


Falling Down (1993)

Falling Down (1993)

What does it take to bring a man to the breaking point?

A little warm weather? A traffic jam? An annoying fly? A school bus full of unruly kids who throw stuff out the windows? Unjustly inflated prices? An immigrant who hasn't learned your language? An impolite customer experience? A broken marriage? A lost job? A daughter who doesn't want to see you anymore?

For Michael Douglas - in-movie name still unknown, great movies do things differently like that - I'm not sure where the breaking point was, but that's where this movie starts, and we follow him on a walk through the city as he tries to get home, and give a snow globe to his daughter on her birthday.

Meanwhile a police officer is just about to retire. He's on his last day at work when the news come in that someone assaulted a a shop owner with a baseball bat, that someone was involved in a drive-by, that a shop owner's ended up dead... their ways collide at the pier, in one maybe not so fierce but tense and conclusive showdown, and that's the movie.

It's still bad-ass after all this time.

They paint the city in realistic colors. The golf club green; the rest of it sunny but dusty and cluttered, a paradise of poverty and unfair fates, which eventually brings our main character past the point of no return.

The pacing's calm, but never dull. The dialog's never wasted. The glimpses into the mind of a man who goes so over the line... makes you realize this could happen to just about anybody. What if that was me? What if that was my neighbor?

Maybe not really, but it doesn't feel exaggerated. They might not show the full transformation within the runtime of this movie, but it feels like they nail the essentials. The moment that really counts. The turning point. And that feels like one just about anyone could work their way up to. Though maybe they wouldn't handle things exactly as this guy did...

There's not a wasted minute in this. Everything is so balanced and well-timed. And the thing I like maybe most of all - that makes it feel all the more authentic somehow - is that it all takes place in a day. Just like any other. No excess darkness. No excess anything. And with a very linear progression. There's no break. No night's sleep. No moment of rest after which everything changes - or your perception of it changes. However many days it took for them to film this it's impressive they managed to make every day seem like just the one.

I watched this movie years back too, just recently watched Foo Fighter's Walk video, and had to see this again.

And it still stands. It's still the best executed breaking point movie I've ever seen. It should be up there in IMDB's Top 250. Maybe not the top top but somewhere there. And it better never be falling down.

 rated 5/5: friggin awesome

Dead Man Walking (1995)

Dead Man Walking (1995)

For Lee Robbins and Thelma Bledsoe...

If you wonder who those two people were, Thelma Bledsoe was director Tim Robbins' maternal grandmother, and Lee Robbins his paternal grandfather, who died during the filming of The Shawshank Redemption. One of the reasons Robbins dedicated this film to them is that they helped put him through college. Source.

The movie's a death row story, about a convict, a nun, and the world of hurt they go through together on their path to redemption.

Or rather his redemption. Her learning. Their mutual bonding and individual departure. It's some real shit. Slow but emotional.

I'm impressed with how effortless the soundtrack seems. It comes and goes but never takes over; never feels out of place.

The events are slow. There's a lot of dialog. Not a lot of action.

I think I tried to dislike this just a little for the religious touch, but how can I hate a message of love like this one. Or of a nun who doesn't preach, but does her job, no matter how taxing. I wish more leaders were like her. She reminds me of Mother Theresa. Selfless. Maybe a little naive. At first. Not when it's all over. Not halfway through either.

The movie feels authentic. Sad and authentic. Sad but true.
The mishaps and misunderstandings we go through. The luck of lack thereof we have, and how our lives can turn around in just one bad moment... not that I relate to the bad moment here depicted. Not that I've ever been totally out of my mind on drugs and booze. Not that I ever grew up in that kind of household. Luck's been on my side, but it's a movie you immerse yourself in regardless.

As the credits role I'm struck by the realization that you immediately know it's the nothing-after-the-credits kind too. Whenever did that become a rarity? Whenever did entertainment take over and the essentials of film get so lost? It's like when they stopped respecting the finality of the end they somehow lost an essential part of what a movie is.

That's all. Great watch. Already said it.

 rated 5/5: friggin awesome

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Keeping the world since 2004.