140

Got a long day ahead of me tomorrow, but rather than thinking about it, I’d like to do a little reflecting.

Reading week went by so fast. Spent a lot of it playing league, sleeping, eating, and generally ignoring the whole ‘reading’ bit.

Went to the ROM with Alina last Tuesday. It felt really good to get lost in history, art, and really cool objects. I *love* dinosaurs. It’s fascinating to think about what the earth would be like if they never went extinct. Of course, we probably wouldn’t be around if so, but still. Dinosaurs. ‚̧

Well at least that’s one destination off my list. ūüôā

Kind of wish I had done more studying during the break, but I also understand myself enough to know that it’s almost impossible to find myself doing work when I don’t have to be doing work.

Bad habit. Working on it. Kind of.

If I do badly on tomorrow’s assignment,¬†I’ve got no one to blame but myself. Meh. I can live with that.

Found myself constantly refreshing the information page for the internship I really want for this summer. Got worried they weren’t going to be having any this year when I checked the interviewing period for last year. Sent an email to the person in charge and luckily, they responded with an indication that it will be happening this year. I know it’s bad practice to be placing all my bets on this one opportunity, but I really didn’t want to be doing research this summer. Worse comes to worse, I’ll go home for two months and take studying for my MCAT retake seriously.

Starting watching anime again recently – though I’ve been trying hard to stay away from ongoing series (they really take a toll on me via the constant anticipation and checking for new episodes). Did start watching Erased (boku dake ga inai machi). Liking it so far. Really hoping for the happy ending for the protagonist – he really deserves one. Will write my thoughts on the anime when it completes (only 5 more episodes according to the wiki).

Recently finished Gate (meh, too happy) and Mirai Nikki (main protagonist too cringefully stupid) and working on Another (scary, but interesting).

Also picked up Shingeki no Kyoujin (the manga) and The Gamer (the web series, tons of fun to read). The Attack on Titan plotline is so complicated that sometimes I get confused, but reading people’s theories on it have got me thinking and really wanting to read more. Apparently the author had decided to change his ending (which apparently was all the humans dying or something to that effect) since it was too depressing and unsatisfying to the readers. Will be interesting to see what he has decided to do in place of that.

I feel my inner otaku emerging after months of not really paying it much attention (and indulging in korean dramas in its place). Sometimes I feel like I should get some hobbies that don’t involve in lying in bed in front of a computer screen. Other times I feel like I should just be¬†me.

Maybe I should find a balance. But that’s never easy. Will try anyway.

Oh. One more thing.

>Insert reminder here to write about some of the games I’ve really enjoyed over the past year.

Will probably do it after I finish Danganronpa so I can lump all my gaming reflections together.

Nothing makes me happier than finishing a really satisfying video game and I’d really like to get some of those thoughts down so I can look back on it years later as a good dose of happy nostalgia.

Not just a game, but a way of life

People play video games for different reasons, reasons that are often inclusive rather than exclusive.

Some people play video games for the excitement and fun: to be in the shoes of their favourite hero, to support the franchise they love (*cough*pokemon*cough*), to experience the thrill of a first person shooter, or the satisfaction of advancing to the next level.

Some people play games for the people they’re playing with: for the cooperative and competitive spirit, to accomplish major feats or to be the best of the best.

Some people do it to relieve stress because sometimes the real world can be too much and we just need something to make us remember what it feels like to smile.

Some people play games for a living and others just don’t give a damn about games at all.
And that’s okay. Because games don’t have to mean the same thing to everyone and they don’t have to mean anything at all.

But then there are people like me who could never give it up. Because people like me have blurred the lines between video games and reality and as we play, we can no longer say “it’s just a game” as others do to downplay the significance of what we’re doing.

People like me live second lives on the internet: for us, playing a RPG is not just about the role play, but about living an opportunity we’d never be able to experience in our own lives otherwise; for us, the pixels on the screen are just as real as the people around us; and the memories we create with our imagination are just as important in our hearts as our physical experiences – the tangible and intangible lie equal in our minds.

We find solidarity, peace, and a sense of belonging in a community that didn’t even exist a couple of decades ago.
This is real life to us and it offends us when people question the way we live.

Yes, it may not seem productive and yes, we may not be great contributors to the problems of the world. But understand that our definition of world has already shifted.

And while some people would define success as something greater, I’d be happy enough with a Lv100 Jibanyan.

image

Tl;dr: I think I’ve gotten to the point where I can’t quit gaming. But don’t send help. I’m happy with this.

110

So I’m officially the Treasurer for the CSU (Chemistry Student Union). Yay. That NY resolution is achieved. So I can cross another one off the list. ūüôā

No one was running against me, so I automatically got the position. Which is both a relief as it meant I didn’t need to be anxious about public speaking and a disappointment at the same time as it means there were fewer people running this year. There was still a fair number of people there listening to speeches and running for other positions so it means we weren’t entirely unsuccessful this year. Maybe we just chose a bad time for the elections. Hmm.

I’ve been feeling really moody lately. Agitated. Irritated over little things. Part of me believes it is due to the fact that my period is coming around soon (it should have been here today…?). Another part of me believes it’s another part of a mental disorder I may have. A third part thinks that it’s just normal. Moods change constantly – it doesn’t necessarily have to mean a thing (could just be a shift in hormones, the weather, the air). But it’s been a good three days in which I’ve been feeling like this. At least I’m not sleeping for abnormal periods of time anymore. My internal clock’s working a bit better (meaning I’m definitely not depressed).

Spring is finally here. It was raining today. Felt bittersweet. Back home, it’d be like any other day. Here, it’s a rare occurrence and one that I Don’t particularly mind. It’s relaxing. Listening to the sound of the rain against the bus windows. Against the pavement. Against the roof above your head. Which is probably why I’m writing this entry (it’s not raining anymore, but the rain does get me into a writing mood).

On a different note, one I haven’t touched on in a while…I finished reading Liar Game. It was, for the longest time, my favourite manga of all time. It touched my psyche and intellectual interest in a way that no other manga ever had. I say, it¬†was, because the ending left me quite unsatisfied. I was necessarily unsatisfied with how it ended, but rather how rushed it was. It got me thinking, “I waited 5 years for the manga to finish, for this?”¬†The last arc was disappointing and lacked the same amount of finesse that Kaitani Shinobu-sensei brought to the other arcs. I understand that sometimes series are rushed to a finish (due to loss of fan base or pressure from the publishing company), but there was so much potential in the manga. I loved it so much that I guess I would’ve been unhappy with anything less than perfect – it was an okay end. Not the worst possible way to end it, but it wasn’t done well. Ugh. Thinking of all the series I abandoned five years ago and that are completed now and are waiting for me to finish, I’m feeling anxious. I don’t want to be disappointed again. I think the main one I’m concerned about is Dengeki Daisy. Another manga that blew me away six years ago. I¬†need to finish it.

To be perfectly honest, my compulsion towards wasting away my time on the computer doesn’t seem very healthy. I spend a ridiculous amount of time playing video games, reading manga, and now I’ve proceeded to an increased interest in watching TV shows (House, Survivor, Masterchef). I think I need to let go of everything for a while. Not necessarily right at this moment, but I think I need to pick a week for which I don’t touch any of these things. Live outside the computer screen for a while. I think I’ll start when my exams begin. See how it goes. Lessen my addictive nature because I know I am biologically prone to addictions (especially gaming ones).

I was all over the place with this entry.

But it feels right to me.

It feels like me.

Jumbled, erratic, contemplating, reflective.

Yeah.

I should get going.

106 – In need of a change.

I’ve only had about two hours of sleep so my cognitive abilities are quite low as I am writing this. I’m not even sure how I¬†finished a whole essay out last night (it’s complete BS so I feel sorry for the TA who has to mark it…except the TAs are on strike so who knows when that will be marked). I could’ve had a full night of sleep yesterday. Poor time management. Leaving my assignments to the last moment. It’s true that this is the case, but I just felt a lack of motivation¬†to do anything to prevent it.

I just haven’t had very much motivation lately. I can barely lift open the cover of a textbook before I get this hopeless feeling and have to put it down. I’ve been having too much sleep lately (other than last night). 12 hours is not healthy. I find it hard to get out of bed. Winters here are really harsh on me. I just can’t find my spark.

Been playing a ridiculous amount of Town of Salem lately. The people there aren’t always the brightest, but there’s this satisfaction when you’ve figured out the whole town out and you know you’re going to win. I’ve always been a fan of mysteries, curiousity being one of my greatest weaknesses. I don’t seem to be lacking in cognitive motivation in that regard,¬†I suppose.

Breezed through my chem lab today (the least stressful of them all) and am currently enjoying a maple fog latte that I thought was well-deserved for¬†getting through my two chemistry classes awake (I’m lying, I always treat myself to coffee shop drinks regardless of whether I have an occasion or not. My poor wallet, I know.)

For the next week, I think I’ll be as nice as possible to myself. Maybe if I make myself happy consistently, motivation will come along with it. Hah. It’s the spoiled girl in me talking. But I’ll give it a try.

I got my first choice of supervisor for NSERC. I’m happy about that. The professor in charge of the group seems like a really nice guy and the graduate students all seemed very friendly when I attended their seminar session. I hope I’ll learn a lot and be able to enjoy my summer a bit. Not so happy about the fact that it’ll be 16 weeks I’ll be stuck here. I think I’ll be able to go home for the last 2 weeks before school though. That’d be nice.

I guess all the people¬†I talked to through NSERC count towards my “emailing a faculty member and meeting up” resolution. So let’s just check that one off for now. Hopefully, I’ll be doing a lot more of that.

I am disappointed in myself for missing an ultimate game last Saturday. To be fair, I had a late Friday night and slept over at my boyfriend’s place so the trip to school didn’t seem quite appealing. Plus it was cold. Always blame the cold. At least I’ve gone to every other game so far. So that resolution isn’t completely butchered.

I’m not so concerned about making friends anymore. I think that if I just focus on myself and be kind and open to the people around me, I’ll naturally find people that I can talk to and connect with. Met a really lovely new friend when I was meeting up to talk with Dr. Nitz (who is an amazing professor from what I’ve heard and from my own personal meeting with him). We talked for so long (about chemistry) that I was late for work last Thursday. Opps. No regrets. Anyway, gonna cross that resolution off the list.

I’m going to keep trying to make a change in my life. I feel like as of university, the goal has always shifted every semester from “doing well” to “surviving”. I keep telling myself I’ll get back on my feet after I survive the next midterm. Before I know it, I’ve been “surviving” the whole semester. I want to thrive. I want to do well. And that isn’t going to change if I don’t make some serious changes within myself. Maybe I need to approach a new line of motivation. Give myself little rewards for every hour that I study. That sort of thing. I’ll try some things out this weekend maybe.

Got a three hour abnormal psych class now. As much as I love the material and how the prof is quite the character (in a good way, of course), I’m not sure I can survive with my 2 hours of sleep. Ugh. Stayawakestayawakestayawake.

Alright. More updates later. I don’t think I hit 10 blog posts a month for Feb. I’ll do more updates this month.

I can do this.

104 – Happy CNY [Super Blog]

This is going to be a long one. In order to kind of organize it a bit, I’m going to putting tl;dr’s in bold BEFORE each topic. If you hate reading, just the bolded sentences will give you a good idea of what’s been happening in my life.

I’m also going to start putting real names, when applicable, into my blogs. I want to be able to look back years from now and remember the people who helped me out at this point in life. So only good things about good people. Bad people or people I dislike will continue to remain anonymous. It’s to signify a realization that other people are important in my life – my life doesn’t only revolve and consist of solely myself.

This blog is a little Throwback Thursday to my ninth grade, when I used to do super blogs for my Applied Skills class on this blog. Was reading it again a few days ago. The way I blogged drastically changed in tenth grade (when I started this WordPress). I wasn’t innocent back then. Never have been. But I sure as hell acted it. Annoyingly so. But I was trying in my own way to be happy with all those happy faces. I was trying in my own way by being so awfully vague and bored with life. So I’ll never wish I was different person then. Without the girl in that blog, I would not be who I am today and although I am not completely satisfied with who I am now,¬†I’m happy with who I am.

Flashback aside, let’s start on a good note.

First and foremost, have a Happy Chinese/Lunar New Year my WordPress friends.

I think it’s about time I put in another doodle. As a continuation of my previous lunar new year doodle, have another one.

Untitled-1

Yes, yes, I know what you’re thinking: “Where did your years of art lessons go?” But nothing beats a good doodle. They make me happy. I doodle on my arms and notebooks to keep myself awake in class. They’ll always be a part of me. They give me courage when I’m feeling anxious. They make me smile when I’m feeling down. And hopefully, they’ll carry me through this awful semester of university.

I’m a little sad and lonely that I’m not at home celebrating New Years with my family and friends.¬†Red envelopes. Good food. Lion dances and festivals. I miss the celebratory atmosphere. By the time I’m out of this city and back home, I might be too old to enjoy the holiday the same way. What a sad thought. But it’ll be okay. I’m sure I can find new ways to bring the same joy back.

The weather has been awful here, but Buta’s been helping with that.

Buta is my new pig-shaped humidifier. I got it from the One’s at Pacific Mall (a place that feels like¬†an indoor night market). He’s my alarm clock’s best friend. And my hair’s too. It got really dry, windy, and cold this February. We had wind chills of -40 degrees Celsius. Not fun. And it makes my hair all staticky, dry, and annoying. Buta helps with that.

2015-02-19 15.04.19

Look how cute Buta is. Oink oink. ‚̧

Brings me back to the whole idea of Chinese New Year and the zodiac also. I was born in the Year of the Pig. Perhaps that was why I was naturally drawn to choosing the pig over the various other animal-shaped humidifiers (which were a bunny, panda, and goat).¬†¬†I can relate to pigs. They’re lazy, stubborn, but they’re also intelligent and fast learners. They can be super friendly and independent at the same time. I think I have what it takes to be a good pig. Some of my friends that are the same age as me really fit the description as well. I wonder if the zodiac and being born in a certain year really does have an influence on¬†your character. Probably not. If anything, it’d be the self-fulfilling prophecy (yay social psych!). Having knowledge that you’re like something can make a person act in a way to fulfill that. So for people influenced by the culture of Chinese New Year, may be more likely to have characteristics of the animal they were born in. Same thing happens¬†with horoscopes. It’s a cool thought though. Just because I believed in it and have celebrated it, it’s influenced me (even if it’s just minuscule compared to all the other environmental factors). The mind works in mysterious ways…that are sometimes not that mysterious.

I learned how true failure feels like.

I know that it wasn’t my best test. I’m abysmally bad at tests under pressure. It wasn’t good, but I couldn’t believe my mark. 15% on a mid-term. It was pretty demoralizing. Makes me doubt my chemistry major. I thought I had understood Inorganic Chem. I clearly wasn’t able to demonstrate any understanding. To be fair, the class average was 37%. But I’m still severely below that average. Ugh. I’m going to have to try harder I guess. You win some, you lose some. In my case, I lose a ton since I was sick for so damn long. I swear this city is toxic towards my health.

2.5 more years. You can do this. Won’t make my Med School dreams. But I’ll keep trying until I do (even if it takes me a few extra years). Don’t. Give. Up.

I’m finally recovering from being sick. I can recover from these awful midterms too, right?

Axe-throwing is really, really fun.

Went axe-throwing with the CSU and it was a real stress-reliever after having heard about my awful midterm mark. It was kind of like archery or darts in which you have to hit a target and try to get the bullseyes,but completely different because axes are so much cooler. It was really difficult to get it to land properly (i.e. not have it bounce off when the handle hit the target instead of the blade), but was really rewarding once you got the hang of it. Such an interesting experience – definitely something I would try again. Then again, I’m really clumsy…so it may not be the best idea to put me with a sharp blade again and again. Meh. Even though I was still sick while doing it, I had a great time. Got to know the other CSU members (especially Tanya and Alex) a little better also. That was super rewarding.

Axe-throwing!

Overnight shifts kind of suck.

I worked my first overnight shift last Friday (at McDonalds). Due to the fact that I was still kind of sick, I slowly lost my voice throughout the long 8 hours (9pm – 5am). It was extremely hard to stop myself from coughing (I still have a slight cough even now), but I tried my best since I didn’t really want to get any customers sick. I have no idea why I accepted that shift, but I like to be accommodating, so I guess that’s why. I had another shift later that day, but I was too sick to really work anymore so I had someone replace me for that. It was Valentine’s Day anyway. I deserved a break.

There were a ton of drunk, rude people that came in¬†between 2-3am. It was a really crazy mob. Makes sense considering there are lot of pubs in the area. Didn’t help that it was Valentine’s Day. Drunk people, sickness, and night shifts really don’t mix. Would not do again.

As for Valentine’ Day itself, I spent the majority of it resting in bed¬†and eating (with the boyfriend, of course). Being sick sucks.

Friendship can be awkward and amazing at the same time.

Went out for AYCE sushi with Mohamed yesterday. He’s honestly been a really good friend to me this year, helping me with my CHM238 (Horrible Inorganic Chem course I’m failing) labs and giving me advice about PSY240 (Abnormal Psych). So it was a nice treat to go out and eat together (away from school). We were supposed to go out with a couple other of my Chemistry classmates/friends, but plans fall through sometimes. Kirsten was too busy with Chinese New Year plans (totally understandable) and Alina was sick with a fever (I really hope I didn’t give that to her, I’d feel terrible if that were the case). The flu seems inescapable as the other friend we asked was also sick.

The place we went to, Spring Sushi, was extremely ambient – it did not feel like the traditional sushi restaurant. It felt like a classy lounge had been changed to a sushi restaurant: the walls were painted with Japanese-esque images, but the rest of the place was classy and the lights were dimmed. The place was wonderful really. We ordered through these iPad-looking things and the service was quick. It was awkward in that the waiter may have thought we were on a date (I already have a boyfriend), offering to take our picture. We accepted the picture, of course. I haven’t taken pictures with anyone in a long while.

The food was really good. I think I shocked Mo with how much I could eat (yay bottomless stomach). That was also awkward. It felt really nice to just talk about things and people and enjoy the lovely view (of this horrible city). I don’t have very many friends here (if at all any). Haven’t really made any close ones yet. It’s really hard. This city is really big. And cold. And lonely. And I’m not particularly a big fan of clubbing events or parties. But it’s okay. I’m doing just fine. I have people that help me out at school. I have people that make me smile at an awful university that threatens to kill my GPA over and over again.

Until the day I find some friends in this heartless city, I have video games.

Bastion is a very well-made and enjoyable game.

Having fallen in love with a trailer of the game a few years back, I finally got around to playing it a few days ago. I was pleasantly surprised. The combat style felt like a mix of Lunia and Rune Factory. Can’t wait to finish it and move onto Transistor (which the trailer has also made me fall in love with).

There’s nothing more satisfying than a good indie game with a solid story, beautiful drawings, and good mechanics. I love being absorbed in a world more mystifying than my own.

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Then again, I get easily lost in this world as well.

Life is hard.

But it sure is beautiful.

Even the worst moments will pass.

I’m finding my smile again.

Happy Chinese New Year’s, everyone.

94 – What would you do with your life if money wasn’t an issue?

Someone asked me that question the other day.

What would you do (as an occupation), if money wasn’t an issue?

I didn’t think twice about it and answered simply that I would still wish to be a doctor. Though in that case, it’s my GPA that’s the issue more so than money.

It really is something I want to do in my life. I know it’s a lot of work and it’s certainly going to be difficult and there’s no guarantee that I’ll even succeed. But that’s life. You just have to take things one step at time. And be happy – every step of the way.

It occurred me to just now though, that there actually may be things I’d be more inclined or more interested in. I mean, I don’t often go looking at research papers in my spare time nor do I often pursue things outside of class that would enrich my understanding of the sciences. I’ve always brushed it off as “I’m still young” which is only partially true. One of my friends in high school would often hours looking at x-rays or diagnoses, finding it to be of interest. It was eye-opening. You are never too young to get interested in scientific material; you are never too young for academia. Just when am I going to feel like “I’m old enough” or get to the point where studying medicinal or scientific research becomes an enriching hobby? Will I ever? I feel like this is something I have to modulate in my life. Maybe I’m just lacking a push to get me starting a whole new train of inspiring literature.

Personally though, I’ve always felt more drawn to artistic material. I find that scientific material¬†l interesting to learn, but never satisfying in the same way as a really good story. There’s something so exciting in expression, in feeling a connection with an author whether it be in a painting, a comic, a short story, a novel, a movie, or an animation. It moves me. And I don’t think I’ll ever stop loving the arts. It’s the little things. It’s the feeling you get when you take ten or fifteen minutes to admire a piece of art while you were just passing by; it’s the sensation that runs through your veins when you reach an epiphany at the end of short film or story; it’s the tears that slide slowly down your face during that tragic moment after a climatic plot; it’s the smile on your face after something “really, really good”. I could never give these things up.

And I know I don’t have to. Just because I’m pursuing a career down a different path doesn’t mean I can’t keep these things in my life. So I will. Forever and always. Because they fulfill me. They are very much a part of who I am.

I think, if money wasn’t an issue, I’d be a indie game developer. I’d make games that both children and adults could enjoy. Games that inspire. Games that give you a tingling sensation of fulfillment. Because that’s what they did for me – ever since I was a little girl. They brought into my world, and I’d like to pass that feeling on. Maybe someday, when I have the resources to do so, I can make this dream come alive – share my passion with other people. Even if it touches just a few people, I would feel satisfied.

For now, I need to focus on school. Study hard. Pursue my passion for discovery and quench my curiosity in¬†a different field. I think the key to finding my connection to a scientific field is to read. Reviews, articles, novel compilations of what’s happening in the world. I think, because reading is something I enjoy thoroughly, that I’ll find my inspiration in the words. Somewhere. Somehow.

———-

So. What would¬†you do? If money wasn’t an issue?

76

I’m *super* tired so this will be a fairly short post.

I’m a little worried about my transition back to UBC, but I know that whatever happens will happen and there’s little I can do about it (except maybe move back to Toronto) and¬†it is meaningless to worry about it. Nevertheless, it is human nature to worry. It could be problematic. It could be smooth. I don’t know yet. And few people are comfortable with uncertainty (and I’m not one of them!).

Bought two new indie games from Steam…although I probably should stop glancing at all the summer sales or else I might end up buying more than I’ll actually play. Video games are fun – they push the limits of our imagination and bring the imagined into reality (well, virtual reality, but reality nonetheless) and I’ll defend them to the end. It’s nice to just travel into another world and explore somewhere not tainted but the normality of everyday life. That is not to say that it’s not fun to just enjoy spending time outside, playing sports or relaxing in a cafe. It’s just a different kind of experience. It’s a lot like an interactive movie – you can control where you go, what you do, and the actions and decision you make along a guided plot. I’m a real fan of creative output – movies, books, art, and even video games definitely fall into that category. Anyone that thinks graphic design and digital art isn’t as valuable as classical painting can go shove a paintbrush in their mouth (though not really, don’t do it, some paints are toxic).

I’m starting a new job soon…which will be more or less my first one. It’s definitely time for me to gain some independence and some experience in the working world. I know a lot of people that hate work and only a handful of people that love what they do. And I think that’s a shame. You shouldn’t be doing something you don’t love. I know some tasks can be fun at first and repetitive after doing it over and over, but I think there is a certain satisfaction from working hard and becoming good at your job that no one can take away from you. It doesn’t matter how small your task is, if it’s significant to you then you’ve already won.

I’ve been having horrid dreams lately and I hope this trend stops soon. I want the nice sweet dreams to come back – the ones where I’m exploring some magical world or battling creatures alongside my friends. Or even a nice simple one with people I love and good food. I think maybe I’m just having a bad year of dreams…Hopefully they’ll be gone as the season changes into a full blast of summer. I love summer, it’s my favourite season because nothing feels better than a nice beam of sunlight warming up your skin. It’s comforting, inspiring and makes the world beautiful around you. Plus it’s the season for all kinds of foods…and cool drinks…

Be happy. Take hold of your own bit of sunshine and don’t let anyone take it away from you. ‘Cause we all deserve to wake up every morning with a smile on our faces, with a reason to live everyday to its fullest.