Monday, May 26, 2014

These are exactly 5 of my favorite things

I make lists in my free time.
Lots of them, whether they are outlines for books, or a T.V show i wanna write. The different characters I am working on. The wonderful qualities of my Girlfriend. Budgets for money spending, the program schedule for a t.v. channel online. Places, books, movies, music.
Don't even get me started on my amazon wishlists. At one point they numbered over twenty. TWENTY! They had everything from comic books, to movies, to furniture that i wanted to buy.
Christmas was awesome because I would get to write out a list of things I wanted. Not that i would ever get what i wanted, but that's not the point. The point is that I started to like Christmas more for my List for Santa, than i did for actually getting gifts. Then it started becoming about making a list of gifts that i would end up buy for other people. I would write them, then rewrite them. I would color code and alphabetize them. Then start to organize them by where I would go shopping for the people. It started to get pretty bad.
I still sit down and write out lists of my favorite movies and songs and books and what not. And since I can't figure out what else to write about at this point, I figured it would be cool to do one of those lists.
I have decided to do my top 5 songs of all time. if you know me, then you probably know most of these, and will not be surprised. You can stop reading if you like, but i would say, although I'm sure I have spouted of about my favorite (insert object of affection here), I highly doubt you fully understand why these things mean so much to me. So allow me to open up my soul to you, and bridge your understanding of reality and mine.

5. Made too Pretty - As Cities Burn

Let me start off by saying this about slot number 5. It's always changing.
Seriously, if you were to have asked me this like a week ago, I probably would have said Endless Fantasy by Anamanagachi. Before that probably Thinkin bout you by Frank Ocean.
The point being that this is like the free agent of favorite songs. I have no qualm about switching it out on a continual basis, just enjoying the sounds that come through my stereo system as long as I can, before i get sick of it, and throw it away last last nights Chinese food.
Made too Pretty is a song that I started to listen to because a friend (We'll call him... Mater) told me that the band, As Cities Burns, was starting to go in a weird direction. I listen to the CD, over and over and over again. Trying to pick up on any hint of loss of faith, or construed theology, or odd morality. I have always enjoyed ACB, and wondered why a "Christian" band would suddenly start to be labeled differently.
Here's the thing though, the more I listened, the more I realized that these songs were not songs of oddity, or of lack of faith. But of honesty and redemption. When I inquired my Mater further about what he thought about the album, he told me primarily this song left him feeling odd.
This is not an indictment on my friend. Mater is one of the most intelligent and enlightened guys I have ever had the privilege to argue and share my life with.  But he told me that This song in particular made him feel that they were becoming a big to big for their breeches. (my words, not his.)
I was astounded. This song, of all of they others was, to me, a great observation of the church and chritianity today. Pointing out the culture that we live in and how we are flawed in our thinking.
He saw it as an attack on the church in general. That they were running from their Christianity and finding it to be flawed at its core.
One thing about me that i have always been told and am very away of, is that I'm stubborn. When i have to defend something, it becomes very close to me. This song was something I had to stand up for, and in so doing, it moved its way up the flag pole to... we really the base of the poll. the very bottom of this list. But at this point in time I would say that this song is my number 5 song, because of the honesty of the arist, and they over all atmosphere of the sound.
Mater, by the way, Being the smart and fun guy that he is, was able to see that I was very protective of this song, and decided to not make it as big of a deal as it could have been. That or he just didn't care that much. Either way, I could totally see why. I make way to big a deal out of most things.

4. Mouth like a Magazine - Showbread

Like a lot of things that I now love, such as Coffee, Tea, Girls, The Guild, The Office, Parks and Recreation, The outdoors, SplinterCell, Chris Evans as Captain America, I began my relationship with this song in complete hatred. The band members looked weird, the music was odd and there was screaming... glah. Of course i was only like fourteen, and my musical taste was quite unrefined. Not that I have some crazy awesome sense of music nowadays. I just hadn't been exposed to anything new at that time.
I was going to a youth ground in my home town and had won a DVD full of current music videos from a record label "Tooth and Nail", so i went home and played it. what I had really been given was a door way to the bounding limitless, creative world of new music.
That's one of the main reasons why this song is so important to me. It was an introduction into the sound, the style and the life that i would live for the next several years. The reason why this song is not my top 5 and not songs like "Reinventing your exit" by Underoath, or "Paper Hanger" by Mewithoutyou or "Serial Sleepers" by House of Heroes or "Spy Hunter" by Project 86, which are all on the same DVD, is because of one simple action in my life. Skipping the current song.
I am a very fickle when it comes to listening to music, and usually it depends all on my mood, but i will skipp probably five or six songs for every song I actually listen to fully. My Collections is pretty eclectic, with rap to worship, screamo to pop, from folk to techno. so I very a lot.
The thing is with this song, I have never skipped it. Since the day started to realize that it was an OK song, to the day I was at the front of the audience screaming it back to Josh Dies, I have never skipped it. It doesn't matter what mood I'm in, or where I'm at, as long as the people around me are OK with the song, I will listen to it.
It number four because their are other songs that mean a lot more to me, but sometimes I feel like skipping those to get to something else. This one will always play through, and will always get me jacked up.

3. Salt in the Snow - The Classic Crime

Musical talent that keeps me learning more, Lyrics that are honest, inspiring and cleaver, and a sense of humility that makes you wanna like them as much as possible. The Classic Crime is absolutely, 100% my favorite band of all time. I found these guys late in my high school career, when I was realizing that Creed wasn't all it was cracked up to be.
There is a lot of power in words. The ability to break people, and to build them up. I think the reason i like this band so much, is because of Matt McDonald. He is an amazing lyricist and he is backup by some of the coolest most down to earth, and talented to boot, guys ever. This son in particular is something close to my heart because of the message it has. Basically (and this is just how i see it. some one else may have a way different reaction to it) Its a song about being fed up with life. Asking God to take it all away, but knowing that there is something better ins store.
It pumps me up, it make me think, and it helps me praise God for the life i have.

2. Lazy Eye - Silversun Pickups

I honestly don't know where to start with this song.
I am a fan of Silversun Pickups.  I wouldn't say i'm their biggest fan, nor their more religious follower, but i certainly enjoy their music.
And that right there is exactly why this song is number two. From the first time i heard this song, sitting on my couch watching music videos, drinking hot coco (cause I thought coffee tasted gross, HA!) to owning a vinyl copy of the CD it comes on (which hasn't happened yet, but my birthday is right around the corner, and if anybody loves me they will make that happen.), I have really enjoyed this song.
It is chill, and rocking, its weird enough to get your attention, but not so weird that I feel embarrassed about listening to it around anybody.
Here's the thing about this song though... I still don't get it. Almost every other song here I can sing every single word to, but not this one. I can tell you what I think they all mean, but not this one. And that's awesome! It's been around for ever and i still and experiencing it. I'm sure a ton of people out there could tell you what its all about, but i like the fact that I'm still discovering the words and the meaning behind it all. I won't go a look up the lyrics, cause frankly that like cheating at a video game.
So here is Number 2, The one that alludes me, and kicks butt.

1. Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen

Here it is! The number one! Queen.
Literally the greatest song written by humans. The music is epic, the melodies are complex and resounding. The Lyrics are some of the most deep and true words ever spoken. Like an angle poured its heart out and a recorded company happen to record what it was saying. and that angel's name... Freddy Mercury.
Queen is a band that I grew up on. So its make sense that the song resonates with nostalgia. Car trips, Sunday afternoons, parties with family. They all have the soundtrack of classic rock, and this song in particular.  My dad taught us at a young age that it was indeed appropriate to headbang as hard as possible to Bohemian Rapsody.
This song starts out with a sense of establishment, getting you prepared for a character that seems in complete and utter darkness. Finding no sense of hope and thing to hold onto. As i grew up I started to connect more and more with this dark and desparing tone that Mercery set in this song.
The song is not a happy one at all, but then if you think about the greatest things in the world, which of them are happy.
This song is my nuber one because its a journy, andf it not just a hourney through a song, but through life. Through pain, and suffereing, becasue you grow as the gown continues on. Allowing you to have a small sense of hope.
The hop being that you are not the only one. You arn't going through your pain alone. The suffering of this world is commonplace and well deserved. But if we are together in this, in the game that is life, together, then we can fight the darkness. The devil doesn't look so scary when you are not alone in the dark.
I will end with my favorite verse in the Bible, because this song makes me think of it almost every time.
"Do not gloat over me my Enemy! Though I have fallen, I will rise. Though I in darkness, The Lord will be my light." Micah 7:8
T.W. Clawson

Monday, May 19, 2014

In the Beginning

This was the first thing I ever designed. I sat in my room with my sister and we talked and drew and made each other laugh. Its the sort of time I think about when I miss her. Her and my younger sister. They mean a lot to me. They were the ones that taught me that I genuinely love people, no matter who they are. I always loved my Brothers, cause... well cause I had to. It wasn't an option. They were there in my life, and I had to deal with it. (not that i don't like my brothers, that's just how it was.) 
It wasn't until I was introduced to M&M (which is what I will refer to them as.) That I had to make a choice on whether I was going to open up to people or shut them out. They were thrust into my world and I was expected to just be OK with it. These two shy, awkward, rebellious, beautiful, silly girls came out of no where and I had to make a choice. Do I stay closed off and just wait until our parents split, then we go our separate ways and never speak again? Only being nice to them because it's the polite thing to do, putting on a face of somewhat acceptance. 
Or do I spread wide my arms and hold them close? Giving them trust and love at every turn and twist of ours, and our parents relationship. 
I chose to Love them. I chose to pray for them, to watch over them and be their brother. They became two of the most important people in my life. 
Because of them I became a better person. They taught me how to have patience, how to treat girls, and the right way to listen. I would not be in a good relationship with my girlfriend with out their guidance. I would not be a better brother to my other siblings, Full, Half, Step, it doesn't matter, With out them first teaching me to be a good person.   

So I sat in my bedroom with the first of the two M's and we grew closer to each other. We let each other in to the others life. It allowed us to speak on our feelings toward the world. She gave me tips on how to pick up girls, I told her about all the guys that liked her at school, and we bonded. 
This graphic is not just the beginning of my graphic design, but a representation of the beginning of me becoming who I am. 
I told my sister that I would always be there for her, and I meant it. We have shared tears and laughter, a bedroom, a boat, a tent, an apartment, and a life. 
M&M I miss you.
T.W. Clawson

Monday, May 12, 2014

That's just what I think

So, I wrote this whole post and realized it was just a crazy angry Rant.
So I went ahead and stripped it down to the bare essentials, so its less crazy, and more the main thoughts going on inside

There are a lot of things that piss me off in life, but there is one thing that I absolutely hate above all.

The thing is, I probably hate these things because I see them in myself. I'm a huge screw up.

Now please don't red and then go, "ahhh, Tyler your not a screw up." because I am speaking from personal experience. its like if I said, " Arizona is hot in the summer months." and you have been to Arizona and you loved it and didn't wanna hear people bash on it. So you reply with, "But it's a dry heat. so its not as hot."
the fact remains that Arizona is a HOT state in the summer months, and I speak out of personal experience. It's hot, It's Freaking HOT! Its like Hell made a mistake on its fire and brimstone order form that month and had a clearance sale, everything must go, and Arizona decided that it would be a good investment and bought it all up, charged it to their master card and let the heat insure! Just as sure as I am about the Lucifer welcoming heat of Arizona, I am that much more positive of the screw ups in my life.

 The last big Screw up that I remember, cause it happens so much that I forget all of them, was with my Dad, Uncle, Family friend Brother and Cousin.
we were all hanging out on a porch talking about movies and stuff. One of the fun things about my family is the fact that we love to say movie lines. Its almost a challenge. One person says a line from a movie and everyone else tries to figure it out and say other lines from said movie. or at least how I see it happening in my mind. Well, since we were on the topic of movies and what happened to be WW2, I thought it would be fun to spout out a line form a movie I had watched just the night before. Inglorious Bastards.  (now that I have said I watched it, I wanna tell you how I feel about that movie. So I think I will, in another post.)
I don't even remember the line that I said! That's How dumb this was. As well, I realized while saying it that it was to long a line. and that I hadn't memorized it perfectly. So I randomly jumped into this conversation with a movie quote, that nobody could figure out. It was WAY to long so it was not very funny, AND I was doing that thing were I was correcting myself while trying to say it... Worst... Joke... Ever.

But I still can excuse it. Because I live with these same tenancies. Because I think when humanity took on the sin of the world it brought about the Neediness, and stupidity, and lack of interest in what people are saying. But what I will never live with, What I will never allow people to do around me, ever, Is to think that they are better than me for any reason.

Let me say that again. I am Better than no person.

I am Better than No One.

Ok. So I'm playing a fine line here.

 I will never understand the constant though process that says, "If I am meaner I will get more out of the situation."


 Its not the generic, "be nice to people, and the world will be a better place." It's actually quite the opposite.

If you walk into a retail space and/or call a call center and you are in a foul mood, or mean or pushy, I will purposely antagonize you.

People believe that because they can go tell on an associate, that they have some crazy power over them.

When in fact the manager who gets complained to actually in the end will side with the associate.

Complainers are doing nothing but feeding the delusion of resolution of their own ego.

Ask me a question then I expect that they will allow me to answer.

Someone thinks that they are better than me enough to interrupt me, and not worry what my full answer is, is Someone who doesn't even need a real answer. So I won't give them one. I will not play into the games of the high and mighty.

That is the highly condensed version of this rant. Thank you.

T.W. Clawson