Friday, February 24, 2012

Music archiving.

I must have control of my musical environment. I recently turned my iTunes Match back on after several months of having it off after a fiasco with a Tina Fey audiobook not showing up in my audiobooks correctly and it erased my play counts from the months that Match was off. This may mean nothing to you, but it screwed with my world, I tell you!

As I've mentioned before, I am listening to all 80GB of my music this year. From January 1st until yesterday I had listened to over 900 songs and I was keeping track by using the play count data iTunes automatically keeps and it was all for naught! Luckily, I still have my stats and I still remember almost everything I've listened to this year, so today I painstakingly went through my entire music library (9477 songs, mind you) and fast-forwarded to the end of each track I know I've listened to this year so far so that iTunes would know that I've played it.

Needless to write, but I will, it took hours -- about 4, to be almost exact about it. This is an obsession. How many people would even notice that their play counts are different after messing with setting on their iTunes? How many people even mess with settings on their iTunes? How many people even know what iTunes Match even is? How many people even know they have play counts in their iTunes? How many people that know about Match and play counts and all that would even care if they knew their play counts were messed up?

My archiving nature is screaming so loud right now. It seems completely arbitrary which songs it counted and didn' counts are nowhere near accurate now, nor were they before this fiasco. Thank goddess/Buddha/Jesus/whoever for

The glitch also erased my most recent mix. Thankfully, I keep a detailed notebook of my mixes. What's wrong with me?

I have also been preoccupied lately with how much awesome music is out there and how little time in the day, in my life, there is to listen to it all. Every moment I don't have headphones in or around my ears I feel guilty for not consuming music. I want it at all times! Even past the point of having a headache from all the brain-processing. I'll pop a few ibuprofen and dive back into the distortion!

I have a problem.

Hi, my name is Mixtress Rae and I am a music nerd.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Prom.

Episode 54 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
airdate: 11 May 1999.

Buffy is talking about couple stuff as Angel and Buffy wake up from a nap together. Getting a drawer and mirrors and such.

Ooh, Anya asks Xander to the Prom!! Yeay for the beginning of Anya.

Joyce has a serious talk with Angel about how Buffy has no future with him. She does it real classy-like. "I know you care about her. I just hope you care enough."

The Angel/Buffy breakup happens in an underground tunnel. The tunnel wherein the classic line is uttered, "No, you have something face." when Angel says "nothing" is wrong. This is the first time I've felt anything while watching them break up. I still agree it needs to happen, but I don't like that this means stupid Riley is coming. Grumble.

Xander finds out Cordelia works at the boutique and that her dad is in trouble for tax evasion and the whole family is now poor. Then the Hellhound breaks in. The Hellhound trained to attack people in formal the prom's out, but no, Buffy is going to save the day so everyone can have a normal prom, goddamnit!

Xander paid for Cordelia's dress because she didn't make enough money in time to pay for it herself. How sweet is my TV boyfriend? The sweetest, I answer.

My boyfriend in high school didn't take me to the prom either, but it was because he was a jerk-face and backed out at the last minute, so I had to go alone.

I don't know if I have said this before, but Sarah Michelle Gellar is the only person I have ever seen who doesn't look stupid when she runs.

This is the episode where Buffy gets the cute handmade umbrella award for saving everyone all the time: Class Protector. Angel shows up to dance with her one last time. Sweet.

I SO need a prom do-over. Who's with me?

Monday, February 20, 2012


Bold. Ballsy. Blunt. Blousy.

These are all B-words.

No, but seriously, these are all things I think of myself as, when in reality, I do a lot of another B-word...backpedalling. I am the eternal peacemaker, like my astrological sign (Libra). I am constantly trying to control my environment, but instead of CREATing my own environment, I am manipulating space so that everyone is harmonious, and I am sick of wasting that energy.

The truth is, I have original ideas and weird thought patterns lurking around in my brainspace and I would like to choose to use these skills more often than the ones I have wherein I am well-liked and peaceful. Yes, I am generally unaffected and I genuinely want others to get along and extreme emotions confuse me, as they confuse one of my idols in this life, the fictional character of Spock and a new hero, Sheldon from Big Bang Theory, as previously mentioned in this blog like three days ago.

You see, the thing I admire about all of my heroes (Buffy, Courtney Love, Spock, Sheldon, etc) is that they don't care what you think. Secretly, I don't care what you think, either, but I do want to be liked, so I pretend to make sense for what I perceive is the benefit of others, but really makes my interactions with them boring and generic. The self that I project in my blogs and zines are closer to who I really am than how I act in the social stratosphere. It is not as if I am trying to hide or am ashamed of who I am, I am just trying to survive in a world that I have chosen to perceive as bland.

But the world is anything but bland. The world is rich and exciting and full of incomprehensible beauty. I fiercely love a lot of things in this world. I will fight for yearly vacations to the beach and the desert. I will throw large percentages of what little money I possess at breathtaking electronic devices or the donation to internet radio stations I like. In short, I do what I want and you're not the boss of me!

And I realize that I am a grownup and no one wants to be the boss of me (I don't even think my boss at work really wants to be the boss of anyone), so my outcry is really only towards myself in this regard. I want to be more openly who I am. I want to come out as the secret Courtney Love that I am. If you ask me about this blog tomorrow in person, I will most likely act the part of the wrong B-word: blase.

The only boys I have ever truly been able to fall for are the ones that knew me in high school and I used to think the reason for this was because it takes me forever to get to know and trust someone and while this is part of it, I think another reason is that I was more myself in high school than I ever have been as an adult and people that knew me in high school knew the real me. For some reason I have attached adulthood to this weird cage of bourgeois. I have done all these things to distance my body from this norm (tattoos, piercings, weirdo thrift store clothes), while my manner has been quite tame in comparison. In high school, my goth style was an enhancement of my weird self instead of counteracting tameness.

It sounds as if I'm barely holding back an over-brimming crazy, and perhaps I am, but this crazy is who I am. I am someone who blurts out weird things and likes to get into conversations that are meaningful and cause people to question themselves. I will always advocate for the outcast and try to get someone to see another's point of view. Accuse me of having an agenda. The thing is, we all do...those that embrace this agenda and put it out there in the world are those that get it done. They are usually also called "Bitch" which is another B-word I embrace fully.

My biggest pet peeve is when someone expresses a driven desire to do something, but they don't because of what someone else will think. But, I am capable of something almost as bad, if not more so...I profess that I don't care about things I'm not doing that I secretly wish I was doing. I'm not an extrovert. All of this madness happens within for the large part, so it is not as if I will suddenly be different, I may perhaps blurt out my weirdness a little more often until I become more confident overall. I want a manifesto. I want to write myself into thinking I am a mythological being. I want to be my own muse.

I want my self-actualization to be glittery.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Choices

Episode 53 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
airdate: 4 May 1999.

Off the top of my head, I can't remember which episode this is, but I have always really enjoyed the concept of choice. It was one of the main themes that drew me to the mythology of "The Matrix" and I really enjoy when pop culture symbolism harkens back to the reality that everything we do in life is our choice. No one is forcing your hand. You do as you wish and the consequences/rewards follow, NOT the other way around. There's nothing more intolerable than people who think life happens TO them. If you are a person that tends to blame fate or thank God, give YOURSELF a little credit once in awhile.

Now, let's begin. The Mayor is giving Faith a beautiful knife in the opening scene. Buffy and Angel are killing vampires and wondering if they're in a "rut" in their relationship. Credits.

Buffy thinks that she can't go to college 'cause of being the Slayer. Faith is reaping the rewards of her choice to align herself with the Mayor with her new knife and the doting he places upon her. Xander is choosing to forego school to get "On the Road" like Kerouac. Cordelia is being mean as per usual. Buffy has decided to stop waiting for the Mayor to make his move and go on the offensive. Faith kills another human (I think he was human).

Willow is wearing a velvety witchy dress. Xander sees Cordelia working in a boutique which is a big deal because Cordelia shouldn't have to work because her daddy is rich. Intrigue?

Angel and Buffy are nice in a rut. They work well together fightin' a choreographed dance. Oh no, Faith has Willow captive. Everyone is fighting over the choice to trade back the thing the Mayor wants for Willow or, as Wesley wants, NOT trade and possibly sacrifice Willow. Everyone is yelling and arguing and Oz walks up and throws a pot, shattering it against a wall. He has made his point.

Willow kills a vampire by levitating and then staking him with a pencil. Cool. She then escapes and finds the Books of Ascension. Faith finds her and Willow gives her a rousing speech about how she could have made a better choice. She was also a little TOO insulting, but hey that's the innate meanness of Willow.

When they all meet up with the Mayor makes a rousing speech about how Buffy and Angel are doomed. He, like Spike did earlier this season, says a lot of very insightful things. Like how dismal their future will be. "You're immortal, she's not." Just as they're making the trade, Snyder shows up and ruins everything, opening the box and unleashing the contents; ew, a huge spider. Turns out there are 50 billion in the box and the Mayor has to eat them all. Ew.

Willow has chosen to stay in Sunnydale to go to school.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Weighted Variables.

One of the things I've learned in therapy is that different things need different weights. Different people need different scores. You have to categorize others. You can't put an effort of 10 into a friendship that's, at best, a 6.

I spend hours, days, joyous meticulous time categorizing my music, why wouldn't I categorize my interactions as well? I have realized I am a lot like Sheldon from Big Bang Theory. I often worry that I will unintentionally offend because I never know what offends others. Usually if I offend others it is because they misunderstand me, not that I am as heartless as I seem. I think differently than others. I am a weirdo.

Anyway, my therapist has given me a task to assign values to the people in my life. I tend to worry too much about what others think when I don't understand them yet, and he pointed out that if I don't really care to understand them, why worry about how they see me?

I like to work within boundaries. If I don't know where my parameters lie, I falter. I stumble without bars to hold. I am most comfortable around people who are upfront, blunt, and set clear boundaries with me. This is why I gravitate towards boisterous people. I have tremendous respect for direct individuals and find passive-aggressiveness incredibly exhausting and inefficient. I can compromise and I will say what I want...and when I say "I don't care" I really DON'T CARE. Being somewhat Asperger's and terribly literal (like Sheldon, I often don't pick up on sarcasm) I genuinely feel like this is a simple thing. It seems to me like the general public is stumbling around trying to be nice and not taking what they want out of life. I hate the thought of doing wrong by someone, but if they don't tell me when I overstep a boundary, how do I know it's there?

So, friends and family: I know I am off-putting in my strangeness often, but I do want to do right by you. If you give me a boundary, I will respect you and try to exist within that boundary. I'm going to put my shields down a bit more from now on because I am wilting not opening up to others. I want to be my ballsy self in more places than merely print (blogs, texts, zines, etc). I don't take things personally, therefore I never expect others to do so, therefore, if I offend, please let me know.

If you think of the social interactions/comprehensions of the social atmosphere as a continuum and Sheldon is on the "doesn't get it, doesn't care" side and Penny is on the "socially responsible, empathetic" opposite side of the spectrum, I lie somewhere in between. I usually don't get it, but I am empathetic and I do help me out and explain it to me if I'm not getting it, and don't wast my time or your own in this life being passive. Take what you want and draw those lines!

Friday, February 10, 2012


We all have 'em. A typical sentiment, but I don't usually admit mine.

The truth is, I'm insecure about losing weight. I REALLY want to, but I don't like to admit I want to or that I'm trying, but I am. I'm trying really hard. I've been working out 6 times a week since the beginning of the year and though I have successfully hit the third belt hole, I have not lost any pounds. I am thisclose to being overweight and despite walking and Just Dance-ing and getting a gym membership and killing myself on the elliptical, no weight lost! It makes me nauseous to admit it, because this is the most common problem. The most mundane thing. Everyone is always trying to lose weight and I'm just another chink in the weight loss machine. I have the same insecurities as millions of Americans. There it is; I've admitted it. I'm out of the closet.

I tell everyone, including myself, that I don't care about a number and that I just want to feel healthy. And that really is the biggest part of it, but there IS a fucking number in my head and I want to hit it. I want to at least have lost the 5-10 pounds that I feel like I SHOULD have lost by now. It's been nearly a month and a half, goddamnit! Where's that scale satisfaction? I keep trying to remind myself that I am doing great. I am walking and elliptical-ing and dancing and moving a lot more. I'm even using the weight machines, but I am tempted to go on some crazy raw food diet for a week just to jump start this thing!!

This is typically something I would put in my private blog, but I am trying to show more of my vulnerability, so here it is. I'm one of the hordes of overweight Americans attempting to lose weight in a new year.

I'm usually not hard on myself at all. I'm not an insecure person. In my head I am a goddess, and when I look in the mirror I see what I want to see and move on. I barely glance at myself, in fact...I don't linger long enough to see the flaws. What's the point? I'm not trying to hit anyone's beauty standards but my own...but those standards are getting more rigorous with age. Why? Is it because it's harder to lose weight the older I get? I used to be able to just decide I'm going to lose weight, and I would. I can remember in my teenage years I could gorge myself to belly-distention and then wake up flat the following morning. Those were the days, man!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Earshot

Episode 52 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
airdate: 21 Sept 1999.

Buffy's fighting demons without mouths. Some of their blood seeps into her skin. This is the episode they had to delay significantly because of the Columbine shootings...'cause Jonathan freaks out and almost shoots himself at the school. Uh, spoiler alert.

Giles finds out the demon can "infect" the host with an "aspect of the demon" so of course Buffy is freaking out she's going to grow a tail or something because her hand is all itchy. I know I've said it before, but what makes Oz so hot is not in small part the black fingernails. Black fingernails just do it for me.

Buffy is all paranoid also about Angel's involvement with Faith in the last episode. Blegh, I'll be glad when Angel is gone simply because I don't like him and Buffy together.

Suddenly, the aspect of the demon shows up...gasp! Buffy can read minds. She's enjoying it at first. Maybe I should read Othello. Buffy goes over to see Angel and starts talking about Faith to see what Angel secretly thinks about her, but of course she can't read a vampire's thoughts. "The thoughts are there, but they create no reflection in you."

Sometimes as I'm trying to have deep thoughts about the episodes as I'm writing these blogs and all I can think about is trivial things like how pretty Buffy's eyes are or how witty Oz's quips. I suppose it's not always insightful to do these freewriting Buffy blogs, but I have to forgive myself for not always being insightful. I'm doing this for writing practice. I'm doing it to be more aware of my culture consumption. Sometimes it's really awesome and I have 'a-ha" moments.

I love that Cordelia says out loud exactly what she thinks.

Oz thinks: I am my thoughts. If they exist in her, then Buffy contains everything that is me and she becomes me. I cease to exist.

In the cafeteria Buffy is overwhelmed by thoughts of others' insecurities. Everyone is worrying about something: grades, if people like them, etc. She hears the thought, "This time tomorrow, I'll kill you all." She tries touching everyone around her to focus on their thoughts, but she passes out. She goes home to rest and overhears Joyce thinking about having sex with Giles. He he.

Willow has everyone question everyone in the school to try to find out who is planning to kill everyone in the school while Buffy quietly (loudly in her head) goes mad at home in her bed in her cow spot pajamas.

Angel is trying to find the demon of course, 'cause he's all manly like that. He gets her the antidote of the demon's blood? That's what infected her in the first place! Whatever. And Jonathan is in the clock tower with a rifle.

Buffy wakes up blissfully calm, her head quiet.

Cordelia finds a letter for the newspaper editor that sounds like a confession from Jonathan. It's a few minutes before lunch so everyone splits up to search for Jonathan. Buffy finds him in the clock tower and dramatically somersaults herself up to the top breaking in through a window.

I really like the insight Buffy has in this scene. Jonathan says everyone thinks he's an idiot and Buffy tells him she doesn't think about him much at all, that no one thinks about anyone else because they're all too busy worrying about their own shit to notice someone else. It's so true, man! I always think that when someone is being really fatalistic and self-centered worrying about what other people think. People don't think. Not about others. We're all selfish beings and that's ok. It's not bad to be selfish. We all have to be self-sufficient so of course we're only worried about ourselves. It's survival. No one cares what you do unless you're invading someone else's privacy.

Buffy speech: My life happens to, on occasion, suck beyond the telling of it. Sometimes more than I can handle. And it's not just mine. Every single person down there is ignoring your pain because they're too busy with their own. The beautiful ones, the popular ones, the guys that pick on you, everyone. If you could hear what they were feeling: the loneliness, the confusion. It looks quiet down there. It's's deafening.

So good! The Slayer has gained some serious empathy through this experience. After her big speech Jonathan gives her the rifle and she says something about "mass murder" and he tells her he'd never hurt anyone, he was going to kill himself. Meanwhile, Xander has snuck into the kitchen to get some jello and sees the lunch lady putting rat poison in a big pot. Earlier in the episode he mentioned that it was probably her. Xander is again going to save the day.

All is averted.

Commentary (by Jane Espenson) notes added 5.19.13: Buffy wishes she knew what Angel was thinking and in this episode she takes on an aspect of a demon that allows her to hear the thoughts of everyone. Jane makes a comment about how Buffy at first thinks it's cool, "all these rooms I can walk into" and then later she hates it: "all these people can walk into my head". A "be careful what you wish for" episode like "Band Candy" when Buffy wishes Giles and her mom would stop being so parental for a bit. 

I think that if someone could really hear what you were thinking, it wouldn't come out in words like it does in pop culture. You'd feel what they felt maybe, or perspective would change in some weird way, but would you really HEAR thoughts like the words of the other person in your head? That seems unlikely to me.

Not a very interesting commentary. Mostly Jane is just remembering writing it and telling us what's going on with the plot. I'm glad I have less than ten of these left. I'm ready to move on to the next thing, which I think will be watching special features in order (instead of reverse order, like I'm doing now). Then, finally, I will start the comics...catch up to now and then start on the special comics like Omnibus and side plot stuff. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


So, I'm doing this whole self-improvement thing this year. That sounds so lame, but I am really enjoying it. My bathroom scale is total crapola, but I think that January=exercise worked out really well. I swear I've lost weight even though the dumb scale disagrees with me.

Anyway, last month my goal was to do 30 minutes of activity per day, allowing one day per week as a SKIP day. I took an extra SKIP day the week I got my tattoo because I was incredibly worn out, but other than that, I did it! This month I have a bunch of writing assignments AND I have to write one blog per day. This either means writing something like this here, a Buffy blog, or I'll write in my private blog. I toyed with the idea of separating my Buffy blog from this or making this my Buffy blog and making another one for my more personal bloggy writings, but I think I'll just keep them the same. I'm not quite a "product" (fully, or even partially formed writer) yet, so it doesn't yet matter if I compartmentalize properly. I just need to write a LOT right now and later worry about HOW I'm writing. I have all kinds of ideas. Beyond the general plan of improvement wherein I will focus on one thing per month I'm also:

*listening to ALL my music this year (around 6000 songs haven't been heard in over a year, so I am listening to everything I haven't in the past year this year, if that makes sense-so this equals around 17 songs a day, and I'm adding music all the time). This, so far has proved to be a very potent way to curate my music more effectively. Every once in awhile a song comes up on shuffle that makes me cock my head and go, "WTF is this?!" and then I can satisfactorily delete it from my life. It's liberating!

*writing for the Current, Etc, a local free newspaper. An issue comes out every two weeks and I should be in every one if all goes well!

*putting out 4 zines this year, one for each season.

*reading 52 books this year (I've already read 6!).

*writing a novel in November: I read in "The Happiness Project" that if you write 1667 words a day for every day in November, you'll have a "Great Gatsby"-sized novel by the end of the month!! I'm doing it! I haven't decided if I'm going to be ambitious and write fiction or do the first draft of my music memoir, but I'm doing it!

*finishing my Buffy blogging this year. I might even start Angel when I'm finished.

*I'm going to revisit the idea of creating a radio station. I'm not sure how I'll do it...if it will be podcast-based or linked to a radio website...I'm just going to get back into it and start!

I'm really going to try to get the most out of my life. Oh, and each month is EXPANDING on the one before, so not only will I be blogging every day in February, but every month after; thusly, I am continuing on my exercise plan as well. I'm feeling more in control than I have in a long time. I love checking shit off lists!!

Oh, and the Cibo Matto album cover has nothing to do with anything except that it's an image that I equate with Rosie the Riveter in its inspirationalness and it makes me happy to look upon it.