Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Poor Use of Physical Education

You never know what conversation will come up when you are with family. For some reason we mentioned the Presidential Fitness Awards from elementary school, possibly from watching my nephew shoving his feet into his mouth.

For those of you who didn’t have a school participating in this program let me give you a run down. Every spring and fall everyone in school was tested in a variety of activities that supposedly demonstrated your fitness in particular areas. There were tests for pull-ups, sit-ups (curl ups now), spiriting, flexibility, and the mile run. If you did all of them at or above the supposed fit level you got a certificate saying so. There was also  National Fitness Awards which were a little bit easier to get.

No one in my family ever got one. My eldest brother was the most athletic of us all and he could never get past the flexibility test for even the National Award. The test was called the v-sit reach and involved sitting on the floor with you feet against a template about a foot and a half apart (probably two feet for an adult) and you had to reach past you feet. National needed only one or two inches but no one in my family could get past their feet.

These tests were the most hated part of the year for just about everyone. Even the kids that could do it didn’t particularly enjoy it. Sure, they got everyone congratulating them on a good job but there were al lot of more fun things that we could be spending time doing.

What really strikes me now as I attempt to better my physical fitness is how poorly they tried to prepare us for the test. It wasn’t like they tested you in the fall and tried to better your scores over the year so that you did better during the spring test. Particularly as you got older you just did the test occasionally and that was that, I mean we continued doing it as we got into middle and high school, only noticeable because one and a while you would be forced to run a mile out of the blue, the only warning coming in winter when they would tell you to remember your sweatshirt the next day.

How hard would it have been to encourage us to actually attempt to exercise in between times? They did send us workout sheet occasionally so we would work out at home, but they never connected it to a reward, never attempted to make it a friendly competition. Maybe it was people scared to upset the children, but I think that they might have gotten me to play along if they had pointed out that I could get a better fitness score.

Maybe this is why we are such an obese nation, instead of trying to make us physically fit they had us play basketball endlessly.

Monday, November 29, 2010

This is required

I have to post simply to say that I once again completed National Novel Writing Month. Also to say that I once again plan on editing the novel in a month, just like I claimed last year. Hopefully this year I will not reread it and declare it the worst thing since Twilight.

Now instead of saying how I need to prepare for Nanowrimo I'll  be saying how I need to prepare for Script Frenzy in April. I'm thinking about doing the sequel to my previous work, but it is still four months away, anything can happen between now and then.

I got to see my family for Thanksgiving. My brothers brought me a ticket to Michigan, which begs the question, why go to Michigan in November when you're in Los Angeles? No one on the plane could answer the question.

On the topic of airplanes I really need to start flying during daylight hours. Flying at night is so boring. Everyone on the plane is usually asleep or if they aren't you still can't see out the windows. I like looking out the windows no matter what, even if all I can see is the top of clouds, and I can't sleep in a moving veicle. I've sort of done it a couple of times, but it not real sleep. Its closer to dozing.

I'll end with saying that LAX is not nearly as bad an airport that everyone was telling me. There were no lines or delays outside of my airline and it was the day before Thanksgiving.

Now we get too look forward to Thanksgiving and figuring out what you get a nine month old.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I'm a wordcount rockstar

I have the highest wordcount of the people that attend the write-ins that I go to. Which makes me inordinately proud. I suck at writing more then ten words in a row (if you can't tell from this blog). Not only that, but I have stayed on top for an entire week (not to mention it was the dreaded Week 2) with little trouble and I'm still on track for my Overachieving goal.

My story still interests me, though my 'outline' is used up now and the rest of it will be made entirely by the seat of my pants. I am well beyond the halfway point and aiming for the finish line.

This is really a fasinating experience the second time around. So many people on the forums I want to smack because they overreact to things like the website crashing or their plot changing. I never even thought of questioning these people last year, but this year they just seem like whiners.

Well, not much else on my mind,

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Why must everyone steal my name?

Last April I learned that there is an Australian scriptwriter that goes by the name "Xander Bennett" whose twitter account is @xanderbennett and email is xanderbennett at gmail.com. You might be wondering why I care since my name seems to be 'X', but is isn't. The title of this blog is Thoughts from Xander, I just sign with an 'X'.

Now I had maybe wanted to have that twitter account, but no I had to use my alias @artofcheatery and my email is bennett.xander@gmail.com - that's right, he gets all of my improperly addressed emails. Now I got over this because if I ever got published I would use my full name (which I've previously disclosed).

Then I found this kid @ABennettBooks, you see that? That's my name with 'books' on the end! He has a Blogspot with a horrible misspelling of my name too, I assume because some loser already took the correct spelling and abandoned it (that monster). My point is that people need to stop stealing my name!

Okay, I'm done. I need to write a bunch, because unlike my name thief I am not way ahead. (I also haven't done those other things I need to do. You know what I am talking about.)

Monday, November 1, 2010

It begins...

Nanowrimo started today. I attended a midnight write in and didn't write very much. Got to get my grove back, which is starting to happen as I continued to write throughout the day and I made my goal easily - even with distractions.

I even got some responses from my craigslist ad that didn't sound like axe murderers. Super extra special feeling now. My brother and sister-in-law are trying to transport me to Michigan for Thanksgiving and I'm meeting lots of cool people through Nano Write-ins.

I'm feeling good. I'm writing a blog post soon after the previous post (!) and I think a third of all my tweets on twitter have happened in the last twenty-four hours.

Things are good and getting better,