Haruka's Diary
Chasing After Rainbows: January 2012

26 January 2012

587th post: Language "mode"

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Having come across many things in many different languages and culture, I got exposed to several languages. Being exposed to at least more than two languages, I saw that words could not be translated directly, different sentence structure, requiring context that needs to be understood to be able to translate properly, and things that are just not normally used.

When thinking of what to say in a language, it would be different in an another. However, language proficiency and knowing the words to use does affect what to say.

If you're seriously thinking of learning a new language, don't just learn "hello" or "where is...?", learn how to say things like "The rental rates seems expensive" and understand what the reply would be.

I've experienced the language barrier while I was in Shenzen (深圳市; a Chinese city north of Hong Kong). Every sign there is in Chinese, and there isn't any other language besides terrible English. Roughly being able to read some Chinese characters, I noticed that some things are omitted or are phrased wrongly in English. Just cross the border at Luohu (罗湖) and you could see the difference. You may notice the name written as Lo Wu (羅湖) on the Hong Kong side, but that's the Cantonese pronunciation and in traditional Chinese form of the same name. Do not expect the people there to understand the languages you are fluent in, including English.

(I didn't realise until writing midway through this, but that image on the right gave me an idea for the 6th story.)

22 January 2012

Alternate Dimension (Part 82)

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No matter where you go, you can't really escape people mentioning things relating to the recent major earthquake, which happened in mid-march, when there is no school besides the graduation ceremony of the final years. This was a month before the start of my college.

I felt the quake happening at that time. Although the buildings around me seem to be structurally unaffected by it, those closer to the epicenter and the eastern coast suffered larger damages. What I'm more worried about are the children of one of the supervisors, Isaka-san, as they live in a town quite close to the cost, and not too far from the epicenter. The husband, however, is fine. Isaka-san could not contact her children as communication lines are either jammed or cut off, and what's more worrying was that her daughter mentioned the day before to her that she was heading to a neighbouring coastal town to buy some seafood.

According to the data we have, that town in question has been annihilated by the tsunami, which struck around the time her daughter might have been there. As for her son, however,

13 January 2012

Disorientated Feelings (Part 44)

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To confirm that I don't need to see my husband to keep my sanity, which has not happened recently, they isolated me away from them. I could bring anything I wanted in that time except images of him, including those on electronic devices. To further remove the possibility of seeing my children and Saeko being also counted as seeing my husband due to them also having looking somewhat like him, their photos too. Since there's a chance that my children would visit my parent's place, I can't live there too. I have nothing but my memories to remember what they look like.

At the same time, Hatsuya Research has modified Saeko's breasts into providing breast milk with exactly the same properties as Yuko's so that the newborn baby could still be breastfed by Saeko should my husband want to turn back into a man. My husband gave the reason for turning back as "it's more fun to keep being transformed into a woman than staying as a woman". It wasn't long ago that my husband used to hate it, but I guess having to go through it as frequent as like doing daily chores like brushing your teeth makes you love it. Well, you have to in order to be positive at work. He has been hoping to get posted out of Mizuho, but being informally the person in charge there (form being the only one who is assigned to wear a supervisor uniform while colleagues wear normal ones, that doesn't seem likely.

Sure women are attractive things, but being one myself means that I have to worry a lot about my appearance and helplessly give in to actions from men. It's like society has made females the passive gender as they are simply mostly on the receiving end: receiving flowers, engagement, being attracted by, and so on.

From a man's perspective, seeing a beautiful woman doing things (even normal ones) would make them lost in thought and gets attracted to her. The problem with this? I'm the woman in question, and there's nothing I can do about it. I always get stares from ugly men because my own body is attracting their attention without me intentionally doing it on my part. My breast gets stared at more than the rest of my body by men, even more than my face. The sad part is that I can't hide the shape of it or make it flat, no matter what I wear over it. If I'm wearing a skirt, my legs are the next part of me they would look at. It's like these parts of me attract men more than my own face. Come to think of it, because girls don't grow much in body height, voice hardly changes since childhood unlike men, and the playful-like behavior, women appear to be like children who never grew up.

07 January 2012

585th post: What is a good anime to me?

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(I somehow felt like writing this here instead of the anime blog)

K-On! (Spring 2009)

Dual! Parallel Trouble Adventure (Spring 1999)
Excluding anime that seem to go on forever (eg. Bleach) or targeted at children (eg. Doraemon), I have watched new anime, since 2006. Of course, I had watched some older ones like Kahimashi, Cowboy Bebop, and Lain.

I never noticed it unless I looked back (for anime since 2006) or watched older ones, but character design and background details in general has improved. Or it could simply because more recent ones looked better in widescreen in HD over the older lower-definition letterbox standard.

The early 2000s was a transitioning period for animation studios for doing each frame using computers over a cell sheet. To the viewers, this means that higher detail could be inserted, and scenes with things moving would not have everything else on the scene to be "moving".

Character designs can sometimes be timeless or be specific to the general era, but you can generally tell. The differences between the original Kanon (Winter 2002) and the remake (Autumn 2006) is an example of a big improvement of design. Not just visually, but how the story is executed too.

Death Note (Autumn 2006)
The main thing that tells you about an anime is its opening and ending, and the segments surrounding it. While I do agree that Death Note is the odd one out with the use of (very) heavy metal music, the best ones to me are ones that do not have scenes from its episodes, something that you wouldn't dread looking at many times. Another one, which I don't mind if it's not used, are the way the text of the credits are displayed being anything other than the generic one. Speaking of generic, I noticed that the animation of the ending of some anime, like Hanasaku Iroha (Spring 2011) and Durarara!! (Winter 2010), seems to have very minimal animation. I'm also not a fan of having new ending song in every episode, though I don't mind those once-in-a-while things that reflect a sad atmosphere (eg. the death of a major character). As for those that use a song that has been used in several anime, it's a mixed bag. However, songs like Secret Base: Kimi ga Kureta Mono, is the most often, and the most emotional, one I know of by singers used in Kyou no Go no Ni (Autumn 2008) and Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae wo Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai (Spring 2011).

Kill Me Baby (Spring 2012)
Nowadays, anime having an opening some minutes after it started instead of the very beginning seems to be the norm. From my observations, those that don't, or always have a flashback, or have something that repeats every time like Yakitate!! Ja-pan (Autumn 2004), generally don't have a good storyline. On the opposite end, anime that do not have an opening (most commonly the first and last episode), replaced with credits in its place, or have the main episode overlapping with the ending in certain episodes are quite good.

It's hard for me to decide what is a good anime between a slice-of-life anime with simple design with playful schoolgirls in a school as main characters (eg. Nichijou), or lots of action with serious men and highly detail things (eg. Gundam series). Generally, it's easy to tell a bad one, and I seem to find a lot of anime with little content in the middle of the series falling into this group. It's also hard for me to watch one with a good story, but not-so-good in the character design part.

In the past, I used to be able to tell the kind of anime that would be produced just by looking at the name of the animation studio. Before Puella Magi Madoka Magica (Winter 2011), I used to think that animation studio Shaft would be only be producing slapstick-like anime like Sayonara Zetsubou-sensei (Winter 2008). Madoka was a big surprise as they suddenly have moe characters, and a plot that's a big departure from what they (or those with magical girls) normally have. Actually, not really sudden as they produced Bakemonogatari (Summer 2009) in between: still have elements typical of earlier Shaft anime, but a bit more to the serious side.

Angel Beats (Spring 2010)
Speaking of animation studio, I heard that Angel Beats could have been produced by Kyoto Animation instead of P.A. Works as most of the works written by Jun Maeda (Canon, Air, Clannad) are usually produced by former. The reason possibly being that KyoAni was already busy producing K-On! at production time.

What would the the most ideal anime for me?  Protagonist being a smart girl that should not be ugly or extremely sexy. She is a serious girl who could accurately tell if she's lied to, which you can't tell unless you paid attention to her tone of voice. These days, character design seems to be based on that of K-On!. Of course, that won't happen, would it?

01 January 2012

583rd post: New Year 2012

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Happy New Year everyone!

I was hoping that 2011 would be an uneventful one, but as you are aware, there are so many events taking place more than the previous years combined. It was also the year where I travelled to quite a number of countries, and got more active on twitter. You could say that it was a fun year.

If you're wondering about why this is post number is 583, and not 584, remember that the numbers are based on the order I created them. That means that the previous post (S2P81) is technically the 581st post that was first created before the (numbered) 582nd post.

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中野区, 東京都, Japan
帰国子女 英語能力は堪能。趣味はアニメや漫画やプログラムコードを編集。通常、あたしの小説を英語で書いてです。Grew up abroad &travelled to different countries. I write my own fictional novel on my blog.