A long hot dry summer comes to an end

It has been an exceptionally wet summer in real life here what with the remnants of several hurricanes dumping on us here lately and all, but other than the occasional post, it’s a been a long, hot, dry summer here. That’s par for the course around here, though. I abandoned anything like regular posting years ago, despite all intentions and pronouncements (private and public).

Also, since I work in the internets business (sortof), I try not to spend too much time doing internetsy stuff when I’m not working. I fail miserably, of course. My name is Steven, and I am an internet addict. I mean, hell, I’m typing this at 11:05 p.m. on a Sunday night when I should be in bed sleeping or reading a good novel.

Though I started the thinking process long before I read it, this piece by Mr. Merlin Mann sums up a lot of my problems with life in the internets, too.

I’m going to unplug a significant portion of my life. The personal part, anyway. I’m on the internets hook for the forseeable future when it comes to my professional life, but that doesn’t mean I have to abuse it, right? Riiiight. We’ll see how it goes.

It feels like fall’s about to start here, and I plan to do these things this Fall and Winter:

  • work in my yard
  • get better at an acoustic instrument (hopefully the banjo again)
  • eat better, cook more
  • pay better (not necessarily more, cause God knows I spend a lot of time on ’em) but better attention to my family
  • go fishing
  • read novels (not just books, but novels)
  • get outside, get a little exercise
  • unplug

Christmas, early 60s style

I’ve always loved this shot, and I finally got it from my mom and scanned it for my collection. It really pings my love for 60s design and culture. I’ll bet my grandmother was really proud of that tree. That’s my dad posing alongside it at their house in Newport, Arkansas. This was taken when he was in college, so some time in the early 60s.

Five Little Fishies: a cautionary tale a short film by Steven Jarvis

5littlefishies title picNot so hot on the heels of our last bit of cinema history comes Five Little Fishies: a cautionary tale. It is a tale of the sea. It is a tale of woe. It’s funny. It’s sad (if you’re a fishie). It’s mostly meant for the grandparents; it’s not as universally appealing as the last opus. (Just over two minutes long; 3.3MB in size; QuickTime necessary for viewing)

Catching Up

It’s been a while, so I should update my status a bit:

  1. RPGs: Haven’t been roleplaying for the last few weeks due to sundry other commitments for members of the group. It’s been a nice break, but I’m anxious to get back to it and soon.
  2. Viewing: Just moments ago finished watching the first season of Deadwood. It’s one of the best shows on TV, right up there with Battlestar Galactica. It (like BSG) is a great example of what great stories can errupt when you throw a lot of characters that are full of conflict into a confined space and force them to confront their issues. To combine this item and the one just previous, I want to play some Dust Devils sometime soon. Deadwood also has two odd, almost competing effects on my speech. On the one hand, it strains mightily my efforts to rein in my pottymouth. On the other, it makes me want to talk (and blog) in a somewhat archaic and formal manner, which may permeate to some small extent this very post. Those of you who are fans of the show will most certainly know what I mean.
  3. Weather: We’re about to get our first round of heavy weather tomorrow. For those of you that don’t live in — or, rather, near as is more accurate — Tornado Alley, that might not mean much. Those of you that do know that anticipation of a big storm system is complex. Having never faced war, I’d liken it to anticipation of a battle, maybe a battle against a stumbling blind idiot god.
  4. Reading: Been re-reading a lot lately, actually, and enjoying the hell out of it. I’ve got a longer piece percolating about a handful of books with related themes that really shaped certain aspects of my personality. You’ll probably recognize just one of them, My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George. It’s the only one of the three that’s still widely available in print. I just discovered last week that another one is now available from a boutique publisher in my very own state who is trying to revive the author’s list. I’m sending him some money (via the wonder of the Internets) today. I’ll report back at length when I’ve received and (re)read that one.
  5. Sickness and health: After a weekend of gastronomic debauchery, my digestive system rebelled. It was a painful twelve hours but I hope to have learnt my lesson. if nothing else, it’s gotten me back on the clean livin’ bandwagon. In partial effort toward that end, I’ve joined the Mr. Bento Fan Club, enjoying my first meal with his assistance just today. See my Flickr stream (linked hereabouts) for the details.
  6. Water: My primary means of recreating or hobbifying for the last ten years or so has been through flyfishing (and other outdoor activities like hiking and birding), mostly for warmwater species (especially smallmouth bass). The unfortunate downside to liking to chase the basses, though, means that there’s precious little to do during the winter (when about all you can catch on the fly is trout, which are plentiful herebouts but stocked, not native). However, the season usually kicks off in early March with a bang: the white bass spawning run. When the water temperature hits around 56F (the exact number is in question and the subject of much heated debate) they charge up out of the depths of the local Army Corps of Engineers impoundment (i.e., big-ass lake) and up the rivers that feed said big-ass lake. The run is on. I aim to do some fishing as soon as the big weather passes, as standing in a river waving a nine-foot length of graphite is generally discouraged when lightning is about.
  7. Family: The Boy is three years old now. It goes fast, folks. Make no mistake about that. Lots of friends and family in town and around this past weekend for the Birthday Party. Much fun was had by all, not the least of which The Boy, who slept in his new tent in his bedroom that night. He’s a funny kid. He’s currently visiting The Wife’s grandparents in the care of The Wife’s parents. He’s only been away for 30 hours, but I miss him like crazy. I can’t even begin to imagine sending him off to college.

I guess that’s about it. If there’s anything else of note, I’ll let you know.

Winter Wonderland 2006: a short film by Steven Jarvis

WinterwonderlandMOV stillWe got a new DV camera (a Canon ZR300) Friday, and I shot a bunch of footage in the snow this weekend. I edited that down to a 3.3 minute move in iMovie HD which I’ve uploaded as a 5.6MB Quicktime movie called Winter Wonderland 2006. It’s mostly just shots of The Boy running around in the snow. Music by Jack Johnson