Thursday, July 30, 2009

Scary Memories

Here is my second post about scary stuff! This post too, was inspired by a "This American Life" podcast. In the podcast the narrator is explaining how he was afraid of practically everything.  At night these fears kept him from going to the bathroom, so instead he decided to pee in various places such as the carpet or the rug in his grandmas nearby room. I myself can relate to having been so scared of the dark that it caused me to wet the bed until much later than usual. However, the podcast brought to mind a nightmare I had as a child that also explained my dislike of Michael Jackson.

Recently with Jackson's death I've pondered why so many people "loved" him and I, a lover of the Jackson Five and music in general could never warm up to him as a solo artist. The revelation I had after listening to the podcast suddenly answered that question. I suddenly remember the content of that traumatizing dream 20 years after the fact.

The essence of the nightmare can be explained by a hybrid of the following two videos. The setting was hall that separated my room from the bathroom. You have to understand the hall was lined with mirrors so it made everything doubly terrifying. The night mare occurred shortly after seeing Michael Jackson's Thriller and this Sesame Street video. In my night mare Michael Jackson is wearing the same red jacket and although he doesn't turn in to a were-cat and he is dancing in the hall with alligators. The vision of that nightmare was so terrifying that I dared not transverse the hall to the bathroom. As I have grown older I had forgotten the nightmare, stopped wetting the bed and even grew out of my fear of the dark- maybe not completely, but I am a lot less scared than I used to be. However my dislike of Michael Jackson remained. I am glad I finally pinpointed where my dislike originated and only hope in my mind Michael can Rest In Peace.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Fear and scary stuff and things

I've never had any real theme to my blog other than the usual self aggrandizing pictures, but for the next couple of posts I am going to write about scary stuff! Well, I should clarify, I will be writing about stuff that is scary to me. Here's the inaugural post:

This morning I went jogging before work and decided to listen to my i
pod. I usually jog without it as I think that it is a little unsafe on roads with no sidewalk and I am more prone to ignore what my scenic surroundings. However, today these surrounding lost there usual charm and the sounds that I usually associate with small animal frolicking through the woods along side the road turned into sinister forewarnings of potential predators. What you may be asking yourself cause this dramatic perspective shift?

This American Life!

Today I justified listening This American Life on my ipod while jogging because it's not blarring music and I would only wear one earphone, thus leavi
ng my other ear free to hear oncoming cars, small creatures, pedophiles, rapist and the usual jogger threats. The last few items have always been on the list but the story I was listening to pushed them to the top.

The story I was listening to was titled Pro Se. The first story on the podcast was about a boy who had critically harmed a homeless man and claimed he was mentally ill to avoid going to a normal jail. He heard that psychiatric hospital are cushier, so he proceeded to described heinous ideations, most of them based on horror or thriller movies he had seen. Well, the authorities did think he was crazy so they sent him not to just any psychiatric hospital but Broadmoor, the place where they send the most "dangerous" criminals, the serial killers, pedophiles, etc.

The story was really interesting and has some insight into the power of stigma and perception but I am afraid that even as I write this the more powerful idea and feelings are paranoia and fear. Especially as they described the acts of his fellow inmates while eerie music played in the background. In the end the psychiatrist and psychologists didn't believe this boy was mentally ill in the way he pretended, but instead they diagnosed him with a psychopathic personality disorder. By the end of the story the matter is unresolved but what is certain- that is the fastest I have jogged in a long time and I won't be jogging with my ipod anytime soon.

Stay tuned for more eery stories...


Friday, July 17, 2009

Banjos and Birthdays

I am officially in my late twenties.Mmid twenties only lasts from 24-26 but I turned 27 last Saturday. It was a great day and turned out to be a lot more eventful and fun than I anticipated and a lot less traumatic than turning 26 last year in Utah.  It actually started Friday evening when Emily and David invited me to dinner in Virginia. We went to a great restaurant and filled up on naan, chicken tikka, some lamb curry and Lassis. YUMMY! 

Saturday morning Dana and I took off to a Banjo festival at Tacoma Park. The great thing about the Tacoma Park is it has a lot of eclectic second hand shops that made for some fun browsing. Not only was the day full of banjos but amazing food starting with Thai food in China Town followed by frozen yogurt and a cup cake. 

I thought that would be the end of my birthday fun but when we returned home Kathy and Dave had bought a cake and some presents for me and we had a yummy birthday meal. It meant a lot to me as well the birthday wishes I received via mail, facebook and phone. Thanks everyone and here's to another year. 

I really need to get me one of these shirts, perhaps minus the floral print pants.

A real Banjo Player!

Dana and I with "the cake". We decided 27 candles was a fire hazard and went with just 1.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

4th of July

Jamestown, located on Jamestown Island in the Virginia Colony, was founded on May 14, 1607.[1] It is commonly regarded as the first permanent Englishsettlement in what is now the United States of America, following several earlier failed attempts, including the Lost Colony of Roanoke. It was founded by the London Company (later to become the Virginia Company), headquartered in London. Located in James City County when it was formed in 1634 as one of the original eight shires of Virginia, Jamestown was the capital of the Colony for 83 years, from 1616 until 1698. At that time, the capital was relocated to Middle Plantation, about 8 miles (13 km) distant. (That small community, which had also become home to the new College of William and Mary in 1693, was renamed Williamsburg in 1699).

I was stoked to see the Powhatan Village at Jamestown because the brochure we received upon entrance had a dishy-looking Native American. To my utter disappointment the camp was staffed not by Native Americana at all but by Caucasian females wearing Native American garb. The place did have some cool ships to tour.

We went to Williamsburg for the 4th of July to see the 13 cannon salute. Coming from Utah where the fourth of July means Stadium of Fire and a parade it was nice to see the more historic side of Independence day. They did a salute for each of the original 13 states, played the state song and shot a cannon for each . Here is the first paragraph of Wikipedia's Williamsburg entry and some pictures. 

Colonial Williamsburg is the historic district of the independent city of Williamsburg, Virginia. It consists of many of the buildings that, from 1699 to 1780, formed colonial Virginia's capital. The capital straddled the boundary of two of the original shires of VirginiaJames City Shire (nowJames City County), and Charles River Shire (now York County). For most of the 18th century, Williamsburg was the center of government, education and culture in the Colony of Virginia. It was here that Thomas JeffersonPatrick HenryJames MonroeJames MadisonGeorge Wythe,Peyton Randolph, and dozens more helped mold democracy in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the United States.