Friends, acquaintences, and other social matters.

It’s the Milgram device all over again

Photo taken by sister, as per my instructions, in Sydney.

It’s 1.30pm and I am still in bed with a cold. Cancelled musical plans for today, because I don’t want to be coughing and spluttering, blowing my nose every two seconds, and spreading it to other people.

Firstly – irony: Since the Netherlands defeat in the WC final, New Zealand is the only unbeaten team in the World Cup.

There is something about Facebook that pisses me off the most. No, it’s not something integral in Facebook itself, but moreso, something that people do on Facebook. I hardly ever sign onto Facebook – in fact usually it takes an email prompt telling me someone has sent me a message or invitation, and then I click on the link, check it out, and exit. But on the rare occasion, out of boredom or curiosity that I linger on the homepage of it, I am thoroughly reminded of why I vow to never do so again until the next spout of craaazy insomnia or whatever. I just don’t understand why some people feel the urge to sit on Facebook ALL DAY and “like” everyone’s statuses and comments, nor why they are on Facebook commenting people back and forth when I know for a fact that they are already either txting or IMing each other (or worse, both).

Some girls that I see out and about in town, at the pub, clubs, etc… what are they doing? Being annoying brats and taking photos (with such bad skill it really makes my head ache) with blinding use of flash whilst everyone else it just trying to have a good time… in semi-darkness. Don’t get me wrong, I love taking pictures, especially when I’m having a great time at something – but some people take it waaay too far, taking waaay too many pictures with the same people, in every possible pose, and it just gets ANNOYING. Especially on the odd occasion I’m going somewhere without a doorlist, requiring me to stand in queue for godknowshowlong next to snap-flashing girls. Urghhh. What’s even worse than withstanding them toppling over now and then – because, you know, trying to piggyback each other whilst in short dresses in a queue thus showing off most of your bra and cellulite is very attractive – and then flashing flahsing, FLASHING, is what happens the next morning… these pictures are then splashed aaaaaaaaaaallll over Facebook, with the people in it all tagged, who then start commenting on each picture. “Oh I remember that, I was soooo wasted”, “I don’t remember that, take that off, I look awful”, “And then this and that and this and that happened before/after this photo”, etc etc. It just gets me so bored and put off, and deters me from Facebook.

Then, there’s the type of people, who (yes, I know for a fact) are in the same room as each other, all on their separate computers, logged onto Facebok, commenting back and forth with each other – WHY?! WHYYYYYY, WHYYYYYYY?!?!!??!!!!

Whatever happened to using Facebook (and other social devices on the internet) as a means of interacting with people that you don’t really get a chance to interact with in real life? At least, that’s what I use Facebook for. If I can easily reach someone via a quick txt message or by merely turning around to face them to converse – why would I want to, oh, open Facebook, log in, find the correct person’s page, then … etc…

Now I just sound like a raging, raving looney; but I’ve wanted to have a rant about that for ages. Plus, I’m still in bed… with a rather large (and growing) pile of used tissues. Gross. Semester starts next Monday, I want to be better!

Off topic, but the title is a lyric which refers to the Milgram Experiment. That stuff (and subsequent related links) gets you thinking…

Jack Kerouac

To take you back when… I know it’s been so long

Tried to have a song-writing, jamming session today but failed miserably. I don’t think that the fact that I was so out of it due to having stayed up well into the morning hours watching the footy helped.

The drawings on Julia’s blog reminded me of a habit I’ve noticed more and more recently – lip biting. I know I’ve always done it, now and then; but lately I’ve been catching myself doing it more often. I’m not sure what it means… I think it happens when I’m thinking, uncertain, weighing things up. Contemplating. Anticipating. Nervous. Why?

I usually have at least one long thread of thought that I ponder on, and debate to myself. Turning it over and over, dwelling on things. But strangely, not today. I feel rather numb and empty and lifeless. Thus probably why so music-less today. As I’d said to him, “I don’t have a single musical cell in me today” :(.

This is the cake I’d decorated for a friend a few weeks ago – eeek at the sloppy edges though!

If my life is mine, what shouldn’t I do? Everybody just wants to fall in love, everybody just wants to play the lead.

During the last week of semester a conversation I had with a classmate went something like this:
R: Don’t get tooo stressed out, it will all be fine. I mean, heck, I love jazz school.
Me: Asides from the obvious, why do you?
R: Well for one, who the heck else can say “I go to jazz school in a castle”?!
And I guess he’s right.

These photos were taken on Friday night in town with Sinead on our walk back to my car. The photos in black and white were unintentionally nice angles that I found when I took a closer, chilled out look at the surroundings that I’ve had for the past semester. It’s funny how everything that I usually bustle past in a rush to and from classes actually appeared really photogenic to me, on a cold, winters night at 1-2am. Perhaps the combination of the cold night air and the lacking elements of people and time restraints was what made these usually mundane corners pop out to me that night. The first 3 photos are taken just a few metres from the Kenneth Myers Centre (the “castle” that jazz school is located in, photographed below). The second 3 photos are just around the corner where I would usually park my car if for some reason I had shorter classes and decided to drive instead of ferrying. The last 7 are all taken around the same block as well. The odd photo is of the view out of my car and through the rearview mirror; and the sky tower was shot off a reflection.

Isn’t it ironic that most people my age I know agree with me wholeheartedly that Auckland (and NZ in general) is such a beautiful place to live, and yet we cannot wait to leave the minute that we can – most likely when we’ve finished completely our degrees. I kept intending to take photos of the amazing view that I am treated to by my daily to and fro ferry rides, but I never remember to take a camera. Maybe next semester.

Being out 3, 4 nights in a row has really taken a toll on my sleeping habits and overall tiredness. And, although I have officially finished Semester 1 at jazz school, my final assessments didn’t go as well as I would’ve hoped. I know I can’t really blame anyone for anything, but one thing that was beyond my control was the failure of the drummer during a very important song that I had arranged, and had high hopes for. There’s only so much that I can do as a bass player when the drummer doesn’t play in double time as per rehearsed. I’m just upset that it is my mark that will suffer, and most especially when it was the first time that I had nailed an entire structure of a solo without getting completely lost of out this world – let alone the fact that it was without music! I have no idea how I managed to memorise ten tunes over the space of a couple of days, but I know my arse will be kicked into gear next semester, and I will start earlier. One more exam for my Computer Science paper on Tuesday, and then I will really really be on holiday. That is, if the lingering work that’s been prescribed in advance for next semester can qualify as a total holiday. It’s once again times like these that I envy those doing other degrees the true joy of having no work to haunt their minds over semester break.

These last photos are just… well, some shenanigans we got up to. I haven’t really looked at the band photos I took that night.

Surprisingly, I have a kind-of backlog of blog entries I never got around to posting. Maybe I will catch up.

Darling I’m down and lonely with the fortunate only. So sentimental, not sentimental, no, romantic not disgusting yet

Today is the last day of lectures and lessons of semester one, 2010. Today, I had my last improvisation playing assessment. I had got virtually no sleep, and no, it didn’t go well. I am just hoping that I will pass. Today is also the start of the long weekend for Queens Birthday. Although I didn’t even know that, because classes have ended so I will not get Monday off anyway. Plus, I have soooo much work to do over the weekend in order to prepare for my repertoire jury assessment next Wednesday.

Thanks to the combination of beautiful (however freezing) weather and the start of the long weekend, the ferries I had taken in and out of town to university were both relatively empty compared to usual. There were a lot of school aged kids milling around the city in the afternoon for a spot of shopping as they had finished classes early. I rather miss being excited for the hour early, 2pm finishes that we used to get at college last year and prior. It feels so weird not being young anymore.

Speaking of leaving college though, my sister just had her last official day of school – at the age of 16, she’s now “graduated early” (on paper, at least) or “dropped out”, in order to attend Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA, on a full Women’s Golf Scholarship. She had a shared lunch at school today, and her friend made her the cutest cupcakes ever. You can’t really tell due to the flash in this photo, but the white bits are actually indented to look like golf balls – how adorable!

On the topic of cakes, this is what my (rather hastily made) birthday cake from my sister looked like. It tasted great, but I swear, they don’t look as amazing as they used to… shhh.

I am sooooo looking forward to freedom and late nights out starting Wednesday next week after my assessment! So far I have plans for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday already. And very likely Saturday. Inebriated shenanigans with loud music and much better clothing than my daily 5-minute scramble, I’m sure!

I’m not the way that you found me, I’m neither here nor there. One day I’m happy and healthy, Next I ain’t doing so well

I’ve been listening to The Dead Weather’s Sea of Cowards whenever I need a kick of energy lately (which is all the time), especially first thing in the morning; thus I felt this entry’s title, derived from “The Difference Between Us” was appropriate, as it seems to describe precisely how I’ve been feeling.

Gloom aside though, my mum and sister are busy baking in the kitchen – yes, yes, whilst I am relaxing on the couch making this post, basking in delicious smells – and the first batch out of the oven consisted of scrumptious oatmeal chocolate chip cookies! I was disappointed after 2 cookies that I had already eaten my allocated allowance, as apparently these are to be taken to some golf event tomorrow. Grrr!

Last night I finally got around to renting out a couple of movies I’d been meaning to watch for a long time. I know both Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels and Eyes Wide Shut are both pretty old movies, but there’s a reason they’re both so famous, and I’m glad to finally have watched them. For starters, I know Jason Statham’s not exactly Oscar-winning material, but he’s never failed to entertain me in a film. I still can’t get over how he was a national diver. Heh. On the other hand, I had never taken much interest in the idea of Eyes Wide Shut. I remember my parents and the press had made a big deal out of it, back all those years when it first came out, but what had piqued my interest was the fact that we had been assigned to watch it for a Scholarship English tutorial last year. I’d ended up watching A Clockwork Orange and Fight Club instead, but never got around to anything else – let alone the idea of Tom Cruise being jealous of his wife’s sexual fantasies. It’s such a bizarre movie… I’m still not even sure what to think of it.

This is a pretty slack post, and I didn’t even take this next photo, but why bother when Mum’s already taken it, and it’s cold and wet outside? I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the onset of autumn (winter soon, please!), and this is a corner of our deck and backyard. You can hardly see the back deck that the chair and table are on, as it’s virtually completely covered by fallen trees. Sweeping those are a nightmare.

Friday afternoon adventures:
1/ Remembering the wrong time for the ferry home, thus leaving the guitar boys to walk to the ferry… then discovering I had a 1.5 hour wait to spend alone, bored!
2/ Talking the guys down at Boardertown to help me get my broken Wesc headphones replaced, even though I lost the warranty and receipt.
3/ Seeing Takuma, who had been doing tennis training in Texas for the past few months.
4/ Walking the length of the beach catching up on things, being silly, reminiscing.
5/ Spying on the guy doing that thing that I can’t remember the name of… the sport where they stand on a board that looks like a surfboard, and are just, uhh, paddling along?!! Takuma says it’s all the hype and are all over sports magazine.
6/ Discussing how far away the rain is, as Rangitoto Island quickly disappeared behind the clouds…
7/ Being ambushed by the rain, and discovering just how far we’d walked down the beach – as running on increasingly wet sand in damp, tight jeans and dr martens wasn’t the easiest thing to do! Especially because I’m so unfit now…
8/ Spending the rest of the early evening chatting over twinkies and then going shopping for a new beanie to get me through winter.

These Cookie Dough Bites are amazing. Dammit, I need more of that stuff.

And last, but not least, I took a detour on my way home at about 3am to pick up a belated birthday present. 3x Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds albums. Just because Matt thinks I need to be enlightened. I can tell you now, it’s going to take me quite a while to get into them. But alas, I am very impressed by the wrapping job. It’s too bad I couldn’t get a photo of it whilst it was still wrapped.

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