So I'm working on a couple of conference proposals in the second floor of the Midd library, where I'm currently looking over the tops of trees to the Green Mountains beyond. I am afforded this view by the floor-to-ceiling windows in front of which I sit in a comfy, reclining chair. Although the proposals are due tomorrow and I'm a long way from done, I can't help but stare at the mountains, take a long, deep breath, and relax. I wonder for the umpteenth time what it would be like to do my graduate work in an environment that encourages and promotes sanity and balance, instead of the nyc, the stress capital of the world (almost).
July 2005 Archives
I finished Harry Potter a few days ago, I've just been too lazy to flip the closed sign over again. :) Of course it was wonderful, though I was mildly disappointed by slightly sparser prose than I'm used to from Rowling. Anyway, a few days ago I read a review of HP (in the Times, I think) that centered on the books' appeal to adults, attributing it in part to the nostalgia factor.
As a young girl, I remember hiding for days behind a boxed set of The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis that was a gift from an aunt. The same aunt later gave me a boxed set of The Hobbitt + The Lord of the Rings trilogy, which I found slightly too dense and otherworldy for my tastes at the time. By contrast, The Chronicles of Narnia presented a world parallel to our own in which four normal, ordinary children had fantastic adventures and grew to be kings and queens of the realm. I was sold. (Sound familiar?)
I re-read all of the Chronicles at least once a year, even when I went away to college. It was around this time, however, that I finally realized the extent to which the stories were a Christian allegory. I remember being rather bitterly disappointed for a while, given that I'd become disillusioned with religion - Catholicsm, specifically - in the previous years. I came around though, and still love them to the point that I'm not at all certain of going to see the film adaptation that is coming to theaters in the near future. I can't say the same for Harry Potter - I'm really looking forward to the next film, especially if it's anything like the last one.
So I've been helping out on the periphery of a video game seminar at CET this week. We set up a little game lab, and I've probably spent more time this week playing games than I have for, oh, the past 26 years combined. My favorites so far have been Ratchet and Clank, Halo, some car racing game I can't remember the name of, and of course, Katamari Damacy (crack).
Anyway, right now I'm listening to Ian Bogost of Persuasive Games demo his Dean for Iowa game, talking about political/activist game design based on proceduralization/process intensity. Interesting stuff.
This morning, some friends and I attended the annual 4th of July parade in Warren, VT. The celebration website calls the parade "pretty straight forward [sic]", but I call it anything but. There aren't many places where fully half of the floats are dedicated to protesting (and bashing) the Bush administration! My favorite was a giant, rocking White House, ridden (cowboy-style) by a man playing Bush. The White House is eventually rescued by a raised-from-the-dead George Washington. Oh, to have had a digital camera...