Monday, March 23, 2015

winter's last gasp

I've been keeping busy! Perhaps a little too much drinking, but can ya blame me? Played some pool Sunday night, that oft frustrating hobby; a joy when done well, a bore otherwise. Saturday was a solidarity rally with the university of Toronto and York teaching assistants, and possibly the largest action I've had the pleasure of marching with. A bright and at times brisk day, and spirits were high. That night was an acquaintance's birthday, where I mostly kept my manners up and my drink down, an evening ending with me buying a box of fried chicken and falling asleep with my clothes on.

Friday night I participating in an open sparring event, wherein people of various fighting backgrounds went at it in a casual, non-competitive atmosphere. I fared well enough, and left with some bruises for my trouble, though I did catch a toe in the eye and someone's backfist to my chin. A good practice, and useful gauge against other martial arts misfits, as I think of them. Though it might be pushing my luck, I'd like to try again in a couple months.

I saw Merchants of Doubt the previous weekend and it's simply galling to see the evidence of trickery, of manipulation, of FUD that the climate change deniers have used to numb the minds of the populace and slow the actions of government. On the other hand, it was nice to see Jamy Ian Swiss get to show off his skills while educating on the big screen.

Have I more news for you? I've been using Timeful pretty heavily to kick my butt into gear, at least in terms of getting stuff done. Mostly this has been reading, flossing, and practicing piano but it's a start.  I suppose in the realm of the personal I have no news, but am heavily into trying to make news.

OH I forgot that I went to a nightclub to meet some woman I met on-line. I mean, there's not much to tell, what with a noisy club not being particular suited to genuinely getting to know someone. But it was an adventure, of sorts at least.

Friday, March 13, 2015

board game jam 4

Another year, another Board Game Jam. This was the fourth appearance for Jenning and me, and I have to say it felt like our weakest attempt. Not that we didn't try, but I was not happy with what we came up with, a derivative of many other popular, more fun worker placement games. I suppose not every year can be a great success in creativity. The event itself was much the same as last year -- same workshop space at George Brown College, same party space at Mill Street Brew Pub, same format of introduction lesson, building and playtesting. The theme was "How do we know what we know?", which I probably put too much emphasis on. Thinking on it now, it makes sense to simply work on our previous unfinished works, which are otherwise sitting collecting dust on shelves, unplayed and forgotten for months and months.

It takes two to build a village
The weather has turned! And what a quick turn it was, spring kicking down signs left and right of winter. I've taken to riding a bicycle to work again, and hope to find some time to do so leisurely, maybe check out some of my routes. The highlight of my work day, really.

Attended another nerd nite, which are starting to grow on me. There was a talk on Celtic misconceptions, and a presentation by some Google employees that was actually really interesting, even if it felt a bit like a commercial. Hard to place my finger on what I felt lacking about them -- perhaps it's the lack of a greater critical analysis in these talks.

Tonight I meet up with friends to try one of those "escape the room" games. Here's to hoping our oxygen doesn't run out!

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

playing with video

I've been participating in an on-line course, Explore Filmmaking: from Script to Screen, and I feel like I've gotten quite a bit out of it. On top of having to think about how films are made, there have also been practical exercises, some of which I've had a blast with. For a lighting experiment I made this short video:


It came out a lot darker than I'd hoped, and the audio quality is lousy, but overall I'm happy with the results. I pretty much made do with the equipment available to me -- a desk lamp, a towel, and a battery-powered tea light. I'm impressed that I did it all on my iPhone 6! I'd no idea iMovie did so much. Here's a couple more videos I did on a lark (not for the course):




Well, I like them, although I suppose the cat one is the equivalent of me sharing a cheesy family video. Whatever dude! I had fun making them.