Wednesday, April 28, 2010

What Doubt?

I generally don't allow myself to get worked up over politics, especially involving school. But there is just something about the idea of cutting any sports team that makes me aggravated over the stupidity of such an idea.
Sports for me have always been a huge part of my life. From recreational to high school varsity, when it comes to competition, another part of me comes alive. I have benefited from the camaraderie of triumphs and defeats, the pain and successes of effort, and the desire to do our best.
The way I see it, sports are important for high schools and should remain a vital part and not cut as budgets are lowered. In many schools, spirit and morale is low, with athletics, it gives many students a viable way to show support for their school, by both watching and participating. When you take away a factor that connects people you wouldn't see anywhere else, the men and women of the future will turn out different.
It'll be a sad day when a sport is cut because it can not be afforded and I hope that it won't ever happen, but it seems that school boards across the nation fail to see the true benefits of athletics to the students in their schools.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Give A Teen A Cookie...

In effect, giving teenagers a video camera can sometimes create interesting situations. Some may allow creativity to soar, while others use pure stupidity to captivate. When you give me a camera, I curse the ability to capture movement and would rather take stills. Of course, give Corin a camera, and pair him up with Aaron, Austin, and myself, and you can expect to find a mixture of art, comedy, and pure action.
Here I present a scene from the documentary we are filming for AP English Language and Composition included with a little commentary on the action scene:

Who knows how well this will turn out in the end, all I can guess is that it'll be interesting to say the least.

Friday, April 23, 2010

This Is How We Do It

I find it amusing that many people do not appreciate lifeguards enough. Considering how its their job to keep the patrons of the pool safe, lifeguards have to do what they have to do.
While many people see life guarding as simply sitting on a chair for several hours, the job entails much more than that. Even the part of the job that is sitting in a chair, isn't just aimlessly looking at the people swimming.
Often, what happens is that lifeguards are the janitorial staff at the pool as well. They tend to be required to pick up the mess left by people, including wet food which sticks to concrete. The bathrooms that rushed kids use, are cleaned by the lifeguards who tend to spend many hours outside in one day. In essence, lifeguards have to maintain the pool themselves, and for the ones that are underpaid for their duties, they can become easily frustrated, and that sadly is taken out on the patron.
In the most rigorously managed pools, lifeguards are constantly trained to make sure no error occurs in case of emergency. This is time out of a lifeguards day to make sure they will be able to save a patrons life.
Of course, there are times when a lifeguard needlessly acts strict. A kid running to the bathroom isn't just seen as a blatant violation of pool rules, but possibly a kid with a traumatic head injury. Children horse playing isn't just simple splashing, but possibly an unconscious kid who may have permanent brain damage.
Lifeguards do enjoy having fun, but at a pool, anything that happens can lead to something a whole lot worse. In my opinion, while I do know CPR and First-Aid, I don't want to ever have to use it.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Rain on his Parade for a Change

When I think of rain, I tend to think of two opposite fronts. On one side, there is the peaceful and revitalization side of it, and at the other end of the spectrum is the destructiveness of rain.
I'm not to sure which side I like more. Like any argument, both sides bring their merits to the table.
For one, a nice small rain brings relaxation, a simple excuse to just stay in and take a break from it all. Even if you need to go outside, the slight breeze feels nice and refreshes one. The light rain allows for chivalry to take place, for a guy to sacrifice his coat doing a nice deed for his lady friend while being no big deal for him. Even the classic jacket over a small puddle would be no bother. Even a sense of romance can bloom from that, even though commonly left to film and television.
On the other hand, beauty can lie in destruction. With pouring rain can come the awe-inspiring power of lighting. Although believed to never strike in the same place twice, there is no actual need for it to do so, as whatever it hits suffers permanent damage. The wind of a large storm can cause tremendous damage as well, pretty much being a storms arm, throwing objects through glass.
Even in the end, something as simple as a rainbow can be expected and through it all I find it impressive that it can bring life or death, you've just got wait till the clouds clear to see the end result.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Cruising On Up?

I just took a look at my goal list before graduation and I seem to now have a problem with it. Its not like all the tasks on the list are hard, in fact, I know I'm capable of doing all of them and thats what seems to be the problem.
As of right now, I feel extremely content with where I'm at, it seems like I could live the way I am right now, for a really long time. In fact, I wouldn't give any of it up. But the problem lies in complacency. How do I know when the turbulent waters will be coming when there are none around? For all I know, life will come crashing down tomorrow and I'll be unequipped for it. I've lived my life as an observer, someone who just gathers data, but now its like I'm a field agent, up in the front lines, yet no one else knows that things have changed, that their is another person who in the action. They don't realize that I in the midst of it all.
Whats wrong with that is the fact that while I'm busy living life, the rules will have changed without me knowing. In fact, I heard somewhere that according to something along the lines of quantum theory that merely observing an experiment changes its outcome. Will the fact I'm no longer observing life change its outcome? I guess I'll just have to enjoy this amazing distraction and I won't have a problem with that.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

I Once Knew A Teacher

There is a statement by the name of Murphy's law. It goes, whatever can go wrong, will go wrong. Of course I know this to not be pure fact. Although in my life there have been rough spots, plenty of fine sailing has occurred without a hitch. This of course relates in no way to the possibility of a jinx, despite the fact superstitions are somewhat rooted in reality.
Murphy's law does seem to take a more powerful truth in my life as a military brat. Many possible problems can arise as there is no way to truly know what will happen in your parents lives, if they'll be deployed, or if there ranking officer will say no to those couple days he or she will need to take you on a camping trip.
The thing that I like the most about Murphy's law is the exaggeration. There will always be the chance that things will go great. In fact, Murphy's law seems to state that eventually things will go wrong, for something to be perfect is impossible. Thats what scares me, that when something is going great, how will you know the moment where it all crumbles. Anyways, I guess I'll just have to enjoy life until that moment comes, and hope it never does.

Friday, April 16, 2010

11:59 P.M.

On occasion I've come to the point where poetry has helped me occupy my mind. Whilst simply writing barely causes any distraction, poetry requires me to think, you choose the right words to convey what I want. Where rambling tends to be common in my writing, I have to be more careful with poetry.
I really like haiku because they are really simplistic in form yet the best haiku can take time to refine or mere moments to create. A basic pattern of five, seven, five is so mindbogglingly easy yet to have to cut out one syllable to form the poem can create chaos. It sometimes requires the writer to know the English language to find the best grouping of words.
Although I don't write many, or ever, I come up with them at random times on any sort of topic. Lately though, my mind has been pretty occupied. Sometimes it comes to the point where my eyes freeze and my mind goes blank till the occupation somehow leaves my mind. The simplest task becomes difficult as I get bored, my mind returns.
Well, the other night I was lying awake as my mind searched for the right words. I somehow came up with this:

Minute till midnight
I just can not get to sleep
You're still on my mind

I know it isn't perfect, the words themselves pertain to between proper and common dialectical English. I wish I could make it flow better but I haven't been able to form the words right, but overall, its the expression that matters most.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Silence of the Lambs

Silence is intriguing. To know the presence of another in the vicinity yet to hear no sound grips at ones mental well being.
I imagine being deaf to be something like being in a swimming pool at the bottom of the deep end. You can look up and see people above you moving around, the landing of water as it splashes down. You can see the jets of water being pumped into the pool. While all this action occurs, no sound can be heard. You're left alone purely to your thoughts and a simple whisper in your head becomes a shout.
This is why I feel sort of afraid of the AP exams and the SATs. While other standardized tests held less weight, and people cared less, the participants taking these tests know the huge significance of them. While people may have made jokes before, the crowds are bound to be more serious as they chooses to take these tests, even paying money. They will all want to pass these tests, and while attempting, chances are they won't make a peep. If I can barely sit still during a regular test, how will I survive the deafening silence for several hours?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Thats What She Said

You truly know its a good omen of a great day to come when on a boat with plenty of new sailors, that you enter your slip perfectly without any trouble placing lines.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Call to Arms

As a military brat, I've always had an expected sense of being a good person by doing right and helping others. With scouting as a young child, it was a great way to cultivate that feeling while my parents could be involved and help out by guiding me. Of course after reaching Wolf, a lack of participation, common to overseas troops, scouting was sidelined. When in Sigonella, I was unable to continue my way into Bear as sports were a very important part of my life. After discovering that fellow classmates that were friends, were Boy Scouts in the seventh grade, I convinced my parents to let me join up and I feel that was an important decision in my life.
The issue that generally arose from scouting was my indifference to completing the various requirements to rise a rank. It was not that I didn't like to do the various activities or learn skills, but the fact that I felt no need to prove my capabilities. Following a long period of time, I finally did rank up, yet I was, so I think, already knowledgeably in various scouting fields and an able leader. After the quick movement from Tenderfoot to First Class, I became the elected Senior Patrol Leader. Despite the Troop in a slump, we ended up completed what we set out to do, and all the younger scouts learned well and enjoyed what we did. But what was also important about this aspect of my life was my Father. Although I did like doing things on my own, my Dad being at scouts was more as him being any other adult leader, he let me do my tasks on my own while offering the assistance and guidance as needed. I was able to grow up while knowing that this was something we had in common, as I was not much of a successful athlete.
Sadly it came to an end, although I was a successful scout and a great leader, the Navy required my dad to spend his next tour on sea duty requiring our family to move once again. Since Boy Scouts tends to be structured where those who've been with the troop longer are more likely to be elected to positions, I saw no way to actually make Eagle Scout. I simply just decided to not join a new troop and end my scouting era.
After a year away from scouting, a friend reintroduced a fabled area of scouting. While Venturing did seem a viable option, I did not know Sea Scouts to be a successful area as what would be my local council did not have a ship. A friend from my school and coworker introduced me to a ship that wasn't too far away but was in a different council, since she knew I just joined the schools sailing team, she felt I would like Sea Scouts as well. Due to a natural disposition towards trying beyond my bounds, the ability to drive myself made it easier to become active, and the more I active I've become the more I've enjoyed it. Sea Scouting became more accessible without the need for a ride. The most beneficial part of Sea Scouting is the fact that a variety of sources, whether it be the different levels of education or the different genders or different experiences, Sea Scouts, and Venturing allows for a greater scouting experience than a troop would. Activities including other ships and crews brings forth a whole different set of rules to the table. Creative and unique ideas are brought forth as most of the scouts realize that these are people you won't see much of ever again making thought processes more experimental. The climatic environment allows for one to realize that you have one life, and you've got to be willing to put yourself out there to be successful.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Sound of Art

After some discussion maybe three or so weeks ago, a friend Corin in my English class, figured out at who was better at more things. This talk took a huge chunk of time, and we did not finish the work, but either way, some progression was made. Overall we decided that when it comes to generalizations, he was better academically and I took the cake when it comes to athletics and art. Sometime after, I came to realize, when talking to another friend, Sarah, that we didn't figure who would be better at music. Since Sarah knew both of us, I unofficially decided and told her so that she was the better musician.
A few days ago while talking to Sarah, she told me she was having someone design her tattoo when she could get one, along the lines of musical notes and the word hallelujah. Since I haven't worked on a piece in a while, I chose to make my own rendition of what I would make it look like.

The instrument is the Baritone, which in fact would be a bit more elongated but I wasn't able to draw it entirely correct since I have not seen one up close. The music is of the song, Hallelujah by Rufus Wainwright but originally by Leonard Cohen , where the lyrics would be "goes like this, the fourth, the fifth, the minor falls, the major lift, the baffled king composing" then rather than finish the line, I put the beginning "Ha-lle-" and decided to cut into the next line. I personally like the image except for some issues since I penned over pencil making it look faded. I suppose that all I could do was give my best shot combining music and art.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Danger Alert

It has come to my attention recently that this recent warm weather is dangerous to me. Its not like I have massive allergies or some sort of aversion to the sun. In fact, my job entails me to work large hours outside at a pool surrounded by plenty of trees that aggravatingly shed pretty much into the pool. So in no way am I physically endangered. Nor am I wounded mentally by the fact that the heat bothers me since I do prefer cold winter weather.
Its not like I just got senioritis, since I feel like I've had it come the beginning of the school year. The two AP classes I'm taking have not exactly overwhelming but rather the tests as the teachers explained them at the start. The massive amount of preparation for one test has made me loose the effort I tend to take to a class, therefore my desire to excel has become a desire to get at least a B. With this loss of immense drive, all I yearn for is graduation.
Well, as the temperature increases, and my ability to drive myself places constantly remind me of this coming summer. That coupled with my senioritis makes me care less about the coming quarter of course work and AP exams and just want to cruise on by. This poses a problem as it seems I that will barely skim by with my desired 4.0 GPA for the year. It seems my only hope would be for a impossible weather change to lower temperatures, a little snow would be nice as well. Since that won't happen, I suppose its time to shape up, or I'll have to ship out.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Destruction of Craft

From a somewhat embarrassing misfortune, I discovered a large disappointment. I've known about the desperate situation art forms are in as society becomes streamlines everything and only the select few still appreciate art. I of course have taken part in the simplified art created by modern technology but it disappoints me more so when reduces his career based on a form of art into sufficient and quicker ways to make money.
Well, simply put, I made a huge mistake when I decided to trust habit as I made my way outside in the morning. Suffice to say, I grabbed the wrong set of car keys, the one without a house key on it while naturally locking the door knob lock before shutting it. Without a house key, I was stranded outside with no way back inside for a very long time. My only option required calling a locksmith to open the door.
For much of my life, I've enjoyed figuring out how things work. This fascination has fueled both a high amount of informational reading and hands on experience. Somewhere within my readings I found an article on the internet about lock picking. The basic actions are simple enough yet to successfully pick a lock, one must know the inner workings of the tumbler and the grace to unlock in correctly.
What disappointed me the most about this locksmith was the destruction of his craft. Rather than walk up and rather than pick the lock he pulled out two square inflatable bags similar to those used to check blood pressure. After placing the bags above and below the lock, the smith simply used a paint scraper like a credit card and opened the door. At first this might seem as a simpler way to do his job rather than pick the lock but the first thing the smith said when he arrived on the scene was a long the lines of lets see if we can at least save the lock, as if he was gonna break the lock if unable to open it with the paint scraper.
In the end, I was disappointed by the absence of the lock picking, the one thing I was looking forward to during the three hour wait. As the world continues its journey into a world of pure efficiency, it seems art forms will be sacrificed as a result.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Cut Into Little Pieces

I decided that today, considering how sunny the weather has been lately, that I would go out and take advantage of it by practicing my photography skills. Another activity that I do occasionally enjoy alongside scenery photography, is photo editing. So using, here comes a set of my photos.

This a sweet Mustang I found upon my photographic journey, especially since its a black GT. I originally was gonna make the tree in the background that was pink be the only think in color, but I felt the blue tint of the Mustang looked a whole lot cooler.

This shot I barely got, I was looking at something else when I heard the two birds collide, and I turned fast enough with my finger on the shutter button before they landed, didn't even see either fly afterwards. I like the medium pencil sketch effect, plus the invert makes it look like a grainy film reel.

I was sitting in the car when I got the idea to take a picture of the side view mirror which in its view had two trucks as well as the house. I've always loved the neon effect, especially when coupled with the black and white layer before, but with the red door, garage door and window panels, the red seems to fit well.

This was one of the two birds in the flying picture beforehand when he was crossing the street. I used two different effects for this one, the first was called posterize which simply used a set number of colors and removes the rest. The second was 1960s which when coupled together with posterize makes the picture seem like something sort of out of a old magazine with an article about the Vietnam war.
Overall, although this may not be considered true art, I feel that the more I practice, the better I become at photography, even maybe one day I'll be really good at it, but for now, all I can do is practice. And in the end, I think practicing my skills was a good way to spend the day.

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Clap

Today, in my AP English class, after the final test was complete, I decided to try and start a slow clap. Although I had a near perfect progression, it did not catch on. Following some discussion about a friend's issue, a romantic one, a fellow participant and I decided that the problem would be resolved simply by a kiss at the end of the day which make the "issued" one's romantic issue leave their partner and go for our friend. As if stolen from my head, the fellow discussion participant who agreed with me said that they will be there at the location, and would start a slow clap but even then, could it be possible to complete such a feat. And would I just be Kyle and fail to rise to the occasion while letting Erick steal my thunder (Not Another Teen Movie reference)?
The slow clap has such a powerful effect, yet it has one fatal flaw, it only truly works in moves and television, locations where the perfect situation for a slow clap ever occur. The moment in teenage oriented films where the opportunity for a slow clap arises requires an action out of the ordinary that most high school students are too fearful to do. Even in a typical high school, generally no one has any clue as to what exactly is happening and it is highly unlikely a slow clap will start or even catch on. The moment itself is too short and therefore requires a keen to catch it and start a clap correctly or it would seem messed up and be ignored. Possibly the only way to have a successful slow clap would be to have a predetermined starter along with a dispersed group of people knowledgeable of the upcoming moment, in fact, the moment would have to have both people knowing what is about to happen to prevent any sort of variable or rejection. If a rejection occurs, the slow clap would fail and the clapper may appear to be an idiot of sorts. With the slow clap having way to many fallible components, it shall forever be left in the realm of film and television.
In the end, after a long day of anticipation, nothing came of the discussion. As luck would have it, the friend's romantic interest seemed to be in better terms with their relationship partner. Therefore the friend lost the courage to act and has been pushed back a step in their quest. As it seems, the moment for the slow clap is elusive and even if found, it requires a midas touch of sorts to make it work right. And to my friend, if you're reading, your day will come.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Officially Unofficial

I decided that if I was gonna write about my life to graduation, that I should make a list of things to do before then. Mind you, the list is tentative, as time goes by, things will be added and others will scratched off. But the goal remains the same, to make this year the great, to live it to the fullest, to be successful in all my endeavors, and maybe, here and there, make some girls swoon at the sight of me all the while changing the world.

Some of the items are more difficult than others, and some seem to be broken up. When it comes to difficulty or length, it won't matter. What will matter is that I've see myself out to do something meaningful with my life.