ephemeral

[adj.] —
lasting for a very short time.

The word ephemeral sounds really pretty, doesn’t it? Ephemeral is my second most favourite word. (The number-one favourite word will come out as the 8th post of A Hundred Words project. Probably.)

I fell in love with this word when I watched the 8th episode of my all-time favourite anime, Durarara!! (2010). The episode’s title was called Nankanoyume (南柯之夢), meaning Ephemeral Dream. It is one of the most beautiful phrases I’ve ever heard in my entire life.

I have a very keen affection towards fictional literature. My first encounter with literary works happened when I was 11 years old or so. I found a local classic mystery novel entitled “The Mystery of the Haunted Ship and the Poisonous Blowpipe” (translated) in my grade school’s library. An absurd title, but the story was adventurous and engrossing for me at the time. After that, my literary experience went on building up. I started buying novels, at first mostly fantasy, sci-fi, adventure, and romance (JK Rowling, Rick Riordan, Dee, Suzanne Colin, Veronica Roth, John Green) but as I grew up my genre preference got more serious topic to deal with (Dan Brown, Stephen King, Haruki Murakami). In my teenage years, these novels influenced me in many ways. I often kind of made up stories in my mind: creating my own universe, coming up with a bunch of unique characters, and adventurous story lines (pretty often romantic too).

These stories were often to come up as a vivid dream. They appeared so good and so real it lingered for long period after I woke up. Normally, when we woke up from sleep, the everyday memories would be flooding our neural circuits in our brain. But these dreams are different, they were so clear almost like it was there in my brain all along and imprinted permanently. I managed to record several of them in a form of writings, like these following posts:

The writings might not be depicting the feeling perfectly due to my raw and primitive writing skill. But these stories were crystal when they were dreams. Sadly all these dreams only lasted for a very short time. They were ephemeral. Now I am in my 20s. Beautiful vivid dreams comes far less frequent. I’m pretty sure I’ve had that kind of dreams every now and then. But the everyday mundane memories are just merciless. They don’t leave any room for blissful dreams once my senses come to reality every morning. Dreams are indeed ephemeral, like every other thing in this world: shooting stars and every wishes ever said, lit-up sparklers and the joyous feelings they bring, life, and everything.

P.S. I have one vivid dream that I haven’t put in a writing form. It was a breathtaking dream. I’m not telling the story in this post because it will be more suitable for the future A Hundred Words project called “celestial”.

(3/100)

delirium

[noun] ー
an acutely disturbed state of mind results in confusion and disorientation.

I suffer from fever quite a lot, mostly due to exhaustion, acute upper respiratory infection, or even simply mental stress. Like today, for example. I pushed myself too far in running yesterday and I went to bed as late as 2:20 in the morning.

When we have a fever, our body feels weak, lethargic, sluggish. Our breathing gets deeper and more rapid, that’s because our body tries to release heat. We get so thirsty because the evaporation gets more intense which results in dehydration. Not to mention, the muscles and joints pain. But for me personally, the most significant change when I have a fever is the cloudy mind. I can’t describe the feeling perfectly, but in general it feels like I’m trapped in the middle of this white suspension of an in-between gas and fluid. It’s not exactly called a state of delirium, but it definitely causes mental confusion. Unfortunately, it’s not the worst thing that can happen in fever.

The most unpleasant thing would be the vivid dreams. It’s not that kind of blissful dream. In contrary, the vivid dreams that appear in our feverish sleeps are nightmares. The nightmares vary from time to time and differ from one person to the others. I have two most frequent nightmare scenarios: 1) I am stuck or trapped in this endless net/web of black sticky strings with endlessly white dimension as a background. What frightens me is that the more I struggle, the more I feel suffocated. And 2) There is some kind of deranged and huge black creature that chases me through, again, an endlessly white dimension. The creature is actually more of an entity made of pitch black shadow trying to engulf me in it rather than a solid thing. The problem with dealing with vivid dreams is, of course, now matter how aware we are of the dreams, you can not just decide to get out of it. Is it not frightening to be trapped in your dreamscapes? Feeling like inception, isn’t it?

What does actually cause these terrible nightmares when we have fever? This explanation will be quite medical. Fever is caused by substance called Pyrogens. Pyrogens can be originated from outside our body (exogenous, e.g. from bacteria) or produced by our own body (endogenous, e.g. interleukins). These pyrogens mess up our central body temperature controller up there inside our brain, making our body thinks that the temperature around us is way much colder then it actually is. Beside messing up the temperature controller, the pyrogens also make our brain lose control of the limbic system. This part of brain controls human emotion. When we sleep, dream occurs in the very first stage of sleep called Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage. In this stage, normally the limbic system generates previously (yet subconsciously) determined dreams. But during fever, the brain loses control the limbic system and causes it to fall into a hyperactivity state which makes it no longer be able to control dreams smoothly like it’s supposed to. Therefore, vivid and scary dreams occur.

(2/100)

a matter of honesty

I say, people are hypocrites. People say they’d rather know the truth even if it hurts than being lied to. Well you know what I’m thinking? That’s the biggest bullshit in the history of mankind. People always say cliche things like I should always be honest with them they’re not gonna hate me for it. But believe me, no matter how nice and sweet I put my words together, you don’t want to hear honesty coming me. When I’m being honest, they always end up saying “You’re the meanest person I know” or “How could you say that to me” or “I hope someday you feel what I’m feeling right now”, and then they end up hating me, and then they tell other people how horrible I am as a person, and so on, and so on, the list of perpetual hates will go on until at one point (if they’re strong enough or they have guts) they will end up bullying me. (if they’re cowards they usually just keep on hating me in secret or badmouthing me behind my back)

So when you say you prefer:
1) knowing the real truth no matter how much it hurts,
to:
2) being lied to and pretend that everything’s fine,
you don’t know shit about what you’re saying. Believe me you’re gonna wish you chose the second option the moment you’re being told an honesty. People actually love being lied to as long as it keeps them happy. Don’t fuck around with me using your cliche “prefer a hurtful truth” shit. It may break you you’ll never recover.

flicker

[verb] ー
(of light or a source of light) unsteadily shine.

I like sitting on the balcony of the house I’ve lived in for the past 16 years. In a clear night, I can always see lights of the houses and building so far away on the hills stretched from north to south, at the east horizon. Looking north, I also see the far cityscape. Those flickering lights look peaceful and somehow give warm and fuzzy feelings in my chest.

It hit me that I love the word flicker. Not only flicker, though. I find several others, words, that I find uniquely attractive to me in an indescribable manner. That’s when I decided to start this… From this point onward, I will be posting those words along with stories behind them. I currently have target of a hundred words for this project to finish. Wish me luck.

(1/100)

life round here

Most of times, the life I’m leading on right now feels too overwhelming. It feels like something that I bid too high but can’t afford to pay. Sometimes, I have this strong urge to leave my life completely behind; my house, my family, my eduction, and just go somewhere else where no one knows me. I want to be entirely myself but also entirely new self. In other words, that new-self me will be me just being myself entirely. I want my happiness to not be defined by how much I possess or how fancy my job is. I want that new-self to feel enough with simple life and be endlessly thankful to what I am and what I have. That’s how I want my happiness to be defined by. The new me will have so many possibilities: I’ll probably travel a lot, meet a lot of people, be nice to strangers, help people, read a lot of books, have fun with kids, BE A COOK! (like my mother), have a ramen shop, et cetera. I want that despite no matter how silly, unpromising, my days I’ll be facing, I still feel enough, thankful, and happy of everything by the end of the day.

Sometimes I just want to leave, and do all that.

holocene

It’s a bar in Portland, Oregon. But also the name of a geologic era; an epoch, if you will. All the songs (in the album) are meant to come together as this idea that places are time, people are places, and times are… people. Most of our lives feel like these epochs. But, once I knew I was not magnificent. Our lives feel like these epochs, but really we are dust in the wind.

(Justin Vernon of Bon Iver)

all this and heaven too

And the heart is hard to translate.
It has a language of it’s own.
It talks in tongues and quiet sighs and prayers and proclamations,
in the grand deeds of great men,
in the smallest of gestures,
in a short shallow gasps.
It talks to me in tiptoes
and it sings to me inside.
It cries out in the darkest night
and breaks in the morning light.

But with all my educations I can’t seem to command it.
The words are all escaping; coming back all damaged.
I would put them back in poetry if I only knew how.
I can’t seem to understand it.

I would give all this and heaven too.
I would give it all if only for a moment that I could just understand
the meaning of the words.
You see, ‘cause I’ve been scrawling it forever 
but it never makes sense to me at all.

No.
Words are a language. It doesn’t deserve such treatment.
All of my stumbling phrases never amounted to anything worth this feeling.
All this heaven never could describe such a feeling
as I’m hearing words were never so useful.
So I was screaming out a language that I never knew existed before!

(Florence and the Machine)

December, please.

December,
the sun still shines bright in the sky;
clouds aren’t strong enough to darken the day;
rain comes late, it doesn’t pour hard enough;
the air is way far from being bone-chilling;
life runs too fast;
body is a train-wreck;
mind is muddy.
December ain’t what it used to be,
and it’s breaking my heart.
This can’t fucking go on.
Please.

秋のアニメ2015

PART I

This week was the end of of Summer and the end of summer anime as well. The summer line-ups were so fun I’ve already missed them. Let’s see… for summer I watched: Makura no Danshi, Gangsta, Junjou Romantica 3, Okusama ga Seitokaichou, Himouto Umaru-chan, Classroom Crisis, Aoharu x Kikanjuu, Durarara!!x2 Ten, Charlotte, Working!!!, Watchman Crowds insight, Wakako-zake, God Eater, and the continuation of spring leftover: Ace of Diamond 2 and Shokugeki no Soma.

I enjoyed them all but a lot of things happen along the way. For instance, Underwater fansub stopped subbing Gangsta after just 2 episodes. AboveSeaLevel fansub take over but so far they only released up to Episode 5 as we speak. I’m like, what?! At this rate I have no choice but to watch the Funimation version. The only Funi release I watched in summer was Junjou Romantica 3. I miss this series so much. But since nobody fansub it except Aarinfantasy, which takes forever to fansub and their video quality is not that good, I ended up with Funi. The similar thing happened to Durarara!!x2 Ten, in which Vivid cancelled fansubbing the series. I ended up with Crunchyroll release again. Let’s hope there’s someone out there kind enough to sub Part 3 this winter. As for working, I actually haven’t finished watching it because DameDesuYo is like a week late in releasing the show.

Okusama ga Seitokaichou was one of the best. The ecchi-romance story was so cute! I also liked Charlotte in which it ended beautifully I cried. As for God Eater, looks like it’s gonna continue through fall season. It’s simulcasted by Daisuki, which provides a very high quality video even just 720p. Such a feast for eyes. As for Shokugeki no Soma, I hope they make the second season because the story is really good. Last but not least, I decide to drop Ace of Diamond 2 because I don’t feel like watching it anymore. Too long and not quiet in the mood. In conclusion, summer anime line-ups were so fun!

PART II

Finally we come to the Fall anime line-ups. Honestly, my list this time is the shortest list ever. There’s actually nothing in this season, I repeat, nothing really excites me head-over-heels. Except… probably Noragami and One-Punch Man pique my curiosity just enough. But let’s see first. Here’s the fall line-ups.

  1. Haikyuu!! 2
  2. K: Returns of Kings
  3. Noragami: Aragoto
  4. One-Punch Man
  5. Owari no Seraph 2
  6. Rakudan Kishi no Eiyuutan
  7. Subete ga F ni Naru

Only seven. OMG seriously, I usually have more than 10 anime to watch for each cour. But even it’s just seven, they are those kind top quality anime (I hope).

PS. After waiting for the whole summer, the spring series Kekkai Sensen will finally air its final episode on October 3rd! This is one of the best anime/manga ever exist!

do we know ourselves, at all?

Recently I just finished reading Haruki Murakami’s “Sputnik Sweetheart”. There is this one paragraph in the beginning of Chapter 5 that caught my attention the most.

Given the chance, [people] are surprisingly frank when they talk about themselves. “I’m honest and open to a ridiculous degree,” they’ll say, or “I’m thin-skinned and not the type who gets along easily in the world,” or “I’m very good at sensing others’ true feelings.” But any number of times I’ve seen people who say they’re easily hurt or hurt other people for no apparent reason. Self-styled honest and open people, without realizing what they’re doing, blithely use some self-serving excuse to get what they want. And those who are “good at sensing others’ true feelings” are taken in by the most transparent flattery. It’s enough to make me ask the question: how well do we really know ourselves?

Most of people tend to do those kinds of things. They can be surprisingly confident about themselves when sometimes they do something entirely opposite of what they say about themselves. I’m starting to doubt myself whether I do these kinds of things unconsciously, too. Am I one of those people? Do I know myself, at all?