I was just gonna shoot an email to Tynan recommending this but realized, what the hell, might as well put up a community post for others. A friend recommended Tiffany Shlain's work to me, including her film Connected and a little 8-minute piece on vimeo called "The Science of Character".
I only watched the trailer for the first one, so far, but watched the whole second one (since it's short.) A lot of it was content that I knew, but her production values and presentation are very good, and in particular one quote that jumped out at me and really resonated was:
"The way to strengthen that filter is as simple as taking a moment, focusing your attention, and asking yourself: Is what I'm about to do a reflection of who I am, and who I want to be?"
It's not like I haven't heard that sentiment expressed a thousand ways before, but for some reason that italicized sentence really moved me. Actually I was thinking about heading out to get an unhealthy but delicious brunch right as I was watching the video, and when I heard that it immediately broke me out of that and made me realize it was just me wanting a distraction and some sense pleasure. It was super effective!
I carry little quotes around with me, like on cards in my wallet or places I'll see them (my only tattoo is, in fact, a quote I carry around with me) and I think I'm going to make this my next one, and anytime I'm tempted to do something, try to pause, gather my attention and ask myself that. I bet it'll be pretty effective (at least for like a month before it starts to feel stale and loses its power, but hopefully by then I'll have found another motivating turning phrase...)
Anyway her work seems worthwhile for this, and I'm probably going to watch all of Connected at some point soon. I'm pretty allergic to new-age verbiage and hippies, so I like that she definitely comes down on the "science-language" side of things.
It's 2002 and I haven't even heard of the pickup community. It's a shame because there is just about nothing I need more.
I get on my plane, headed back to Austin. It's a late flight and there aren't too many people on it. I have a whole row to myself. I'm not paying attention, and before I know it we're airborne.
The cabin lights are off, but some people have their reading lights on, creating small islands of light in the darkness of the plane. The island in front of my is inhabited by two girls.
I am having bucketfuls of trouble understanding spoken Spanish at regular conversation speed.
I know the grammar, the tenses, all that fun stuff. My vocabulary is still lacking, but I know the important stuff. Via text chat, I can carry full conversations for hours.
But as soon as someone opens their mouths and starts talking, I turn into an instant moron.
It's not that I can't HEAR them... see, I recognize most of the words. But my brain can't keep up. I'm like a child who has just learnt how to read, needing to look at each word and process it in their head. As an adult and "fluent reader," you see groups of words and instantly understand the meaning of whole sentences at a glance.
Same with spoken languages. When someone talks, you don't really "process" it word by word. You just understand.