September 14th, 2006


Fucking Mosquitos Are Killing Me

First, go watch this video. It's amazingly awesome (I wanted to get that out of the way because this post is long and I don't know who'll be able to get through it all)

Because I have nothing else to do with my time besides read and write, I've been getting myself caught up on some of my more Administrative Duties. Taking time out to re-name all the pictures Jessica gave me when I left (I still haven't said how much I appreciate that disc, I've been referring back to those pictures on a near-daily basis; thank you SO much), finalizing my I-pod to my specific liking (which requires me to give genres to every song, make playlists, etc.), and cataloguing all of my writing.

Tonight, I finished transferring all of my entries in LJ-1 from the Live Journal website to a word document on my computer. Get this: 559 entries over 2 years, 3 months, 2 days, 3 hours, and 14 minutes, comprising 908 pages of writing. So, to anyone who actually managed to read all of that over time, figure that you read the equivalent of a REALLY shitty version of "War & Peace." Besides myself, I only know for sure that one other person managed that feat. Good Christ I'm a windbag.

Moving on, at the moment I'm a mere 16,080 words from my 50,000 word goal on this novel. That's around 175 pages, but I'm thinking this'll be somewhere closer to 200. A sizable downgrade in sheer length compared to the first draft of my first novel, which tipped the scales at 463 pages, before losing a major chunk and ending at 324. But, then again, that took me three months while this is being done in under a month. I don't know why I'm talking about this, except I've been writing for a couple hours now and my mind's a bit fried. Plus, I lost Internet there for a spell and I'm kinda worried it'll crap out again.

You know what I haven't talked about yet - indeed, what I've been putting off - is what my roommates are like. I haven't really painted much of a picture besides: Three Girls.

Well, let's start with Jenny. She's the one, if you'll recall, who I had a senior, 400-level short-story class with. We were in a small group together, I wrote a fucking good story that seemingly only struck a chord with her (among people in the class - the rest not necessarily taking to my Shock Tactics, or at least not willing to speak up against the Vocal Minority). We flirted with the idea of keeping in touch beyond that class, even broaching the idea of starting a homemade writing group that summer. After a few e-mails, we lost touch. This was in late 2002 or early 2003. Fast-forward to last October: Jenny, working for the school at the Water Activities Center, remembered that very same fucking good story and had been trying to contact me through the school's registry. She didn't know my last name, however, so her attempts at finding the correct Steven left her grasping at straws. However, at the WAC, while talking about the story, Megan (from the dorms) said that it sounded like something I'd write. By dumb fucking luck, Jenny and I were reunited, and the writing group, and all the rest.

With the backstory out of the way, I'll try to delve into personality as best I can. Quiet, enjoys her alone time, has read more books than anyone I've ever met, will be exceedingly blunt with those she's comfortable around - especially in critiquing writing. Quite unflappable in the sense that she's not really going to fly off the handle, as far as I can tell. Off-beat sense of humor (God, what the hell does that mean?); put it this way: she finds some of my more ... colorful writing very amusing. Not just me, anyone's really. Like this short story she read about this guy who's keying a penis into some dude's car; the guy is approached by a crippled old man who tells him he shouldn't be doing that; as they're conversing over this subject, the owner of the car comes along and kicks both of their asses, the guy and the cripple. Things like that. What did the blind, crippled, deaf, mute get for Christmas? That kinda humor.

Then, there's Emily. Emily and Jenny have been living together for a while now; they're practically married. Like, picture Mark and Mario with vaginas; OK, maybe that vision was uncalled for. Anyway, I think Emily just might be the most soft-spoken person I've ever met. I'm not saying that's a bad thing, actually I'm saying that quite literally. When she projects, it sounds odd - intimidating only because you wouldn't think, after hearing her speak normally, that she has it in her. Actually, I had a friend like that in middle and high school - Jeff Noel. He hardly EVER talked and when he did, it was the softest speech you'd ever hear out of a male OR female; but when he got mad and talked in his Grown Up voice, MAN it was disorienting! Emily's very articulate too. I mean, everyone here, we're dealing with FAR more vast speaking-vocabularies than yours truly. But, listening to Emily speak, you almost get the sense that you're inadvertently learning something just by having those sound waves enter your ear cavities. She SAYS she's gotten angry with people in the past and dealt with them accordingly in argument, but I could hardly believe it. Emily's too nice! Plain and simple.

Finally, there's Liz. She and Jenny worked at this famous bookstore in Lower Manhattan called The Strand for a spell. She plays guitar and sings, though stagefright has thus far kept her from performing in open crowds. Still, she's got the chops to at least hang; powerful vocals with an interesting sound that could very well catch on if she's given a break. Liz is very straightforward, the more talkative of the three. When she gets excited or thinks something's funny, her voice raises about 90 octaves in pitch. She's very principled, especially when it comes to artistic integrity.

With everyone here, you're dealing with artists. Liz has music and poetry. Emily writes some, but her main focus is painting and drawing. Jenny's the more straightforward writer of the bunch, but she dabbles in poetry as well. What we're cultivating here (and hopefully will be better articulated with the My Space group Emily's in the process of creating) is a communal sort of arrangement where creativity is pushed to the forefront of our daily lives and interaction with people. We share expenses, down to the groceries (though, I'm assuming my money's not going towards their Feminine Hygiene Products ... I may have to look into that). Obviously, we share more than just living space, as mine and Jenny's rooms are in high-traffic areas (I still feel bad, sitting here after 5am, needing to use the restroom nearly every hour after guzzling pitcher after pitcher of iced tea every day). We all cook (though, I've yet to actually prepare a meal for the group; the best I've done so far is to make Nate's Pasta Salad, sans carrots), we all do the dishes (yes, I've been doing my fair share thank you very much). More importantly, we all get along. Our personalities mesh really well - which doesn't surprise me, considering I feel that I'm a pretty easy guy to live with, don't ask for much, don't complain much, keep to myself a lot.

Emily's terrified that I'm going to get fed up with being in the room that doubles as a walk-thru for everyone in the apartment; she keeps asking when I'm going to buy curtains to put around my bed - even offering to look them up online for me. This is coming from the fact that - when she lived with Jenny in Seattle - she had to sleep in the Living Room, with curtains blocking her bed off from the kitchen and everything else. But, I really don't think it's going to be a problem for me. It's not like I have people in and out of here all day long - they walk through when the go places and return, or if Emily or Liz need to get to the kitchen or bathroom. It's occasional at most. Besides, what the hell do I need privacy for?

My eyes are starting to lose their focus. I don't feel tired, but I bet if I tried I'd sleep like a fucking log.
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