Hi all -
I'd like to start posting monthly updates. My hope is to make these a recurring post so I can commemorate and share what’s been happening in my life. I have no idea what structure this will take, but I’ll likely talk about a wide variety of things that have stood out for me.
Let's dive into some of my highlights in June.
Last month, I ran my first race in over eight years. Back in college, I used to love participating in races, though the distances were never too crazy. Even though I’m a more experienced runner at this stage in my life, I kept the distance on this race low and participated in a 5k in my local neighborhood. The weather was brutally hot that day and I was very under-hydrated, but the race was a lot of fun!
As the cherry on top, however, my partner invited a handful of friends and some of her family to support me at the park near our apartment. I felt a lot of love and encouragement for what ended up being such a short run.
Overall, I finished the race at 29:53 which is a time I’ll gladly take, given that I’ve been struggling various ankle and knee injuries since December 2021.
As a bonus, I’ll throw in my running playlist I’ve been rocking out to lately. It’s all electronic, and mostly Psy/Goa stuff, but it makes for great running music! If that interests you, feel free to pop it on for your next run.
In my first post on the blog, I mentioned my music project. However, I didn't go into much detail. So, without further ado, let me introduce you to Violet Noise. VN's a complete passion project and my goal is really to just make music that interests me. I do all of the songwriting, production, mixing, marketing and visual art. It's been a great outlet for me, if I'm being honest.
June saw me diving back into the swing of songwriting, whilst also toying around with some new sounds/techniques. Lately, I’ve been really interested in learning to chop breaks, inspired by all the break and jungle music I’ve been listening to in the last handful of months. As such, I’ve been strongly considering incorporating some of those sounds into my music.
As of right now, my plan is to release a couple of singles before diving deep into a much larger project, most likely an LP. After releasing my EP, I planned on slowing down a bit as a “palette cleanser” before immersing myself in a huge project. Currently, I have rough, rough, rough sketches for about 10 songs. Only 2 of which will survive. Half aren’t even real songs with full instrumentation yet. They’re just beats! Regardless, there’s nothing much to share at the moment, other than sharing that I’m working on music as much as I'm able to.
After everything that went down with Reddit last month, I’ve fully transitioned from Reddit to Tildes. I have to say, the experience has been really refreshing so far.
After spending well over a decade on Reddit, I started to realize just how much that place brought me down with its endless negativity. It felt like nearly half of the posts were laced with negative sentiment or were just focused on straight up complaining. It’s funny because right before all the API shenanigans began, I had started to really think about Reddit’s impact on my mental well-being. So, when all of this began to unfold, I gladly deleted every account I've ever made at Reddit and haven’t looked back since.
On the other hand, Tildes, has been a breath of fresh air. The community is pleasant, and the discussions there are real. Like… really real. It’s fun to be back on a platform that moves a little “slower” (I'll likely post about this concept at some point, since it's something that's been on my mind lately).
I have 4 invites Tildes left. If anyone reading this is interested, feel free to private message me on Mastodon. That’ll probably be the fastest way to get my attention.
While Overcast is certainly a good app and nothing to sneeze at, Pocket Casts ultimately still wins me over due to its customizable playlist features and better Apple Watch functionality.
This topic tends to elicit a diversity of opinions since its so dependent on the way in which you, as the user, prefer organizing and consuming your media. Personally, being able to organize the podcasts in my feed via adjustable filters neatly fits the way I approach finding the next thing to listen to. Therefore, Pocket Casts is the clear winner in my book.
Have your own thoughts? Suggestions for podcatchers/podcasts? Drop me a note on Mastodon, I'd love to chat!
La La Land
This will be my last note since I'm starting to realize that I could keep this going for quite a while!
My partner and I had a great time at the Rooftop Cinema Club in Chicago's West Loop, where we watched “La La Land.” I actually saw this film in theaters when it first came out, but this time around, I felt as though the film resonated with me more deeply. Maybe I’m just a little more media literate now? It's also possible that, because I'm older and have more life experience, many of the themes and hardships Seb and Mia go through are more relatable. And, without spoiling the film for those of you who haven't seen it, I think this allowed me to feel a deeper emotional connection to the end of the film.
No film is perfect, and La La Land is no exception to this rule. There are problematic aspects of the movie (white saviorism and all that). Those elements of the film occasionally lessened my enjoyment of the plot, and made certain moments harder to watch. Additionally,, many people online and in my own life have noted that the film sags in the middle. However, at the end of the day, there's a lot to this film that's special.
The set pieces, the music, the chemistry between Stone and Gosling… there’s a lot to appreciate here. All in all, it made for a really nice night out at the movies.
If you’ve read this far, then thanks! I’m still trying to figure out how I want to approach writing on this blog. I thought this format could be a nice way to hold myself accountable when it comes to posting consistently.
Stay tuned for more of my thoughts on this blog. I look forward to providing a July Highlights post soon enough.
Until next time!