The Check-In. May 2018.

Already half way into June, I guess this is better than not doing it at all, probably.

Political Stuff

To be honest, I’ve taken a break this month from political stuff. Not entirely, and not on purpose. My body must have just sensed I needed a break. I have a backlog of stuff I need to take care of now, and a mountain of guilt to work through. There were lots of fits and starts, but I could not get it together to work on things.

There is actually a lot on my mind with the state of things currently, but I think that warrants a separate post because it would really just consume this, and I want to focus on that. There is just so much fucked up stuff going on at the moment in the country. Separating children from their families?!? Cages?!? These are human beings you absolute monsters.

Podcast

We’ve recorded and released a second podcast now. I’ve really enjoyed recording these, and this is like my only outlet to talk about game development. I hope to record another one this weekend. The goal is monthly.

Streaming

Tim and I continue to stream on Twitch and archive on YouTube. If you can, catch it live, or on the Twitch VOD. The bitrate on Twitch is so much better than YouTube. YouTube crunches stuff down so badly.

We have been streaming Sonic Mania recently and those have been some really fun episodes. We even had a sitcom style mix-up in the last recording session. What a pair!

Combo Breaker

I also was lucky enough to attend my first fighting game major this year, Combo Breaker. Firstly, thanks to my friend Taylor for the heads up and for being a travel partner, wouldn’t have done it without his instance. I’ve been watching fighting game streams and tournaments for years, but never anything live. It was cool to see fighting game legends in person. I was just there as a spectator because I’m garbage at fighting games, but even just watching everything was intense. Like sports, it’s different when you are there in person. It felt like a sporting event as well. There are crowds cheering, energy in the room with close match-ups, and even armchair theorists pontificating on what the player should be doing. I hope to go to it, or something like it (EVO!) again. There was even a proposal after SSF2T grand finals!

In the moments of downtime, we met up with a guy who hosts a podcast, No Cartridge, which I hadn’t heard before, but Taylor DM’d him on Twitter when he found out he was going to be there. Super cool guy, and after I heard it, really good podcast as well.

Since we were close-ish, we went to the best arcade, Galloping Ghost. I try to go there a couple times a year, just because it’s so cool. A staggering collection of arcade games, all on free play just $20 for a whole day. Can’t recommend enough if you are ever near Brookfield, IL.

Wedding!

My friends got married! They are fantastic and I love them, and they are perfect.

Running and fitness

I am continuing my journey to kill myself break my previous records.

I started taking Wednesday mornings to run a half before work and managed to do that for three weeks in a row. I’m not going to lie and say it’s easy. It’s a bear. I usually have to get up at 4:30 am and get out the door by 5 to get back, showered, and fed before work. Doing regular half-marathons is not something I’ve ever something I imagines being able to do, so it’s really cool and gratifying to see the time I’ve poured into this having a demonstrable effect.

Outside of the health benefits physically, long distance runs like that do wonders to calm my anxiety. I’ve probably talked about this somewhere in this blog before but running is meditative for me. All I need to focus on in the moment is moving forward. If I’m not listening to podcasts or audiobooks, I can throw on music and just let my mind drift. It helps process whatever I’m dealing with at that time. I know myself, and I know if I’m just sitting around, I will not allow myself the time to work through things; the stresses and responsibilities of whatever I need to do will take precedence. Running is a good forcing function.

I feel like half my blog posts are just, “Everyone, I like running, it’s good.”

But may I pose the following:

I like running, it’s good.

May 2018 Total: 82.2 Miles
May 2017 Total: 54.0
Difference May 2017 to May 2018: +28.2 Miles
Difference 2017 to 2018 to Date: +204.9 Miles

On The Beginning of the End or 2012: a Futurespective

Part of this whole “New Years Resolution” nonsense is to address the following year. To take a look back and see how you did on last years resolutions and what kind of progress has been made. Let’s get that out of the way first, close out 2011.

Get into shape – 50% See me after class

I started this so well. I was getting into the best shape of my life. I felt great, I was losing weight. I started the P90x program and was doing it every day. I was half-way through and for some reason I stopped. I got called for jury duty and that little change was enough to throw me off kilter. Day 45 of 90 exactly. I stopped. Which means…

Run a marathon. – Failed

I need to do this. Stop screwing around and just do it. It will always be a loose end unless I buckle down and do it. Dude, sack up.

Become a digital minimalist. – Success! (Well, succeeding)

This has been a gargantuan undertaking. Who knew 24 years of a primarily analog life would lead to so much work?  I am slowly downsizing the whole of everything. It is amazingly boring and time consuming. That being said, there is lights that are being seen at the end of the tunnel. Every little thing I get rid of takes one more rock off my chest. It’s an amazing feeling.

Be more adult. – Rousing Success

This was the big one for me. This is the one I really wanted to focus in on and I think I have done a pretty great job. It is something that, by my interaction at least, is being skipped over for most people. For most of us, as I mentioned in the post right before this one, we are incredibly lucky to live like we do, sure we are human and experience setbacks, but that doesn’t mean we need to complain about every one. That is adolescent. Something my peers should be exiting. Something I want to be done with. That might mean sucking it up and doing something that is painful or unpleasant, but we are nothing if not adaptable. This year I have made a conscious effort to do what needs to be done with little to no complaints because it was was needed to be done (That kind of makes me sound like a hit man, but I promise, I am not a hit man). To be perfectly honest, it hasn’t been easy. It was against my nature. It took stretching and growth, but it worked. An unintended, but welcomed side-effect of this has been that when everyone sucks it up and does what needs to be done, there is no drama (well, little drama). It’s great to see things go so smoothly.

Adapting that “do what needs to be done” mentality, I managed to pull the best grades since Summer 2007: A, A, A+, C (Seriously guys, that C is in ECE 311: Electromagnetics and I am more proud of that C than any of the others) Also, Yes, Mary that is me bragging. If there is one thing I know about Mary it is that she likes to say I always brag (I do not).

This has been the key to my recent successes. If you want to achieve a dream or goal it takes work and most of it consists of not things that are not constantly fun. In closing, this one mental change has transformed my life more than any other thing I have done in recent memory.

OK, on to 2012

Continue Being an Adult

Ok, good job 2011 me, but you are not in the clear. Growth is one thing, but maintaining that growth is something new all together. Regression is an easy thing, and I don’t want to regress. For the first time in a long time I feel my life is back in the right direction and reverting back to my formal bad habits and attitudes would be a monumental failure. This is the prime objective and the one on which everything hinges.

Get Healthy

This one is a comment on last years, but changed in a real way. Getting fit is one thing, but getting healthy is a whole other battle. I want to get in shape. I want to start and finish P90x and I want to continue to work on my running. This NEEDS to be the year in which I run that marathon. I am not getting any younger and there is no time like the present. The other side to this is diet. That is something I never took extremely serious, but it plays an as important, if not more important role in this. These all make up to a healthier me. I actually enjoy living and I want to do it as much as I can. I can’t control what happens to me externally, but I sure can keep the machine in top working order.

To ensure my success in this I am going to be keeping metrics on all the important things and posting them on here. Caloric intake, weight, exercise, dates, times, all of this and more will be updated weekly and a monthly wrap-up post detailing my thoughts and feelings. This will be aggregated somewhere on the blog, and available at large and all those details will be posted soon.

Read More Books

I read. I read a lot actually. The thing is that I don’t read books. I read articles, news, blogs, but not books. The one thing, more than anything else, that can improve your writing beyond actually writing is reading. Seeing different styles and words can help you learn and develop your own sort of style (Do you guys ever notice I use a lot of parenthetical asides when I write? This is part of the style I have created and I got it from reading). Since I have school, I want to make a realistic goal for this. 12 books, 12 months, 1 a month. That is completely manageable. Hopefully this will make me more smarter.

Finish Condensing My Life (Digital Minimalism cont.)

This is by far the most tedious but necessary thing on the list. I have done a pretty good job of becoming unattached to (most) material possessions, but I need to finish the job. I am giving myself a due date.  End of the year I better be finished minimizing. I should be a lean, streamlines, model of human existence. The reason for this is that I graduate in the Fall of 2013. I start senior design in Spring 2013. That will most likely take up all my time. What little free time I have I want to use to secure a job and get a place to live. I can’t be messing around with minimizing stuff. I want to “hit the ground running” as they say. I want to be move-out ready when I get that diploma.

More Music

I kind of started this back a couple months ago, but I need more new music. I used to be on the cusp of new, great music, but it dropped off. This is unacceptable. I love music and need to keep listening to new stuff. My goal is that every month I have at least 10 new albums (doesn’t have to be just released, just stuff I haven’t heard). I hope to share those with you guys, too. On here and via Spotify. I love Spotify. Go get Spotify.

Share More and Better

This blog is now 9 years old. (Wow, seriously 9 years old!) There has been some major changes to the site over the years. Names, and URLs. (So happy I own killertofu.com) With that I haven’t always had the easiest way to proliferate or interact with everyone about content. That is changing with Facebook and Twitter integration as well as the addition of Disqus as the comment manager. Disqus lets me respond to people and let other people respond to other people much easier and let’s you also use your Twitter, Facebook, or Google logins. Streamlined! I like writing and opening up dialogue, but speaking in a room by myself is never ideal. I want you guys, yeah you reading this right now, to join the discussion. I am genuinely interested in what you have to say.

I also want to share more with you guys, more than these long posts. I want to share stuff I watch, read, and maybe some quick photos. I can do that on Twitter now, but it is fleeting. It get buried in the annals of Twitter within a day. I could start a Tumblr, but I pretty much hate Tumblr and don’t have as much control over a Tumblr as I do my own site. So, here is what I’m going to do. I am going to start 2 “sub-sites” maybe they will change over time, but I am going to make something called KT Mini which is little photos and videos I make that don’t warrant a full post. This will all be from my life and not from sharing other internet related stuff. The second is KT Share, which is my Tumblr-esque site. It will have all stuff around the web I think you guys would enjoy or stuff I really enjoyed. These will remain semi-independent and not appear on the front page or within the blog itself. I need to still get this in order, but hopefully this will let me share more with you guys.

 

That’s all I really have for 2012. I am not winning any point for originality, but then again this isn’t about originality. It’s about making my life better and that is something I can whole-heatedly embrace. Look for updates to this site, where KT get’s a little better.
Since Disqus is live right now, leave me some comments. What do you guys think of my goals? What are your goals? Leave ’em!

Addendum

Get a Manicure

This might seem slightly strange, but this has an underlying point. I have had this terrible habit that I haven’t been able to kick: biting my nails. I have tried so many times, that I lost count. I am currently in the middle of the longest run of not biting my nails. I want to end this and not have hands that look like they have just seen war. The triumph for this would be to be actually able to get a manicure. A little effeminate, sure, but it is something I have never been able to do because of my lack of nail length. I want to be a pretty man.

Finish My Damn Short Story

I have had this idea kicking around for a short story for years now. I need to put the pen to the page and finish this. It keeps coming up in my head which means that until I close this loop it will always haunt me. I don’t do nearly enough fiction writing anyway, so it’s something to grow myself as a writer as well. All I need is a good weekend to sit down and bang it out. It needs some research to it, too, despite its fictional nature. Anyway, I will post it here when I do finish it for your ridicule.

Practice Japanese, You Know, if There is Time

This is not so much a resolution, but something I need to do, but it is not the top priority. So, if I find myself with a free moment and everything else is done (yeah right, dude) I want to continue practicing Japanese. I have forgotten so much of it. *sigh*