Archive for December, 2007

Merry Moving

Rockband This weekend we moved Miles to Sioux Falls to our first apartment. It’s very nice, and I’m excited to move there myself! Thanks to Val, Brenna, and Bob for helping out. We couldn’t have done it without you.

But, moving is not enjoyable, even with help. And we technically get to do it twice. In a month. At least we weren’t moving to a new town, preparing for a wedding, graduating, starting new jobs, and doing it all in the winter. Am I right?  I’ll be bringing carloads of my things throughout January and we’ll move me completely sometime after the wedding. I’ll need to find a graphic design job soon as well…but in the last month or so, there really have not been any openings in the Sioux Falls area. Wish me luck!

Noteworthy enjoyables about the apartment: washer and dryer in the unit, dishwasher, two beds, two baths, large closets, comfy carpets, large rooms. Still, there are things I’d like to change, but who lives in a perfect world?

My unpacking jobs this weekend: organizing/alphabetizing DVD collection, arranging furniture, dish washing, unloading kitchen stuff, laundry, and hanging art and photos.

Anyway, today marks the last year for being a “Miss” and I look forward to the next couple of weeks of preparing, freaking, and looking forward to the big day!

Happy New Year!

Summer Movie Review

I started this post in August (the last time we saw a movie in theaters, except for Dan in Real Life last weekend. Must see.) The furthest I got was naming the movies I’m pretty sure I saw throughout the summer. It came to either deleting it, or writing it.

Spiderman 3
I remember not being disappointed by it really. But, to be honest, all I remember is what I saw in trailers…And when I try to remember, some of Superman Returns leaks into my memories. And now that I write this, when did X-Men 3 come out? Because I’ve seen it, but don’t remember when. And if it was this summer, then it should be on this list.

Ratatouille
Miles and I had been looking forward to this movie since we saw a teaser in the summer of 06. Pixar has the ability to really wow me with storyline, animation, and creativity (unlike some other animation companies, I care not to mention in case some day they offer me a job). I was really wanting this movie to be my next “favorite movie”. It’s not. Don’t get me wrong, the animation and modeling and textures were super-fricken-fantastic. I mean, the water animation in the sewers, the hair on the rats…incredible. Storyline? Pretty decent and funny. Creativity? Pretty not. The thing I look forward to in Pixar animations most is the world the animators create. That’s what makes animation so great…you can create a world that doesn’t currently exist and be created by film. I mean, Monsters, Inc. had an entire monster world that was very unique. Cars was a unique way of making vehicles into characters and their interesting interactions with the world. The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, Toy Story, all had unqiue worlds within believeable worlds. Superheros, a new take on the social interactions between sea animals, and how we all imagined, as kids, our toys behaved when we weren’t looking. But the rat world wasn’t creative…nearly non-existent. And that, to me, was disappointing. What was the point of using animation for the picture if you aren’t going to create a sewer world that is different from how we already imagine it?

The Simpsons
Mostly saw it because Miles wanted to. It had been a long time since seeing an episode of The Simpsons. And this movie was disappointing. I just felt like I had paid $8.25 for a TV episode. Lame. And Spiderpig isn’t funny, except for the fact that Spiderman 3 had just been released.

Pirates of the Caribbean 3: At World’s End
I enjoyed the movie. However, I feel that I would have appreciated it more if there was more time for anticipation to build. The long wait between 1 and 2 made the sequel that much better. I had missed Jack’s drunkenness and the new characters were disgusting as well as intriguing (and not just because they were mostly 3D). But this movie seemed to be a continuation of the 2nd movie. No new characters, no new plot for the most part, and I wasn’t missing Jack. I mean, a month after the sequel came out I heard that production had started for the 3rd one and it should be out the following summer. No anticipation. If this movie had come out in 2008, I think I (and most people) would have been more impressed and satisfied.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Hard for me to comment on, since I haven’t read the book. But I liked it. I’m currently on page 106, and have been since October, of this book. I have a little less motivation to read the books when I already know what happens. I mean…I love Sirius and all…but how can you get attached to someone when you know he dies? (That was a spoiler, and if you’re mad, you should have already seen the movie or read the book and you’re not a true fan. Neither am I.) Anyway, good movie, sad ending, can’t wait for the next one but hope to have that book read before I see it.

Maybe I should have chosen to delete the post…

The Real Speech

OK, well, the previous post wasn’t the speech I gave on Sunday. Neither was Miles’s post.

from the podium If you go here, you can watch a video of the ceremony (I think you need Windows Media Player to view). Fast forward to 49:14 (it might need to load for a second or two) and it’s about the time where I’m being introduced. My speech is like 4 minutes long, so don’t worry about wasting your time. Unless you absolutely could care less. In that case, why are you reading my blog in the first place? Everything went well, no big flub ups, and I even got a sweet picture out of the deal! Not many people would have a shot similar to this one.  I enjoy seeing my professors giving cheesy smiles (well, most of them anyway…) but wish I could have gotten the whole front row. I know at least one reader was cut out of the picture. Otherwise, Miles, Paula, and my dad taped it. It might be easier to wait to watch one of those (I’m sure Miles’s will end up online) for all you who don’t want to go through the work of clicking on the link.

Thanks to everyone who came: Miles, Mom, Dad, Marissa, Val, Paula, Grandma and Grandpa.  And everyone who said they were going to, but backed out: Tony.

The Graduation Speech

If you absolutely can’t wait, here is the speech for my graduation.  Enjoy!
Fellow graduates, esteemed faculty, loving family and friends, and those appreciated others who have come to see us off: I am immeasurably proud to be addressing the 489th graduating class of Dakota State University.
As I look out over this crowd, I am reminded of a joke.  It’s a fairly mediocre “Yo’ Mama” joke that goes, “Yo’ mama is so poor she couldn’t pay attention.”  And before you rush the stage to defend your mother’s honor, let me point out that there is at least one video camera recording evidence that can be used against you in a court of law.
The joke is a simple pun, not some grand, witty correlation between wealth and attention span, as some would imagine.  The word, “attention”, is defined by The Internet in at least six different ways, one of which is approximately, “Consideration or courtesy.”  It comes from the Middle English, which in turn came from the Latin from the past participle of the word attendere, which means to heed.
“But, Holli,” you say.  “You didn’t major in grammar, so why are you deliberately boring us with definitions?”  Touché, restless crowd.  “Attention” is special.  We talk about it like we can actually hold it, but you can’t purchase a bag of “attention” in the TC, no matter how much of your meal plan is left over.
We’ve all heard our parents or, worse, professors admonish us to “pay attention”.  An appropriate response is not “What am I?  Made of money?”  It gets a chuckle, like, five percent of the time.
However, if that same person is feeling a little less miserly, they might simply ask, “Can I have your attention?” like we have a plate full of leftovers at Christmas dinner.  Or they could possibly say, “Please, give me your attention,” after which they gaze at us, the givers, with a look of expectancy, as if we should get out our “attention purses” and give out “attention bucks”.
What makes attention so special?  Well, for one thing, I gave this speech to my kitchen last night, and I wasn’t nearly as nervous as I am now.  It’s not because this room is eleven hundred times the size of my kitchen, it’s because, suddenly, a lot of people are paying attention.  The “who” of “attention” matters greatly.  If Johnny Depp was helping me give this speech, I wouldn’t need that “Yo’ Mama” joke to get your attention.
“Attention” is the currency of “respect”, but it comes in positive and negative.
Picture a lion tamer with a whip and a chair, as the stereotype goes.  As he cracks the whip, the lions around him roar with hunger, eager to attack but fearful of his technique.  Now picture those same lions, that same tamer, but the lions are lounging in the sun, yawning, tails flicking carelessly.  A lion tamer is worthless if the lions don’t give a damn.
As graduates, we’ll be given special attention today: on this very stage moments from now, after the ceremony with our friends and family, and in every job interview for the rest of our lives.  Being a college graduate is a privilege that carries with it responsibility.  Whether we realize it or not, we will forever represent Dakota State University in our actions and our words from this day forward.  We are now a product of the attention that we have given and received, paid out and invested, and hopefully that will show through as we march off this campus to our new futures.
Insulting “yo’ mama” is not have been the most refined way of getting someone’s attention, but it usually works.  If you recall, however, I didn’t open with the “Yo’ Mama” joke.  If anyone can tell me what graduating class I said we were, then I’ll give you a prize.  Namely, my attention.
Thank you.

Shake it

So our final project for 3D was animating the characters we modeled earlier this semester. I finished early. Not because it was easy, but because I spent a lot of time in there last week at night. People are mad because I’m done because they think it came easy to me and I ran into no problems and theirs is running into all these problems. Well, I ran into the same problems, it’s just I went in two weeks before finals week to work on it, rather than the week before finals week (when everyone else is in the lab). Just because they didn’t see me working several hours on it, doesn’t mean I didn’t. Sorry for the venting. I’m just frustrated with some classmates. My animation isn’t perfect, but with the constraints of the semester, and of the way I created the character, it’s decent.

I used to upload these with Google Video, but it doesn’t really exist anymore. I’m a part of an animation network with MyToons and so I’m trying their embedded player to share the animation with you. I hope it’s a good experience. Turn your sound on.