Progress

This will be the last of those ‘How productive am I being at this random time of day?’ posts for a while – at least a week or two. I’d like to have more interesting content on this site as well, and spreading out similar posts might help me do that. But, like within a chapter of a story (if only I was writing those RIGHT NOW, right?), I can’t just stop before the chapter ends. I’ll try to set a positive note with this post for the rest of the week! =)

So, I decided that I was not ambitious enough last weekend. Allowing myself to get obsessed with an alternative rock star and spending all day in the room are only going to make me say ‘If only…’ when I listen to songs like ‘The Phrase that Pays’ or much less literal ones like the Taratino version of ‘Pistolero’ that just make me want to be, like, THAT adventurous.

Pistolero – ‘I hate robbing banks!’ *BANG BANG BANG BAM*

Anyway I’m going to go right back to building towards goals. With ambition. The next step is realism. And… the work, of course.

Well, I already worked for 4.5 hours straight on a lab report, with a group. Man, I can work 100% better in groups. Goal 1 – work with others a little more often.

But that’s not going to override my goal to become an efficient self-studier, so I did what the masses will never believe. What my friends will never believe.

I blocked YOUTUBE.

Cr-azy, isn’t it? I survived just fine on facebook and youtube over the summer, but I do better when there are no distractions, and no ‘oh I have to change the song’s every FOUR MINUTES. Sure, Safari still has it, but my computer crashes when I try using it, and I feel no temptation. None whatsoever.

Especially since I got my favorites on my computer already… 😉 Thank you, easy to use iTunes! Now if only you had Asian Kung Fu Generation…

Oh and I blocked CRACKED too. It’s a great site though, especially those posts about public bathrooms, Twilight, hipster-ism, and the 10 most baffling foreign horror movies.

Still have this site to procrastinate on though! Not taking that away!

Back to goals. One of those goals is to go back to my Life List and update it regularly; until then I’ll stick with these shorter term, more specifically ONE term ones:

– Write write write every day + participate in meetings + workshops with the Lit society
– Exercise exercise every day
– Design websites for a club and startup
– Chorus! (Learn rhythms, improve sight-reading…)
– Audition for a small part in this term’s musical
– Help organize social events/activities with Sustainability @ MIT
– Get on top of classes

That’s all just a liiiiitle ambitious for someone who spent their Saturday on their computer, no?

Well, I’ll start with the last – getting on top of classes – then other commitments with the websites, then exercise, and see what happens from there. But now I can’t finish everything at the last minute (or five days late) because I have other things to do.

Unfortunately since I can’t go on youtube (and can’t even see the videos from this site – I KNOW!), I’ll have to end here… with a Yosemite picture! Eventually I’ll figure out the music thing but am short of time right now. Finish problem set time!

Freedom (from my room)… Is Near!

Well, no, I HAVE GOTTEN out my room, done laundry, gone grocery shopping, gone to class, two classes left… and I’m still out of my room! *rejoices*

But there are still these two pesky psets to finish. And a lab report and presentation to work on. Boooo.

So there’s this thing called ADD. That I probably don’t have because I never had big attention problems in classes in high school… (except if you asked my Japanese teacher…)

So what do you call it when, with a problem set to get in hand-in-able form before 4 PM or so (in two hours), when you get back to your dorm to work on it at 2 PM, you say ‘Hey! Maybe I’ll go charge my computer at the piano room for a bit, practice a bit, and get to work’, and then end up practicing about 1 and 1/10 songs for 45 minutes?

And earlier: “Hey I’m going to study. But first, I have to reread that Cracked article about how Zac Efron started ‘the Orwellian horror we live in today.’

And now: ‘Hey I’m going to blog, because maybe increasing my self awareness about my distractability will help me… face it!’

And here I was doing so well (better, like, seriously) until that pset took 20 hours of my life and is still giving me 0 out of 10 points until I hand it in… I never got that stuck on anything I did in DC…

Back to work, time to focus for an hour. (Is story-inspiring music the best choice for this moment though…)

Been in my room for 80+ hours straight… +- a class

*expletive* at my not going to ask more questions at hydrology and *expletive* at my obsession with a freaking singer.

Gotta make a game plan for:

– Getting one website online and doing mockups of another by Wednesday
– Getting a pset done by Monday, then another by Tuesday
– A lab report (or two…) by Tuesday
– Getting over my little problem of solidifying my story’s hero’s past in a way that I like, and well WRITING that whole thing…

And I’m not even doing that much this term! Crazy!

I’m going to post some cool vids I found (that are more my style than that singer’s music I mentioned yesterday… don’t know if I HAVE a style really though, these are quite different) and then go do my laundry. And then go grocery shopping. And then sit SOMEWHERE ELSE to finish these hydrology and ecology psets. For REAL. (And I might have gotten out earlier if THAT MOUSE hadn’t gone into my room and woken and kept me up at 5 IN THE MORNING…)

Rock and Crushes

I’ve been rendered incapable of doing work for the last two days after spending 20 total hours on this pset that I still could not understand (might have 2/3 problems sent in… if they’ll take it…) and then picking up a new obsession like some girls pick up new handbags. I’m not really making a good case for being ‘different’ or ‘immune to superficiality’ in this post, because… I’m not. Quite the opposite. It’s like I’ve never been twelve.

Okay, fine, so once upon a time I WAS twelve… and that year was when I developed my first crush. On a real person. On my soccer team. But BEFORE that? I had a crush on this character from a movie called ‘The Neverending Story’, Atreyu, who was awesome, saved the world, tried to save his horse, and looked like this:

He's just lost his horse.

I think this early crush must have impacted which ones were my future ones, which were few and far between… because what guys today have hair like that? Or faces… hahaha.

Maybe I thought green eyes were crrr-azy when I was twelve and had a crush on someone that looked a bit like Zac Efron, with bangs and – wait, I don’t even know if they were green because I couldn’t look at him straight for more than .000002 seconds. He was a damn good soccer player too. (I was a damn awful one. What? It was little league. We had practice once a week. He was a year older and totally playing at school or something too.)

Speaking of Zac Efron. Oh, gosh. When I was… I don’t even remember, when exactly was High School Musical a big thing? Right before the Bieber thing happened? Say 3-4 years ago, some aunt (yes, my aunt from Puerto Rico of course) gave me a copy of High School Musical for Christmas when I visited. I was resolved to shove them and the first two Twilight books that I had bought, when I thought that Edward was cool (but Jasper was cooler) in the first book and Jacob was cool in the second, before I tried a few pages of ‘The Host’ and realized that all of Stephenie Meyer’s books advocate HELPLESS-INSENSIBLE-BLIND-TO-REALITY love where the heroines profess their undying love to the ‘heroes’ to the point of becoming SUICIDAL because the guy is ‘my love my life’ and ‘being my own person or just HAVING a real personality is overrated, blah blah blah…’, into a dark dark decrepit corner to be rediscovered in a few years and taken to charity. (On second thought maybe we should have found a paper and DVD-recycling center instead…)

Oh, Zac Efron. For some reason, one day when I had absolutely nothing to do and everyone at school had been talking about THAT scene from HSM, I decided to just watch it to see what it was about. Can’t know how something really is, or dismiss it, without seeing it, right?

I made an attempt to start with my mind as a clean slate. Things were going interestingly enough, and I thought, ‘all of these people are the kinds that would get the leading roles in their middle/high school plays’ – you know what I’m talking about. But it was all tolerably watchable. And then…

That basketball song. I think it was ‘Get Your Head in the Game.’ Just remembering the NAME makes me want to pound my own head on something to un-remember… whatever it was. Maybe now that I’m older and stronger I can try to refresh my memory by finding it on youtube…

“Balls bouncing rhythmically”…

See, I was watching this, at sixteen or seventeen and uninitiated to pop culture (I only knew what movie soundtracks were… no, really), pretending I was one of THOSE girls that reads US Weekly or Seventeen and whatever other tabloid or EVEN Nickelodeon/Disney magazines in my spare time instead of watching horror movies and reading things like Lord of the Rings, Count of Monte Cristo, Animal Farm… (not trying to say that those activities are mutually exclusive, I’m trying to save any morsel of dignity that I can out of all that I’ll lose by the end of this post…)

ANYWAY I was all like, ‘Oh cool! A basketball game, that I’ll be cautiously optimistic about and hope will be heartwarming, fun and inspiring like the ones in that Air Bud movie!’ And then… about halfway in…

Wait, they were practicing for a game, what the heck are they doing now???

What’s up with people jerking their heads like those bobbing toys at :35? Maybe it’s just a one-time thing… oh wait, then they KEEP DOING IT TILL THE END.

Zac at 1:30: ‘this is my ARM’

And then they all start DANCING and then they KEEP DANCING FOR THE REST OF THE SONG.

Me: What happened to the FUCKING GAME?

I felt my masculinity being insulted. Wait, I’m not a guy. But I was expecting GUYS to be PLAYING BASKETBALL dammit. I did not need them to start DANCING IN THE MIDDLE OF THEIR VARSITY PRACTICE.

I did finish, but not before pausing the movie and throwing curses at Zac Efron as I took on the role of the avenger of all males that know what basketball is, everywhere and of any orientation. Besides the ‘I love musicals and girls more than this game even while I’m playing it and hey am I showing enough emotion in these GREEN EYES’ type. Besides those.

Man, and then at the end of the movie all the conflicts get immediately resolved, mean girls become suddenly nice for no reason whatsoever, and then everyone sings together like it’s the end of a girl scout meeting with a bunch of ‘I was the lead in EVERY middle school musical I was in!’ people?

All the idol stars in Asia are starting careers in acting, and then suddenly get contracts to do singing, too. Not so common here, but maybe being in a musical might give that actor both directions to choose from. Apparently there was a really popular song from the musicals going around…

Let’s see if he really had gotten any better by that song, ‘Bet on It.’

Starts off, and I can’t decide whether he wants to sound more like someone at karaoke doing Backstreet Boys or NSYNC. (Two bands I like enough for what they were, but…) Not an extraordinary voice, but there are many dance genre singers that aren’t extraordinary singers, with that same degree of auto tune on them.

So okay, he’s (over) acting again, moving his arms and jumping off rocks and getting into lunges as often as he can. And I’m like… why? Where is he? Since I hadn’t seen the movie I have no idea why he’s outside or where he is. And randomly golfing. So he can ‘work on his swing. Do my OWN thang.’

After the first boring 2.5 minutes, when maybe I’m supposed to relate to him or something, like when he looks at his reflection in the water and saying ‘out on my own, it’s such a scary place, ooo-oo-ooh’, I don’t care until the last part where I laugh and go ‘really?’.

Then he slaps the water – like that does anything – and then he goes RUNNING… wait he stops… oh no now he goes running, wait he’s PRANCING ACROSS A FIELD. With an arm pump in the air and then arms like a ballerina. Most of the guys forced to see this have stopped paying attention by this point. The rest are laughing up the theater and getting kicked out by their girlfriends.

So, no crush on Zac Efron, none on Robert Pattinson (what do people SEE in him?). Or almost anyone else in America’s pop or acting scene.

I turned to asian idols, that often sang and acted, and guess what? Some of them could ACTUALLY ACT! So I had relatively small (but fun) crushes on them. And more so on the straight rock stars or actors. I love the show Supernatural, too, and was totally a ‘Sam girl’ and didn’t find Dean ‘my type’ (whatever THAT means) even if he was cute and Jensen an amazing actor. Unfortunately the guy who plays Sam is an actor and 6’4”. He wouldn’t even see me (5’0”) if I went to a fan convention. Also, when Sam’s personality changed and he became more buff and more of a tough person (and lost his bangs), I no longer had a crush on him. (But I’m loving season 7 so far anyway!)

I told my korean roommate last summer all the celeb guys I had these ‘crushes’ on, and how good they acted/sang/played a sport/whatever – some of them were all pretty different – and she was like ‘You know what? I think you just like guys with talent.’

SO HERE FINALLY is the story of my latest crush.

I was watching some rock song on youtube last Thursday evening. Then this song from this alternative rock band called ‘Midtown’ was on the ‘Suggested Video’ bar. I clicked it. And I kind of liked it. Also listened to ‘Give it Up’, really liked the beginning 40 seconds and this part at 2:30 and the rest was ‘okay’ about.

Thought two of the singers were cute, then heard that they broke up in 2005 and one of them went on to start a band called ‘Cobra Starship’. The guy, Gabriel Saporta, is apparently a vegetarian, a PETA activist, and called an awesome guy by Pete Wentz from Fall Out Boy (source wikipedia). I liked DiCaprio after I found out he was an activist, and I like rockers, so this guy looks perfect as a new celeb crush, right?

My first search for Cobra Starship gives me ‘Good Girls go Bad’. I’m all ‘this Midtown guy was the one who did THIS?’ Then I see people saying ‘They were better before! Blah blah blah!’ and decide to check out their first music video from 2005, (Bring It) Snakes on a Plane.

The first half minute I’m comparing the guy (Gabriel) to who he was in Midtown. Dang, he grew up. And spiked his hair. Or something. I’m like, ‘I see why all the commenters were saying he’s attractive…’

But then :44 happens.

Me: WHO THE FUCK IS THAT GUY?

Then there’s :48.

Me: *jaw drops to floor*

1:38.

Me: He can SMILE LIKE THAT TOO?????

Later

Back to :22.

Me: That LOOK!

Gabriel Sa-who? (Should I make a Sam and Dean comparison over this?) All the crushes I’ve had up until now are NOTHING compared to this. Do his legs never end? WHY ARE THEY ALWAYS SO TALL?

I found out that this guy is called William Beckett, he’s 6’3”, and he only did this song with Cobra Starship – he’s actually in this band called ‘The Academy Is…’. If I had been into music when I was in middle and early high school and even heard about them I might have died.

It’s kind of sad to me now, because when I started listening to music at like age 17, all the punk and emo stuff was totally my thing. I like his songs, but I would have LOVED THEM and thought they were the world (before disillusionment with age, etc.) if I had known about them when their first albums came out.

And thank goodness – I’m not really into the dance songs that are played at parties (like the ‘Good Girls go Bad’ one) so I’m not really searching for more Cobra Starship songs. But I could give punk and emo a chance. Hell, Fall Out Boy can be fun (Thnx fr th Mmrs!!!!) even if I’m not obsessed with Pete Wentz.

The Academy Is… I respect their songs from their first album a lot, some from the second, and ‘About a Girl’ from their third is more poppy than I would usually listen to, but is fun enough that I could listen to it all day. They’re not some ground-breaking band from the 70’s, but they’re writing their own music the way they want to because they want to, and I respect them for that. (William Beckett is a great lyricist too.) Kind of like Panic at the Disco’s ‘A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out’ – not a new genre of music, but oh so much FUN. I’m not listening to the songs just cause the guy is the hottest thing ever. (Fine, maybe I’m watching the music videos for that reason though.)

I’m liking this song below the more I listen to it. I especially like the fun, fast-paced chorus. And the instrumental at 3:03 – EPIC.

William in the water… William walking backwards and unbreaking the cake… his VOICE… different from his other songs, but I’m amazed that it’s a good song and that people might actually be listening to this for reasons other than getting another chance to stare at the singer.

After watching all those melo-korean dramas with the dying women (yes, almost ALWAYS the women) and then Supernatural where we never go into a hospital (except for the last episode… go new, different season!), I love this hospital scene the best.

From above: ‘Am I gonna die??? Well, son, death will catch up to us all one day but yours is coming faster than ours…’

For below: I’ll be honest… I like the video + song combo more than the song for ‘About a Girl’. I do like the guitar riff leading up to the chorus – it’s a light, catchy song and pretty easy to really like. But dang, all those close-ups on his face and his eyes that aren’t quite brown but that look red-brown… =O I think they could have picked a girl that looked more interesting and made more realistic facial expressions (can I go back to 2009 and audition? Please?, but she fits the height requirement which is key.

Oh and this video (the one I like from the second, ‘Santi’ album) and the Thnx fr th Mmrs clip… and a shirt and necklace (and hair as always) that remind me of Atreyu… It also makes me wonder if William should have been Sam. Cause singers act, right? Oh wait, that’s just in Asia. And High School Musical.

(I really want to see William and Jared just walking on the street somewhere in LA or Vancouver and have a long-haired, 6’3 to 6’4 stare-off.)

And then, because I’m also partly a stalker (wait! Really?), I decide to look for interviews with him… and how freaking nice and genuine is he? And… he rambles and stutters! O_O *relates (to the rambling and ‘you know’s’ in particular)*

Above: He speaks at 1:12 and 2:05; ‘We’re using it as a metaphor for people that have snakelike qualities’ HAHA

This is why I’ll never find a guy in real life. How do you compete with this guy?

Hopefully getting all these thoughts out will help me stop wasting my time on all this so I can get back to work.

Music to De-Stress when Psetting for 9 hours

This post is really for me, since I’m hungry (had a few handfuls of ‘go-lean’ cereal and an apple and a bit of hummus with like two wheat crackers since I woke up…) and will probably go grab dinner before going to finish this freaking matlab stuff.

Music discoveries! Travel to another world with these (vocal trance, soundtrack, etc.) songs…

I’ll start with the part of Spiderman (the first) that made it my FAVORITE superhero movie, the classic… too bad the sequels ruined the plot (…and the music – A CRIME BEYOND WORDS). This is what dreams are made of.

Here’s Yoko Kanno again with Ghost in the Shell music! (I was bored by the first two episodes I watched though, but I might try Cowboy Bepop?)

Ooo another inspiring one! Childhood memories! Flying~~~~

That’s all for now, dinner and then finish pset-time!

Hello World!

Wow! I’m back after two months of oh so mysterious absence. In those dark times, I finished my summer internship, spent two and a half weeks in China, and started my junior year at college. I dove into all of the new things, setting new goals and leaving this blog behind for a bit. =( I’m back, blog!

I realized something when I spent time spamming out my thoughts and videos on Facebook and used my to-do-list notebook less often than I had when I was living in Washington D.C. I wasn’t really reflecting on my experiences, or setting routines, as well as I had done over the summer. Sure, I got my exercise in – 1-2 hour runs at least 2-3 times a week. My first week back at school, I got up at 5 AM each morning, hit a treadmill or elliptical at 6:30, and went to spinning or yoga at 7 AM. It was pretty crazy. I dreamed about waking up each morning and doing this, and being able to relax and take my time getting refreshed and ready from 8-9:30 or 8-10, with plenty of time to be early to my first class.

I think this is nearly the end of week 4, and cracks are already starting to show. Good to catch them early, right? Don’t know if I had problems getting to classes early, finishing my psets on time, or making my planned class or exercise thing this early any term. (Except maybe last term, when I had kind of given up, and a bit the term before – but I lasted until the end of October.)

So what am I going to do about it? You know, it’s not good to go into a self-pity party and I-hate-my-life-I’m-at-the-hardest-college-in-the-States-and-probably-the-world party at times like this. The only way I can get a handle on it is by writing.

Writing about my goals, my distractions. So today, as I’ve been working 7 hours non-stop on a pset due today (that I missed three classes for) and am emailing in and crossing my fingers about, I took the time to deactivate facebook, get RescueTime, and install a site blocker to keep myself off of facebook, fanfiction.net, livejournal, dramabeans, spoilertv.com, and powerpets. Yes, you heard that right. Powerpets.

Haven’t given up on music yet, and while my productivity might very very slightly increase without it, my endurance would totally plummet, and I wouldn’t be able to get anything done. Music really is a beautiful thing. Getting me through this matlab script that makes me think I’m doing a course 6 or 18 pset instead of freaking hydrology.

Now, then. Writing regularly. I experimented with 750words.com this week and liked it, so I’ll use that when I need to barf out extremely frazzled or crazy thoughts (or write novelll stuff…). I’m thinking about continue to blog, since I’ve noticed I’ve been much more productive when I’ve used blogging as an outlet but also a place to list goals and keep myself accountable, since I’m reporting to, like… the internet. More posts to come, with some interesting adventures and discoveries, and perhaps an attempt to get back onto the ROW challenge and the next writing challenge! When I catch up with everything!

Video of the day (guess which site I HAVEN’T BLOCKED, unlike China) –

Farewell, it’s a new beginning!

Japanese Music!

Why break this daily blogging thing while it’s going strong? And I’m better about blogging now than writing my story because I keep seeing new characters or new ‘group dynamics’ between them every day… right now I have a fantastic three for Part I that will eventually somehow form and expand, it might even be a fantastic five… even before we meet the second protagonist… well at least I can say I’ve worked on CHARACTERS and PLOT DEVELOPMENT?

Today was my last full day of work – tomorrow I’m cleaning my office, picking up my Chinese visa, and coming back for an exit interview. (Quick aside – I think my asian-ness is becoming a bit too obvious because when the girl that did my passport photo asked for cash, I said something like ‘Hold on, I have to look for it or come back later’ and she looked at me for a bit and then said something else. IN CHINESE. So I did what any person that totally understands would do and nodded and said ‘Thank you’ (since I’m pretty sure I would butcher ‘xie xie’))

SO today was my last full day of work so I’m already kinda getting into vacation mode. Since I’ve been at work for 11 weeks straight since the Monday after finals week.

That’s not to say I won’t miss work, as I really enjoyed doing a solid project and loved the busy times and usually only wanted there to be more busy times, as I had practically finished my part a few days before leaving – but OMG FREEEEEEEEEDOOOOOOMMMMM

(And China the week after next – how am I going to survive if I can’t even say ‘xie xie’?)

SOOO I’m getting into VACATION MODE… what does that mean?

That means listening to crazy rock music NONSTOP!

Which I will now share with the world!

I have no idea what’s going on with the person in the video but love the music!

I especially like this MV! Can I be an extra in one of their videos? Please???? I’m sure my friends will volunteer as references for my general insanity in the face of music. (Or maybe just in general)

Not Japanese… so WHAT?

Hahaha Shikamaru… (by the way, is Naruto STILL going? Please say no?)

Different, but how could I not include Monoral here? This is a Japanese band! Or an English-singing band based out of Japan? Just two people? Two geniuses? (The anime in the video – Ergo Proxy, which the song is an OP for – had so much potential. But the characters fell flat. Ahhhhhh what it could have been…)

KPOP boyband singing Japanese! Is it okay that I like their Japanese songs better than, say, ALL of their korean songs? Perhaps because I can understand them more? And they’re faster?

With the exception of their award-winning MV Rising Sun!

Well nowadays I mostly listen to this band (even if the singer can’t really dance in this video… he looks like a rotating tree):

Afraid that I’ll run out of music for my next posts? (Or hopeful? =P) Fear (or hope) not, I am nothing but resourceful! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Feel free to share any music you like, anytime, or just listen if you’d like!

ROW 80 Update – 8-3

So as part of this ROW 80 Writing Challenge all of us have to post updates every Wednesday and Sunday on our progress towards on our writing goals. Mine was to write 500 words – of just my novel – a day. And read a book a week. And I started late – most people started July 4th and I started July 31st – so this is my first “update.”

So how’d I do?

Hahaha. Well.

I blogged every day. Each post was something like 700-1000 words…

I went to work, ran even when it was 95 degrees outside…

Except for today, which I took to do laundry and PACK ahead of time so I’m ready when I go back to my home and leave DC on Saturday (after a traumatic packing experience in which I had less than a week’s notice that I’d gotten a job and had to empty my DORM room in one day… or should I say an afternoon till 5:30 AM…) (I did walk for an hour to come back from work though!)

I have also been thinking about my novel and making some decisions about character development, and sat at my computer for half an hour trying to write more than 300 words from one day…

Let’s just say that my writing goal might have been too ambitious for this week.

(I think part of the problem is that I’ve planned out so many scenes and I’m trying to write scenes that I haven’t ‘seen’ in my head or planned out completely yet, because they happen ‘first’. Tonight I’m going to try telling the story of this character I just thought of weeks ago, who I can visualize and whose scenes I can ‘feel’ right away, if this makes sense…)

BUT I’m keeping it as it is now, because of this:

To get into the routine of exercising regularly (5-6 days a week), I had to tell myself to exercise EVERY DAY first. Did that for almost two weeks, before I read somewhere that you had to take breaks. The week before I started on that? After a month of no exercise at all? I went running outside, a grand total of three times in a week. And did quite a bit of walking. I see that week now as my ‘transition’.

If I want to be a serious writer, I need to make myself work on this novel (as in the writing CRAFT and not just the plot) every day. So I see this week as my own ‘transition period’ – we’ll see how long it takes until I get in the hang of it. Today I’m working on at least 500 and up to 2000 words… but I won’t go crazy trying to catch up at this point. Slow and steady wins the race? Mayyyyyybe?

Time to read other ROW 80 updates, dry my laundry, and start writing!

(this music below would be like the background to the climatic scenes that I’m probably going to write tonight – yes, even that ending part fits! – if only I had the as much skill in writing as Yoko Kanno does in composing…)

“Fitness Personality Colors”

Wow, I’ve been really blog-happy the last few days, but since I’m in a bit of a rut with my story (that I plan to have five more pages done of… by tomorrow morning…), I thought I’d just do a quick post to share something I found. About EXERCISE.

So I get email updates from Care2, which is this site that might be the most hippie one that’s ever existed. Even more so than Grist and the Sierra Club (which I also get email updates from… ONE DAY SOON I’ll do an ‘environmental’ post…)

One of the headlines in a newsletter I opened was “What is Your Fitness Color?” I was like “Oooo Fitness! Colors!” So I clicked it.

Usually the articles on Care2 veer towards common sense advice, motivational articles, ‘be good and true to yourself and the planet,’ etc., but this was one article that I found a bit more interesting. Mostly because I’m curious about personality-type tests.

Anyway the article gives you one of eight colors based on your four-letter personality type (example EFTP – if you want more information or want to find your ‘type’ you can go here or search for Myers-Briggs as that’s just a random one – I think most people have seen this in school or the web already though). Then based on that color, it tells you what types of exercise habits (consistently? spontaneously?) and types (with others? alone? focused? with music?) you would be ‘happiest’ with. There was a page for each color, so the entire article is 10 pages.

I fall in the Saffron color range, and according to the article that means I am motivated by ‘music’ and ‘play’ and like doing exercise spontaneously. It recommended that I find exercise places near home AND work, so I can go when I’m ‘in the mood’ (ahem… that is just SPOT ON me for doing ANYTHING), and that I take classes with music like group cycling, yoga, and dancing.

So what do I think of the article, and its usefulness and practicality??

I think that it is a very beneficial starting point for someone who’s just getting into the habit of exercise, but is afraid of feeling ‘bored’ or unhappy with what they are doing. Running on treadmills isn’t the only option. I also think it might open up your eyes if you’re already exercising, but don’t realize why you were more motivated doing some activities than others, or maybe can’t choose, or maybe even want to switch up your routine – self-awareness is always good. Almost all exercise-focused magazines today focus on how to get those perfect abs, or race a half marathon, burn the most calories in 15 minutes, or lose ten pounds – I don’t think I’ve actually seen an article that takes people’s exercise preferences or personalities into account. Some people get fit doing pilates and no running, some people backpack all the time, and some do a combination of activities. It’s not like there’s one perfect routine for everyone. Even all the busy corporate workers with no time. What about the ones that can’t stand the gym, or can’t work out consistently alone?

Anyway. This article is also only just that – a starting point. It’s not the end-all be all, and it’s not complete advice. “Saffrons” like me find purpose in life by putting some discipline into it, which means making ourselves work out X days a week even if we don’t initially ‘feel like it.’ And running (…with my headphones) as well as weight-training and sometimes elliptical have helped me and become my favorite forms of regular exercise. We all have weaknesses, and I wanted to work on my accountability by working out, and being THE person that makes sure I work out, not only doing classes (I do some pilates too! =D) – and running has helped me do that. Maybe I also like it because I think of Slumdog Millionaire when the kids sprint like CHEETAHS away from everyone and I’m like “I want to be like THEM!”… so running makes me feel adventurous… and playful? At least that part of the article applies?

Bottom line: Check out the article and find your fitness color, but don’t restrict yourself to the activities they suggest for your color! Think about what motivates you to run and use that to help you achieve your own goals!

And in general, personality tests should be taken with a few grains of salt, but they are still FUN and thought (or debate) provoking! =)

Workout-playlist-worthy music video time! Never enough FLOW!

Work+Concentration+Internet+Goals!

Look at who can FOCUS ON ONE TOPIC!!!!!!!

Hahaha just kidding. I’ll break this down.

This is basically a ‘ahhh… surviving WORK’ post and a ‘I spent too much time on the internet yesterday!’ post in one. But also a Life List Club and ROW 80 -related post. I was going to have links here to each different part of this post but am having trouble with the HTML… =/ Feel free to skip or skim!

Work + Concentration

Today I had a reaaaaalllly hard time concentrating at work. This is my eleventh and last week of my internship, in which I’ve organized this Metro bus wash monitoring project – largely independently, doing research and visiting sites on my own without too much orientation (except for one very helpful mentor who knows all about controllers!). Sometimes I had reports or a presentation to do, oftentimes I was on the phone asking salespeople for specifications or quotes, and at one point I was even doing water testing – in our three-foot square temporary kitchen in the office… =)

However this week I just have two deliverables – a last project report with instructions on how the project should be continued when I’m gone, and a Powerpoint presentation with that same information. I was planning to have that report done by today… but I. could. not. focus. It was really strange. I usually work with my headphones on, my email accounts open, and maybe before 9 or around lunch check out a fun site for a few minutes or chat (we have an hour for ‘lunch’ and we can adjust our hours… well, by ‘we’ I mean ‘I’ as I’m now the only intern in the office, with just two project managers…). But I have goals for the day in mind, write them down, break them down, and get them done. Each day.

Maybe the ‘finishing up’ part is the hard part for me. If I was going to continue to be involved in the project, I think I would be getting this out-of-the-way faster so that I could… DO STUFF! Like PROGRAM! INSTALL THINGS! Find INTERESTING data and ANALYZE IT! But this isn’t really a ‘final report’ as much as a ‘progress report,’ but it’s my own ‘final report’ – I guess I find it hard to finish something that doesn’t seem finished to me. Even though what would count as ‘finished’ (or at least result-worthy) to me will need even more weeks of time and installation – weeks after I leave. And if I finished that report today, and that presentation Tuesday, what would I do for the rest of the week? (Edit them. Add to them. Discuss them with my supervisor and mentor. Duhhh. Tell that to my subconscious or whoever calls the shots around here.)

Finishing things has ALWAYS been difficult for me, though. I kind of wonder why. Whether it’s taking a social research project past the research level, planning an environmental club at MIT, designing posters for the UA Sustainability Committee at MIT, getting exercise groups at my living group organized – I’ve entered each with enthusiasm and found my feet stuck in cement when it came to pulling them through. If there’s a ‘Just FINISH IT Group’ in the blogger-sphere… take me THERE.

Well, I am finishing my report TOMORROW (Tuesday – leaving early to FINALLY get my visa to China as well!), and the presentation by Wednesday/Thursday. Despite my short time here, it will feel AMAZING when I am finished with my part of the project!

Internet + Goals (update!) This weekend I somehow had too much time on my hands, and wandered all around the internet. Around blogs, in particular. This is how I discovered the “Life List Club” and “ROW 80” – two groups that encourage people to make goals and give support in the forms of posts and comments. And that’s why I went a little crazy yesterday and started my own “Life List Club” page and “ROW 80” page (the latter is a writing challenge). And I don’t regret it one single bit. That statement will probably have more weight when I say it on say September 22nd (the end of ROW 80) or July 31st, 2012 (the end of the first 12 months of my “Life List” – and my first set of goals). I encourage everyone to check out both clubs – Life List Club and ROW 80 – and try them out!

I thought I’d just give an update for my first day for both, not that I’ll be updating these lists daily:

Life List Club – I’m planning to add ‘drink 8 glasses of water a day’ and ‘sleep 8 hours a day.’ I think in junior (or senior?) year in one class, when my English (or government?) teacher asked what the most valuable lesson we had learned over the summer was, one girl said “Drink water. Trust me. It is SO important. It CHANGES YOUR LIFE.” Did I listen? Of course not. But I remembered. Water has helped me soooooo much here – every day is better with enough water.

And the same goes for sleep. When I was trying out rugby last spring at school, even though I wasn’t quite in shape, with ten hours of sleep I had enough energy to be involved for my whole B-side game (and awkwardly block the forwards while I was at it because I was a n00b and didn’t know where to go… ANYWAY…)

Got to work half an hour late (one of my goals is to be on time) – we technically do not have strict hours so it did not realllly matter – the reason was that I packed my food and left it and had to buy food on the way >.< New goal: ‘REMEMBER YO STUFF?’

ROW 80 – I planned for 500 words a day and have 287 from yesterday. Plus (not including) this snippet I wrote while trying to get started:

Hello world…

Today be the first day this girl woman specimen thing here err-writes for this here err-challenge-err when she’ll be writing 500 words a day. 500 words a day folks? That right there is almost as frightenin’ as that ol’ Jack Sparrow thinger come to life agi’n man. But she insists she c’ do it, ’tis only a paaai~ge (or two paiges double spaced methinks laddie?). So what can I tell ya. Notin’ I can do ‘ere ‘cept sit ‘n watch ‘n wince ‘n chew me tabacco or bark cause they’re cheap ’round these isles an’… “SHUT UP I’M ACTUALLY DOING THIS!!!”

So anyway… I got work done, but I still need to get in the habit of creating SCENES. And writing all the back-story. Without just barfing out exposition. How does 723 words tonight sound? Possible? Feasible? Maybe not really… since I have an oovoo call with friends, and am getting out of work early tomorrow, I’ll do some tonight and catch up tomorrow. WooHOO!

(Just started using this wordpress spell-check thing and it doesn’t like me much at all, especially my talking to myself and my WooHOO’s, oops…)

All right, end of updates! MUSIC TIMEEEEEEE