Things I Love Thursday

This post was written while consuming large amount of 90s boybands’ music. But seriously, they just have some really damn catchy music. Plus they keep me awake at work.

It’s been pretty chilly in the mornings so hot showers are awesome. And I mean really hot ones, the kind that steams up the mirror and hot enough to cook a lobster. Yeah, it’s probably really bad for the skin but damn, I just can’t resist turning the heater up and just soaking in the hot water. Which may be why I’m usually late for work… oops.

I updated the Android OS on my phone the other day and I was pleased to discover this neat little function called ‘Do Not Disturb’. Basically it turns off all notifications – sound, vibration, blinking LED lights. If you want, you can put certain contacts on the exception list, otherwise you’ll never be bothered by other people spamming you on group chats and what not.

I signed up for GISHWHES, or y’know the Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen, last week, in a sort of fit of impulsive spontaneity, without actually thinking it through too much because my thought process was pretty much… let’s do this because I can and because I want to prove a point to myself. Yes, the two halves of me are having a cold war of some sort. using my physical body as proxy.

Korres was still having their sale, so I ended up buying a couple of perfumes, it was 50% off because there wasn’t any boxes for these, and I was like, eh, good deal, with or without the boxes, let’s just buy them. Plus, they were easy enough to wear. Easy as in, good for daily use. Actually, all the perfumes in my collection are easy to wear at the moment. I don’t have anything overly heavy, even though I’d love to buy By Terry’s Terryfic Oud, which was intense and magnificent, and I wished I had the money to buy it the last time I smelt it.

Origin may be pretty useless, as compared to Steam, but hey, they were giving away The Sims 2 Ultimate Collection for free, so of course I’d grab it. Aaaaaand promptly spent too much time creating people and making their lives awesome and miserable at the same time. I’d be a totally whimsical deity.

I also spent an entire weekend replaying Dragon Age: Origins, because I’m too cheap to fork out like 90 bucks for DA3 ;_; EA games, why you gotta be all money-sucking. But yeah, DA:O is a good game, but I’m always dreading the super long Orzammar quest. It’s a tad too tedious!


words matter

I was listening to this when I decided my mind dumped this into my head for no apparent reason.

when people tell me that they don’t listen to the lyrics when they listen to songs, I secretly raise an eyebrow at them and wonder why don’t they just go ahead and pop a classical or instrumental album into the cd player then, because why on earth wouldn’t the lyrics play a part when you’re listening to someone singing? what on earth or the words there for then? to give the singer a job? ffs, there’s a reason why someone has written the lyrics to go with the music, and most of the time, it’s not there as a filler.

lyrics make up a narrative, it brings a different aspect to the music that is written. sometimes the mood of the music matches the lyrics, sometimes it doesn’t, and when it doesn’t, you’ll be left to think, why did the musician choose to match an upbeat melody with such melancholic words? is the nuances of the song related to the music or the words? maybe the singer is singing about one matter but meaning something else through the lyrical quality of their voice.

songs are ultimately made of two components, the lyrics and the music, and they’re so entwined together that a really brilliant song might seem incomplete without the words to go along or the lyrics would sound terrible if you read them aloud without the melodic structure and rhythmic quality of the song. singers are supposed to bridge the gap between meaningless words and empty sounds, I think.

poorly written lyrics put me off more than bad tunes, personally, if the lyrical content was nothing more than what you’d expect from a middle school child, then I’m out of there, but I think I can be more forgiving if I didn’t like the song for its music. generally, I think I’m more of a ‘words’ person, because I tend to focus more on words than even images or sounds. reading is perhaps second nature to me, the first thing I do when given something new, is to read the words on it, even if it’s an image, there’d be something to read most of the time and if it’s a sound, I’ll be concentrating on trying to decipher the lyrics or the words that are spoken.

Things I Love Thursday

Sometimes you need to unwind after a day of feeling anti-social and exhausted, and well, Jamie Cullum just has a lovely smooth voice. It’s Thursday again, where on earth is time speeding off to?

So I just added a whole bunch of shit to my wall, and you should care because… idk, you’re here reading my posts, you tell me. *crosses arms and taps foot* A couple of things came from friends, some from my purchases/Kickstarter related and of course, Alice Nine flyer and a Blaqk Audio card signed by Davey Havok & Jade Puget :D

I had a lovely birthday dinner with the family last weekend~ most of the time was spent coaxing the niece into eating her dinner, and I managed to have a pretty decent conversation with my second brother. It’s not that we have a bad relationship, we just somehow don’t communicate with each other despite living in the same house.

Also, I was a little surprised that people I haven’t spoken to for ages bothered to post birthday wishes on my Facebook wall, but that was nice.

Next up, Korres haul~ In less than half an hour, I just spent a hundred bucks. Shop owners love me, seriously, because I’m the type who goes into a shop, buys whatever she wants without hemming and hawing for too long.

Anyway, the GSS is still going strong, since Korres is having their ‘Buy 2 Get 1 Free’ promotion. Ended up buying my facial wash + a backup because I’m afraid it’d go out of stock again and I’ll have to wait for over 6 months to get another bottle. Also showergel is necessary unless I want to smell like Dettol since that’s what is stocked in my bathroom at the moment. Plus body scrub because my old one (from the first Memebox I got) is running out. The store assistant threw in a couple of samples, doubt I’ll get around to using them because I already have a working routine.

Anyway, after buying my stuff, I met up with Kim and Yan Ting for dinner, which was awesome because I haven’t seen Yan Ting since the last time I bumped into her at the bus stop outside NUS, which was what, 3 or 4 years ago?! Whoa…

One of the Kickstarters that I backed a long time back has finally reached me! Here’s my set of D6 from Artisan Dice. It comes with a magnetised wooden dice box, which was a pretty neat touch.

Isn’t it just so pretty~ I’m a little afraid of spoiling the sharp edges though.

And the second half of this list are videos for all your entertainment purposes (totally over-selling it, duh.)

Weird Al has new songs out~ and while I hated Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines because it had stupid lyrics, Word Crimes is hilarious~! (or maybe I’m biased because it’s about grammar.)

Aaaand, if you know me, you’d know that I’m a huge fan of the wuxia genre because sword fighting and honour and idealism, isn’t that just awesome? (though sometimes the sexism can be annoying, but I suppose it’s the time period…)

But anyway, Demi Gods and Semi Devils, focuses on the stories of 3 different characters. There’s the burly warrior, Qiao Feng, who is the leader of the Beggar Sect, who discovers that he’s not actually Han Chinese, but a Khiten, which drives him to figure out his parentage, only to be thwarted by a mysterious figure over and over again. His reputation is tarnished by this stranger and also because casual racism is a thing back in medieval China.

The second character is Duan Yu, a prince from Dali, who sneaks out of his home because his father was pestering him to learn martial arts. In a turn of events, he ends up learning martial arts because it was necessary for his survival and he falls in love with this girl and follow her around basically.

The last character doesn’t show up until quite late, I think. I mean I’m at episode 15, but he hasn’t appeared yet. He’s a monk with a mysterious past, if I recall correctly, since I watched this with my brother about 10 years ago…? (Yup, this was filmed in 2003.)

Lastly, looong weekend FTW!

social media and distance

Don’t get me wrong, I like my social media well enough (or at least I’m active on Twitter, I have a Facebook account, I still refuse to get an Instagram), but sometimes social media makes it a little hard for people to put a distance between a creator and their creation.

What am I talking about? Well, basically, it’s like finding out that your favourite celebrity or writer or whatever famous individual you prefer, is fallible, like all normal humans are. I’m not saying that I don’t think of them as actual people, but without social media, you wouldn’t have realised their flaws because you wouldn’t have been close enough to have any sort of interaction with them, or see their thought processes or even their little rivalries with other famous people. The advent of social media and the fact that information is so easily accessible makes it very easy for one to find out whatever it is someone has said, and even if you don’t follow the person, well, information still travels, like a bad bout of pollen if you’re allergic. And then it’s worse if there are sides to take, and you want to think of both people as respectable individuals, but you’re unsure of who is in the right and who’s just fanning the flames… I mean, you don’t want to think that one of the people you like is a giant lying bastard, right? D:

So basically, there should be a some sort of a distance between a creator and their fans, so that we don’t start to judge the creator’s works because of who they are, but instead on its own merits. *sigh*

on mortality

This past week has been depressing: we have the ever ongoing conflict in the Middle East, thanks to Hamas and Israel. So many unnecessary civilian deaths, and it’s only a ticking time bomb because there’s nowhere for the civilians living in Gaza to escape to. Sure, Israel tells the civilians to evacuate before attacking, but where the heck do you think they can flee to when Gaza is a freaking tiny piece of land? The Palestinian-Israel conflict was a topic covered in JC history back in 2008/2009, and you know what, I don’t foresee any changes to it by any time soon.

Next, we see Putin being the terrible person that he is, washing his hands of the tragedy that is the recent MH-17 disaster. Because really, Putin, if you give deadly weapons to a rebel group, they’re not going to be using those fucking things to create rainbows and shit, they’re going to shoot at people and kill them, so yeah, blame Ukraine however you like, but it doesn’t change any facts. Urgh, I have a fondness for Russia honestly, but it can be such a… terrible place sometimes.

I’ve seen too many posts about these two events over the past week and I guess it’s depressing to see how the world around you doesn’t change much even as time passes. We’re supposedly living in the most peaceful time in history, but really? This is peaceful? Sure, we avoid wars nowadays because it’s less profitable to wage war (too much civilian deaths, disruptions to the economy, infrastructure damage etc), it’s not because we’re less war-mongering in terms of our mindsets. It’s always the ‘us vs them’ mentality, and I think that’s as useful as three squares of toilet paper when you’re having a terrible bout of stomach flu.

It’s upsetting because you know it’s probably not going to change anytime soon. Things may worsen – the Middle East is such a tumultuous place, where tensions are high between neighbouring countries and also within each individual country. Also, Putin… *sigh* well, he’s not going to just stop here and make peace, nope, fat hope.

Sometimes I think that we’re not focusing on the larger things, c’mon, instead of fighting another, can’t we do it Cold War style and go for a space race? You know, explore other planets and make them habitable, and instead of separate continents, let’s just live on separate planets or something. The other impossible dream I have would be that an extra-terrestrial threat will force all of us to work together and forget our differences.

Ah, what a depressing way to remember that you just turned a year older yesterday and you’re one step closer to the grave already.

ah, guilty pleasures.

So… this is a thing. Ahem, dudes cosplaying as princesses and being all sassy, I’m so there.

Don’t ask me their names, I have no idea who they’re, other than that they’re collectively known as IM5, but other than that, I don’t actually have any real interest, I just think they make hilarious videos.

Weird but funny interpretative (?) dance of Let It Go.

All that sass, yo.

Ariel wins best exit ever.

Things I Love Thursday

This has been a strangely hectic week, even though I didn’t have any time to stay late at work, I had enough social engagements that has left me sleep deprived.

Anyway, Thursday is here, and we know how that goes.

I think I mentioned Erutan’s Kickstarter for her new cd, The Court of Leaves, in a TiLT post a while back, and I got the physical cds a few days back~ It comes with her previous album, A Bard’s Side Quest, which contains covers from different fandoms, mostly video games. She also included some stickers and a quick thank you note.

The cd also comes with a little booklet

She has some very gorgeous masks and costumes, and a wide variety of musical instruments.

Score and lyrics, for the musically inclined, I guess.

She also did a pretty cover of the duet between Hiccup’s parents from How To Train Your Dragon 2~ :D The view is just lovely.

I’ve only watched the movie version of The Addams Family, so I thought I’ll check out the original. I’m only a few episodes into the first season, and I hope there’s more screen time for the children, especially Wednesday, because I love the character in the movie. She’s so snarky~ :D After watching the tv series, I think Carolyn Jones makes a better Morticia, even though Anjelica Huston has that impenetrable air about her as well.

Met up with a bunch of friends this week, which was fun, though tiring. It’s really pretty great to meet up with some people which you haven’t spoken to in a year or so and realising that the conversation still flows, and you don’t feel as though there’s a chasm between the two of you.

But also, mainly cafehopping with the clique~

We headed for ‘dinner’ at Butter Studio first, where we ate a lot of dessert and basically made me vow to stop eating all sweet stuff for like a month. But seriously, there was simply too much sugar in my system, since I had crepes and we shared some chocolate tarts and a red velvet cake.

Then we walked over to Tiramisu Hero~ No food because we were still pretty full, but I had a cider, which was pretty tasty.

I had the Summerberry, which was sweet with a hint of sour.

Aaaand here’s my early birthday gift from the clique~

No swatches yet because I’m afraid of ruining such a lovely palette.

Things I Love Thursday

This post was brought to you by the interwebs, as in without the internet, I probably wouldn’t have much of a list :D

So… for no real reason, I’ve just decided randomly to start watching Ultimate Spider-Man, because well, it’s cute? At least some parts, where the art just becomes chibi-ified for humour. It reminds me of Getbackers, when Ginji, one of the main characters, will turn into his chibi form and drape himself all over his partner, Ban. Man, I do miss the Getbackers series, even though the art is kind of off-putting, too many half naked ladies in unnecessary provocative poses. D: It’s… weird, okay.

So far, I’m only a few episodes into the first season, and I hear that there will be a third season sometime this year, which is pretty cool, I can’t wait to catch up with everything. The only thing that kind of irks me are the voices, I mean, I get that they’re teenagers, but sometimes they have really whiny voices… >.>

Kimberley, who has just came back from her grad trip around Europe, got me this tote bag from Shakespeare and Company, a Parisian bookstore. I’ve been using it for my piano classes, since it’s big enough to hold my music file and a couple of books (since I almost invariably end up at the library after teaching.)

I’ve also been binge-ing on Mental Floss, narrated by John Green. I mainly watch it because it’s comprised entirely of lists and trivial facts, you know, the random stuff that you can pull out in conversations and make people think you’re oh-so-knowledgeable about everything… Yes, I have a thing about seeming clever. And who doesn’t like knowledge? People like Hitler, I bet.

Another educational Youtube channel that I enjoy is C.P.Grey, who doles out videos on a near-monthly basis about the most random of topics. I’ve recently started listening to his new-ish podcast Hello Internet, even podcasts and I do not go well together, mostly because I don’t catch everything at one go on the first listening.

Despite the whole controversy over the banning of the children’s books over at the NLB, it is heartwarming to know that many people are against book burning, and that not everyone is apathetic, when it comes to saving books. Even though it may be futile, I like to think that we’re making some sort of progress, in which people are beginning to realise that we really have to speak up when it comes to the issues that are important to us.

Personally, I know nothing about politics and law and the flimsy line between libel/slander and making snide comments about the government. Due to my lack of knowledge and my lack of desire to delve into the issue, I turn a blind eye when it comes to policies and news about how the opposition are mistreated, but books? Books are a passion that I get; books are important and useful and my stance is unflinching when it comes to censorship. I don’t think censorship is a good idea and I don’t think anything can truly be stifled.