No, I Did Not Drop The Ball Last Week!

25 01 2017

football

Last week, the more frequent and eagle-eyed readers of my blog would have spotted that I did not post anything. Just to reassure you, no I did not drop the ball; it was sort of intended.

a-monster-calls (Focus Features - 2016)

Since 2011, I have been posting blog posts on this blog every week. I have been blogging in total for over 7 years now, but it was not until 2011 that I started posting more frequently, and have been doing so ever since. So why last week’s interruption, well there is sort of 2 reasons behind that. One is because I was hoping to post my film review of A Monster Calls, but after getting ill, and running dry of the emotions that the film created, I got a bit behind. The other though is that I have decided to scale back a bit when it comes to my blogging. Here’s why:

Steamboy (Sunrise - 2004)

In August 2016, I finally got a job, a job I am still doing to this day and am really enjoying; however when I first got it I was unsure as to if I would still be able to keep blogging frequently, so what I did was write a bunch of posts to post over a period of time instead of there and then. This idea worked, up until I started doing it for the rest of the year. I had written posts weeks, if not over a month ahead of when they were due to be posted. This took some of the fun out of blog posting, because when I have written a post, there is a great deal of excitement and energy about it, which makes you excited to see it simply get posted; if that is done weeks ahead, when it is finally posted the excitement has gone and so has the energy. Posting weeks ahead is only useful if you have a schedule to keep or have plans for a string of posts and need the extra time. For me it really took the fun out of it and as such I began to emotionally struggle with the blog, well thanks to both that and one other reason: Views.

views

When I started this blog, views were never really on my mind, as all I wanted to do was just write. When I discovered the views feature, it really started to grip me and I would look at it to see what was enjoyed, what wasn’t, and within a few years it pretty much took my main focus as I logged into WordPress every day. The views feature when you’re starting out can actually be quite fun, because when it’s the case that a lot of people are viewing your blog, that gives you a good boost of energy, but when they start to dwindle, that in return can get you down. Since 2011, I have actually kept a spreadsheet of my blog views on my computer, the main purpose being is that when I first started, WordPress used to provide views in a fun line graph, but this changed to a bar chart on the system, and as I quite liked the line graph, I decided to keep the spreadsheet to create the line graphs.

Godzilla 2014 (Legendary Pictures - 2014)

Come 2013 however, and the success I had achieved in 2012 quickly evaporated, and my blog views each month went from 3000-4000 views, to just over 1000. May 2014 saw a brief increase to over 2000 views mostly thanks to a certain film that was released that month, but since then views have been going down slowly. For the last 4 months of 2016, I received no higher than just over 900 views. I should just be happy that people are still looking at my blog from time to time, but when the views are sharp in your face when you turn on and go into the dashboard, and you see this continuing drop, it just gets you down, and with me losing the excited energy about the posting of posts, things really started to look grim. Then I had an idea, which upon considering it, made me very positive.

views-2

The issue; was that firstly the viewing figures were getting me down. So to combat this, I am no longer going to keep my own records, plus have managed to move the views window out of the way so it’s not completely in my face when I log on. I still have it to one side to look at every now and then, but now when I log in to WordPress I don’t get down when the views are down, because I don’t know if they are or not. Secondly, putting up posts every week did sort of begin to affect the kind of posts that I put up each week. This blog does not make money for me in anyway, it’s meant to be fun for me as well as a possible platform for my thoughts and interests, so why should I keep up a post each week? Posting each week does help me to keep it going and the frequency does help. The one thing I don’t want to do is give up, because in my current emotional state I may never get back into it if I did, so I decided to reduce the frequency to a post every 2 weeks. This keeps the frequency going, but does not put me in such a bad position. I can work on my posts more and have a little more freedom with less stricter personal deadlines, but also with more time to think and plan, I can potentially do more posts like the ones I really want to do. This does not stop me posting more frequently if I wanted to, but does not mean I have to rush a post out if I am late. It just gives me some options. Since deciding to go down this path, I have actually begun to feel a lot more positive and excited again about blogging and posting. While it’s in the early stages, I am beginning to feel pretty good about it. The rules I have put in place for myself are:

  • Post every couple of weeks at least.
  • Reduce number of film reviews a year too.

Film reviews have been a big part of this blog since the release of Inception, with me persisting to try and release one a month or at least 12 a year if I miss any. Doing big film reviews though do take up some time, and to allow myself as much freedom as I can, I am reducing my own required number down to six. If I am posting for half the year, I will do the same for film reviews too, but still continue to do them, just reducing the required amount in a year. So while it used to be at least 12, it is now 6. I am not intending to retire from blogging any time soon, I just want it to be fun again but also not tiring; so with this plan in place I am still hoping and planning to do the same as I always have done, just less frequently, and who knows, maybe this will turn out to be better than before, but right now that is not the important thing for me, the important thing is to be having fun again.

inception (Legendary Pictures - 2010)

GENEPOOL





Pleasant Dreams And The World Of Nightmares: A Short History In Honour Of What Was Once My Bed

28 01 2015

 

My Bed 1

Last week, when getting into bed, it finally gave way, and broke. While other members in my family have been through many beds, mine just kept on going and going and for 20 years (yes…..20). In honour of such a well-made, well-built piece of furniture, I present to you, The Story of My Bed (I doubt this will be a long post).

Cot

When I was young; I, like many babies, slept in a cot. It was white one. Then I remember having a trip out to a furniture shop and then a few weeks later a new double-decker bed was in my room, and one night, I no longer slept in a cot. While my sadness for that passing was big, I soon got used to my new bed. The idea for the purchasing of the bed I think was for my brother to also sleep in it when his room was being used as a guest room. So he would sleep in it. Some of the activities and games I got up to during my youth in that bed included using it as a vantage point to shoot my bow and arrow at cardboard people used at a church holiday bible club, watching people trying to represent events from World’s Strongest Man, playing football on the top bit, pretending it was a bus using a small arcade games machine (I think from a car boot sale) which involved driving down a road and running over crabs, probably pretending it was a train at some point, and much, much more. I used to sleep on the top bunk a lot, but eventually went down to the bottom one. One night I remember the ladder bit came off and being worried that some structural rigidity had been lost. Eventually though, in 2006, the bottom part broke. I can’t remember how, it just did, and my dad and brother helped me get it sorted, by lifting off the top bunk, removing the bottom one and putting the top one down. So from then on, that’s what my bed has been like.

 

Bunk Bed

It wasn’t exactly a conventional bed, due to the barriers on the side, getting into the bed each night was like doing the High Jump (I wonder if I should apply for the Olympics; I have the experience?) and to begin with I wondered for a few years if the barriers could be removed, but as I got used to it, I just forgot about it. The story of my bed just continued on and on for many years, but I knew it’s time would come. A few weeks ago I started to hear creaks as I got into bed, this went on for a week or so and I looked underneath. There was some damage, but the one that stood out most was a rib that broke several years ago (when I was trying to practice a leg drop; back when I wanted to be a Professional Wrestler). But I thought nothing of it. Then, last week, as I did what was to be my last daily high jump routine (I didn’t actually jump, getting into the bed naturally still involved getting my leg over the barrier then twisting my back in what may one day be known as the Arthur Twist), settled into bed and immediately, it collapsed. I got out, saw the damage. A beam had broken off. The only thing preventing me from hitting the floor was all the boxes underneath it. My brother got the mattress out for me; put it on the floor so I could still sleep. That is where I am now, sleeping on the floor in my room until a replacement bed comes. If it wasn’t for a sore throat and a cold, I may have gone out by time of writing this (Monday) to get a new one.

My Bed 2

While the future of my next bed remains uncertain, My old bed supported my sleeping weight for 20 years as I slowly got heavier and heavier. It has been a fun ride stationary one at that, when it wasn’t an imaginary train or bus) filled with 2 decades of sweet dreams, nightmares and my own version of the Fosbury Flop. Sweet Dreams my old bed, you’ve earned it.

My Bed 3

GENEPOOL (While that bunk bed picture is not my original bunk bed, it does look a lot like it).





Sam’s Rant – London 2012 Olympics

27 07 2012

Usually when one of the big sporting events happen (which is every 2 years) I am usually annoyed due to the fact that everyone won’t stop talking about them, find someway of saying that because it is the anniversary of something it is a sign of them winning and also because TV for the next 2 weeks (4-6 weeks in case of the world cup and 5 million years in the case of cricket) will all be rubbish. But this year it is even more annoying, why, because I live in the UK. Now that is not a bad thing, there are many things I love about my country but sport is not one of them, at least it is not the world cup, because that would be worse. At least the UK is not holding the world cup for the next 14 years at minimum.

I have been saying it for a long time that the London Olympics will be rubbish. Every time there is the olympics (well at least at the 2008 olympics) there is something that will lower the mood. In 2008 it was about Tibet, this year it is the new olympic sport of Missile Firing off Tower Blocks. Yes the London olympics has a new sport, well not really. Come to think about it when those missile trucks were brought into the capital I am surprised they managed to get to their destinations because the roads in the UK are all jammed up even when there are not missile trucks on the roads so how did they even manage to get to their destination is amazing, I wonder if they had to pay the congestion charge, those things are also quite slow so they must have had to pay it several times, one for each day. As long as Giant Monsters attack you do not need those missile emplacements. If Monsters do attack people will not have a problem with those missile sites, but more than likely the missiles will just help the monsters. It is more than likely that this will not happen but London has been attacked by Monsters at least 3 times (I know this because I have been making a Database on the subject) and seeing as people will be watching sport, nobody will be watching Lost Worlds, the London Underground and of course the Sea (and the Thames last year if I get a Time Machine and use my extensive Movie Knowledge to create something that will bring the whole nation together and also may prevent the London Riots).

Other than that you have the controversy (and that one about brands) over G4S. I thought it might be best just to employ the police, oh wait there are none because the government fired them all, well ok, not exactly. The only thing I really know about G4S except for them being a security company and also deliver money to banks in those transit vans is they check your train tickets when you are travelling from Preston to anywhere from platform 1 and 2. I think that may be because all the other platform use Virgin and TransPennine Express while Platform’s 1 and 2 use the always slow Northern Rail (and maybe Grand Central in the future if they decide to and Arriva lets them do it as well as do the correct thing of letting them do what they want to do and just sign checks without asking questions). Well it looks like the army has been brought in, so at least we will be prepared in the event of a Monster Attack.

One issue that I have with the olympics is something that happened 1 year ago. At a 1 year to go event in London near the clock (which sadly did not go wrong which would have been really funny). The theme they were using for the event was London Calling by The Clash, which is a Fantastic Song and a perfect choice, but the version they were using was some DJ version, which was rubbish and should be a crime. DJ and Rap music takes well known, well-loved music to do a cover of and makes them rubbish, that’s a fact, so why did london do this? Well there has been No answer (because as far as I can tell, I am the only person who has pointed this out). Three of the original 4 members (classic members) are still alive, so why were these people not asked to do the song, I mean it would not cost that much to get them back together, why did London have to hire some really rubbish DJ. In terms of other music I heard that Elbow was hired, I am not a fan (except for the song Grounds for Divorce which is fantastic, the tune has nice rock tune) but I do not disagree with the idea, they are not a bad choice, but why couldn’t we have a more successful, well known band to do it like Iron Maiden, The Rolling Stones, Motorhead, The Who, Saxon, Madness, The ProdigyLed Zeppelin or Black Sabbath. These bands have been extremely successful and are well known to be from the UK. Only one of these were chosen to perform at the Queens Jubilee (which is a shame because all the other bands (except Tom Jones) were all not as good as the bands I have just mentioned). They could at least do some Deep Purple, Jon Lord sadly passed away a couple of weeks ago, it would be a fitting tribute.  Were These bands even asked to do the music for the Olympics? Because if they weren’t, that just seems rude. Why can’t we just have Hellion Electric Eye by Judas Priest, they are retiring, it would have been a nice send off for them (or even Breaking The Law because that would really fit for a big UK city and might explain what a Chav is for all the other countries in the world).

The mascots for London are all wrong too, The Chinese ones had a sort of Manga/Anime look (ok wrong country) but it sort of fit. London’s mascots should represent our country, so one should be a chav and the other be a drug dealer, it makes sense. They are supposed to represent (in some obviously unseen way) the industrial revolution but they look more like webcams (which would fit nicely with Hellion Electric Eye by Judas Priest) and so far they have only been shown on McDonalds Adverts and Posters which in a way is very British (even though McDonalds is American).

The Olympic torch is quite nice, particularly when it came through Lancaster (I can’t remember if it was mentioned on the news but I was in Ulverston that evening have a fun time which could explain me not seeing any news on it but seeing as everywhere else had news about it leaving out Lancaster would be extremely unfair). Even though my photos could have been better but they were sort of ruined by people with Umbrellas leaning over the railings (a red umbrella in particular). The whole event was not much really, just a person with a flaming stick. Also at the time I had a scene from a Godzilla film in my head. In a way it is surprising that the torch did not go out, it was pouring with rain. Also, why did Will.I.Am, carry the torch? He is American not British.

One of the biggest issues I have is with TV. It is a well known fact that when a big sporting event is on it means that for the period that it is on, Normal TV is Rubbish, that is TV for normal people who don’t really care. Most of the news is about the event of course and there are endless shows about the event as if we don’t know that the event was on. But it is not just during the event. Usually the shows would finish quite quickly afterwards but they start a few weeks before hand, but if you are the host nation, they start 3 months before hand which is even more annoying. I feel sorry for all host nations of sporting event’s, well at least the normal people. Well at least it is not the World Cup, because once again that would be worse. It is not the just the TV Shows (I still need to watch the thing on the Big Red Tower which looks quite nice), it’s the adverts too. The biggest criminal in Olympic Advertising is EDF, for the past few years their adverts have involved Green Energy advertisement with bad songs, the one from Mud particularly. The recent ones with the little thing have been an improvement but our TV Screens have already been scarred. Well when the whole thing is over the bad adverts will go, at least after two weeks because anymore than that and no one will be able to take them seriously for a long while (except for those BT adverts because they have been a joke since Kris Marshall was first spotted on them).  To be honest Tonight is the opening ceremony and I am more excited about Mondays episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer on SyFy, I have recently become a fan of the show, so much so in fact that I want to do a whole series of posts about the show.

More than likely I will not watch much, I might watch some sports here and there but really it is not for me. I did like what The Now Show said about the olympics with the idea of some sports being replaced like The Triathlon standard of Running, Swimming and Cycling with Taxi, Bus and Minicab. I might watch the diving because it is sort of interesting and I may keep my eye open for the wrestling just in case Kurt Angle does show up.

I do think it is far too overdue for Video Games to have a place in the Olympics (or even their own olympics, you could call it the Cyber Olympics, just a suggestion that makes perfect sense). It would interest more young people. The CGS showed that the idea of competitive Gaming works and so why not bring it back, that format would work for the olympics, and it had a fantastic theme too. Who knows maybe I could win a Gold medal, Ok it is more than likely I won’t but at least I can try out for the UK team. Also the UK could do really well at it because the last time the CGS happened the UK won it with the Birmingham Salvo so technically the UK is the current World Champions at Video Games and don’t forget that Video Games are the national sport of South Korea. This is the start of a Revolution, at least bring back the CGS and take it from there. So why not do it Olympic Comitee People, you know it makes sense (it appears Intel are doing something, so why not go and have a chat with them).

You may be thinking that all things will be better when it is all over and done with, no it won’t for 2 reasons. The UK likes to complain when it does not win and will try to find ways of getting back at people by arguing why they did not win. OK, this does not just apply to the UK, it’s just we have the Gold medal at it. We also like to blame our own sportsman and ruin their careers. A prime example of this is the bloke who dropped the ball at the World Cup. The UK who is Football Mad (in some ways it is almost a medical condition) did not stop complaining at this and more than likely complained at it in the form of saying that they are better than him. It is important to point out that the goalie is on the team for a reason, because he is good while people from the pub are more than likely not. If he makes a mistake, no problem, except for some reason there is. The problem with Football Madness is that because it takes over the human brain all you can think of is anger when something like this happens because a British Person thinks it is the end of the world when their team loses a football match, which is quite sad, (not losing at football, that is just something that will happen from time to time). There are other times when controversy will happen for other reasons, like that woman (Caster Semenya) a couple of years ago who was told that she may have to take a sex test because she won a medal. The other problem with the olympics is that either way you look at it, it will be rubbish, not just Before and During but After too, why? Because once again the UK is Football Mad. Yes the Stadium will be turned into a football stadium and for a big club (which may spark controversy because apparently there is a small club in the area whose name I have forgotten but sounds oriental). For the first time the UK has a place where athletes can train at an olympic level in one place without travelling all over the country but once again Football takes centre stage. It’s bad enough that Battersea Power Station may get turned into a football stadium, it (and the olympic stadium) would make a great arena for all events, but that will probably not happen (I wonder if the chimneys will get used as missile sites). Why is football even in the olympics when it gets its own thing every 4 years?

Well the Opening ceremony is about to begin which has been orchestrated by the man who made the rather dull Slumdog Millionaire, Danny Boyle. Sadly, it probably won’t be the idea that Top Gear came up with which would look a whole lot better but hopefully it won’t be a massive waste of time. What would be good is if the plot from 127 Hours is repeated and the Torch Bearer cuts his arm off as carries it, just before he lights the main torch. I hope the countdown is like the one in the trailer for The Hunger Games, big booming voice, 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 (Now there’s an idea for an Olympic Sport).

Well anyway, Enjoy the Olympics, It may be fun to watch and don’t waste it, it could be more than 20 years until the next time the UK holds it. It will be nice to walk around the park (once it is all finished, less crowds). For me, I am just happy it is finally here and it will all (mainly) be finished in 2 weeks, FANTASTIC. Let The Games Begin.

GENEPOOL (did anyone get my pun earlier?)





Sam’s Rant – Football

20 07 2011

World Cup Trophy (Wikipedia)

I do not like Football. Football just seems a waste of time for me to watch. What is the whole point in watching a bunch of people kicking a ball around a pitch. Also why do the fans take it so seriously, it’s like life or death with the fans or to put it in another way it is Football or Death.

When I was at school people took it far too seriously and you get told off if you don’t want to play. I remember getting told off a lot at school for not getting involved and taking it seriously. I don’t want to play, leave me alone (ok it was all sports at school except Athletics because I did not mind it, I enjoyed the throwing events). I don’t mind having a kick about and a bit of fun, I actually enjoy football when it is fun but when you take it too seriously it takes the fun out of it. Particularly when the whole team starts breathing in your face because they are taking it too seriously when they are losing and you are trying to have fun. 

Another thing which is annoying is the football fans. The fans take it too seriously; they think it’s the End of the World when their team loses. They shout at the TV and at the players telling them they are rubbish. There was an incident at the world cup last year when an English football goal keeper (or Goaleeeeeee) when he dropped the ball and all the football fans started getting loud and shouty in a way that makes them think that they are better at football than someone picked for the football team. England fans are the most annoying, they celebrate the start of the world cup a whole year before it starts and they try to find signs in the year like in 2006 when it was 40 years since England won it and the fans saw this as a sign that they were going to win – They Lost. England should know by now after 45 years of LOSING the world cup that they don’t stand a chance of winning it. The only chance England has is if they had super powers. They also had those STUPID Vuvuzalas which were just annoying; I would quite like to do a Pete Townshend (Guitar Smash) to one of those STUPID things. Fans also have their ridiculous songs they have to sing all the time, it’s a good thing they don’t do much in the way of Rock or Heavy Metal because they would ruin them. I was very happy when it was announced that England would NOT be hosting the world cup in 2018 or 2022 because I knew it would be a bad thing. Usually the world cup is All In Your Face but last year I managed to escape most of it (i did like what Charlie Brooker said about the World Cup in his 2010 Screenwipe). Fans are also unable to behave themselves as well. They have riots when their team loses. I think what should happen is if a riot breaks out at a football match the 2 teams playing get relegated (whatever that means) for a while. Not 1 year that is not long enough, I think the teams should be relegated for at least 5 years and then with the threat of their team being relegated their fans will learn to behave themselves more often and Football would be a lot nicer then – won’t it.

Why does Football take forever, it’s 90 minutes long plus extra time if they need it. Why have extra time. Extra Time is so annoying, we have had 90 minutes of it, that’s enough. It’s extra time which can cause GOOD TELEVISION SHOWS TO BE MOVED AROUND AND RESCHEDULED. I have come up with several ways to make football more exciting like having Iron Footballs, Footballs on Fire but my latest Idea is the best one. You have the Goals on conveyor belts and as the game is playing the nets move closer together and after EXACTLY 90 minutes they shut together and the ball cannot get in. Then the GOOD TV SHOWS come on and don’t have to be rescheduled.

The best football match I have seen was Harry Enfield’s Association Football, there was also Pit Ball in the Channel 4 show Full Metal Challenge.

Football can be fun but when it is taken too seriously it becomes a matter of life and death and it becomes boring. FOOTBALL IS RUBBISH.

GENEPOOL (I might do some more Football Ranting in the Future)








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