A lot of choice in life, but do you have the guts to take the risk?

The inevitable part in a human life is deciding where it will go, do you enjoy the status quo that you’re living right now? Or you do have a plan but don’t know where to start and probably don’t want to take the risk.

The purpose is to get a better quality and meaning of life for yourself, everyone have their own meaning in life. One of the popular one is to contribute for others.

Besides meaning of life, people want to achieve high to get their needs, and in the end to get what Abraham Maslow calls “Self-Actualization”.

Trials and Tribulations is what we call the obstacle we face to achieve the needs. It is complex, multi-layered, multi-faceted, multi-dimension. Obstacles from technical, practical, political, social, cultural to spiritual. We sometimes scared to get out of our comfort zone and go through the norms. Misfit is not an option for the majority.

This attitude of “stay safe” in the status quo is what rooted inside of some of the new generations. Staying safe by conforming to the society made their anxieties and depression develop and let’s hope it will not go further to self-harm.

It takes most of your asset to take a huge risk, but time will pay what you have sacrificed


The “Still” Rising of K-Pop Culture

The Korean Wave also known as Hallyu(한류) Wave is a popular term to describe the spread of Korean culture to the world (especially the neighbouring country). It happens when the government start to acknowledged and then funding the entertainment industry (drama, film, and music) more, predicted that the sector will increase the economic development for the country. I’m sure this is a common term especially for students studying cultural studies in their university, since this phenomenon is really unique and pretty much successful despite it has been started long ago since the 1990s and still going on.

I have to say that I’am one of those people that got affected by the infectious cultural product. I don’t know precisely when is my first encounter with K-pop, but I remember it when I was sitting at the end-year of elementary school (about the year 2004), my sister usually played songs by Kang Ta, Shinhwa, and BoA (some of popular the artists back then) after she got back home from college, she even have lots of their albums organised neatly at her desk and her drawer (I don’t know how she knew this kind of things, guess it might be the magazine). I quite like it the first time I heard it and some of them is catchy, though I’m not listening it as a hobby (To be honest, I’m not that particularly interested in music back then, my only concern in life as a kid is only playing outside and PlayStation).

That year 2004 is not the year I only encountered K-pop music, but also the drama. During the holiday semester, my sister played the Korean drama Full House at the living room every day in the morning. Just the three of us-me, my sister, and my mother-enthusiastically watched it while eating and slurping cup of hot noodles. The main stars are Rain and Song Hye-Kyo, I forgot what’s the drama all about but what I remember is the two main characters (who are not a couple) have no other choice but to live together in the same house because of an unfortunate event. As a kid, I’m not that concerned about the narrative, I only like the tension that always happen between the two characters which is the funny part of the series. I can say though that K-drama entertains.

2008 is the year I got fascinated in K-pop. And it’s also because of my sister with the help of the famous-infamous website: Youtube (I dare to say that this website is one of the main catalyst of this Korean Wave working more effective). She watched this many Korean Reality Shows that are really funny, from X-man, Star King, to Star Golden Bell. Those three reality shows are really creative and I was laughing really hard by their different style of humour and games. In addition to gain more viewers, for marketing strategy, and for the sake of excitement, all of the show usually feature popular artists, especially the one that have just debuted be it in music, television, or other entertainments.

From the reality shows that I watched, I got curious with the guest artists that were invited to the shows. That’s when I dig up more to K-pop music, starts to discover the other and listening it (all because of Youtube). And not long after that, a boy-group named Super Junior released its single called Sorry Sorry and a girl-group named Girls Generation (SNSD) released its single called Gee in 2009, it is also posted in Youtube. The song is quite catchy for a 2009 music, it’s packed with dance moves and that ‘thing’ that I can’t describe makes you want to go back and watch it again. For me, those two are the prior turning point of K-pop growing fast (not to mention Korean Reality Show Running Man (2010). The emphasis to the turning point would be Psy’s “Gangnam Style” and Big Bang’s “Fantastic Baby” at 2012 and the third would be BTS’ “Dope” at 2015).

Both K-pop music and drama is growing fast after the year. But the ones that got me interested is the music. K-pop music is not your average pop music like the western and it’s not that unorthodox like J-pop’s. The difference comes from the entertainment industry, where they invest not only in producing of the music, but they also invest big in the artists. When it comes to K-pop group, before their first debut, the artists (or trainee) have to be trained really hard by the management. I don’t know if this is true but from what I see they will get quarantined for some time to train their talents from singing to dancing. Not just the artists, but visual-aesthetic is included at their top-list priority as the art of entertainment. Hence, you can see why most of K-pop videos are a stellar pop performance ever, visually eye-candy and not to wonder why they sometimes regarded as fashion icons.

The other great things about K-pop is they change their style of music according to the current pop music and sometimes they incorporate it with their style of music into something new and listenable to every one. They mix their music with EDM (f(x)’s 4 “Walls”), fuse it with J-pop (GFRIEND’s “Rough”), American Hip-Hop (Agust D’s “Agust D”), and even debuted in America (CL’s “Lifted”).

At the end, Korea is still waving their culture to the world with their impressive entertainments, and the wave keeps getting better and better.


Is Information an Important Essence?

“This is the age of the internet” that’s what people call about when they talk about our era. When talking about the internet, few people would mention the huge wave of information it contained. It is the source of knowledge beside book, it is fast, it is omnipresent. People access it every day to see the news and other information they wanted to read. Lots of best things happen in the internet, most of what you want is right on the internet.

The internet have changed human behaviour fundamentally, especially in getting informations and filling their leisure time. Its constant exposure teases us with its aesthetically appeasing contents be it with video, text, or picture. Sure people buy that, and internet now is one of the most staple entity for an individual and for organizations to be modern and to stay connected with where the majority of civilization is going. Even since then, the internet is being regulated in every country in the world because of its threat of security, privacy, piracy, and many more.

But the odd thing is when people starts to use it excessively. People binge it. It is a consumer paradise. You can access everything and about anything and it will give you what you need, pretty much like a djinn or a fairy godmother (don’t take it literal about this though lol). This instant gratification you get from the internet tends you to get you lazy, especially to those procrastinator people out there like me.

Sure it is not bad for binging the internet. Information is good for you, to be a knowledgeable people. But I think being exist in the world is not much with only being to know something, but also what you can do with the information you get. Existing in the world isn’t much about being a consumer all the time. I think it is best to give what you get from the internet to other people. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is, you can start with the simplest things you can think, as long as it will change them to be a better person.

Bojack’s Still Being Bojack

As always and still, Bojack is that character that you want to punch gazillion times. His self-egotistic persona makes you wanna puke in his face, but on the other side at the same time you see the soft-side of Bojack, a horse who just don’t want to be lonely, his acts of craziness only comes when there’s a clash that is not in parallel with his principles. But it’s not as simple as “being lonely”, his character is really complex that you can see his way of thinking always changing every episode.

All the other characters have their problem that is as dark as Bojack’s, from Todd with Emily, Diane with Mr Peanutbutter and Princess Carolyn. Lots of topic is taken into the spotlight in this series: Sexuality, Abortion, Love, Career, Feminism. Despite it’s theatricality, every supporting character in Bojack Horseman looks honest and still portray human problems the way it should be. Bojack though, his life definitely struck an iceberg and just want to sunk the way like Titanic did. The star of Horsin’-Around who plays a starring role in Secretariat still fails to get the love he wanted…

Capt. Peanutbutter conversation with Diane


Badass Ove Grumbles About the World

A Man Called Ove

I’ve just read the first chapter and I can already tell that this is going to be a great book.

A Man Called Ove” is a novel written by Fredrik Backman tells a story about an old man who struggle to comprehend on how the modern world operates around him. He always perplexed on how strange people acting nowadays especially with their ever-growing technology. Realising their strangeness that leads to stupidness, Ove shoved his hand in his pockets and ready to ambush the modern folly. I finished reading the first chapter and it’s already packed with lots of smart sarcasm that brings you laugh and somehow you can relate to it. The perfect thing about this book is how Ove literally don’t give a damn just about everything that gets in his way.

Here is a quote (minor spoiler content) from the first chapter that actually quite sums up of who is this Ove:

Now it’s just computers and consultants and council bigwigs going strip clubs and selling apartment leases under the table. Tax havens and share portfolios. No one wants to work. A country full of people who just want to have lunch all day -Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove

and another:

And the poser has a girlfriend. Ten years younger. The Blond Weed, Ove calls her. Tottering around the streets like an inebriated pandas on heels as long as box wrenches, with clown paint all over her face and sunglasses so big that one can’t tell whether they’re a pair of glasses or some kind of helmet -Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove

Damn he knows what he’s talking about and there’s even more funny pouting. I don’t know why I’ve been wanting anyone, any entity dare to say shit about the world right now and that is just in the first chapter of this book, I don’t even care that I was one of the generation that Ove mocked. Yea, Ove is an old stern, austere, conventional, pragmatic, conservative-you-name-it man in the world. Yet every sarcasm he points out is a fact of irony in the modern world.

Growing up Watching “Courage the Cowardly Dog”

Back when I was a kid, tCouragehis anthropomorphic dog character that is called Courage, is one of my favourite character of all time. Some people might think choosing a coward and a timid dog as a favourite icon is quite an odd choice. Most kids usually love their cartoon character to have all sort off good “quality”in their persona. But most importantly, what I like about Courage is how he was created differently than most of the main characterin many cartoons, he is the antithesis of what a main character should be. The title indeed is already self-explanatory about the main character’s trait, Courage is a Coward dog, and it turns out that the depth of the “coward” the creator meant is like REALLY COWARD after you watched one of the episodes. And that is special.

The narrative of the cartoon is actually simple, every episode is an adventure of Courage saving his family from–supernatural–danger. It’s a horror-comedy cartoon with lots of morbid and strange elements to it which for me is a thrill and feasts my eye by the visual. What’s interesting is how Courage deal with every situation, his manifestation of anxiety and cowardice when facing danger are what makes the cartoon special and different. Courage is the main character, yet about 90 percent in each of the episode portrays Courage who always get scared by the enigma being he’s facing. Not just being scared, he sometimes get bullied by his owner–Eustace–and other characters, and he doesn’t give a sh*t about it, apparently “sticks and stones” don’t break him but supernatural do. Of course, in the end Courage will able to finish the problems, and it makes you happy when a character you can relate to always winning, overcome their anxiety, and save their family.

Courage may not be a hero, but he is one of my inspiration back when I was a kid. Behind those superficial character, he is a brave, kind-hearted and a determined dog who wants to do good.

A Look through Persona 5 Opening Theme Lyrics

About two weeks ago was huge a news for the gamers. Atlus Launched its Official (I think) Opening Theme for their biggest franchise Persona 5. Apparently it’s the same as the trailer that we’ve seen before except they inserted small appearance for the new characters and add lyrics for their theme song composed by Shoji Meguro and performed by Lyn. Here’s the link for you who haven’t watched it: ペルソナ5 オープニングアニメーション

Here I’m not gonna talk about the details about the concept nor the story of the game. But, I’m quite interested to look at the lyrics for the Opening theme since Persona are known for its deep-meaning-philosophic lyrics, notwithstanding that maybe the grammar is a bit off. So here I’m gonna break down the lyrics that I got from http://megamitensei.wikia.com/wiki/Persona_5_Opening_Theme, and maybe I’ll try to figure the meaning behind the lyrics based by my slight knowledge from every information that I got about their promotions:

Who am I? 
Am I not unique?
Maybe I’m not here at all 

(the 1st verse start with two questions phrase, a person contemplating and questioning him/her self-identity, confused, and doubting that he/she is present in life. The person feels alienated from the world because they can’t be themselves and always trying to conform with the society to be accepted)

Look, the fakers
Blinding us with lies
They’ll break us all of the soul

(the 2nd verse talks about the society itself. The society by what the video game means I think is a society that behave and act like what others wanted they to be, hence being a “fakers”, fakers also lie to themselves so we can’t see their true self. They started to think and scared that the fakers’ “normal-ness” will start contagiously affected them)

Oh, it’s useless!
(Do you know what to do, huh?)
What could it mean that we’re here?
(What does it all mean?)
Can we make a difference?
(Can we really make a difference?)
If we don’t break out of here?

(the 3rd verse explains about how the person hates the way world works, he/she understand and aware there’s something wrong with the world and want to make a change about it but didn’t know how to do it)

Wake up, get up, get out there!
Raise your voice high just like us
Feel the rhyme build up higher
Why does nobody want change?

(the 4th verse is the climax of the song, the person starts to realize he/she needs to stand up and make a change to the world when nobody else wants a change )

Just imagine you’re out there
Swatting lies in the making
Can’t move fast without breaking
If you hold on life won’t change

(the last verse is the justification to the person that the world needs a change because the lies that the society constantly make are hindering their dream in being themselves. And if they don’t make change, it makes their life and the world less-meaningful)

So that is a short warm thought of my opinion about the lyrics which is awesome. I’m not surprised but happy since the lyrics is so Persona-ish and it is quite as I expected to be, so I’m not that disappointed at all. You can even tell what will the theme of the story about just from the lyrics. So what about you? What do you think? If you have a different opinion, feel free to comment!