Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Thursdays Are Right Out

Writing on Thursday is not working for me either.  I volunteered to help coach the local High School Rugby club as it is just getting started.  That's all my "free" time on Thursday.
Penoan flag

I'm going to make this a quick post, but I wanted to introduce someone you our blogging community.  Her name is Zoso (I hope she forgives me, I think her last name is Volv├│odis-Lagenam Iratus-Phteris, but I could be wrong).  She lives in Chicago, but she emigrated from a small country called Penoa to the USA.  I would like her to share some of her native country's culture and history through interviews in the coming weeks.

She will likely say that she actually emigrated to the US from Canada.  In point of fact, her mother was expecting as they were coming from Penoa to America.  She went into labor when they had a layover in Canada.  They only stayed 24 hours before continuing on to the States, however Zoso maintains a duel citizenship, a fierce love of Hockey and all thing Canadian.

When I can get hold of her I will interview her and share her answers here.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Writing About Not Writing

Here it is, late on another Monday and I've not written my blog post yet.  I am writing about not writing, which is writing, but there is certainly some tautology there.  It seems a little like going back in time and killing your own grandfather.

I realized writing and posting both on Mondays is not a good idea.  I moved my writing day back to Thursday.  That didn't happen last Thursday, or Friday, or ...

I have made writing daily work.  It is a proven method for me, and plenty of other authors (or maybe I should just say authors).  Writing one day a week, or some days a week doesn't seem to work for me.

By the way, I have two interesting observations about the picture I used.  I think that's Hebrew on the keyboard.  I don't write or speak Hebrew, and please don't take it as a political statement.  I just found and like the picture.  It seemed appropriate for today's post.

The other observation is I found this picture on a blog called Dreaming On Paper.  I took it without permission (shh).  The date he posted it was 15 April 2013.  I had misread it and thought it said 2014.  It seemed strange that it should be posted tomorrow, but then it is tomorrow in some parts of the world already, and I thought it would be cool if I could post it with a date before the original date.  Unfortunately I eventually saw that it said 2013 and I eventually remembered that this is 2014.

Back to the writing part.  This is not an excuse, but more an observation on what works for me.

I am reminded of a small island in the Caribbean I visited once, well, by visited I saw it while messing around with Google Earth and what with all the pov pictures it's just like being there anyway.

The island is called San Vita, and is named after the patron saint of lost keys (remind you of a certain temple?).  Don't bother looking for it.  It is so small you'd never find it and anyway I pulled the Wikipedia article and sent a note to Google that it is fictitious.  I want to keep it all to myself.  It is just so adorable.

The native name for San Vita is Goinoware.  It was the name the inhabitants of nearby islands gave to the Spaniards when they first arrived.  It means, "What island, that one, oh we never go there, don't bother, it's a complete waste of time, and no fun at all."  Surprisingly efficient these native languages are, aren't they?

Back in the 1950s the CIA set it up as a Wicker Chair Monarchy.  It's similar to a Banana Republic, but instead of being fronted by the United Fruit Company this was the Amalgamated Patio Furniture Co.  It was headed by the King of Savings for years.

It's now an autocratic economy (everybody minds their own business) under a Liberal Dictatorship where everyone is at liberty to be a dictator to everyone else equally.

I think I may retire there someday.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Atlantis Rising

I have a "theory" about Atlantis.
Is that the temple of Biro, God of Lost Pens, on the far left?
pic courtesy of bermuda-triangle.org

Atlantis is the lost continent.  It stands to reason that if it is The LOST continent then it should be associated with lost things.

What I mean by, "associated" is that I envision temples to Lost Socks, Lost Keys, and Lost Glasses.  These would be great stone temples the glory of the ancient world where these lost things would just appear, filling the buildings from across time and space.

These must of necessity be transient locations for many of these things, thus the temples would be very active and lively places with keys popping in and then back out to return behind your sofa.  A temple might be blessed with the appearance of grandpa's horn-rim glasses only to lose them again a moment later when they return to perch on his bald pate.

There might be other things there too.  I imagine the people are all fat, but beautiful, young and sane.  They are very wise as well because they have the vast store of our own lost memories to call upon.

This is, of course a continent, a world outside our own; in another perhaps parallel universe, or perhaps on a very slight angle.  Yes, I believe it would not be perfectly parallel because at some time it, if only for a brief moment, if only in Plato's dreams, it crossed paths with our universe.  For a time a man could walk the streets and find his dog.  Maybe the people would approach him with his wallet he was sure he had had in his left back pocket.

They must have been wonderful times, but alas, they are all lost to us now.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Poll and Poll

A Pole pole courtesy of
The Copernicus Center Google+ page
Our last poll did illicit much response.  Only two people responded and said their preferred method of writing is with something computerish.

I actually had this poll idea a while back and now I get to use it.

What is your favorite Chicago movie?

I'm not going to list movies that are about Chicago if they weren't filmed here (I'm looking at you Chicago!) and short shots that are essentially stock footage don't count either (I'm looking at you My Big Fat Greek Wedding).  I'm debating including The Dark Knight.  Gotham looks so much better in these films because of Chicago, and if you know Chicago you know immediately it was filmed here.  On the other hand they call it Gotham, which I always considered to be New York.

I looked for some sites that listed movies in Chicago.  Esquire had a good article, and I'm thinking I should be able to trust Chicago Magazine and The Chicagoist.  I also pulled a list of all the movies ever filmed in Chicago since 1896 from The City of Chicago's own home Website.

For the poll I'm only going to put my top 5 up there to vote on, and an, "Other" category.  If you want to add others you can put a comment on this post.

Here is a list of Chicago movies I like:

  • My Best Friend's Wedding - don't actually like the movie, but the City looks fantastic in this and it has the Cuneo Museum up here in my neighboring town of Vernon Hills.
  • Candyman
  • 16 Candles
  • Untouchables - you don't like this movie?  "Well, you're not from Chicago."
  • Backdraft - I don't think the firefighters will agree, but I like it
  • About Last Night
  • Stir of Echoes
  • The Fugitive
  • The Blues Brothers
  • Risky Business - I have lots of comments about this, North Shore, "Looks like University of Illinois!", "Sometimes you just got to say...", the El, "Get off the babysitter", my mom told me Tom Cruise reminded her of me
  • Ferris Bueller's Day Off
  • The Break Up - again, don't like the movie, but Vaughn loves the City and it shows
There are some others that I've heard fantastic things about and may have seen part of, but not the whole thing:
  • Ordinary People
  • Road to Perdition
  • Public Enemies
  • Color of Money
  • Call Northside 777
  • Hoop Dreams
  • High Fidelity
  • Source Code
  • My Bodyguard
What do you like?  What are your favorite quotes?  Please share and vote.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Cache - Bank - Cache

You would have thought I would have known better by now.  I've been doing this blog for years and yet I fell for a very beginners trap, of not having enough material banked in case of an emergency.
Imagine these are all blog posts

The last two days have been crazy at work and at Scouts, well, that's really just excuses.  I could not get to the computer to write a post for this blog on Mondays.  Regardless, I have committed to making posts each Monday and I should have.

The way you make sure you can post on a set schedule despite any eventuality is to have a cache of material which I do not have.

I tend to get so excited when I write a post that I don't hang on to it, I post right away.  Also, I've set Mondays as posting day and writing day.  What I should do in this case is to write two posts each Monday.  That way I will have one to post and one to bank.

I will make sure I do that going forward.

What I am going to do next is go through the 30 Days of Worldbuilding exercise I went through before.  This time I promise a story on this site exclusively.  My plan is for a lighthearted, serialized story.  I will do several, "Days" at a time and when I have gotten far enough along, when I write a post for a, "Day" I will also write a part of the story.

Just a slight preview, there will be a country called Penoa (located between Finland and Sweden) and another called Anoitoia (a floating island actually) the last colony of Atlantis.

I will, this week, post a second post (to help make up for a lack of a post Monday) to review the last poll and introduce a new poll.  What would you like to see on that poll?