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Tuesday, August 30, 2005

To Bring it Home

Here is a photo of our friends' (the ones staying with us) region at the moment.

Most of the Southeast corner of our state looks like this.

Alive (South Louisiana Apocalypse)

Well, we have made it. Kathrin passed a little too far East of me to cause New Orleans like devastation, but she has left her mark here in Pointe Coupee Parish. We have lost many trees, roof tiles, insulation, and such, but my house is okay. We will probably be without power for the rest of the week, but my father picked up a generator from Lafayette, and I am using that to send out this message. Some friends from Saint Bernard Parish (bordering Orleans Parish) are staying with us. They just found out that their house is basically gone. Most of St. Bernard flooded to about twelve feet-the eye of the hurricane passed directly over. They will probably be with us for a while, so hopefully we can get the power back to keep us in greater comfort, though looking at what our friends escaped, and what so many people are going through right now, we got off easy. It's ironic in an Alanis Morrisette kind of way that my last post was about TV shows I can now no longer watch because of the electricity debacle here, but at this point, that doesn't seem to matter so much.
As always, if you are the praying type, the people from Grand Isle to Gulfport could all use your prayers, as many of them are without homes now. Many refugees are staying in my parish, and many are staying in East Baton Rouge, which I think took a little less wind damage than we did.
I have been documenting everything here with the digital camera, so I am hoping to get all of that up when the power comes back on, and I have the resources to do so.
Thank God, though, that I can sit in my home and type this right now. Ninety miles southeast of here, people's houses are under as much as twenty feet of water. We only got 2 and a half inches.
I don't know why. I might never.
Many are saying this could be the most costly disaster in America's history. The devastation of land may be greater than that of the Asia Tsunami last year, except we had almost two days warning, which will drastically reduce the loss of life compared to that disaster. The sad thing, though, is that many people had no means to get out, even with the advanced warning, and many of those people, especially in New Orleans, are still stuck there on rooftops. I am sure, if you have been watching the news, you have seen this, but if for some reason this whole post seems foreign to you, please turn on your TV.
The water in New Orleans is still rising due to levee breaks and such, so hopefully anyone who stayed in the area, and is still alive, will be air-lifted out. From the little footage that I have seen, there are some spectacular rescues going on.
Finally, I want to reiiterate to anyone who hasn't been keeping up-this situation is bad. As the local news is apparently saying, if Louisiana is a foot, the toes are almost completely underwater. Please pray or at least think of us.
Oh well. Back to the sweat pit out here on the ankle.
Best wishes,
Nicholas

Thursday, August 25, 2005

TV Good

It is no secret that I like the TV. I must call attention to two shows you should watch for me, so the ratings go up, so they don't get cancelled, so I don't get depressed, so I don't cry and write bad poetry about capitalism.

A. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia-FX, Tuesday at 10 p.m. central, Thursday at 9:30 p.m.
I'm serious. This is the funniest show I have seen since Seinfield. Maybe it's because IASIP has the exact same concept: 3 guys and a girl with absolutely no moral center screwing everything up. Tuesday night, I almost peed myself six times before the opening credits. If controversial stuff bothers you, or you are uptight, steer clear. Sometimes, I look around before laughing at this show, and I watch it alone.

B. Rescue Me-FX Tuesday 9 and 11 p.m. Central
Good Lord in Heaven, thank You for television. There have been several times in my life that I did not feel worthy of watching certain programs. The Sopranos first season, during the finale confrontation b/t Tony and his ma. The entire final hour of the Shield's 3rd season. The Buffy Season 2 finale where Buffy sends her lover to the grave. Rescue Me, two nights ago, during the final montage set to that "Light Up" song, where, after going a day without them, Dennis Leary's goofballs kick in and he grins like a toddler. This show is unbelievable. There are three episodes left until the finale, but there is about a five minute recap of previous plotlines before every episode, so the show is easy to get into. This is the best show I have seen this year, and I watch a whole lot of good TV. This show kills me. It would be the funniest show on TV, if not for "...Philadelphia", but the writing, acting, drama, cinematography...everything on this show this season is clicking together, and stuff like that doesn't happen often. You gotta cherish it.
Addiction, loss, pain, joy, hope, misery, death-this show is nailing everything.

So anyway, even if you have no interest in these shows, even after hearing my unfallible opinion, please put them on and just mute the TV and go read or something, so Nielson picks up the ratings and my shows don't get cancelled.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Coincidences

Tonight, I get a friend of mine, The White, to help me remove the strings from my guitar after church. I haven't changed them in... a while, so we have to use a sturdy paper clip to push them out. When we finish, he grabs my guitar and sings, "I'm gonna sing a song for you. (He hesitates...Thinks...Scrunches his face...) The world is a vampire!" Then he makes a really confused face.
"Weird," he says. "I haven't even thought about that song in years. Why would I sing that?"
I almost say Hey, I just checked that Smashing Pumpkins album out at the library, but I don't say anything. How could it have been important? When we were getting into our cars to leave, I can't help it.
"It's weird, you sang that," I say. "I just checked that album out from the library."
"The Smashing Pumpkins?" He asks.
"Yeah."
"Hmm."
We say goodbye and leave.
Instances like this seem strange to me. Kind of reminds me of the times I learn new words. It seems like anytime I hear a word I have never heard before and learn its meaning, I hear it a dozen more times that day. This is strange. Is there a reason for this? Sometimes I wonder.
Options:
A. No reason. Just coincidence.
B. A reason. Think about it.
C. Haha, the universe has confounded you once again!
Anyway, this is the sort of thing I can overthink. Strange, rare factors coinciding always make me want to think too much. The bonus of this is that I come up with all kinds of crazy sci-fi ideas to write about. The negative is, of course, overthinking, and wasting time that could be spent elsewhere.
Either way, life is a strange and wonderful thing.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Britney Spears causes a mental journey to enlightenment

Last night, I mentioned my lack of skill at the video game Karaoke Revolution. This is the Playstation game where you sing along to hit songs in a microphone, and get rated. Out of a field of eight, I came in last. This was my first time playing, but it was also my younger brother's first time, and he got 6th (I heard he moved up to 4th, after I left). I was in 5th for a little while, but my horrible performances of Britney Spears' "Hit Me Baby, One More Time", as well as Otis Redding's "Sittin By the Dock of the Bay" knocked me to last. This confused me. I always assumed I was a much better singer than Mrs. Spears.
Wrong, I guess.
Actually, this ruined my dreams. I always knew that someday I would front a rock band, and people would gape at my incredible vocal prowess. Now, I don't know this at all, anymore. Plus, my younger brother (by 5 years) has, in the last three months, defeated me handily in basketball, foosball, and now, singing. These three things were my bread and butter. And the excuses I had for doing poorly at Karaoke? My throat hurt. I couldn't stop coughing. Those things were true. But anytime I am on the spot this happens to me, and I'm not lying, but people tend to stop believing me after the 10th time. Why does this happen to me. Is this God's way of humbling me? It works.
I think getting beaten at singing is the worst, though, because singing is something you release from the inside of your body to the outside world. Thus, losing at this game makes me feel like I have nothing of worth to give. Not really, but on long drives home, I like to try to figure out why losing a stupid game makes me feel so bad about myself. Also, after losing, I said, "That's it! I'm going to figure this game out!" So, while everyone went downstairs(thankfully, I was not defeated at my own home), I practiced Mrs. Spears' song again. This time I did even worse. Several people came upstairs and filmed my performance with their cell-phones. I made cool facial expressions, and everything. When I was finished, they immediately ran out of the room and humiliated me. Usually I am a good sport on these things, and can use my self-deprecating sense of humor to laugh at myself. Usually, I don't get bothered by this sort of thing, at all.
This time, though...I was infuriated. Seriously, I kept it under the surface, but I wanted to go into Tony Soprano mode. It didn't help that my mockers were jerks about it. When I came into the room, they kept making fun of me. This was expected. I wouldn't have cared. But when I started to talk, they kept making fun of me to each other, and ignored me. I guess it didn't help that I was practically the oldest person there, but still, these people are in their 20s.
"Well," I said out loud. "I'm humiliated, now. I guess I'll go home."
I said this seriously, but everyone continued to ignore/mock me, except for my sister, who told me to stick around. "Nah," I said. "I think I want to go." So I left.
So, admittedly, while my mockers were being jerks, this probably shouldn't have pissed me off to this extent. But it did. So why? Why do I want to buy a PS2 and this game, and become a master at it to show everyone up? I'm 23. Aren't I supposed to be sort of grown up by now? I guess not. And speaking of grown up...
Last night, as I made the decision that I was ready to start blogging again, I listened to a CD I had just checked out from the library. It was an album I have never heard in its entirety, an album that came out just before I turned fourteen, an album that I really wanted to buy in 1995. Well, growing up in a poor and religiously constrictive household is not exactly a good conduit to a thick music collection. So, after ten years, I have finally completed a full listen of The Smashing Pumpkin's Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. I enjoyed it just as much as I thought I would have in 1995. In fact, the album(s) made me feel fourteen all over again. I know I would have won Karaoke Revolution without even trying back then.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Well Then

How is everyone? I am...
I have no attachment to this world. I belong to no friendship or organization that I cannot leave in a second. I am totally disconnected. This is a strange feeling. I feel connected to God in some strange intangible way, but nothing physical ties me down to this world. I would like to go somewhere and start a completely new life, but I have $52 in my bank account and little drive. So I guess I will stay here. After a little bit of work as a painter, I finally put in some job applications this week, all for state positions. I took the state professional entry test and got a perfect score. Then I played Karoake Revolution (a singing game) and got last place. This experience was quite humbling. All of the accomplishments(?) in my life felt worthless because, out of a group of eight, I was the worst at singing "Hit Me Baby, One More Time". For some reason, this was a crushing blow, and made me question my worth, and life direction. I'm serious.
Anyway, I guess I will start updating this blog again. I realize that before I kept making bigger and bigger rants that made me feel good. I am not saying the rants were good, but they made me feel good, and I had to kept putting more effort to make myself happy. That was not good. This time I am not going to be so egotistical. Or try at least.
Anyway, I am a 23-year old male from Glynn, Louisiana, with a B.A. in English, minors in Film Theory and History, and a 3.515 G.P.A, all at Louisiana State University. I took the state Professional Entry Test and scored a perfect which qualifies me for any state job only requiring a B.A. These jobs aren't high paying. I just want to be able to support my writing. My rewrite of my first novel is coming along well. Anyone have any better suggestions? Please give me. I need them. I am trying to cut back on me ego, but I can't lie. Comments make me feel good.
Hope you all are well. G'night...