Hudson Taylor!

I’m going to see Hudson Taylor today! I am also going to see Hudson Taylor by myself. That’s a little bit stressful, but it is all right. I am on the train right now so that I can get in line so that I can get a really good spot so that I can take in as much Hudson Taylor as humanly possible.

I really want it to be good. I really want them to play old stuff, like Drop of Smoke. I know that they are a new fancy Irish band with a label and a band but I want to get to hear Hudson Taylor like I heard Hudson Taylor on a CD from Crowley four and a half years ago. I really truly hope that it will be so good. And that maybe I get to meet Harry and Alfie. That would be cool. But mostly I just hope that I will not be anxious and that I will be happy and that it will be good.

76°

Today it was so warm that I wore shorts and a t-shirt. And when I went outside it was hot. We laid out in the sun and ate strawberries and listened to music and it was the nicest my body has felt in a while. It was incredible.

28459972_1568269436622754_662659715_o.jpg

It was also a little bit terrifying. It is February. Tomorrow it will go back to being 45° and overcast and rainy. And it will be that way for at least the next month. But today felt like a miracle— I don’t know if I’ve seen so many students out on the lawn since I got to school. Everyone was smiling and playing and listening to music and you could just feel the mood shift of the entire campus. There was guitar playing and hammocks and frisbees and it was so good.

I cannot wait for the spring. I want every day to be able to be like this. I want the sun to be out and the winter to be over and to make time for my self outside every day. I am ready.

They Are the Egg Men

I have been on two major Beatles kicks in my life. My first was around age eleven, when my parents realized that I had exactly zero Beatles education. I think I knew Yellow Submarine. But maybe only the parts about submarines and trampolines and jelly beans that you learn on the playground. When they realized that I knew virtually nothing, someone went downstairs and pulled out “1”, a compilation of Beatles songs that make it to #1 on the charts. I was hooked right away. We spent about a month dancing to the Beatles in the kitchen as it was played from the old silver speaker that sat where the breadbox is now. I learned almost every song on that CD by heart (although not the first few and last few, cause David Thompson thinks those Beatles eras are too cheesy.) For Christmas that year, we got Beatles Rockband, and so continued my love for the band. And for the wii. And for Rockband guitar. It was a good Christmas, and I’m happy every time we dig out Rockband even to this day (and everyone in our house can tell you that Beatles Rockband will always be the best.)

My second Beatles kick was this summer. I’m not really sure how it started, but this time, I was very focused on the early Beatles. Screw what David Thompson said about it, I liked cheese! I broadened my horizons in terms of hits, and found stuff I’d never really listened too before that I loved. I listened to the Beatles almost every day in the car this summer, likely to my passengers despair (although who doesn’t like at least some Beatles.) It was great. Towards the end of the summer, I began to ask everyone I knew what their top five favorite Beatles songs were, and I loved hearing each of their answers. Similarly to my question about songs under two minutes, though, I couldn’t answer the question I had posed. Right before I left, mom and dad and I sat down and agreed to listened to one minute of every Beatles song in order to find each of our favorites. We didn’t really get around to it, but the thought has been in my brain ever since. Last night and today I looked again at (though did not listen to) every Beatles song, and made a list. And a smaller list. And a smaller list, and now I have my top five. I’m sure that this will change during my life, but for right now, I have them. I also have second place songs. And third place songs. And honorable mention songs. We’re going to start with those.

Quinland’s Favorite Beatles Songs:

All songs are ordered by release.

Honorable Mention:

Do You Want To Know a Secret
Twist and Shout
It Won’t Be Long
Can’t Buy Me Love
I Feel Fine
I’ll Follow the Sun
Drive My Car
Norwegian Wood
Elanor Rigby
Good Day Sunshine
And Your Bird Can Sing
Got To Get You Into My Life
Srgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band/ With a Little Help From My Friends
When I’m 64
I Am The Walrus
Baby You’re a Rich Man
Back in the USSR
Dear Prudence
Blackbird
Hey Bulldog

Third Place:

Eight Days a Week
In My Life
Revolution

Second Place:

All My Loving
I Want to Hold Your Hand
Help!
Paperback Writer

Top Five Beatles Songs:

I Saw Her Standing There
I’ve Just Seen a Face
We Can Work It Out
Penny Lane
Ob-Li-Di Ob-La-Da

After I found all of these songs, I decided I wanted to do a little more analysis of my findings.

The first thing I looked at was the writer of each song. Of the 32 songs I picked:

1 was written by an outside artists

9 were written by Lennon

5 were written by Lennon and McCartney

17 were written by McCartney

None of my top 5 were written by only Lennon (4 McCartney, 1 together)

While there is some online argument about the phases of the Beatles, only article I found broke the Beatles down into four distinct phases: Early Pop Beatles (Please Please Me, With The Beatles/Meet The Beatles, A Hard Days Night); Transition Beatles (Beatles For Sale, Help!, Rubber Soul); Psychedelic Beatles (Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Magical Mystery Tour); Back To Basics Beatles (The White Album, Abbey Road, Let It Be). My songs fell into the following categories:

5 in Early Pop Beatles

12 in Transition Bealtes

9 in Psychedelic Beatles

6 in Back To Basics Beatles

I am sleepy and running out of steam on this post, but I will maybe come back to it later. Mostly I’m just excited bout my choice of songs, without the use of a bracket!

Covers!

Parker wrote about one of my favorite covers in the world today, so I am going to list some of my other favorite covers.

The Presidents of The United States of America covering The Buggles

They Might Be Giants covering Cub

Iron and Wine covering New Order

CHVRCHES covering Arctic Monkeys

The Lumineers covering Talking Heads

The Cheiftans and Decemberists covering Bob Dylan

Gavin James covering The Magnetic Fields (even though I don’t like when he ooohs)

Cake covering Gloria Gaynor

Cake covering Willie Nelson

I think there are more but I don’t know what they are yet. In the mean time, you should listen to these and tell me what your favorites are!

11:29pm

I have been putting off writing all day. Every time I thought about writing this post today, which was at least seven times, I felt tired. Times like these make me wonder why I am writing this. Because it’s a competition? Because I like it? Because even though it’s only been a few weeks it feels like something I can sustain and I always have trouble following through with things? I’m not really sure. It all kind of blends together when I’m having trouble figuring out what to write about.

I am bad at following through. I am very good at pipe dreams and thinking I will stick to plans. But I am bad at doing. I have never been able to go to them gym or get regular exercise, because once I don’t do it once, it stops be from ever being motivated to do it again. I am bad at making plans because I worry that I will not be able to follow through. The only reason I went to every acting class last semester was because I was scared of the teacher. I live in a state of never being able to self motivate to do the things I know I need to. When I have a “healthy” amount of stress about things, my own dread of needing do them puts me into denial about whether or not they’re important and whether or not I care about what not doing them means to me. I am this way about exercise. And eating healthy food. And brushing my teeth. The stress that truly drives me to do things has passed right through stress (healthy or not) and into anxiety. Mostly anxiety that I will be in trouble if I don’t do certain things. When I realized that not doing my work didn’t have immediate repercussions, I stopped doing work in AP Lang altogether. I am often driven by fear or not at all.

Sometimes, I don’t even begin things. I can’t tell you the number of projects that I have not started because I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to finish them.

The summer of 2016, I started writing everyday. I wrote poems, and wrote down my thoughts and doodles and things I thought about and questions I had during the day that I wanted to ask Isabel, and I did all of this because writing was important to her. Her outlet became my outlet, and so I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote. When she ended things with me, I was determined to keep writing. This was something that was not just her, but also me. I could write for myself and by myself and it could be good. And as much as that was true, I stopped writing when I got over her. Sometimes I worry that I tie my habits too much to other people. Why do I depend on other people to push me to do things ?

I don’t like to talk about the things that I have trouble doing. I don’t like to talk to the dentist about why I have trouble doing something everyone else in America can do. I don’t like to talk to my mom about why my grades are lower than they should be or about how we should make a plan to exercise together. I don’t like to talk about why I wait so long to start my homework when I’ve been thinking about it all day. Or why my room looks like such a mess when I haven’t had any reason not to stand up and clean it. I do not like to be reminded of the things that I know I have trouble with, because then I feel bad for having not yet fixed them. I do not like to face my flaws. I know that all these conversations come from a place or constructiveness and caring, but I push these conversations away as quick as possible so that I can keep telling myself that my trouble doing things is not a problem. I’m not totally sure how true that is, but it is what I say.

I am glad to not have trouble motivating myself to do the things that I know I enjoy. I love to play music and so when I have time, I do. I spend time outside when I can and appreciate it even if it is just a walk from one building on campus to another. I like to make art and play games, so I make plans with my friends to do that. And there are some healthy habits that I can sustain, which I am proud of. I drink a lot of water. I go to rehearsal and class and my lighting job whenever I am called, even when I don’t want to. I do my laundry before it’s too gross, and I take out my trash before things smell bad. I do my homework. And every day, for the last eighteen days, I have written on this blog.

Snow

It’s snowing so much right now. I had in rehearsal for 6 hours and it was clear outside when I went in and when I went outside I just stood and stared. It’s snowing so hard and the ground is reflecting into the clouds and the streetlights make campus look like this soft orange and white world. It’s only like 30° which feels warm and I could just be in the snow forever. It’s cozy to sit inside while it’s snowing out but I’m also excited to play in the snow and walk in the snow and be in the snow.

I started watching The Office

I started watching the office and I mostly love it. Michael stresses me out (cause of how he lives his life with hit foot only in his mouth. It’s a wonder he gets anywhere at all.) but every other character is so ridiculous and so personable and so good. Mostly Jim and Pam. I love Pam. And Jim. And Pam and Jim. It’s kinda ridiculous how in love you can tell they are all the time. Even when they’re not together, their love makes me happy, and every time they’re sad for each other it makes me sad. I don’t know why, but they feel the most meant to be of any couple I’ve ever seen on TV. I think it’s important that they’re such good friends. I feel like on TV, even when relationships begin with two people as friends, you never really feel like they’re real friends. Jim and Pam are real friends. I think about them a lot. He’s so supportive of everything she wants so do and be and she loves him even though he’s such a goofy, ridiculous person and doesn’t always know what to do with himself. I just feel like no TV couple is every gonna seem as perfect for each other as they seem.

Days

Today I had a slow day. Tomorrow I will have a fast day. Today’s slow day was the tiring slow. Tomorrow’s fast will be the tiring fast. I want the slow days where you don’t have anything to do and you take the day one step at a time and you know you can do things but you don’t have to. I want the fast days where you wake up early to do something you’ve been dying to do and there’s good thing after good thing after good thing and even though you’re tired you don’t want it to end.

The weekends never feel long enough here. Friday is for staying up and Saturday is for rehearsal and starting homework and Saturday night is for staying in and Sunday is for finishing homework. Every weekday is for preparing for the next weekday. The days are long but the weeks are short. I feel like I need to sleep for a long time.

The break was long but went by so fast. There were the good slow days and the good fast days. I am excited for the summer. I need the days with work I love that leave me with energy for the things I love afterwards. I need days to be long and nights to be warm and waking up at 7:20 to be exciting and happy. I need late night pancakes and Winco runs and falling asleep to be instant.

I miss home. It is hard to be here for so long. It’s like being on a vacation that lasts too long. I am so lucky to have some many amazing people and such and amazing home and city but it makes being her for such long stretches so much harder. I will be glad to be home for the summer, for so many weeks.

Quinland Thompson is a Nerd

The other day I was listening to my Songs Under Two Minutes set, and I asked Parker to name her top five songs under two minutes, thinking that I would then easily be able to respond with mine. While she could list hers after a little bit of thought (Pigs in the Green Room, Eat You Alive, Better Not Wake The Baby, Flowers in Your Hair, Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want; in no particular order,) I looked at the playlist again and was completely stumped. Because of who I am as a person, my very next thought was to make a bracket.

I have always taken brackets very seriously. I named teams for my first March Madness bracket before I really even knew what states were, and they have always seemed like the best, most organized way to decide what things I like more that other things. Big decisions are hard for me. Little, either/or decisions? Not so much. In this blog post, I have decided to walk you through my bracketing technique.

I usually used this bracket site for all my bracketing needs since it has the most options for different kinds of brackets (seeded/non-seeded etc.) and has brackets available for any number of “teams”, even super weird numbers. Amazingly, the set happens to have 32 songs, which is a really convenient number for a single-elimination bracket.

Untitled

Even though I don’t have true rankings for all of the songs (if I did I wouldn’t need to use a bracket), I like to choose seeded brackets as opposed to unseeded. This way, I can split the songs into a number of groups (for this I’m going to use four) that are racked a certain way. This will stop two songs that I really really love getting pitted against each other right at the beginning, and the songs that are in the highest ranked category will hopefully be the ones that move farther. To set the seeding, I pull all the names into a word doc,

Untitled

and I highlight each song with a color corresponding to the category. In this case, green is what I consider to be the top songs, then yellow, orange, red. It doesn’t matter so much if the categories are equal, but I like to have them be as even as possible so I get the most favorable results.

Untitled.jpg

Then, I take each group into a list randomizer,

Untitledwouedhf

and place them back in the doc as a numbered order. You’ll notice that Velocity Girl wasn’t on the last list, but luckily it was going to go in the last group anyway.

wouedhf.jpg

Now, to the bracket! Everything goes in according to it’s number:

wouedhf

And you eliminate!

wouedhf

My number one is Eat You Alive (which I a little bit expected— this bracket was more about numbers 2-5 for me), with Pigs in The Green Room coming is second, then Cats & Dogs and Dearest coming in at third and fourth (this was not determined by the bracket, but by me, right now). My fifth would probably have to be Better Not Wake The Baby, although Dance Music is going to get an honorable mention for having stolen my heart from the first time I heard it a few weeks ago.

Well there you go! My method may be effective, but if you’re looking for efficiency, you might want to care less than I do about whether or not a make the right decisions about arbitrary things.

Ugh

I’m so sick. So sick. My neck feels like it can’t hold up my head, my throat is so sore and I’ve only eaten a bagel today. I’m congested, and even laying in bed is uncomfortable. I’m hungry but I don’t want to eat or move. I need to drink water but I can’t get up to fill my water bottle. All I want to do is sleep, but it’s hard to sleep cause everything hurts. I am sad and grumpy and tired. Being sick by yourself isn’t fun.