Archive for March, 2012

The LightPak idiosyncrasy

Sunday, March 25th, 2012

Ever since I was young, I’ve always found myself different from my peers. It’s never been much of a problem because I usually skirt burgeoning fights by being quick on my toes and my head. I was also an excellent student so I wasn’t much of a problem to my professors. Perhaps that’s why I find myself tolerating other people’s idiosyncrasies easier when I matured. I mean, after all, I’m already 24, and I still watch anime. 😛

I haven’t been heartbroken much since I haven’t really tried much, but I realized that my reaction to it was just as offbeat as any of my quirks: instead of wallowing in a temporary amnesia caused by dipsomania, I either write or purchase items from eBay I would never have the gall of purchasing in a more balanced mental state. (And in a more balanced mental state, I guess I wouldn’t write something like this.)

I guess one of my barely healed wounds of the heart have recently reopened a bit. So how do I deal with it? I ponder on bidding for an accessory to that treasured handheld of mine. What does that accessory actually do, one asks?

It’s just a lamp.

That's all it really does. The bulbs light up on top, but that isn't even properly done with the silver leaking at the bottom right corner of the accessory. Yet I wanted that.

It’s a glorified lamp. Contained within the gray plastic case are six small, incandescent light bulbs that turn on when batteries are placed to complete the circuit, and it currently costs 35 USD (which I believe would not go any higher, unless there’s someone even more passionate OR stupid than I am when it comes to stuff like that). It would have been a fair price had the accessory been pristine, but with silver bleeding all over the reflector and with a broken on-off switch, who in their right mind would purchase a small, unpredictable lamp for 35 dollars? (I mean, someone other than me, of course.)

Whenever I ponder about things like these I just sit down and write, and most of the time my reason comes back to me before I do anything stupid. While I indeed would like to have the item, I can’t condone its exorbitant price, so I’ll just wait for it to get significantly cheaper, or just spend my money more wisely. I’m not even thinking of the girl because of these things.

But I’m grateful for being like this. I’m grateful for not running into alcohol or anything destructive whenever I’m down. Even if I did spend a bit for the item, the worst I would be hurting are my savings. Perhaps others would think of this as blatantly stupid (and perhaps it is) but I’m glad I have the privilege of being able to translate what I think into words that roughly convey how I feel. From insignificant reflections such as these to broad comparisons of anime series, being able to write is something one should be truly grateful for.

The beauty of simplicity: Ano Natsu de Matteru

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

I guess I was raised to value the complexity of intelligence and the intelligence of complexity that it reflects in my passions and wishes in life. I have been quite vocal regarding undeserved praise towards pedestrian novels such as the Twilight saga, and I admit that my favorite novels are those that are either ignored or willfully unread by the hoi polloi. I know that what I read are classics, although they are currently rather ignored. Among my most favorite novels is William Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom, which jarringly shifts through time and person to tell a story that coalesces upon itself at its end. In the same vein is the symbolist masterpiece, Petersburg, by Andrei Bely.

I think the same could be said with regard to my choice in movies. I don’t seek to be idiosyncratic, but I prefer The Killing to any other movies by Stanley Kubrick, and sincerely wished that Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy replaced an undeserving Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close in the recent Academy Award nominations for Best Picture. I love watching films that so beautifully invoke the tip-of-the iceberg image by Freud: there is an elephantine mass gurgling and burbling beneath the surface that is up to the viewer to decipher, enjoy, and decode for himself, with so little to see on the surface itself. I was never fond of the easy way out in the things I loved.

Because this show is that awesome

I think that I have been consistent, even in relatively lesser media such as anime. The Tatami Galaxy was a masterpiece of prognostication, multiple viewpoints and intertwining realities, but it took rather astute observers to appreciate its nuances. Steins;Gate was also masterful because of its ability to connect and twist the story to become esemplastic, and it was reminiscent, at least for me, of The Sound and the Fury.

While I prefer the complex and intellectual examples in my favorite media, there are exceptions to all of them, and the most recent one is the series Ano Natsu de Matteru.

The series is not complex: it does not require multiple re-watches to understand the story, but like the simple and yet beautiful Mice and Men novella by Steinbeck, it simply and incandescently gets the job done. It is a bildungsroman of a certain Kaito, who, like most of us back when we were in high school, sought his own identity in the context of his society. While the story is essentially a rehash, the characters that interact with one another make it one of the better, if not the best examples of anime, because it has characters that are essentially human but also essentially good.

While most people would probably be unimpressed with the flow of the plot, I simply found the empathetic characters to be among the best-written among the series I’ve watched. We all have to admit that it was Lennie and George who made Of Mice and Men, after all. Anything can have a barebones plot, and as long as the characters that pepper that story are rife with life and color, it would be at the very least good. I think Ano Natsu approximates that.

The right kind of pride

Monday, March 12th, 2012

I think that the less I write, the dumber I become. I won’t recycle the overused excuse of academics: I’ll just try my best to write. I think that today was a milestone for me because it marked the most recent exam where I simply just tried my absolute best to prepare for. Although it didn’t even have any bearing academically, I simply wanted to prove to myself that I was good at the subjects and the things I wished to be good at: I think I did very well in our exam today in Biochemistry.

It has been a while since I’ve slept late just to prepare for the exams. Oftentimes, I would read through a subject matter once or twice, and then sleep early without minding the results the following day. As long as I passed, I really didn’t mind what my results were. In medicine, I seek to pass: my ultimate goal is to become a doctor. I’m not even thinking about specialization for the time being. I just want an M.D. attached to my name, as well as to prove to my father that I had done his will.

But I’m glad that when I’m focused and passionate, I usually excel at the things I love. Although I may have had as much as 20 or so mistakes from that examination, I have a good feeling that I would be among the top of our class. And that’s enough for me.

Have you guys any of these issues? I just wanted to get this out there, because at least I’m writing something.