Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Just because you're older doesn't mean you're smarter

It's been a long, painful road to this realization, but I'm finally starting to come to grips with it.

For example: I woke up this morning to a loud crash. In my disoriented state, at first all I was capable of was bleary indignation at whoever had disrupted me. It took about 10 or 15 minutes for me to get to the point where I was capable of becoming suspicious as to the source of the noise, and so I got out of bed to investigate.

My entire desk was overturned.

The fact that the only way this could have happened was me kicking it did little to improve my disposition at this point. But yet there I was at 7am, picking up everything off the floor and putting my desk back together. I'm very grateful that all of my tech still works as far as I can tell, especially my printer which fell off of the top shelf, hitting my chair on the way down.

However, once is never enough. It couldn't possibly be considered a full day without at least one more mishap.

Which came later when I was walking back to Trustees, my dorm building. I jumped up the stairs as usual, swiped my card, opened the door, and knocked my glasses off of my face.

I'd hit myself in the FACE with a DOOR. I might be wrong, but I'm pretty sure that even 5 year olds could open that door without almost knocking themselves out. What compounded the problem was that there were other people nearby to judge me for the horrendous nature of my ineptitude.

Let's face it, stuff like that is EMBARRASSING.

The list goes on, but I'll abbreviate the rest of todays: I discovered that my motor skills are sub par when it comes to doing anything other than the basics like walking. I realized that I'd forgotten to actually purchase the books I needed from the campus bookstore almost two hours after it closed.

Alright, that one does need a little bit of explaining. Basically what had happened was I went into the bookstore looking for some of the textbooks I'd need for class. I found what I needed for three of my four classes, and decided to go look up the ones I'd need for the last class at the Student center next door. I piled the books on one of the shelves, telling myself that it'd be fine since I was coming straight back.

In reality I remembered right after a two hour swim practice that I'd completely forgotten to GO BACK AND BUY THEM. Now I have to wait until tomorrow, and I feel like a complete idiot.

Hopefully someone else will be working there, otherwise I'll have to have one of those "Wait... weren't you here yesterday?" conversations. Those are never fun if it involves you having lapses in memory.

At any rate, college has been mostly off to a good start. I haven't failed any of my classes, haven't been seriously injured, have been fairly adequate at social interaction, and the crown jewel of my collection: I haven't DIED.

On a very positive note, as a slight deviation, swim team has started! I'm quite excited to see how this season goes. Cali keeps insisting that the fact that I'm decent without having ever swam club means that by the time Gary and Dorothy are done with me, I'll be nothing short of in-freaking-credible.
While I'm still skeptical about that level of improvement being possible, I did manage to pull off a 24.9 50 free after the first day of practice. I had to start from in the water, too, since Gary didn't want me to use the blocks.

Needless to say I'm quite pumped about that time. My best 50 free ever is a 22.65, and that was at my peak with a special racing suit. Gary (who's the guy swim coach, sorry, I should have mentioned that earlier) told me that he was impressed, and that he felt like I was going to be a solid, helpful addition to the team this year.

"You're going to help us." Given all of the things mentioned above, that sentence is a pretty good confidence boost, don't you think?

Monday, August 30, 2010

Democrats: An insider's perspective

I will start by saying that this post has been a long, long time coming. Having grown up in their stronghold and somehow making it out with both my morals and body intact, I feel compelled to share about them with the rest of the world.

This also might be a small token gesture of revenge to all of the people who bashed my ideology/ faith during high school. But it might not be. :)

At any rate, I present to you:


First of all, all democrats do not talk like Obama. While they are frequently well versed in what they think should be done with our nation, they are fully capable of communicating in ways other than motivational speeches and pausing for effect every six or seven words.

They also do not march places. Unless they're in a marching band, and then they only march sometimes.

It is also a well established reality that the Democrats of New York have maintained a fully operational ninja strike force team since the founding of their state in 1376.
The NYNs (New York Ninjas) have been responsible for many things over these past few centuries. A few of the more significant ones were Abraham Lincoln's hat, Swiss cheese, math, and of course Neil Patrick Harris.

In Massachusetts, you can never be too careful of them. They have eyes and ears everywhere.

All donkeys in MA are really cyborg drones. Even the PEZ dispensers.

Since they're everywhere, it's vitally important to be prepared to do battle. Often just sensing a non-democrat nearby is enough to send some of them into a frenzy of righteous indignation.

Sort of like that, only they do it for political reasons as opposed to just for kicks.

When fighting Democrats, there are a couple of weapons that you should equip yourself with. I try to bring at least three of them with me everywhere I go, just to be on the safe side.

1. Logic
While I have admitted most Democrats are well versed in what they believe, that doesn't necessarily mean that they know WHY they believe it. Countering their arguments with common sense and reason will frequently cause them to resort to the "Well, you're wrong because you disagree with me", which is the argumentative equivalent of a sword through your own brain. It's also hilarious to watch them squirm.

2. Any picture of George W. Bush
Like a red hot knife through butter. Their irrational fear/dislike for anything Bush did will send them packing almost instantly.
In the interest of being fair, however, I tried the same thing on a Republican using a picture of Obama. The effect was the same.

3. Not sharing your money
Nothing demoralizes them faster than holding onto your own hard earned cash.

4. Handguns
This one has little to do with whether or not the person you're engaged in combat with is a democrat and more to do with the fact that guns are pretty effective on anyone.

5. Sunlight
You know the zombie apocalypse everyone is always talking about? Enough said. Flashlights don't work as well, but will suffice when you're in a pinch.

And now for the disclaimer. None of the stuff in this post should be taken seriously and/or personally. That is all. I wrote this for funsies.

It also appears I lied about having a list of music this time around. I apologize for that. In an attempt to make it up to you, I'm letting the Andy (go look at the post on coffee- that Andy) do a guest post of his very own. I don't know what it's about, so it will be a surprise for everyone!

We'll see how it turns out. Until next time, then.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Movie Night

So originally the plan for tonight was for Cali and myself to go study somewhere, do homework, whatever. Probably just hang out in the library for a couple of hours and be productive for once.

What happened was I was supposed to meet her outside her dorm building at 7:30, which I was there for. Since I was under the impression that you couldn't go inside the building without a proper card key, I sat on a bench outside and waited.

And waited.

I was still waiting when one of the other girls who lives in that dorm walked by and asked me what I was doing, since I "looked like such a creeper just sitting there." I'm not kidding, she actually said that. I told her, and she said that that made more sense as she pulled the door open and walked inside without using a card key.

I had been sitting outside for 15 minutes waiting for someone to open an unlocked door for me. Not to mention that now people think I'm suspicious.

Once I'd finally gotten inside, it became apparent rather quickly that we would not be going to the library- we would be watching a movie instead. Since I wasn't much of a movie person, it was going to be the girls choice because they actually owned movies.

Oh, right- Katie Duncan had joined us by this point. This is Cali, the first girl:
and this is Katie:
Both are really cool girls. That being said, the movie they decided on was... something else entirely.

I realize now that it was a trap I'd set myself up for when I said that I didn't have an opinion one way or the other on chick flicks. That having been said, they decided on a movie called Bride Wars. They both assured me that it was a good film, and that it was pretty decent even in the realm of chick flicks. So, we settled down, and after struggling with the TV's settings a little we sat back to enjoy the show.

I must admit, I hadn't thought it was possible at first, but this movie showed me otherwise. The director of that film single handedly crafted an hour and a half long film comprised of nothing but bridal drama. I had to sit there in disbelief while two girls fought to sabotage each others weddings because they both wanted to have their weddings on the same day at the same place.

I'm trying to say this in the nicest way possible, seeing as whoever it was must have had to put some kind of effort into that movie and I don't want to belittle all of that work- but having seen Bride Wars, I'm now HORRIFIED at the movie industry.

It wasn't even a story!! They could have literally just had the two main characters slap-fight and insult each other for 90 minutes and the end would have been almost exactly the same.

Is it even possible to like drama so much that you glorify it in film? Movie people, I came to college for many reasons, but one of them was to GET AWAY FROM ALL OF THAT. I *hate* drama. It's petty and useless.

Fortunately watching that film with a couple of girls- actually I forgot, Hillary was there too, she came at around the halfway point- but watching it with a couple of girls offered an excellent opportunity to provide a running commentary about what I thought of the film. :)

I don't think they appreciated it as much as I did. I had to duck a lot during that movie.

Speaking of appreciating things, I'm on another music hunt- but I'm also very unhappy with my ipod, since I can't get it to connect to the iTunes store anywhere on campus. Rrgh. That aside though, I think my next post will have some songs I'm thinking about for input. Music is awesome!

Until next time, then!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Coffee, and why it's still evil

One of my most profound principles is that coffee, of any strength or flavor, is the worlds purest expression of evil.

As an explaination, rewind the clock to about the middle of the first semester of my senior year. I had pulled an all-nighter (again) and was suffering pretty badly because of said lapse in judgement. I walked into the cafeteria and sat down next to this guy:

A couple of things you need to know about Andy, before I continue. For starters, he is a very very cool guy, not to mention the biggest reason I have this affinity for rather girly music.

He is also very sneaky.

On this particular morning, Andy had his usual fare: a large Starbucks coffee of some bizarre flavor or another. I, in my grogginess, slumped into a chair next to him and complained a bit about how dreadfully tired I was.

Now, Andy had been trying for a while to get me hooked on coffee. He would often take me to the Starbucks near the high school and try to convince me to get something other than hot chocolate. Normally, I'd refuse politely and just get something else or wait until he was ready to leave.

In this story, however, we weren't at Starbucks. We were in school, and my mind was incapable of contemplating anything other than "mmeeeerrrrrrrrrrrr".

To be fair, he might have been trying to take pity on me when he offered me some of his coffee. Normally he is very protective of "his" coffee- often to the point of violence, if he thinks it's reasonable.

I think- I THINK- I thanked him for the offer before I took him up on it. I was too tired to resist, and besides, isn't coffee supposed to help keep you awake?
Yes. Yes, it is.

The first fifteen seconds were the best, based on the fragments of the memory left. I took a gulp, choked, made some comment on the flavor, and then...

I'm pretty sure some of the colors I was seeing don't actually exist.

Here's the best analogy I could come up with: imagine of you took a rhino, plugged it into several car batteries, and then locked it a box filled with snakes. Then threw the box out of an airplane at 35,000 feet.

Now tell the rhino to bake you a loaf of bread before it hits the ground. "Fidgety" isn't really the word I'd use to describe what was going on, it was more along the lines of "uncontrolled panic."

I spent the rest of the day feeling like my body was going to get up and run away from me, regardless of what my now-supercharged brain was telling it. Fortunately, that didn't happen, but that didn't stop me from having some sort of consequence- I couldn't sleep the next night.

So for all of you people out there who think that coffee is good for you, just remember: I'd be willing to bet that far fewer people out there are addicted to hot chocolate than that dreadful brew. Just saying.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Down and out, but only kind of

Let me apologize in advance. I'm not feeling particularly well today.

Most everyone tries to put on a happy facade for the public, because for one reason or another they feel like they need to conceal what is going on inside themselves. Such a facade is hardly, if ever, penetrated by other people unless they are extremely trustworthy.

Since you, my dear reader, have shown an interest in my person by continuing to read this post in spite of the fact that (as you've probably guessed) there will not be any attempts at funny college stories, I will let down my guard to you.

Let me start off by saying that, among other things, people you want to be special in your life should be treated with the utmost and unceasing care. Going about things the wrong way or at the wrong times can often lead to disaster.

Not everyone is willing to forgive everything.

While taking that thought into account, think to yourself about how you want to spend the following years of your life in terms of those people: I would suggest thinking about long term benefits, as opposed to rushing headlong into things.

I offer this advice because I have recently failed to do so, and such as it is I will miss out on what could have been a solid friendship. Possibly more. But such as things are that possibility is lost.

Another troublesome thought that has been growing on me is that I think I'm the only one here who hasn't been in contact with their family. Most of the time that I've been hanging out with my friends here, one of them has had to take a couple of steps aside and answer a phone call from their mom or dad or the like.

I haven't received any such calls.

It was almost comical, last year when we would tease my dad about wanting to get in touch with Andrew all the time. A day didn't go by without him constantly checking skype to see if Andrew was online, or texting Andrew to set up a video-chat session, etc etc.

Needless to say more then a few days has gone by and my family is nowhere to be heard. That being said, it may be partially my fault... I spent most of my time during the end of my summer off with my Needham friends, and other circumstances in my life have caused me to strongly appreciate my individuality. I wouldn't be surprised if this awful silence is what my dad meant when he told me before he left that "We'll try to not hover over you."

Well... there's hovering, but then there's also checking in. Hovering is obnoxious, but the latter often helps one such as myself with their frequently suffering self-confidence. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I like to feel loved, and silence makes for a poor messenger.

...That's about it. I hope this doesn't turn any of you off from reading my future posts, but I just feel like pretending my entire life is happy go lucky when it isn't would be unfair to you. Unrealistic expectations never lead anywhere good.

I love you, Mom, Dad, Andrew, Stephen, Matt. I miss you, way down here in Kentucky. I think of you five daily.

...good night.

Monday, August 23, 2010

College: Round 1

For all of my anxious viewers, I give you college story number one.

For starters, those of you who facebook stalk me as well should look through my friends list for a girl named Cali Thomas. She's been an online buddy of mine until I met her recently here at Asbury, and needless to say she's just as cool a cat as I anticipated.

Two things about her: one, this story involves her a little, and two we're not related. In spite of popular belief.

Anyway. It was the second (maybe third...?) day of college orientation, and I ended up going to Wal Mart with her and her family- it was both spontaneous and odd, since her family took me along very willingly after having only known me for about 20 minutes. Regardless, upon arrival, I decided to go and investigate the shampoo section.

Apparently people like you better if you shower regularly. A difficult concept to grasp after having just hiked in the woods for a week, but I fought through my doubt and made my way over.

This is what I found:

While the pictures alone should be enough to convey what the Axe people are trying to say, the words above it read "The Axe effect may result in, but is not limited to, unrelenting female attention and/or late nights."

I wasn't about to fall for such obvious slander, though. Being a man of integrity and hard work, I was determined to earn my lady friends the good old fashion way: charm, wit, and of course my smashing good looks.

I'll be sure to let you all know how it goes.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Operation Make Matt Moral: A Journey Into The Unknown

Tomorrow morning I leave for college.

I'm really not ready for this at all. The music I'm listening to helps a little bit, but I'm still getting crushed in the whirlpool of my self doubt and insecurity.

I really can't promise how soon I'll be able to talk to you guys again, I'm going to be really preoccupied with setting the foundations for my new life in the good ole south. I'm also sorry that this post doesn't have a picture, my printer/scanner is packed away at the moment...

Good lord, I'm going to KENTUCKY. What is going on??

I love all of you out there, even those who sort of secretly follow my blog. I'll talk to you all soon!

...with pictures! Yes, there will be pictures. I have some backed up, just so I don't have any excuses. Hold me to this, ok guys?

Thursday, August 5, 2010

wait for it...

I apologize for being so lazy about posting art. To make it up to my audience, hopefully you will accept this:

I'm currently working on a small series of pencil drawings, totaling about 5 pictures. Some of them are easy enough, but a couple of them are mind bogglingly difficult, and as such it's a time consuming venture.

HOWEVER, if you will all be willing to bear with me for a couple of days more at the most, I will post the first one which is very very close to completion.

Sounds good?

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Wait... Take 2?

Let me tell you a story.

This year, I swam for Needham High's boys swim team as co-captain (Mike Ricci was the other captain). I really enjoyed spending time with that group of boys, almost as much as I enjoyed the swimming itself. Swimming is my sport. I love it, breathe it, and drown myself in it. (I apologize for the horrendous pun...)
Anyway. At the end of the season, a few of the more powerful swimmers (a group which included myself) were carted off to Harvard to compete against the best swimmers in our state. Aka, our states meet.

States is always an exciting time, if you're into swimming. It is the day when you are supposed to get all of your adrenaline up and running, get your game on and break some records. I have always gotten at least three personal bests at these meets. This year was extra special though, since it was my last chance to burn home records. I was 110% fired up for this meet and to make a long and loud story short I cut some significant portions off of my old records- for example, I lost 2 seconds off my 100 fly time, bringing it down to the 56 it is at now.

It was a great day, but all great things must come to an end. I left that day satisfied with my accomplishment, but also saddened that I was leaving the arena forever.

Please note that I am tragically short-sighted.

It recently clicked in my brain that wait a minute- I'm going to be swimming in college, aren't I? So... wait... that means...?

Yes, Brian. You get another 4 years of competitive school swimming.

It shouldn't take much imagination to picture my elation upon the thought finally making its presence known.

Oh, and I got some new dart guns. Because we all know getting to shoot at stuff "safely" is fun.

I promise to put a good picture in my next post! Pinky promise.