Metropolis

“We have mortally wounded this sweet life supporting planet–the only one in the whole Milky Way–with a century of transportation whoopee.”
Kurt Vonnegut
A Man Without A Country

They watch us from the ground,
yet they were as tall as trees.
They carry pouches on their backs
and use big monsters to tear up
and tread on our ground water.
They speak,
but they will never know our
language.
They do this knowing that we will hide in our homes,
which they will find and knock
down eventually.
They tear down our homes,
and yet they abandon theirs,
leaving huge monoliths that
pollute our foundation and
block out the sun.
They knew not what they did,
but now that they do it seems
they just don’t care.
They bay be scared of us,
but we are scared of them for
that very reason.
They’d rather see us dead and let the world burn,
than to see us thrive and have
the world flourish.

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Typewritten for Your Viewing Pleasure

Spring break is upon me at the moment. In the first day or two I read Vonnegut’s book “A Man Without A Country” which was a fantastic read. It’s a book that could be read throughout the year, a chapter every month of the year. I also got a new app for my Macbook called Winston Typewriter and it’s kind of interesting. The program emulates the sight and sound of writing on a typewriter and the experience of writing on a typewriter. It’s a bit confusing and takes a bit to get used to but I think that’s kind of the point. Part of me wishes that I had an actual typewriter to write on. Though it would be a lot of work to keep it in tip top shape but that would be worth it for me.

The sound of the typewriter is just so…nice and fulfilling to hear the sound of me typing along and working on what’s there on the page. It’s also kind of like writing in pen as well since there is no backspacing, or deleting letters from the page. It’s made me a bit more productive, at least in writing this blog post. I wish that a program like this existed on Windows but I don’t think there is. Actually there is something that exists called Q10 which acts kind of like a typewriter in that there is no spellcheck or autocorrecting, but I don’t think it’ll be the same. Though I think that something that I want is for the window to not disappear when I click out of the document. That I think I will be the one plus to switching to Windows and using Q10. From looking at screenshots it kind of looks like a programming word processor.

I like this program quite a lot, I don’t know if you can tell.

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One thing that I find better than actually saving a file with this program is actually exporting the file and then deleting it. It gives the text a more important presence to it. There’s a finality to the words that I’m putting on the page. I can still edit it later and that’s fine by me, but for first draft purposes I’m going to continue using programs like this to just get down to writing. I’ve also just learned that Q10, the program I mentioned earlier has typewriter sounds in the program. One problem that I feel like is going to bother me is the fact that it can’t be used in a window it has to be full screened. I don’t know. I’ll have to test it out on a windows computer before I commit to anything. I suppose I could work at finding ways around the “issue” (at least I don’t think it’s that big of an issue but still).

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There is a documentary called “California Typewriter” which documents the history of the typewriter and one of the last typewriter repair shops in America. I’ve never watched the movie, only the trailer, but there’s one thing that I don’t agree with and it’s a quote at the end of the trailer “The future will be typewritten.” No. It won’t be. Sure there are people that want to replicate the experience, like I am, and there are products such as the Freewrite Typewriter, but I really don’t think that the future will involve typewriters, only the feeling of them. Or at least the feeling of permanence to the words that we type. That I feel will be the future. No spellcheck. No auto-correcting. Just typing and writing.

I think that more word processing programs should adapt to the philosophy of word permanence in writing. I feel like that would help a lot of people get more work done. At the very least there is a market for that kind of thing (as mentioned before with the Freewrite Typewriter) but I wished there was some cheaper alternative for getting an actual typewriter as opposed to getting a program.

Oh well, I guess this’ll do for now.

Jeff Rodgers (3-12-2019)

Poetry and Broken Headphones

The following paragraph was written over the course of the last month. The first sentence was written near the beginning of the month and the rest of it was written at around Valentine’s day. It went like this:

I sometimes feel like that long distance friend that doesn’t write or call for a long time then suddenly shows up out of nowhere, keeping to themselves and only occasionally chiming in to crack wise and then being misunderstood (or at least being met with silence). I also feel like God is a strange comedian. For starters, my wireless headphones broke, so now I have to get them replaced. Problem is my dad had been cleaning the house and he had thrown away the box which had the receipt. I should’ve kept the box with me, or at least tell my dad that was the reason the box was still around. Oh well…shit happens.

One thing I failed to mention was that a zipper on my bag was broken and caught a thread, so now there’s a hole along the zipper that used to protect my laptop. On the bright side I won a fifty dollar Amazon gift card from playing Scrabble the other day. That was fun.

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I’ve started writing poetry. Well that’s not true, to start writing poetry I would need to have not started writing poetry. I’ve written poetry in the past, way back in high school, but a lot of it was very rough, unfocused, and honestly just kinda weird. Nonetheless, as a writer I feel that it was part of my development as a writer. I think at the time I had more confidence then than I do now. Poetry seemed to have given me a chance to try and articulate what it was that I was feeling back then. Whether or not I accomplished this at the time remains to be seen. I stopped writing poetry mainly because I didn’t feel that I was good at it because I didn’t have the skill or talent that previous poets had. Storytelling seemed to be more attracting because I felt that I could do it, and it was encouraging.

Today, many years later, I find myself in a contemporary poetry class. One of the things that was brought up was the question of “Do poets still write like their successors?” This question was something that I thought I knew the answer to, and thus didn’t ask, similar to the question “Do we write essays in five-paragraph formats?” The answer to both questions is no. For some reason I took this as permission to write poetry again, so that’s what I’ve been doing. Of course I’m now doing it for a class assignment, but I like to think that’s the school equivalent of being paid to do something that you love doing. The poems are currently very…raw, for lack of a better term. I’ll share something soon, once I figure out what I feel is appropriate to share.

That’s all for now. See you around.

Jeff Rodgers (2-24-2019)
Listening to: Frank Ocean – nostalgia/ultra
Feeling: Pretty okay

Let’s Introduce Ourselves Part 2 – My Writing/Reading Career

One of the earliest memories I have of my writing career was when I had written a series of comic books called ‘The Adventures of Astronauts in Space’ when I was around nine. It lasted for ten issues and had a very, very, very limited run due to the immensely terrible quality and also the lack of resources to properly publish the comic outside of my household. The comics do exist in digital form, still unpublished. They will never be released, at least not in their current form. That’s a whole thing I’m not wanting to think about at the moment.

My career as a reader began pretty much when I was born. My hometown of Springfield, Illinois was–and still is, in my opinion–a pretty alright town. Central and southern Illinois always seemed to be the epitome of what middle America is supposed to look like. Springfield isn’t as big as St. Louis or Chicago but it’s a pretty decent size. There’s quite a bit to see and do and experience that anyone hasn’t been to Springfield will be entranced and excited by. As a native of Springfield I’m fairly proud of it. Despite the praise I’ve given I didn’t exactly have a happy childhood there. Nothing to do with the town itself, just the things that happened in it.

The only good thing that came from that town was the house that I had lived in for twelve years, more specifically my bedroom. Said room was situated in the basement where there was a door that led up to the backyard. Inside was a dresser, bed, a TV at one point, and shelves on the opposite side of the room that were filled with books. A lot of the books were more advanced for me to understand at the time, but there was a collection of children books. Every so often I would pull a book from the shelf and read it. In hindsight it didn’t matter if I could understand the words that were on the page, it only mattered that I was reading. Eventually I would go on to read The Tale of Despereaux and A Series of Unfortunate Events. These were the first two books that I ever finished fully. I suppose that’s when my reading career began to take off.

—————

Very recently I had a meeting with the people who are currently funding my college education (Department of Human Services, or DHS for short). We talked about what plans I had career-wise. In the meeting I realized, as I often do, that I had not been writing too much on this blog. I’ve started talking with a career counselor working at the college and we talked about my past writing experience and one of the things that counted as experience was maintaining an online blog. They asked if I had one I said I did. They made a point of saying that I put the URL of the blog on my resume so that potential employers know where to go to see my writing.

Well…if you’re a potential employer and you’re reading this: Hello!

If I’m honest I haven’t been good at maintaining a blog over the past…eleven years. I’ve had a few blogs here and there and each time I make one I end up forgetting about it due to school or other complications, or end up not having motivation to keep doing it and I just let it fall to the wayside. The lack of motivation comes from the fact that no one seems to be reading or responding to what I write on these blogs. I’ve never been known to be adept at being social, and a lot of the time when I think about this issue of writing blogs i always wonder to myself if the issue is much larger than my lack of posts and social ineptitude. Am I not entertaining enough for people to read? Do people even care about me or what I write? Do my friends care? My family?

I’ve gotten better at socializing over the years, in real life at least. Social media is a different story. It’s just exhausting, more exhausting than actual socializing. Despite my growth as a social creature I’m not exactly an expert, that’s how I feel anyway. No matter which kind of socializing I do, online or offline, I’m always good at starting relationships but never keeping them.

I’m getting off track. Over thanksgiving I started reading Stephen King’s book On Writing and in reading it I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to put forth more effort towards making a backlog of writing over the next year, otherwise I can kiss my dreams of being a writer goodbye. I’m starting now before the next year starts so that I’m more prepared for doing it over 2019.

I hope that you, reading this now, will join me. If you do, follow me on Twitter @JTeam95 and you’ll be notified when I post next time. Plus you’ll see what I do in between posts and other things. If you don’t, at least pop in every now and then to see how I’m doing. That’d be appreciated.

Jeff Rodgers (12-9-2018)

Some Things You May Not Have Seen or Cared About

Facebook Sucks, but I still need it

Today I’ve recently learned that because of Facebook’s changes to their ‘Platform Policy’ Twitter can no longer post to Facebook. I wish it didn’t bother me that much, but it does. I’ve already spoken about it extensively so here’s a screenshot of my feelings on the issue:

fuckyoufacebook

I’m drawing again, yey!~

One of the neighbor kids came over and asked me to draw a Pikachu so that’s what I did. Got me in a drawing mood so that’s what I’ve been doing. I’ll post progress reports on my Twitter (and maybe dedicated posts for them on here when I’m done) but here’s what the artwork looks like currently:

sedimentarypreview

It doesn’t look like much at the moment, but I think it will turn out fantastic in the end. I’m also gonna try and work at drawing a bit more, no promises though.

McDonald’s Merchandise

I was listening to Off Topic 141 (the official podcast of Achievement Hunter) and the guys were talking about McDonald’s jackets and I got very curious. I never found the jacket they were talking about but what I did find was an official online store for McDonald’s merchandise called Smilemakers. They have backpacks, shirts, hoodies, pins, necklaces, pens, and notebooks. They’ve got lapels, a Big Mac umbrella, a charm bracelet, a Big Mac puzzle, a golden arch wall charger, a fry box mousepad, and McDonald’s earbuds. They have merchandise for something called the Hamburger University, which is their training facility I’ve found upon further research. They have pretty much everything you can think of (well except for bathroom amenities, another missed opportunity just like ‘Ore-O’s’).

The big thing that I found surprising was how affordable everything is on the store. For example, there’s a ‘Hamburger University Journal Set’ that goes for $9. Many of the bags and totes are also very affordable, ranging from $3 to $70. Yes there is shipping and handling, but even then it’s still much better than the company gouging prices because it’s essentially a souvenir.

Kudos to you McD’s. This doesn’t make up for the crap burgers you make, but I’ll give credit where it’s due.

Why?

I have no clue what “Supreme” is, nor do I care for whatever they sell or do. Despite this I’m forced to acknowledge what the New York Post has done with their latest edition. I don’t understand it. I don’t think I want to understand it. I’m just…disappointed, I guess. I’m not even gonna clarify what the hell it is that I’m talking about, you go find it.

See ya around,

Jeff Rodgers (8-13-2018)
Currently Watching: Achievement Hunter – Let’s Watch Resident Evil 7

An Assortment of Random Thoughts at 3AM

Good morning! It is currently 3:16AM at the time of writing and I’ve been a busy with summer classes since the last time I wrote. I’m leaving it there to try and avoid what I usually try to write when it comes to posting on the blog which is come up with excuses as to why I haven’t been writing. Instead I’m just gonna chill out for a moment, listen to some music, and just write. I know, it’s crazy! I haven’t actually sat down and wrote anything under my own volition, let alone about what’s going on inside of my head. Oh jeez, I haven’t mined my brain since….

Anyways, I’m just gonna list some things and write about them briefly. Let this act as more or less what you’re going to see from me when I write anything publicly, outside of the occasional brief musings and retweets that you see on my Twitter.

Reading the Anime and Watching the Mango

I’ve been wanting to find a show or something to pass the time while I work. I’m completely indecisive however and I can’t decide on what to watch. Three shows that I can easily open and watch are Yuri On Ice (I have yet to watch the Dub), Cowboy Bebop, and Samurai Champloo, but part of me wants to watch a new show. Food Wars looks kind of interesting since I’ve been in a bit of a cooking mood as of late. Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid looks interesting but I’ve forgotten why I was interested. I have Re:Zero -Starting Life in Another World-, Tsuritama, Flying Witch, and Touken Ranbu Hanamaru in my bookmarks. I have Death Note, Gunslinger Girl, and Durarara!! on my Netflix watch list, the last of which I started at one point. I want to get into JoJo, but it looks so daunting I feel like I’m not going to understand it. I have yet to finish Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, maybe I should start there?

I don’t know, I’ll figure it out later when it’s not 4:30 in the morning.

Eric Andre and Death Grips

You would think there’d be more to talk about but there really isn’t. Eric Andre met and watched Death Grips rehearse a set and I’m jealous. That’s kind of it really.

Minecraft 1.13

Whenever a new Minecraft comes out I always start a new save and kind of just ‘dig through’ and look at what’s changed. Something compelled me, however, to get the pre-release like a couple weeks early (Maybe? This was a while ago) and I was very excited by what’s been implemented, especially the ‘Buffet’ world generation. The aquatic additions to the game have really breathed life into the game and I’m having a blast playing it.

Swearing

I’m not sure if I want to swear on my blogs. On the one the hand, I don’t care if I do since I want to express myself accurately in my writing. On the other hand, I don’t want to alienate anyone who may be reading this. I’m probably thinking about it too much.

My Sweet Potato Really Wants Attention

My sweet potato really wants me to get off the computer, so I guess this is where I’m gonna end it.

See you around,

Jeff Rodgers (8-4-2018)
Listening to: Feed Me, Crystal Fighters – Love Is All I Got

Let’s Introduce Ourselves

I’ve decided that I’m going to categorize my old posts under ‘old stuff’ in case some people are curious and want to read my older stuff. Not sure who would want to do that. [As of December 30, 2018, this is no longer the case]
Since I’m starting a new chapter here on this blog I figured that maybe we should have an introduction. Well, I should at least. You don’t have to do anything. Let’s get started:

My name is Jeff Rodgers. I am a 22 year old college student based out of Illinois. I was born on October 7, 1995 at around 10:45PM at St. John’s Hospital in Springfield. I graduated from Glenwood High School in Chatham. I am currently studying English, particularly creative writing, at SIUe.

Hm…I feel like I’ve revealed too much already. Plus reading it back I feel that it reads like a resume. Eh, I’m gonna keep going.

I have Asperger’s Syndrome, which means I’m on the autism spectrum. A long time ago my dad told me that I should mention this more when meeting new people so here we are. It’s something that you don’t really see at a glance, but once you’ve been around me long enough you’ll start to see it. Though I’m sure it’ll never come through in my writing. It’s like that old “On the internet no one knows you’re a dog” meme.

That’s about all I can think of at the moment. I’m gonna take a nap, maybe come up with something else to say.

See you later,

Jeff Rodgers (6-1-2018)

Minecraft Photographer

I play Minecraft a lot. Sometimes too much. Nonetheless it is, much to my chagrin, my all time favorite game. At first it was the simple, blocky 8-bit survival gameplay that drew me in. It was the ability to create a world that kept me playing. The potential to make whatever I felt was both overwhelming and absolutely beautiful.

I remembered that I took a bunch of screenshots while playing so I thought I would share a few of them with you: