I don't want to believeSat, 27th Oct '07, 8:15 pm::
People that know me well, know well enough that I am completely devoid of any beliefs, faith, superstitions, and paranormal inclinations. I don't believe in ESP, ghosts, mythical creatures, or UFOs. I don't "believe" in science, rather I have a good foundation in scientific theory and principles with a pretty decent understanding of the universe we live in. I don't claim to know or understand everything and so even if I don't know what caused the Big Bang, I'm perfectly fine with my lack of scientific explanation for it. Regardless of all of this, my entire past week has been pretty damn weird.
I woke up last weekend and sent this to Tay online: "I had a dream that I was vacationing in Gujarat (a state in India) in the Gir Forest lodge house, surrounded by tigers and lions. My family was there, so were you, Anthony..." I didn't get into detail since he was leaving but the dream wasn't about the lions attacking us. They were trying to get inside the lodge to get away from something. Two days later, I came across this tragic article online: "Five Lions electrocuted by poachers in India." I hadn't seen any documentaries about Gir in a long time. I hadn't watched any Animal Planet or Discovery shows about big cats nor read any Nature articles. This was completely out of the blue. Color me spooked.
The rest of the week was full of little coincidences, too many to list. Today turned out to be yet another unusual day. I don't know what's in the air but for some reason, I was treated extremely nicely when I went to the grocery store, deli, and then later at a Chinese food place. I know everyone has days when people seem extra nice (or extra mean) but I'm talking double free food from a fast-food chain run by Pepsi. People were so nice today that I kept wondering if something was wrong with me.
A few minutes ago, I finished my food and started reviewing the stats for Chime.TV. I was about to lament that the growth is not accelerating at the expected pace when I popped open a fortune cookie to find these words: "They will be grateful that you cared enough to make it."
Like I said, I don't believe in anything. I don't believe I am here for a purpose, I don't believe everything happens for a reason. I do know that I have managed to overcome some pretty tough hurdles with support from my loved ones and a ton of luck. Lots of strange things happen in my life that I can't seem to explain. However, the fact that I don't understand why something happens, doesn't mean I am going to believe it happened because of some mystical miraculous reason. Life is just plain weird.
Little stories we tellMon, 22nd Oct '07, 12:25 am::
There doesn't seem to be anything similar between the two movies I watched today, I Heart Huckabees and Reservoir Dogs. Both are awesome movies that I highly recommend watching more than once. One little bit in both films that I never noticed before, caught my attention today - personal anecdotes. "An anecdote is a short tale narrating an interesting or amusing biographical incident."
Personal anecdotes are the little stories we tell others to give them a glimpse into the world as we experience it from our point of view. I would not be the same person today without my teeth-gnashing story about how I nearly lost my opportunity to come to the US in 2000 because I clicked the stupid "Reply" button in an email instead of "Forward." My dad would not be the same person without his story of how he ran away from home in this teens but was caught by an employee at my grandpa's company. We repeat our stories to every new crowd. We talk about that one time we got so drunk in Europe that we had to be taken to a hospital and almost missed our flight. When stories are really embarrassing, we only tell them to four people - one coworker that won't tell others, one friend from school who is already privy to a lot worse, one ex-girlfriend who is still amazed by our antics, and one stranger we're standing next to in a pub because hey, who is he gonna tell?
I blog my stories. I call up people and tell them myself. I wait for the right topic to come up at lunch before I can unleash my harrowing accounts from times begone. I tailor my narrations to best suit each particular audience. When repeating the same story to my mom, the girl with no clothes is nowhere in the tale. When reiterating it to my buddy, she is the center of discussion for a good 30 minutes. Stories change over time and usually get larger than life. The little computer nuisances I caused for my internet provider in 1999 can become incidents of nation-wide system meltdown brought about by yours truly after a drink or two today. I exaggerate and if you think you don't, you're full of crap.
This doesn't mean we're all habitual liars. Life doesn't always happen the way we want it to. That girl didn't give me her number, just her email. That guy didn't tell you that you were the best singer he's ever heard, just that you were pretty good. What we wanted to happen was a little more than what did happen. So my damned stories are going to end with the girl giving me her number and you can tell your grandkids that the guy thought you were an opera singer. Why? Two words: Big Fish. This is the next movie on my list. If you've seen this movie, you'd know the power of good story-telling.
I'm so proud of my partner-in-chime/crime Tay. Here's an interview where he talks about everything from web design to Chime.TV, from his music sites to his idea of the future of the web. It's so weird knowing someone personally with all their little flaws and habits and then seeing how super cool they really are when someone else points it out. Tay recently helped redesign/relaunch the popular music site Hype Machine with the ever-so-brilliant Anthony. Here's a wonderful article about the relaunch. I absolutely love the new design and I did my part by coding up some Flash stuff for it.
I'm definitely biased when I say this but one of the best features about the new Hype Machine is the sidebar video player. If you search for any music artist, say The Beatles on Hype, it loads 50 Beatles videos via Chime.TV. The songs play non-stop in the usual Chime.TV style and you can hit full-screen too. Like I said, I'm biased about this feature because it's my little embedded player getting some love from a wider audience. Overall, I love how wonderfully Hype has integrated so many different music blogs, mp3s, artist pages, and music video search.
It's good to know my buddies made something so useful and beautiful.
Sometimes I forget how awesome I am. I'm going to sit in my chair all day, recollecting all the wonderful things about me. It's not just me, lots and lots of people I know are really awesome. I think everyone should take some time off from their busy lives and have a little introspection-retrospection session to realize how cool they all are. Go ahead. Take an hour off from whatever you're doing. Sit back and reminisce away.
I've been really busy at work lately and will remain so till the end of this year. I doubt I'll have much time to 'blog in length till '08.
Top Ten Kickass Things about Growing OlderThu, 4th Oct '07, 12:05 am::
Today I turn 27 years old. Last year when I hit 26, I "hit" 26. I was no longer a young kid and wasn't looking forward to growing old. Now, I turn 27 and I couldn't be more optimistic. What's not to love about growing older anyway? Here's my...
Top Ten Kickass Things about Growing Older
- Wine keeps getting finer
- Loans to repay keep getting smaller
- Hairstyle keeps getting less critical
- Music collection keeps getting larger
- Embarrassments keep turning into good memories
- Good memories keep getting fonder
- Bad memories keep fading away
- Being cool keeps becoming less important
- Weight keeps becoming a useless number
- Bonds of love and friendship keep getting stronger
I'm smiling that I'm 27 now. I can't wait till I'm 35.
If you like geeky/office comedies, you're gonna love the TV show IT Crowd. It's one of the funniest things I've seen in a while. Click the play button below to start with the first episode and then hit the full-screen button on the bottom-right corner of the video.