Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Decision

There are moments in life when a decision is made. Sometimes decisions are made by carefully weighing the pros and cons of the situation and then choosing the option with the best outcome. This isn’t about those decisions.
When I was in fourth grade I was on an AAU basketball team. If you don’t know, AAU teams are traveling teams. You have to make the team, unlike rec leagues. It’s basically the same idea as being on your school team, but in elementary school.
When I was on the AAU team, I was just barely a good enough player to really belong on the team. There was a brief time before I was on that team that I was good enough, and a brief time a few years later. But at that time I was just barely able to get by on this level of competition.
But I was me, even back in the fourth grade. I could have been a much better basketball player than I turned out to be. If I had practiced and really honed my skills who knows… I could have been good enough to play on a low level college team. Like FAU or something.
But I didn’t want to practice. I just wanted to play. Practicing was work, and basketball was a game. So I wasn’t really that into the AAU team, but I was on it and it was a responsibility of mine to go to the practices and whatnot.
I don’t remember really not liking being on the team, but I’m sure I must not have for this anecdote to exist. I don’t remember anything leading up to it, I just remember the decision.
I was making friends with a kid in my class at the time. Brian Susi. And I wanted to hang out with him outside of school, so we were trying to make plans. And all of the time that we could possibly have found to get together was taken up by the AAU team practices. So, that was it. That was the last straw. I quit the team.
That’s really the only example I can remember clearly of when a decision was made in this fashion. Something happened and then that was just it. No more of this, I’m making a decision to change things. For better or worse. I was pissed and the situation was to be remedied.
I think when I decided to break up with Meg it was under similar circumstances, but I don’t really remember that nearly as clearly. So we’ll say it’s just been the one time in my life.
Until today.
Today was my birthday. That doesn’t really mean all that much to me. I don’t like to make a big deal out of it or anything. My friends took me out to dinner and bought me a clock, and that was nice. But I didn’t go out of my way to remind anyone my birthday was coming up, and I would have been perfectly fine if they hadn’t remembered or done anything special for me.
But still, even though birthdays aren’t that big a deal… it’s nice to have a nice day.
This year I had to work. That sucks, but I have responsibilities at work, and having to work on your birthday is one of the realities of the real world.
The amount of work I had to do today was substantial, and not fun. But it was work… it didn’t overly upset me that it wasn’t a fun day. And I had been expecting it.
The problem is, there was too much work for me to finish today. And I didn’t have any help. So, at some point during the day my store manager walked into the stock room and sort of looked around and said something like “Too much work today without any help, huh?”
“Yeah,” I agreed.
“Well,” he said “I guess you’ll have to come in tomorrow at 6:00.”
He wasn’t kidding.
I could have stayed a few hours late and finished up today. But it was my birthday. My parents were planning to take me out to dinner, like we’ve done every year. And you know what? Even if it wasn’t my birthday… schedule me the help or schedule me enough hours to get the job done. Don’t expect me to be able to stay late or come in early with no notice like that. I was already working my entire shift through without taking a break to try to get this work done.
So, that was it. Decision made. I can’t stay working at this place forever. I didn’t want to stay there forever anyway, but I also haven’t been seriously considering other options. Now that changes.
So now I’m going to be doing the LSAT thing. I don’t know if it’s going to work out for me. I don’t know if I can get a high enough LSAT score to offset my fairly poor undergrad GPA, and I don’t know if I can hack it in law school even if I can get in. But this is now the second, or possibly third, time that I’ve just gotten pissed and decided, “No more. This situation has become untenable. A change needs to be made.”

Sunday, November 1, 2009

LSATs and Dreams

I came out here tonight with very little in the way of purpose. But I wanted to type on my netbook, and I need to go to sleep early tonight so I don’t have time to properly devote to working on the next episode of No School For Wizardry. So you get this.
Mike’s working on a novel this month. The idea of writing a novel scares me. Good luck Mike.
I only have a vague idea of where I’m going with No School For Wizardry, and I think I would need to have a much more concrete idea of a particular story that I would want to tell in order to write a worthwhile novel. I have some basic events planned for the series, but nothing’s really solid. The reason I like writing the serial format is because it allows for a certain amount of meandering. I think I’m doing too much of that at the moment though. It’s taking me far too long to get through what is, more or less, still the introduction. I think that has a lot to do with it being such short installments spread out a week apart.
The point is, novels scare me and Mike’s decided to write one this month. So good luck to him.
I, on the other hand, and still trying to build myself up an archive on SerialShorts and then maybe start advertising or something. I need to figure out how to work on my pacing a bit better.
Aside from that, Lior is taking his LSATs in a month. So good luck to him.
I’m thinking about studying and taking the LSATs also. I’m at a point now where I’m full time at work, but it’s kind of a crappy job. I don’t hate it or anything, but I certainly don’t want to be doing it for the rest of my life. I think my options at this point are either work at Kohls forever, or go back to school for something.
I’ve always known I need to go back to school for something. The problem for me has always been that I don’t know what to go back to school for. Creative Writing was kind of a waste of a major, and that was because I don’t really have any career goals that I’m passionate about.
But I’ve always liked law. Well, not always. I’ve recently liked law. The little bit that I’ve been exposed to, anyway. I thought jury duty was incredibly interesting, and there’s a semi-weekly column on Joystiq about the various copyright and other law related stuff going on in the world of video games, and I always find myself interested in that kind of stuff.
So for a while I’ve had law school in the back of my mind. But I’m not a very good student. My grades in college were not spectacular. So, for one thing, I would have trouble getting into a good law school. Lior thinks I wouldn’t have too much trouble if I studied for and got a high mark on my LSATs, but therein lies another problem. I’m not good at all at studying. I don’t know how to do it. I’ve never done it.
I don’t really know what the LSATs entail. I imagine “studying” for the LSATs is, more or less, taking a lot of practice tests and getting used to the logic and reading skills necessary for the test moreso than it’s memorizing laws or dates or vocabulary or anything. So I might be able to do that, but I have trouble being self motivating outside of an actual classroom or work location.
I’m doing a little bit, but not very much, better at that lately. I’ve kept up the update schedule on SerialShorts so far, but I’m really falling behind a little bit in maintaining a buffer of stories between what’s been posted and what I have written waiting to be posted.
So, assuming I’ve gotten at least a little better at self motivation, and I could study up for the LSATs and pull a high enough mark to get into a good school… I’m not good at school. I would have to leave Kohls, take out a loan, and really put everything into school. I don’t know if I’m capable of that. I’m worried I’ll go through with the test and enrolling, and then half ass the actual classes and just fail out and be right back where I started, but with debt.
But there’s always the chance that I could get into the same school as Lior and we could go through law school together. That would be neat.
Switching gears, I had a long conversation with Emily last night that started with Mike’s recent tirade against some interpretations of XKCD. Mike wrote a particularly scathing satire of those interpretations. Emily seemed to agree with the initial interpretations in the first place, and not really get the satire Mike was employing. The conversation didn’t stay with the XKCD thing very long, so it’s entirely possible that I’m completely misrepresenting both her stance on the subject and her understanding. It’s not really important, except to say that Mike is right and that Emily turned the conversation into being about me.
I don’t know why I bother bringing this up at all. The conversation was long, and pretty much a colossal waste of time. I don’t think I fully agree with either stance, mine or hers, from the conversation. I don’t want to go into it, really, but the long and short of it is that Emily doesn’t think I know how to be a person. It all had to do with the level of brutal honesty that’s appropriate for a relationship. Also that I think cutting her hair short makes her face look fat.
Maybe I’ll go into the specifics of the conversation and my stance on it in another post. I could probably do a whole post on it, to be honest. I don’t feel like doing that now, though.
But I went to sleep pretty much right after finishing up with Emily. I don’t mean to say that this conversation had any real sort of effect on me, because it didn’t, really. I don’t think she was right, and I don’t really even think I was right. But as a result of, I think, the whole ordeal I woke up this morning from a dream that I got an email from Stacy saying that she and her current boyfriend were in some sort of trouble and had a court date and she wanted help from me.
The reason this woke me up was the reaction it provoked from me. I woke up in the midst of composing an email back to her telling her to fuck off and that she has no right asking me for anything and that I hoped she got whatever it was that was coming to her.
Again, I don’t really know why I’m mentioning this. I don’t have an interpretation of what this little snippet of a dream, or what my reaction to it means in a psychological sense, or any other sort of sense either. Except that it left me with a feeling of, I’d really like to help her… mostly because whenever anyone asks me for help with something I want to try and help. But also, fuck her. She doesn’t deserve anything from me, and I would also really like to be able to hurt her.
That’s not a nice thing to say. I mean about myself. It’s not a nice thing to want specifically to hurt someone. Vengeance is not a virtue. But still. That’s the way it goes.
I don’t have any more things to say at the moment. I don’t really feel that this is a good note to end a post on, but once again that’s the way it goes.