MARCH Articles

I’ve been wanting to do this project for a long time. My Goodreads READ-shelf shows I’ve been too into Japanese comic books recently (so far 58 books out of 60 are comic books lol) so I thought reading articles in my spare time will even things out.

How am I planning to execute this? 
I had considered having a monthly wrap up for my blog posts until I realized that my blog count depends on how often I post…which is erratic in nature. Considering the amount of articles I read a month, I cogitated the idea of summarizing my thoughts for all of them instead of reviewing them one by one. Think of it as a Youtube Beauty Guru doing a monthly haul, or having her Monthly favorites, or empties video (yep, I spent my time binge-watching Youtube videos too!) so lo and behold!

Without further ado, here are the articles I read this month:

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/apr/23/why-we-read-authors-and-readers-on-the-power-of-literature
I’ve always thought that it is important for a writer to read but anything I have to say has already been said-er-written here.

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20160908-the-language-rules-we-know-but-dont-know-we-know
http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20170313-the-secret-language-you-speak-without-realising-it
BBC is a great site where people can read substantial articles and the links I have written above are awesome examples. I have always been intrigued by language structures be it Japanese or English and I’m quite sure a number of languages out there out to be examined as well. Still, not everyone can be a philologist.

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20160912-the-dark-side-of-roald-dahl
I have written a review on BFG (here) not knowing that there is more to it than my poorly written feedback. It didn’t come as a surprise though that literary works come in different shades –or what are literary criticisms for!

https://www.buzzfeed.com/newu1671/80-signs-youre-an-intj-cz0z?utm_term=.rymRARvaA#.sj7mvmAwv
Not exactly an article but I still love this list from Buzzfeed. I posted something about getting INTJ in some personality tests (you can read it HERE)but somehow answering them triggers a compulsion to get the answers ‘right’. This list however almost convinces me that maybe, yes, I am… Still, it won’t hurt to know for sure.

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20170303-eight-words-that-changed-the-way-we-think
I love the idea that there are eight words that changed the way we think, to be honest but the crowding of words in the article made it rather difficult for me to just pinpoint which things I have to focus on. I’m thinking whether it is because my vocabulary has to be further honed by the writer, or the idea was to intimidate people because the article was about words. In short, it’s verbose. Then again, it’s worth sharing. And it has Muggle in the list, that’s enough a reason.

You may have noticed that I read a number of articles dated 2016 but hey, these posts are about articles I have read in a month, not the articles-written-in-a-month that I’ve read (does that make sense?).

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I am Not That Jazz (or how I see myself as an INTJ)

Putting a label on one’s personality is quite hard. With each passing day, we grow and develop our characters influenced by our society, the things we read, we see, and we feel and these factors help us perceive things in different angles and respond to them accordingly.

Knowing this, you might think I don’t like taking personality tests. On the contrary, I do. I spend a number of hours trying to figure out what kind of behavior I actually exhibit and it feels good to learn different ways of analyzing one’s character therefore having different labels that are not at all contradictory to one another.

I took another exam featuring Myers-Briggs to verify something that has been bothering me for quite a time. I had taken three similar personality tests from different sites a number of months ago and two of them had yielded the same result. Note that I had taken them at different times as well. Lo, and behold, the most recent exam I took made the score 3/4.

INTJ

I typed INTJ + gif in Google images and found responses that seemed natural to me at times including this:

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Most likely my personality at the workplace has affected my responses to those exams–and the fact that I take exams well (lol). Other factors include language and time. Certainly the amount of time one spends on answering a personality examination endangers its accuracy due to his subjectivity. Say, there’s this question:

Regardless of what other people say, deep down I feel that I am… *
Pretty normal
Kind of weird

I wouldn’t choose NORMAL–heck no. There’s nothing more despising than being categorized with people who don’t know their own purpose in life. Then again, should I say I’m weird? That will be weird. ^_^ So it took me a long time to consider what I should choose.

Somehow a part of me thinks that this maybe the result of how I want to see myself. Do I act like this when I’m surrounded by people who know me well? Surprise! I don’t. But you don’t have to know what I am like, right? ^_^

What I somehow don’t understand in these personality examinations are the promotions that come after. Why do we need to ‘improve’ ourselves? Should we become better INTJs or any other classification? Or are we being molded to become ‘better’ individuals by changing parts of us that society cannot accept? There is also the question of what ‘better’ actually means.

After all, I personally believe a part of our personality depends on how others perceive us… but it doesn’t mean we need to care about what they think about us. I don’t think it is fair that a person can put a label to anybody’s character without spending enough time with him or her. Even married people tend to misinterpret their partners’ actions, parents can’t understand their children’s philosophies, and colleagues can’t decipher each other’s logic. Who knows, the INTJ beside you might be very different from the one who has written this post… but who still wants to determine if she’s actually an INTJ.

Although Buzzfeed took a pretty good shot at it and almost convinced me.
https://www.buzzfeed.com/newu1671/80-signs-youre-an-intj-cz0z?utm_term=.coqYqX2AP#.ruqnKLQ8v

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* The question  to http://personalityhacker.com

Self-Studying Japanese

by Prex JDV Ybasco


Watching Japanese cartoons and dramas probably is the primary reason why I am taking up Japanese. Apart from that, their OSTs are amazing! They have a certain feel to them that even though I hardly understand them, I feel like I can do the impossible. However, there are always some moments when subtitles or English lyrics do not satisfy me. As they say, some things are lost in translation. I do not intend to live in Japan (but I certainly want to visit!) so I have decided not to take professional classes in Japanese and just learn the language by myself. After all, if language learning can be considered one’s hobby then how hard will that be?

I would not consider myself an expert in languages but here are some ‘strategies’ I have used to study Nihongo.

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Lang-8| 02 一番好きな映画 / My Favorite Movie

Original Post:

私の一番好きな英語の映画と小説はハーリポータです。高校生の時、ハーリポータ本を読んで始めました。英雄たちはすごくて楽しいです。ハーリが若すぎてとてもかっこいくて強いです。まほうはでかけるから。ハーリは二人友達がいます、ローンとHermione。ローンは笑うな人そしてHermioneは頭が良いです。ハーリは強くて怖いてきがいます。てきの名前はVoldemort です。でもハーリはたくさんなかまがいますから、大丈夫。

学生の時はホグワツに行きたかった。そして、まほうワンド使いたかった。まほうの世界に住んでいたらどこでも出来たと思った。電車の駅 9 ¾ も見たかった.まほうの世界を見られないことがわかるけどこのは私のバーカな夢です。

今もイギリス国に行きたいから、一週間に一回ハーリポ-タの映画を見ます。

どう思いますか。あなたの一番好きな映画は何ですか。


English Translation:

My favorite movie

My favorite English movie and novel is Harry Potter. (Please check the Katakana for Harry Potter.)

I first read Harry Potter when I was in high school. The main character is cool and interesting. Harry Potter is young but he is amazing and strong. He can do magic.Harry has two friends, Ron and Hermione (once again, please give me the Katakana for Hermione). Ron is a funny guy while Hermione is smart. Harry also has a strong and scary enemy. His name is Voldemort. However, it is just fine because Harry has a lot of friends.

I also want to go to Hogwarts when I was studying. In addition, I wanted to use a magic wand. I thought living in a magical world will let me go anywhere I wanted. I also wanted to see Platform 9 and 3/4. I know that it is impossible to see a magical world but it’s my stupid dream.

I still want to go to England so I watch Harry Potter movies once a week.

What do you think? What is your favorite movie?


Edited:

私の一番好きな英語の映画と小説はハリです。
高校生の時、ハリーの本を読始めました。主人公たちはすごくておもしろいです。ハリーはいですが、とてもかっこくて強いです。まほうをかけることができるから。ハリーに二人友達がいますハーマイオニーです。ロンは面白いです。そして、ハーマイオニーは頭が良いです。ハリーには強くて怖いてきがいます。の名前はヴォルデモート です。でもハはたくさんなかまがいるので、大丈夫。 

学生の時ホグワツに行きたかったです。そして、魔法の杖を使いたかったです魔法の世界に住んでいたらどこでも行けるといました。電車の駅 9 ¾ も見たかった。まほうの世界を見られないことがわかっているけど、これは私のバカな夢です。
今もイギリスに行きたいから、一週間に一回ハリッターの映画を見ています。
どう思いますか。あなたの一番好きな映画は何ですか。

Disclaimer: Harry Potter Quote JPG was from
http://www.theshabbycreekcottage.com/harry-potter-printables.html

Lang-8日本語Self Introduction

It is not a secret that I have been self-studying Japanese for about a year now. I am quite aware of my progress as I can read blog posts, answer reading articles and even exchange tweets with Japanese netizens. Considering that my main objective in studying is to be able to read manga – Japanese comics- in Nihonggo, nobody can say I haven’t achieved my goal yet. However, as I am about to take my Japanese examination in two weeks, I have to do my absolute best. After all, nobody wants to fail an exam.

One of my students has recommended this website, Lang-8.Com, a tool for language learners who want to hone their reading and writing skills and get feedback from native users. Have I mentioned it is also free?

lang 8

Learners can post a paragraph in their target language and its translation in their native language (in my case, I have put English rather Filipino). Here is a sample of my short introduction:

lang 8 1

Language learners get feedback from native speakers of the L’s target language:

lang 8 2

As in this case, I received recommendations on how I can improve my sentences along with explanations.

This is a good way to put to use the grammar structures I have been learning in textbooks and to help me memorize words that I don’t get the chance to use in conversations. I am planning to put my answers in my textbook’s writing activities in Lang-8 and hopefully I can improve really fast.

I also have to do my part and help language learners like myself improve by editing their sentences when I have the time. I cannot just receive and not give, right?


Visit : http://lang-8.com/

The Peculiars

The Peculiars

A Book Review of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

by Jahzeel Dionne V. Ybasco

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“There are peculiars all over the world,” Miss P, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

 

Having a different world where diversity is tolerated and encouraged is a famous theme in the fantasy genre that it does not come as a surprise Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children reminds me of Harry Potter, Pendragon, and X-Men . Special beings mingling with normal humans, wise old people taking care of the young ones and passing on the legacy, protagonists having to live up to their peculiarity, their gifts, the nature of their powers–this formula contributes to MPHPC being a page-turner.

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Some kind of ADDICTION

Some kind of ADDICTION

Jahzeel Dionne V. Ybasco

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They say that in order to forget about an old addiction, you have to find a new one.

 

I have to be honest. About a year ago, a mania took over me: marketing my book. I remember juggling the scanty breaks I had to memorize Hiragana, Katakana and Kanjis and promote To Be Continued. Trolling Goodreads, Amazon, and even Book Review sites, I sent hundreds of emails to a number of people to read and review my book. The hunger was real–I just had to find that one person who could say something good about my baby, and then another, and another. It all became too much until I could not recognize who I was anymore. Such was the life of an amateur self-published Author.

 

Then, one of my first acquaintances in publishing wrote a blog about how he turned out to be a Marketing Agent and not a writer. I was ashamed of myself when I figured out, I had been living the same kind of life for a number of weeks–not that there was something wrong about being an Agent because there is none; it was just a path I did not choose to take. I was so preoccupied with marketing my book, getting rejected, nursing my broken heart, getting positive feedback, feeling over the moon–in that cycle– I did not even have time to write a chapter for my next novel. “Nobody stops being a writer” and it was so embarrassing to stop caring about doing  what I loved just because I wanted to look for someone who would read the first product of my sleepless toils.

 

Depression hit me hard. Not as hard as some people in the world to drive me to insanity and cut people from my life. The better term I guess for this was frustration. Was I trying to get famous? Believed me when I say  I laughed a hollow one because I had not even thought about that. I enjoyed how words and stories weave inside my head, flow through my fingertips and stain my paper and I still do. Was it wrong to share that creativity to the world? No it was not. What my biggest mistake was I forgot that I had started writing for myself, without having any regard to what people might say about my works. I bore my first children in Fanfiction.Net and let them roam around freely, and whether readers found them interesting or boring I charged every review to my experience. Why was it more difficult to let go of my novel then? When my thoughts could not reach beyond this boundary, I told myself, it was about time to put my pen down and look for other things that could inspire writing again. I needed a distraction.

 

Another whirlwind of addiction came and it swept me away with it. I got in touch with Foreign music again, a reminder why I started blogging in the first place, Music. Getting busy because I enjoyed Japanese and Korean music helped boost my enthusiasm in learning 日本語. I could pick up words and even write faster in Japanese. At last, there was something I could do so easily!

 

The plus side of it all was I learned to enjoy making friends online which I honestly find difficult to do in real life. It was so much easier creating an alter ego whose persona nobody could judge. There were challenging moments because nobody could pierce through the shield called internet. It was difficult to love wholeheartedly and receiving love came with a tinge of insincerity. The people I chose and who chose me in return were different though. I could not help but trust them.

 

Then, I decided to give my online friends copies of my book. Little did I know that this could put more pressure on me. A piece of me could be judged–what is even worse was the idea that they would not read nor judge it all because it was mine and they would rather have a great relationship with whom they thought I was–another image that I built to protect myself. I laid myself bare, subject to scrutiny.

 

I was back to square one. Before I knew it, I started getting busier, trying to forget what these people might say about me or my book. The internet proved to be a good distraction once more because I was able to see book review jobs~~I could review novels and get copies of them for free. It was perfect. I barely had enough time to worry about the addictions that became too much to bear. However, I missed those who gave me a reason to be more accommodating in social networks. Yes, I could listen to the group we follow, I could buy the rest of the CDs, I could have followed the group without interacting with them but to my surprise I couldn’t. It was not as fun.

 

I can conclude my blog here, in a state of depression… or hopelessness, whatever I want to call it. However, comes with it is an anticipation of acceptance and that is what I am addicted to.

 

Seriously, I think I need a rehab.

Running for Happiness

Running for Happiness

by Jahzeel Dionne V. Ybasco

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4:02 AM

For the nth time you asked yourself why you had chosen to run.

It was a twenty-one kilometer marathon that started at 4 am. With that distance and God knows how much time you needed to cover it, you couldn’t help but think of seemingly mundane things. As you breathed in that sharp cold morning air, thoughts kept pouring in—or out with your sweat, mingled with the carbon dioxide you exhaled.

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Signed Sealed Delivered, Tax Included

Signed Sealed Delivered, Tax Included

by Jahzeel Dionne V Ybasco

Dear Actors in Business Suits and Polished Shoes,

I saw your advertisement. You have a new commercial again. And no, I did not say it is a political advertisement. How could I? Wasn’t it last year when I started seeing your face on television and posters, it was not even the election period then? You even claimed those ads had been paid for by your friends. Come on. How much did you pay for that? I wonder if the money you spent could have been used for a better purpose. I for one thought you could have started putting up the school you promised in the beginning of your term—but I guess you can’t remember that.

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