Monday, November 14, 2011

Bystanders, Synesthesia, Jenolan Caves, and Fredweng

1. Continued to read The Song of An Innocent Bystander.

I think it's a fantastic book. I'm liking it a lot.

The villain in the story is awful—an arrogant and violent bully.  I hate that I could relate to some of his feelings early on in the book.  I guess we all have a dark side. And all humans, even the worst ones, have aspects of themselves that are relatable.

I can't relate to wanting to bully people.  But I can relate to being angry at people and angry at society.

Instead of holding people hostage at fast food restaurants, I bitch on my blog.

2. Went to sleep and had a dream about my friend Tracey.

She sends me a video of her family's trip to Bali. I'm happy to get it and excited to watch it. I see her and her family sitting in a car.  Then, in another part, Tracey is getting a facial. It involves exfoliation.  I learn that the process takes 6 hours.   I think to myself that I could never handle that.  You have to lay on the bed for that long.  It would drive me crazy in the same way a long plane ride drives me crazy.

I see them remove dirt from Tracey's face, dirt that wasn't really visible when it was on her face.  I'm wondering if I have this dirt and am thinking it would be nice to have it removed. 

3. Wondered about the meaning behind the dream.

I guess it could be about mixed feelings—wanting to do something for some reasons but then not wanting to do it for other reasons. 

4. Read article about an Aboriginal woman from the Kimberley who's coming to sing on Broadway.    She's going to be in a show with Hugh Jackman.

I didn't know Hugh Jackman had a show.

Now I do.

It's called Jackman's Back on Broadway Show.  

5. Found a review of the show.  The show is actually called Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway.  I guess I misunderstood the other article.  

Anyway, the show is a one man thing. Jackman sings Broadway songs.  Sometimes he makes funny little jokes.

The reviewer gave the show an A-.  That's very good.

6. Started to watch video of Olive Knight singing. This performance is from Australia, not Broadway.

7. Noticed that Olive Knight's performance in that video was part of something called Dessert Feet Tour.  

Their website says their purpose is to bring music into remote indigenous communities. 

It seems, at least for now, they work only in Western Australia.

8. Went to Tallygarunga.

Today I'm going to read a story called An Abstract Beauty.

The characters in this story are Anastasia Valentin and Bryan Novak.  

Bryan's new to me.

Anastasia is part of the vampire family. I don't think I've read her biography before, but I'm pretty sure I read her twin sister's.

The story takes place in the Musiciary which is in Kookynie Hall.

9. Started to read.

It's the morning of November 13.

Anastasia plays the piano.

She makes a mistake and stops playing.

Then she notices Bryan.  She's seen him before. He sits outside the music classroom.

Anastasia asks why he never comes in.

10.  Read Bryan's post.  He sees colors when music is played. Is that magic caused by the music players, or is it his own type of magic?

I think seeing images with music is one of the traits of autism.  It has a name. I forgot what it is.

11. Consulted Lord Wiki.

It's called Synesthesia.

I'm skimming a bit here. It sounds pretty cool.

Lord Wiki has a list of people who are synesthetes. He calls it a neurological condition. I'd say it was a gift.  

Well, at least he doesn't call it a disorder.

Anyway, some of the people on his list: Tori Amos, Billy Joel, Leonard Bernstein, Marilyn Monroe, Geoffrey Rush, and Stevie Wonder.

12. Learned I may be one of these synesthesia people.

Lord Wiki says there's a type called Ordinal Linguistic Personification. These are people who attribute personalities to things such as numbers and letters.

That's me.

I always thought it just meant I have an active imagination.

I'm learning so much about myself this week.  Now I know I'm vigilant.  I have migraines. And I have synesthesia.

Speaking of vigilant...I had Tim take the personality test yesterday. What's interesting is his scores were much higher than mine.  He had two or three traits in the 70% range. My highest score was only 71%.  I guess that's fairly high, but Tim's highest scores were higher. 

My mercurial score was only 63%, so that probably explains why I can sort of relate to the mercurial traits but not a lot. Or really it's a matter of me relating a lot to some mercurial traits; then with others I'm thinking that's so NOT me.  

13. Felt hurt when reading scenes with verbal abuse in The Song of An Innocent Bystander. The crazed gunman says horrible things to the manager of the restaurant. It reminds me of the things said to me by certain people in the blogging world.

The funny thing is I think I'm over being angry at them.

I still feel hurt, though.

I feel hurt because other bloggers joined the chorus of hatred without knowing me and without knowing the full story.

I feel hurt by those who were witnesses and didn't speak up to support me.  

I feel hurt by the fact that I tried to confide in a few people, both during the event and after.  The general message I received was that it was a childish drama, and I should simply not let it bother me.

It did bother me, and it still bothers me over two years later.  It will probably bother me through life, mainly because there was no resolution.  And there's also the fact that I see it happening time and time again to other people both in real life and fiction.  

14. Started to read the biography of Anastasia Valentin.

Her Patronus is a seahorse.

That's very cool.

15. Learned that Anastasia has some mozzie scars.

I like little details like that.

16. Learned that Anastasia is a little less thin than her twin sister. This is because she is not as physically active. I think her sister plays Quidditch.

It seems Anastasia is more of a music type person.

17. Learned that Anastasia is more quiet and humble than her twin.

18. Learned that Anastasia has some envy of her mother, father, and older brother.  Since they're of the vampire-sort, they have immortality.  There's a part of Anastasia that wants this too. She loves the world and it's mysterious. She wishes she would have more time to explore.

Maybe she could be like me and believe in reincarnation?

Or is there a chance she could become a vampire too?

I'm guessing she's not the type to push that situation for herself.

Would she be upset if fate brought it upon her?  Would she regret her wishes and envy?  

19. Learned that Anastasia is scared of blood and flying.

20. Learned that Anastasia has a psychic ability called retrocoginition.  I'm not sure if I'm familiar with that.

21. Learned from Lord Wiki that I AM familiar with that. The link to his article on retrocoginition was highlighted, meaning I've visited before.  I'm hoping it's not because I've already read Anastasia's biography.

22. Saw that I misread the sentence. It's Viktoriya (the twin) who has the retrocoginition.   I think I have read about her before, and that's probably why I read about retrocognition.

Anastasia has precognition.  I think that's knowing the future while retrocognition is knowing the past. 

23. Learned that Anastasia has been acting a bit mischievous lately. She's keeping secrets from her sisters and not working as hard on her studies.

It sounds like she's one of those good-girls who's slowly moving away from that image.

What's going on, Anastasia?  

24.  Finished reading The Song of An Innocent Bystander.

It's such a beautiful book. I highly recommend it.

25. Went to the website of Ian Bone. He's the guy who wrote The Song of An Innocent Bystander.  

There's a photo of Ian Bone on his site.  He reminds me of Buster Baxter from Arthur.  I think it's his smile maybe?

So now....

I have at least two reasons to like Ian Bone.  I like his book, and I like how he looks. I love Buster Baxter.

26. Saw that Ian Bone has mostly written books for younger children.  I wonder if I'd like any of them.  

27. Saw that my Australian Archer of the day is John Lee Archer.   He was an architect.  

He was 1791.   Maybe England?   Maybe Ireland?   I'm not sure. The Australian Dictionary of Australia isn't very clear about the whole  thing.  Maybe they're not sure either.

28.  Learned that John Lee Archer had his architecture training in London.

When he was in his 30's, he was sent to Van Diemen's Land to be an engineer and architect.

29. Learned that John Lee Archer designed several buildings in Hobart.

Lord Wiki has a list of them.

It's a long list.

It seems John Lee Archer designed pretty much every building in Hobart.

Oh...and Lord Wiki says Archer was born in Ireland.

30. Thought about how John Lee Archer's resume is quite impressive.

31. Looked at the website of the Cape Bruny Lighthouse. Archer designed that.  He didn't built it, though.

Convicts were the ones who built it. 

32. Looked at the website of the Penitentiary Chapel.  John Lee Archer designed that too.

The chapel has ghost tours in the evening. 

33. Saw from Lord Wiki that John Lee Archer didn't just design things in Hobart. He also designed a few things in Launceston and elsewhere.

34. Started to look at Fredweng's Flickr set of his 2nd day in Australia.  

It looks like he went to a cave.  Maybe it was the Jenolan Caves? 

35. Saw that Fredweng went to the Blue Mountains.   So I'm probably right.  That's near the Jenolan Caves.  

36. Saw from Google that the Jenolan Caves are IN the Blue Mountains and not just near them.

37. Saw that Fredweng probably stayed in a hostel in the Blue Mountains.  

The hostel is called Blue Mountains YHA.  

This one has rooms for families that include private bathrooms. It's only $126 a night. That's not bad.

38. Liked looking at Fredweng's photos of the hostel.  

It looks like a nice place.

39. Liked this room in the hostel. It looks cozy, and I like bookshelf with all the books.   

40. Wondered what it would be like to sleep in a dorm room with strangers.  Do people get any sleep or do they talk all night? What if people are talking and one person wants to go to sleep?

How do the roommates decide when to turn off the light?

41. Liked this road photo.  

42. Thought this was a nice photo of the Blue Mountains.

This one is nice too. 

43. Realized I really like Fredweng's photography.   He's good at remembering to take pictures of things like hostel lobbies and storefronts of places he visits.  I usually forget to take those types of pictures; then later I regret it.

44. Wondered about these lights in the cave.   What are those?  

45. Learned from Lord Wiki that some of the Jenolan Caves have electric lighting.

One of these caves is the Chifley Cave. It was the first cave in the world to be lit up by electricity.   Although back then it wasn't yet known as the Chifley Cave.   It was known as the Left Imperial Cave. 

The cave was lit up in 1880.  At that time, Chifley hadn't even been born yet.

46. Learned about the Lucas Cave in the Jenolan Cave. It has this area that has fantastic acoustics.    Concerts are held in there; and people also use it for weddings and other ceremonies.

47. Started to watch a video of a concert in the cave.

48. Started to read Notes From the Teenage Underground by Simmone Howell.

I may have read one of her books before. 

49. Went to the website of Simmone Howell.  It turns out she's written one other book. It doesn't sound very familiar to me, so maybe I haven't read anything by her before. 

50. Went to Funtrivia to take another Australia quiz.  Today I'm going to take a quiz called Z is for Zed Not Zee.  It's about things in Australia that start with the letter Z.  

I have a feeling I'm not going to do so well. I don't know much about z-related Australia things. 

51. Got question #2 wrong and learned that cricket players used to put zinc on their faces.

Maybe I've seen photos of that.

52. Got question #6 wrong and learned that a guy named Stan Zemenak starred on a radio show called Beauty and the Beast. 

53. Learned from Lord Wiki that Stan Zemenak was right-wing. And he was known for acting abusive towards his callers.

54. Got question #7 wrong and learned there's a suburb in Brisbane called Zillmere. 

Lord Wiki says Zillmere is north of the CBD.

55.  Got question #8 wrong and learned there's a town in Tasmania called Zeehan.

56. Got question #9 wrong and learned there was a secret part of the military in World War II called Z Force.

Lord Wiki says they performed 81 covert operations in the South Pacific.  

They were predominantly Australian; but there were also some people in the group from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand. 

57. Got question #11 wrong and learned that Australia mines something called Zircon.  It's used in ceramic glazes and other more dramatic things such as nuclear reactors and Space Shuttle heat

58. Learned from Lord Wiki that Zircon is also used in radiometric dating.

59. Got question #12 wrong and learned pedestrian crossing lines on the street are called zebra crossings.

60. Got question #14 wrong and learned another name for the Zebrafish is The Old Wife.


61. Learned from this website that the Zebrafish has a painful sting.  

62. Finished the quiz.   I didn't do so well.   I got a 7/15.  The average score for the quiz is 10/15.