Blame the Goat

The blog of K.E.Brown; Writer, dancer, ukulele enthusiast

Getting Heavy With Some Life Stuff

I realized something this morning.

This is my last week as a student. After Friday, I won’t just be an unemployed 21-year-old who lives with her parents, I will be an unemployed 21-year-old with a BA in English who lives with her parents. I lay in bed staring at my Matt Smith poster and all I could think was “So when does my adult life start?” Cause it sure as hell isn’t starting next Monday.

I’ve spent my summer doing the quintessential young adult thing- going out to bars, crashing on friends’ couches, and concerts concerts concerts. I’ve blacked out in traditional Japanese karaoke rooms because Soju does not actually taste like alcohol. I’ve puked into empty Starbucks cups because I was late to work and barely had enough time to rinse my mouth out before teaching drama camp. I have been an excellent college student. And now it’s time to be done.

I really thought that by the time I got to this almost degree having point in my life, I would also be ready to launch the career having part of my life. When I was graduating from High School I was so sure that I would be at New York by this time, ready to become the next Broadway star. And then about halfway through college I decided that by the time I graduated, I was going to be in the process of getting my first novel published. As I got more realistic in my goals I figured I would be some sort of freelance writer or copywriting intern when I graduated.

Today, I applied to work at Jamba Juice, Best Buy, and Barnes and Noble.

But I think I’m okay with that. I had all of these grand plans for after graduation and all of them have fallen through but I’m not spazzing quite as hard as I was this morning.

Life is a weird thing, you know? I think that as far back as I can remember, I’ve had plans for the future. It was elementary school then high school then college. I never had to ask the question “what am I going to do next year?” or “where am I going to live next year?” And all of the sudden, those questions are slapping me in the face.

Here’s the thing though, there is something releasing about the not knowing. The ability to be spontaneous, to not be dealing with due dates and grades or lesson plans or parents, to be able to roll out of bed and go to work and then have the rest of the day to figure out what it is people do when they have nothing to do.

It’s time for me to explore. To find my balance between fun and responsibility, to find what it is that gives me meaning in life while still making enough to live on. I have time to write now but no pressure to get it done because my livelihood depends on it. I get to teach dance classes without the stress of being the one in charge of anything and on top of that, I get to keep being 21. I get to the non-school related bar hopping concert going socializing thing. And right now, there is nothing about the situation that stresses me out.

Legos, Guns, and Alien Violence

I don’t necessarily have a problem with guns/fighting in movies. To the contrary, some of my favorite films of all time are full of blood and gun-slinging fun; the Boondock Saints, V for Vendetta, and pretty much any zombie movie ever to name a few. But I always feel sort of justified in watching those movies because;

1- The gun slinging always has a purpose. Good or bad intentions, however misdirected, means that the person doing the shooting had to wonder “why am I doing this?” at some point.

2- I am old enough to know that sometimes people do the wrong thing with good intentions.

See, not a huge problem with the gun action on general principal.

That said, I went to see Brave this weekend with my mom[1]. Obviously it is a children’s movie so there were plenty of children in the audience and all of the advertisements were aimed at children. This “short animation” by Lego came on called Battleship.

Since I couldn’t find it on YouTube, let me break it down for you…

The scene opens on little Lego guys hanging out on a boat. They’re chilling out, maxing, relaxing all cool and whatever until one of the Lego dudes[2] notices an “unidentified floating object”. Our brave narrator hops onto a jet ski to go see what it is. Spoiler; it’s an alien space craft.

Here’s where the animation started to really bother me. Before the alien space craft shot at them or did anything hostile whatsoever, the Lego guys started firing literally every weapon they had at the thing.

Now here it is; this is an advertisement targeted at the future of our world. The kids who watch this will be living in a world where space exploration will be reaching new heights and the possibility of finding intelligent life is actually conceivable. Instead of teaching the people who will be pioneering the future to say “hey, we take up space in the universe, you take up space in the universe, we have something in common!” We’re teaching them to blast away anything they don’t understand.

Not only are they solving their problems with guns, they’re preemptively solving possible conflicts that haven’t actually happened yet with guns.

That seems like a good life lesson[3].

  And then, because the aliens were defending themselves from the Lego blasts, the Lego guys came up with the plan to surrender peacefully. The fighting stopped, the aliens were cool about the whole thing and THEN, the Lego Hero built a GIANT GUN and BLEW UP ALL THE ALIENS.

I was like

 

 

 

 

 

So NOW, not only is it okay to arbitrarily blow up whoever makes you slightly uncomfortable, but to get close enough to do so, it’s okay to LIE? If someone did that in real war, they would get nuked off the planet.

Basically, this video had two lessons in about as many minutes;

1- If something is different from you, kill it and ask questions later

2- It is okay to lie if the end justifies the means

 I worry for the future.


[1] An EXCELLENT movie to take your mother to see by the way. She will cry and probably kiss you in public.

[2] Yes, they’re all dudes. Because Lego refuses to market to girls and, apparently, also refuses to acknowledge the existence of females in the military. But that is a rant for another day.

[3] Sarcasm.

Plopped

So I have this thing about words.

I love them. More than love, I am obsessed with them. If words were a person, I would have been issued a restraining order long ago. If words were a movie, I would be at the midnight release in costume. If words were a book…. wait, that sentence feels reduntant. The point is that words, the way words came into common vernacular, and the different ways that people use words is my brain candy.

So when I see a word consistantly missused, I get very defensive of the poor thing. Today’s shining example is the word “Plopped”.

“Plopped” is an onimonopia* that describes the sound that a liquid or amorphous solid makes when it is dropped onto a taught surface. It has since been mangled to the point where it can be used to describe the sound of anything being dropped onto a surface which irks me but I’m not really losing any sleep over it. The important thing is that it is an onimonopia** and is therefore treated accordingly when used in a sentence.

So when I see authors using “plopped” to descibe something being placed somewhere with no sound whatsoever, I begin to question the state of publishing.

I recently came across a book by a YA author who I really enjoy and respect (and who shall remain nameless because pointing fingers is rude and unnecissary). Her books are fun and fast paced and her writing always gets the job done and gets it done well. In one of her more recent books, however, I read this sentence;

 

 

 

He plopped the corner of dry flakey croissant bread with dry flakeychocolate into his mouth? Really? It made a noise that could be described as plopped? I think somebody didn’t quite follow the recipe when making your pain au chocolat if it’s plopping. Or maybe they didn’t cook it all the way. OR, you know, there was possibly a more accurate verb for that particular sentence.

The moral of this story is that words are not just important, they are crucial. And you can’t just arbitrarily search “put down” on thesaurus.com, close your eyes, and pick a word.

*Word that replicates a sound for those of you who slept through the second grade😉

**See above

My First Ever Blogpost (on wordpress)(sort of)

I miss blogging. I used to blog all of the time and I had all of these followers and it was great fun but then I graduated from High School and College started and things got all time consumy and hard so I deleted it. Now I’m back because all I have left are fun elective writing classes and I’m bored.

My other reason for picking up blogging is that, I’ve found that having a blog helps form a community of people who have similar interests to you and my NYR is to finish and start revising a novel. Like, actually finish… I have a folder on my computer fondly known as the graveyard of unfinished novels. It ranges from stories that I only got a few chapter into to seventy thousand word documents of utter drivel with absolutely no conclusion. But I want to graduate from CWU next winter with a completed manuscript ready to go. And I always write most consistantly when I’m blogging…. no idea why.

A few things about me really quickly;

Favorite Supervillian

 

 

 

 

 

 

Favorite 80’s teenage Hearthrob

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Favorite genre of corny monster movie

 

 

 

 

 

 

Favorite person that I hugged at comicon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Favorite time-traveler

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think that’s all the essential information anybody ever needs about me.

Until next time!

Go here http://blamethegoat.tumblr.com/

it’s better cause sometimes I actually post stuff.

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