Day 156: The 30th of December

Running out of days of freedom before I have to start work on this coursework.

So I wanted to talk about one of my many desires for this post. I often avoid talking about anything too large since I don’t like to tie myself down in terms of the time I have to spend writing, but in all fairness I nearly always write for the same length of time anyway, so I might as well talk about something interesting.

I have wanted for a while now to make videos. Specifically, videos which explain things: informative videos and videos that explain my own philosophies towards things. This is all in quite the same vein as these blog posts, except I pretty much talk about nothing in these at the moment.

What I mean is that I would like to, for example, make videos to explain certain aspects of my own university course. Not just to help other people, but as a revision tool for myself. I find that explaining things out loud to myself helps reassure me that I can actually understand what I am talking about.

I also feel as if there isn’t enough help online at the moment for these kinds of thing. Someone who understands a topic perfectly would be a brilliant help for many generations of students and while I cannot claim to be an expert by any means, I believe I could help people out. Just being able to organise a module into a cohesive order is something that I certainly struggle with when it comes to revision. Having a list of videos that lay it out perfectly would just make everything so easy.

Now, I say all of these grand plans for how I could help, but at the same time, I need to take the first step. If I can’t even start something as huge as a project like that, I will never get around to it. So, my thoughts are that I should work on this while I revise over the next month. I shall try my best to find some software to work with and I will try to make some videos.

Now, I mentioned that I didn’t just want to make educational videos. I feel like I understand the world a lot better than I did years ago and I pride myself on being able to give a reasonably good explanation of concepts and ideas. I don’t really want to push my own opinions onto other people, even if I do believe them to be the best (just the same as everyone else does), but I do think that there are certain things I can talk about. Relationships (though I have little hands-on experience), studying, getting through hardships in life and motivating yourself to keep going. I’d like to think that if this blog shows anything, it’s that I can keep doing something even when I feel exhausted. I can still persevere.

And, let me be honest. When I think about it now, writing a post, no matter its length, every night for the past 156 days is really rather incredible. It gives a way to trace back every day for almost half a year, even though my brain only remembers a fraction of those days. I’ll be able to read back over some of the posts I have written in years to come and I may remember things I might never have otherwise. And that feels special.

Now, I should really be off. It has been a fun year, guys, even if there have been as many ups and downs as usual. I’ll see you tomorrow night for the New Year post, in which I shall probably rattle off some predictions for the year to come. That’s what I did last year, though the file got wiped when my hard drive broke. Let’s make this list something to remember!

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 155: The 29th of December

Well guys, it’s almost the end of the year. I’m getting closer and closer to a full half a year blogging. Then I can start going a bit meta!

What I mean by that is that I may have a look back at my earlier posts to see what they were like. I don’t read my posts after I publish them normally, so I can barely remember what I talked about in the posts 154 days ago. It probably wasn’t interesting.

So, today I watched the new Star Wars film. It was actually pretty solid. As someone who hasn’t really seen much of Star Wars, I would say that it was a good film that would work fine as its own standalone concept. I know some of my friends didn’t like the film as much, by they are a bunch of stick-in-the-muds about the series anyway, so whatever!

I won’t spoil anything about the movie here, since I know that that is rather mean. Instead, let us move on to the rest of the day.

I slept. I slept for a lot of the morning and I slept when I got back home. This was justified though, I had only got a few hours sleep last night and I had a headache all evening. I find that headaches are the only reason I can have for napping in a day. I can’t just go to sleep if I didn’t sleep enough in the night.

That being said, there is something glorious about waking up from a nap and realising that it is still the same day. It makes you feel as if you aren’t wasting your time as much.

Unfortunately I am starting to worry about my coursework and exams. I really shouldn’t, I probably won’t get around to working on it until after New Year now. But still, I feel like I am going to get caught with my pants down and end up panicking closer to the deadline.

It will be fine. I can do research and plan in 1-2 days, probably. Writing the essays will be easy if it is all planned. I have ages to revise for the exams; they should be really easy to prepare for. So I will try to enjoy the remaining holiday time I have.

I’m going to head off now. Have a good night, everyone!

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 154: The 28th of December

Today I woke up rather early after a bad dream and spent the rest of the day doing very little. I often find myself thanking my brain for the chance to actually have a full day for once.

Furthermore, my brain also gave me a topic for this post: dreams! I love dreams and sadly I do not have enough of them for my liking, but the ones I do have are usually rather entertaining.

One of my favourite dreams, of which I can still remember almost all of it, was quite a complex one. Also, since it was a dream, much of the logic within it does not hold up under a second of conscious thought. And, since I have mentioned it, that seems really weird to me. How you can have a dream in which your brain assumes something to be true and common knowledge when your waking mind knows that is not the case.

Of course, dreams that you remember are actually formed in the few moments before you wake up, if I recall my slight knowledge of the subject accurately. If I am wrong on that, feel free to call me out; I can’t be bothered to look it up myself. That can lead to some interesting situations, such as when someone makes a noise that you hear in your dream and thus weave it into the fabric of the story. If the brain was more predictable I imagine you could actually deliberately affect the contents of a dream in such a manner.

Last night’s dream was split into two main parts. On one half, my brain managed to scare me with a very real example of some of my fears: social situations. In this case, I was in a Skype call with my mother and she asked me to get rid of our adopted cat. When I refused, she got angry and left and I got a message a moment later from one of my old friends, telling me that he was looking after her.

Now, let me break this down. To begin with, I was in a social situation. Admittedly, my mother isn’t particularly scary, but it sets it all up. Next, I get asked to lose something important to me. This is more of a concept than a definite idea, but losing something like a pet is a common cause of sadness. Then we get into the easier things. Someone gets angry. Not only that, I caused them to get angry. And to top it off, I am not even in a position to talk it out with them, having to rely on my friend to sort it out. This played into my natural fear of people talking behind my back.

Anyway, that was the first part of the dream. It wasn’t too bad really, it was more a feeling of sadness and panic than of any true fear. The other part of my dream was weirdly psychological. And, because I love analysing my dreams in far too much detail, let us discuss.

So, as far as I can recall, I kept returning to a large, pitch black room, with a single lit area in its centre. There would be a room within the room, with a sliding door that was always open. On the wall near the door there would be a set of lights – three of them – which would be organised in patterns. If a particular set of lights remained on, I would press the buttons that corresponded with them and I would be able to continue my dream.

Now, if the lights on the outside of the door were in a different pattern, I knew in my head that I had to enter the room and press a different set of buttons, corresponding with that combination of lights. All fine so far, I just kept being reset to the room outside of the room.

But in the last attempt before I woke myself up, I went to the door and saw that I had to enter, but when I was inside the lights were showing the pattern for the buttons outside. At that point there was a loud sound, like an orchestra hit, and I panicked, running for the door. As I reached it and started to get out, the door shut, trapping me between the door and the wall. At that point I lost the ability to move and sat there frozen, feeling for all the world as if someone was staring straight at the back of my head from within the room.

So, I woke myself up. I thought to myself ‘that’s quite enough of scaring me, brain’ and managed to drag myself out of sleep. It did take a little while for me to be able to move my arms and legs without feeling sluggishly slow though. Maybe a partial case of sleep paralysis.

But I’d like to briefly highlight the contents of my dream and how closely it correlates with reality. So, I was doing the same task, time after time, knowing exactly what I needed to do to get through it. Every now and then it would change and I would also know how to handle that situation. Then suddenly, the norm changed and I panicked, losing any ability to think rationally.

Of course it is easy to see the parallel with me, doing the same thing every day, knowing exactly how to get through each social interaction with the least pain. And when the interaction changes, I do find it hard. I lose the ability to predict exactly what each situation will bring and that is scary.

Now, this could all be completely irrelevant. There could be no link, it could just be a scary dream that I had. But then, I prefer to overthink these things for my own amusement. So there is that.

That’s just something to think about. I’m going to try to get some sleep now. Have a good one, guys.

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

 

Day 153: The 27th of December

Another day, another great game.

Today we sat down to watch the madness of playing Just Cause 3, which was great fun. Explosions, skydiving and all sorts of other fun activities made for an amazing afternoon. Of course, since I got up at 1:00 PM I only had the afternoon.

We also had a delicious dinner of roast beef, with my grandmother and all the family gathered around the table, as well as our friend from overseas. Christmas is a time for overindulging yourself on food and sleep, though it is a pity it has to end soon.

I think I can spare a few more days to fun though. Tomorrow sounds like it shall be quiet for a change and so I will try to get up reasonably early and enjoy some quiet Winter morning.

That just scared the hell out of me. I am writing this on my laptop and accidentally brushed the mousepad, causing me to highlight and delete half the text. Thank God that WordPress has an undo function.

Anyway, from myself and Grey, who sleeps now on my bed, it is goodnight. Farewell, ladies and gentlemen.

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 152: The 26th of December

Boxing day, eh? Now, where does that come from…?

According to a quick Google search, Boxing day is a day where tradesmen and servants would receive gifts from employers, masters or customers. The gift was known as a ‘Christmas box’.

I, however, spent my Boxing day having a rather delicious meal at the Ashdown Park Hotel. Of course, the food was highly fancy and my rather picky eating habits struggled as usual, but I ate a reasonable amount. That didn’t stop me from gorging myself on a lot of sweets when I got back home. Just goes to show that I am as childish as ever!

I also downloaded a new MMO to try out. It is apparently rather social, so I am hoping I can build up my confidence by talking to people on there. I find it hard to interact with strangers in online games normally, no matter if it is text or voice chat. In CS:GO I typically let Ben do the talking, he is usually loved by every player in the game by the end of a match.

I was doing some thinking the other night about the possibilities of travelling around the world. Of course, the idea terrifies me, but at the same time I feel that if I managed to survive such a journey at some point I would come out of it with many whimsical stories.

This might seem like a thought that came out of nowhere and truly, it is. As it is, the world is a very dangerous place as of late and I am rather protective of my life and continued wellbeing. I guess the idea of adventure is somewhat exciting, though the lack of amenities worries me even in this country on occasion.

Anyway, just an odd little thought. We shall see how my path twists and turns over the next few years of my degree. And with that, Elliott Rogers shall sign off for the night.

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 151: The 25th of December

Christmas happened today! I got presents and everything. It was good.

I got the usual large stack of delicious treats, as well as games and all sorts of other goodies. We also showed our guest how Christmas is really done. Yet, at this stage I am tired. It is 2:20 AM and I just finished trying out my new mouse with Ben.

So, on that note I am not going to rabbit on. We shall have plenty of time for that soon enough, I assure you. Once Christmas has settled down.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas!

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 150: The 24th of December

It’s Christmas Eve in the Rogers’ household. So, in the spirit of the season, I should do I Christmas post. It’s only fair.

Christmas has always been a really happy time of year for me. When my siblings and I were little we used to go to sleep early on Christmas Eve and we would wake up on Christmas Day with stockings on the door handles of our rooms. Then we would take them and run into my parents’ room, jump on their bed and open all of the stocking presents. These are usually fairly small things, like sweets and other little objects of interest. The main presents are downstairs.

Now, at Christmas time we always have a real tree, as you do, and it is always decorated to a stage of extreme beauty. However, when we were young we didn’t have our main presents under the tree. That was the spot for presents brought from friends and family, not Santa’s gifts. Those were left in large piles in the living room, a pile for each of us.

This used to be the most exciting part of the day. My father would bring in the large video camera and set it up to film us each year while we tore into the wrapping paper. The cat, Amber, would run and play with the loose scraps of paper that fell to the ground and we would generally have a great time. As I said before, Christmas was always a family-only thing, only my parents and my siblings allowed. Not that I don’t enjoy the company of others; it was just a very personal time.

That would occupy most of the morning, with people getting up to make tea and other things on occasion. Since we have Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve, we don’t have to worry about all the cooking and getting dressed. Most years we wouldn’t even bother getting out of our pyjamas.

The afternoon was spent tinkering with presents, playing any games we had received and generally doing whatever we felt like. We would come back together for various television programmes, such as Doctor Who, obviously. Other than that, we would end up, in the evening, having the remains of the turkey and other foodstuffs that we had not eaten the previous evening.

In my opinion there is no better way to spend a Christmas. Of course, it is very different from how many people spend the day, but each to their own. I shall be getting into bed shortly so that I am ready for tomorrow, too.

Anyway, I cannot think of anything more to say on the subject of Christmas. So, I shall instead say this. Stop reading this post and get back to enjoying the festive season, guys!

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 149: The 23rd of December

Well, it’s almost Christmas Eve now. In fact, it is already Christmas Eve while I write this, but let us imagine it isn’t.

I did stuff today. I felt useful for once. It was pretty nice. I started off by doing some hoovering / vacuuming of the house and finished the day with a drink with friends, as well as handing out some presents.

Unfortunately I didn’t get quite drunk enough to reach the stage of uncaring that I was at last week. A shame that, to be sure. Instead I now feel awkward about all the things I said to people, which is not too pleasant.

No matter though, for I am back now and it is coming up to the most wonderful time of the year. I’ve managed to save up my exhaustion to the stage where I am really tired tonight, let’s just hope it lasts until tomorrow. For those of you out of the loop, I always go to bed early on Christmas Eve ever since I was little so that I am not there when Santa comes.

That magic is still there even now. I’m not one to ruin a good thing either. So, I’m going to head off. I’ll try and think of something cool to write about for the 150th post tomorrow. Joy of joys!

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 148: The 22nd of December

Another peaceful day in the run up to Christmas, eh?

Of course, I am squandering my time as per usual, though. I should really do some wrapping and card writing soon, since there isn’t much time left. This feeling of freedom is too good to miss out on though. It’s not like I won’t have spare time for a while anyway.

Today an old family friend flew in from abroad to stay with us for the holidays. Such a strange feeling, since Christmas has always been a very personal thing in my family. Typically it is only close family here: my parents and siblings.

People should be settling down for Christmas soon, coming back from work and such like for a bit of rest. I wish them all the best. Still no snow though. It’s a shame, though hardly unexpected in England.

Have a good night, guys!

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.

Day 147: The 21st of December

Today I got the rest of the stuff out of my university house and I can finally feel like I am done for the year.

Of course, this still took a while, given that I slept for far too long. But no matter, it is done now. We headed off down there and arrived at around 4:00 PM; we managed to finish up by around 5:00 PM and start on our way home. Since then it has been a quiet evening. We had some nice nibbles for dinner and then I came back to Fallout 4 again.

Speaking of Fallout 4, I made the horrible mistake of deciding to build my settlement. I said to myself that I’d build one house and then call it quits for the night, but now it is 2:20 AM. I’m an idiot. I’m also going to force myself to get up to my alarm tomorrow, to start to balance my sleep cycles again.

At least I got quite a solid quantity of story done today. I’m on the verge of discovering the mysterious antagonist of the game, which is quite exciting. At the same time, my attention to detail is making my settlement building as, if not more, exciting. The fact that you can put down radios, televisions and ashtrays, as well as a wide assortment of furniture, sets the city-builder in me into a frenzy. The need to connect everything with power cables and generators is also really entertaining.

Anyway, I’m not going to keep gushing about this game all night. I’m instead going to go to bed. I’ll speak to you guys tomorrow night: hopefully it will be a bit earlier than this though.

Elliott Rogers, novice blog writer extraordinaire.