Friday, July 27, 2012

A simple matter . . .

I think I'm beginning to understand something.
There are always exceptions to rules. However, around rural areas, like the area I live in, people are generally Conservative and they fear God. I wondered why large cities have a lower ratio of Conservatives and/or steadfast Christians.
I've heard a theory about a lack of education. I disagree. I'm not boasting, just pointing out a fact, my IQ is about a third higher than average. There are smart people and not as smart people in both areas. It's not education. It's something more than that.
And I think I know what it is.
It's kind of simple, actually.
It's a matter of replacing things.

Look up at the countless stars every night, seven of which are planets, many are stars with their own planets, and so many more are galaxies with their own stars that have their own planets, and you can see evidence of God. Look up at an orange-lit, smoggy, light-polluted sky every night, and you can see evidence of man.
If you step out your front door in the morning and are greeted with nature, a blue sky, birds, flowers of every color, green grass, a fresh breeze, maybe even a rabbit or a squirrel, you see evidence of God.
If you step out of your front door and are greeted by a hallway leading to the exit of your apartment, or else a pallid expanse of concrete and cars, you see evidence of man.
If you plant a seed in a garden (not a flower box on your roof), watch it grow, harvest the fruit or leaves, and watch as the plant reacts to these things, you see evidence of God.
If you go to the store and shove your way past a few people to grab a couple pale, unripe tomatoes, you see evidence of man.
There's a pattern here. People in rural areas are more inclined to be greeted by God's creation wherever they go. They walk along dirt roads, or in small forests, along riverbanks, etc. They are surrounded by life. They are surrounded by an impossibly balanced ecosystem. They are surrounded by God.
People who live in or around cities, they live in man's dwelling. They're surrounded by what man has done to God's creation. Instead of looking around and seeing what God has made, they see what man has made of it.
This is my belief as to why more God-fearing people live in the 'country'.

Now as far as Conservatism, be it socially, morally or politically, I think they all stem from a common mindset: More with less.
For instance, around here, a Conservative likely has a garden, or has had one. They do so not necessarily out of necessity, but to save money and to be able to have a say about what's going into their food.
A Liberal around here does so because it's "fun", or to have a say about what's going into their food.
The difference here is a replaced reasoning.
A Conservative will usually have a garden for the reason of, well, conservation. Growing food because they need to, or because it will benefit them and their family in the long run. They do so because it's conserving and it's cheaper and it's natural. And also because you can see God's work and plan for food production.
A Liberal will usually have a garden as a hobby or simply because they can. Their gardens usually end up costing far more than it would've just to drive to the grocery store, because they're not trying to conserve, but instead, they're just wasting time and money on something fun. That's why a garden on the roof of your apartment doesn't count. It's not out of necessity. If it was, you wouldn't be living in an apartment like that, you'd be living in cheap housing (read: conserving).
A Conservative is, around here at least, typically one who makes due with what they have, cutting costs wherever possible, growing their own vegetables, raising their own animals to butcher.
A Liberal is typically the kind that sees chickens as animals that should be free (they should be--or at least happy), but to the point that they cry foul (or "fowl", if you will) when they see a chicken in a 4'x4'x4' coop.

I'm not saying there's anything wrong with living in a suburban area, or being a Liberal or anything like that.
I just happen to identify with the Conservative lifestyle, seeing God's creation and not man's distortion of it, and it just 'clicked' today as to what causes the city people to typically be Liberal and the country people to tend to be Conservative.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Love . . .

Love . . . What is love (I'm not going to follow that up with "Baby, don't hurt me")? Some say a chemical reaction in the brain, others a feeling, etc.
However, I have another opinion. I believe love is everything, but is isn't everything . . . 
So, we know that it is, in fact, a chemical reaction in the brain; when certain synapses and hormones are produced, we feel 'love'.
Also, it is merely a feeling; those synapses and hormones and chemical reactions combine to cause an adrenaline rush upon the sight of the object of our affection. In other words, everything about us is 'heightened'. Our emotions, heart rate, sensitivity (physically and emotionally), mental state, respiration, strength, speed, everything is heightened to its peak because of that adrenaline rush.
Also, 1 Corinthians says it's patient; it waits without tapping fingers, without pacing, without sigh or groaning. It simply waits.
It's kind; it is being nice, generous and encouraging. Graceful. I could go on about grace, but I won't. Not this time. But it is kind in that it doesn't cause any harm, only good.
It does not envy; it doesn't want anything, or wish for wrong upon another. It brings peace and dissuades us from conflict. It doesn't make people think they need something they don't have.
It does not boast; it builds others up, doesn't say "look at me", doesn't step in front of people just to make its presence known. It lets them realize it through other means, such as the way it is kind.
It is not arrogant; it doesn't poke fun at others for not having it, doesn't try to make people envious--no, it encourages them to find love for themselves. It doesn't put others down.
It is not rude; it does not belittle anyone, it does not disinclude (that's a real word starting now) someone. It doesn't try to cause anger, and does not make others feel bad.
It doesn't insist on its own way; it encourages people to bring their own ideas to light, to embrace other ideas, disinclines one from being judgmental. It has open arms and an open mind, always saying "Let me know, let me in. You have a beautiful mind; express it. I want to know your thoughts."
It is not irritable; it doesn't get angry. It is at peace. It hears rude comments and ignores them. It leaves one happy and joyful. It is a sense of calm, always finding the positive things.
It is not resentful; it doesn't hold a grudge. If someone does wrong, it lets it go, forgives and forgets. It will not say "Remember when you did that one thing?" in an argument, but rather says "Remember when I did that one thing?". It embraces the idea of forgiveness. It doesn't demand people get even, but that they forgive. It bears the judgments and wraths of others, but does not retaliate.
It does not rejoice at wrongdoing; it doesn't cheer on those who are bitter or angry. It wards off sin. It doesn't tell someone that wrong is right. It does not contort or twist what is false into a half-truth. It is black-and-white, knows the defining line between wrong and right, and abhors the former.
It rejoices with the truth; it brazenly declares what is true and does not keep secrets. It is always honest, boldly so. It is made stronger with honesty and is fortified with the truth.
It bears all things; it is mocked and laughed at and scorned, yet stands strong. It meets these things head on and repays them with joy and still waits. It strengthens. It emboldens.
It believes all things; it trusts. It trusts because it itself is honest and true. It is a confidant when all others have turned away. It is faithful. It is precious. It is a child-like faith and adoration.
It hopes all things; it is naive. It is wondrously simple in the way it simply 'hopes'. It is positive and optimistic. It disinclines pessimism and a lack of faith. It wants and expects, but does not anger when all its dreams don't come true. It is courageous yet feeble in its hopes.
It endures all things; it sees unfaithfulness, anger, wrath, shame, and bears them. It hopes that things will always be positive in the end, therefore it holds on. It never lets go. Ever. It waits. And keeps waiting. It gets picked on, it gets overlooked, it gets forgotten and abandon, yet it holds fast. It never lets go. It never lets go. It will always be there. It will always persist. Nothing can satisfy it nor extinguish it. It gets strengthened by everything, but is not diminished by anything. It never lets go. Do you understand? It holds on for hours, days, weeks, months, years . . . And it never. Lets. Go. It stands through every storm, every trial, every ache, pain and hurt, and it comes out stronger. It endures. Forever. It waits. It always waits.
And no matter what we do, if we don't have love, it's all for nothing.
Love is everything. Love is life. Love is beauty. Love is strength, honor, hope, faith . . .  If we don't have all those things listed, if we don't refuse to do the things it refuses to do, all our life is forfeit. Nothing becomes of us. We live and we die and that's it. Ashes to ashes.
But if we love, we endure. We make a difference in the world, an anti-cancer. We brighten one person's day, they brighten another's. And through six degrees of separation, we can cure the planet of negativity . . . If we simply love. Like a spreading flame that keeps burning and consuming until every soul has been set ablaze with love.
The absence of everything is nothing. If we have no love, we have nothing--an absence of everything.
Love is everything.
In 1 John chapter 4, we find out something . . .  God is love. God is love, and love is everything. God is everything. Without God, nothing we do means anything at all. Without God, we become absence; we become nothing.
Show your love to the world. Be a disciple of Christ by being a disciple of Love. Let the world know that God is Love.

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Been collecting junk to put together for my "Steampunk" outfit. I've got the gloves, the belt, a pocketwatch, various chains and straps, a gauntlet/wrist guard, boots, and an eyepiece (I wasn't expecting to get one of those, but it was on display for like $9, so I couldn't resist).
Working on getting better at sewing. I wanna try the sewing machine, but I'm not sure how to load the string, so I'm getting better at sewing by hand. I've got an old, worn, torn and half-faded pair of dark blue jeans that I'm going to cut up and use to accent stuff.
There's some stuff on ebay for not too much money that I want to get; vests, a suit jacket and some shirts that'd fit the 'future-Victorian' look I'm going for.

That's about all that's been going on lately . . . Mostly.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Ah, haha . . . I just realized that the main character in the last story I wrote (finished in June) doesn't even have a name! It's a dozen pages long, and not once did I mention him by name. His wife, yes, but only by a first name. No surname. It's written from a first-person perspective (a set of journal entries), but there's no introduction.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Working on new stuff . . .

Been working on some lyrics for the first time in ages . . . It's nice. It's a familiar niche for me. I miss it.
But not only that, a musical accompaniment to the lyrics has kind of slapped me in the face (yayy!). The chords are Esus2-Em, Am7-Am, D-Dsus4, Esus2-Em, Am7-Am, D-Dsus4-D-Dsus2. Simple enough, yeah? Might look idiotic, but it's pretty simple if you're into suspended chords. Seeing as how they add a sense of longing, and this song is called "Wanderlust" . . . Descending suspended chords it is.

Here is a link to what I've got of the song so far. If you have a Tumblr, let me know what you think. If not, please comment.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

An introduction . . .

This is the story I just started working on; I'm going to have Michael's appearance similar to my own, though his personality will be far from mine. He's going to be a very cocky guy, gloating and proud. Confident in himself, boastful, and taunting. Usually, it seems that I can write a character just like me, or one WAY different . . . I'm going to try to capture a medium here, but it's unlikely that will happen to any extent.

A soft breeze entered the auditorium, rustled his hair and sent a shiver down his spine. The moment was finally here. There was nowhere else to go. Michael Tertian had evaded his pursuer to the best of his abilities, as he always did; it was his policy. It was the promise he'd made to her. In secret, though, he hoped it would come to this. He always hoped it would come to this. A shedding of blood, the beauty of the final breath being released into the air, the fleeing of a soul from its carnal binding. He treasured the act. There was an aesthetic appeal to it. It was something to be observed, to be respected, to be . . . enjoyed. The fear and the courage, the peace and the war of it all, he found it was truly a moment in which he was alive, seeing the life drained from the hunter, ironically, by the hunted. Why he was being hunted was no longer a question; all the dark-alley-types knew who he was. He had managed a reputation in the underworld of New Hildeport. The criminals, the mercenaries, the assassins, the bounty hunters and the Corrupted Rebirths all knew of him—most that could afford it even had a price on his head.
The rhythmic thudding and jingle of stalking boots followed the slamming of the door. As he stood on the stage, back turned to the entrance, he spread his arms as if inviting the duel. A wry smile crossed his face, his lips twisting upwards around the edges.
“'All the world's a stage', but I disagree . . .” he spun, his arms still outstretched, “I say the stage is all the world.”
A slender, almost feminine figure was approaching slowly, unimpressed. The way they carried themselves told him it was a male, despite its shape; tall, shoulders held high, straightened back, neck perfectly vertical, complete absence of sway in the hips, consistent and wide distance between the feet with each step, stepping flatly opposed to heel-first. A flat gray gas mask covered their face; the two vacant eyepieces seemed to absorb the light around them, giving the appearance of two holes in an otherwise smooth faceplate.
The pursuer's strides gradually grew quicker and longer until he was in a full-on sprint. He escalated the two-meter flight of steps to the stage in one swift motion and stopped just short of Tertian's reach. With a sudden jolt of his arms, two downward-angled sheaths extended and unfolded into scythe-shaped blades, one from each sleeve. Michael acknowledged the weapons with a short, approving nod and retrieved an antique, gnarled dagger with a golden handle and half-meter titanium blade from his belt.
He nodded once more, “You're the one following me,” he said, holding his hand out and signaling for the pursuer to attack first; “It's your move, babe.”
The two blades whistled as they sliced through the air towards one another. Bending backwards, Michael dodged them, but not so far away as to keep them from chipping one of the buttons on his vest. He straightened himself and swung the blade, which emitted a shower of sparks as it collided with the mask on his attacker's face.
“Tsk-tsk, you're not playing fair.”
He twirled the dagger around his fingers and narrowed his eyes before swiping away one of his opponent's swings. He turned the knife around in his hand so that the blade came out the bottom of his clenched fist and swung it frantically at the assassin's chest. He grazed the armor once, which sent out more sparks. He made three sudden steps backwards to avoid the blades that were swung in an alternating motion at him, nearly falling off the stage. He lunged forward and struck his opponent's hand, forcing him to drop one of the swords as it crashed to the cement floor in front of the platform they were fighting on. Another swing and he disarmed him altogether. He bent down and picked up the blade, examined the etching along the length of it, noticing the design was intended as much for blood-letting as for looking at. He dropped it to the floor where its twin already lie at rest.
With a crack of the knuckles, it was made obvious that his attacker wasn't giving up just yet.
“Spunky, aren't you?” Michael mocked.
One of the masked man's claw-knuckled gloves swung through the air towards Michael's face, deflected by the dagger. He raised an eyebrow and countered, but his strike was dodged by a fluid twist; his wrist was caught and crushed in the grip of his attacker, collapsing the nerves and loosening his hold of the blade he held. It fell to the floor with a bright sounding crash.
The wind from a metal-encrusted fist passing by his face at lightning speed momentarily chilled the sweat on his cheek. The sweat that was beading on his forehead began to trickle downward as he righted himself, managed a proper footing and steadied his breath. He felt his heavy pulse slow and begin to normalize before he lunged forward, catching his opposite figure about half-way up, doubling him over and taking him to the ground. The opponent hit the ground with a solid thud, Michael landing on top of him and forcing the air from his lungs as his shoulder drove into his chest and bent his ribs inward slightly before one of them finally gave way with a crack and a muffled cry from its owner.
He felt a metallic object, one of the sharp nodules at the knuckle of one of his attacker's gloves, pierce the right-hand side of his chest, returning the pain he'd just caused his enemy. A streak of pain shot out of his lower ribcage as the veins on his forehead protruded from the intensity of his scream. He spun onto his back and lifted himself to his feet. The blood from his wound staining the torn fabric of his neutral colored vest and the white dress shirt underneath. He stumbled to his right, grasped at the wound and looked at his hand, the blood trickling over his palm, down his wrist and into the ruffled cuff of his sleeve. Once again, he brought mind to the rhythm and depth of his breathing. The dagger he'd held before now lie beyond his masked attacker. He darted forwards and tried again to force his enemy to the ground. His opponent side-stepped him and extended a foot, tripping him. He barreled into the floor and slid forward and into the blade. He took it into his hand and held his other hand over the wound and lie motionless on the floor.
The masked attacker walked calmly and slowly towards him, seeming to be gloating over his triumph, though vaguely limping and embracing his side. His smooth mask, albeit unchanged, appeared almost smiling now, regardless of the lack of 'mouth'. Nearing Michael, he stopped beside him, tilted his head and let out a soft, repetitive rumble; a laugh. Michael fingered the carved handle of the dagger as the masked man lifted one foot off the ground, placed it on his back and began to slowly apply pressure until he could no longer breathe. The pain from the wound shot out in a bright pain like a flare. When he could no longer stand it, and the world around him was starting to fade into blackness, he worked the blade out from under himself and jabbed it deep between the assassin's Achilles tendon and ankle bone. As the man lost balance and began to fall forwards, Michael ripped the blade back and through the tendon itself; a deep red fountain came gushing from his foot as the crimson fluid splashed on the floor. The sight of stringy viscera dangling from the wound forced Michael to look away and wrench. The armored man collapsed on the floor, screeching and writhing about, reaching for his foot.
He regretted it not being a fatal wound. The thrill he'd been anticipating would not be his after all. He'd promised her he'd avoid killing if he could, even if that meant leaving an attacker incapacitated but still alive.
Michael stood and walked towards the door, the attacker still behind him writhing on the floor emitting a loud, shrill, although muffled cry.
He looked at his down at the nearly-black, red splotch around the tear in his vest and let out an amused grunt; “I need a new suit. Nice try.”

Going to try again . . .

I haven't updated this in ages, so it's probably a bit overdue, yeah?
Been kind of busy lately, I guess . . . Finished a couple short stories since I last posted, will post links once they're online. Going to try to keep this up a bit better, too. I'm going to need some rant space, and FB is not an option.

I started and finished a Scarecrow mask this evening. Took about a half-hour to get it scuffed up, sewn up, stitched up, scuffed up again, painted, and scuffed up some more. Also, it's got a draw-string in the back, so it's loose when it's first put on, then I can just reach behind me, grab the string, pull, and it's form-fitting.
Might try a Deadpool costume, too. That'd be easy and fun (red balaclava and black vinyl over the eyes).

I've no use for these, as I'm not geeky enough to go to Comic conventions, yet am geeky enough to want to make costumes.

Speaking of which, I'm going to put together my main character's costume from the story I'm currently working on. At present, his name is Michael, but I'm going to change that. It's a Steampunk-style story about a guy being hunted by, essentially, the entire underworld of the city/state. Black slacks, a white dress shirt with frilly sleeves, a gray vest, sometimes a trench coat over that, swat boots and suspenders. Not going to be too much to do, and most of that can be found on eBay for next to nothing.

Anyways . . . That's what's up lately.