I made a new YouTube video! I haven’t done one in 5 months!
Be sure to like, comment, subscribe, and follow on Twitter!
See you in 5 months…. (God, I hope not!)
I made a new YouTube video! I haven’t done one in 5 months!
Be sure to like, comment, subscribe, and follow on Twitter!
See you in 5 months…. (God, I hope not!)
So, Drake, Hammy, and I–on a lark–started a new podcast last night. Entitled Afterburn, so far it’s a humorous look at aviation news while we rant about various topics and whatever happens to come to mind. Think Top Gear meets Diggnation but about planes and helicopters instead of cars.
I came to an all-too-important realization today while I was trying to write up bios for each of us, and that was that I should always do my word processing in a local file before typing directly into a browser window. Yes, internet common sense, I know, but I was running on some 3 hours of sleep, nursing a hangover, and fueled more by mania than anything else. That being said, I’m typing into a TextEdit window now before I do all the nifty formatting things in the WordPress publisher.
I’ve been on a little bit of a creative kick as of late–doing various projects that seem to satisfy that little creative spark I get every so often. Sketchuary, I guess, was a warm-up. For those of you who don’t know, I tried to start the Sketchuary project of a sketch a day for all of February. I made it about seven days, then promptly lost any time and energy I had set aside for it as the production of Anna In The Tropics drew ever-closer. I tried to catch up while on vacation in California (mainly by sitting in the relative comfort of Disney California Adventure’s Animation Workshop and being taught how to sketch various characters), but still only managed another three or four sketches.
Needless to say, this blog post is coming out of this creative mania. I have a few artsy projects lined up, and a few completed. I’ve already done a few frame jobs, and I have a couple of collages to do (one of Las Vegas souvenirs, another of Tron stuff from DCA, and yet more of squadron patches I got tired of keeping locked away in my firebox). I’m seriously considering more podcasty things to do, but I think the blog is pretty effective right now. Maybe if I get more interesting posts, I’ll be able to attract some followers?
I know I keep saying “expect more,” and rarely deliver; I’ll refrain from that this time, and simply say that I’m excited to stay busy with more creative projects–maybe my natural zest for showmanship will fuel a desire to keep showing off even the most inane things.
Meanwhile, keep an eye open for Twitter posts and feel free to browse my plethora of diversions scattered about to the four winds:
My friends, it has come to my attention that WordPress offers a much better product to fit with the style I want this blog to evolve into. Entries will continue as often as possible, but with a much nicer interface. I am also combining this blog with my personal blog under a common domain, http://airbornesurfer.wordpress.com
It is my hope that you enjoy my ramblings in addition to other sorts of geekery that my blog will continue to provide.
As the little yellow house has become a veritable storage shed, I have taken it upon myself to thin out and discard (sell, donate) anything of mine that is not of any intrinsic value to me. At the same time, I’m actually making use of those things that are of intrinsic value. It still makes me sad going through a lot of it, but it’s part of pulling myself–kicking and screaming, if needed–into the present and future. This project and it’s sub-parts constitutes phase one of the “Grandiose Schemes.” It’s kind of a “reduce, reuse, recycle” philosophy of mine that, at one time, I tried to live by–then I became a pack-rat. Fortunately, the advent of digital technology and media storage has enabled me to dispense with much of my physical media (videos, music, books, etc.) in favour of digital copies. The fire also helped with the whole “need to cull” mindset.
Part One: Conversion Box
In order to actually partake of this daring scheme, I must first build a media conversion box to handle all the rendering necessary to make these transitions happen. It will also have to run on *shudder* Windows because I will need the software support for my input devices.
Part Two: Vinyl and Cassette to MP3
I have some 3 crates of vinyl albums and a case full of audio cassettes stowed in the house. My goal is to have them all converted to MP3 so I can actually enjoy them without the hassle of transporting them, storing them, or setting up a record player whenever I want to hear them. I’ve completed two similar projects already with backing up my DVDs and CDs. This will simply prove to be more tedious.
Part Three: VHS to AVI
I still have a bag full of VHS tapes to convert to a digital format for editing and storage. This will be nearly as tedious as the audio, but not as time-consuming as there is less to convert.
Part Four: Scanning photos
Boxes of them. Finally make use of my scanner.
Part Five: Disposal
Anything I have that is not of any intrinsic value to me will be either sold, donated, or given away to those who would find intrinsic value in the items. I have already made several hundred dollars on Amazon, and that is keeping my head above water for the time being. Nadia’s things will be boxed-up and delivered at some point when everything is finished.
It seems like every time I get something fixed, three more crises show up to replace it. I just need to get back to a good, solid zero and I’ll be generally okay. Let’s take a look at the updated situation since New Year’s Day:
I Received a notice of code violation from the county regarding Nadia’s truck that was still parked in the driveway at the house. I called a tow company to have it removed. No confirmation on whether or not the vehicle was, in fact, removed.
I also received some letter from the county building inspector alluding that my house is not up to code. Great. I don’t want the damned place, the bank doesn’t want the damned place, and no investor wants it either! Unfortunately, I’m on the hook for whatever this is, but it’ll be Monday before I can find out the details.
Granny gave me the money to get my flight account squared-away (back to zero), and I got details from Sandy at dispatch on how to monitor the account myself. At least I can keep an eye on it now. Meanwhile, I’m trying to get student loans to go into the account and get some flight time going. I still haven’t passed my instrument rating yet because of this financial craphole, but Chris is helping me stay on top of the game–as long as I keep him informed. Likely, what’s going to happen is that I’m going to not take a flight class this semester and, if I can get money in, fly “on the side” and take another required class instead. Maybe physics.
The downside to my flight account being zeroed is that now my checking account is sitting around ($350). That’s a negative amount, to the uninitiated. It’s all from not keeping track of the balance until it’s too late, so I have no one to blame but me. Unfortunately, I have to find some way to pay for shipping on my Amazon orders so I can continue to receive payments. I just sold my Transportation textbook, and I could use the $120 to offset the negative balance.
I need help from the parents, but when I earnestly ask my father for help to buy books–as he said he would–I just get the same old song-and-dance. I’m not asking for them to pay off my mortgage so I can try to sell the house again, nor am I asking them to bail out my irresponsibility with my checking account. I legitimately need help with school and keeping my head above water in the meantime. I would just like to be able to ask for help without being thrown for a guilt trip–it’s hard enough to swallow my pride enough to ask in the first place.
I’m starting to become more comfortable with being single. I really take solace in the fact that I should be by myself and get my own affairs in order before I get involved with someone who may take on a shared responsibility with me. That was a main problem with my ill-fated relationship with Nadia–neither of us had our idiomatic “felgercarb” together, and it caused a major rift. It’s best to learn from that. If there is someone out there in the meantime, the best thing she can do is be my best friend and confidant until the dust settles. So far, I’m actually fairly excited about staying in Cochran more often–it gives me time to myself. It gives me time to bond with my fellow pilots and start clubs and activities at the school. I want to be proud of my school, and I want be able to remember these years fondly as a time of rebirth and new development. Of course, I have my grandiose schemes, but those will be outlined in subsequent numbers.
Collections calls are still coming in, but with less frequency. With some perseverance, they’ll go away entirely soon. I have at least another Betty-load of stuff to bring down to Cochran for a more permanent existence. I need to get a few things out of the house in Smyrna–desk, light bulbs, maybe the refrigerator. I also have things to get from Nadia–books, mainly. I also have a number of her belongings–her SNES, games, and computer parts, mainly–that need to go back to her.
On a higher note, I do have plans. I have my grandiose schemes. Some of them are starting to come to fruition, and some of them are close to being activated. My friends have been the main focus in my life for several months now, and it’s time to, in the words of Mister Mister, “take these broken wings and learn to fly again.” You may or may not know who you are, but I appreciate your help from the bottom of my heart. I feel like I’m very close to “square one” socially–reconnecting with the people who were important to me in the past, and making them a part of my present and future. I’ve all-but closed my MySpace account; I check in every now-and-again for the few people who I don’t have on Facebook. I feel like MySpace represents a certain time in my life whose chapter has closed–like the middle instalment of a trilogy that we would sooner relegate to the dustbin in favour of the other two. My friends on Facebook represent the best times of my life: early childhood, high school, full-time at KSU, and flight school. Most of my MySpace friends cross over anyway, and I can really only think of four people off-hand that haven’t made the connection, so it’s manageable to call or email them periodically.
Overall, I’m still excited. It’s still an uphill struggle, but I know I’ve got the power available. Now, I just need to make the climb.
It’s a brand new day, and the sun is high….
I don’t like New Year’s resolutions. I just like to make changes from day one and stick with them. It’s too much to start everything all on one day; it overwhelms the brain and causes people to abandon their resolutions. My view is more like a set of goals for the year: keep them time-oriented and specific, have them build on each other, and–most importantly–make them measurable. That being said, here is a starter list of goals, objectives, and ideas for 2009:
First and foremost, 2008 is over. Stop dwelling on it. I know that this is really the opposite of what I stated my definition of “goals” is, but this is the one thing that sits as the linchpin for every other goal on this list. Stop thinking thoughts of Nadia. She did what she did and I did what I did. Stop picturing it; stop replaying it in your mind. Remember the good times, but realise why things ended. Leave the pain behind, seek counseling if needed. Understand that there are friends that care about me deeply, and that their love is stronger than hers. It’s not conjugal, but it doesn’t need to be. The girls are well-taken care of. Sake and Ms. Briggs are safe with the Midanis and Sentra is doing well by Granny. Burn the mementos–you don’t need them anymore. Find forgiveness for the biggest mistake you ever made.
Finalise the situation with the house. Get the house back within code so there’s no longer a court-order looming over. Ask the right questions. Find out what to do to get square with the bank. Resolve the outstanding utility bills. Be free of the second-biggest mistake you ever made.
Make time to read more. Finish The Journey of Self Discovery by the end of January. Read when you’re working in the library–it’s not like there’s much else better to do.
Make exercise part of your daily routine. All or nothing. Pick up Budokon and T’ai Chi, learn the routines, and practice them. Hit the elliptical trainer and the rowing machine. Break 2:00 on the 500m row. Finish the 1000m row.
Save money. Don’t make unnecessary trips. Stop coming to Atlanta every weekend, find things to entertain in Middle Georgia. Spend time with your acquaintances there–make friends. Enjoy your college time again.
Pull the GPA up above 3.0. Shoot for at least a 3.5. Get a new organiser for 2009. Stay on top of due dates, budget time more appropriately, and actually read the material–study it as necessary. Put in the effort and reward yourself.
This is by no means a comprehensive list, but a good place to start. I’m sure there will be more objectives coming along as they become apparent. Stay tuned; 2008 is the worst year on record for me, and there’s nowhere left to go but back up.
Couldn’t get the override for ground school because I may not have the prerequisite for the class by fall: my instrument rating. It’s stupid.
After finding an error in my schedule for the semester, I get solid ideas as how best to finish my degree paths here at Middle Georgia College.
Just what the doctor ordered, right? Better mindset can fix a lot–as will your financial aid coming through finally.
Well, things are going all right for the time being, I s’pose. My back hurts for no apparent reason, but I’m surviving. I’ve got a lot happening right now, so time comes a little bit at a premium right now. I hope that everything I’m working on can manifest itself successfully. Sorry for being so incredibly vague, but I’m not quite sure which way certain things are going and I don’t want to get myself too hyped-up over anything just in case plans fall through. In any case, just wish me luck, and I will kep you all apprised of what develops as things begin to clarify. Just a few of the things going on: A new educational and career endeavour. Promotions and raises. Financial endeavours. Organisational endeavours. Personal enrichment endeavours. Home improvement endeavours. As many of you know, I was promoted to assistant manager at Vitamin World, bringing with it a mediocre but impactful raise. It’s a nice bonus, as it helps to bring financial enrichment a little more quickly. It’s my goal to get Bank of America out of my life as soon as possible (more on this to be saved for a later number–in the meantime, check out Clark Howard.com for one motive). I also have a modest amount of credit card debt amassed since buying the house (they nickel-and-dime you to pieces when you purchase one) which I need to pay off. I don’t need CCCS or anything, just patience and prudence. One of my more daunting projects in recent years was to digitize my entire CD collection (some 270+ discs) so I would have random access to almost all my music in one, convienent location (and so I could load my iPod more easily). Now that I am moved into the house and have more available physical space–more “elbow room,” if you will–I have addressed the question of the remainder of my music collection: Digitizing my LP records, 45’s, and cassettes. I don’t have quite the number of them as I have compact discs, but there is much more work involved: recording the album to the computer, cutting each track, encoding to mp3 format, importing into my iTunes library, and finally writing ID3 tags. Needless to say, it’s quite time-consuming, but I’ve managed to complete 14 LP’s in only a few days. The worst part about this project is that it kinda makes my computer bleed with all the processing power it requires. Not so much the power, but the load–and what a load! That’s about all for now. More to come as things progress.