1. People Watching
Especially now that I live in the city, I am pretty much constantly surrounded by people everywhere I go. People engaged in the activities of their own lives, completely oblivious to observations from all around them. If the government can do it, then so can I, as far as I’m concerned.
Since I’ve always been kind of on the outside, I found it necessary to watch people, how they act with and around each other, how they act when they’re alone. I’ve also been kind of a constant shoulder and source of advice for a lot of my friends, some of whom were in relationships with each other and who for whatever reason looked to me to help sort it out.
So before I ever started really studying psychology and anthropology I was already studying the people around me. And let me tell you, people are FASCINATING in an incredibly mundane way.
Ever been in a restaurant and seen a date that wasn’t going so well? Not like a complete wash but one person is obviously just NOT feeling the date that much? It’s so funny to watch everyone try to squirm around the discomfort. Even just living a few blocks from a bar or club is a really interesting study in human behavior. Not to mention all the entertainment of wasted people trying to get out of DUIs.
2. INCESSANT AUDIOVISUAL BACKGROUND ENTERTAINMENT
I would desperately like to blame this one on my friend. I’d cite all the Sorceror’s Stone, Princess Diaries, and a number of other movies I probably couldn’t remember if I tried. But I’ll give you another list instead.
- Donovan’s Reef
- An American Tale
- Mrs. Doubtfire
- Boondock Saints
- Ocean’s Eleven
What is this list of things, you ask? These are movies, or in one case a TV show, that I have at one time or another been forbidden from watching because I’d already watched it so much that everyone else I live with hates me, the movie, the director, and the actors. For a while I had numbers 4-6 on a loop for about six months before my roommates finally said no more. My parents hid Donovan’s Reef from me when I was in the second grade for like a month, ditto with American Tale. Mrs. Doubtfire I would watch, rewind, watch, rewind, and watch again pretty much every day after school for a while.
And for the most part, I wasn’t really watching them. The first couple it’s less true because I was a kid and just hadn’t developed a proper capacity for multi-tasking yet. But I have synchronized sense-memories related to sound and sight. The longest I EVER survived playing the Original Star Trek game for the GameBoy was one time in Fayetteville when Fox aired the Bermuda Triangle episode of Tail Spin.
But I love to have familiar background entertainment. In a perfect world, I would have a screen that just played whatever show or movie I wanted to watch, and then other screen space for other shit. It actively bothers me that I can’t play my PS3 and watch videos on my PC at the same time.
So I have no one to blame but myself.
Do I REALLY need to say anything else?
If so, just listen to this shit right here.
4. The Saxophone
If I have to say any more about this one, then I don’t want to live on this planet anymore.
5. Milla Jovovich
Now, before I run the risk of sounding creepy and/or the bad kind of crazy, let me clarify. First things first: go here. Listen to her music. And then I want you to remember all the movies she’s been in. Like Dazed and Confused, The Fifth Element, Ultraviolet, and yes, those movies more or less based on a certain zombie game owned by CapCom. And the fact that she’s a model. And she does all of this shit at the same time. Milla is made of 100% motherfucking amazing. She and Luc Besson more or less concocted an alien language for Leeloo to speak in Fifth Element, and the two of them would speak it to each other throughout the filming. Watch any DVD of a movie she’s in with the commentary track on, and you will find out two things about her from the people who have worked with her: she is incredibly humble and gracious, and she gives 135%. ALL. THE FUCKING. TIME. A very good example of this is found in the DVD Cast Commentary for Resident Evil 2. The movie was filmed in Canada in winter, and when the hands were bringing Milla her coat to keep her warm, she chided them and insisted that they go get coffee for all the zombie extras who were so very obviously freezing their asses off. This woman is pure class.
5. Tea…Yeah Tea.
You may notice this phrase occuring from time to time and ask yourself whether I’m talking about tea, or if it’s supposed to be something else…or whatever.
No. Obviously it’s not tea. But I’m not going to tell you what it is either. I’m fairly sure if you’ve been paying any attention I don’t need to, but it most certainly warrants being here on this list of things I do love so dearly.
I drink tea…yea tea pretty much always. You can judge me all you want, but the results speak for themselves. And before you say anything, I was lazy, absent-minded, and hungry all the time before I started drinking tea…yeah tea. The fact of the matter is I have a bachelor’s degree and am beyond capable at my job. And I’m not afraid to prove it in an “acceptable” scenario before even remotely addressing the issue. I got called into work during a cup of tea…yea tea on a night off, and I went in and did the damn thing like a boss and then left. And a few days later I informed the manager who had called me in what had happened, and that if he had ever had any worries about my ability to function, he had his answer already. And I’ve had that conversation with other managers at other places. I won’t, however, drink booze before I work.
At this point in my life it possesses spiritual, mental, and recreational value. I am not an actual shaman by any stretch of the imagination, but I do engage in attempts at higher thought with the aid of an altered state of consciousness…and you might be surprised what you’d find, but I’m starting to veer towards some other things better left for another topic. The people who know me are more than aware that a little bit of chill the hell out and slow the hell down is kind of exactly what I need, and it’s infinitely less expensive than visits to shrinks and pills with side effects requiring more pills. As the legislation regarding tea…yea tea becomes more and more rational and in-line with modern sensibilities, my dream of being able to grow my own comes closer to being possible, because to be honest I would rather be as removed as possible from some of the foreign interests that ultimately receive the money I spend. I prefer self-sustainability anyway.
6. Motherfucking Thin Mints
Insert Girl Scout Cookie of Your Choice. Into your Mouth. Have I missed cookie season this year?
I have to use the blanket term here because it encompasses A LOT within certain contexts. I am not well-versed in many languages. I know a little Spanish (mostly Mexican Spanish) and a little German. But for the most part, I chose to become as masterful as I could in my native language. I’m an excellent speller, I have a healthy respect for proper grammar, and I love wordplay. Puns, alliterations, assonance, syntax, semantics, simile, metaphor, there’s just so much to love. I get in trouble with a lot of people for arguing semantics and/or being a smartass, and while I’m not saying that I’m innocent of these things 100% of the time, I will cop out and insist on the importance of semantics in clear communication. Yes I’m arguing semantics, because semantics are fucking important.