Skydiving…

There aren’t many things in life that can make me say “I will unequivocally never do that”. Knowingly eating a cheeseburger with onions, swimming with sharks, and singing in front of a crowded room full of people. Those are just a few of the things that make the list of things I will unequivocally never do. Up until recently, I would have put jumping out of an airplane at 13,000 feet at the top of that list(Eating a cheeseburger with onions was a close second).
However, after trying it I can say that skydiving was one of the most thrilling and liberating experiences of my life. I’m not sure if it was the free-falling (RIP Tom Petty) to Earth at 120 miles per hour, or if it was the feeling of being completely free from the stresses of life for a few minutes that was the best part. People have asked me if I was scared or if it was a terrifying experience. I can honestly say no, it wasn’t either of those things. I looked at skydiving as something could be fun but also something that I needed to do. I needed to face a big fear. I’ve let so much stress build up in my life over the last four or five months that I felt like it was physically weighing me down. Each day I felt a growing pressure due to the stresses of studying for my LSAT. I needed to jump out a plane at 13,000 feet to prove to myself that I can handle what is likely, the most important test of my life so far.

After jumping, it feels as if the LSAT isn’t as menacing as I thought before. I would highly recommend trying it if you are struggling with stress or dealing with a problem you don’t know that you can overcome. Everyone says they could never jump out of a plane. Well it’s not really that hard, you don’t even jump. You stand up, walk three feet to the door, and then you just fall. The hardest part is convincing yourself you can do it. It seems like the craziest thing in the world to try, but I think the craziest thing in the world is to live life without taking risks. So, if you aren’t going to jump out of a plane, I would suggest finding something that you think you would never do and to try it. Life is too short to go through without doing something crazy, so find your thing and do it!

Fun Fact: (Since I am sure you’re tired of reading about sky diving by now, here are some survey results from The Huffington Post in 2012 about America’s favorite burger toppings)
Cheese: 82% 👍🏻

Lettuce: 59% 👍🏻

Tomato: 59% 👍🏻

Grilled Onion: 56%😱

Bacon: 54%👍🏻

Pickles: 48% 👍🏻

Raw Onions: 43% 😨

Mushrooms: 33%😖
 🍔 🍟 

Blog #3 ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 Review 

Season 7 of ‘Game of Thrones’ just concluded on a very strong note, but like with many of our short lived favorite GoT characters,we were heartbroken to see it come to an end when there was still so much story and potential to explore. Of course we wanted more but maybe it’s better to leave the auideince wanting more than leaving them feeling full and happy. The last episode did what it was supposed to do, leave us salivating for the final season which may or may not come out for another year and half (Pray to the Gods, the Old and the New it’s not two years). Season 7 certainly had its moments. In my opinion two of the top 10 episodes in the show’s history came this season with “The Spoils of War” in episode 4 and “Beyond the Wall” in episode 6. Those two episodes were two of the finest produced television episodes ever made.  

Truly, this season offered remarkable storytelling and epic sequences that fans of the show have been waiting years and years for. But, that’s not to say that season 7 isn’t without its flaws as well. The shortened season brought forth many meaningful moments and got the ball rolling fast, but this is a show that has prided itself on taking its time for six years now. The lack of smaller character driven moments was felt this season for certain. Many of my favorite moments in the series were with just two characters and brilliantly written dialogue. Just two characters, simply sitting down in a room drinking wine and discussing their pasts and the mistakes they had made along the way. The whole relationship between Ned and Robert in season 1 was built upon those little moments of character driven dialogue. We didn’t get many moments like that this year maybe aside from Jon and Dany. Brilliantly written characters like Brienne, Qyburn, and Bronn were the biggest losers in terms of lost screen time due to the shortened season. Bronn as always, delivered the best one liners the show has to offer and did get an amazing solo tracking shot sequence in the aforementioned “Spoils of war” episode. But still, it was a shame that he wasn’t used more consistently throughout the season. Brienne of Tarth was subjected to bench role duties this season aside from one shining moment where she reminded us how great her character can be in her spar with Arya at Winterfell. Brienne is a character of action and Gwendolone Christie plays her with such a ferocity that it was a big disappointment to see the adventures of Brienne and Pod not continue. Brienne and Pod should have gone to Eastwatch and Gendry should have been left in Winterfell in the penultimate episode of the season. It would have flowed better with the story and would have given Brienne and Pod their moment of action for the season. Lastly, the slithering Qyburn was barely seen this season. For being the psychopathic Hand of the Queen, Qyburn was given few scenes and only one deliciously evil scene in which the great but underused Anton Lesser performed splendidly. This man is Cersi’s secret weapon against Dany and her dragons more or less. It’s quite a shame he was given such small sceeen time. These characters along with many other secondary characters lost out on a lot of the juicy dialogue we’ve grown used to hearing in seasons past. Edd, Gilly, and Tormund are just a few names that come to mind. I think that once season 8 roles around David Benioff and Dan Weiss will realize that they may have underwritten a few important moments or characters and will look to include more of those in the final season. With rumors of the episodes being feature length,it should make room for great character driven scenes along with the amazing action set peices Thrones has become famous for. 

But let’s talk about what this season did right and wrong specifically, shall we? In this week’s edition of “The good, the bad, and the ugly” we will break down the good moments, the bad moments, and the “Oh my god that’s your aunt your sleeping with…aka the ugly moments” in season 7. 

Spoilers from here on out (Duh)<—Cinemasins

Let’s start with the good: 

  • Arya Stark avenging the Red Wedding as  Walder Frey (🙌🏻 The North Remembers)
  • Dany landing in Westeros, FINALLY!
  • The battle of the Greyjoy fleets 
  • Sam cleaning the toilets montage, that film editing though 🤓
  • Ice and Fire meeting for the first time         ❄️ 🔥 
  • Jon and Dany’s electric exchanges
  • Cersi giving the coldest kiss of death since season 5 😘 🌚 ⚰️
  • The Lannisters vs the Unsullied, even with it being a montage sequence still great 
  • Olenna Tyrell’s badass exit of the series 🍷 😎
  • HotPie making a nice cameo 
  • Arya retuning to Winterfell (More on this later though)
  • DRAGONS…FUCKING DRAGONS IN ALL OUT WAR! 
  • Anything that happened in the last twenty minutes of the episode “The Spoils of War”
  • The tracking shot of Bronn in said episode, amazing directing by Matt Shakman
  • The final shot of Jaime charging and having his Braveheart moment in that episode
  • Arya and Brienne sparing scene (Masie Williams is the next action star, mark my words) ⚔️
  • Gendry coming back! This was long overdue, but still it was good to see the lad and the legacy of Robert Baratheon make a comeback to the show 
  • Tyrion and Jaime reuniting in the basement of the Red Keep. Mainly due to the amazing acting of Peter Dinklage in the scene. 
  • Jon and his party of six going North of the Wall
  • Berric Dondarion’s awesome light up sword  🔥🗡
  • The Night King’s army showing its numbers and strength 
  • The Night King taking care of Viserion (RIP  🐉) 
  • The Night King taking care of Viserion in a different way (Hello White Fyling Dragon)
  • Cersi, Jon, and Dany meeting in Kings Landing to discuss the threat
  • Like 15 major characters in one mega scene
  • Almost everything with the final episode
  • Cersi and Tyrion oh my god what tension
  • Jaime leaving Cersi, FINALLY
  • Jon being revealed as Aegon Targaryan
  • Littlefinger dying, FINALLY 🙌🏻🔪⚰️
  • THE WALL FALLING DOWN😱😱😱

All of these are pretty self explanatory, the bad I will try to elaborate on 

The bad:

  • Ed Sheeran in Game of Thrones…Why this was a thing I will never know. I would understand giving him a small cameo, but David and Dan gave him speaking lines, closeups, and worst of all a shoehorned opportunity to sing. This could have been forgiven had Arya killed Ed Sheeran in violent way along with the rest of the young Lannister army me , but they wanted to show Arya’s humanity…which they would later throw out the window with how creepy and serial killery she becomes to Sansa. 
  • Euron Greyjoy’s makeover…This man looked like something out a 90s music video for all of season 7. I get they needed to change his character after he had received terrible fan feedback from season 6, but the makeover should have been in the form of the character’s personality and not his appearance. 
  • The tumultuous ending of the Dorne saga. One of the worst written storylines GoT has given us came to a somewhat okay ending with Elaria and Tyene being brutally punished for the remainder of their days, but still this story of revenge would have been best served as a three episode arc in season 6. Oberyn Martell’s legacy deserved better than this. 
  • Bran… Brandon Stark aka The Three-Eyed Raven is no longer a character. He is now a plot device. He is used only to move the story forward when it seems there is no other way to. Bran is like the replay ref in the NFL, he just hangs out in the background till he’s needed. Bran is one of the few main characters from the pilot still kicking so giving him this treatment is a shame. Issac Hempstead-Wright is an incredible actor and shines every time he is given something, but Bran should be doing more with his powers than staring at trees and fires . The audience never could connect with creepy ass Bran this season. Hope for better writing next season.
  • Jorah’s greyscale…That’s it? I wasn’t a fan of the cliffhanger ending to this specific storyline from last season. I didn’t want another character I liked being gone for a whole season. But just having Jorah go to the Citedale to find a cure was a letdown. Greyscale has been in our heads since all the way back in season 2. It’s a formidable disease and I wanted to see Jorah travel far and wide across the world to finally be cured by Sam with his last whither of hope. 
  • Arya and Sansa relationship… Did their beef need to last the final four episodes? This was a high school drama fight between two characters who had seen so much growth since season 1. Friction would have been fine, but Sansa was given nothing to do but fight with Jon and Arya this season. Arya’s talents were wasted on this squabble instead of doing more important things (Like going North of the Wall with Jon). Arya and Sansa could have had this clash happened if Jon had stayed in the North. It would have been great to have a Jon and Arya reunion and it would have made some of that Sansa jealousy from season 6 seem smoother. Arya senses Sansa’s jealousy of Jon and moves in to defend him. 
  • Littlefinger… I am glad the game of secrets and whispers between LF and Varys finally had a winner, but the manner in which that loser was decided was a letdown. Littlefinger has served one purpose since season 6, sabotaging the Starks. But he really didn’t do a good job at it. Arya and Sansa’s rough relationship wasn’t handled all that well and part of the reason was that Littlefinger did so little to tear them apart. He had nothing to do all season besides whisper in Sansa’s ear… but about nothing. No major schemes were plotted or betrayals carried out. This was the man behind the entire story. A man who started all out war, killed a king, and murdered a woman who loved him. Many of us thought Littlefinger would turn out to be the true villain of the story. He would have been  the “king of the ashes” we were told. A scary and calculating man, it’s a disappointing ending to one of the best antagonists in the show. 
  • Varys… The Spider and his web was left on the bench for most of the season much like Brienne and Pod. Shame, Varys had one memorable scene where we almost figured out his intentions after an intimidating threat by Dany. A truly grey character, we still don’t know anything about Varys aside from his trickery and lack of a certain thing. The unknown prophecy of his death is intriguing though. 
  • “Beyond the wall” and the somewhat happy ending…As previously stated, Gendry should not have gone North of the Wall with Jon and company. Brienne, Podrick, Arya, and or Edd should have. Gendry just ended up running away anyways. The other problem with this episode is the lack of death. Yes, GoT has plenty of death but this episode lacked emotional deaths. Thoros of Myr was a good character, Viserion was an important plot device and sad animal death, but someone(s) more important should have died. Tormund almost did, he could have, as a fan favorite it would have been a gut punch. Edd going would have represented Jon’s last true Nightswatch brother dying and it would have showed how the Great War is more than just the Watch’s problem now. Brienne going North would have made sense but her character still had story to tell. But losing Pod in this episode would have been a heartbreaker. A young lad just trying to be a good squire and finally getting his chance at combat, but it’s too much for him and he dies in a sacrifice for Brienne or Jon. Ahh, so much better. 
  • Benjen Stark… This was a plot device, it was just too random, and why didn’t Benjen get on the horse with Jon? Why didn’t he show up earlier? These things could have been forgiven with better writing and more episodes I am sure 
  • Only 7 episodes…Cause 7 is less than 10.

Finally let’s get it over with…

The ugly:

Jon and Dany getting together seemed like it would be great and it may have been, but…you know had there not been a blatant hammer bashing us over the head reminding us that these two are aunt and nephew. Making the decision to cut their sex scene together with the reveal of information that Rhaegar Targaryean (Dany’s big brother and Jon’s father) and Lyanna Stark (Jon’s mother) had a secret wedding was bold. That was done intentionally to show us that this will be be an uncomfortable relationship between Jon and Dany going forward. All that on top of Tyrion having a “WTF” face as he sees them together spells out bad news for the fate of Westeros’s favorite incestuous couple. (Sorry Jaime and Cersi, and Craster and his daughter-wives, oh and maybe Theon and Yara?) 

Overall, season 7 was yet another great season of Thrones. Right now, I would say it’s probably middle of the pack in comparisons to the other seasons but still great. Seasons 4,3,6, and 1 still rank better for me personally, but we shall see with time where it truly ranks. I will probably be doing more Thrones reviews, maybe by seasons. If you guys have any thoughts on how I can improve my reviews please let me know! If you wanna talk Thrones season 7 leave a comment on Facebook and I will certainly chat you up. Thanks for reading 

Blog #2

Something I’ve been told over and over in my adult life is that I am a terrible planner. I would use the excuse that I am twenty-something year old guy and I can get by without organization and plans. It somewhat worked for me through undergrad college, though I did miss a handful of quizzes and assignments that probably prevented my 3.75 GPA from being the 3.85 GPA I so rightfully deserved. But back to the topic at 3/5 of my right hand (Nub joke to anyone who knows me). I’m sure most young people feel the way I felt about planning and organization. It might be safe to say that Heath Ledger’s the Joker had the most relatable method of planning to the average young person in that they “Introduce a little anarchy…upset the established order and everything becomes chaos”. Chaos, anarchy, and anti-establishment sounds like a typical weekend for college students doesn’t it? Well maybe not all that extreme, but ask most young people what their plans are for the week. They are likely to tell you it includes getting some form of inebriated along with a series of other semi-productive tasks. Tasks that could range from going to class/work, to doing homework/”studying”, or to getting swole for Instagram. My every day plan up until recently was to wake up five minutes after my alarm went off, get ready for school or work, and then hope that I had everything I needed done for that day. If I didn’t have those things done I would hope to find the motivation to get them done at some point throughout the day… but you know after my Netflix time, Twitter time, texting time, second Netflix time, a shower, food time and so forth you get the idea. I had no order to my life. If this routine sounds familiar to your situation then you should consider trying what I have tried. 
Buy yourself a small notepad and every day write down what your goals and tasks are for that day. I read somewhere that all the great successful business people in the world have the trait of walking around with their personal notepad, and how they take down notes and cross off their goals as they complete them throughout the day. Richard Branson does it and he’s a cool guy so why not me and you right? Since I have started doing this I’ve found this has helped me keep track of things easier and be far more productive than I usual am. It’s gotten to the point where I am planning out my goals days in advance✏️📒. To be clear, I am not just suggesting to walk around with a planner, we’ve all been through middle school we know the value of a planner. What I am suggesting is to write down things like “find time to study for an exam” and then write a side note about how your studying went or write down an important piece of study material in your notebook for future reflection. Apparently, studies show that things you write down in your personal notepad stay in your brain easier than if you were writing down notes just in a class or a meeting. My routine now is to wake up every morning and think of anything at all I can accomplish that will be productive. Today for instance, my first goal was to wake up on time. I only overslept by one minute so we’ll give that a close enough accomplishment. But besides that I met many other goals. I replaced my car battery, cleaned my room, studied for my LSAT test for an hour (😱), walked my dogs, did laundry, wrote two blog posts, and read two of my books for an hour. After completing everything I had wanted to, I of course indulged in my normal hobbies of watching Netflix and checking Twitter. Even after doing that I still felt felt accomplished from what I had done in my day. I like having a sense of order and organization in my life. It helps relax me and it gives me satisfaction when I can cross a goal off my list. It feels exciting when I have an interesting thought or idea pop into my head and I can jot it down, then think about how to utilize it later. 
Still aren’t sold on this whole notepad experiment? How many times have you seen a new restaurant or bar you wanted to try and completely forgotten about it? Or how many times have you heard of a great deal going on at your favorite pizza place only to curse the world when you realized you missed the chance for a large pizza for less than $10😰. Keeping track of your week is only a small portion of what this notepad can be good for. Your assignments won’t be missed as often, you’ll be less likely to neglect those chores you’ve been pushing off for months, and you’ll remember something you would have normally forgotten within three seconds. With a personal notepad you get the satisfaction of seeing a completed list at the end of your day. That notepad makes it seem like you have your life together even if only for a brief moment. And if nothing else, you can use your notepad to hold your personal Arya Stark kill list, you know the list for all those who wronged you and your family. Everyone has their own version of “Joffrey, Cersi, Walder Frey, Meryn Trant, Lord Tywin…” 😆
Since I have started using my notepad I’ve noticed a slight but certain uptick in my happiness. Either I am happy because I am productive or I am productive because I am happy. Maybe both? If you feel like you lack structure and goals in your life I would highly recommend trying this experiment out. I can say that adding organization is making me a better person and I hope it can have the same effect for you! 

Fun Fact: If you spent one night in each hotel room in Disney World, it would take you 68 years to have stayed the night in every room they have!!! 

https://media1.giphy.com/media/XN5yQdKrK3v4A/giphy.gif 

First Blog

So for a long while I’ve thought about making a blog. I always would come up with excuses as to why I shouldn’t or couldn’t do a blog, but now I believe is the time. I’m going to use this blog to express my feelings on things like politics, movies, sports, but mostly my personal life. If you find me or what I am saying interesting enough to read, then by all means read away, if not then no hard feelings say this blog is stupid or boring and watch more dog videos on Facebook. But if you do continue to read my stuff be warned, for even though I am a college grad who graduated with honors, my grammar is horrendous. 😬

I am doing this blog to help relieve stress as I have found writing has always made me feel better. I don’t really express my feelings or emotions all that often and putting them to paper makes it easier. I have recently gone through a big change that has made me rethink my life. I want to become a kinder and better person and each day I want to improve myself. I’ve come to the realization that life is too short to be the grumpy and cynical person I’ve been for years. My goal with this blog is to bring some joy into my life by talking about my interests and hobbies, but it’s also to release some of the personal stress that has been building up in my head for a long time. If you’re still reading to this point I shall say thank you, you’ve almost made it through my first blog post👍🏻. Still reading? Okay, well the first lesson I learned today on my journey of self-improvement is not to take your true friends for granted. I realized that I haven’t been half the friend that this particular guy has been to me over the years. I realized that I have taken his friendship for granted like I have done with many things in my life. After today I am will be putting in much more of an effort to not take my friends for granted. I am going to be the friend this guy has always been to me. It won’t be an easy change, but it will be a change I am committed to making. Openly I admit I am a mean and sarcastic person. This a recipe for angering a lot of people, and angering them often. Being mean and sarcastic  for so long made me feel superior and better than this friend when in reality I am neither of those things. I project my insecurities onto people and it leads way to me being a bad friend and probably even a bad person sometimes. This aspect of me affects the people closest to me the most. I want to change that. Truly, I would do anything for my friends. Friend is not a word I get to use often. Honestly, I have few friends. But the ones I have I wouldn’t trade for the world. I know I can be better friend to the guy who has helped me through a rough time in my life (in more ways he knows). And starting today, I will be. I am not going to act better than him anymore, but I am going to be better to him, and all my friends. The jokes I would make at my friend’s expense will be replaced with questions of their well-being and positive thoughts and encouragement. I will wish them well and offer to help them without expecting something in return. I will not take for granted those who are always there for me anymore. It’s taken me a long time to learn such a simple lesson, but I know this lesson will make me a better person.

 

Fun Fact: Though Buzz Aldrin was the second man to walk on the moon, he holds a far more prestigious honor if you ask any dog. Buzz was actually the first man to pee on the moon 🌕😁