Sunday, July 22, 2012

how come nothing tastes good?

it's that paradox where you're absolutely starving

but nothing in the kitchen sounds good....

Saturday, July 21, 2012

tomato juice season

for my birthday just before i moved to texas, jack gave me a book by elder holland called trusting Jesus. it's a collection of talks that he's given (the ones i recognize, anyway) and contains some of his best, including "cast not away therefore your confidence."

but it also has what i think has replaced elder maxwell's final talk as my new personal favorite. i initially heard "an high priest of good things to come" on a cd that jaime gave me two years ago and liked it then (there was also a talk on there by elder scott that stood out to me more at the time) but she reminded me of it a few weeks ago. even today i took a break from working on my sunday school lesson and pulled the book off of my shelf to read it again.

"an high priest of good things to come." that's not one of the more commonly used titles of the Savior, but it's fascinating to think about; that He is aware of the good things that will come in our lives. we will all go through our own struggles and disappointments, and that doesn't mean we've done anything wrong. but there's hope, and that is wonderful. as elder holland encourages near the close of the talk, "there is help and happiness ahead--lots of it".

walk unafraid.

Friday, July 20, 2012

explosion prevention

i was flipping through my senior year book a few days ago and saw this poem, written by one of my sister's friends. i think i appreciate it now more than i did in 1998. (i honestly don't know if the formatting was due to the eccentricity of the writer or the ineptitude of the yearbook staff. considering the parties involved, it could really be either option)

for those who express doubts about the ambiguity of the
i am filled with extreme apprehension
for i am
afraid of insincerity
and uneasy at the concept of a self-proclaimed artist
he sits on his bed and cries through his pen
he screams with furious flurries of notes
he does these things
not because he wants to
or because he needs points on an assignment,
he does them because he has to
or he will explode

by joshua clausen

Thursday, July 19, 2012

aw, cannot get your ship out

driving home from institute and listening to the radio, i did what i always do when i hear a song that i knew the weird al version first: sang those lyrics over whatever the original's are (i've finally crossed over and actually learned the actual words to most michael jackson songs, but those are the exception.)

and while i still have no idea what lola is about, i did pause to think about what i was singing:
he said, luke stay away from the darker side
but if you start to go astray let the force be your guide
well said, master yoda.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

big smile

it's been four years since i've been to the dentist, but yesterday the good doctor told me that my teeth were all healthy and strong.
i brush twice daily and, in the last year or so, floss semi-regularly.
it's little securities like this that give some stability in an otherwise unpredictable world.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

brown coats

i've always preferred movies to television shows, because i can watch a movie in two hours and be done with it.
"that's precisely why i prefer a good series," said kirk when we were waiting for our table at a steakhouse in dallas a few months ago. "i get to spend so much more time with the characters i love." and i had to admit, he had a point there.

being home all week, i decided there would be no better time to pull that box set of firefly: the complete series off my shelf and give it a whirl. my brother had shown the pilot a few years ago when i let him host movie night (actually, i thought he showed two episodes, but nothing else looked familiar) and i remember thinking it was pretty good. like most things in entertainment, i'm pretty resistant to people endorsing things to me, even if i fully trust them.

two days later, i am now one of those people who knows that the mid-season cancellation of firefly makes it one of the great cinematic losses, alongside the full-length version of greed or murnau's four devils. i'll never get to fully understand why river said "nothing in the 'verse can stop me," and i'll be forever wondering what shepherd's real history is, or if simon would ever get the courage to ask out kaylee.

i've actually got a few connections to the show. i worked on a movie that starred adam baldwin, who played jayne, and i spent a week of my coldest work ever with david boyd, who was the series cinematographer (and a very cheerful guy.) plus, a pre-hsm zac efron played simon in a flashback, and he and i have spent some time together as well.

but that's not why i liked it. i liked it for all the reasons people love joss whedon (you may have heard of his most recent movie called the avengers), namely the post-modern genre-defying characters. but also for making both an "adventures of han solo" sci-fi story and a western at the time time. for making me genuinely laugh and for knowing only to expect the unexpected: evil henchmen talking as tough as they can, only be to kicked into a jet engine; a wife being forced to choose either the captain with whom she's been through countless battles or her husband and choosing her husband before the question's even finished being asked; and pretty much for everything about jayne and kaylee.
i could have done with less inara, although perhaps not quite in the way you might think.

i saw serentiy years ago when it was in the theaters, long before my brother moved in with me and began extolling the virtues of great but ill-fated tv series. i hardly remember a thing about it, which is fine, as seeing it with an understanding of what it is will be like seeing it anew anyway. so, there's that coda to look forward to. but now i'm nervous to think about what other great series there are out there than i'm missing and how much more time i have to start committing. firefly was only two days. that's just enough time to start getting attached.

Monday, July 16, 2012


blast. the post i was trying to write for today just wasn't coming out right. i guess it needs to simmer a little while longer.

but i saw this and found it interesting. it's funny: there are people who could describe me on either side, here. i daresay that those who know me would say i'm an extrovert, but those who know me best might recognize numbers on the first list.

although the truth is that we're all more complicated than two different categories can neatly sum up.
but generalizations and categories are just so darn convenient.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

harry potter or a hobo

as i've been churning out feeble storyboards for a project i'm working on, i've been breaking the commandments and coveting the amazing drawing talents of one of my friends. i wish i could draw like her. and so i figure i may as well at least let you in on her work.

on the right side of my blog here is my collection of other peoples' blogs that i read. when i first added that, there were only a handful: my brother's, my sister's, jack and natalie's, em's, and some ramblings and randomness. now, the list is substantially longer, including that guy who's (very slowly) reviewing every movie in the criterion collection and that girl who's really into unicorns.

but, nestled between all of those nice blogs where young mothers talk about the ups and downs of parenthood is one that i realize most of you probably have never bothered to check out (although, judging by jaime's recent post, she's discovered it....) it's called "verbal vomit." appealing, i know. it's also extremely funny. and amusing. and really kind of twisted and disturbing. ...not in a late-night-show-on-adult-swim kind of way, just... well, twisted and disturbing (but she's still a byu student, so you don't need to worry. much)

the site is drawn by my friend hannah. i met her at some party of kristin's a while ago (she facebook friended me, thank you very much), although i'd been hearing stories of her for a while. and i've been following her blog about as long as the rest of the internet has.

see, hannah's blog is what i'd dreamed this little island would become: so brilliant and funny that LOTS of people read it. she kind of exploded into popularity when she wrote a post about "hipsters." it "went viral", the dream of any internet author, and kristin recounted the story of her and hannah refreshing the blog and watching the number of followers continue to go up. i couldn't find a current count on her site, but i believe they said it topped off somewhere around 700.

to further put things into perspective, the original "how to be a hipster" post has 35,000+ likes. not "views", "likes." my entire blog barely has 32,000 visits, and a good percentage of those are from me checking back to see if the "dang" count on my recent post has moved from 1 to 2.

what i wouldn't give for
my work to look like this
as i said at the beginning, it's hannah's drawings that really bring her stories to life. she's a talented and well-training figure drawer(?), which is the foundation for all drawing and translates into well-proportioned characters of any sort. plus, her sense of humor is warped just enough (probably too much, actually) to really get the details of harry potter, more hipsters, harry potter, making fun of twilight, cow videos (not what you think, trust me), or even harry potter.

so, if you do happen to have some free time or are looking for something a little different, check out

her wedding invitation also looked amazing. artists....

Friday, July 13, 2012

jeffrey g.'s week off

i was told to take the week off from work and haven't regretted it. even better, i haven't been plagued by boredom. i've been slowing working on storyboards from a projects. they're taking me much longer than i planned because i'm not feeling well, i'm a pretty lousy artist, and the response delay on my ipad is just enough to make it tricky but not impractical. because i don't have any of the usual "i'm sick" symptoms like aches, congestion, and the like, it's easy to feel like i'm not sick and tell myself that i can stop acting like it to fool my mom. then i try to move and yes, it's very apparent that it is possible to be ill and not have a runny nose. i've watched a lot of movies this week, but nearly all of them have been "background" movies, since i've been trying to get those darn storyboards done (still have some ways to go on them.) so, no criterions this week, sadly. i've had friends willing to run to the store and pick up things that i've needed, which is mostly gatorade. my "so you've got mono" pamphlet told me to drink plenty of energy drinks and it's been helping. and while going out and about isn't impossible (i made the effort to go watch gene kelly dance last night), it is a real bugger of a nuisance and i've been genuinely grateful for the help. the grocery store also had blueberries on sale and so i've been eating them by the cup full, just like i did from the craft services table on 127. i've learned that even a 45-minute phone conversation can wear me out and am looking forward to getting back to firefly as soon as i publish this.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

if you've seen one, you've seen them all

i'm not one to decry modern movies, claiming that they don't make good pictures anymore. every year produces films that remind me why i love the cinema so much.
but even though they still make good movies, they don't make 'em like they used to. and it's an absolute joy to be able to see the great ones on the big screen. i missed citizen kane earlier this summer, but i'm hoping to make it to north by northwest next week and i got to see singin' in the rain tonight.

it's the little things in life.

Monday, July 09, 2012

mano a mono

on the fourth of july i was frantically writing a long final paper that was due at 10:00 p.m. that evening. this is how you celebrate independence day when your america-loving texas university requires that teachers submit their grades by noon on july 5. i was feeling kind of achy but attributed it to sitting at my desk all day.

on thursday i was feeling weak and so made it a "low-key" day at work, keeping my door mostly closed, keeping my music quiet, and keeping to myself as i edited my video. friday was the same. as people would stop by, i'd explain that i wasn't feeling grouchy or antisocial, just mellow.

friday night, however, got bad. i woke up with terrible chills. hating the idea of leaving my meager-but-still-warm-ish bed, i weakly staggered to the living room to retrieve the warmest blanket i have. and, wrapped in both a blanket and down comforter, spent the next two hours shivering uncontrollably.

to break up the monotony, i started feeling extremely feverish as the sky was beginning to lighten. soon i was in the world of extremes only, where even having half a leg under a blanket was intolerably hot and leaving myself uncovered in any way felt like certain hypothermia. i feebly sang myself hymns as the only form of comfort i could come up with.

at some point in this delirium, i grabbed my ipad and downloaded the web md app. showing me a picture of a startled-looking naked human (neither male nor female), i was told to point where it hurt. since i couldn't just palm-mash the whole guy, i picked from a list. "chills," "fever," and "fatigue" were my symptoms (and was very grateful that "craving to eat ice, dirt, or paper" was not.)
based on this, my app gave me some of the following possibilities:
  • lyme disease
  • aseptic meningitis
  • dengue fever
  • cryptococcosis
  • hepatitis (a or b)
  • noroviruses (norwalk-like viruses) (jess! the norwalk!)
despite the fact that, from what i remembered of high school health classes, most of those could seriously kill me or mess me up big time, i was nonplussed. on saturday, a friend suggested that it sounded like the flu (which was another of web md's potential diagnoses.) i thought the flu included nausea and all that fun stuff, but apparently not necessarily. so, i spent saturday watching movies and thinking i had some flu variant. on sunday evening, though, when my symptoms hadn't really changed at all, my parents both encouraged me to see a doctor.

the student health center once told my friend that she might have cancer. she didn't. and so, with recommendations ranging from "yeah, they're fine" to "my mom almost died there," i showed up as a walk-in because they don't charge me a co-pay.

an older female doctor asked my symptoms, groped me up and down, and was especially impressed with how swollen the nodes in my throat had become (this was kind of a recent development, making me glad i waited until today to come in.) at the and of the exam, she said that it's likely mono.

hooray. i somehow got "the kissing disease." she explained that it can also come from drinking fountains, which is a much lamer way to get it.

still, i felt better. what little i knew of mono was that it just made you really tired, but that was it. it didn't sound disgusting like "lyme disease" or even any "disease" it all; it's just like getting turned down to "low" for a while. i was ok with having mono. i felt like a popular kid.

before she sent me down to the lab for some blood tests and a tonsil swab just to make sure it isn't strep throat, she handed me a pamphlet. the cover showed a male model trying to look as cool as vanilla ice himself, while the top had a row of diverse college-aged faces, all looking somewhere between stoic and stunned. "so you've got mono..." the title read, and i couldn't help but feel like i'd just contracted an std.

i remember hearing someone talk about how they had mono once and it knocked them out for months, but my thoughtful pamphlet explained that it usually lasts two weeks although it can go up to four or six. and it promised me "probably the worst sore throat you've ever had," so i've got that to look forward to.

despite my upfront reassurance that i was not in any way contagious through casual contact, both my bosses at work scolded me and sent me back home within an hour and a half, declaring that i should be resting. so, i'm considering taking tomorrow off.
tonight, though, i'm just wishing i had someone to kiss.

Monday, July 02, 2012

wake up

dear girl::

so, something's been bothering me lately and we need to talk about it.

it's this: life is pretty good right now.
not in the "i'm directing major car commercials in europe and just bought a second home in the bay area" way, but more of a "i love my job, am on track to have a better job than most of your ex-boyfriends (and, let's be honest; that one guy was going to be rich but he'd be gone 300+ days out of the year anyway), and have free time in the evenings that i should be spending with you" kind of way.

and i wish you were here.
heck, i'm not even wishing for us to be married so that we could say goodnight and stay together. but my roommates are more or less gone for a month; we'd have the whole house to ourselves to hang out and just do whatever we dang well feel like together. and with my class wrapping up on wednesday, there's plenty of time for a day trip to san antonio or to go through the whole lord of the rings trilogy (extended editions, naturally.)

so, what is it that you're doing that's better than being with me? are finishing up your graduate degree in boston? playing the wild lead guitarist for a band at a bar in indiana? (i'm less concerned about your past and more interested in our future...) maybe you're just down the road in some houston suburb, looking out your window at the same sky that i'm looking at.

until you get your act together, i'm doing what i can to make the best of my life on my own, but so far i haven't found anything that wouldn't be better with the two of us.

miss you,

-->jeff *

p.s. i'm going to see singin' in the rain in the theater next week. i wish you could come, because i know you love it, too (because, if you don't then i really can't see us working out. that's kind of a deal-breaker; sorry.)