19 February 2016 @ 01:23 am
i love wasabi peas, maybe that's why i'm spicy and salty  
  • I have my final exam for this term soon. YAY! I think I would do just fine, I just hope I wouldn't make careless mistakes. I have kind of given up on my tone-deafness already...
  • I tried watching the Disguiser for the past few weeks in order to fill the empty spot left by Nirvana in Fire. Nope, it's just not as good, even though it's supposedly done by the same team. I have a hard time getting to even episode 5 without sometimes cringing or skipping scenes. I haven't reflected on what made me feel iffy about the show, though.
  • I used to dislike wasabi peas but somehow the taste has grown on me. I love it now. Especially on studying nights, they keep you awake (THAT STING, MAN) and they are... good with alcohol too... However, a combination of the two isn't the best studying companion.
  • Thoughts of learning languages: I got into an argument with a classmate about this. I got so angry at him because he treated me as if I'm stupid, but I know I'm fucking right (even the teacher agreed with me). What he's missing here is how you can't treat two languages as equivalents -- in terms of meaning and intention. The reason behind this is because when you are learning a new language, I believe you should also learn about the cultural background (at least a little) to understand the intention (or essence, if you prefer a fancier term) behind the sentence. That is why "translators" are often called interpreters, because that is what they do -- they don't take each word from one language and translate them word for word into another language, but they convey the intention and deliver it in the way it would be delivered in the other language. This is why most translations are not exactly the literal meaning of the original sentence, because interpreters prioritize the intention/meaning rather than the exact word-per-word equivalent.
  • (I'm rather bad with words, so this might be confusing... I hope you guys get what I meant.)

    SO!!!! This dude in my class argued about something, let me write down the dialogue for you guys:

    A:我昨天還沒念書,明天就要考試了。("I have not studied yesterday, and tomorrow we're already gonna have a test!")


    So yes, we are supposed to fill the dialogue for B. (it's multiple choice) Option A was definite wrong, so I'm not going to put that up, but the dude in my class chose option B (“還有好幾個鐘頭呢。” / "There are yet still several good hours.") meanwhile I chose option C ("那我們現在一起去圖書館念書吧。“ / "Then let's study in the library together.")

    The thing is that these two sentences are good answers in English, but in Chinese, option B sounds like an incomplete sentence grammatically. If you said that to someone, the other person will get confused because they will ask you, so what? Good hours of what? Meanwhile option C gave a suggestion of what to do, which would be the best response. It's kind of difficult to explain this in English... I think honestly Chinese is easier to interpret in my mother tongue, LOL. B would be, "Masih ada beberapa jam, tuh.", C would be, "Kalau begitu, kita sekarang belajar bersama di perpustakaan saja."

    Also, another reason being: the test is tomorrow. Not on the day of conversation. So there won't be several (the Chinese character meant several as in numbers under 10) good hours but quite a lot of hours, or the more appropriate answer would be, "There's still today." Therefore, option C is the best.

    Anyway the dude in class told me that I have no sense of logic whatsoever because "obviously when we are talking about the hours here, it's about studying" and cut me off because I finished my explanation. I refuse to argue with an idiot, so I shut my trap after that. But I'm honestly still offended (plus, I really don't like him, I think he thinks too highly of himself that people like that really disgust me).

    I notice that this is the most fatal mistake that most language learners have, though. They treat languages as mathematics, sometimes it does in a sense that there are formulas and logic behind the formation of words. But what they are missing is that languages also contain the cultural background and origins. The main function of a language is a communication tool, so if it doesn't deliver the correct meaning/intention, then it doesn't work.

    I'm trying to figure out a way to explain things more properly nowadays, I think it's my main problem most of the time. People always think that my explanation is too detailed/roundabout and therefore difficult to understand sometimes! To think that I used to be a national debater back in high school... I think those trophies meant nothing, looking at how incompetent I am now...

14 February 2016 @ 12:44 pm
 Hello, how is everyone doing?

I went to Taichung and Nantou for Chinese New Year, but the post for that will come another day!
For now I want to write about my experience at Comic World Taiwan (CWT) yesterday.

CWT is said to be Taiwan's version of Japan's Comiket. It is probably "only" 1/3 of Comiket's size, but it's still gigantic compared to the other doujin events in Asia. I mean, the event occupies four floors... The other doujin events I've been to in Singapore and Indonesia don't even fully occupy one floor sometimes.

Some noteworthy things:
  • The queue was crazy. I went with a friend, we arrived at 8.30 am in the morning but only managed to get in around 12 pm. Granted that the event only opened their gates from 10 am for the VIP access and 11 am for the regular access, it's still quite mad how people queue until they make a circle around the complex (not the building, THE COMPLEX). I heard that Comiket is crazier tho, so... Yeah.
  • Apparently we have to buy tickets for both days? Usually in Singapore and Indonesia, you can opt to just buy entrance ticket for Day 1 or Day 2 besides for the whole event. It's not so bad because it's 200 NTD (IDR100k), but I still kind of feel wasted because I don't plan to go on Day 2 (which is today).
  • There were food trucks!! To me, it's a very US thing, hahaha. I had food truck meal for the first time back when I was in US for exchange. It's not something we have in Indonesia (IDK about Jakarta but they are rare in Bali and my hometown) or Singapore.
  • The fandoms in CWT seem to vary a lot. There were even a Fullmetal Panic cosplayer. Among the doujin booths, I see a wide variety from Harry Potter, to Marvel/DC, to Nirvana in Fire (sadly most of them are light novels that I can't read yet), to even the more popular fandoms like Haikyuu! It's quite amazing because in Singapore/Indonesia you'll mostly see mainstream/trendy fandoms only.
  • There were also a lot of original doujins/artbooks, and they seem to be selling pretty well judging from the amount of visitors in those booths too. There's a good balance between original IP and fanwork, and I think that's really impressive.
  • The most impressive thing about CWT is the culture among the visitors, I believe. I don't see fangirls/fanboys squealing or screeching or basically losing their shit over their fandom, people leave shortly after they got their stuff so that they don't get in the way of other people, there were no one who would read samples until finished and not buy anything... Hahaha. Most of the visitors are very well dressed too. :x I'm not saying that you have to be extremely fashionable, but some visitors in Singapore and Indonesia conventions don't seem to even care about personal hygiene... Ugh.
  • In relation to the previous point, my Taiwanese friend explained to me that perhaps it has something to do with how Japanese pop culture is perceived in Taiwan. Even the older generations usually appreciate it, and "otakus" don't get harsh judgment for being who they are. In Taiwan, anime/manga and video games are seen as healthy hobbies, parents would rather their kids stay at home rather than wander around outside and get into troubles (the gangster culture in Taiwan is no joking matter). So most of the Japanese pop culture enthusiasts don't fit into the usual "nerd"/"geek" stereotypes because they were never treated as outcasts/weirdos.
  • Also, no bargaining! In Singapore and Indonesia I see this often, especially done by aunties and schoolkids. But in CWT, when people buy stuff, they just take the item and give the money without any questions. The crowd control is rather good in a sense that they ban kids from the convention without the parents, and booths are obliged to label their R15/R18 doujins with huge-ass stickers. 
Something from the seller perspective:
  • Apparently in CWT, because of the huge size, most people already plan their "route" before going, so for sellers they will promote like crazy on plurk (apparently it's huge in Taiwan) or any social media. People hardly will look at random booths, so it's hard to sell if you don't really have any fanbase over there. It's quite interesting because in Singapore/Indonesia there were artists who don't really do social media marketing and can still sell, due to the small size of the convention.

And now, for some pictures!

There were rows of anime decal motorbikes and cars...

My loot :D

Only one floor and we already have this crowd... We can see the other floors from here too, and it's roughly the same.
25 January 2016 @ 10:51 pm
not too, but so  
  • Yet again we are reminded of why sexism and racism must be terminated at all costs: TS Eliot prize row: is winner too young, beautiful - and Chinese?
  • My uni friend visited the town for a game show, sadly it's a corporate-and-press-only event so I can't possibly go. But I got to hang out and talk about the game industry with him, so it's not too bad. I miss talking about video games with people who actually understand it inside out.. Nothing wrong with hobbyist/gamers but I need this sort of talk every once in a while. A serious need.
  • I have been using OKCupid to find friends outside of school (seriously, this actually kinda worked because I got to talk to people who share similar interests) and after I put a new detail in my bio ("I'm pro-LGBTQ and am a feminist.") the number of messages I got drastically decreased. Oh well, that worked well as a filter.
12 January 2016 @ 11:26 am
First Month in Taipei -- Milestone Achieved!  
 Belated but happy new year to everyone! I hope you guys had a wonderful winter break!

I already moved to Taipei on December 1st, but I thought I'd give myself a month to get used to things before doing the usual social media stuff. Hahaha. I'm kinda late by few days, but I thought I'd do it now while waiting for my laundry to dry.

Here are some things to summarize my first impressions of Taipei:
  • It's really hard to survive by relying solely on English. Despite language being a global language, Taiwan is really like a world on its own. Most of the youngsters don't understand English much either, because their English education only aims on making them pass tests rather than for practical use. Most cab drivers don't understand addresses/names of their landmarks in English. Even in the capital city, Taipei, it's even more common to know locals who can speak Japanese rather than English. So if you ever plan to visit Taiwan, better download translator/dictionary apps. It's better than nothing. On the other hand, though, it's the perfect environment to learn Chinese.
  • People are really nice and helpful even if you know zero Chinese. I have not travelled to other parts of Taiwan yet, but in Taipei, this is true. During my first week here I can barely other food without pointing fingers/bahasa tarzan whatsoever, but people are always patient, some locals would even step forward and help when they noticed that I don't understand the language. However, they are also more likely to make small talk and try to converse with you if they know that you are a foreigner. No harm intended by them, but it might get on the nerves for some people.
  • It's super relaxing. I have lived in Singapore for 4 years before I came here... The difference in stress level is blissful. There is a balance between the usage of public and private transports, so even during rush hours, the MRTs are packed but people will queue up nicely and nobody pushes around like in Singapore. It's also very rare to see people rushing on the escalators and stairs.
  • People sure eat a lot here. It's not that they are gluttonous, but it's just very amusing sometimes to see petite Taiwanese ladies gobble up a portion that I'd probably able to split with two or three other people. It's not even that rare to see, in fact I think 80% of the time they do eat that much... Can't blame them though, good food is relatively cheap and easily found everywhere. The only problem for me is the lack of hot sauce (I like my food spicy). But if you fancy western cuisine or fast food, it's relatively expensive here.
I'm also halfway through my first semester here. Learning Chinese (surprisingly) is not that difficult, because the grammatical structure is pretty similar to Bahasa Indonesia. I didn't have a very hard time trying to learn the characters either, maybe because I treat it more like drawing. My main problem is differentiating and pronouncing tones!

P.S I got hooked up on this Mainland Chinese drama called Nirvana in Fire, and I'm on episode 51. After I complete them (the final is 54) I'd like to blog some impressions on it because!! MY!!! FEEEEEELS!!!!! I'm on a hunt for my next wuxia though, it's a very good motivation for learning Chinese.
12 November 2015 @ 01:30 am
I turned 2x  
Yes, I still insist on keeping my real age a secret. (laughs bitterly) (Actually it's quite easy to guess from the cut text title...)
I'll finally come to terms with my age, but until then please let me be in denial. (A lot of people I knew online guessed older than I actually am, though, interesting!)

ALSO! The very first game I worked on professionally (Star Wars: Battle Pod) is celebrating one year this month. :)

My birthday was actually on November 9. But at the same day I also ordered birthday gifts for myself and I thought it's better to just keep things under one post, so I waited until I finally received them before I wrote this birthday post... It's image heavy, so I'm keeping them under the cut. ^.^

It feels like a perfect night for breakfast at midnight )

Here are some reflections and resolutions regarding this year:
- To apprecate and respect myself more. Self-loathing is still one of my biggest hurdles, and I teared up a little when a friend wished for me to be kinder to myself.
- To learn how to communicate better... Hahaha. What is social skill do they sell them in Indomaret*-- I'll work on it!
*note: Indomaret is a famous minimart chain in my home country, it's literally in every nook and cranny
- Hopefully I'd be able to make peace with the awful things in the past and eventually recover from my disorders. I'll leave it at that.

Anyway! That's about it about my birthday. I hope you all had a great Monday like I did! :>
08 November 2015 @ 02:48 am
the upcoming year in taipei  
Here is a brief plan of what I hope to achieve as I moved there:
  • Go cold turkey on social media. No, seriously. I want to take this one year to focus on things. I need somewhere to pour my thoughts though, so I'll most likely come back here every now and then. Besides, I figured that typing my thoughts down here is a lot healthier than venting things on Twitter. Maybe it's something to do with the formatting?
  • Learn Mandarin Chinese until I'm comfortable enough to hold a conversation, to be able to read manhua raws and watch wuxia series with not much hurdle. (This is actually a very high goal... if I say so myself... my level of comprehension now is buying food, asking for directions and complimenting pretty girls... yes....)
  • Research on Chinese history, especially on materials that can contribute to the comic I plan to make... (It's a story of a warrior woman and a songstress set around the Southern and Northern Dynasty or earlier, I would not really call it GL but it has the subtext, but I felt that the message behind it might revolve around feminism more than the romance)
  • Draw everyday... No matter how small/fast! Gotta hammer down the discipline!
  • Related to the point above, relearn drawing! Gotta firm up those shaky foundations!
  • Build a decent portfolio! At least something I'm happier with, with a better direction!
  • Get a job! Find a way to live out there independently!
I'm sorry for all! the! exclamation marks!! I am hoping that everytime I read this as I check and re-check on my goals, I would feel the spirit again... Since I'm actually a pretty spiritless person in real life. ^^;

I'll spend the rest of my time before I flew off to plan out on stuff I want to put in my portfolio, so I won't get lost/make excuses when I got to the real deal. :> I am quite excited for the whole year ahead!
01 July 2015 @ 03:25 pm
a trip around europe (pt 1)  
I went to travel around Europe with my family for 2 weeks! It's not really the ideal trip for me because I'd love to spend more time in each country and visit museums and historical places, but since it's a family trip I don't really have much say in decision making... We basically visited 9 countries in 12 days? (The other 2 days spent on transit). It was really tight.

the differences are lost )
13 April 2014 @ 02:01 pm
Summer Come Sooner  
Some updates about life:
  • I'll be finishing school in a week. Next Wednesday is my final presentation for a solo animation project, Thursday is my final submission date for all my other classes, I have no class on Friday -- after that it's only internship for 6 months. I was kinda bummed that my internship will start right after this semester ended (that means I will only have 3-day break after the long journey). But on the other hand I am kind of excited for the learning experience! (I'm going to be an environment artist, from the entrance test I think it's heavily texture-based so it's going to help a lot for my painting skills?)
  • I used to think that I just want to work for a game/in a game studio but after school, I kind of changed my perception on this? I am leaning more towards illustration and storytelling rather than the production process itself. I am planning to study in another school after I graduated from my current university, but some people I know are making fun of how my process is "going backwards" (because the next school I'm going to only offers diploma for Illustration).
  • My best friends (G and C) are graduating this month! I am very happy that G has scored a well-paying job in Tecmo-Koei. C is still going to complete his missing credits so I'll probably still seem him around in school (even though I am taking internship, I still need to go for the portfolio class). I am very happy that both of my friends have completed their academic journey! Ironically the company G is going to work for is a rival company to the one I am interning for. LOL.
  • I have been seeing a doctor for my issues and I think I am going to look for another one because he is just trying to provide me medicines instead of trying to get to the root of the problem. He even advised me that I should avoid my problems instead of facing them so that I won't have to deal with it. I don't know, maybe it works for other people... but to me, I think I should not do that because if I don't confront the problems, how would I grow stronger?

Some people I know on Twitter are already enjoying their Spring break. How about everyone else here?

Hopefully the Summer would be better!