Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The GG

The Great Gasby, a timeless classic that has been read by vast amounts of people. I watched the latest film interpretation of it tonight, starring Tobey Maguire and Leonardo DiCaprio. An Amber post was inevitable I'm afraid, so here it is.

We have barely spoken over the last few months. She had an exhibition recently, which she has been prepping for pretty much the whole year. Throw in some crazy college work and you have one really busy woman. So I know why things have been so quiet, but I'm still a little bit disheartened by just how quiet things have been. I haven't told her yet that my dad has cancer, but I make a point of not going out to tell people because I don't want to seem like I'm seeking attention or anything like that. Its a family battle, and I only tell those who actually seem to care how my dad has doing. Needless to say, Amber has not so much has spoken to me much, let alone enquired about my dads health and such. Regardless, she knows my dad and I thought that she should know. I wasn't about to message straight up though, saying what his status and all that is.

I tried to start a conversation a few weeks ago, something along the lines of how shes doing and so on. I honestly had the intention of just talking about her exhibition to get a talk going. Yet when asked how she was she said she was stressed and didn't want to talk about her exhibition. I pushed a little, at least finding out the date, how she feels about it etc. Then she really said she doesn't want to talk about it, to which I asked what topic would suit her. She apologised, said she was tired and was going to bed. So yeah I tried, but to no avail. I did consider trying again in the following weeks, but I just felt like I was being an inconvenience in her life, so decided against it.

Her exhibition night came, and I finally got to see its awesomeness (which it genuienly was). I really don't have much money to spend lately, so I felt super depressed that I couldn't support her by getting a piece or two. I really would have bought two specific pieces if I had the money because I loved them. It was good to see just how her hard work paid off, and everybody seemed to love all the material she had produced. That aside, that was the first time I had seen her in months. We barely spoke to each other. From my side, I just didn't know what to say. I feel like an utter stranger, spectating this new Amber with her friends like I'm an outsider. At one point we were kind of forced to interact. She found my feet under the table and pressed down on them with hers. I don't know if I was supposed to respond or anything, but I kept my legs dead still. Thinking on it now, I wish I had maybe responded just a little. Still, unexpected from her and I have no idea how I should have interpreted that. Also, she hugged me properly when saying hello and goodbye. Its still a touchy subject for me, because if I don't get a proper hug like a normal human being, I'd rather just not hug at all. It was a little suprising admittedly.

Following the exhibition, she is on holiday now. The only reason I have not asked to go out or anything is because quite frankly, I'm tired of being shut down. So I left the ball in her court, hoping she would make the plans to see me when she is free. The thing is, I would cancel anything to see her, and make the time to do it if needed. I know I am second in line for whatever her life requires, I am the ex boyfriend after all. Its just the way I feel though, and I wish I could change it. Anyways, I did tell her she must let me know when she wanted to do coffee or movies or something. She finally asked to go to a movie and coffee, and tt really made me happy, thinking I would finally get some alone time to just chat to her and just talk.

Of course, there is always a goddam spanner. Gareth got back from scaling Kiliminjaro on the same day, and Amber kindly informed me that she had invited him to come with to movies. I really shouldn't have anything against that, but so much for the social time, whenever they are together I become a third wheel. Throw in a bunch of others, and I fade into non existence. Much like her exhibition, we barely spoke to each other. I suppose I should just accept that she doesn't want to be close to me anymore, and move on with my life. I mean, you would think that after knowing each other for six to seven years, we would be at least decent friends (even after the relationship which ended yeeeeears ago). Unfortunately, I think I am delusional and I should stop expecting her to see me as some part of her life. Even if I have tried my best to be there for her, support her, etc through the ups and downs (some of which may of course been caused by me in the first place), I guess I can't expect her to acknowledge me forever.

The reason I bought The Great Gatsby into this, is because I sometimes think that I hold some of the dreams Gatsby had. That elusive green light, the promise of the perfect American South African dream. He goes out of his way, builds himself up and builds a life around him for Daisy. If you know the story, read on. If you plan on reading or watching it, skip this paragraph to avoid plot spoilers. In short, Gatsby dies chasing his dream and trying to please Daisy. She forgets about him and moves on with her "perfect" life. Sure he might be delusional, ignoring Nick when he is told, "you can't recreate history." Yet he does try to recreate that history, leading to his sad demise.

I honestly see myself in that way to a certain extent. I have genuinely made sacrifices to make Amber happy, to try please her as much as possible (and even now trying to stay out of her way so I don't make her sad or inconvenience her), yet it seems like it has all been for null. I barely exist, and she is going to move on with her life with some Tom Buchanan. I don't know if we would ever be able to recreate the love we had, or even if she could ever feel the same for me as I do for her. That green light of mine may only just be a dream, something unattainable. Years and years of this crap, and here I am still talking about it. I must be a sucker for hope, because I guess I will always hope that one day she may see the light.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Since You've Stuck Around

ERMAGERD! Two consecutive posts!

Well heres something unusual. We all know that I like to think that dreams really carry some sort of significance, and that if we could remember every tiny detail, we could possibly connect each scene in our dreams to something past, present or future. I seldom have nightmares, in fact I don't know when is the last time I had one. By nightmare I mean one of those dreams that has you stressing and waking up in a cold sweat. I haven't had one of those in years.

Last night I had a strange dream. My exams are over and done with, but I did stress quite a bit for my two communication exams. The results are out anytime now, and I dreamt that I failed one of my modules. It was a lot to study for that exam (although I did leave it a little late as usual) and after the exam I sat and calculated the marks I was pretty certain I had obtained. I think I was pretty sure of about 50% of the paper, the pass I needed. In my dream I got a silly 49% overall, 1% short of a pass. I was utterly disgusted.

Imagine my shock and utter joy that morning when I logged on to check if any marks had been released, and I see that I got a freaking 99% mark. This is for a written exam, something that I'm just like O_O about. I'm not posting this here to brag, but merely to illustrate that I am somehow capable of doing some impressive stuff if I put my mind to it. You may or may not know this, but I have next to no self confidence in some of my abilities, and this mark means more to me than people can understand. Not the numerical value, but the fact that I am capable, and I can do this.

Hell, I'm an english major, and I'm sure you've noticed that my writing is riddled with some horrible gramamr and typos. I doubt myself, wondering if I will ever be able to produce anything of value. English at varsity level isn't necassarily difficult, but its really difficult to get a really good mark. I got 71% overall for my one module, and that probably made me feel better than my 99% mark did.

I still have stories to tell and stories to write. I am 25, a quarter century, and my life has yet to take off. I will do it, I know I will. If all goes according to plan and I have passed all my outstanding modules, then I will have officially finished second year. One more year to go, as I embark on my third year of study. I'm capable, and that dream of an English and Communication Degree is within my grasp :) It will feel so good to be finished, so good to have it. My stories will be told, whether I have a silly piece of paper or not. I think its more for me though, to show myself that I am capable.

Thomas Was Alone: A True Gem The World Should Experience


Telkom has been absolutely shocking lately. I have literally spent the last hour trying to log into my blog so I can spit out a post. Why am I so insistent? I have this awesome track that I have been listening to for said hour, and I must share it with you, whoever or wherever you are.

Thomas Was Alone is an indie game that I received from one of my friends. Briefly (my own defintion), an indie game is basically a game that isn't backed by a fat budget or huge gaming companies. It is a game made by a very small, independent studio, sometimes one or two people alone. Thomas Was Alone as far as I know, was a flash game made by Mike Bithell. I don't know his success story, but I know that said flash game was turned into a fully fledged gem, and a game that has affected me in ways I cannot comprehend.

The premise is simple, you initially control a little red block called Thomas, and you have to travel through each stage to get to a portal on the other side. Heres the thing though, Thomas may be a block, but he has more personality than most people I know in real life. How does a block have personality? Thomas and his quest are narrated quite beautifully, and the narrator does a fantastic job of telling us just how Thomas is feeling and what he is thinking about.

Move along a few levels and you bump into a few different blocks of different shapes and sizes, possessing their own unique personalities and such. Each block also has their own unique set of skills. Claire for example, is the blue square who has super powers! Or at least so she thinks, she merely has the ability to float on water, but that is a super power to her nonetheless. You can only control one block at a time, but you help each other along to reach the portal at the end of the level.

These blocks say didly squat, but you hear what each are feeling thanks to the narrator. You will not believe just how attached you will become to these characters. It is a short game admitedly, taking me only three hours to clock. I finished 85% of this game in one sitting, from about 23:30 till 02:00. I couldn't stop, and I just wanted to make sure that everybody made it to safety. Proof that a game doesn't need big budget or fancy schmancy visuals to impart or invoke emotions such as this one did in me.

What really drives the emotion though is the truly fantastic soundstrack. All composed by David Housden (amazing work dude), it makes the game what it is, sealing it as an epic adventure and making the player smile like an idiot throughout the duration (I could swear I've used this line before somewhere, but hey if the boot fits). One track in particular has been stuck in my head for the last few days. I can forget about it, but merely glancing a thought on it has it back in my eardrums, calming me and making me smile. I youtubed it and to my delight I found a thirty minute extended version. You might think, "THIRTY MINUTES OF THE SAME TUNE?" Yeah I was also like wow... but I have listened to it nearly a dozen times. I just play it and leave it looping in the background. It inspires me and makes me feel like I can do anything. Those damn chimes or whatever they are reverbrate in my heart when I go to sleep and they welcome me when I wake up. I'm quite attached to it, and I don't expect you will feel the same when you hear it. Maybe it reminds me just how much I loved Thomas and his pals, and their quest to fight the system and instil some change :)
Here it is for your listening pleasure:
Don't sit and stare at your screen while listening to it. Crank up that volume and go find a book to read or some work to do. Just let it play and soak your eardrums in the beauty of it all. If you have the time (and even if you don't), if you are a gamer (and even if you are not), I'd highly recommend this game. It is only $10 on Steam, it will only take three hours of your life, and it will make your day that much brighter. There is hope for narrative and good story telling. I hope I can contribute and keep this dream alive!


About Me

My photo
South Africa
BA English and Communication graduate. I like to write stuff!