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Topics - rushingwind

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1
General Discussion / Important Differences
« on: July 28, 2018, 03:25:21 am »
I've had the great fortune to really explore and improve upon my musicianship these last few years. I've gotten great at the piano and guitar, and I'm an opera singer! It's been so amazing to pursue those dreams which once seemed so impossible that I never honestly allowed myself to consider pursuing them... until they nearly fell in my lap (I mean, I've been working hard at it, but the opportunity had to fall in my lap, I mean!).

So, I thought for this year's Dream Splash I'd create this awesome piece of music, complete with those epic female vocals you hear in other dramatic music! After all, I can play the instruments, and I can sing, so why not?

Problem is... I am not a composer. I can do great covers, but it's hard for me to musically "think outside of the box" without sheet music to guide me.

So, I've learned that being a good musician is not the same as having good musicianship. But! The Dream of Zeal will continue to drive me forwards to learn new things!

Just thought I'd share that with you guys. :)

2
Site Updates / When Cease and Desist Letters Backfire
« on: December 28, 2013, 02:53:08 pm »
Square Enix isn't the only company out there that likes to fire off Cease and Desist letters every time it thinks someone might even be looking its way with a fan or derivative work. The Arthur Conan Doyle Estate just learned that bullying creators into paying up fees or abandoning their projects is actually kind of a bad idea because eventually, you know, someone's going to get pissed off and fight back and sue them (and win):

http://free-sherlock.com/

The ACD Estate's careless actions of the past will cost them huge money now. Even big Hollywood producers have an excuse to sidestep them and not pay to use their classic characters.

This situation is obviously different than the CE issue that happened here. But still, it warms my heart to the core to know that a greedy organization sent out a heavy-handed C&D letter to try and intimidate what they thought was some small-time creator, and then it blew up in their faces most magnificently.

3
Welcome / Birthday / Seeya! Forum / The Mighty Rushing Wind turns 28!
« on: June 08, 2012, 02:00:47 am »
Whoosh! I'm the wind!

Or rather, I'm getting blown all around by it out here in the Midwest of the United States! I'm enjoying my time as an undergrad physics researcher, and I'm off to see new nature sites later today (gotta keep the geology nerd within me satisfied, after all!).

It's a great day, a great birthday, and I hope everyone else on the Compendium is doing great! :)

4
Submissions / Flute Remakes
« on: July 05, 2011, 09:11:56 am »
During a transfer of some music files between an old hard drive and my laptop several months ago, I rediscovered an old piece of music I'd been working on when I was in the 10th grade in high school. This was... oh... twelve years ago? I arranged the Manoria Cathedral song and Schala's Theme for a flute choir, using Finale to write the sheet music.

In my enthusiasm, I tried desperately to record myself playing all the parts and to put them all together, with only Windows Sound Recorder and a metronome to guide me. I eventually became so flustered with trying to get all the parts to line up perfectly that I gave up. If only I still had the sheet music, I could possibly resurrect it! I recorded each track, and then to get all the tracks together, I had to play the last recorded version in Windows Media Player, play it and then record with Windows Sound Recorder with me playing another track along with the older piece playing in Windows Media Player. If it sounds frustrating/confusing, that's because it was. It was mind-numbingly slow, and I remember how infuriating it became. Days. I spent days recording these tracks over and over again (not including the time it took me to arrange it all and write out the sheet music). But I was so determined at the time! Oh, if only I'd had Audacity at the time it would have been so simple...

I had never intended to share it with other people, and then somehow this track ended up saved in an old folder with the name "Harmony2." I couldn't remember for the life of me what it was, but when I listened to it... Oh man, nostalgia! And now, you can listen to the semi-complete version of it here. I split it into two different files, one for the Manoria Cathedral track and the other for Schala's Theme, as my unfinished flute choir recording left a lot of quiet space in between the two.

Three (maybe four) parts are missing to the Manoria Cathedral theme, and the different parts don't always line up perfectly (I remember spending hours agonizing over adding or taking away half a second, just to try and make it all line up). The intro to Manoria Cathedral sounds incomplete, but I don't remember what I'd had in mind. Also, the middle of the Cathedral song is... strange. Again, I have no memory of what I'd intended to do. Schala's Theme is by far the more complete of the two, lacking one (possibly two) parts.

I don't think I'll ever get around to finishing these since my self-arranged sheet music is MIA, so I'll release them to the community. It was truly a labor of love for beautiful music that had enchanted me. I had never intended to share this at the time, but now, maybe someone will enjoy listening to one of them! Behold, 15-year-old RW's musical work! :)

I couldn't attach the file to this post for some reason (probably the file is too large), so I uploaded it to Rapidshare instead.

https://rapidshare.com/files/2573733733/fluteChoir.zip

5
Chrono Compendium Discussion / Compendium's Encyclopedia Plagiarized?
« on: June 23, 2011, 03:45:08 pm »
Out of curiosity, I started browsing around the Chrono Wikia/Chronopedia, and noticed that it seemed like I'd read a lot of the stuff before. For example:

Quote from: Chrono Wikia
Kid (キッド, Kiddo) is a swashbuckling, gritty thief with a penchant for radical action...

Quote from: Chrono Compendium
Kid, the swashbuckling, gritty thief with a penchant for radical action...

And...

Quote from: Chrono Wikia
Kid was born in 1004 A.D., when Schala, bound to the Time Devourer, feared her mind would become increasingly consumed by hatred and created a clone of herself. She gave the baby her Pendant and sent her to the modern world; there, she was found by Lucca and subsequently adopted.

Quote from: Chrono Compendium
Kid was born in 1004 A.D., when Schala, bound to the Time Devourer, feared her mind would become increasingly consumed by hatred and created a clone of herself. She gave the baby her Pendant and sent her to the modern world; there, she was found by Lucca and subsequently adopted.

How about one more for good measure?

Quote from: Chrono Wikia
Serge's existence is a contradiction between the dimensions the basis for much of the philosophical discourse in Chrono Cross. Born to Marge and Wazuki of the fishing village of Arni in the El Nido Archipelago, Serge had a storied history with the world since before he knew how to write. At the tender age of three years old, he came into contact with the Frozen Flame as a result of his father Wazuki's desperation to heal his son after he had been mauled by a panther demon. The contact healed him and designated him as its Arbiter, or controller; this caused the Frozen Flame to be unusable by the supercomputer FATE due to the Prometheus Circuit. Due to its obviously advanced technology, it had no problem binding both Miguel, a friend of Serge's father, and eventually Wazuki himself into cruel servitude. For the time being, however, Serge escaped unharmed with Wazuki, who was only mildly corrupted by the computer. Back in Arni, Serge became good friends with Leena, Miguel's daughter, and the other inhabitants of the village, who took interest in watching him grow. Forces beyond his control would soon threaten his life again, however.

Quote from: Chrono Compendium
Serge's existence is a contradiction between the dimensions the basis for much of the philosophical discourse in Chrono Cross. Born to Marge and Wazuki of the fishing village of Arni in the El Nido Archipelago, Serge had a storied history with the world since before he knew how to write. At the tender age of three years old, he came into contact with the Frozen Flame as a result of his father Wazuki's desperation to heal his son after he had been mauled by a panther demon. The contact healed him and designated him as its Arbiter, or controller; this caused the Frozen Flame to be unusable by the supercomputer FATE due to the Prometheus Circuit. Due to its obviously advanced technology, it had no problem binding both Miguel, a friend of Serge's father, and eventually Wazuki himself into cruel servitude. For the time being, however, Serge escaped unharmed with Wazuki, who was only mildly corrupted by the computer. Back in Arni, Serge became good friends with Leena, Miguel's daughter, and the other inhabitants of the village, who took interest in watching him grow. Forces beyond his control would soon threaten his life again, however.

Huh.

So, isn't this blatant plagiarism? This is just one example. Much of the Chronopedia site appears to have cannibalized the Compendium's encyclopedia. It makes me angry, knowing how hard people here worked to write these articles, and then to see them stolen like this. I watched so many of these articles evolve over the years. People worked their tails off on this stuff. And the Chronopedia/Chrono Wikia doesn't even give a shred of credit, aside from a link in a "Links and Affiliates" section.

Wikia's Terms of Use say, "You may not submit content to the Service that you did not create or that you not have permission to submit." And they have contact information for copyright infringement on their Terms of Use page. Unless ZeaLitY or someone else high up created the Chrono Wikia, I don't see how they can get away with this. If they want to go through the trouble of making a Chrono Wiki, they need to come up with their own content, and not steal the Compendium's.

6
Welcome / Birthday / Seeya! Forum / The Wind Howls...
« on: June 08, 2011, 04:52:00 pm »
...and she turns 27 today. Wow!

I am in a beautiful place (truly, more fitting of the description of "middle of nowhere" than many other places I've been lately), I've had the pleasure of meeting with several good friends lately across the Midwestern states, and I'm feeling physically better than I have in a while. I've always had to work on my birthday, but not today!

I believe I will celebrate by mailing out some postcards and taking a drive through the mountains. Usually I hate my birthday, but I feel pretty good about it today. :)

7
General Discussion / Modern Day Fairy Tales
« on: May 17, 2011, 02:42:22 am »
Quote
"You mean only some of us can hear it?"

"Only some of us are listening."

What makes a story more than just a story?

In many ways a lot of modern media, such as movies or TV shows, try to be more than "just" a show. A lot of different examples are out and about, such as this website itself, for example. We like Chrono Trigger, or we wouldn't be here, right? To us, the ones that stay and continue to love the Chrono games, there is something deeper there. Perhaps we think of it as a modern fairy tale. Perhaps we just think it's cool. Maybe we liked Zeal, or Crono, or any number of things from the game.

I worked in the movie business for eight years, five of which I spent working at a movie theater. In the earlier days I had to personally watch and inspect every movie and every preview. God, was that not fun. If you put all workplace drama aside and focused on that alone, that made the job a royal pain. Why? Because most movies suck. They are hastily cobbled together or they're all carbon copies with new names and new actors. "Oh, it's another chick flick. Oh look, it's another fantasy movie. Oh look, another scary movie." When you have to watch countless new movies each week just to make sure the reels are free of defects and that all the previews have been spliced together with the main film correctly, it becomes a chore. You begin to see how repetitive and boring Hollywood really is.

There are a few exceptions. Some studios, like Pixar, are known for their tendency to work on story first and pretty graphics later. Their movies are labors of love four years or more in the making, and with that kind of time, it shows in the final product. For the most part, though, it seems a lot of movies (even some of Pixar's) try to establish themselves as modern fairy tales and fall flat.

Two days ago, a friend asked me which movies of all the ones I'd seen through the years at the theater stood out in my memory. It was an interesting exercise in thought, and in the end, I could give her only three answers: District 9, because it is the exemplification of everything Sci-Fi is supposed to do (and really, it's probably the single most disturbing movie I've ever seen, not because of content, but because of its message). Sunshine, for exploring the bizarre connection humans have with their settings. And finally, August Rush, for accomplishing what a lot of other movies have tried to do--become a modern fairy tale.

From beginning to the end, August Rush defies explanation. There's not an easy way to even give a synopsis of it. "Well, there's this boy who's looking for his parents, and... he's really good with music, but uh... There's so much else going on, but it's really actually very simple." The best way I can describe it is this: It is the story of humanity, told through music.

It opens on a young boy in an orphanage, a boy who just happens to be a musical prodigy. (Seriously, the movie depicts this kid as possibly being even more gifted than Mozart.) He hears music everywhere he looks, from the wind to the sounds of cars. And he's convinced the music he hears is the music his parents heard on the night they met... And if he could just find a way to play the music, his parents would find him. And thus begins the most unbelievable story of incredible talent and sheer determination I have ever witnessed on a movie screen. This boy, August, becomes a superhero wielding music and ingenuity as his tools.

August Rush only feigns at being serious, which is where it goes wrong with most of the critics. It's painted like a story that could actually happen, except, obviously, it never would. August Rush makes no apologies for being unbelievable. But the magic of the story is the value of pausing, and wondering... Is this possible? Would you wait eleven years for your true love? Could you really hear the music, if only you were listening? Truth is stranger than fiction, right? And the most interesting part of all: there's no divinity, no supernatural force guiding the events. There is only the power of sheer determination, of devotion, and the value of never losing hope.

The movie is a perceptual masterpiece. For anyone who loves music, and may have wondered, "Hmm, what might it have been like in Mozart's head?", August Rush gives you a possible answer. It very keenly shows what the world looks like to someone who is a musical genius. If you've ever heard music in the wind or set the twinkling of distant stars to musical notes, you would like the world you see in August Rush. If you have ever listened to a beautiful song, and thought the world would be a poorer place without it, you should watch this movie.

It's also a musical masterpiece. The entire score consists of bits and pieces of surreal tones, arpeggios, and three small themes. Though the movie, the chaos and dreamlike nature of the notes mature, until August finally brings them together in the breathtaking "August's Rhapsody" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UhDZ5_pTcHA). The composer is said to have spent five years creating this one song. It shows. But even listening to the song isn't enough to appreciate how well-crafted this story is. When you listen to this seven-minute song and realize that each and every second of it has shown up somewhere else in the movie, that each musical thread is telling the entire story all over again... That is more than just a musical masterpiece. I don't think we even have a word to represent that.

August Rush has all the features of the traditional fairy tale. The good guys, bad guys, tragedy, heartbreak, the magical feeling, justice, and of course, true love. But it isn't telling the story of gods and goddesses, or extolling virtues of religion or culture. Instead, it is a fairy tale about humanity told through music, and the great things we're capable of.

The preview doesn't do this movie justice, because there's no way to explain what it's about in a three minute ad. But I remember watching that preview long before it came out, and it caught my interest. Maybe it's because I'm such a music person (If I had to chose, I'd rather be blind than deaf, because I don't know how I would live my life without music). I'm certainly not a movie person. The first ten minutes of the movie used to be on Youtube, and may still be. My biggest gripe about the preview is it makes it look like the lovers, August's parents, just went their separate ways willy nilly, when in fact, they were forcefully separated and simply could not find each other, no matter how hard they looked. (But really, if your biggest complaint about a movie is it's preview, then that movie's doing pretty good.)

Here's the preview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUQ0qxmr2Gc

Talking with my friend about the movie really made me remember how much I loved this story all over again. Did anyone else see it? Has anyone else seen any other surreal movies that seemed like modern fairy tales?

8
General Discussion / Man-made Global Warming
« on: May 04, 2011, 12:44:32 am »
I am probably opening a can of worms with this post, but... well, we'll see what happens.  :)

I once believed very firmly in man-caused global warming. I believed that we were forever ruining the environment and setting ourselves up for a "Day After Tomorrow" type catastrophe (Great movie, but it's dead wrong on so many fronts). It was all so clear to me. The reports all pointed to it, all the scientists agreed: Something was wrong, and we were causing it.

And then I started actually studying the environmental sciences, instead of relying on internet armchair/Wikipedia science. I began to look into the debate, and saw that almost all the major critics of man-made global warming were geoscientists and climatologists, the people who actually know what they're talking about. I read that the most popular reports that scare people about global warming, the info used in Al Gore's famous documentary (that I loved up until about two years ago), all that scary info was actually falsified.

I try to remain neutral in opinion about this, because I admit that just because I'm a student of the environmental sciences doesn't make me an expert. But my opinion has been slowly, but surely, shifting in the other direction. I find that much of the rhetoric I hear repeated about global warming is much like a lot of the nonsense repeated constantly about diet science: I.E., it's been said so many times that people just assume it's all true. That it's all "unquestionable." There will be DIRE consequences, you know?

One popular claim: The Earth is undergoing a rate of mass extinction at a rate faster than any other time in Earth history. This is just not so.  While we seem to be undergoing an extinction event, Earth has pulled out at least one mass extinction that makes stuff going on now look like child's play. It's called the Permian Mass Extinction, and it occurred at the end of the Paleozoic Era. 95% of all vertebrate and invertebrate life went extinct, both land and marine. You may have heard of an event at the beginning of the Paleozoic called the Cambrian Explosion. There were a few minor extinction events during the Paleozoic, but in general, both land and marine fauna were far more diversified and numerous than at any point since.

The leading theory about the Permian Mass Extinction has to do with a mantle hot zone erupting into present-day Siberia for... oh, about a thousand years straight. A mantle hot zone is basically a pipeline straight from deep within the Earth's mantle to the surface. The mantle, contrary to popular belief, is not molten. It's actually solid because its under such great pressure (the asthenosphere, which the Earth's crustal plates (lithosphere) moves around on is partially molten, and sits atop the mantle). In a mantle hot zone, the rock rises from deep in the mantle, and undergoes decompressive melting, which causes it to erupt on the surface. This event raised the global temperatures, which resulted in stagnating ocean currents, which killed nearly everything in the water except anaerobic bacteria and other small creatures capable of surviving in anoxic waters. Climate changed on a massive scale the world over, heating up incredibly. Earth very nearly wiped the slate clean of life 248 million years ago, all without human help.

For a modern day equivalent to that massive mantle hot zone, look to Yellowstone National Park. Which has been rising about an inch a year since 2006 as the magma chamber beneath it swells and mushrooms the Yellowstone plateau upwards. And there are a lot of Earthquakes there as the magma plume pushes on the land. Comforting, eh?

The idea that melting ice from the poles will create a Waterworld type environment is silly. First of all, polar ice is only a sometimes-occurrence in Earth's history. For most of the Mesozoic era, we had no polar ice. In the very early Mesozoic, when Pangaea was still together but starting to rift, all land was not under water. Even after Pangaea had properly broken up into a bunch of pieces, land still was not flooded by water. (Epieric seas, or shallow, inland seas, are an entirely different occurrence that has nothing to do with sea level). Before the Mesozoic, in the Paleozoic, Earth had a few episodes of glaciation alternating with no polar ice. Even further back in the Proterozoic (second half of the Precambrian), Earth wildly bounced between a "snowball/slushball Earth" and no polar ice.

The CO2 thing also makes me scratch my head, as if people think it's strange that there's an increasing amount of CO2 in the environment when Earth has a history of doing this sort of thing. At the tail end of the Mesozoic, there was twice the percentage of oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere than there is now, and Earth cut that in half all by itself, and did it fast enough that it coincided with another extinction event.

Is the increasing amount of CO2 bad? Yeah, for us. For mammals, certainly. Not for the Earth. Not for all life. If we're wiped out, the next creature capable of surviving will expand to fill our former roles. After the Permian Mass Extinction, reptiles owned the Earth. After the Mesozoic extinction, mammals inherited the Earth.

The Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption in 2010 released more CO2 into the atmosphere than humans have managed to do in the last 40 years put together. For days, flights were delayed or redirected, and ash fell. But now, has there been any massive change to the world environment because of that one eruption?

Don't misunderstand me. Pollution is a bad thing, because it's bad for us. It's bad for life. It's bad for biodiversity. Undoubtedly, our careless dumping of trash and crap into lakes and rivers causes problems for biodiversity. We can cause extinctions that way, and we undoubtedly have. I am anti-pollution because I am pro-biodiversity (and, you know, pro-human).

A footnote: Ice cores are only valuable for the last 500,000 years or so, which sounds like a long time.... but it's not. When you hear talk about India ramming into Asia at a "high rate of speed" to create the Himalayas, keep in mind that it moved a blazing 20cm a year. That's roughly the length of a tall cup. To try and conceptualize geologic time, imagine that India moved from the area of present day Antarctica to collide with Asia... by moving the length of a cup every year. That should put it into perspective that we have no way to really conceptualize how immense geologic time is (or universal time, for that matter, which is much longer). When we talk about dinosaurs, life before the dinosaurs.... We're basically talking all within the last 542 million years. Again, sounds like a lot... except it's only 16% of geologic time. There's at least another 4.1 billion years that went before the dawn of the Paleozoic and the Cambrian Explosion.

Check out this image:
http://www2.estrellamountain.edu/faculty/farabee/biobk/geotime_usgs.gif

Anything bigger than a small clump of bacteria lived within the last spin and a half of that wheel. "Fast" is a relative word when you start getting into spans of time like that.

If you read through all of that, you might think I'm here to argue that man-made global warming is all nonsense. However, like I said, I'm trying to remain neutral on the topic, and I want others' opinions. Does anyone know of any reputable, recent research done comparing paleoclimates with the modern climates? Good evidence not peppered with politics? I am not an authority on this topic, and what little I know just tells me that I really know nothing in the grand scope of things.  From what I little I do know, it seems like we're tiny drops in the bucket compared to Earth. If she wants to pull the plug on us, we're toast.

9
General Discussion / Help Identifying a Chrono (maybe) Song?
« on: December 31, 2009, 06:39:39 am »
Hello. :) I consider myself a music fan, especially where the Chrono games are concerned, so I was wondering if someone might give me a little assistance. There's this song on Youtube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFcVh8nYXg&feature=related

The song that was uploaded was not the song it was supposed to be, but people in the comments are clamoring to find out what the "fake" song really is, and no one seems to know. When I listened, I was struck by how similar to Chrono Trigger/Cross it sounded. Someone else even commented that it sounded like something straight out of Chrono Cross.

The problem is that is seems to use mostly harmonies of CT/CC songs. You can actually hum many of the Chrono themes along with the music and they harmonize perfectly--you can even hear the "Life, a Distant Promise" theme outright at 5:45. It seems like there are harmonies (or shades of the original music) at 0:30 (Broken Fragments/Life, a Distant Promise), 2:40 (Memories of Green), 2:52 (Time's Scar), 5:05 (Chrono Trigger), and something that sounds suspiciously like the Final Fantasy prelude at 3:50.

I checked out all the remixes I could find, but couldn't find anything quite like this. Am I making a connection to Chrono music that isn't there? I am fairly tired, and it's late for me, so it's a very good possibility that I'm just hearing what I want to hear.

10
General Discussion / NaNoWriMo 2008
« on: October 28, 2008, 04:15:58 am »
Anyone participating this year?

http://www.nanowrimo.org/

11
General Discussion / *sigh*
« on: October 23, 2008, 04:29:12 am »
You know, I'm not sure if this kind of thing is even allowed.  If not, please delete and accept my apologies.

I must be the opposite of the Springtime of Youth.  The Springtime of Youth board makes me smile, but in a way it frustrates me.  Why?  It's because I can't even remotely find that kind of vigor in myself.  I'm 24, and I feel like my life has bled away before my eyes, turned to ash and dust.  I'm so tired, physically, mentally, emotionally...

While everyone around me is moving forward, I feel like I'm literally standing still, at a dead stop that I'm unable to break free of.  I do have things going for me, but they all feel colorless and bland, pointless.  In fact, everything in my life feels colorless and bland.  I have so many things I need to do, but no idea how to go forward. 

I know I'm likely depressed.  My good friend recently died at the end of August after a four-year battle with leukemia, and it hit me really hard.  He was doing better, on his way up after battling bravely, and was scheduled to have a bone marrow transplant two weeks from the day he died.  But he'd been talking to his father, and had gotten what he'd always wanted to hear: an unconditional "I love you."  Two days later?  He died.  His heart was worn out, and just stopped.  He was 29.

His death has made me think very hard on the purpose of life.  Is there any purpose at all?  Is it to have children?  To make discoveries?  To die?  I don't believe in an afterlife, don't believe in some great beautiful hereafter.  So what is the point?

Probably the worst thing is that I don't even know what I want from life.  A while back someone (Zeality, I believe) started a thread, discussing the penultimate/ultimate/secondary desires they had in life.  I thought long and hard after reading that thread, reluctant to even try to reply, because I honestly don't know.  It's stuck with me ever since I read the post, trying to think about what I want out of life.  It isn't necessarily love (I don't believe in true "love", anyway), or power, or specific achievements.  I mean, I have things that I want to do, but they're not anywhere near the penultimate/ultimate purpose of life level.

My current wish?  I want to get a book published.  I've written the book, been turned down five times by publishers, only to have the most recent publisher send it back to me three times asking me to revise parts of the story.  I want to believe that they're interested and may eventually pick up the text, but I don't dare get my hopes up.

That's my problem: I don't dare hope for anything.  I don't think I know how anymore.  If there's no hope in my life, then there's no point to life.  Then why live at all?  Why continue to live if I have no purpose and no hopes or dreams? In fact, if there's no real purpose to anything, then why does anyone live at all?

I don't know if I'm overworked and simply exhausted.  I don't know if I need to talk or shut up.  I don't know if I need more rest or more action.  My family doesn't care, and my "friends" don't care to listen.  I'm just so tired.

I need to speak to my father, but I don't know how.  He's done a lot of bad things, but I know, somewhere in the deep recesses of my mind, that he loves me.  But I'm so upset by his mere presence that I can't even speak to him.  The problem is that he doesn't have much time left on this Earth, so what do I do?  Do I go with the path of least resistance, the one that will tear me up less?  Or do I potentially derail my sanity for a week and go see him anyway?

I'm not exactly sure why I'm posting this here.  I've been lurking on this board so long that I feel like I know a lot of you, even if I don't post very much.  I'm sorry to whine...sometimes venting helps me figure things out.

12
General Discussion / Just watched "The Dark Knight" (no spoilers)
« on: July 17, 2008, 04:50:06 am »
"THE DARK KNIGHT" IS AN AMAZING MOVIE.

Working at a movie theater has its advantages. Such as being required to "quality check" movies before they come out. :) So, obviously, I just spent the last three hours watching "The Dark Knight".

Let me be clear. I don't really like comics or superhero stuff. The older Batman movies (the 80's and 90's ones)? Hated them. They were too silly for my tastes, and none of the villains were scary. I liked "Batman Begins" quite a bit, but it wouldn't be one of my favorites. I honestly didn't believe that the Joker could be pulled off either believably or in a remotely scary fashion.

I was wrong.

"The Dark Knight" probably just became my favorite movie of ALL TIME. IT IS THAT AWESOME. HEATH LEDGER SCARED THE CRAP OUT OF ME IN THAT MOVIE.

Heath Ledger as the Joker was AMAZING. I would be scared to death of this guy if he were real and I ever met him. I was very doubtful at first of Heath Ledger's ability to play the role until I saw the teaser trailer for the movie. I thought, "Eh, I'll give him a chance." HE IS A HUNDRED TIMES BETTER THAN I COULD HAVE EVER IMAGINED. In fact, I can't even imagine anyone else in that role now. Heath Ledger IS the face of the Joker now!

At times the Joker's antics were like calculated chaos. Here's the thing though, HE WASN'T PSYCHOTIC. He had a complete grasp on reality for the entire length of the movie! He completely knew the difference of right and wrong, but loved wrong, and loved pain and making other people hurt! AND HE WAS COMPLETELY BELIEVABLE! He's the first true villain I've seen who's sanity is questionable, and not for the reasons you might think! Yes, he acted crazy, but though you know he's insane, he meets none of the normal criteria for insanity (other than the traditional, 'he wants to kill people' perspective). You know something is VERY wrong about this guy, yet...yet...you just can't figure out what! He's not insane (not completely, at least), he's not psychotic, and he's got a full grasp on reality, and you're not sure if he's a flippin' genius or a crazy dog as time goes on.

He was SCARY. I mean, there are weird villains in every superhero flick, but his performance is very intense. I...wow. I just don't know what else to say. I think Heath Ledger scared the crap out of me as the bad guy.

The movie was long, but I didn't notice. In fact, when it was over, I was looking at my watch and going, "Hey, is it over already?"

Go see The Dark Knight. GO AS SOON AS YOU CAN. I see most of the movies that come out (it's part of my job), but I haven't seen one this amazing in YEARS. Even if you're not a fan of Batman (I'm not) please go! You won't regret it!

I know I'm just going on and on about it, but...wow. AMAZING.  I just want to tell everyone I can about it!  :)

13
Kajar Laboratories / Some Chrono Music Remakes...
« on: April 10, 2008, 04:46:11 am »
I've been working a lot of hours lately, and nights have been slow.  So in my spare time I started messing around with a few tracks from Chrono Trigger and Cross.  Three weeks of sporadic work later, I've remade seven songs, and I thought I'd share:

http://rapidshare.com/files/106302560/chrono_music.rar.html

These are remakes, not remixes.  They're near identical to the game tracks, except for instrumentation (in some cases).  And I am by no means good at this--this was simply a fun thing to do in my spare time, borne out of the love of all things Chrono.  :)

Here are the songs:

1- Girl Who Stole the Stars
2- Manoria Cathedral
3- Manoria Cathedral (performed by a flute choir)
4- Manoria Cathedral (on piano)
5- Corridors of Time
6- Corridors of Time (with choir)
7- Frog's Theme

Most of the flute you hear is performed by me, with the exception of a few low-pitch notes in the flute choir and the beginning of "Frog's Theme" (hey, even after 13 years of playing flute those triplets are hard to play and stay perfectly in tune).  Personally, I really like "Girl Who Stole the Stars" and "Corridors of Time" (without the choir) best of all the ones I did.

So, how are they?  Good?  Bad?  Should I run away from music and never return?   :D

14
Fan Fiction / Forever Zero FlyingArrow (Recommendation)
« on: March 26, 2008, 04:48:12 am »
This is a little gem I stumbled across while browsing the Chrono Cross section of fanfiction.net.  The title is simple, but the short fic is incredible.  It's Serge-centric, haunted by Lynx and a past he can't quite remember.

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/3657117/1/Forever_Zero_FlyingArrow


It amazes me that of all the horrible stuff on that part of FF.net that gets lots of reviews, this well-written fic hadn't gotten a single one.

15
Characters, Plot, and Themes / King Guardia and the Rainbow Shell
« on: March 07, 2008, 12:47:54 am »
I just finished replaying Chrono Trigger, and I'm left with a question.

On the Rainbow Shell sidequest, when you finally return to the present you find that King Guardia is on trial for selling the 'family heirloom', the Rainbow Shell.  It's not surprising that Marle is confused ("But there IS no family heirloom!") because, if I understand it correctly, she's immune to some degree to the changes that she makes in time.

However, why doesn't King Guardia know of the Rainbow Shell?  He adamantly states that there is no family heirloom either.  But since he hasn't been time hopping with everyone else, why isn't he affected by the changes that Crono, Marle, and Co. made in the past (storing the Rainbow Shell in the Guardia treasury in 600AD)?  He should have grown up knowing that the Rainbow Shell was there!

Perhaps I've missed something simple here.  Any ideas?

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