Monday, February 24, 2014

I've been thinking melancholy songs lately

This is the song I want to play for the musician's jam next month, if I can make it that weekend.

For the technically curious: I sang it and played simultaneously on my new-to-me Washburn guitar, recording it on my Samsung Galaxy SII phone using the app PCM Recorder and the built-in mic. Did no post-recording manipulation, as I don't really have the programs for that.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Congrats, Abby, on writing comment #1,400

If my Blogger comment dashboard has any semblance of accuracy -- and there's no guarantee it does -- my beloved sister Abby was the author of comment #1,400 on this blog when she wrote the inaugural reply to Compendium #53.

For this accomplishment, she gets a blog post dedicated to her glasses!

I hereby dedicate this blog post to Abby's glasses. Because she'd have a bit of trouble driving without them. And we can't have her stranded where she can't visit me, now, can we?


Sunday, February 16, 2014

Compendium of Links #53

I have not slept well all week. Last night I think I slept for maybe 45 minutes, woke up, and then proceeded to spend the next 6 hours trying to go back to sleep. However, today's nap and tonight's sleep will probably set me back to rights.

In the meantime, you may entertain and inform yourself with the following random links!

Annoying Things in Worship Songs - you know, like being simplistic, repeating endlessly... oh wait...

Buy a beard! Or a mustache! You can even get a two-part beard that looks like ram's horns.

To Dwell in Possibilities - A friend o' mine started a blog geared toward young single Christian gals. I'm looking forward to reading it.

Unknown mathematician proves elusive property of prime numbers - "Written by a mathematician virtually unknown to the experts in his field — a 50-something lecturer at the University of New Hampshire named Yitang Zhang — the paper claimed to have taken a huge step forward in understanding one of mathematics’ oldest problems, the twin primes conjecture."

On Buzzfeed: Which Jane Austen heroine are you? A few apparently silly questions claim to give you an accurate description. I ended up with Elinor Dashwood - "You’re mature and know when to be serious, but you also have a snarky sense of humour that makes you fun to be around. You’re creative and artistic, and appreciate pretty things. You’re a great listener and really good at keeping secrets, which means you’re a fabulous best friend." Well then.

Also on Buzzfeed (via my sis): 26 reasons babies are pretty much just tiny drunk adults!

Russell Brand reflects on a decade of fighting drug addiction - "Even if it began as a timid glass of chardonnay on a ponce's yacht, it would end with me necking the bottle, swimming to shore and sprinting to Bethnal Green in search of a crack house. I look to drugs and booze to fill up a hole in me; unchecked, the call of the wild is too strong. I still survey streets for signs of the subterranean escapes that used to provide my sanctuary. I still eye the shuffling subclass of junkies and dealers, invisibly gliding between doorways through the gutters. I see that dereliction can survive in opulence; the abundantly wealthy with destitution in their stare."

In case you were curious to know what it takes to get yourself your first U.S. passport, here's your answer! Assuming, of course, that you are a U.S. citizen.

Wolfram|Alpha answers your most pressing questions about your use of Facebook - including how your Facebook friends are connected to each other, their demographics, and of course, the words you use the most in your status updates:

And for your closing video, audio play of the original Cups song.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Review: Real Men Don't Text: A New Approach to Dating

Real Men Don't Text: A New Approach to Dating
Real Men Don't Text: A New Approach to Dating by Ruthie Dean

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I'm not part of the notorious "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" camp of Christian non-daters. But I'll admit, it's hard to find solid ground where I can date with a clean conscience, given my understanding of being called to Christlikeness, but without the legalism. And how in the world do you find a guy willing to do the same?

A friend put me onto this book on the day the Kindle version was free. I figured, why not? I was pleasantly surprised to read some advice from a woman who didn't pretend she'd done it all right. In fact, a lot of the advice comes from having first done everything wrong -- and the bits her husband adds provide valuable clarity from the male perspective. Drawing on those experiences, sociological research and biblical morals (it's written primarily for women who are Christian or Jewish), she distills her advice into concrete do's (and don'ts), with clear and specific examples and a dose of "do this 'cause it works, not just 'cause I say so" ... which for a gal like me, who's unsure how to date well, is gold. For the record, there's a lot in here a guy may benefit from learning, as well -- if only because of the glimpse it provides men into the feminine psyche!

Gems like this keep you laughing through much of the book:

"KEEP ME UPDATED?! I read his last sentence at least nine hundred times and copied and pasted his message into an email to ten friends begging them to tell me "WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?" --in all caps, mind you. I remember reviewing over and over that he wrote "Hi, Ruthie" with no exclamation point, which clearly meant he wasn't excited after writing my name -- which could only translate that he just wasn't that into me. ..."

Spoiler (well, not really): The guy emailing that to her? She ended up marrying him.

I don't recommend it without reservation. Only about five books exist which I would. There are obviously situations in which breaking her rules is about the wisest thing to do -- and there always will be. But the author does an excellent job explaining the whys behind the hows so it's easier to discern when the hows don't necessarily apply. And for someone wondering how to date "in the world of texting, Twitter crushes and online dating," it's an easy read with a lot of food for thought -- and probably a good kick in the pants for some of us gals to build our confidence and shore up our identity instead of trying to find it in relationship with a guy.

View all my reviews

Saturday, February 08, 2014

Compendium of Links #52: Video edition

I spent most of this week not sleeping well. Whether I just couldn't fall asleep until 2 a.m., or woke up earlier than I wanted to, or couldn't nap... it was just tiring. I finally got something close to eight hours last night, I think. And man, I feel far more awake this morning than I have for some time.

For this edition of the Compendium I'll merely have videos, since I've amassed several! Most of them are fun ones with a serious one or two mixed in. (Actually, looks like it's just one serious video.)

What does it look like when you mix paint with an audio speaker?

School administrators pretend they're Queen to cancel school.

HAHA! A while back I saw a video that made fun of stuff Christians in general say (or a lot of Christian guys). This one's for the gals.

Serious video: Inverting men's/women's experiences with sexist treatment. Or should I say, disrespectful treatment. Because that is the problem: Men who act the way the women behave in this video are sinning against their fellow human beings. (Notice: Trigger warning.)

A British TV show makes fun of Pride and Prejudice and it is hilarious! (Mom, there's an F-word.)

The folks from Bad Lip Reading bring us the NFL... again. And they don't disappoint! I laugh every time I watch this.

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Being an INTP part 2: When acquaintances get married and you're nowhere near it

A question has been running through my mind the last several days, or months or years: Are some people's personalities simply less likely ever to fall in love?

I wonder this because in the cursory reading I've done about those with my personality type (which I'm fairly certain is conveyed by the Myers-Briggs letters INTP) I've seen that people with these characteristics tend not to do relationships easily (or well). Friendships are hard enough, but romantic relationships tax us such that sometimes we wonder whether they're worth bothering about at all (as one website notes).

I firmly believe I have never been "in love" and I sometimes doubt if I'm even capable of that kind of love... and it's rather disheartening. Because at the same time, I feel (not think, feel) that a committed romantic relationship constitutes an emotional dimension I am completely ignorant of. And if I ever do fall in love, it'll be completely new territory... I'm slightly afraid of how I might react.

Now back to your regularly scheduled commentary on links and small-town living. Carry on. :)