Alex V's Journal|
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|Wednesday, June 22nd, 2005|
*sigh* Current Mood: apathetic
|Wednesday, June 15th, 2005|
|Friday, May 13th, 2005|
|Wednesday, May 4th, 2005|
|Sedated, inebriated soul charged with emotions...
I float in space... watch you walkin' through the Golden Gate
The phase that I pass is like a glitch, how can I miss that?
The risk factor is astronomical...
Sound effects spark imaginations, every syllable
Is crisp and clear, once upon a time I felt like God was light years away
But he said, "FEAR NO MAN", then my eyes opened
Forget the lies of deceiving mouths and rise from the dark to see the light
Beautiful in the eyes of the beholder
I wrote a thousand letters, signed and delivered, but I can't find the
Right words to describe this vibe...
Looking at my Francks' it's about that time
Hey yo, think about it for a sec, it ain't hard to see
Live from the city that don't know how to sleep
Tell me how-you-feel...
Ooh... I'm all shook up!
But the words alone don't seem to do the song justice... so here's the music to go along with it. :)m-flo - life is beautiful (DJ Deckstream remix)
I know you're going to read on. Don't read on. Download the song first. You won't regret it. (Unless you're Elisa, who can skip to the important part at the end)
The song kind of echoes how I'm feeling right now. Somewhat energized (even though it's about 3 in the morning), a bit lonely (what's new?), but still kind of optimistic about everything. Who knows. Life goes on (and on and on and on). I'll never really figure it all out.
I'm back from Boston... and wow... what an awesome city. My brother's car lease ran out so I flew to Boston to visit him for a few days (and see the city) and then drive back to Toronto. I really wish I had more time to spend there... hearing this incredible reggae/blues (with a healthy dose of funk) group called Toussaint and the China Band
at this really random street festival in Harvard Square made the whole trip worth it, I think. I've never actually seen a whole street of people dancing before (including this one really old
guy - imagine a bald, wrinkled, 70-year-old - dancing to the funky beats with more energy than anyone i've ever seen before)... that, and the "chowda van" ladeling out big bowls of free New England clam chowder in the middle of the square. Mmm. Chowder. :D What else about Boston? I got to meet my brother's girlfriend, checked out the city (food in Quincy Market... mmm...), went to Harvard, MIT, etc, chilled with my bro for the rest of the weekend, and then did a horrifying 9-hour drive all the way through Massachusetts, New York State and to Ontario. Whew. 4 days of intensity. I need to go back and see that band again. Hell, I need to go back to Boston again. Maybe live there someday. Boston's awesome!!!
The trip also spurned my new overly ambitious and impossible-to-achieve dream of the year
! Woohoo! On the bright side, at least it gives me extra motivation to study.
Oh, and I didn't even get to the best part of the trip... Elisa, you're probably the only one who'd make any sense (or lack thereof) of this, so here goes:
I went to a restaurant in Boston for lunch on one of the days when I was there. I ate a soup. It was really tasty, so I asked the waitress what was in it. And as I awaited her answer and sampled the mysterious concoction, I felt as if... I had seen the light.
I ate beets in Boston.
(As if it matters.) :D
|Wednesday, April 20th, 2005|
I apologize in advance if this offends anyone, but I think this says it all:The Evil Emperor
Exams are over and I'm back. Muaahaha! Current Mood: cheerful
|Wednesday, April 13th, 2005|
Just got back from the double credit electrical circuits exam.
I totally, completely, utterly owned
that exam. It's an awesome feeling when you finish a 3-hour exam in an hour and a half. Thanks for the brain energy, I guess it worked?!
Damn, I feel good.
|Tuesday, April 12th, 2005|
Two more exams to go, then no more school for 16 months!
Physics, management science and calculus all done... just electrical circuits on Wednesday, discrete math on Friday, and it's going to be all over. 4 more days.
And it's 3:53 in the morning. Time for sleep.
|Wednesday, March 16th, 2005|
I finally bit the bullet and ordered a "Loop Junktion" CD from CDJapan... now I can't wait until it gets here :) Loop Junktion's this awesome group I heard while browsing through some MP3s.. imagine a mix of acid jazz, drum n' bass, hiphop and electronica. Very cool indeed. It makes me look forward to the Tokyo club scene already.
Only another few weeks until exams, then a few weeks off, and then I'm off to become a salaryman for a year.
Here's to progress.
|Monday, February 28th, 2005|
I never really paid any attention to the stone walls of my room, but for some reason, I'm doing that right now. The bricks are perfectly square and the paint is an odd shade of off-white, seemingly ten layers thick, plastered over the wall as if the entire room was dipped in it, one-shot.
Very odd indeed.
There's a strange blend of Japanese R&B playing from my speakers, reminiscent of some obscure Shibuya nightclub at closing time, an energized crowd waiting to hear yet one last song. Dochin and Kaname smoothly harmonizing over pulsating pianos; a lady's voice, bright and clear, emerging to fill the void left behind by the departing saxophones; a driving drum beat; the moment captured by the optimistic energy, only to swiftly disappear by the musicians packing up their instruments and the nightclub closing on the start of yet another day.
It's now 2:01, and I'm still here, wide awake when I should be asleep, class starting in less than 7 hours. So many things on my mind.
I'm thinking about Nikhil's friend from high school, who committed suicide, a person I never knew. I never quite understood how someone could end their life voluntarily. Even though I never met him, or even seen his face or even knew his name, I can't help but feel a slight feeling of something that might be interpreted as remorse. Who was he? What did he do, what were his interests, his dreams? He could have become anything he wanted - but he chose the last refuge to silence everything once and for all.
One of my closest friends, who I've also never had the chance to meet, was also once thinking about suicide, many years ago. Thankfully she never did so, because if she did, I would have lost one of the people I trust more than anyone else in the world. She introduced me to Japanese culture later that year, me having never even given it a second thought - something that completely changed my life.
Without her, I never would have met Erin, after Graeme told me "there was some other girl who lives down the hall who's into Japanese stuff too." In turn, I never would have met Elisa, Alex the 3rd, Rebecca, Ben, Marie, or so many others. I never would have started a business trading with Japan, or applied to work for Epson. I never would have discovered the fun of singing Verdi's Requiem on the TTC subway (the instrumental parts, mind you), or driving a Skyline GT-R through the hills around Hamamatsu. I'd never have discovered Chage & Aska; never had the pleasure of randomly walking into Erin's room at the oddest times of the day...
It's like the infamous butterfly effect of chaos theory - "a butterfly flaps its wings in Brazil and a tornado occurs in Texas."
It's funny how our lives can be so easily changed.
Very odd indeed.
And now it's time for sleep.
But not after I hear the rest of this song. Current Mood: indescribable
|Sunday, February 27th, 2005|
Ugh, time to head back to Waterloo. Back to the gauntlet yet again.
For those who don't know, "the gauntlet" is my Monday-Wednesday-Friday class schedule, which involves 5 lectures and a two-hour tutorial, starting at 8:30 in the morning with one tiny break in the middle for lunch. It's hell.
And apparently I'm a Democrat. Time to get those "Clinton-Gore '96" bumper stickers out of the attic...
|Friday, February 18th, 2005|
"EPSON products are cultivated to fruition from a seedbed of fertile experience with a nutritious blend of software development excellence."
-"EPSON Edge" Development Laboratory web site
Mmmm... nutritious blend. Current Mood: amused
...and Alex has entered the building.
Wow. It's been quite the few ages since I've updated this journal, and here I am, flesh and blood (at least virtually, anyway), sitting in front of my computer, at the University of Waterloo, listening to "Ambitious Japan!" by Tokio at maximum volume, exhausted from midterms, excited about the Skyline GT-R that's at the Vancouver docks coming to Toronto, and generally happy about everything else that's been going on lately.
So where on earth do I start? This whole rollercoaster of craziness started after I got a job interview from Epson to work in Japan for a year to design hardware for printers, scanners, and all kinds of other cool stuff. It all went something like this:
9:00 AM: Group interview. I had to drag myself out of bed at 7 in the morning, shower, put on my Japanese salaryman suit (yep, I actually own a real, honest-to-god Japanese businessman's suit, bought in Osaka), and then trudged over to the Tatham Centre (the place where all the co-op interviews take place). The company who was holding an interview in the room before us (I don't remember which company it was) was blaring rock music out of the conference room. When they eventually finished, all the people who were in there walked out in sort of a daze. Finally, the Epson people showed up - two guys, one a Canadian who did most of the talking, and a rather relaxed-looking Japanese guy wearing a sweater. The group interview went well; they showed us all the places around Japan we could be working at, what the pay was like, etc, etc. It turns out they pay for the apartment and transportation in addition to a salary, which is a big bonus. Oddly enough, Andrew, one of my friends from Whitby who I haven't seen in years, turned out to be one of the guys I'm competing with for the job. However, there's three people out of eight candidates who get to go to Japan, so I think my odds are pretty good considering how well the individual interview went.
3:00 AM: Individual interview. At this point I was really, really fucking nervous. The guys introduced themselves, and I was bracing myself for those terrible HR type questions like: "Describe your strengths and weaknesses" and the oh-so-specific: "Describe an instance where you have been challenged." or "Explain two separate yet related instances where you had to think critically."
Thankfully none of those happened.
We just had a nice, casual conversation about the work I've been doing, I got the Japanese guy to laugh after I gave him my description of unagi in Hamamatsu, and we talked about various software designs I was working on and so forth.
And then came the moment of truth.
"Do you have any questions?"
Suddenly, something came to me that was on my mind the past week or so, so I decided to ask. "Yes, I have a technical question. Do you use a specific operating system like i-TRON in your printers?" For those who don't know, i-TRON is a very Japan-specific operating system that's really obscure unless you really know a lot about embedded systems programming.
This caught them completely off-guard. The Japanese guy looked at the Canadian guy, and then looked back at me with his eyes wide. "You know how to program for i-TRON?"
And then the shining answer:
"No, but I'd like to learn."
And not 10 minutes before I wrote this journal entry, I got the offer to become the newest employee of the Seiko Epson Corporation in Japan. :D
So what else has been going on aside from that? I'm really looking forward to next week.. we get four days off school, so I'll get the chance to go home, which I really, really need. I miss Toronto really bad. Ben was tossing around some plans to go to a jazz club, which I'm really looking forward to, so I'm hoping we can get something happening there. It's just good to be back in the swing of things.
Ahh. Nothing like living on three hours of sleep. Bah, sleep.. who needs it? :D Current Mood: shocked
|Saturday, September 4th, 2004|
|We agree much more than you think.
This is the day we celebrate Bohr
Who gave us the complementarity law
That gives correspondence (as Bohr said before)
That holds in the shell, as well as the core
That possesses the compound levels galore
That make up the spectrum
That's due to the modes
That belong to the drop
That looks like the nucleus
That sits in the atom
That Bohr built.
|Monday, August 16th, 2004|
I've simply had enough. Current Mood: pissed off
|Sunday, August 15th, 2004|
| You may go if you wish, but remember this: walk away now and you walk away from your crafts, your skills, your vocations, leaving the next generation with nothing but recycled digitally sampled techno-grooves, quasi-synth rhythms, pseudo songs of violence laden gangsta' rap, acid pop and simpering, ciphering, soulless slush. Depart now and you forever separate yourselves from the vital American legacies of Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Willie Dickson, Jimmy Reede, Memphis Slim, Blind Boy Fuller, Louie Jordan, Little Walter, Big Walter, Sunny Boy Williamson I and II, Otis Redding, Jackie Wilson, Elvis Presley, Leiber and Stoller, and Robert K. Weiss....Turn your backs now and you snuff out the fragile candles of Blues, R&B and Soul. And when those flames flicker and expire, the light of the world is extinguished because the music which has moved mankind for seven decades leading to the millennium will wither and die on the vine of abandonment and neglect.
-Elwood Blues Current Mood: cheerful
|Wednesday, August 11th, 2004|
|It's such a nice day for war.
As sung by composer, lounge singer, and jack of all trades extraordinaire
, George Alistair "The Fat Man" Sanger:"It's such a nice day for war,
So marvelous, who could ask for more?
Looting and killing by the score;
Such a nice day... for war.
The birds are singin' as the bombs are droppin';
The flowers bloom as the guns go poppin',
The bees are busy buzzin' to the sound of destruction
But that old ant... can't... get outta the way.
It's such a nice day for war,
So wonderful, who could ask for more..."Click for the MP3. Click for the greatest song ever, "Mr. Death". Current Mood: uncomfortable
|Monday, August 9th, 2004|
|"ramen to the right of them, ramen to the left of them..."
Which Office Moron Are You?Rum and Monkey: jamming your photocopier one tray at a time.
I'm apparently the paranoid boss. Muaahaha. Hey. What are YOU looking at?*shifty eyes*
So what's my evil, nefarious plan?
To make you all hungry.
Random Japan Picture of the Day:
This is ramen, with some gyoza served alongside. In a restaurant called "Yo-Teko", which bills itself as "The Kind-hearted ramen house". Mmm. Ramen. If there's anything in Japan I miss, it's this. Once you eat the real thing, you'll look upon instant ramen packets with scorn and disgust.
Interestingly enough, they gave me a "frequent ramen card" which promises a "super UP!" after 5 bowls of ramen. I'm tempted to fly back to Japan just to go back to this restaurant and eat 4 more bowls of ramen so I can find out what a "super UP!" actually is.
|Sunday, August 8th, 2004|
Ana. Your cookies are really, really good.
|Computers hate me.
I was attempting, for maybe a week, to figure out what was wrong with my chip programming board that I made.
What was wrong with it? Nothing. It was my parallel port in my computer that was fucked up.
I nearly screamed in agony when I figured that out. 7 days of checking connections on a printed circuit board and tearing my hair out even though it appeared that everything was perfectly fine.
At least I figured it out. Holy crap.
Random Japan Picture of the Day:
Japan has their own version of Canadian Tire, called "Autobacs", which carries car parts, performance stuff, tires and all kinds of other nifty car-related things. Well, as luck would have it, it turns out they even manufacture their own car (!) [god forbid if Canadian Tire made their own car] called the "Autobacs Garaiya". This is a picture of me at Super Autobacs Tokyo Bay Shinonome (the largest Autobacs in Japan, I believe) with the Garaiya. Hmm. Need to talk to the Autobacs people about getting these into Canada. Current Mood: aggravated
|Friday, August 6th, 2004|
The results of my university application experience:
Waterloo: Accepted into my program of choice
McMaster: Accepted into my program of choice
U of T: Accepted into alternate program
Ryerson: Put on a waiting list
Western: Put on a waiting list
Windsor: Rejected (!)
I feel like I deserve a drink or something. I got rejected from Windsor! Hee.
Japan Picture Of The Day:
I took this picture at Shin-Osaka station... this is the Nozomi shinkansen bound for Fukuoka. I still can't get enough of the JR's "Ambitious Japan!" advertising campaign. So coooool. Damn, I'm such a geek. Current Mood: surprised