Category Archives: Musings

The Language Of Music

Picture: anime girl playing violin.I have spent an hour today, researching a particular piece of music called “Ma Vlast: No. 2. Vltava” by the Czech composer Bedrich Smetana, known as “Die Moldau” in German (or “The Moldau”). I first came across this composition at age fifteen, with the purchase of my first home desktop, an “IMB Aptiva” back in the 90’s.

It was a song included in a library of midi files, a package belonging to a music tutor program.

I fell in love with the major tune of this piece instantly, the melody has haunted my thoughts ever since. Every now and then, I’ll hear this tune in different media, which will spark a bit of nostalgia of those long afternoons in my childhood home replaying the midi over and over again, trying to learn the piece for the piano on my own.

While suggesting to someone on the internet of the Don Hertzfeldt cartoon, Everything Will Be Okay, I became reminded of this tune once again and decided to look deeper into the story of the tune and composer. What I found, at least according to Wikipedia, is the main tune is an adaptation of many other tunes including one Czech children’s song called “Kočka leze dírou” (“The Cat Crawls Through the Hole”).

Smetana’s composition is a poem about The Vltava in Prague, starting from two springs, the cold and the warm Vltava uniting into one, its travels through the woods, meadows, flowing past various places and events, then onward towards Prague until it vanishes majestically into the distance.

It’s a very beautiful piece and I do enjoy it very much. However, it does spark a bit of philosophical thought within my mind. In my absolute honest view, I believe that music is a language within itself, and this composition is just one of many examples of this. I am not Czech nor German, I do not speak either language, yet I can understand this composition’s language very well. This music had spoken to me as a very young woman, in a profound way, in spite of the fact that I’ve never left my own country in my entire life. I can appreciate its beauty and meaning, through a universal human ability of emotion and empathy.

In this current society, we seem to be stuck in separating ourselves with race, financial class, politics, religion or non-religion, gender, sexuality, age, and whatever other nonsense we can think of. People are killing each other over arbitrary traits and not bothering to communicate with each other whatsoever.

There’s a lot of shouting, blaming, demanding, violence, but a lack of listening on every side of this situation.

If we could communicate like music seems apt to do; not requiring a certain class or group, country nor wealth, in order to meet together and understand a basic human concept, to appreciate what is communicated, to think about it deeply before rejecting it, to treasure it, and to respect it, then I believe this world would be a better place for everyone.

Picture: daydreaming music.

I could be wrong, it’s just a thought of mine. ^_^

Anyhoo, I’m enjoying an early Monday morning with Toscanini’s conduction of Smetana’s “Ma vlast” (My homeland) music poems. It’s a reminder to me, that no matter how ugly this world chooses to become sometimes, there’s still much beauty to be found within it.

Thanks for reading, as always! And be safe, my readers. I wish you all the best on your journeys! ^o^/

-D

Advertisements

Writing Video Games: Pt 2!

your-diary-enomoto-kaho-minagawa-yuuhi-girls-playing-video-games-wooden-floor-sitting-room-anime-1920x1080In 2015, I had purchased a program called “RPG Maker VX Ace” and dabbled a bit in creating video games. I’ve started and stopped six titles, never finishing a single one. I guess, I got bored halfway through creating these games and simply forgot to return to them.

However, some weeks ago, I was inspired to create an RPG Maker game to show my appreciation for a YouTuber named LordMinion777, aka: Wade. I’ve turned to his and another YouTuber’s videos (Jacksepticeye) the most during my keratoplasty recovery, which helped to keep my spirits up!

I have noticed that Wade doesn’t get many fan games in general, so I figured that I could make him an awesome game. I wasn’t sure if I would actually complete the game, but I did! My play-tester (sister) and a few others who’ve tried out the final product have remarked that they did enjoy the game! Hooray! ^o^v

I have sent the game to Wade, but haven’t heard anything back from him yet, if ever. The important thing is, that I had a lot of fun creating it and I’ve entertained a few. If you’re interested in downloading it, you can do so here: Dropbox – LordM.EXE.

Completing this game has triggered me to attempt another non-fan game. It will take some time to complete, but hopefully I will not lose steam again. ^_-

Picture: anime girls video games.

Today’s song is: Vicetone – Nevada. Thanks for reading, as always! ^_^v

-D

The Unforseeable Unknowns

Picture: anime girl thinking.Anyone who’ve bothered to get to know me a bit, or have suffered my blogs, can pretty much guess that I’m a very contemplative type of person in general. I am no stranger to the complaint of “You think too much.” However, this is my true self and I can’t help being myself. ^w^

My thoughts are not always profound ones, in spite of my love for science and philosophy. Yes, I am aware that these subjects always seem to bump heads… I’m not sure why. In spite of that, I do have musings about mundane ordinary subjects.

For example, the other day I had wondered what was the difference between a bed comforter and a duvet. I wondered if the two were the same thing, except the other had a fancier name for it. So, I did my research and it seems that the two are the same thing. However, for a good fifteen minutes, I did ponder.

I’ve always been a very curious child, I drove my parents crazy with questions all the time. I wanted to know how everything worked, why it worked, I wanted to learn about everything in the universe. My childhood was spent taking apart clocks and mechanical toys, to figure out just how they worked. And sometimes, I was able to put them back together again. ^_-

As an adult, my thirst for knowledge continues to be just as passionate, addicting, and strong as it ever was. However, I do believe that in order for me to gain more knowledge, I must always keep a skeptical mind, to question everything, and to not be afraid to ask questions… even if its a question that may be considered as “stupid” to the rest of the world.

One of my most favorite quotes are, “The absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence.” No one person on the planet has the answers to everything. Proof is very important, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that something doesn’t exist without evidence. I often place thoughts into three categories: Things that are proven; Things that are yet to be proven; and Unforeseeable unknowns.

The last group are for things that I haven’t yet contemplated or know yet that I will find myself contemplating. For example, the differences between a comforter and duvet was in this category, but has now wedged itself between the categories of “things that are proven” and “things that are yet to be proven”. I have a hypothesis that the two items are basically the same thing, based on the research I’ve done so far, but I can’t be sure until I’ve bought a duvet and compared it to my blue and white striped comforter. =p

Picture: anime girl studying.

Thanks for reading my randomness! And here’s a cool song, as a reward for your patience: G.A.T.O. Must Be Respected. ^_^v

-D

*Buy the song here: Amazon.com. I did! ^__^

Volunteering For NASA!

Picture: anime girl and stars.Over the past month, I’ve been doing volunteering for two NASA projects online. I spend two hours every other day, ten hours a week, viewing photos of space objects and classifying them. This volunteering gig is open to the public and you need not a science degree to participate! The benefits are: helping scientists with their research data and you gain awesome science experience! ^o^/

I learned about such programs from a YouTube channel that I follow daily called “Sci-show” in this video: The Awesome Power of Citizen Science. Links to the volunteering programs are in the video’s description! Immediately after the video, I decided to check it out, as I sometimes have a few hours to spare way early before dawn. I could spend that time writing longer blog posts, but I opted to do something really cool instead.

The two projects that I participate in is finding and classifying comets in space and identifying planet-forming disks. It was pretty easy to follow the tutorials on what I am to search for and it’s easy to check off what I’ve found within an image and then send in a report. There are forums, which are manned by scientists of NASA, who will answer any questions and give tips to volunteers. And other volunteers can discuss or socialize about their findings.

I very much wish to work for NASA or a local science lab in Minnesota someday, so this kind of volunteering work appeals to me and I enjoy every moment of it. I’ve learned so much and feel confident that I can successfully identify a comet from a star or a planet-forming disk from space debris.

I’m also interested in biology, so I do plan to join a cam-capture wildlife project as well, when it is approved for the site.  Within the peer review sample (as all new funded projects must be approved by the community first), I enjoyed spotting animals that I’ve never seen before in the US and reading the data on each identifying clue of that animal.

Science is cool! ^o^/

Picture: science cat.

Today’s song is: David Bowie – Space Oddity. Thanks for reading, as always!

-D

The Reasons Why I Love Anime

Picture: anime - spike spiegel.I will attempt to explain my love affair of 23 years (ahem, obsessive addiction…) with anime, in a quickie “Musing” post.

Hoo-boy. I’m going to need a bigger coffee cup for this one. >_>

A straightforward explanation: I love the animation style, the stories, and the music soundtracks. The opening and ending sequences of most anime are beyond engaging, beautiful, haunting, and sparks my enthusiasm.

For example, here’s an opening credit to “Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood”. The song is titled “Again”. If you’re not an anime fan, do view the clip below, and then honestly tell me that you’re not the least bit curious to what the story may be. I challenge you! ^_^

That’s what I thought. ^w^

I’ve been in love with anime since age twelve, it started with an anime called: Sailor Moon. This was my gateway drug into my long time anime addiction, as I would enjoy watching Sailor Moon every morning before school. I had a major crush on the character Rei (aka: Sailor Mars) and I don’t understand why… she is really MEAN! o_o

If anything, Ami (Sailor Mercury) is more my type! =p

Yes, some anime are written specifically for children and pre-teens, however a lot of anime is not suitable for children whatsoever and are created for the older crowd. A parent would have to be pretty negligent to allow their young child to watch anime like: Vampire Knight, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Black Butler (Kuroshitsuji), Welcome to the N.H.K. and Durarara!!, just to name a very few. These anime have bold sexual themes/scenes and are very bloody… I mean, very very bloody.

Picture: Durarara - Shizuo.
Durarara: Shizuo often uses violence to express himself and to solve his problems. I LOVE him!

Even the ones I’ve mentioned are “tame” compared to how bloody and sexual some anime are. I’m looking at you, Elfen Lied and Kill La Kill! (Not literally. *shivers*).

Anime like Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, Cowboy Bebop, Trigun, Death Note, Your Lie In April, and so on -although not sexually explicit,  are too complex in plot for young children to grasp. There are too many anime to watch in one lifetime and the genre is pretty broad in its target audience, from toddler to x-rated.

I love anime because I’m a sucker for a good story with strong and complex characters. I enjoy awesome music, artwork, and animation too. And this genre provides those things in one neat package.

Picture: Hetalia.

Thanks for reading! -_^v

-D

A quick shout-out to the new anime peeps I’ve met at: World Of Anime. ♥

The Art Of Role-Playing!

Picture: anime girl surfing web.In the nineties, I loved to join role-playing groups on “Geocities” forums! This primitive format was rife with such groups, where people could come together and role-play characters in a collective storytelling activity. It was a little like D&D (Dungeons And Dragons), except without casting of a die and a lot more free-roaming without many rules. Some groups were themed after popular shows or movies, while others were simply made up medieval worlds.

After a while of joining others’ groups, I decided to create a few of my own, which included one “Men In Black” and “Buffy The Vampire Slayer/Angel” RPG. It was a very creative experience that added much to my skills of writing for opposite genders and action scenes.

In the Buffy RPG, I role-played the characters of Wesley Wyndam-Price and Angel. Other members held the role of Charles Gunn, Buffy, Willow, Dawn, Spike, Lorne, Xander, etc. In these groups, gender was never an issue, people earned the roles for portraying the characters the best. For example, in my group, the role of Spike was played by a very talented woman who got his character “just right” above any other member of the group. No one questioned my roles of Wesley or Angel, as I portrayed the characters very well (because they were my fan-girl favorites, of course!).

The forum lasted for almost a month, until real-life obligations (work and school) interrupted the schedules to meet online and the group faded away. However, it was a very fun experience, well before cosplay (costume play) and solo fan-fiction writing became a more popular thing to do in these modern times.

However, I look back in memory to my old times in RPG groups and smile. Yes, it was very dorky and sometimes a little silly, but we had tons of fun together. And it was a great exercise that lead to my current style of writing today.

I’m not sure if such online groups are still around these days, but if they were, I think I would enjoy a Doctor Who RPG. I’d make for a brilliant Tenth Doctor! ^o^/

Picture: Doctor Who - The Tenth Doctor.
My actual chosen desktop wallpaper, btw…

Song of today: The Doctor’s Theme. Thanks for reading! ^_^v

-D

What If…

Picture: The Matrix Morpheus.What if you were told that there was no heaven or afterlife? What if it was possible to chart exactly what happens to a person’s spirit or “soul” postmortem, and the data is conclusive that when a person dies, the soul simply evaporates into total nothingness? How would you feel? How would you view the world? How would you judge your fellow species? In which way would you choose to live your life?

Would you become more tolerant of others who are different in arbitrary traits (gender, sexuality, skin color, race, etc)? Would your priorities in life shift? Would the things you’ve held to be so important before will now slip away? Or would your life not change at all? Would you continue your current way of living?

I’ve asked myself these questions before and I’ve came to this conclusion: I have no idea if an afterlife exist or not, none of us do. No one has truly died and have returned from death past the point of no return (obviously), and confirmed a postmortem paradise.

However, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. It is possible that an afterlife does exist, but it is very possible that it does not exist, all the same.

I tend to lean towards the belief that my life is all that I will have. When I die, I will die, and it’s more probable that there is no afterlife. And because my life is finite, it is more precious to me, I work hard to take care of it, I appreciate it more. I don’t waste my time in judging arbitrary traits of my fellow homo sapiens (humans) and I try not to waste too much time in judging the choices of others that differ from mine (ie: religion, politics, social theories, etc.). My clock is ticking and therefore I wish to make the most out of every moment that I have on this planet. As the idiom goes, “Waste not, want not.” ^_^

If there is an afterlife, I shall met it as someone who has lived her life to the fullest and have experienced a bit of paradise here on earth beforehand. And if it doesn’t exist, I’ve had my happiness and will not evaporate from this life with too many regrets.

Picture: Anime - Your Lie In April

Today’s musing was inspired by this wonderful video: Everybody Dies, But Not Everybody Lives. Thanks for reading! ^_^v

-D