Monthly Archives: October 2013

Embrace your weirdness

Fifi_3dArtists, designers, writers – us creative, right-brained folk are weird. I’m weird. I admit it, and I love it. And I love rolling in mutual proverbial weirdness with other nerds like myself. We were cut from a different mold, a mold of limitless structure, things to obsess over, and worlds to escape to. So, fellow nerds, I have a fun story for you. I was caught at work being weird. Super embarrassing, totally, but it was a thing that happened.

To start with, I am the one who most visitors passing through the office would say “has the cool office.” There’s nine offices in our corner of the building, and pretty much everyone has the standard family photos, corporate swag, and the houseplant or two. One of the data entry clerks has a movie poster, but that’s as crazy as they get. Not me. I have wall to wall Anime scrolls (Ouran High School Host Club x2, Soul Eater, and Naruto). I have two more Naruto posters, a WoW poster, Magic the Gathering Angel portraits, a giant typography map of the globe (with a heart around Japan and South Korea <3) and a World of Warcraft stand-up dragon that’s taller than me. And then the toys! I’ve got Legos on my filing cabinet, action figures sprawled across my desk (including my ninja above, and yes, I made her) and various Japanese knick-knacks all over the place. Everyone stops in my office to see what I do. I’m the graphic designer. “Of course you are,” they always say.

So, to the story. Every Thursday morning meeting, seven of us sit around a table. Whenever my mind starts to wander, the first thing I do is notice what color everyone is wearing. Okay, not that weird, right? It gets worse. I then start ordering everyone in my head on a chromatic scale. For instance, my big boss is wearing a blue shirt and blue tie. He should sit next to my boss #1 who is wearing a blue shirt and red tie. I should sit next to him, because I’m wearing a red top and black sweater. And then my boss #3 would be next to me, because he’s wearing a black shirt. Yes. Crazy.

Well, yesterday, my bosses were in a lengthy conversation about the floor remodel at one of the stores with the facilities manager, and my mind started to wander. So, I started my color habit. All of a sudden, my boss #3 says “Felicia, what are you doing? Your head is just quickly darting from person to person.” I immediately turned bright red and confessed. “I was observing the colors everyone’s wearing. Three of you are wearing blue, and the only two girls at the table are wearing red.” That’s all I could confess to.

What got me was that yes, they laughed, but they did not seem shocked. Not the slightest. I mean, no, I didn’t tell them the full weirdness going on in my head, that I should be sitting between boss #1 and boss #3 for color continuity. Honestly, I think they appreciate my weirdness, because it makes the day fun. If you have fun at work, well, you’re not really working. I also think it’s because they, too, have a little bit of weird in them as well. Trust me, I spend half of my meetings in stitches with what boss #1 and #3 blurt out on a constant basis. In all practicality, I could write a sitcom called “My Four Bosses.” Really, I do have four bosses. And they are awesome.

So yeah, embrace your weirdness. It makes people smile. Smile means happy, and happy means a better outlook and a better world. Embrace it!

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Book Review: Bang (Visions #2) by Lisa McMann

Spoilers Abound – You have been warned

I was looking forward to this book since I read the first one on it’s book birthday back in January. Like the first book, it was a quick read for me, about four hours with some breaks interspersed. I was expecting it to be just like the first, but this time from Sawyers. They’d hash out the visions, solve the puzzle and save the day. My expectations were right on. There was nothing crazy, mind-bending or heart-wrenching. Nothing that would keep me up all night pondering the weird things or ripping up a box of tissues (like Hunger Games) It was a safe read, like watching a Disney channel movie, and I’m okay with that.

What I enjoyed about this book most was the first-person narrative. I love (love, love, love) well done inner monologues. Ones that don’t come off as constant angst and whining. Julia oozed her full personality in the first person perspective – completely unlike most first-person cookie cutter personalities from book to book (I felt that way about Hush, Hush). Jules created lists in her head periodically to analyzes her situation and added “Dot-com” in her head to the ends of things that had dirty connotations (which did get annoying after the third or fourth time). Regardless, her personality was obvious, and, though predictable, was still raw, energetic, and had a clear characterization.

However, I did feel like McMann was trying to push this too much into the romance genre. That’s the main reason this book got 4 stars from me instead of 5. I didn’t care how hot and bothered she got around Sawyer or that she could feel his bulge against her. She’d been dating him for just a handful of weeks by that point and barely seeing him for 5 minutes at a time. I wished the relationship played more relaxed and as a second note, like Cable & Janie from the Wake trilogy.

Another thing that bothered me was the sudden flash and death of the most interesting part of the whole book: a huge clue that her father is suffering from visions too. She’s picked up (or rather dragged from) the library by her crazy father and realizes the similarity in mannerisms between their driving habits when she was being overloaded by her visions. WHY – For all that is good and holy – WHY did she not say something?! Her anger at her father could not have been so potent that she couldn’t have the biggest secret of her life solved right there. She’s started to suspect it since the first book, and that was the biggest clue she had. She could have easily said something snarky if she wanted to be condescending by saying something like “you’re driving like you can’t see in the mirror. Maybe you’re seeing things.” If I had noticed something tragically wrong with my parent, no matter how angry, that would get shelved pretty quickly. Especially something that is similarly plaguing me.

I do think her suspicions are correct – that her father is also seeing visions. Is he seeing the same one for years? Or is he not solving his visions so he keeps getting new ones? And did the father really have an affair, or do the Angottis and Demarcos share more than just sauces… like mental disorders, maybe? Or is sawyer a half brother (please, no. Let me be wrong on that. I had my fill of pretend incest with Mortal Instruments.) I don’t know if I buy the whole contagious visions thing. But if that were true, I think Ben (aka, FINALLY Trey has a love interest. Yay Trey!) will be the next to see things. I’m anxiously awaiting the next book. Think it’ll be called Boom?

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Video Games and New Big-Girl Panties

When I was thirteen years old, I was immersed in a little video game called Chrono Cross. Perhaps you’ve heard of it? Well, I was so excited; I was close to the end and well past the halfway point. I remember crossing over into the other dimension and getting through the futuristic city.

What made this game sweeter was that was going to be the first to beat a game in my household before my Nintendo-obsessed younger brother. Victory! Except… he deleted my game. Yep. Completely erased it. He wanted to beat it first, and he did. Then I did something completely bonkers. I never played the game again.

All those hours I spent getting my team together, looking in hidden crevices for bonus items and humorous character interactions, downing bosses and progressing through the story line. It had all been stolen from me. It made absolutely no sense to me at the time to do it all over again. The second time would just be a rush job to catch up to where I left off, and I would miss a lot of the various extra parts of the game I had done already. Surely, my second run would not live up to the first, so I cut my losses and called it a day.

I realized today that my blog suffered the same fate. If you’re not familiar with my last post (which was way too long ago), here’s a short recap: I had a blog built into a portfolio site. I got a job, no longer needed the portfolio site and let it die to save money. Went to start free blog. All previous blog content with old blog vanished.

So here I am, just like in the game, back at square one. It hurts, like I’m missing a piece of my heart. I had many great posts, observations about my budding writer self, my writing and scraps of poetry, none of which I can recover. It wasn’t until today that I realized the funk I’d been stewing in over my blog was the very same that I felt after losing Chrono Cross. I’d even go so far as to say that it’s a form of pouting.

No. I’m not going to let my blog go over hard feelings. Once I made that connection, I realized that I needed to put my big-girl panties on and just. move. on. I can’t get my old blog back. Maybe I can rewrite the exceptionally few posts that I do remember. But whether or not I do or don’t shouldn’t stop me from making my blog into something new.

New. New seems to be the name of the game for me right now. I’ve been in my new apartment for 3 weeks now. I finished my first novel and am moving into the scary and exhilarating query phase. NaNoWriMo is coming up, and I have a complete set of characters and plot to work with that I’ve been ruminating on for months now. I failed NaNoWriMo last year, but that wont happen this year. New is what the blog should be.

So, cheers, y’all (I might be a New Yorker, but I grew up with a step-dad from Georgia – I’m allowed) on a new blog for a new direction in my life.

 

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