This week was mostly good. It’s hard to say that during the pandemic (to care about your own well-being seems so very selfish). But the daily exercise is helping me concentrate and be a bit more upbeat. Although…the weigh in was certainly disappointing. I know I shouldn’t expect too much in the first week but I’ve been absurdly strict with diet and exercise; I’ve been throwing all my frustration into back-breaking 90 minute workouts everyday and eating nothing but eggs and chicken with rice. I wonder if I’m heavier because I’m gaining a bunch of pure, raw, unstoppable muscle? Yeah, it’s probably that.
Perhaps weighing myself weekly is a bad idea for morale though.
My body hasn’t visibly changed much yet but my legs are completely wild. “Muscles are supposed to be here!?” I said out loud the other day to myself in my entirely empty apartment like a very normal person. Regardless, as slow as progress is, it’s good training for my patience and discipline. To work on a really long project for months and months whilst cooped up here, I mean.
1% better everyday, etc.
I’m watching people workout on TikTok and it helps seeing so many people fight against this thing in their own way. My favorite part of going to the gym was watching folks push themselves to the very brink of what they’re capable of. And then coming back the next day to do it again. And again. Relentlessly. And so watching TikTok workouts feel like that.
Still, I always prefer the videos (TikToks? Toks? Tikkies?) that are like “this is what I’m doing” instead of “here’s how to do XYZ” And I think it’s because 1. Everyone wants to be an expert which is really annoying and 2. Fucking up and experimenting in public makes us all so vulnerable.
And there’s a form of kindness in being vulnerable, I guess.
I could watch Chris tinker around and build stuff all day long. I always admire the way that he confronts a roadblock — a thingy not working, a doodad failing for reasons — he just plows straight through it until whatever it is ends up working again. I love that so very much.
To make the Hyperbolic Time Chamber image above I used a service that removes the background of an image called remove.bg. It’s really impressive, although I do wish that it was built right into Figma. There is a Figma plugin that lets you hit the remove.bg API but after faffing about with it for a little while I couldn’t seem to get it all working. Not sure what I’m doing wrong here. Hmmmm.
They do have a desktop app though, which is great.
I’m sat in my kitchen with Ali right now. It’s raining outside and I’m listening to this stream of Four Tet. It’s also very good.
I’m not a fan of war films for the most part but the other night I watched 1917 for the first time and damn I loved every second of it. There’s a certain distance the film takes away from the conflict, as if you’re a tourist walking through the battlefield and only seeing the aftermath, and that somehow makes everything so much more horrifying.
Tonight we’re watching Paddington.
For reasons beyond my understanding I bought the remastered versions of Modern Warfare 1 + 2 this weekend and played straight through both of them. They’re dumb, but impressively so. Like a Fast and the Furious movie where so much time has been spent making the dumbest and sometimes most joyous and un-self-conscious thing imaginable.
Everyone sees MW1/2 and thinks that they’re just first person shooters though. But that’s dead wrong! The whole time I played them this weekend and I was like…aahhhh…yes…these are horror games! They have all the pacing of an old horror film; slow, creeping steps through a house with night vision goggles, a paranoid walk across icy forests — and then, blammo! Big dumb action stuff breaks all the tension. Sometimes exquisitely so.
Anyway, I think the reason why the campaign of the most recent one is so disappointing is because they misunderstood this bit; the fact that it’s a horror series, and not just a shooter.
I didn’t even know who Neil Gaiman was until about a week ago when I began his Norse Mythology collection (which I’d recommend in an instant). And I know this is probably like talking about The Wire or something considering how popular he is, but this week I started reading Neverwhere and I already adore it. It also begins with one of my favorite opening sentences of any book:
The night before he went to London, Richard Mayhew was not enjoying himself.
There’s something so very P.G. Wodehouse about it; the fumbling bumbling charm to it is present here already. I know where it’s going, I get a good sense of the tone of this thing, and I know there’s going to be a lovable goofball somewhere in this novel. All I have to do is find them.
Behold! My newsletter—sent infrequently—about new things that I’m working on. Every so often it’ll contain notes about web design and publishing things that I’m interested in, too.