HobbyHarri











{July 26, 2012}   Oh God I Did It Again

It’s exactly one month and about 2 days since my last post. One friggin’ month! Ugh. So as I have so eloquently shown, anti-procrastination techniques are not very useful. I’d also like to take this moment to say that spot treatments don’t work either, seriously, none of them. In fact the best result I’ve had so far in fighting acne involved squeezing a bag of oats on my face. Explain that dermatology (how can it be a science?!).

Well, despite no blogs, cool stuff has actually happened, so here’s the short & short of it all:

1) I passed the exam I failed. You heard me. So however that happened, it means I no longer have to spend my holiday revising & then retaking that exam. Babooshka.

2) I acted in a short film – an end of year project for a nearby film college. Rediscovered the joy of getting involved in these sorts of things and how desperately I want to work in TV or film for a living. That being said I really don’t want to show you it. I’m not ashamed of it or unproud or embarrassed or anything, it’s just… it’s me. Me not being me, and I can’t tell how good I was at doing that, so that’s weird. But seeing as this blog’s all about being open & honest all the time, here it is; http://vimeo.com/44204700

3) My brother’s gone adventuring in South America. He’s filming the inca rally, an 8,000 km charity race from Peru to Guyana. Except it’s not really a race – it’s more like an exploratory adventure with the route as a general guide. Actually, it’s like those Top Gear episodes where they land somewhere foreign & try to get to the destination while steaming through gorgeous scenery, fixing car problems the local way and staying at un-English hotels where they offer guinea-pig on the menu, all with the vague idea that you’re actually competing against the other drivers. Oh yeah, and for charity. You can check it out here; http://theincarally.com/ And all of this he’s done pretty much entirely under his own steam. Wow. To celebrate the awesome, here’s Odin:

 

4) I’ve secured a good flat for next Uni year – the first one I saw turned out to be the only one I needed to see. Great location, good price, at least twice the size as my last place and with the most amazing kitchen I’ve seen outside of TV land. It’s so good, so much better, and mine! I’m gonna be a master baker in no time flat! Wait, that sounded wrong.

And lastly 5) I discovered the funniness that is Tina Fey. 30 Rock has been added to my list of favourite TV shows ever. Super funny lady! Man, those are rare.

And, it looks like I’ll be doing a bit more acting this weekend. More on that later :}

Until next time, ta ta! xox

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{February 13, 2012}   Catching Up & Valentine’s

My world has been lagging a bit recently – but no more! *Superhero pose*

 

I’m training myself to have more energy and drive during the days by gradually setting my alarm earlier & earlier. I’m only getting up at 8:30 at the moment, but it shouldn’t be too long before I’m back into my school routine of getting up at 6 and doing yoga or something for an hour before going about being generally proactive. If you find yourself feeling like you’re on a low ebb on a daily basis, try this (at least the alarm part) –  it really works wonders for me.

Also, I thought I was getting ill, so I took the ultimate precaution and stayed in bed pretty much all day on Saturday eating 12 of my 5-a-day. Sorted. My skin has a healthy glow besides the tired eyes & unexplainable spots (maybe if I ate more fruit…).

And Uni work? Well thankfully there’s not much yet – coursework begins later, but we do have lecture & seminar work, which has been a bit of an uphill struggle this time. In journalism, we’re learning how to deconstruct media to see how everything is designed to manipulate people into buying the product. I love it – practical psychology. But I’m really struggling to get the terminology right and analyse media properly, which is tiring because analysis is the sort of thing I really want to do well in and usually would… Wanting and trying but not succeeding is such a depressing experience. But I’m gonna get through it! Yeah!

 

Anyway, I noticed that I haven’t done a lot of writing recently (besides the blog) despite the fact that I want to write screenplays and books for a living. I think I’ll design a writing exercise for next week. Something like I have to write a short story next week and post it on the blog… I make no promise, but I will definitely have a proper writing project on the go.

 

 

Valentine’s day is rolling round tomorrow, so I’ll let my friends have their… fun, and I’m going to spend my day at the place I love – bonny Cardiff Bay! I’d bring my guitar but I’m sure it’s still to cold to sit & play, so my notebook & my thermos of tea will be my companions. Maybe I’ll have an early night too, just in case one of my flatmates & their love want to… have their fun. Whatever, I think it’s going to be a lovely day for me. Cafés, tea, lovely snacks, a notebook and some scenic beauty – what more could I ask for?

 

A house there I suppose. And lots of money. And a job with Doctor Who – Oo! Can I help with a new series of Doctor Who Confidential? Yeah, those are the unreasonable extras I’d ask for.



{January 31, 2012}   University, 2nd Semester

As is always the way, it’s all flown by, but at the same time it feels like I’ve been going to Uni for at least a year now. If it carries on at this rate, by the time I’ve completed my degree I’ll feel like nearly a decade’s past. Despite all this, I still walk into lectures and wonder if I’ve gone to the wrong room. You’d think after 3 months I’d feel some kind of vague familiarity with the mass of unnamed but regularly seen fellow students of journalism, but no. Instead I get the strange, solitary but strongly independent feeling I always get when first joining a group of total strangers. The only difference between now and the first semester is that there’s no first day nerves and no one’s awkwardly trying to befriend their seat-neighbours. Besides all that, it’s just like how I left it.

 

I’m worn out already, mostly from the cold, so I’ve spent a lot of time tucked up warm at home with earl grey, thinking about all the things I want to do. I’ve made lists. And deadlines. I’m working on a spare-time-timetable. Is that strange? It’s probably the effect of the New Year & my resolutions. Also a lot down to the fact that I’m a student living in a vibrant city that I love. Now if only there was a kind of high-paid job I could work towards that involved playing guitar, juggling, drawing and/or any of my other hobbies… I’d be over-loaded with motivation & productivity. I don’t want to be behind a counter.

 

I’m thinking about jobs a bit now because I’ve been looking for my accommodation for next year. I’ve been advised that 1-person flats are the most expensive, closely followed by 2-person flats. It’s only when you get to 3 or higher that you really start to see savings. That and small, not too expensive flats are few, if not non-existent between the Bay & city centre. Basically, I’ve been advised to share with 3 or more people & look for houses further north. But I’m still hoping. Maybe someone in the family will win the lottery or find buried treasure (if anyone, I’m betting it’s my brother – he has the Indiana Jones Factor), or maybe an amazing job will come along that’ll pay well & be creatively stimulating, or maybe I’ll find a perfect flatmate with loads of dosh who’d be willing to split the rent unevenly. And who’s lovely of course. If you’re reading this Mr/Miss Perfect Flatmate, I’d only share if you were interesting and/or lovely & our lives complemented each other enough – I wouldn’t use you for the money. Though we would need some.

 

It’s a bit of a waiting & staying informed game. *Sigh* Still, at least I’m not out “on the lash” every night, wasting money on cute clothes or lying in bed all day. Who knows, maybe if I save enough on my spending I’ll be able to afford a good place? It’ll all work out somehow. Eventually.

 

Off to watch Disney.

 

Sleep tight.



{January 24, 2012}   While My Guitar Happily Hums

It feels simultaneously like the days are flying by and slowly dragging on & on. The only way that I can convince myself that it was yesterday that I most recently went to the Bay is to look at the calendar good & hard & try to let the thoughts sort themselves out. Wow. I’ve done an awful lot these past few days, but at the same time, it feels like nothing. My latent perfectionism wants to convince me I’ve wasted my time, just because I’ve spent loads of time practicing guitar and yet only have 2 simple tunes memorised. It expects immediate excellence wherever there is effort. The rest of me knows I’ve done good.

 

While I’ve only memorised 2 out of the 20 or so that I’m interested in, my general proficiency has gone WAY up. I can actually pick up a piece and play it so it’s recognisable, and even adequate, without prior practice! It feels great. My friend’s given me an unwanted acoustic guitar, which is much lighter than my electric & I’m sure will sound a lot better than it (without the aid of amps) when I’ve re-stringed it. A bit more practice, some more tunes memorised and some good weather, and it won’t be long till I’m taking my music out with me. I’m feeling accomplished, and sounding pretty good.

 

Oh yeah, and a couple of interesting things happened on Sunday.

1) I discovered that the best day to visit Cardiff Bay (as a local anyway) is on Sundays, because that’s when everyone goes & the place feels most alive. Go any other day to clear your head, get some peace & focus on the beauty of the place, but go on Sunday for beauty with a bit of buzz. While passing by the front door of Torchwood, I overheard some confused non-fans, so stepped in to become the helpful informer & tell them about the TV show & why it’s decorated the way it is right now. Might strategically loiter around there next time & see if I can’t enlighten any more people.

2) That night I had a dream in which I sang an original song. I dreamt it was a song by Kate Bush which she sung & orchestrated in the style of Florence & the Machine. To make sure I remembered it I wrote down all of the song I could remember… while I was still dreaming. I tricked myself into forgetting the original song that I composed in my sleep by writing it down (& therefore stopping it praying on my mind) in an imaginary notebook! Agh, self-deception is wonderfully bizarre. I have the tune to the chorus at least & some lyrics that fit but I know aren’t the original ones. I should keep working at it though.

 

All good. Was going to watch something before bed but think I’m too worn out after a long day of errands (and aching back from guitar usage). Will read my bedtime book, ‘Gods Behaving Badly‘. Wish I had some proper bedtime tea – peppermint’s good for clearing the mind & Earl Grey’s good for focus… but will do in a pinch for bedtime. God I’m Tired. Must’ve worked hard today. Clap.

 

Goodnight o

 



There are few things more intimidating. But of all the things that intimidate me, very few force me to eventually undertake them. Which is why exams are wonderful, wonderful things that I hate. Gotta overcome all my fears at some point, and this one’s making me do just that!

 

University exams however (at least for the 1st semester) are a doddle compared to the last ones I took. I guess the trauma of IB exams made me forget what 1st year exams are like. Very relaxed now. Have 1 more exam tomorrow & then I’m free for a whole week. Oh all the things I have planned… as much as I’d like to say how I’m looking forward to catching up on my reading & visiting the Bay regularly & writing & so forth, let’s face it, right now all I want to catch up on is sleeping time.

 

And if you want to be productive, there is one thing you can do, which I recommend above all else: Set an alarm for a set time (say 7:00), leave it somewhere away from your bed & go to sleep. When the alarm wakes you, get up & turn it off immediately, don’t go back to bed, stay active and keep in your mind whatever you wanted to do today, and as soon as you’re awake enough & have had breakfast, go to it. I’m telling you, there is no better way to be productive than waking up with a purpose and not lying in. When I did that yesterday, I did 5 hours revision almost solidly – I even interrupted my break times because I was so impatient to get back to studying! If you need something doing, if you want to be able to pursue any motive wholeheartedly, do this. It will not fail you. Though, if you do all this and then find Youtube, it’s broken, alright? Relax by doing something else, nothing passive – instead of watching the TV, practice juggling or do some stretches or sketches or reading or something – just stay involved, but change the type of activity so you’re switching between work & play.



{October 17, 2011}   Back To The Blog!

According to the statistics section of my blog, two people found my blog by using this search: “6 year old kids drawing with teeth and interpretation”.

Huh.

I got curious and decided to try it out myself. I got as far as page 14 on a Google search and gave up. Whoever they were, they must have really cared out finding results to do with “6 year old kids drawing with teeth and interpretation”.

———

Well, my 3 day weekend of no blogging had a lot of success and just a little fail. I did next to nada on Friday and Saturday, just a little writing and my laundry – my first time so I made a big deal out of it. Sunday on the other hand was almost my ideal image of my life at Uni. I got up late for a human, early for a student, and after I had my breakfast I spent the whole day staying strictly to a timetable I wrote over Shredded Wheat & banana slices (in my ideal image there are no timetables). This meant that I spent between 8 and 9 hours of that day actually doing things (in my ideal image someone adores me for this).

 

I worked out that the best way to organise it was to spend 1 hour on mental activities like reading, writing, brainstorming, and 45 minutes on more physical activities, like juggling and guitar, and alternate between the 2 kinds. This way, each new activity is taking a break from the last one. The only problem was that with writing I usually felt like I didn’t want to stop, but then an hour’s a long time to be writing, so it’s probably for the best overall..

 

Now that I’m back on the blog, I’m wondering whether I should keep at doing this daily, or whether I should cut down on my posting. I’ve realised that, with all these hobbies and my increasing workloads, the time I’m given never seems enough. My guitar’s good, but I still can’t do that solo. My writing’s good, but I haven’t finished my fairy tale or those exercises, and I want to do more. I did loads yesterday, even exercise, but I didn’t do any art, or spanish, and I didn’t actually produce anything (nothing I’m willing to share anyway). I think I will cut down the blogging. That way I’ll be able to be more interesting when I post and I’ll get more done. This all may not look like much, but thinking of it during the day, what to write, actually writing it, editing bits, phrasing things properly… it’s an art I’m not yet used to. I think that like all my hobbies, it just needs constant practice. But if practicing this is getting in the way of improving my other hobbies, then I’ll just have to cut it back.

 

Basic summary: I now blog on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

—————-

 

It’s another lovely Cardiff night, but something’s not quite perfect… hold on, I have it…

 

I want a celebrity lullaby

Oh my god I love learning.



{September 3, 2011}   The Joy Of Pickle

The productivity today is the kind that puts other days to shame. Woke energised, happy to leave my comfy warm bed, went downstairs & sorted out everything! I’ve sorted things with Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs and filed about a wardrobe’s worth of papers, books & folders from school, haaa..

I’ve got the same hunger pangs as yesterday, but I guess this time it’s brain food. I had hoped to make it a day for magic trick learning, but after all that I’m plastered to my guitar & paying intense attention to the TV. HUgely looking forward to Doctor Who in an hour in which there are monsters under the bed for real. I Love Doctor Who, that’s one of the fundamental things you need to know about me – I will work for that show some day somehow. I will.

Mmm, Cornichons… that’s the 3rd thing I’m doing now, eating mini-pickles straight from the jar, very vinegary, could hardly be happier right now – wait, Bowie music on the tele! Ah, happiness! Shit, out of gherkins, must hunt/gather.

Well, perhaps if I get more sorting out of the way today while I’m still in the mood then I can have all of tomorrow to focus on either hobbying or blogging about preparing for Uni… I may do both.



{August 31, 2011}   21 Days

The date is August 31st. On the 21st of September I’ll be arriving at Senghennydd Court to settle into my new life at Cardiff University and prepare for the anxious joy that is Freshers Fortnight. Aaaagh.

I’m feeling pretty well prepared, even though I’ve no idea what I should be packing, buying now or buying when I get there. Mostly though I’m miffed at myself for not having done much these past 3 months in terms of the lists I made dreaming of freedom back in school. Well, here’s what I’ve done;

  1. Organised a remark on my exam paper
  2. Organised Uni accommodation
  3. Organised student loans (at least I think I have…)
  4. Bought tickets to Freshers Fortnight
  5. Watched ~60 films (I’m aiming for 100 this year)
  6. Organised a 2 week reunion for some friends I made at Summer Acting School last year in Cardiff
  7. Visited the friend who couldn’t make the reunion due to being exhausted from her cancer (visit her site, she’s an amazing & inspiring person, even ignoring her fight with cancer. http://theknockoneffect.wordpress.com/author/theknockoneffect/)
  8. Looked into a new musical instrument, the lute-harp
  9. Started playing guitar again
  10. Done far too much research into Cardiff, life in Cardiff, life in Cardiff for students & Freshers that I can’t even remember what I learnt
  11. Half tidied my room

Actually, looking at it now without the list of everything I was aiming to get done,  I think I’ve done pretty good. Lesson learnt – look at what you’ve done, not what you aimed to.

…Jeez, what is wrong with me? Not meaning to be arrogant but that list is damn good. I’ve been surrounded by prissy, over-priviliged wieners for way too long. School is dead, Long Live University!



et cetera