Andrew Kramer

Posted in Blogroll, Production on June 21, 2007 by ephisus

Andrew Kramer is a highly respected member of the Creative Cow community. People send him bushels of money for his marketed advice on the use of After Effects. He added a blog to his excellent website

Anyone serious about new media should keep read up on it.

Less than kin, more than kind, or something like this.

Posted in Sex on June 21, 2007 by ephisus

This man is exceptionally blunt, comes off as being close minded at times, and loves to phrase great ideas in ways that offend people to the core.

Also, these things are said about me on a regular basis.

While I don’t protest to his writing in the ways that many people who comment do (people, I think, that are not willing to examine their notions from the ground floor, one person suggests that his sarcasm and tongue-in-cheek and sometimes raunchy statments are the bones of his good ideas, that need to be spat out. Personally, I think the flavor is challenging and in-one’s-face in a lot of good ways), I do think that some of his thinking goes off the deep end from time to time. Don’t we all.

However,

I find myself agreeing whole heartedly with this particular post, though, being increasingly less estranged from structured church after decades of distance, I had not thought of this on my own, to my lasting shame.

I don’t think any woman alive will ever live up to your standards.

Posted in Loukusisms, Love on June 16, 2007 by ephisus

I got an anonymous tip-off this morning on my facebook honesty box application.  This is what it says:  Unadulterated.

I don’t think any woman alive will ever live up to your standards. It seems like you’ve built up a woman who doesn’t exist, and women can sense that. It might be what’s giving you so much trouble in this particular situation.

 This should not be misinterpreted as a scramble-to-defenses sort of writing regarding this.  It’s not likely that I would have a vehemont reaction to such a statement, being how that first sentance has been uttered, word for word, by several independent people in different social circles.  So, it bears examination.

There are two things that I think might be referred to as something that establishes my “standard”

 The first, and most likely, is my expectation of myself convince a woman to marry me without the aid of any serious physical involvement.  In the past five years of holding myself to this; I have met women that I believed would be capable of following through on a relationship with me, each one has fallen in turn to the test of time and other, less concerned, suitors.  Generally speaking, there are a substantial number of people who understand the expectation of celibacy, and the extension of that idea to kissing is a slight stretch for most, but not impossible.

The second, possibly, but not probably, is my willingness to highly compliment certain women with poetry.  Perhaps the idea that a statement complimenting a particular woman’s beauty, makes her feel inadequate, like it is an epitaph she cannot live up to; is what is being referred towards.  I think that’s silly, personally, unless the person commenting thinks me to be disingenuous or overtly charming for some alterior motive.  If I say such a thing to you, it’s because I like you.  It’s because you really are that beautiful.  I’ll digress, the first is far more likely.  One of my darkest hours entailed being told how wonderful the romance had been, in spite of it’s eventual failure– being simultaneous dashed and praised for my idealism.  I have never come across such serious evidence that what I seek is impossible, though at the moment, I was more occupied with the immediate consequences. 

I do not think that the romance is the problem on the surface; but a base matter of interest.  These women were not that interested in me, point blank.  That is a discomforting thought in and of itself, but the fulcrum here is that the impossibility of the matter lies in myself:  my ability to attract a woman to the extent that follow through will take place, opposed to the pursuit of other men, or percieved demerit in pursuing a relationship sans physicality. 

 I have been unable to do this, for whatever reason, not even in situations where the women have been statedly interested.  That is my male colored understanding of my situation, I do not understand what ‘standard’ I am holding women to, other than an expectation of comely love, enacted on with purity.  Those are each difficult, but the only way that I know how to live properly.  If ‘properly’ is too difficult, then I will do without; I despise the notion that failure is always inevitable.

We can do all things through Him.

Re: Kiss Her; it may be your last chance.

Posted in Loukusisms, Love on June 1, 2007 by ephisus

http://randomvandal.wordpress.com/2007/05/31/kiss-her/

I see a lot of people affirming what I take to be ridiculous notions about love and physicality.

I suppose that is nothing new.  Not in my personal life, and certainly not on the Internet, and more-so not in the world.  But, I’ll talk about something related.

It is my belief that it wasnt so long ago that I blew past such a last chance, and I only blinked once.  Without going into any detail, regardless of whatever other parties may say, I’m rather confident in the fact that my vow to not kiss, and my follow through of this, shot whatever chance I had in the foot, and it had been limping along for a year to the month.

My knowledge of other events surrounding this are scant, at the very, very, very best… but I do take it to understand that *most* people take this sort of “don’t think, just do” attitude when it comes to that first kiss.  It’s probably worth noting that my first kiss was such a thing.  She saw that conflict in me, even at that young age of 17, and said to me “You’re thinking too much”, she only got her next sentence half out before I went for it.  I don’t even remember what she was saying.  So…. that very much happened before I became very affirmed in my beliefs and ideas about life, and I have come to regret what is very standard fare for most.  Regardless of else that may be said of me, I am strange in this regard.

Because of that strangeness, it is hard to put to words, the pain, to someone outside of my frame of reference, that is caused by the knowledge that other men have been willing to act uncaringly, unthinkingly, in this way, and enter into this kind of muddlement that the given person, be it me, or some other suitor, fought against within themselves, out of concern for the purity and health of the would-be relationship.

 Addendum, rather…  That pain is caused by the knowledge that this confusing, psuedo-state, uncaring, unthinking…….. -immoral-… action, is the very thing that draws her away from you with a quiet, contemplative disposition and a few tears. 

I chided someone, once, for thinking too much about the nature of our relationship.  That was stupid.  My attitude now is that any such person should be told to go and think and pray long and hard….. But I said otherwise then, because I understood innately… that abandoning thought and reason in this kind, on my upshot, was the surest way that she would stay, though I was not willing to cement that grey to us manually by kissing her.  But I did so want her to stay.

And that ‘staying power’ is the power of the physical relationship, and men often wield it like a club, not a rapier.

But, this appears to be how both men and women prefer to live, nowadays.  I’ll none of it.  It hath made me mad.

Pirates of the Carribean 3

Posted in Film Review on May 30, 2007 by ephisus

It’s probably worth noting that most of the pirates in pirates 3 are not, in fact, from the Caribbean, but from all over the world. That was one of the things that promised so much in the latest epic pirate film from Disney. Okay, I’ll stop sounding like a professional critic now. They’re mostly windbags.

So, I had high hopes for Pirates 3 to be the best in the series yet. A few reasons.

– The leap forward in character animation with Davey Jones was incredible in Pirates 2. I was excited at the prospect of seeing that wonderful quality translated into the scenes with Jones that would no doubt promise higher action, and drama. He is, without a doubt, the best thing in the franchise, on account of his excellent effects, and moving backstory of unrequited, cursed, love, with a retention of his sense of duty and loyalty.

– Keira Knightley.

Hah, Im just kidding. But it seems like so many men say that. I don’t even know why. There are women I could call if I just wanted to have an evening with an attractive woman, and its not only possible, but highly probable that I would exchange more words and smiles with said women, than went between Keira and I the night I saw Pirates 3.

Really, guys. Social Commentary, over.

– the trailers promised a fresh look for the film. The earth-tones and greenish blues that were so prevalent in the first film were not as present in the second, replaced by darks and cold, wet blues, and the final chapter was heading towards greys. High contrast smokey deep greys. That had me interested, certainly.

– With the antagonist from the first film now playing on the side of good… uh.. good…ish, a very calm and capable villian from the second, and killer awesome henchmen, and increasingly ambiguous loyalties and love triangles on the better side… well, there is plenty of room for good writing there.

So. The Supper was terrible.

I’m not going to say flat out “the writing sucked” or something like this. As a whole, the Pirates Franchise is not known for its witty writing. It is known for consistently portraying the events, characters, and motivations that are present, with an entertaining shell.

Which is where 3 fails. Instead of portraying events, the progression of the film is arm-twisted into gags and gimmicks.

Avert your eyes if you wish to avoid spoilers.

So, Elizabeth is on a ship…. uh.. let’s make her the captain, so that she’s more capable and a stronger female character. Why on earth would the captain name her the successor? Uh….. I dunno. Let’s make him senile and think that she is calypso, the sea goddess.

So, for the sake of watering elizabeth’s character down into a strong-female gimmick, we’ve made one of the major characters loco-insane.

Another example:

Towards the end, there are is a multitude of interesting elements, and a broad range of wonderful visuals. The pirate lords from all over the world! A huge fleet of ships under Beckett, prepared to destroy them! A SEA GODDESS HAS BEEN RELEASED AFTER HUNDREDS OF YEARS. A MALSTORM IS TAKING DOMINANCE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BATTLEFIELD!!! CURSED PIRATES ARE BOARDING OUR HEROES’ SHIP!

So, what do we devote screen time to? A wedding gag, and shooting a monkey out of a canon for no reason.

Nevermind that the characters stopped speaking romantically half a movie ago
Nevermind that it detracts from the gravity of the scenario,
Nevermind that its been done a million times.

It’s boring. Its really friggin boring.

I can just hear the execs discussing the Jack Sparrow insanity scenes.

“Well, Johnny Depp is what makes these movies good… let’s put johnny depp on the screen as much as is possible.”

So, Verbinski probably suggests clone shots, and doing this insanity thing with him, and it doesn’t get integrated properly. Its just chopped up and thrown into the pot and served to us raw, unrefined,… a hodgepodge of not-well-thought-out ideas.

Bottom line, is that the filmmakers abandoned selling the story, which is supposed to be happening constantly in a film, with no breaks whatsoever…. and tried to replicate the effective situational humor from the previous films.

And it wound up sucking. Save your money.

On Fires and Flags and Freedom

Posted in Politics on May 30, 2007 by ephisus

I was blindsided the other day by my roommates’ idealogies.

I shall describe the scene.  M loads up a video on some underground media site, as he is oft wont to do.  Ja and M watch video.  I’m working on migrating film stuff to my new laptop, because it’s been more stable than my desktop system.

 So, in this video, there’s some stoners burning an American for no good reason, and the one that talks slow and loud and rolls his’ L’s is talking about how great it is that they are burning a flag.  ‘Burn America’ 

And this sort of thing.

The idiots aren’t really doing it publically, and it’s no where near as dramatic as it needs to be if they are actually trying to make a statement.

So, total idiots.  No big deal.

M starts talking about how this should be illegal.  Ja agrees.

I think that I missed something, somewhere along the line, where we held up symbols above ideas.  It doesn’t matter that the American flag stands for Freedom this afternoon.  It doesn’t matter that I’m basically good with the current administration.  It doesn’t matter that the people in the video have no backing for thier ideas.  We don’t imprison people for free assembly and symbolic protest.  We don’t fine them.  We don’t even tax them, and those ideas have left a bad taste in our mouth since the sedition acts were repealed over two hundred years ago.

I can think of a hundred reasons off the cuff- why I might want to burn an American flag in the abstact-tomorrow…. But, never mind all that- I don’t feel the need to suggest why it might need to happen at my hands…

Because-

We have a constitutional right to assembly and speech, and there is something inherently wrong with a government seeing to its own surety against defamation with the use of legal action against its citizens, regardless of how right or wrong or justified or unjustified the perpetrators are.

The appropriate thing to do is to combat these ideas in the social realm, with other ideas.

Cuius regio, Eius religio

Posted in Loukusisms, Love, Sex on May 23, 2007 by ephisus

  I think I’m beginning to narrow down my problem with some of the status quo a little more.  Just the problem, not a practical solution, other than waiting on the Lord.

  See, Joel Loukus is a huge idealist.  He persists in quixotic notions about Life.  He values truth and morality, honor, love, respect for life, and wisdom above his own happiness, and tries to carry this idea to it’s ultimate conclusion in all that he does.

So, of the three objectives:  Pursuing God, propogating an Family, and making cool movies, I’ll unabashedly claim that numbers one and three are pretty well in the works.  Number Two is sticky, at best.

 I value monogamous love, it’s expression in sex, and the institution of marriage at such a staggering importance, that I have taken this vow to not Kiss until marriage.

  Here’s the main rub.  More than a few women have exclaimed at how wonderful this is.  The words echo, “Any woman would be lucky”.  In time- on average of about a year- most of these women have opted to *not* be the lucky girl, and have gone for men with far less idealism.  In fact, most of them have gone off with men with no idealism. 

 Agnostics.

Or, in other words, Men that are inherently unable to commit to real ideas.  Maybe that’s harsh.  I am not sorry, neither.

 The reason that this is so offensive to me, is that I have held out this romantic, idealistic, pure love to women, and I have been spurned in favor of men with worldviews that, when pressed, would force them to admit that thier actions– all those sweet kisses on the forehead, or quiet tea parties, or sweet nothings whispered– are simply biological, and that monogamy is a joke, and that the only finality in the universe is chaos and death.  That men and women(or whichever) embrace each other temporarily, worshiping the physical comfort of thier biology.

And it is truly, absolutely, offensive to have that chosen over what I will describe as real love. 

 It is, without a doubt, the most offensive thing that happens to me.  And it happens- basically- every year.