Bombay Bicycle Club

First of all, may I apologise for the state of my blog: I haven’t posted anything but school since I can’t remember when! Unfortunately, my blog reflects my life: basically utterly school since the beginning of the semester. I haven’t even had time to read a regular novel since sometime in February, I think it was, which is a huge indicator of how much time I’ve had. But now, just as school is ramping up about a month before finals, I’ve somehow managed to find time to listen to a couple of new artists (new to me, that is) and so I figured I’d take a tiny bit of time to blog about it. Yay! 🙂

I first heard of Bombay Bicycle Club about a year ago on an NPR show (either Fresh Air or Weekend All Things Considered, both of which are fabulous) and I’ve remembered that there was this cool band I heard a bit of ever since then, but somehow I’d never managed to actually listen to any of their music until about two days ago. And yesterday, I bought one of their EPs and a single (which had two songs… 0_o) on iTunes. I like them that much.

I listened to the bombaybicycleclubtv playlist on YouTube, which had 11 songs. I immediately fell in love with all 11, but specifically the song “Ivy & Gold” which, if I had to recommend just one song to someone who’d never heard of them before, I’d recommend “Ivy & Gold”. The videos on YouTube for “Flaws” and “Evening & Morning” are quite cool, and the song “Lights Out, Words Gone” is excellent also, but as a starting-off song for Bombay Bicycle Club, “Ivy & Gold” is by far and away my top pick.

According to Wikipedia, the singer, the drummer, and the other guitarist all met when they were 15, and played together for about six years under various aliases before they met their bassist. I don’t know exactly when they decided on the name “Bombay Bicycle Club”, but I do know that they chose that name because of a chain of Indian restaurants called, what else, “Bombay Bicycle Club” that has restaurants all over London. It’s quite a catchy name, don’t you think? And it definitely has that cool/artsy feel you’d expect from an indie band. Well, according to Wikipedia they’re actually an indie rock band, and according to iTunes they’re just sort of generically alternative, but I think indie is a good enough category to cover them.

So that’s my little blog post to try to break up the monotony of schoolwork, since my next post will almost definitely be a post for English. I hope you liked it, I hope you keep reading, and I hope you listen to Bombay Bicycle Club and enjoy them as much as I do!

Read on! <3

13: 50 Ways to Fail Your Paper

A parody of the lyrics from Train’s “50 Ways to Say Goodbye“, written by me and OruHime. ^_^ (And the rhythm doesn’t fit the song, which really bothers my brain, but we’re so amazing it doesn’t matter. 😛 [OruHime’s words, not mine! XD])

My brain is paralyzed
My hand turned oversized
I’ll take the high road like I should
You said it’ll never be
That it’s not you it’s me
I’m not giving it to you for your own good

That’s cool but if my teacher asks me where my paper is I’m gonna say

It was blown up by the Death Star
Made into shoes by Moriarty
Soniced by a madman in a box
Help me, help me, I’m no good at deadlines!
Beamed down to a hostile planet
Zapped by Zeus
The mindmeld backfired on the Vulcan
Help me, help me, I’m all out of lies
And ways to say my paper died

My pride still feels the sting
I needed everything
Some day I’ll write a paper good enough (good enough)
She’ll think I’m Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Not Sir Boast-a-lot
How could you leave the night before?

That’s cool but if my teacher asks me where my paper is I’m gonna say

It was parked on by the Enterprise
Eaten by Echidna
Flambeed by a dragon
Help me, help me, I’m no good at deadlines!
Stabbed by a hobbit wielding Sting
Spontaneously combusted when Jeremy Irons sang at it
Run over by Death’s chariot
Help me, help me, I’m all out of lies
And ways to say my brain died

I wanna write a thousand lines for you
I wanna write the one you’re dying to read
But you don’t want to

That’s cool but if my teacher asks me where my paper is I’m gonna say
That’s cool but if my teacher asks me where my paper is I’m gonna say

It was blown up by the Death Star
Made into shoes by Moriarty
Soniced by a madman in a box
Help me, help me, I’m no good at deadlines!
Beamed down to a hostile planet
Zapped by Zeus
The mindmeld backfired on the Vulcan
Help me, help me, I’m all out of lies
And ways to say my paper died

It was parked on by the Enterprise
Eaten by Echidna
Flambeed by a dragon
Help me, help me, I’m no good at deadlines!
Stabbed by a hobbit wielding Sting
Spontaneously combusted when Jeremy Irons sang at it
Run over by Death’s chariot
Help me, help me, I’m all out of lies
And ways to say my brain died

 

<– Basically our brains while writing this. It was so much fun. (image from http://shigeako.tumblr.com/) Yep, so us…

12: Find Thyself!

This is one of the most fun assignments I’ve had in my English class, which is seriously saying something, because I find pretty much every single assignment to be very fun. 😀

The assignment was to Google your name and see what came up. Mwahahaha! It’s actually quite interesting…

I don’t exist on the Internet. XDXD At least, not on the first page of Google. I didn’t really fancy going all the way through to page 30 or 50 or however many pages there were to see if I could find myself later on. I tried all sorts of iterations of my name (nickname/last name, full first name/last name, first/middle/last name, nickname/initials/last name) and there was absolutely nothing that was me. Not even someone I’m related to! The most numerous hits were of an actress with the exact same name (the entire first page!!! You’d know who I meant if I said the name) and also of an author and poet who apparently has written popular books, but whom I’ve never heard of in my life.

So I suppose this means I’m doing rather well in keeping myself safe on the Internet? Who knows, but it was a lot of fun to do.

Why don’t you try?

Read and Google on!

The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel

This is a post about the six-book series “The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel” by Michael Scott. The first thing I must say is: read it. I’ll try my absolutely hardest not to spoil anything about the books, especially as some of my friends who read this haven’t read the last book yet, but I recommend it to everyone young and old who enjoys fantasy stories. Or stories in general.

The second thing I must say is that this series made me cry. Multiple tears, that actually ran down my face. I make a distinction because the last episode of the BBC show “Sherlock” made me cry one tear that sort of stuck, and Les Miserables (the movie that just came out) made me tear up. Messenger, by Lois Lowry, makes me cry about one or two tears also, but The Enchantress, which is the sixth book in the “Nicholas Flamel” series, made me cry at least five tears, which is pretty much a record for me for any book, movie, or TV series.

Michael Scott, the author, is apparently an authority in Ireland on mythologies and folk tales, and it comes through in his writing. All of his characters (except the two main characters and the island of Danu Talis) are directly from different mythologies, from ancient American tales to Celtic myths to the gods of Ancient Egypt. It takes place in modern times, so the characters have cell phones and fly in airplanes, but nearly all the characters are historical in some way, which pleased me no end when I first read them.

I could probably talk for hours about the series and everything that happened in the books, and particularly the things that made me cry in the last book, such as-no: spoilers. But I shan’t, as that would make for an incredibly long post, and probably an incredibly boring one for those of you who either haven’t read the books or have read them and didn’t find them interesting (which to me is unimaginable, but I’m sure there are people who don’t like them). And so I leave you for now the way I greeted you: read the “Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel” series by Michael Scott. I truly hope that you will enjoy them and feel them as much and as immensely as I did.

And til next time dears: Read on!

Complex, or Complicated?

Eric Berlow: Simplifying Complexity.

TED talks!

What words do we find cool?

Baguette!! (I love baguettes)

A picture of a lake! Water’s pretty. ^_^

Nature can be tied in to anything.

Prediction and black boxes…

Embrace complexity.

Node… (always sounds better in a funny voice.)

Simplicity lies on the other side of complexity.

David McCandless: Data Visualization

Patterns and beauty.

Design information to tell a story.

Data visualization can look cool!!

Beauty out of frustration. XD

Colors represent motivation.

Doosh. Best sound effect ever.

Data visualization creates a landscape.

Landscape of the world’s fears.

Find hidden patterns.

Retrospects.

Data is the new oil?

Data is the new soil. (then proceeds to a brilliant metaphor of information as soil. <3)

Trawled through Facebook statuses for the phrases “break up” and “broken up”… (Depressing work, much?)

Sensitive to ideas.

Experience instills a dormant design literacy.

The language of the eye and the language of the mind.

Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble. XDXD

We need figures connected to other data.

Let the data set change your mind set.

Balloon race!![diagram]

Efficacy. <3

The data is alive…

Society&Culture and Beliefs.

Recognizing things in yourself is really really uncomfortable.

You’re capable of holding conflicting beliefs joyously.

Provide elegant solutions.

Information is too interesting.

And that is beautiful. <3

Honors English Final Project Part 2

Part 2 of the Honors English project!!!

Now, I really should have posted this a couple days ago, but I’ve been so busy doing the actual project (imagine that) that I haven’t had time to post. But here’s a quick update:

I took a lot of pictures. Like seriously, a LOT of pictures. And I found out some interesting information while doing it. I’ve planned out what every page will be, even though I’ve only written 6 (YIKES!). I’m currently working on finding out background information and more pictures for the rest of the sections of the book.

COLOR EXPLOSIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just a bit, yeah.

My mom actually looked slightly scared when she saw the first couple pages of my book. “Is it supposed to be this colorful?” she asked. My response was an enthusiastic, slightly maniacal grin and nod. “It’s actually supposed to be slightly overwhelming for 4th graders.” I said. I feel so bad for the poor 4th grader that will pick up my notebook and be terrified by the sheer amount of color in the book… Also my rather atrocious handwriting, although I have been trying to make it look more or less legible. There’s one page where for half the page I wrote from the bottom up and the other half was from the top down. Poor, poor child that will have to suffer through this, but hey, it was fun!!!

(Like, a crazy amount of fun. Yikes. I should not be having this much fun while being so stressed. Yikes…)

Anyhoo, I’ll update you tomorrow as to what it looks like when it’s finished!

Read onwards!!!!!!!!! ^_^

10-minute Writing: Sir Ken Robinson: Bring on the Learning Revolution!

Yet another TED video, and yet another Sir Ken Robinson TED video! Hurrah!
This time, we are supposed to relate his “Bring on the learning revolution!” video to us and to our Honors English class. Hum…

This video took on a more serious tone than the first video of his that we watched. He was calling for reform of the education system, but not just reforming the old broken system: creating a whole new education system to help customize learning for all the different kinds of people that populate the world.

Customize education. What does this mean? Does the teacher have to speak to each child in turn, and give each child a different curriculum? Will there even be a curriculum any more? Will there even need to be a school system, or does homeschooling work better? (As a former homeschooled child, I’m sort of biased towards homeschooling. At times it was frustrating, but in truth, I loved it.)

So how does this idea of customizing education fit with this class? As you can probably tell if you’ve been reading any of the assignments for class on my blog, we’re doing quite a diverse set of assignments. In the Explorations project, we are allowed to choose our assignment based on a set of options and guidelines. Is this customized, because we choose what our four assignments will be, or is it still more “traditional” education, because we can choose only from the Explorations in that book? In our Murder project, we get to show our personalities. But in a traditional classroom, even writing a 5-paragraph essay, a bit of your personality can show through. So is showing personality customization, or something that happens no matter the circumstances?

I’m inclined to believe that this English class is very dynamic, organic, and customizable for the 15 of us students that are taking the class. I’m sure my teacher will be pleased by my saying that. But this class is so much like when I was homeschooled, I feel comfortable, at home, in familiar territory, and like I can express myself quite a lot within the loose and flexible guidelines that my teacher has set. It is indeed quite a wonderful class.

Off Gallivanting

Today in class we were ordered out of the room to go off gallivanting.

So off we went! Outside, to the cafeteria, no one really cared, so long as we had our laptops. Our quest? Write. About whatever we felt like, so long as it was pertinent to class.

The only problem? The wi-fi wasn’t really cooperating.

So I was unable to gallivant very far before my math class.

And because of that, my gallivanting is taking place, on my couch, in my house, more than 8 hours after class. Ah well. C’est la vie.

Our in-class quest has been varied and fun, talking about TV shows, books, essays, food, and, most importantly, the fun we’re having.

I cannot wait to continue our class of derring-do and discovery in the coming year! 😀