Tag: Gym

Sharknado 6 Ruined Me

Sharknado 6 Ruined Me

Today was a day where I felt pretty good about myself.

In the wake of a hangout that went past 1:00 a.m., I still got up and did some work editing for Boom. Then I went to the gym and got a nice hour’s worth of a workout before making myself a pretty sweet looking sandwich for lunch.

Good stuff all things considered.

But then. We decided to watch the sixth Sharknado movie that premiered earlier.

I’m not sure I’ll ever be the same after that. I might just be more broken by existential dread than I can truly convey through text. In spite of that concern, I shall try my best.

For those of you who are not aware of this bizarre little corner of pop culture history — Though I can’t imagine there are many people out there who haven’t heard of it considering the almost unexplainable popularity of the series — Sharknado was a movie released by the Syfy network in 2013 starring Ian Ziering and Tara Reid.

The best way I can think to describe the film is that it was one in a long line of shark-themed, low-budget disaster parody films put out by the network. Other classic examples included Ghost Shark and Sharktopus.

These are all super real. And surprisingly popular as Z-grade dumb parody fun for those of us who enjoy cheesy science fiction schlock.

But… Sharknado was different. Sharknado, by some combination of washed-up actors, a ridiculous premise and laughably horrible CGI, became a phenomenon. A phenomenon big enough to spawn five sequels.

Because my family happens to be a fan of dumb, awful movies like this, we’ve watched every single one over the last five or so years. I’m not going to say I’m proud of that, but it’s a thing we do. It’s dumb fun.

Admittedly, I don’t remember any significant detail past the third movie. Because they got increasingly ridiculous, complex and overblown with each entry. Dare I say… They jumped the shark.

The creators probably intended for that exact cliché to show up when discussing their work.

The first Sharknado was a somewhat contained story, where the hero Fin (fish joke ha ha) has to rescue his family after a Sharknado touches down in Santa Monica and starts to destroy the surrounding Los Angeles area.

The second was basically the same story but in New York. Cue hopping around on taxi cabs and other such predictable New York jokes, plus a half a billion cameos from famous people hoping to jump on the meme.

The third was more of a world-wide scale, saving the president of the U.S. and dealing with Universal Studios Florida and… Going into space I think?

Unless that was the fourth movie, which of course made a Force Awakens joke in the title. But like I said I don’t remember any of that movie, or the fifth one. Something happened in Niagara Falls, and there were robot clones and uhh… Yeah.

Then of course we come to the newest, presumably final entry in the series. Sharknado 6: The Last One.

The last one until someone decides we can bring the series back with a rebooted cast and do it all again, I guess.

Sharknado 6 took things above and beyond where we had already been by figuring if we’ve destroyed the entire planet with Sharknados, we might as well do the same thing throughout history. That’s right, it’s a time travel story. With everyone hoping to stop Sharknados in the past so they can save the future.

It’s about as contrived and derivative as it sounds, and it’s meant to be. Hell, the amount of times they reference Back to the Future is astounding.

The characters literally travel using a flux capacitor, which in at least one situation requires them to use a train to travel at 88 miles per hour.

Even though I’m 100 percent sure the conflict of BttF 3 was needing to speed up a steam train because it didn’t go fast enough, I’ll let it slide.

Most of the jokes you’d expect to appear to appear based on the periods of time they go through in the movie. First it’s pre-history, then the American Revolution, the Old West, the 1950s and eventually culminating in the early 2010s where they stop the Sharknado that started the whole mess in the first place.

Of course there’s all sorts of underlying plot with the main characters struggling to move beyond their past experiences and not use time travel to try to alter history (even though the whole plot is literally about altering history?). But that doesn’t really matter. The series has basically retconned everything at least four times so far, and characters constantly come back from the dead. The film even ends with everyone back at the beginning of the first movie but different, a circumstance where everyone is happy and alive and life is perfect for all.

If anything I’d argue it’s mostly a forgettable, lackluster romp compared to those early entries with just a sense that everything is going through the motions needed to finally end it all.

But there were at least two scenes that made me truly question my existence. So I can’t believe I’m saying this, but if you’re interested in Sharknado 6 and don’t want to be spoiled, don’t read on.

The first is during a stop in ancient Europe, the 1400s or so. Whenever King Arthur lore happened because of course that’s the chief influence they’re using.

This scene of the movie has arguably the most recognizable modern-day cameos in it.

Neil deGrasse Tyson shows up playing the wizard Merlin. Which a first probably seems as strange to you as it did to me, why would you cast one of the most recognizable science communicators of all time to play one of the most famous magic-users of history?

Because time travel joke. That’s the whole reason. Merlin knows some things about time travel.

But that’s not all, folks. The drag queen Alaska Thunderfuck 5000 (also actual name, I’m not screwing with you I swear) plays an evil queen that fights with swords and shoots fireballs.

They have a moment of talking with one another in the film.

So we are in a universe where a drag queen named Thunderfuck and Neil deGrasse fucking Tyson are acting against one another in a movie about time travel being used to stop the world from ending because of tornados full of sharks.

Hallelujah, we truly are in the darkest timeline.

There’s also a scene toward the end of the movie where everyone goes to the year 20013 — because obviously someone accidentally added an extra 0 onto the flux capacitor.

That future, for being in an age where Earth would most definitely be dead and gone, looks okay. Everything’s just vaguely dilapidated.

But then. Tara Reid shows up.

Which doesn’t sound like a big deal, but for context she had died during a stop in the year 1997.

As it turns out, and bear with me on this one, the robotic clone of Tara Reid — who played a significant role in the fifth movie and then just became a severed head MacGuffin in the sixth movie who blew up Sharknados with laser eyes — survived past all other human beings and created an army of robot Tara Reids and robot sharks to ensure that she could live forever.

So the third act of the movie becomes Fin having to set the timeline right by completely fucking it up in order to stop evil robot queen Tara Reid from ending humanity so she could rule forever.

In an otherwise lackluster movie, these two moments blew my god damn mind. They’re such things that I never needed to see that I don’t think I’ll ever be the same.

If you think I’m getting to some point with this whole post, I’m not.

I just wanted to share these things with you so that you don’t have to go shatter your concept of reality by watching Sharknado 6.

It’s not worth it guys.

Actually it’s very worth it It’s definitely not worth it.

Save yourself.

Be free from the Sharknado.

That’s my public service announcement for the day.

Family Time

Family Time

So I’m going to level with you guys. I don’t have anything to talk about today.

I went to the gym again for a while this afternoon. But that’s about the most noteworthy thing I can think of. Somehow the rest of the day just kind of… Blurred by.

Am I just stuck in some kind of post-Rick and Morty time dilation?

Probably.

But that’s beside the point, because the point is I’m just kind of phoning this one in today. Figured if I couldn’t come up with anything else to talk about, I might as well just post a cute picture of me out to dinner with the family and leave it at that with some kind of inspirational message.

Have dinner with your family, everyone. It’s nice.

Unless your family is awful.

If they aren’t, then do it. Who knows, you might find out that Weezer did a cover of Toto’s memeworthy song ‘Africa.’ Or that Bowling for Soup had a song called ‘My Wena’ where they had a girl walk around dressed like a giant penis and do things like spit milk at the band members.

Because that’s real. Straight from the same band that did the Phineas and Ferb theme song for everyone’s favorite squeaky clean corporate Disney. Welcome to the early 2000s.

Also don’t mind Alyson.

She’s a

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Tired.

She asked me to put that joke in here so if you want to blame anyone, she’s your girl.

Also, there’s some physical proof that we’re both still stuck on Disney Crossy Road for whatever reason. God only knows how such a dumb game could be so addictive.

Running on Empty

Running on Empty

What’s this? Another blog post being written after I was at the gym?

Gee whiz. Who would’ve guessed.

But wait, this time my joking references to being at the gym serves more of a purpose than slyly telling the world that one day I’m going to be a swole boi. I actually have something gym-related to discuss!

Though briefly considering it’s not a super complex subject and also I’m hanging with people tonight. So won’t be spending a hell of a lot of time on this.

While my Featured Image for the day might look like an advertising picture for Planet Fitness, I assure you that it was taken more for the line of treadmills in the background than for the logo in the foreground. I just tried to angle my camera in such a way that I wouldn’t be grabbing anyone’s head, even from the back.

Because you know it’s a gym. Wouldn’t be right to accidentally point out anybody despite their anonymity to me personally.

I wanted to grab a photo of some of the treadmills because I had (what I feel was) an interesting observation.

Are public gyms vaguely totalitarian in design?

Now don’t click off just yet. I don’t actually have anything malicious to say about gyms. I’ve quite enjoyed actually regularly going to one for once in my life. Makes me feel good, feel fit. Spry even.

I just feel like there’s something kind of 1984-looking about a bunch of total strangers gathering together and standing next to one another, totally oblivious to one another’s struggles, each focusing on this strange pursuit of attractiveness our society forces upon us from birth.

What, too heavy?

Alright fine it’s not like I’m genuinely concerned the treadmills in the gym are powering some kind of mind control device in the back room. I just think it’s kind of bizarre to imagine.

Same thing often comes to mind when I’m stuck in traffic, actually. Looking around, seeing everyone in the bubble of their vehicles minding their own business.

I know there’s definitely a psychological idea about being enclosed in such a situation and how it effects one’s empathy in regards to other people… But it’s still pretty fascinating to just kind of see all those brain doodads in action.

Now I’m sure you must be wondering where I’m going with this.

Well.

I’m not really going anywhere with this.

I just wanted to pose that idea out into the aether. Seemed like a good space filler considering I spent the rest of the afternoon watching movies and eating pizza.

The antithesis of my gym workout I know. But what can I say. Hanging out with friends has its benefits.

That’s really about all I have to say on the matter actually, because I’m really enjoying re-watching Emperor’s New Groove.

So I guess if you’ve got any thoughts on the strange construction ethics of public gyms, let me know somewhere on the Internet.

A Short Essay on Short Essays

A Short Essay on Short Essays

I don’t know why I insist on writing these posts after going to the gym lately, because really it’s just detrimental for my ability to imagine and write coherent posts.

Though perhaps not as much as the insufferable heat wave yesterday.

I’ll count my blessings where I can.

Speaking of that heat killing all of my motivation, it seems I’ve been fluctuating between work-focused and not at all work-focused quite a bit the past few days. After doing next to nothing yesterday, today I actually got my stuff together enough to be productive. Notably with a job application I’ve been working on that is, admittedly, a far-flung idea for me to feel completely justified talking about in-depth.

Doing that job application has gotten me thinking a little bit about one part of this app, and many others for that matter, that feels somewhat strange to me at the moment.

The personal essay.

I don’t typically put a lot of thought into the idea of writing essays. Growing up I put myself through the wringer of the Advanced Placement course pathway in high school, which included AP Language and AP Literature. We had to write a lot of essays in those classes to prepare us for the AP exams, so I was used to the idea.

Essays also continued to be synonymous with college courses. Every undergraduate-level class has some kind of writing requirement and all of my Communications courses are all about writing.

As a result, you would think essay requirements showing up in job applications would just come in stride.

Which, to be fair, they do for the most part. Whenever I’ve applied for the Daily Titan an essay has always been required, for example.

But for some reason the essay that was asked of me in this current job application stuck out as… The worst, most stand-out part of it.

It took me a little while to figure out exactly why. But I think the conclusion I’ve come to says something about me and the way I tend to approach work.

For me essays make a lot more sense in a job application when they ask for some kind of very specific information. Using the Daily Titan application as an example, the essay portion of that involves answering a couple of questions pertaining to the potential job.

What does the paper do well? What does it not do well? What can you bring to the job you’re applying for that would make it better?

Things like that.

Sure it’s arguably formulaic to go down this route, but the sense of direction those questions bring do make for a straight-forward task. Answering the questions, while utilizing them as conduits for inserting stories of one’s experience as a means of showcasing that individual’s abilities.

The application I’ve been working on doesn’t really have any sort of driving questions like this to give potential employees a sense of direction.

As far as premise goes, this application simply asks for an autobiographical essay to tell the hiring staff something that cannot be garnered from the surrounding questions in the application. Given the fact that it already asks for degree-earning information, references and work samples outside of the essay, that leaves a vague opening for what can be written.

That somewhat vague nature exacerbates a potential pitfall in writing the essay. Or at least it does in my head where I’m more than likely over thinking things, but that’s another story.

If you have an essay for a fairly serious job application essentially asking you to write about anything you want outside of your direct work experience, where is the line in terms of being too casual or not casual enough?

Obviously the whole thing can’t just be the tale of how you won X reward or accomplished Y task, but it’s also probably not great form to do something jokey or entirely non-serious since the serious aspects might be in one’s resume off the bat. Looking like you take the job not at all seriously while applying to it seems like a quick way to lose a potential job.

Now all of this is more of a theoretical thought experiment, as the pragmatic side of me has already sorted out the balance of serious-versus-personal qualities to write about. But seeing my personal preference lean so heavily in the direction of a structured, serious or even academic paper versus one that lets me express myself in an open, even goofy way is interesting. Introspective even.

Perhaps all those years of AP classes really did screw me up for the rest of my life, just like I joke about.

This seems like the perfect opportunity to ask an actually interesting question at the end of one of these blog posts. Where do you feel you stand on the spectrum I described here?

Do you prefer if a job (or anything for that matter) asks structured, serious questions of you? Or more open, vague questions?

Let me know somewhere on the internet, I’d love to hear it!

A Quick Question for the Night

Alright so once again I got distracted by hanging out with my friends all afternoon and nearly forgot to write a blog post.

I’m going to try and cobble something together within twenty minutes. See how well that goes.

If I wind up having two posts on August 6th rather than one today and one tomorrow, you’ll know why.

This morning I went to the gym before I spent time with my friends (including special guest Nina, who I found out reads these dumb things sometimes while in Japan if she’s feeling homesick — Shout out to you gurl ❤️). I was going to write something related to that before the hangout began but… Obviously you can see how well that went.

More often than not, I wind up watching YouTube videos while I’m working out. I know for many people Music would fill that void, but I tend to prefer listening to something slightly more unique every time to keep it interesting.

Which is actually the same reason I prefer to listen to podcasts during my commute. Fun fact for you all.

The other day I believe I mentioned watching the Super Beard Bros a lot while exercising at Cal State Fullerton. But recently that story has been a little different in the right periods of time.

See I know I’ve also talked recently about the UCL Pokémon tournament going on between a bunch of YouTubers I watch. They post those battles on Saturday’s.

So when I’m going to the gym over the weekend, that’s been my main form of entertainment while jogging/lifting weights.

But mostly the prior because it’s a bit more dangerous to watch things while operating heavy machinery.

Thinking about all of that led to me wondering about something that I was hoping to pose to the world.

Obviously I was going to put a little more effort into framing the question, but time crunches are a thing.

If any of you out there go the gym, what’s your favorite form of entertainment while doing so?

Do you listen to music?

Watch videos like me?

Podcasts even?

Hell, I saw one person in the gym today reading a newspaper on the treadmill, so that could be an answer.

Or hey, maybe you just prefer to do nothing and just focus on your exercising. That’s also a viable answer.

Let me know somewhere on the Internet, I’d especially love to hear any sort of unique answers people might pose!

Figuring out the Facebooks

Figuring out the Facebooks

It’s not very often that I can get meta about the inner workings of this blog I’ve got regarding subjects beyond the simple milestones like post numbers or followers. But today I wanted to do just that because of a somewhat more interesting development affecting the blog completely beyond my control.

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According to information put out by WordPress, the service, Facebook is restricting the ability of third-party tools to automatically publish material on people’s profile pages.

If I were to read between the obvious lines, this change is more than likely a push to fix some of the concerns regarding the social media site’s use by Russian hackers to messing with the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election. Because whether or not you believe President Trump on the argument that Russia was not meddling at all, or they weren’t meddling on his behalf, or whatever the current story is, clearly some shady stuff was going down.

In fact, some shady stuff is still apparently going down. So it isn’t a concern we’re likely to see go away anytime soon.

Facebook has been trying to, at the very least, put its best face forward (pun only somewhat intended) about aiming to regain the trust of the service’s users. Anyone who spends nearly as much time on YouTube as I do, for example, will probably recognize this ad that suddenly started showing up before just about every video in existence a few weeks back:

The cynic in me rolls his eyes pretty hard seeing this ad, as it’s more than likely Facebook cares more about keeping itself alive as a juggernaut business than it does making sure every Joe Schmo out there can still talk with their friends and family like ‘the good old days.’

But there’s also something to be said about the fact that they’re trying to do something rather than just letting everything burn to the ground while pretending that nothing happened.

Even if that something just amounts to customer-facing BS.

I think that’s about as political as I’m willing to get on the subject right now, however. I haven’t done any of my own significant research or reporting and as a result can’t give you all a definitive ‘Facebook is doing it wrong/right’ verdict.

All I can really say is that based on stuff like the reporting out of Vox I linked to up above and the fact that Facebook is changing its third-party integration (the thing this post was supposed to be about, what a circle!), at least there seems to be an effort to improve. Something I’m hopeful isn’t just BS, as I previously mentioned.

Unfortunately that effort to improve does make my personal life a little more difficult.

See the non-political part of this post is here to address the fact that changing integration also changes the way I need to handle my social media with regards to WordPress stuff.

As must be obvious to most people out there, my social media accounts right now are primarily means of creating a wider viewership for my blog posts. Sure I still go through and post independent things on Facebook and Twitter on occasion, but for the most part I actually much prefer the freedom of being able to write as much as I desire here and spreading that to the world instead of dealing with some restriction like 280 characters.

Now that my WordPress posts will no longer automatically publish to Facebook, I’ve arrived at something of a crossroads.

Is it worth going about the extra step of posting my blog activity to Facebook directly?

Or should I just abandon that social media branch entirely?

The obvious choice for my lazy self is the latter. However, even if I don’t think too much of it in my head, there are some benefits to getting my words out on Facebook specifically.

Those benefits more or less boil down to the posts being seen by people who do, at least occasionally, pay attention that wouldn’t be able to continue doing so via Twitter. Family is the big chunk of that demographic, as I’ll see people like my grandparents liking posts out of the blue on occasion. But there’s also some high school friends I’ve got that occasionally like or comment on my posts. Which is pretty cool, to be completely honest. I like knowing that I’ve caught someone’s fancy with something I might not have expected to.

So with that said, I suppose I should thank you all for making it this far into what is ultimately a non-discussion. I pretty much knew from the get-go that my decision would ultimately be to figure out the best way to separately post these up on Facebook.

I just figured it would be a more interesting post if I went into some of the mindset I had leading up to the decision. After breaking away from writing to hit the gym for an hour, I figure I’ve hit a place in the writing and in my energy level to end it here.

Though that said, I suppose this is going to be my first post separately uploaded to Facebook. Because of that please stand by if it takes some time for me to figure out exactly how I want that to work.

Running and Gaming

I probably could have written up a blog post much earlier today when I wasn’t about to fall asleep while also taking the trash out.

But what can I say. Hollow Knight has enthralled me for easily the last six or so hours straight, so I lost track of time.

I’m not going to say I regret the loss or anything… Because boy is that game wonderful in every kind of way…

But yeah. This probably won’t be super long as a result.

Especially since the whole ‘falling asleep’ part of things stems out of my trip to the gym with mom today, which some of you might remember from this tweet I sent out in the middle of my run.

Mr. Crump is one of my high school gym teachers, if that wasn’t clear enough via context clues.

The trip is finally starting to hit me hard, so I might just pass out as soon as I finish this.

See I haven’t exactly been to the gym in a long time. I went fairly regularly about a year ago at the Cal State Fullerton Rec Center. Back then I made sure my schedule had a few open periods for me to head in there.

Then I found out about my low blood platelet count. Followed shortly after by a stint in the hospital with Meningitis.

Add onto that a busy class/work schedule and my trips to the gym became less and less frequent.

As you might imagine, that’s not exactly the healthiest reality. But it was reality for a bit.

Luckily I’ve finally decided to reverse course and go back to hitting the gym I registered for a membership at a local Planet Fitness where my mom and sister go, that way I have somewhere at home and on campus I could potentially go to.

That way I have no excuse.

Day one went quite well I’d say, even if I may have overdone it based on how wonky I felt for a while after. But hey, with this kind of a early result, who can complain?

Soon enough I’ll build up my stamina and branch out to more than just the treadmill. Then maybe I’ll be less wiped by the end of the day.

I’m just glad that I’ve hopefully found the motivation to go frequently again, that way I can start to feel better.

I’m also glad the Super Beard Bros exist, as they’re my favorite YouTube channel to watch while I run going back to those days at the CSUF gym.

Guess that’s a good possible question for this post that doesn’t need one. What do you all like to do when you’re at the gym? Listen to music? Watch TV? Watch videos? Listen to yourself pant and suffer?

Let me know! Could be something good for me to keep in mind for the future.