And so you’re back/from outer space…

I Will Survive - Cake

It’s been more than a year since I last posted and then abandoned the wordpress suburbs for the new and wild jungles of tumblr. While the safari was fun, tumblr (for me at least)  is not suitable for long form text. You can see a semi-successful attempt here at the travel blog. Which in reality is a photo travel blog or more specifically a food photo travel blog. In the course of my recent travels, one of the many things I have learned is that the wifi connection is never as good as you hope and uploading photos or posting long text is a time suck. And so with my handy little tumblr app, it was easier to take and post photos all on my iphone with little commentary. Looking back at the France trip and now the South East Asia trip I almost prefer the simplicity of a single photo and caption. For me the minimalism evokes greater sensory recall. Pour moi ca marche.

But now I have come back to wordpress. I actually lost the blog; I forgot the name and hadn’t bookmarked the login. In finding it again I’ve reread old posts and have decided they weren’t all that bad. It’s strange that I’m in a completely different place than that girl of a year ago but I still have this need to collect my internet findings. I attempted to do that at tumblr but all it is a smattering of images on a page. Here the minimalism doesn’t work for me and I feel that this presentation of my curation requires more context. And so I’m thinking of reviving the blog. Yes, this one. I suppose tumblr can act as a sort of farm team. ps. I’ve changed the name from wtfalia to the more classic sounding Arts & Crafts & Internet.

So what’s new in alia world? Well lots but for now I only give you one. I am crazy obsessed with this song. It is the theoretical love child of Peter Gabriel and Fleetwood Mac if that child was born in Belgium and grew up in Australia. I am also into guest artist Kimbra’s new album Vows. Specifically; Settle Down and Cameo Lover (check out those music videos too! Artsy!).

Also (ha! I lied. I give you two!) since I’ve found my library card I’ve been reading comics again. I will probably write a post about The Fountain on its own because I think it has some interesting aspects about storytelling and filmmaking. For now please enjoy Friends With Boys by Faith Erin Hicks (creator of Demonology 101, a nice cross between Buffy and Harry Potter and one of the first webcomics I ever read) and the current run of three panel comics that Warren Ellis is running on his blog. Also: Annie Wu.

 

21 Days and Travels

Oh hi blog! How’s it going? I didn’t see you there. It has certainly been more than 20 days. My bad. This is what I started writing on the 21st day:

And so it is the twenty first day. I didn’t quite make my deadline but – like spilled milk – there’s no point in crying about it. So, after all that talk about tumblrs and not having something to say I’d decide to keep the blog as it is (albeit with a new layout). Now without the pressure of readings and essays I can find more time to simply write down my thoughts and internet findings.

Less than 24 hours ago I finished writing my final paper for my undergraduate degree. I’ve moved back home to the sounds of trains and dogs. I’m living out of boxes and sleep on a pullout. So feelings of triumph aren’t really flowing. It’s not at all as glum as I make it sound but I’m surprised I feel no different. I was hoping for elation or relief or at least accomplishment. Maybe those feelings come at convocation but I may not be able to go to mine. I really shouldn’t be anything but ecstatic. I’m going to France.

And

Boston.

Real Tea Party

Chicago:

So clearly I was on the path to continuing this blog but – as per usual – failing to flesh out my ideas clearly and on time. I’ve enjoyed this little experiment in my last semester of my last year. But for some reason I feel the need to move on. Thus, this is the end of this venture as I move to a tumblr blog for my France adventures. Au bientot.

Lies! (rebellion)?

I totally lied! It has been more than twenty days. Blogging promise fail. Tomorrow is the first day of my post-grad internships and last week was moving the majority of my life from London back to Toronto. I’m living out of boxes in my own home. It’s odd. Anyway more exciting things to come in the future. I started writing a big post but life got in the way. It will definitely be published after this post and is all about travel. Fun, yes?

Also, in the past week I’ve been to the dentist, doctors, optometrist and chiropractor. I have to get all my check ups before I’m no longer covered on my parent’s life insurance. Note to self: find job with benefits. At the optometrist I’ve learned that I have ‘steep’ eyeballs. This means specialized contacts. Hurray for me! My brother thinks I should just get laser eyes (lasik) but I kind of like my glasses. It may be more expensive but I like sometimes wearing glasses and sometimes wearing contacts. In the end I may not have a choice. We’ll see…

Eddy was announced a few days ago. It captures twitter data and publishes it possibly by data visuals. This could be interesting. Related: the Library of Congress will now archive tweets. Tweets are seemingly becoming more permanent or at least less fleeting.

Leonard Nimoy does photography.

Hiatus

Instead of letting my hiatus go unmentioned, I thought I’d officially announce it. This is – after all – a blog and if you can’t write about the innate details of your life what are you really doing? Might was well have a tumblr. Well actually, the more I look at tumblr the more I think it can be more than a web app for posting pictures of awesome sharks or lazertits. And so like my compatriot, Heather, I will most likely be moving this song and dance over to tumblr at the end of the hiatus (approximately 20 days from now. I swears). I don’t think it’s a matter of my generation and these times being ADD or having short attention spans (although those do exis-SQUIRREL) but rather more lateral curating type activity being encouraged because it is more social and accessible. Anyone can hyperlink but not everyone can right a good blog post.

On a separate note: high-school-blogging-me would transfer all these posts to the new tumblr but now-blogging-me probably won’t. I don’t see too much value in what I’ve written or at least enough to spend the trouble of porting them over. I was a little stumped at why my first blogging attempts of my youth were better than this current incarnation powered by my post-secondary brain. But I now think that it is analogous to documentary film making: no matter the subject, if you feel like you have something to say, the end product can be potentially really interesting. The content of my high school blog wasn’t unique or special but when writing it I thought I had something to say and it came through the writing. Here I don’t feel I have anything unique or special to say. It’s the same problem I have with academic debate or writing. I often don’t say anything because I can’t think of something to say that I feel isn’t already obvious. Recently, I’ve learned that I should just say things I think are obvious because they may not be obvious to others. So in round II of this blog (which may or may not go through a name change. I haven’t really decided yet) I will write with purpose, with intention, with the feeling that I have something to say. Because I want to show you what I’ve found.

Here are some topics that I had planned on writing full posts but will probably be lost to time:

-Blue Ribbons (I first noticed them at the Oscars which led me to the wikipedia page and it’s disambiguation. I then wanted to talk about the pluralism of cultural symbols.)

-post-post-modernism-modernism (Bruce Sterling and William Gibson are taking about these times as being atemporal. Adbusters recently declare this era to be Ultra-modern. This topic eventually was turned into an artist response for my contemporary art elective).

-Media Literacy (this topic will be turned into a vlog/video for my theory and history of broadcasting class. I wanted to talk about live events (such as Ann Coulter coming to my campus), twitter and mis/disinformation. Also what Photoshop CS5 means).

I just downloaded and am about to enjoy Night of 140 Tweets. Because I am apparently a comedy geek I recognized almost all the performers (including Jesse and Jordan from Sound of Young America, Nick Kroll and Alex Blagg). Also, Architecture for Humanity is a really cool organization (their TEDtalk is pretty bomb) and believe the whole $3 of the itunes download goes to Haiti.

I have recently been obsessed with three songs; two music videos and one uploaded track:

Kelis – Acapella

Jenny Wilson – Like a Fading Rainbow

Nabiha – You

Bonobo just released a new album. I’m pretty excited to hear what it sounds like. His last album was used as the soundtrack for jPod which is in the top five of my favourite shows that get cancelled after one season (Hi Clone High and Firefly! Shoutouts to Carnivale and Dead Like Me). I’ve also been listening to the new Yeasayer album like it’s a soothing balm for my terrible, terrible (but definitely metaphorical) stress rash.

I hate the new YouTube layout. Not only because the minimalism design fail but what it means for communities and vloggers. Maybe they’ll all move over to vimeo?

Oh look, a tumblr-like post….

ghostbike

Click me to go to ghostbikes.org

Apparently, I’m in self destruct mode. One would think that could potentially mean more or better blog posts but alas no. Instead, I publish this post anyway without any relevant or useful commentary. Exactly the opposite of what I declared the in last post. Everyone is a hypocrite but it’s just so disappointing when you exhibit the attributes and exemplify the practice so clearly. Hear is to next week. Perhaps better or perhaps worse. Definitely less emo. Not as truncated.

addendum/update: I think the interesting stuff on this blog so far has mostly been the meta. The goal is still the same in posting things I find interesting and talking about them. But I think there’s a reason why personal blogs have remained popular: it’s the glimpse into the slice of life that inspires comedy or revelation. It inspires something interesting and entertaining. I don’t feel I can really write about my life right now because I don’t find it particularly interesting. It’s the typical fourth year last semester bullshit. The frustration and irritation of continued procrastination. The not wanting to be here but not wanting to go. There are no new elements in my life. I realize these – good or bad – will come soon enough but I’m forcing myself into a rut that’s becoming self destructive. I skipped class and haven’t been handing in work. It’s not the end of the world but it’s not really me. Procrastinating, yes. Completely ignoring responsibility, no. I need to reboot or jumpstart myself. I just can’t think of a practical answer. Well, on the positive side this is no longer a tumblr-like post. Need to fulfill meaningless criteria? Check.