Finding My Mind

I’ve recently realized that I have a blog with some pretty good shit on it that I have systematically neglected for far too long. Yes, the Lost Posts from when I had private hosting are forever gone, and they do fill a page or so, but it shames me to both want to say so much, and actually say so little.

It may be the worst case of chronic writers’ block to ever exist, but more likely it is the result of the great trials from which I have just emerged. The past two years, in many ways the past ten, have been transformative and revelatory beyond what I had previously thought possible. Time has seemed to speed up, I never quite lost myself in the storm of change, but now, in my new home, I am having trouble reconnecting with my mind, my writerly ways. Still, now is the time.

Have I ever mentioned that I love Warehouse 13? Sure it isn’t the greatest Sci-Fi show ever made, but it is fun, and it has some wonderful human character moments. I found myself watching this video of the one-of-a-kind treasure that is Allison Scagliotti, performing The Pixies’ “Where Is My Mind” on the show. Her character has had her troubles, to say the least. The preface to this video has her character, Claudia Donovan talking about how she needs to get out of her comfort zone. I concur. I think its time to get out of my comfort zone, and back to my mind.

Thanks, Scags.

P.S. Allison, if you’re ever reading this, you’re pretty awesome. I’m pretty awesome too. We should totally get together and be awesome sometime.

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The Epic Legends – Atlanta – Epilogue

The story’s been told, the first legend put to print.

Here’s what happened after.

Me and the girl in the next seat never really happened as a couple.  Our relationship began and ended on that bus.  Still, its brevity and its purity changed my whole perspective on life and love.  I learned that hardship usually has a reward, even if the only reward is coming out of it stronger.  I learned how to talk to women.  I learned I’m a good storyteller.  I learned I wasn’t the hideous unlovable monster I’d tend to see in the mirror.  Not a month later, another legend would begin.  That story’s coming up one day, too.

Tony, who I’d known since I was a child fulfilled his childhood dream and became a firefighter.  It was the only job he ever wanted and he got it, and he’s damn good at it.  Tony’s a good guy.

Colin, the vile womanizer, happened to have a girlfriend waiting back in Northern Virginia who was none too pleased about what went on in Atlanta and on that bus.  Karma’s a bitch, and so’s his girlfriend when cheated on.  I have, to this day, not seen a more thorough ass-whooping of any man by any woman, or man for that matter.

Sergio graduated high school that year.  Turns out he had a twin brother.  I was mortified.  He was also 21 years old.

As for me, I went on to perform my first spoken word routine a few days after my return, emboldened by my newly-discovered talent.  For one class period, with the permission of the involved teachers I stood before the gathered students, many of them far better friends (and my future first-girlfriend among them) who laughed raucously, applauded, and set me on my course in life, to become a writer.  I completed my first screenplay two years later.

The events of that trip didn’t make me who I am, but their contribution was great.  Like anyone, I’m a sum of my experiences.  The next Epic Legend, “Busch Gardens I” takes place in the year 2000, and is not only my first encounter with a dread roller coaster, but the first major step on my journey to the great fleeting now.

Stay tuned.

Tears in the rain.

Blade Runner is the greatest film ever.

An unpopular statement, to be sure, there are so many more brilliant films, Metropolis, Citizen Kane, 2001. For sheer visual artistry, I cannot find one that matches Blade Runner, a film so stunningly ahead of its time that few could dream of matching it before 2017, the date in which it is set.

Just ten years away, in fact.

The film is twenty-five years old.

Sure there are better stories, and better performances to be had, but no film as deep, and vital, from its music, to lighting, and cinematography. Perhaps no words are fit to praise Rutger Hauer’s climactic monologue, a delivery that even Philip K. Dick himself would never have dreamed of.

The raw emotion wrenched from Roy Batty’s very last words, pure poetry.

A couple quotes after the jump. Continue reading

The Year of the Stunner: The Chaos Fold’s Gaming Year in Review (Part One)

2007 has been a banner year for video games. The titles that have bombarded store-shelves month after month continue to impress even the most jaded of critics. We have seen beloved franchises leap forward, new franchises born, and new developers rise to prominence.

In particular, 2007 has seen a stunning leap forward in the world of interactive storytelling. As film matured from silent clips of ribald comedy into spectacles of visual splendor and daring innovation, so too is gaming finding its own unique voice, and its own unique language for storytelling. As the Year of the Stunner, 2007 will not soon be forgotten. Continue reading

I’ve been a bad Sword King

So I’ve recently been in dereliction of duty here at my Blag, and I want to make up for that. Or perhaps just explain it.

I’ve been working on a new screenplay, well, filling in the skeleton of an idea that I’ve had for a while with sweet, tender meat. It’s called “Open Road” and is probably my best concept yet. For those who don’t know, the screenplays I have completed have largely been practice. “Possibilities”, my first and so-far greatest, borrowed heavily from my own past to flesh out the characters. “The Shrunken” and “Sped Life” were distilled silliness, the first being an exercise in just how bad a script I could write, and the latter being so politically-incorrect that it could never be made while I yet draw air. Continue reading

Bioshock = High Art.

I figure I should just come out and say it instead of dicking around with doublespeak. Bioshock is art.

After beating the game, for the first time ever I feel as if the title “Game” is a sleight against it. It is an experience, one that could easily be revelatory. For me, it once and for all answered the question of whether or not video games can be art.

There have been ‘Art’ games before like Shadow of the Colossus, Ico, Rez, etc. Those have all excelled in more finely focused ways such as visual beauty or symphonic immersion.

Bioshock is more the total package, perhaps to Video Games what films like Fritz Lang’s Metropolis and Sergei Eisenstein’s The Battleship Potemkin, both being films that addressed complex issues with artistry and scope unheard of at the time. Bioshock, perhaps influenced especially by Metropolis

Everything from the disturbing imagery, to the moral choices, to the beautiful ending, remind me of all the very best in film, prose, poetry, music, and the myriad graphical arts. It is an expression of an idea, many ideas in fact. Not simple ideas, either, or ideas of little import.

Bioshock, if you treat it as an experience and not “another game to use to buff my gamerscore”, acts as a sort of mirror. It asks us to answer questions and make decisions, none of which are easy to make. It also rewards us by treating us with respect, not pandering to any audience or critic’s whim. Perhaps the most impressive facet of the experience is not graphical, or literary, or auditory, nor any level of technical prowess. Perhaps the most impressive facet is that I can say with all honesty, that my life has been enriched by this game.

That is what makes something high art.

LAFS can go die in a fire.

So I’m home again.

Taking classes at the local community college while LAFS figures out just how badly they fucked me over.

Oh, and I’m 20 now. That’s about half as old as Star Wars. Heavy shit, man.

(edit: My good friend Travis pointed out to me that I am in fact two-thirds as old as Star Wars. Math sucks, anyway.)