Thursday, March 14, 2019

Video Game Thoughts - No Flips, Just Switch


Last Christmas, I bought a Nintendo Switch out of impulse. I say it's out of impulse because I wanted to purchase a present for myself. I wanted to plan it out and wait for a sale after several months. I then remembered that Nintendo products usually never go on sale for one reason or another. I did have the option of buying it last year when I went to the Philippines but this was before any game that I wanted to play was actually released for the system.

I bought it at Toys R' Us because I didn't want to wait in a lineup. Toys R' Us locations here in Surrey at least are barren enough to be convenient. I nearly settled for the gray controllers but the sales associate got lucky and found one with the blue and red controllers so I was a happy big boy. Big boy, not soy boy. I didn't take a photo of me with my Nintendo Switch while I opened my mouth like a lunatic. The state of your social media, mate.


The thing about buying a new console for me is that it's a long term investment. I remember being optimistic about the previous Nintendo console that I purchased - the Wii U. A game console is only a powerful DVD player if it doesn't have the library of games that make it better. That metaphor instantly goes down to the drain pipe with the Switch since there's no disc drive to begin with so I don't even have that benefit. 


The first game I bought was Fire Emblem Warriors because of course I have to get a Dynasty Warriors-like game for my new console. I did the same with Hyrule Warriors for the Wii U. My knowledge of Fire Emblem lore is very, very limited since I'm not a diehard fan. I've only played Sacred Stones for the Gameboy Advance.

The next game I immediately bought without a thought is Pokémon Let's Go Eevee. Seriously, if I bought the Switch last year, I would have given up on it 4 months in because of the lack of a Pokémon game. So far, playing it intermittently, it's still a fun game and it's a child's remake of Pokémon Yellow. I just don't like how battling wild Pokémon has been replaced with the Pokémon Go version of encounters where you have to throw the ball to catch the wild animal instead of murdering it with your Charizard's flamethrower. Aside from that, it's been a fun game to play. 

A thing that I love about the Switch is the use of cheap microSD cards rather than some proprietary memory cards that are hard to find on Amazon like what the PS Vita had. I'm surprised it can use a 128gb card because I never really used one with that amount of storage. I then realized that to fill that up, I'd have to buy more games. My wallet says help.

Overall, I do see the Switch as a good successor to the Wii U because it has the tablet feature right. It's both portable and a easy to plug in to a TV using the included dock. It's better than a PlayStation Vita because there are actually more good games here. It's better than the Wii U because, unlike my best friends, it's not a disappointment. It's definitely worth it but I do wish I waited for a sale. Ah well, it's worth it.

Friday, March 8, 2019

Under The Mental Tide

There's a song I've been listening to a lot lately. It's called "Under The Tide" by CHVRCHES and it resonates with me on how it can be about my mental health and insecurities.


I know the background of a song is about a friend of the band who was terminally ill and sadly passed away. The thing about music is that it can have different meanings to the listeners too.

"I'm watching you run, run from the sidelines
Take in a breath, fill in your lungs
Keeping you alive
No fear, I'll be your eyes
I'll be a lifeline
And if I can be, I'll be your strength
And it won't be long now"

The first thing I'd think about with the first line is jogging and walking around the city because that's how I exercise nowadays.

To get less literal with it, it's like my mind watching me do the things that I'm doing to be a better person. 

It won't be long now if I keep it up where I'd eventually find happiness.

"Head up, head up
Keep holding, holding
Your head up, head up
Keep holding"

It's like my mind is telling me exactly that - "keep holding your head up, junior." It's me trying to convince myself to be optimistic, even if sometimes I don't follow my own advice.

"If you can see, and you believe,
Why are you so scared
But if you don't care, then why are we here
And what do you have left?"

I can see that I have a chance at happiness. Asking a girl out who's way out of my league? Yeah, that emotional scar caused by Krisly totally scares me sometimes.

If I "don't care" about the women I like, then why am I still here? Just to be miserable? What would I have left? Just a whole messenger bag full of regrets and What-Ifs.

"Don't you take another step
Away from here
I would go anywhere with you
What a lie
I'll break down
But you will never see"

I've had breakdowns, I sadly admit. I've had internal ones where I'm on the edge of tearing up if someone asked me how I was doing. I try to keep my mind off of it by working more.

Because it's fun seeing a girl you liked for so long... holding another man's hand. Then you think that's fine because he was there first and it humanizes you; it makes you realize that there are other people in the world with their own soulmates, if you believe in that kind of thing, and she probably found hers. You realize it'll never happen to you because... no one looks at you. No one is obligated to like you back so you just stay under the tide and try to drift away. And you just keep waiting. Maybe someone else would come along and you can ruin that friendship too.

"Tell me are you happy?
Are you really happy?"

This is my mind asking me that same question which I really can't answer honestly sometimes. Sometimes I pretend to be happy but that's just someone trying not to fall asleep in the wheel. Sometimes I'm genuinely happy but I'm a master of self-sabotage so it never makes sense.

"Stay under the tide
Stay in my eyeline
Looking ahead, there is a chance
Wherever it all ends"

I always think about how there is a chance at happiness where I'll end up. It's not like I can see the future or anything. If anyone could legitimately see a concrete future, they'll either be very happy to do so or just very miserable with that responsibility. Yet I wouldn't mind seeing where I end up.

"Slowly cross off the days
That they say you can have
Try to retie the ties
That you will leave behind"

I know I've ended friendships with people who were of no benefit to me because of their dry replies and I don't regret that. However, I do regret not catching up with people who have been nothing but nice to me and I do want to reconnect with them. I've had less than stellar friendships turn into way better ones the second time around and I'll always appreciate that. Sure, sometimes they end abruptly because those people decide to nudge you out of their lives but at least the journey that led to the rejection was fun for the time. Yet those friendships are all I'll have anyway.

Well, that was a fun ego trip and making a song about me. What's next?

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

I have to go back, I need to go back

I have to go back home, I wanna go back home sooner or later.

Because that's my thing, right? If I start to like someone, I just leave the country until I get over it? I did that with Krisly, right? So that must've worked. I did that with Elisa too, and my friends called me out on it. "Spending 1K dollars to get away from your feelings" as they said.

And now that I can't get over Daniela, I wanna go back home. I wanna go and take another 17 hour plane ride to the Philippines where I'm groggy and miserable and cranky and older than everyone else now and I have no one. So I'm in a plane full of people and I'm still alone. I'm not Alain de Botton where he met his girlfriend in "Essays in Love" in a flight.

I wanna go back home where people know me and for sure I won't like anyone because I'll just be in the country for a finite amount of time. Can't like someone for less than a month. Shut up.

I got way more Tinder matches in the Philippines for some reason anyway and they weren't really my type of girls. The type I like actually reply to messages and hold a conversation, something apparently rare nowadays. "She replied? WITH MORE THAN ONE WORD? Bloody hell, that's impressive!" rather than them replying dryly with "Mhm" or "LOL" or "I don't know when I'll ever get the time."

I wanna go home. I don't wanna see Daniela on the downtown train. I don't wanna see anybody. I don't wanna feel anything for anyone for that matter.

I don't have to worry

Oh I don't have to worry, right? I don't have to worry about saying the right things, trying to get past a land mine of eggshells. I don't have to worry about doing the right things too, taking time out of my "busy" schedule and making time for someone to share how miserable or wonderful our days went. I don't have to worry about that.
I don't even have to worry about my friends not liking some girl they just met if I ever bring her to the Philippines to basically relive my 2018 vacation with someone else. Yes, including Indonesia. I don't have to worry about my family liking or not liking this girl l. I don't have to have to.
Maybe I'm just dwelling on something that I should've let go several months ago.
I don't have to hide, disguise, or deny it. I really don't have to worry then. Right?

Art Appreciation Self-Portrait If I Won The Lottery

I rummaged through more files and found an unfinished paper that I had for Art Appreciation class back in UST. Long post ahead, by the way.

I dropped out of my Art Application class back in 2012 because I was too goddamn broken. That's when my depression started and I didn't even wanna set foot in any class, let alone a class where I was supposed to express myself somehow. Anyway, I salvaged some of the paper and the idea's still there. Might as well post it here.

At first, I wanted to do something similar to "500 Days of Summer" and call it something else but I didn't know how to pad that out to 20 minutes or so. It would've involved Nirvana'a "Heart Shaped Box" in one way or another. Another idea was lip syncing to "Stay" by Mayday Parade. However, if given the money and resources, I thought of one where it's over the top and captures everything well.

The song "How Come You Don't Want Me" by Tegan and Sara was the theme song of my 2012 basically. I was miserable. Sheena and Krisly broke my heart. I had a falling out with "friends" of mine, which was for the better, in hindsight.

I'm as open as a book blasted by a shotgun USUALLY but I didn't really want to do this whole elaborate art project on how a few girls broke me on the inside. Especially Krisly because goddamn, how do you make that into an art project?

Anyway, the video would start with the song playing as I get off the tricycle, because that's when I started using public transit, albeit taking a tricycle ride solo.

"I can't say that I'm sorry for getting so ahead of myself / I can't say that I'm sorry for loving you and hating myself"

The video would start with me walking from Lacson street into the campus while I lip sync with the song. I know Tegan and Sara sang the song but I could've always used a male cover.

As the song goes on, it's all a continuous shot with different things getting in the way. A group of Commerce students cross the screen. An ice cream man sells ice cream in bread rolls to Engineering students. A security guard clotheslines a jejemon fuckboy. I get handed a plush pink puppy and instantly hand it off to a group of CTHM friends of mine. This would go on from Lacson to Lover's Lane until the AB building. A bit of random things that can be seen in UST at the time.

Now we get to the good parts.

"One day soon / I won't be the one who waits on you"

As this part of the song plays, four ninjas surround me asking I reach the Plaza Mayor. Like a fight scene action movie, of course, they charge one at a time. I hit one guy with a punch; hit another guy with a back elbow; superkick the third guy. The fourth guy charges and I catch him with a spinebuster. The logistics of taking a bump on concrete isn't very feasible but hey, it's for a project.

"Someday soon / I won't be the one who waits on you"

The first guy who was hit with a punch stands up then I kick him in the gut and give him a Pedigree, on concrete nonetheless.

There's a bit of a musical interlude before the next chorus starts which gives me time to fix my jacket, which I would obviously be wearing because that's my signature getup in UST.

"How come you don't want me now..."

The ninjas all slowly run away because the scene's over. It's meant to look phony.

As I reach the AB building, the rest of the chorus plays on a crescendo and I see dozens and dozens of students on the sidewalk walking from the Dapitan entrance, pass the AB building entrance, and towards the plaza mayor.

So it's two lines in this parade of students. One line is full of dudes in AB uniforms. They're walking beside alternating girls in AB uniforms and CTHM uniforms. So it's one guy walking beside an AB girl followed by another guy walking beside a CTHM girl.

"Tell me why you couldn't try, couldn't try and keep me here."

When the last lyric is sung, I turn my head to the left and there's no one around. No one in the pavilions. No one walking on the sidewalk. No one nearby. It was all in my head after all. Cut to black.

Why this song though? Well, several reasons. The title alone is self-explanatory. "How Come You Don't Want Me" is a question I asked internally. After being bullshitted by Sheena, who the AB girls in the video would represent, I constantly asked that question because for once, I didn't like her for her looks. I constantly asked it again when Krisly, who the CTHM girls in the video would represent, decided to not be a friend anymore and ask "WHY DOES EVERYONE FALL IN LOVE WITH ME? UGH!"

That fight scene would symbolize my frustration at how things are going - It's all shit and it's always been shit. It's reminiscent of the music video for "Misery" by Maroon 5, but without the disturbing domestic violence on Adam Levine.

That parade of AB dudes walking with AB and CTHM girls alternately was to signify my jealousy on what I wanted. The idea came from a scene from the show "How I Met Your Mother" where Ted gets out of his apartment building and there's dozens of people under yellow umbrellas walking about. The yellow umbrellas signifies what Ted is looking for - his future wife. The huge line of couples signifies what I've lost and these are just phantoms or hallucinations. No, I didn't steal that from Metal Gear Solid V, which was released 3 years later. I don't need to create a time paradox here.

The ending of the video is basically me telling myself that "No, it's not gonna happen. Those extravagant fantasies won't happen and never will happen. Yes, you CAN like someone but she's not obligated to like you back, asshole."

That's about it. I can only create art if I had a whole bunch of money for therapy.