Blogger Appreciation Award: Saying 1 Positive Thing About Myself

     Thanks to Spooky Red Head (please do check out her blog!), here’s another award post. Usually award posts tend to be Q&A sessions and this one turned out to be a bit different. Well, by its nature, asking to write something positive about yourself is also a question, but a comparatively open one, so all the better.

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Neat Blogger Award

     Neat Blogger. Nice. I certainly hope that doesn’t imply any association with being a NEET. Not that I qualify for that.

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My Reasons Why Award

Hello, everyone!

     On this quite ordinary day let’s talk about ordinary things and an award that isn’t like others. Usually blog awards end up in one way or another simply meaning “I like your blog”. It’s not the case with this one as it concerns more fundamental things and deeper issues than viewer count.

     It’s not that apparent in AniBlogging community but take a look for example at reddit, more precisely a subreddit where people share screenshots of manga and anime that remind them of their own life. Especially a month (or something like that) ago you couldn’t browse it simply because about 2 out of 5 pictures were extremely negative: “I’m trash”, “Why is life so unfair?”, “I like suicide” and similar ones. Well, I’m not against dark humor and picking fun at stuff characters say as it might be as good entertainment as any but when it becomes an ocean of despair, I’m getting more and more worried.

How about no?

     Sure, life isn’t always fair and you can’t win every time. I get that there’s some satisfaction in posting a picture where a character says “I’m hopeless” and seeing it upvoted because many people feel that way. Feeling miserable is a completely natural thing, the problem begins when such people see that there’re many despairing individuals like them so that becomes the norm. “I’m feeling down? No problem, everybody’s feeling down, too”. Well, it is a problem, and while getting a few laughs is the best it can do, it can do far worse.

     This problem of course isn’t necessarily peculiar to anime community alone. It’s an issue of the whole humanity. A bold statement, sure, but, always residing in negativity may bring the worst outcome.

     Sure, I’m no psychiatrist who could get into a person’s head, understand his issues completely and tailor a perfect solution. I’m just a guy living in a country whose suicide rate is in top 10 in the whole world. Yeah. Of course that doesn’t mean that my words are especially valid. It’s just a sad fact that I can’t ignore, even living a happy life.

     And that’s where the Award comes in. A fellow blogger kimchisama created it after some very unfortunate and saddening experiences. It’s probably the best to give the scene to her:

      This award is going to be about making your reasons. Your reasons why to keep living – to keep going. Maybe at this point you don’t have an issue with depression and that is okay. Sometimes it is still good to think of all the good things in your life. Maybe you think that you have nothing and you can’t make a list of reasons. I’m going to tell you now that THERE IS NO SMALL REASON. Dig deep. Deeper if you must. There is always a reason for you to keep going and living and breathing. Maybe one of your reasons to live is that so in the morning you can eat bacon. That you will stay alive just to eat bacon again. To me this isn’t a small or silly reason. It is true to yourself and if you are every going through a rough time maybe the smallest reason will reach your heart.

As with all the awards, there’re some rules:

1. Mention the person who nominated you (thanks for that!)

2. List 13 reasons why you keep going/living.

3. Nominate 10 or more people to give their reasons why.

4. Use the picture that kimchisama created.

Not a very amazing list, but here are my reasons to keep going:

  1. Friends and family. Well, it would be hypocritical not to start with this one since I’m surrounded by terrific people.
  2. Family history. I’d love to dig deeper and learn about my ancestors. That’s a very long-term objective since I’d have to sit through lots of boring papers written in terrible handwriting in languages I don’t really know but it’s fascinating to know your roots. Knowing the names of only one pair of my great-great-grandparents and their professions (a roadman and a housekeeper by the way) isn’t satisfying enough.
  3. Summer house. A place where I’ve spent all my summers since being born (except one, as cliche as it sounds). It might be only a habit but I probably wouldn’t be able to survive without completely turning my brain off for two months and doing manual labor there. It sometimes may be a pain in the ass but at the same time gratifying to have a quite place in the middle of nowhere with a little lake nearby and several apple trees (among others) whose fruits are of such heavenly taste that you can’t find in supermarkets no matter how hard you search. Yeah, you can say that my spiritual animal is Holo.
  4. Lilacs and lupines. I’m not the biggest fan of flowering plants in general though I do appreciate greenery. Still, there’s something about that violet (or especially white) color (and the scent in the case of lilacs) that fills all the space and reminds you that summer is just around the corner.
  5. Anime and stuff. Yeah, what else did you expect? My watchlist isn’t getting any shorter and the same can be said about the list of manga and LNs. There seems to be an uncountable amount of stuff worth experiencing – great stories, great characters and stupendous animation.
  6. AniBlogging. Yes, what did you expect? watching anime is one thing but being able to share opinions and enter meaningful discussions is another. I’m very happy that this community is so mature and respecting, and that’s only a couple of reasons why I love being a part of it.
  7. Reading. At this point I’m not the most avid of readers but in the back of my mind there always stirs a notion that the ocean of great literature is endless and  I should take a good swim in it. And I’m still eagerly waiting for Winds of Winter to be published. Stay healthy, GRRM.
  8. My piano. I had some experience learning to play it and even if my technical skills aren’t nowhere near as good as I’d like them to be, it’s fun to be able to play something you enjoy listening to. Even if I may butcher the original intentions of a composer, it’s always a joy to sit down, turn off your brain and let the fingers do their job.
  9. Traveling. Another long-term goal. Probably very long-term because at this point I’d rather stay where I am. The problem is that I easily get car-sick or bus-sick after traveling for about 1,5 hour and that’s neither a period of time to get anywhere nor an encouragement to to. I hope that psychology might be one of the reasons why and I may be able to overcome that eventually. I know that there’re so many great places to visit everywhere. But sadly not now.
  10. Studying. To be frank, among my classmates at Uni continuous lack of motivation has become sort of a running joke and I’m a bit confused that I’m more or less satisfied about everything. I’m probably lucky enough to have found a field and place where I’m comfortable enough and eager to keep learning.
  11. General interest. Well, I just think that these times are interesting to live in. Science progresses by second, many innovations are introduced into daily lives. Sure, people with power sometimes behave like kids that are unable to share a playing ground but I have faith in humanity, its brain power and compassion rather than in its selfishness.
  12. Inertia. It might sound weird, but one of my reasons to keep living is because that’s what I do already. I’m sort of a person who doesn’t like to change things too much and at least to me it’s easier to concentrate on what I must do now and simply do it without overthinking it too much. I don’t consider not living an option. When that inevitably comes, I’ll probably stay dead for more than enough time, and while alive, I still have stuff to do. As one of my colleagues at Uni sometimes says, don’t rack your lungs (yeah, not brain) and do what you can.
  13. I’m feeling lucky. No, it’s not related to Google. It’s simply the fact that when I think of it, there’re countless people in the world that are far less fortunate than I am. Just look at this list – countless things I have that are completely meaningless knowing that hundreds and thousands of people this very second are dying for ridiculously easily avoidable reasons like thirst, hunger or war. I have done nothing to deserve everything I have, it’s just a pure coincidence that I’m able to type this and not lie  dying because of, say, malaria or AIDS. What can I do about it? I think at least be conscious about the situation and make my life as fulfilling as I can.

Nominees:

Derek

Fueled by Smiling

Keiko

king dylbag

Kyra

Olga

Scott

Prattle

Shokamoka

Yahari Bento

     I hope each and every one of you (tagged or not, sorry about that then) will think of many more reasons to keep going and appreciating life as it is. And as I said, I’m no psychiatrist but if you ever need a spare ear to talk to, I can offer my both.

My name in TBW Tag

     It’s been quite some time but I haven’t forgotten it and I’m very thankful for kimchisama for tagging me. I think various tags and awards are not only fun but also very healthy, as at least for me it provokes to get out of the comfort zone and think and write about things that I would probably never write about otherwise. Of course, a few lines of different content isn’t much but it’s better than always writing the same thing over and over again.

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One Lovely Blog Award

     Well. It just so happens that I usually don’t do these award posts. Why? I already have enough material for quite a few posts and everything of course is way behind the schedule. Well, I don’t have a strict one but still there’re lots of things I’d like to have already written about. Such award posts pretty much since the beginning of this blog  have been finding a place in the heap of things that can be procrastinated, but you know the saying – there’s nothing more permanent than temporary… Yep, I’m guilty. Very guilty. But here I am, and here’s an award post (though it’s still after about 2 weeks of being nominated. Procrastination is in my blood…). Why? Somehow Keiko‘s (thanks again – very much) questions looked very intriguing, and I guess I shouldn’t look for a better way to get back to paying more attention to the community. There wouldn’t be much joy in blogging without the community so unused opportunities to strengthen it isn’t the wisest thing. For everybody else who has awarded me in the past, I’m sorry that it’s not your post that (hopefully) got me back on track, and I’m very grateful for every single nomination, but it is as it is.


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3 quotes in 3 days challenge – Day 2

      Hey everyone! it looks like my schedule got better of me after all. It’s a bit ridiculous to say that I continue the same challenge after a pretty long gap between the posts but oh well, better late than never. So, this day’s quote is

“It’s the job that’s never started as takes longest to finish”  – J.R.R.Tolkien

     It’s probably no wonder that I chose something from the writer whom I strongly admire, but then it may seem strange that it isn’t one of his more famous quotes that involve such serious and complicated concepts as death, destiny, war or peace. I think that of course you need not to forget such things and it is possible to philosophize about, say, destiny for many hours coming up with very different and interesting ideas and encountering many different worldviews. Yet Tolkien is not only about high, proud and majestic things. The Lord of the Rings starts as a The Hobbit finished – with a fair share of fairy tale aspects that, even if diminished later on when the story became darker and solemner, from time to time emerged as a cheerful spark of hobbit-ness.

     This quote, taken from one of such moments that bring warmth to complicated things, that no hobbit is accustomed to, speaks to everyone and I think is quite useful to remember. You can look at it with a mindset of “yeah, you don’t say” but it coming from a man who managed to work a highly demanding job of a professor, to take care of a family or four kids and at the same time to write one of the most influential books of a century among other literary work, it becomes so much more stronger. It’s usually very hard to start something you are not that passionate about and procrastination at least for me can burn many hours that I could spend more efficiently if I would just start the thing as soon as possible.

     On some level the quote can also be treated as a differently phrased Latin sententia “Carpe diem” (that sadly is the predecessor of YOLO) with the meaning to take every opportunity you get and do what you can and especially if you must. I’m just a procrastinator as probably many others are more or less, so once in a while having something to remember that can encourage to get on with anything that needs to be done is welcome.

Anyway, not always everything goes according to keikaku, I mean plan, as I wrote in the first post of this challenge, but if something must be done there’s no better way to than just start as soon as possible and get done with with it. So, dear colleagues, cherish your time and get motivated!

 photo AzuDa_zpsqax9xtyl.gif

Now let’s move to the Nominations part:

MOKA from monomania fantasia

I invite you to:

1) Pick 3 quotes for 3 days and write what they mean to you.
2) Nominate 3 different bloggers with no repetitions each day.
3) Thank the person who nominated you.

That’s that. Thanks again, Olga from Middle-earth Reflections!

3 quotes in 3 days challenge – Day 1

Hey everyone! I got encouraged to try this challenge by Olga from Middle-earth Reflections and I’m very grateful for that. I doubt that there are many people in the anime community that also have strong feelings about J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings his and other writings from the same universe but if you do or just have some knowledge about it, please do check out her blog! And now, let’s get going.

“Only entropy comes easy”  – Anton Chekhov

 For those of you who are not that familiar with the man – Chekhov is held one of the most prominent Russian short story writers and playwrights of the second half of the 19th century. His writings have always attracted me as very sincere, analyzing lush emotions of various people and portraying life that went on in his time. You just can’t remain calm and not immersed as you read about different lives of sad or happy, tragic or even completely normal  people as every one of his characters appears very much alive, humane and moving by their actions and thoughts.

The quote I chose uses the term of entropy and for those of you who aren’t that familiar with it – it basically represents the idea of disorder. The higher the entropy, the more mess there usually is. Technically it’s not as simple as that but you got the idea – unwashed dishes have much more higher entropy than orderly arranged ones in a dryer. I  also must mention the second law of thermodynamics (as complicated as it sounds) – in an isolated system entropy tends to increase. It just means that spontaneously a glass can shatter but it will never come back to its initial form with no external help. Pretty intuitive.

Now coming to the meaning of the quote – you probably clearly understand the essence – everything is this world tends to break down, decay and cease to be ordered and you have to put much effort to achieve anything. When you think of it, it may sound crushing – the Universe itself is trying to negate all your attempts to do anything and it’s no wonder that we constantly need to eat for us to retain our ordered bodies, or, to think more comically, it’s very natural for your desk to become a mess in no time or to lose a sock from each pair – it’s embedded into the laws of nature. Nothing is easy and it requires much energy even to keep things as they are now. Is it discouraging? It may be but nothing said the life will be easy. I think when you make something you can be even more proud of it with the mindset that you gained a small victory against the Universe. Everything is bound to break but isn’t it wonderful that it is possible to withstand this pressure? It’s very easy to become lazy and unproductive no matter what you do but come on – you with your own existence have denied the law of everything breaking down and each thing you do should bring happiness of achievement, of mastering yourself and making your being meaningful.

I don’t know if these thoughts full of physics stuff were of any meaning but to myself they bring some pride and joy that I’m able to, say, escape idleness and write a thing or two about something I like and possibly get my voice heard and make some impact on someone that reads my stuff. Well, that’s the end for today’s philosophical babbles.

Now let’s get to the next part – the Nominations:

Lethargic Ramblings
Karandi from 100 Word Anime and
Kyra from KYRA DESU YO!

I invite you to:

1) Pick 3 quotes for 3 days and write what they mean to you.
2) Nominate 3 different bloggers with no repetitions each day.
3) Thank the person who nominated you.

So that’s that for today. Thank you again, Olga, and I hopefully see you all tomorrow!

The Versatile Blogger Award

versatile-blogger-award1

I’m  very delighted to be able to celebrate being nominated for the Versatile Blogger award. I feel very touched and humbled that the stuff I write is able to reach other people.

Huge thanks to Kyra who runs a very inviting and interesting blog KYRA DESU YO! and here mainly does an in-depth analysis of various names of anime characters. As someone who hardly knows any Japanese (besides some obligatory b-b-baka and nani?!!!!) I’ve been having a very fascinating experience being able to understand what the names of the characters mean, especially since the names are not usually given at random by the creators and knowing their meaning can give just another touch to the character of, well, the character. Thanks again, Kyra!

Well, personally I don’t consider myself a very versatile in blogging as now the Attic usually is filled with weekly thoughts about the episodes of currently airing anime and an occasional (yes, I would very much like to become much more consistent) review of a full show or film. Well, I’m quite happy to write everything I do but I hope to escape from these types of posts a few times in the future if all other stuff I have to do beside watching anime will be going well.

Anyway, as the rules of being nominated require, here are some random facts about me:

  1. My real name (that being not Aldael) in my native language is composed of two words meaning “hope” and “mind”.
  2. I usually tend to be quite pedantic – a double-check or a triple-check (and afterwards still worrying if everything is alright and done as precisely as possible or in need of some correction ) in many aspects of life is just how I am.
  3. I have absolutely no idea how to dance. Proper dancing is beyond me (maybe I have two left legs or something) and for now I have no intention to amend this. In casual parties I just end up doing something between copying others and moving with the mindset of “whatever”. Now that I wrote it I’m embarrassed.
  4. I found anime only about 2 years ago. Before that I managed to stay away from it (somehow I even didn’t find things like Dragon Ball that interesting) thinking that it was just something weird, Japanese and there was hardly anything of it that didn’t contain ecchi or hentai, even if I didn’t know the terms at that time. Another thing to be embarrassed of.
  5. I have finished a music school with a pretty random specialty of singing in a choir. I’m familiar with other stuff like music theory and playing the piano as well so it’s quite natural for me to be interested in the anime (and not only anime) OSTs even if I don’t think I can articulate well enough every idea I have. Because of that anime like Nodame Cantabile feel very special to me.
  6. Related to the fact above, my taste in music is rather versatile, encompassing various artists from different time periods – some classical composers (the influence of the music school), some contemporary ones like Phillip Glass or Susumu Hirasawa (Haiiiiyai Forces!!!) and a range of numerous groups – Asian Kung-Fu Generation (OP of Erased), Nightwish, Within Temptation, The Killers, Of Monsters and Men and others.
  7. Probably the biggest my hobby besides anime involves everything associated with J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings and other material concerning its universe – I’ve even forgotten how many times I’ve read the books or watched the films. As a side remark, I also immensely enjoyed reading A. Sapkowski’s The Witcher series (you know, that of which the games were based of) and to a slightly lesser extent G.R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire (I guess every other person in the planet has read it or watched the show by now).

And finally and probably most importantly, some nominations. I’m afraid I don’t read enough blogs to be able to nominate 10 people but as I gave 7 facts and 7 is a lucky number,  I hope 7 should suffice. So, I nominate these great bloggers for the Versatile Blogger award:

  1. MOKA from monomania fantasia – (sadly) the blog’s currently on hiatus but you should definitely check it out for some impressions on not that mainstream anime or beautiful excerpts from the OSTs.
  2. kindle from Nichi Nichi-chan – a blog that has improved very rapidly as far as I remember to a level that I can only dream of  for now. It always impresses me with keen insights no matter what kind of post I end up reading.
  3. Lethargic Ramblings – a rather new blog that can already boast of mastered style, personality and diverse content – first impressions, lists, rants…
  4. Karandi from 100 Word Anime – I know she has been nominated before but who deserves it better than the most frequent commentator on the Aldael’s Attic whose really productive writings span from series and episode reviews to top 5s and beyond.
  5. Aria Cross (and the Team) from Fujinsei – I simply don’t know what kind of stuff you can’t find on the blog plus Fujinsei Blog Carnival is a great place to find about other anime bloggers.
  6. Ani-Dotes – not that active for some time now but with all hopes in the future it will produce more of the stylishly formatted, well-organized and entertaining content.
  7. Artemis form Otaku Lounge – the blog probably doesn’t need any more recognition but I can’t help it  – since refinement of style and a multitude to various otaku culture related themes covered instantly speak of years spent writing it.

Honorable Nominees, according to the Rules, please do:

  1. Display the award
  2. Thank the person who gave this award (and include a link to their blog)
  3. Share 7 things about yourself and
  4. Nominate (preferably) 10 bloggers

Now I feel guilty about nominating only 7 people. It would be nice if someone would name a blog or two that could use a reader like me. And please don’t be shy – self-advertising is something you can’t escape in this day and age.

Anyway, thanks for everyone who has come to see the Award Ceremony and especially for those who from time to time find a desire to ascend Aldael’s Attic  – this is yours award as much as it is the blog’s – no written thing can have a purpose without someone reading it. So yeah. See you all next time!