Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Lonely Trees, Toxicity and Weird Mental Imagery

If there was ever a sure thing in life, it is that a nice photograph of a tree in a big, open field will be called "Alone" or "Lonely" by whoever submits it online... gee, how clever! O_o Watch for it now, you'll see what I'm talking about... next time you're browsing a photo gallery, see for yourself. It's almost as sure a thing as the fact that you'll hear the word "corazon" in any Spanish song you hear...

Greetings to everyone and their brother. In fact, send your brother a link to this post when you get a chance. That way he can get my greeting himself, and he'll be happy. Hey, tis the season! Yes, tis!

For those of you that love the sound of rain and rolling thunder massaging your ears and calming your nerves, through a nearby open window, I have a gift for you. I found a website that does nothing but play wonderful, high-quality ambient rain sound on an endless loop. CLICK HERE. Then turn your speakers up to a comfortable level, minimize the browser window, and enjoy. Oh, and bookmark the site for future use. I've had it on practically nonstop for the past few days.

Of course, I've been listening to some odd music lately as well. You will not believe the song that has been looping through my brain lately... I will post the video here, and I will say ahead of time, if you can survive listening to it through to the end, you will earn 25 bonus Dave Dollars, for you to spend at the Dave Store, buying high-demand Dave merchandise for your collection. Be warned: This song will have the exact opposite effect as the rain sounds... Think you're strong enough? MUAHAHAHAH!!!

I cannot explain why I find that song appealing. Everything about it militates against my liking it. The lead singer cannot sing. His voice like rubbing a cheese grater on my ears. Yet, it has relentlessly squirreled into my brain, and has taken up residence. I even bought the song on iTunes for my library!

I guess it's just one of those mysteries of life... Don't worry: this too shall pass.

And now, R2-D2-shaped ice cubes.

Makes every drink feel like you're drinking it in a space cantina! "These are not the cubes you are looking for..."

So I was thinking again today about the totally bizarre way I've always viewed the months of the year in my brain. I mean, from my earliest memory, I've always immediately conjured up this image in my head when someone mentions a month, and I try to place it in reference to the rest of the year. Here, I created this graphic to post here as I talk about it. And yes, it kind of weirded me out.

So, picture a clock, with months instead of numbers. And picture that clock's only "hand" rotating counter-clockwise. Now picture each of the sections of the clock all different sizes, where the "hand" of the clock goes faster through some segments, and slower through others. Hey, you don't have to picture it, just look at the graphic!

Yes, that's how my mind pictures the year. The "hand" for me (at this moment) is just barely into November, as pictured there. And the colors aren't random - those are the colors my mind assigns to each month, some for obvious reasons (oct/orange/halloween; march/green/st pat's), but others for reasons I know not.

In fact, the whole thing is a mystery to me. Why are some month segments much bigger, and others smaller? Why does the hand go counter-clockwise? Why the colors? And most of all, where on earth did this way of looking at the year come from? Frankly, I don't even know what "normal" people do when they think of different months. If someone says, "next April we're planning a trip", does your mind picture a calender? An hour-glass? An abacus? My mind immediately pictures this clock, and the hand swings around down to the bottom, stopping in the yellow, and now I have the time frame fixed in my head as the conversation continues.

Yeah, I don't know why I'm sharing this here. It kind of dawned on me a while ago that my brain did this. And the more I pondered it, the weirder I thought it was.

I guess I'm in the Lord's hands now...

Yeah, that's not a position I'd like to be stuck in. Then again, I doubt I'd ever skydive to begin with. I'd like to think I would do it... but I know I won't. Especially after reading this article about US Marine Corps pilot William Rankin, whose jet failed him while cruising at 47,000 feet, and he had to eject directly over a huge thunderstorm. Let's just say the trip from 47K feet to the ground was not fun. His chute trapped him in the thunderstorm for forty minutes before finally letting him out so he could land. Go read that article, if you want to see a man who's lucky to be alive...

So I signed up for NaNoWriMo again this year. I succeeded in 2009, and failed miserably in 2010. I'm off to a good start this year. In fact, when I finish this post, I'm going to open MSWord and throw some more words on the screen. Once I'm assured I'm on a roll, I'll let you know more about what I'm writing. Good thing I found this article on 14 punctuation marks that I never knew existed. It's a good read, if you want to give it a quick skim.

Well, I don't know what else to write about here, so I will end this nonsense.


Dave the Nonsensical


The Writer Currently Known as Rory said...

I found a website that does nothing but play wonderful, high-quality ambient rain sound on an endless loop. CLICK HERE. Then turn your speakers up to a comfortable level, minimize the browser window, and enjoy. Oh, and bookmark the site for future use. I've had it on practically nonstop for the past few days.

Wow. That's much more rain than we'll probably get in Southern California toward the end of the year. And if I keep it on for at least 20 minutes, I can accurately imagine squealing brakes, rear-end crashes and fender benders from Southern Californians who freak out at the sight of ONE raindrop. ;)

David Wagner said...

lol, true. Still, I enjoy it. I can't tell from your comment if you also liked the site, or if you are poking fun at it... either way, thanks for dropping by...

The Writer Currently Known as Rory said...

I can't tell from your comment if you also liked the site, or if you are poking fun at it... either way, thanks for dropping by...

I liked the site, and was poking fun at what I see all too often in this region. In fact, I've got it bookmarked to remind me of the Florida rain I occasionally miss.

logankstewart said...

what a great post, Dave!

1. "Toxicity" (as well as many other SoaD songs) has long been one of my songs to listen to when I'm stressed. Unlike you, I dig the singer's voice, and the high-energy of the song is great. I really like the acoustic "Roulette," which has a completely different sound.

2. The month calender is fascinating. My mind just makes abstract images and thoughts, nothing like this. Bloody brilliant, I say.

3. The Rankin article was riveting. I can only imagine. I've always liked stories of people falling from heights and surviving, whether parachuted or not.

4. Good luck with NaNo.

5. FTW!

David Wagner said...

Logan: I'll have to check out more of their music. Thanks for the push.

No skydiving for me, thanks! [shudder]


Michelle said...

I totally understand your months of the year graphic. I have one too, but mine is more like a ruler, and my year starts with September, and ends in august. Maybe it's because of my August bday...but I also see some months as larger, some as smaller, and each has their own color. Kinda weird if you ask me.

Have a great day!

Abbie Josephsen said...

lol, thanks for the punctuation article! some of those seem a little iffy, but I love the exclamation/question commas :) if those are real, I'd totally use them :D but I knew about the pilcrow one. there is a function on word where you can have it on and see all your spaces and breaks and it is so annoying :)

good luck on nanowrimo!

David Wagner said...

Michelle: You mean I'm not the only one!? YAY!!!

Abbie: They have to be real! Everything on the internet is true, isn't it!?!?! The novel is moving forward again! Woohoo!!!

Drydoryssus said...

So there's another soul on this planet intrigued by the weird structure of his mental year calendar.

Mine is pictured here.
For some reason I never picture an entire year image in my mind, just abstract fragments. So if I were to try and put them in a single diagram, chaos would ensue.

Yours is very interesting. No matter how hard I try, I can't fully simulate the concept of a CCW circular-type mental year image.
Also wondering how the different sizes and colours came to be, but I figure I'll never know.

David Wagner said...

Dang, Dry, that's awesome. I'm starting to find it fascinating the different ways you guys view the months... very unique... I wonder how I can find out more examples?

By the way, I think the different sizes may have to do with how much I enjoy that time of year. July/August is summer + my birthday, and Nov/Dec is Thanksgiving and the Christmas buildup. And the Jan/June corridor has always been a rather dismal stretch for me. And Sept signals the end of Summer, and back to work. And yet, Fall is my favorite season, so that doesn't jibe either.

Who knows. It's cool!