So, I've been extended invitation to make a Type Me thread, and I promised to get something posted today. I know this is a bit late. But, I still haven't finished it yet. So, here's my backup plan instead. If I don't finish tomorrow I'll post two more images.
A bit of background information before those images would be appropriate, I believe. When I like and care about someone, I tend to want to do something special for them. Something that takes real effort and really shows how much I really appreciate them. The examples below relate to this.
This image represents a sort of competition I'm participating in a game. It's basically about who can complete the game the most efficiently through one of the four paths. There's a prize, of course. At the start of the new "season" the people with the best "runs" through one or more of the paths receive the prizes with four total given out each season.
Now, I'm rather new at this game. I haven't been "speed running" near as long as some of the other participants of this game. I needed an edge. So, I devised this, where I record all the actions I take towards completing a run.
I'm probably not using it as best I can. Right now it serves me in two ways towards getting a better run. First one is obvious. It let's me compare how I am doing in my current run with my past runs. The second way it helps me is that it forces me to think about my every step through the game. Otherwise I may do something carelessly only to then realize I've put myself in a situation that I could have prepared for better.
Now, why am I willing to put through all this effort? Well, there are a few people in this game who have been exceptionally kind to me and good to talk to. Problem is, they are the kinds of people who have done most of everything in the game and don't have much else that they want or need. This is one of the few things they don't have. I'm going to get it for them.
Here's something I really worked hard in. I couldn't actually fit the whole thing onto my scanner which is unfortunate because that nuclear explosion has some real neat details to it. I drew it with an actual ink brush along with using ink pens for the letters. Oh my goodness. It took so much effort to finish.
But, I was willing. I used to belong to this other internet community, and one of the people there carried the nick "President Allosaurus." He was very nice to talk to, made very neat gaming projects, and created an interesting narrative. I really liked him. So, I decided to do something special for him. He rather appreciated it.
That's it for now. If I don't finish my typing thread tomorrow, I'll edit in two more images into the opening post.
Edit: Here are two images because I didn't finish yesterday.
I'm the one in the black jacket, I swear.
Another one from the Grand Canyon.
Edit: More pictures because of lateness
I really like my dog. Just posing her here for the picture.
Oh, now this is an interesting picture. It was taken at Yellowstone National Park, and we're on a sort of pier thing right above the hotsprings. You can't tell from this picture, but there is rather warm water floating right beneath us. Now, one of the signs had a dog walking with a leash with a slash over it. So, obviously dogs aren't allowed to walk on this pier. So, I carried her instead.
This one was taken near Mount Rushmore .
This picture is a younger me. You can tell because I'm wearing a different jacket. It seems like I change jackets yearly. Anyways, I had just had a rather nice conversation with this California State Representative so I was in a good mood. Heh, I believe my father asked why I was interrogating her. But, I just wanted to get to know her.
Finally, I have finished this, and, hopefully, it is interesting. But, that's up to you to decide.
Now, if there's anywhere to begin, it would be my school life. After elementary school, in particular. I spent a rather large portion of my time in that social environment. Oh, I should probably mention, the school I went to after elementary was 7-12 grades.
In general, I was off on my own. I guess I was waiting for someone to get to know me on their own terms. But, that never really happened. So, it was pretty much up to me to get used to my peer group enough that I would be willing to take interesting risks interacting with them. That took about 5-6 years. 4 if you count that athletic team I joined on my sophomore year.
There were, very occasionally, kind of, sort of attempts to engage me in some way. They weren't very committed, though. One example is when people would invite me to their lunch table which wasn't what I would call a very comfortable experience. I was just a guest. I could feel that I wasn't really part of the group. Eventually I would stop receiving invitations to join, and I would drift off again.
Quite unfortunate because I can actually be quite the entertaining fellow once I feel I have integrated somewhat into the group. I got to know this one particular group of students rather well because we would consistently meet up over the entire course of our schooling life. See, our school had set up this thing where the same group of students would meet every so often in the week in a sort of “Study Hall” class. The students in each “Study Hall” class remain the same year to year. So, it was a rather great opportunity to get to know a significant portion of my peers.
Certainly not all sessions of “Study Hall” was all about studying. Hardly any near the end. Sometimes we would play the game Mafia. For those that don't know what Mafia is, here's a link: <A href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mafia_%28party_game%29">Mafia</a>
This one particular session of Mafia, around that 5-6 year mark of our time in the academy, was quite interesting to me, seeing as how I remember it clearly enough to write it down. We always assigned roles by handing out poker cards. Ace for mafia members, King for detective, Queen for nurse, and vanilla cards for regular folk. Previous two games I got Ace and King respectively. This time, I got a vanilla card. It was at this moment I knew that I would be the first targeted by the Mafia.
How did I know? Difficult to say. A variety of factors. Largest being my standing in the group and my actions in the previous Mafia games. It wasn't a paranoid thing either. You just... know that was going to happen. Nothing I could do about it. It is unfortunate. It wouldn't look so well on me if I go out in such a boring, unceremonious manner. But, wait! There is something I can do to make things a bit more interesting...
So the night phase comes, all the appropriate roles make their decisions, and it's time to reveal the results. The Narrator spins a tale about a wayward football that smacks me in the head and explodes. Oh well. Can't say I didn't see that coming. And so it was time for me to flip over my card and reveal to the rest what role I played. I flip. Ace card.
The look on everyone's faces! Priceless. Quick explanation. While everyone was looking away, I slipped my vanilla card under a piece of paper I happened to have on my desk and snagged one of the free Ace cards that were laying nearby. Neat how things worked out like that.
There is another time where events conspired to give me another such great opportunity. Once again it was with a group of people I was quite a bit more comfortable around than the average student body. It was my athletic team, and we were holding a sort of banquet at a rather nice place, to celebrate the end of the season. Once dinner was served and everyone was well into their meal, they set up the desert stand right in the center focus of the room. It was in front of the place the speaker that would be announcing the awards and such. Strange. But, they made sure to state that we could come up and get some desert at any time.
After that, though, it was time for the coach to start handing out the awards. He went through each award giving a little speech before the student was called up to accept theirs. Eventually it was time for him to announce the recipient of the coveted MVP award. Everyone knew who the MVP was (Hint: it wasn't me). But, he wanted to be coy about it and went on and on describing how outstanding he was without actually going all the way and stating his name. Aha! Opportunity!
So, I wait at the edge of my seat, for the dramatic pause before the coach announces the name of the MVP. But, he just kept going on and on and on. Eventually, I figured that the dramatic pause was never going to come. I'll have to do this now, if I wanted it to work. Ah well, it won't be perfect. This'll do, I hope. I put on my poker face and stood up quite deliberate like. The coach stops talking and looks at me, as does everyone else in the room. I walked to the center of the room. Instead of turning to “accept” my award as normal procedure, I kept going until I arrived at the desert table. I bent down, grabbed my desert, and retook my seat. Everyone burst out laughing. Wonderful.
That seems to be a common theme of mine. As I warm up and become familiar with some people, I tend to be willing to take those sorts of chances if I feel they will be taken well. This includes acting a bit goofy if I've got an interesting thing I'd like to do. Of course, I always keep an eye out on people's reactions. See if I need to ease off.
I do remember this one time I did something a bit goofy with the same group of students from the Mafia game whom I was rather familiar with. It was raining outside, and I had been thinking about how it was a little bit silly how people were avoiding the rain. I stared out the door and contemplated. Then, I ran. 100 yards into the rain and 100 yards back. Was real neat. This is hardly typical behavior for me. But, I did do it.
Perhaps one last example of a group of students I was more at ease around? This one doesn't have the same punch as the previous examples did so I apologize in advance. Now, I took an art class as an elective in my senior year. It had a mix of two grade levels in it. The table I sat by also was mixed. One senior in particular took my interest at this table. He would talk with the lower class men about all the crazy shit he got into. I liked to listen to him tell these tales. It's a thing I can do. Listen to people. I didn't do all that much. Mostly just listened. But, once he mentioned about us sneaking out of the classroom to go and get pizza. For one reason or another it never happened. Wish it did, though. I would have went.
But, perhaps I have been concentrating a bit much on my interactions with students? Teachers are important as well. Somehow, I also managed to endear myself with most of them. They would trust me with things they would not for the vast majority of the student populace. They also cut me /a lot/ of slack. Far more than typical. Perhaps my father said it best after attending a meeting with a group of them. “What, do you have a halo floating above your head?” -_-'
I believe I've exhausted my reader's patience about my time within the school social atmosphere. It's unfortunate, though, that through all my years spent within the education system, I didn't manage to make a close friend. Hmm...
Let's move onto the family side of my social interactions.
I have this nephew who once was living at my place for quite some time. Near the end of his stay, I started playing quite a lot of Super Smash Brothers with my brother and my cousins. It was quite the old game by then. My nephew was about... 5(?) while I was in the summer between my junior and senior years of school. Somehow, we got him playing with us and he actually wasn't completely horrible! Far better than the level 1 computers. Turns out a 2-d platformer plus a simple control scheme is a great environment for someone to learn gaming.
One day, I had learned he would be moving far away. Before he went, though, I wanted him to do something really special. I wanted him to beat the Super Smash Brothers campaign on the Very Hard difficulty. No one else thought he could do it. But, I knew he had it in him.
I started him on the lower difficulties and we worked our way up. Once we got to Very Hard he was getting his butt kicked quite frequently. During these moments my nephew would say, “Here!” and try to give me the controller so I can beat the computers for him. But, I was quite adamant that he was the one to beat this Very Hard campaign. I really did encourage him, and was really careful not to overly frustrate him. After a certain amount of progress we'll lay off it and begin again the next day.
One day, he got to the final boss. This is it. He's done that a few times before. But, this day... this day was going to be different. The stage was set for him to face down Master Hand with his last remaining life. He immediately went off set the pace of the battle by waddling Donkey Kong over to Master Hand and giving him a good smack. And they were off!
Smack smack smack smack. Oh no, Master Hand is attacking! Shield! Ok, smack smack smack smack. Here he goes again. Jump, jump! Alright, you've got this. Keep smacking away. Jump again! Oh jeez, your jump was just a bit off. That's ok, your damage is still pretty low. His health is getting a bit low, too, though. He's starting to attack much faster now. Oh boy, you're shield can't seem to regenerate fully between he's attacks. Gosh darn it, it broke. This is going to hurt... ouch. That's ok, you've still got this. He's sooo close to dying! You've alllmosst got this! Soo close! No! No!!! Ok, ok, you're still fine. Just float back onto the platform. Come on, you've almost... done... it...
Yes! YES!!! You've done it! Oh my goodness, you've actually done it! YEESSS!!!
Heh, I miss the little guy. I really got close to him through all that.
Onto other relations, I have another interesting one with my cousins. Sometimes, we would see each other very often and get real close. We'll do all sorts of really fun stuff together. Sometimes, there would be very long periods where we don't see each other at all. When we finally do meet again, I would feel a sort of distance between each other. I can't just go right back to acting like I would when we were spending a lot of time with each other. I'd have to build things back up to that point. Just something interesting I noticed about that relationship.
Heh, well this section is shorter than it could have been. But, now I just feel like moving on. Maybe I'll return to this if you people need more stuff to work with for some reason.
Now, types are a bit more than simply their interactions with other people. That part is important, sure. But, there is more.
One thing I've heard a lot from people is some variation of “you are spending too much time on such and such.” Seems like I tend towards two extremes. Either I can hardly put any effort into something, or put a lot of effort to make sure I do exemplary work. Recently, I've come to suspect that this sort of behavior is actually very draining for me, and what I need to do is be able to relax. I might actually be able to get more done this way. Cause what I'm doing now sure isn't working out.
See, a major weakness of mine is this difficulty to just do what needs to be done. I could sit down, tell myself I really need to do this thing... and go off and do something else. Oh sure, I can work very hard on some sort of assignment and get amazing marks. But, that won't really cover for the dozen of other missing assignments. Also, and most importantly of all, I just don't really seem to have control over what I will work really really hard on and what I won't.
As you can imagine, this was a major problem in school because of all the homework and projects. No matter how well you do in the tests (I tend to do rather well) not doing the homework/projects is going to cause a major hit on your grades.
Wasn't always like this. In the beginning, I could do most things right up until the couple months before the school year ended. Then my focus started slipping. But... maybe I took too many classes in my latter years of school? I know I took an awful lot in my 3rd year in the academy so maybe what happened is I burned myself out by trying so hard on so many things. Doesn't really explain why this is lasting so long.
It's strange. It seemed to me each successive year it would get worse. The general trend is that I'm able to juggle all the assignments at the beginning of the year, and later on I'll slip up and let one or two fall. By year's end, I'll hardly be able to manage anything. I'll be able to recover somewhat through the summer. It isn't, however, a complete recovery. The next year I'll be able to keep up with all assignments for an even less amount of time and collapse comes sooner.
I thought it might have been a problem of discipline. So, I devised the best schooling regime I knew how to sometime in my senior year. Key point was that there was only to be one hour of free time every day of the week except for Sunday. Sunday was break day. Before the start of a new day, decide 3 priority items that must be completed tomorrow. No if, ands, or buts. If for some unthinkable reason one of those items could not be finished, move it along to the next day along with 3 other priority items. Oh, and remember to schedule in some time for bathroom use and dinner. That's rather important. With those things in mind, 1 hour of free time, 3 priority items, and basic living necessities, fill in the rest of the schedule for the day with whatever else I can according to the time estimates of how long I believe they will take to complete.
There's more to it than that. Determine in advance what assignments and projects I will get. As soon as possible, sit down and estimate how long each assignment and part of a project would take to complete. Use these estimates to help with forming the schedule above. Create a rough idea of how everything will fit together using calendars. Fill in when important landmarks should be completed. Everything nice and scheduled.
There's more. Studying isn't really an “assignment.” But, it is an important part of schooling. Optimal studying from textbooks should be follow these steps. Speed read a section of a chapter. Write down what I can remember. Read it slower this time. Again, write down what I can remember. Read it once more. This time, stand up and lecture to an imaginary audience of the material within that section. Repeat for all the other sections until you are finished studying for whatever it is you are studying for. Heh, and I thought I did well on tests before.
I did all this mostly on my own. The most I had anyone assisted me with was providing the scheduling materials such as calendars and printing paper. Otherwise, it was all on me.
This sort of living went well for the first month. After that it started deteriorating. By the fourth month, it had entirely collapsed. Predictable. At least I was able to get a rather unprecedented amount of things done throughout that time.
What went wrong, though? It is certainly not from lack of effort because I was in “work really, really hard” mode. I can't actually work harder than that to make something work. Maybe I set unrealistic standards for myself? Maybe it just isn't something I can do on my own. Probably a mix of reasons.
So, here I am still having trouble doing things I know need doing. Oh well. Maybe I'll try again.
I suppose I may as well stop here. If something needs clarifying or you need to know more, for some reason, feel free to ask.