ikyrian: HiNaBN's {...} (Default)
There's something that I've been pondering these past few weeks. With gas prices fluctuating, it's really understandable why there has been such a huge resurgence in finding alternate modes of transportation to everyday places like work. What used to be considered a mark of the poor is now considered fashionable. People find many different ways to ride to places like work all with different excuses as to why they're doing. People ride mass transit more, people carpool more, people walk more, people ride their bikes more. People do it to save money on gas, people do it because it's the "Green" thing to do(a word I despise entirely - it's a color people, not a way of life), people do it because of peer pressure, people do it because they can't afford not to, etc. etc.

None of these things are bad, per se, as there's no right or wrong reason for finding an alternative means to work. However, there does seem to be a group of people who are being complete douche bags about it.

Cyclists.

I get it, I really do - they want exercise, they want to not to have to pay for gas every few days, they want fresh air, they're poor, wtfever, they just want to ride their bikes dammit. Fine. No, seriously, that's fine. I'm glad you're riding your bike Mr. Bicycle Man and I'm glad you're getting some exercise Mrs. Bicycle Madame, but can you please do it on the fucking sidewalk?

I've taken to reading the newspaper in slow but steady preparation of taking the FSOT which means I've been also been reading Op-eds and Letters to the Editor columns. The Washington Post, in the past week or so, has run a few letter in regards to cyclists both those who ride and those who drive by.

The first one I read was from a person who was a cyclist. She started with the usual complaints about drivers not paying enough attention to cyclists and how dangerous it is for cyclists to be out on the road and just in general the the complaints of most cyclists. Then she goes on to conclude that she's surely in the right here, and superior because of it, because she's not the one with slowly atrophying muscles and spreading noxious fumes in the air by driving.

I missed the second one, but from what I gather from the response, it was someone complaining about cyclists and how they should ride on the sidewalk. The response boiled down to "it's impossible to drive safely on the sidewalks because of pedestrians (I do believe it was a downtown DC location in question) so cyclists had to use the road." The overall tone of that letter was that all driver's were douche bags for not giving the road to the cyclists and how dare they whiz by us going the speed limit? There was also mention of how they "only take up a small amount of space" on the side of the road where driver's shouldn't be in the first place."

The final letter I saw was from an anesthesiologist, in response to both of the cyclists, reminding them that tangling with a vehicle would almost certainly lead to severe injury if not death. He pondered in his letter if the cyclists had a "death wish."

As you can imagine, the letter I most agreed with was the anesthesiologists'. I can't I don't mind sharing the road with cyclists, because I do. But only because I'm afraid that something will go tragically wrong when I pass them. What if they take a spill in front of my car? And I can't stop? What if they have to swerve suddenly to avoid something in the road and they swerve into my car? What if they ignore the red light/stop sign and I don't realize that they're going to and hit them? What if I get into an accident with another vehicle and the cyclist becomes another victim?

According to USDOT National Highway Traffic Safety Administration there were 784 pedal cyclists deaths in 2005. That's 57 more than last year. 155 more than the year before. Now, most accidents happen in urban areas as apposed to the suburban areas and highways that I drive. Still, an accident can happen anytime, anywhere.

I drive by many cyclists on my way to work. I try to give them as large a berth as possible so as if something does go wrong, I wouldn't be at fault. It sounds callous but chances are someone would die and that someone wouldn't be me. The thought of seriously hurting or, God forbid, killing someone by accident like that terrifies me.

When I see cyclists clearly ignoring a little used paved pathway far away from the road in favor of being on the shoulder, it pisses me off. I start to wonder if they have a death wish. There's so much that could go wrong, why would they put themselves at risk like that? Especially since the posted speed limit is 50mph - there's no way a cyclist would survive without severe injury at those rates of speed, if the cyclist survived at all.

So, please, if you ride a bicycle, do everyone a favor and use the goddamn bike paths. Yes, they don't follow the roads exactly, but you're there for the exercise, right? Right?
ikyrian: HiNaBN's {...} (Bitch please)
So, I occasionally go through [livejournal.com profile] fandomsecrets "secrets" and the ones that really, really make me want to put my head through my desk are the: "If I hear you say "I don't like "blankseries" (usually One Piece) because of the artwork," I immediately think less of/lose respect for you." Usually their reasoning is because the story is so awesome that it super cedes how awful the art really is.

The only conclusion I can come up with that is that they don't understand what manga/graphic novels are in relation to say regular books with little to no pictures. When you buy a regular book, you're buying it for the story. Since there is no art is involved, except for maybe the cover, your own imagination must be engaged to visualize the story. Based on the descriptions in the books, the reader must come up with their own idea of what the characters and settings of the book look like. In essence, the plot of the book and how well it is written, will convince the reader to like it or not.

Manga/graphic novels, being a visual medium, rely not only on their plot and characterization, but also on well the story is rendered visually, to convince a reader to dis/like it. There is very little imagination involved in creating the characters/setting, all of that work has already been completed before you even pick up the book. The character designs have been worked out and setting has been drawn. Usually the only imagination involved at that point would be how the reader would think they sound and/or thinking outside of the plot as it has been written.

If a manga has art that is so abhorrent to your eyes that you get thrown out of the story, or in some cases can't even get into it, than that work is not worth the effort for you to read it. It doesn't matter how "good" another person thinks the story is in relation to the art, or how good the art is in relation to the story - it's not worth wasting your time and money on that series. These kinds of things are supposed to fun and enjoyable. Why would you waste your money on something that makes you continually roll your eyes and sigh every time you try to read through it?

I'll give a couple of examples. I, personally, cannot stand the art of "One Piece." I also cannot get engaged enough in the plot or the characters to make a credible go at reading the series because I am continually thrown out of the story because I'm thinking about how much I dislike the art and how much it bothers me. Yes, some people love the art. Some people hate the art but it doesn't bother them enough to not read the story. Fine, whatever. I have the same adverse reaction to Utena - I've been told over and over, it's so awesome, the story is just the greatest! So I give it a try and, wow, yeah, the art really bothers me. I just can't sit through it.

Another example is in the reverse, the art for "Yami no Matsuei," is, to me, simply stunning. I love how each panel is rendered, I love how the characters are drawn, and I love, simply love, the way the art is colord. But I cannot read YnM. I cannot read it because I hate most of the characters and the plot is not interesting enough to keep me going. Most of them annoy the living shit out of me (one in particular *coughhisokacough*). I read the first book and I want to punch the living day lights out of a good deal of them. (It's the same reason I gave up on Harry Potter.) Because of that, to this day I have never finished YnM. (Or Harry Potter.)

I also have a friend who refused to watch "Hikaru no Go" because of plot. She didn't understand how a series about Go, of all things, could be interesting. And I whined at her that it was really really good and she should just give it a chance! But, no. I forget what we ended up watching, but it definitely was not HnG. And I've done that a few times myself where the plot out there and unbelievable and overall uninteresting to me, that I wouldn't bother with that series. Like..."School Days" or "Azumanga Daioh."

It sees to be slightly more acceptable to dislike a manga/graphic novel for its plot/characterization instead of it's art. I guess the mentality is if you don't like the art, then you are just too shallow to understand the "complexity" of that series. If you ever feel that way, or are made to feel that way, please stop. You're not shallow for not liking it, that work is just not to your taste and anyone that tries to tell you different should STFU and GTFO.

Remember, manga/graphic novels/comic books of any flavor are all visual mediums. The art is an important element in the telling of that story and if you hate the art, fine. If you hate the plot, fine. If you hate the characterizations, fine. Try something else.

So, people who look down on others for not liking a series for the art instead of the plot and/or characterization, please grow up and remember that this is why there is something called "diversity." Thank you.
ikyrian: HiNaBN's {...} (Default)
I can't believe I feel compelled to rant on this again. I can't believe I feel so compelled to write anything about this again. But, not only am I feeling rather insulted, but completely misunderstood. (Which not only begs the question, why am I trying to justify myself to you all, but why are you trying to justify yourself to me?) But dammit all to hell, I'm rather fed up.

Now listen very carefully as I'll only say this one more time:

What I originally put in my LJ was my initial. Immediate. Reaction. Ok? There was no deep hidden meaning to my entry, I was just reacting. If you're looking beyond that and seeing "disapproval," well I'm sorry to disappoint, I don't. In fact, the more I think about it, the less I care. The more I read about what you have to say the more you're leading me to not care.

Besides, what is the problem with everyone? Am I not allowed to my opinion? Am I not allowed to think that certain types of interspecies sex is disgusting? And when I do have these opinions, who do you all think you are to call me "willfully ignorant" or lacking in playfulness?

None of you have any idea as to my life or childhood. Don't go around tossing out names against people you don't even know.

And if you can honestly say that when you first came upon something so strange and you weren't squicked, then kudos to you.

Besides, am I not allowed to give a "review" which wasn't even really a review to be honest and have it be bad? Do you do this to everyone that says something negative about your work? I sincerely hope not, for their sakes. Sheesh. Learn to let certain things go, for crying out loud. Not everyone is going to like what you write, they're not going to care, they're not even going to want to educate themselves further. You're lucky I did want to see what the story was all about. But I'm beginning to wish I hadn't so then I could just delete everything and *not care*. Then I really would be willfully ignorant, but dammit, at least I would be happy. There are worse things in life then not reading a porn story. Worse things that I could ignore. Being squicked by inter-species sex is something that'll always happen to me, so I guess that just makes me human. We all have our vices, and I'm fine with that one being one of mine.

As to the questions about my age, why do you care? If you'd actually read my journal even a little, you'd realize that I'm in college. You'd also realize that I'm not in my first year and that I can be immature. So's my uncle and he's pushing fifty. Nor am I raging homicidal maniac planning to destroy the world. That's something I said to have people realize you don't know just who you could be pissing off. At this very moment I could be pissing off a raging homicidal maniac, and I wouldn't know. Boy, will I feel stupid if I ever get cornered one day with some strange person saying to me, "You didn't. Like. My. Story! DIIIIIEEEE!!!!" But, hey, that's life.

Now, I'm not going to waste anymore of my time on this subject. Case closed. I don't want to see anymore on it. See, this is called letting go. Learn it. Live it. Love it.

I have a paper to write, dammit.
ikyrian: HiNaBN's {...} (Default)
I feel like I haven't talked to anyone beyond my roommate in *days*. Days! *distress distress distress* This is what catering does to you. It takes you in and doesn't let go until you're sucked dry, your feet hurting, a cloud bogging down your mind, and all you want to do is either scream or sleep. Or both. And you know that if you do talk to someone that you know and like you'll end up just biting their heads off because you're so tired and frustrated and *angry*. It doesn't help that you're a closet control freak, especially considering that your mother has drilled into your head for many years that you always need to be your best at work.

Angry that you have stay for all hours of the evening. Angry at the rough treatment from the people you're catering for. Angry at the stupidity of your fellow "co-workers" even though you know you'll prolly make the same mistake later. But you finally get to the point where it doesn't matter; anything anyone does is just going to piss you off, no matter what. And you think that *that* is what makes you angry most of all.

As you try to hold in the shriek of frustration that has been building for hours, you finally manage to break away from catering, only slightly scarred this time. Shirt lose, knees bent to alleviate the strain on your throbbing feet, hair falling around your head messily, you climb the stairs back to your dorm and try to summon up the will to take a shower to erase the smell of kitchen off of you. Ultimately you decide that it isn't worth it and just flop into bed and before you go to sleep you have one single thought.

Catering. Sucks. Ass.

That being said, I just have one more thing to say: Brandy you suck. I hate you. Grah. Getting me into Shakira, what were you thinking? I *hate* pop! I mean, just because the songs are actually pretty good, with rather interesting lyrics, good beats, and a damn sexy voice, doesn't mean I have to like it. *pouts* Now see what you've made me do? Go all popular and crap that I thought I left behind a long time ago. I was from the table that didn't give a shit, dammit! ...and that means nothing to anyone, does it? Well, it'll be an amusing story for later, anyway.




And just to let you know, I really don't hate you Brandy. In fact, I luuu~uuurve you for letting me borrow your Shakira CD. *glomps*

Peace!
#^__________^#
ikyrian: HiNaBN's {...} (apathy)
[livejournal.com profile] ghanimachan asked a rather difficult question in her reply to my last post, said question being "Do you consider us trustworthy?" I've been thinking it over all day and now I've finally formed an answer of sorts.

The first thing I'm going to tackle is the word "us." Her definition of "us" and my definition of "us" is almost undoubtably two completely different things. Mostly, I have absolutely no idea what she means when she says "us." So [livejournal.com profile] ghanimachan, I'm sadly going to ignore the word "us" and replace it with "me" and use you as an example on how I determine people to be trustworthy (for the most part, there are a few rare exceptions that this just doesn't happen for whatever reason).

First let me say, yes, I do consider you to be trustworthy, at least now I do. When I first meet you I had my doubts about that. What made me decide you were ultimately trustworthy was because [livejournal.com profile] noellesan thought you were trustworthy. Odd, isn't it? I was better friends with her, and when she was OK with you, I decided that I could be too. Does that make any sense? I tend to base my opinions of people on the opinions of my friends. Makes me sound rather co-dependent, doesn't it? Oh well, it's just the way that I've learned to be more sure of people when I get to know them.

Now, I don't do this all the time, because if I did life would be too simple, I guess. Sometimes it works out for the better and sometimes it doesn't. A good example of it working for the better is when I became friends with [livejournal.com profile] karweenie. When I first met her (holy cow, was it really a year ago?!? Gaaah!), I immediately thought, now there's someone I can be friends with. (This instinct doesn't work all the time either, but instead of besmirching someone's name, I'm not going to mention it.)

I hope you do write an entry on your childhood! I would love to know! Whee! And yes, I do know you love me, and I you. ^___^ Brandy ga sukiiiii!

[livejournal.com profile] noellesan Yeah, it *is* sad, but at least we have more common ground! ^_^

And last but not least, Denise: Yes, I totally agree with you. And I'm grateful for all of the friends that I've made here, because we all do come from different backgrounds and yet we have some point in common that makes it possible to be friends.

Ugh. My brain is fried. I've been thinking about this too much today. I think I'll stop now.
ikyrian: HiNaBN's {...} (Default)
Since I've been here (here being R-MWC), I've been asked by my various friends to update my livejournal. Well, I wondered what I should say that would be profound and something that they haven't heard yet. I mean, do they really need to relearn about my course changes and scheduling issues and loan problems? No, not really. Most of the people that care I talk to everyday. And it occured to me while I was laying in bed with a vicious headache that most of them don't really know my philosophy on life and what I think about people in generally.

What I think about people, in general, is actually not very nice, pretty, or sugar coated. Now, I'm not thinking of a specific person or persons when I say this, but my idea of people and humanity on the whole. I first formed this idea when I lived in Fort Belvoir, a military base in Northern Viriginia. We had just moved there from Pennsylvania where we were staying with my mother's parents for a few months after we left New York. Fort Belvoir was not a good place to live. My fther was the highest ranking officer in the neighborhood, so my brothers and I were picked on a lot. Teased, ignored, slandered, and just all around fucked over by our peers.

If any of you who know me now knew me then, you probably wouldn't recognize me at all. I used to be a very different person, very outgoing, gregarious, and happy. A little reserved perhaps, but that just happens when you move around all the time. I was a lover of the outdoors, of sports, and of people. I used to have actual ideals about humanity in general. Hah. I'm none of those things anymore. Any of them. They were beaten out of me when I lived in Fort Belvoir, literally, emotionally, and almost physically. And at this hellhole is when I formed all of my opions about people in general.

1. People are not to be trusted in any way, shape or form. There will always be someone to fuck you over in the end. And that someone will most likely be your closest "friend" and/or confidant. This was the hardest lesson for me to learn, for I used to be a very trusting soul. I was always taught that people were trustworthy and all that rot. No. They're not, most of them don't even come close. Whether it is telling the truth or lieing or being scheming sons of bitches, they're not trustworthy. You can't put an ounce of trust in anything they say, do, or say they do becuase you'll never know. You never know when you run into that one person who made some kid's life hell back in the grade school years. About the only people you could trust were priests and nuns (or various other religious types). But suddenly, they couldn't be trusted anymore. Suddenly there's priests touching little boys in the "briefs" area. No, people are not to be trusted.

2. In the end, all people want to do is use you for something. This should have been an easy lesson to learn, but oddly enough, it wasn't. Or more acurrately, it was learned, but never heeded, really. And it is something I still struggle with today. I tend to give way more of myself than is strictly necessary to my friends. It's my way of showing my trust to those people I deign to know something about them. I also tend to give and give and give and never receive anything in return. Any fucking thing. And I know some people are reading this thinking, "It's a friendship, it'll come back to you in the end." Yeah, fucking, right. This happened far more in high school than it does now, but I still do it now. Last semester (hell, last year) was a stunning example of this. God.

3. People tend towards the cruel. Whether it's by "accident" or not, they have the tendency to turn into this horrible monsters that no one really likes. I'm not excluding myself out of this rule either. Children are quite possibly some of the cruelest creatures on the face of this planet, and what's so cruel about it is it's either completely thoughtless or meticulously planned to hurt or kill. It stands to reason that I harbor an intense disliking for anyone over the age of a year and under the age of 18. But cruelty still runs rampant in everyone, whether they realize it or not. Thoughtless cruelty is one of the worst offences a person can make in my book. Snapping at people without thinking about what you're saying...those are the ones can cut the deepest.

4. Well there was a fourth point but I can't think of it at the moment.

Ok, so you've learned what I learned about people in general. Now imagine that you learned this when you were about six or seven. Before fourth grade. Hell, I wasn't even thinking about puberty at this point. I've learned that angst about the world and people and "why the hell don't they like me?" tends to be a teenage thing. I went through all of that before I was ten. Now, admittedly, my view of the world and people has changed over time, but not by much. I'm no more trusting of strangers now than I was before. I'm still a very hard person to get to know (much less like...), in fact as I get older, the harder it gets.

Gah, now this really does sound like teenage angst. Oh well.I never said that my mind was pretty.

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