Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Another totally random post....

Something is not right in Dallas. I feel myself being irreversibly sucked into an actual career. It took a while to happen (as I am slightly older than 18 now), but I have recently found myself actually thinking about work when I am home. This is discomforting and makes me wish that I had tried harder to realize my childhood dream of being the next Rhinestone Cowboy! I mean, I need money (it buys my gourmet groceries) but I never thought that I would be consumed by work. Work is something you do so that you are able to truly live, right? When work starts encroaching on said living you've got a problem, right? Of course, I still have it better than many of my friends (okay, I only have two - but still); who frequently work 60 hour weeks. Its a bad week when I have to work 45! But still, I'm worried about the worrying. I'm worried about getting ahead. I'm worried about impressing others. I'm worried about staying ahead of others.

I just finished watching the latest installment of the Up Series, 42 Up. Basically, in two weeks time I was able to watch these individuals grow from 7 year old cartoon characters to 42 year old geezers. Its fascinating, but also inspiring and disturbing. You see some accomplishing something new and exciting in every 7 year installment. And others who seem to fall apart right before your eyes. I find that I want to be part of the former group. But hadn't I hoped to accomplish more than just being a well-paid businessman? Wasn't I supposed to write a screenplay? Or open a restaurant? Or travel the world? There's a fine line between living, and making a living. Unless you're independantly wealthy you have to do one in order to accomplish the other. But too much career, and the living gets squeezed out of life. Am I waxing too eloquent? Sure. But I honestly do worry that I will be just another treadmill participant.

Yep, my career is going just fine. I may need to quit soon.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Give me a child until he is 7....

Well, I have just finished watching "21 Up", the third installment in the Up Series - a collection of documentaries on British school children. The series revisits them every seven years and talks to them about their dreams, ambition, views on life, etc. It has so far been very, very interesting. Its amazing to see how some of the kids have changed a great deal - both for the better and the worse.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

New frontiers....

I'm thinking this thing will work better as just a sort of journal for moi. I seem to be all over the map on where I would like to see the "theme" go; plus, I don't really even update often enough to maintain a theme. So, instead, I've decided to just keep a record of things that interest me - and my interactions with those things. For instance, I've decided to get serious about learning French. Yep, I said it - I'm going to learn French. I love languages (and at least the idea of learning them), but seem to have trouble landing on one long enough to actually learn it. (I know some Japanese so shouldn't I learn that; but, I live in Texas so shouldn't I be learning Spanish; but, my heart's with French, so....) Anyway, since motivation is the biggest factor in language learning success I've decided to do French. And after that I can pursue others. (Ideally, I'd like to know 4 languages minimum.)

So, on to my French learning escapades. I'm using a multi-tiered approach. (Mainly, because I have all these different resources and am trying to find a way to not waste any of them.) My program is as follows: Each day on my commute to work I listen to Pimsleur French I.
I purchased this a few years ago; I want to finish level 1, but won't be buying the subsequent levels. (I think its too expensive for the slow pace. Its mainly good for pronunciation practice, but that's not really my weak spot.) Then, while I'm at work I listen to a French TV station on the internet. This channel is sort of like CSPAN I think. Its good because its just nonstop talking - and the purpose is to become familiar with the pattern and sounds of the language. On my commute back home I listen to the same Pimsleur lesson to reinforce what I learned. Then, upon arriving home I go through one lesson of French In Action, the greatest French study program available. There are 52 lessons. When I finish them then I will start over again, because its designed in such a way that you aren't expected to pick everything up the first go around. After that I go through a lesson of Conversational French in 20 Lessons. An old, but good, grammar book. After I finish the Pimsleur course I will be working through Assimil French (listening to it during the commute and working through the lessons in addition to FIA and the grammar book.) That's a rough overview of the program. I may include more details in later posts.

I'm thinking of taking a trip to France to visit a friend for New Years, or at the very latest next Spring. So my goal is to be able to hold conversations (basic) in French by that time. I'm certain this is possible for the Spring trip.

My brother likes soup.