Sunday, April 17, 2011

Writing, Composing, and a Selfish Ambition

At this point in time, at this hour, at this minute (actually its been about 5 minutes but whatever), I finally finished my thesis paper. And yes, it does feel good to hold the 15 pages of semi-hardwork in my hands.

I just finished proofreading it and realized how much my writing style has changed. No matter what I write, I tend to have an informal tone, with everything. It can be something absolutely serious but I'd still condone  the actual serious part. Being a thesis paper one would assume it's all professionally written with many critics and reviews but its completely the opposite of that. My thesis paper sounds like a huge, elongated blog entry with a couple of "big words". Just FYI my thesis research was about music and emotion and how film scores (mostly Disney) evoke certain emotions. Are we trained at birth to react in certain ways when we hear specific musical cues? I'll save you 15 pages of trouble so the bottom line of my paper is, yes, music does have an impact on your emotions. Now it just feels weird that I dumbed down my whole research into one, non-scholarly sentence. If only the world was as simple as that. It always has to be yes or no...and why (that despicable word...)

Alongside my thesis research, all VPA majors have a "thesis project" they must finish in order to be degree-a-fied. Its personal choice whether you do two, semester long projects, or one, big year long project. You know me, I'd take the shorter version. So yes I chose to do two, semester long projects. This semester I am composing my own score for Fantasia 2000. Obviously not the whole film but two suites: The Pines of Rome and Firebird. Both are about 10 minutes in length and I realized what I got myself into in the beginning of the semester when I had musical block for quite a bit. Took me a while but inspiration came from the randomest (not a word but I don't care...I think I OD on this word) sources as usual. Long story short, I am 90% done with my scores and I am somewhat proud yet disappointed in my compositions. One, I'm proud of the fact that I can actually compose, what I think is 20 minutes of decently sounding music and two, I just don't like the digitalized sound that my piece embodies. I am not able to record a live symphonic orchestra to get the natural, epicness, nor do I have the means of purchasing (or pirating) software and equipment that I probably have to pay a arm and leg for. Something I'd probably struggle with forever.

Strangely enough, I actually had thoughts of pursuing creative writing (in a more sophisticated sense because no one would take my limited, 2 syllables max, vocabulary). Its something with the arts, all the arts, that entices me. Those who say writing and composing music is not an art form need to get themselves checked for a missing right hemisphere. Am I doomed to be a creative junkie for life? I don't mind. The only problem is that creativity can't pay for rent...yet.

Dear God, 
Grant me the wisdom to take away my selfish ambitions and refill it with the ambition for your kingdom.


Bible Progress - 2 Kings Ch. 6 (back on track!)

Monday, April 11, 2011


I get stressed over the most randomest (not a word but who cares) things. I'm not stressed because of my thesis projects or final thesis papers and presentations, but I'm stressed over the fact that I am graduating. Why am I getting stressed over graduating? I ask myself all the time these days. I secretly know the answer but I constantly deny it. "I'm stressed because I don't want my best 4 years of my life to end. Its all drawing to a close so rapidly!".

As the months wind down on the greatest 4 years of ones life (supposedly), taking a look back at mine gives me both room for regret and satisfaction. Of course campus has changed a lot physically since I've first stepped foot onto cuse as a open-minded, ready to take on the world freshman. All I wish for now is a pleasant ending to a soon to be memorable chapter of my life. Pleasant, but challenging as well. After many life changing experiences, critical life lessons learned, and pots and pots of KCS special moo gook (everyone should know this lunch special if they've been to the Grove), theres less than a month left in the greatest era of my life. Its sad on my part that I countdown the days til graduation not because thats when my life will take off, but because thats when my fantasy life will end and the "real world" will begin. I have a hard enough time working 15 hours a week, twice a week. Cuse has taught me that I'm definitely not fit for a office job. I need my freedom to travel and go crazy exploring my passions.

I've been doing a lot of soul searching lately to find what God wants me to do in the future (still unknown). I have dreams of doing everything possible that encompasses my interests in film, audio, art, food, games, church, you name it. We all know thats "humanly" impossible because no one person can juggle that much at the same time. Or maybe we are completely capable yet everyone is too scared to try it because they probably know its "bound to fail". Should I be the world's first mega-entrepreneur that starts a business that does literally everything creative? Thats stress for another day. Currently I'm stressed because I only have a month left in cuse. Granted I hate cuse with a near burning passion its strange that I'm feeling so down about leaving this place. Shouldn't I be happy I'm finally out of this hole?

I guess its a good type of stress because its not the type that makes you want to break down in the middle of the night because you pulled an all nighter and bombed the exam. Its the type of stress that keeps me on my toes, refreshing my gmail every 5 minutes (literally) waiting for the one email that has your future attached to it. Its the type of stress that you know will one day turn into nostalgic feelings whenever and wherever I eat moo gook again.


Bible Progress - 1 Kings 7 (I slacked a bit last week) -_-;;

Monday, April 4, 2011

Ctrl + Z and R

Recently I read something regarding the combination of real life with the computer. The question was what computer function would you use in real life? Many people answered Ctrl + Z (or Command + Z for us mac users). By now I assume everyone has used Ctrl + Z as much as they breathe. We live by the undo command. Undo saves us from that one fateful error we make or the accidental "delete" when we write our papers.

But imagine if Undo was actually a function in real life.

Imagine all the possibilities of a utopian society. Everything would be almost too perfect. If we make a mistake on a test and we realize after we get our scores back, we can hit undo. If we ask a guy/girl out and they reject you, we can hit undo to save us some awkwardness. The possibilities are limitless. The world would be way too perfect. However, perfect in one person's world does not make a perfect world. It was intriguing when I stumbled upon this fact because if one person's world is perfect, another one's won't. Reason being we're not all the same. We are not cookie cutter human beings that are mass produced with the same likes, dislikes, values, morals, and desires. This could turn into a whole discussion of what the world would be if it was 100% one sided. 

Wheres the fun in zero uniqueness?

For me I would definitely love the undo function in my life. I mean I've made some pretty stupid decisions and accidentally hit the wrong keys at the wrong point in my life. If I could undo all that and Ctrl + R (redo) I would have no regrets. But we can't take out the fact that its the regrets of stupid decisions we've made in the past that gives us the wisdom to not repeat history. We can't expect undo and redo to happen ever. Realistically we do not live in a perfect world. We just have to man up (woman up?) and face our regrets and learn from them. But the possibility of undo-ing that bombed exam or the fattening late night chocolate cake still tickle our inner perfectionists. We all want a perfect world but since that'll never happen, might as well take charge of our own world and make it perfect. No regrets, take the curve ball, get ready for the next pitch.


Bible Progress - 2 Samuel 21