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Saturday, December 31, 2016

Happy New Year!!!

Yo!

Hisashiburi dane.

What a weird year it has been, no?
Celebrities dying right and left, governments turing conservative, not to speak of elections and weird social movements.
I seem to have kept my promise of not writing as many blog posts this year, nor force myself to do things that I don't really feel like doing, and especially, not to give into the feeling that I have to achieve a certain number of things/uploads, etc. this year. Or well, at least I toned it down a bit. Now that I'm actually facing the end of the year I find that, depsite my fever (one always tends to get sick right in time for the Holidays, huh?), I've worked quite feverishly to finish up a few things right in time, including writing this very blog post. Luckily, it would seem that my bad puns are still around to stay.

So yeah, perhaps nothing much has really changed after all. I've been tremendously more busy with studies than I remember ever being in my life, I suppose. That's another reason as to why I've been less active online. I've also had the honor of meeting many wonderful people from different parts of the world, and conversing with them through the power of Skype. A couple of them are actually visiting me in Finland at this very moment!

I've been thinking though, is it really good to allow oneself too much free time? Perhaps it's sometimes necessary to make up weird sorts of motivation, to work on at least personal projects. It seems like I'm most likely to 'find inspiration', when instead I should be working on an assignment (or a hundred) for school (which in this instance, I should say, is actually 'University').
This is not really a huge issue though, since I've got plenty done, either way. I tend to find inspiration, along with motivation, without even trying much.

That said, I've once again tried to figure out what I really want out of my life. Our lives, though at times seemingly long, are also quite short, and we don't get many chances to make the right choices, so to speak. While I do enjoy teaching, should I try 'the music thing' instead? And in that case, how should I go about doing it?
I have also been pondering applying for an exchange student program, in order to see how well I can make it somewhere else, and to the most part on my own. While I do have all the basic skills necessarily for getting through life, I have no real experience living on my own for longer amounts of time, paying taxes, and so on.
The biggest issue, is that I absolutely hate bureaucracy, sending emails, making phone calls, sorting complex things out, and what not. That is where I'd really need to be forced into situations, where I have no choice but to deal with all the increasingly annoying aspects of life.
Life certainly doesn't get easier with age, whereas responsibility increases, along with the excpectations of those surrounding oneself.

So what do I really want to do? That is something which still remains to be seen. I don't have the time to go into all possible options, nor do I think they'd interest you all that much. I just don't want to sit entirely complacent, while studying for an occupation in which I'll certainly be hired, at least somewhere (even though I certainly could get my fair share of enjoyment from that job as well). I have a creative side which needs expression, that much is for certain.
Apart from future occupations, I kind of want to make sure I live my life in general, in a way which I won't come to regret later, which requires more decision-making than I'm used to. As in, what is it I really want to achieve, and how do I get there, and is it worth even trying? Etc.

Other thoughts that have crossed my mind are revolved around health, death, love and friendship. You know, the usual stuff. I'm sure it's far from uncommon to think about these things, among many others.
Cooking food is something I've also been inspired to do more often, along with at least trying to sing a little bit now and then, regardless of my talents or lack of them, in those particular areas. This year has been more full of thought than any other I can recall, I suppose. At least in terms of the future. I suppose there was almost some sort off wall in front of me, before the army was over, where I figured I'd take things one step at a time. Whereas now, life is more like a chessboard, where I always want to stay several steps ahead, but the opponent keeps catching me by surprise, and pulling moves I never even could've expected.
Well, perhaps that was a bit overly dramatic. Then again, life isn't quite as interesting without any drama at all.

In general, despite being temporarily (hopefully) sick and having lots of ponderings in my head, I am doing quite well. Despite all the shite 2016 has thrown at us, there is no reason to not look ahead, and try to fight our way to a brigther and more hopeful future (there comes the dramatism again)!
In 2017, I suppose I'll try to focus a lot on what I want to do as well, and be quite sure that I do something! Chances are I'll be collaborating with other people, quite a lot.

This post seems to be another one of those occasional entries, where I sum up what's happened, lately, because I've failed to do so earlier. So it might be a bit disjointed, leaving us without a clear image of what'll happen with all this in the future. Kind of like this year, amirite?
But that's probably the best way to end it too.

Seems like time is up.
As you may have seem in an earlier post, I started a youtube channel this year. It's not much, but I've gained about 100 subscribers since. In time for the end of the year, I finished one of my best compositions, summing up many of my feelings and thoughts of the year, in just one, long, composition. So it seems I'll leave the year with that, and you as well (for now). Happy New Year!




I think that's all.
See you next year!

Friday, April 1, 2016

The Puzzle Which Is Not a Game


The puzzle is an interesting one for sure. For the longest time, I was only vaguely aware of it, at best. It must’ve lied dormant somewhere within me, waiting for me to actually realize that it has always been there, waiting. I only saw hints of it, here and there. Yet, until a while ago, I didn’t even put two and two together, which is why I didn’t understand that it is all, somehow, connected. Then again, it would be difficult to know that the puzzle is there, before I was even given the parts I needed to solve it. And several, if not most of them, are still missing.

It’s quite a heavy task, trying to envision the size of the puzzle, too. I even think it might be expanding, as we go on. Especially if other people are solving it with me, whether they know about it or not. They bring parts of their own puzzles with them. But that’s alright. I don’t mind helping them with their puzzles. In the end, there are other puzzles that we are all trying to solve together. But what concerns me most, is my own puzzle. Because right now, I have a feeling that it’s a puzzle that I’ll keep on trying to solve, maybe for the rest of my life.

Do I have to solve it? Not really. But I don’t see the point of being given a puzzle that would be so fulfilling to solve - or at least I assume it would be -, and then just giving up without even trying. They say that the journey is the greatest reward anyway, don’t they?

Of course, it’s not a puzzle that just about anyone can see, as solving it only truly matters to me. Or well, I guess that isn’t entirely true, if at all. Though they may not know it, me solving the puzzle would of course impact other people too; some more than others. That is, after all, one of the reasons as to why the puzzle is there in the first place.

The problem is, the puzzle is a part of an even greater puzzle. One which ironically, can feel easier than all the separate parts. The larger the puzzle is, the more possible solutions there are. It’s not that my puzzle is small, or anything. There are several solutions to it as well. But that doesn’t make it easy. You know how it is often said that the end justifies the means? Sometimes, I suppose that may be right. However, when it comes to my puzzle, I think that it’s the other way around. The means justify the end. Which is why there is only really one general way to move forward in solving the puzzle. I really hope I am right. If I am not, I may never solve the puzzle. Then again, if I am wrong, the only solution worth having, was never there in the first place. Either way, I will do my best to solve the puzzle, no matter how difficult it gets, or how long it takes. As with everything, every attempt requires a sacrifice of one kind or another. But so does not doing anything, and I think that that, would be the greatest sacrifice of them all.

What’s that? You want me to quit my waffling, and tell you what my puzzle is? I’m sorry, but that would be pretty difficult! It is my puzzle, in the end. But if you’re really that curious, I can give you a visual.

Imagine a rock. It’s hard, and it is not easily breakable. But this rock is a bit different. In fact, I’m not even sure if it really exists. But more often than not, it may feel as if it does. And I think it’s the same for all of us. Something in our nature, makes us think that the rock is real, at least on some level. I’m sure there are people who are so convinced the rock exists that they’d bet everything they have on its existence. They trust the rock. And just as common, are the people who can feel the weight of this rock, and know in their hearts that it must exist, but they are not happy about it.

Before I can even dream of solving my puzzle, I want to know whether to believe in that rock or not. I think I have an answer. I do believe that it exists, but I strongly doubt that it’s a rock in the first place. There is only one world where I’d wish that it truly was a rock, and that is a world where the rock ensured the solution I want, for my puzzle. I don’t think that is very likely, at least not unless the rock has a will of its own. And even if the rock would exist, I think we all know that generally, rocks aren’t well known for their thinking abilities.

No. I don’t think it’s a rock. At most, it is a globe made out of ice, which people are only mistaking for a rock. It is still hard, and depending on a few factors, it might not break easily, or not at all. I have no illusions of crushing this globe of ice either -nor do I know if I’d want to. I’m hoping that the heat I’m generating from trying to solve my puzzle, will eventually melt this ice globe, into something that’s easier to shape. It’s still difficult to get the ice to look the way I want it to. Maybe it will show no signs of changing its shape at all. But I still, honestly, truly, want to try.

To be honest, I really don’t know if it’s possible to melt the ice, at least not the way I’m trying to solve the puzzle. I swear that sometimes I see it changing its shape, only for it to seemingly return to the way it was before. Still, I get my repose every time I see the small traces of my work, which are undoubtedly there, somewhere. So I keep on working, hoping that I’ll yet see the result of my effort. Not that the effort is not giving, in and of itself. But there is always a slight worry in the back of my mind. The thought that the puzzle is but an ironic display of my own foolishness. But that’s okay. I can enjoy laughing at my own endeavors, no matter how hopeless they may seem, or be. Who is to tell me that it was all for nothing, even if I never solve the puzzle? I’d still have all the experience that I gained on the road.

Wouldn’t it be tragically funny, if there never was a rock, nor a globe of ice, and the puzzle was still unsolvable? At least in the way I wanted it to. If there was no sort of solid structure in my way, but I would still be unable to work my way to a result? That scenario is not an impossibility. You see, in this world, there may be someone who is removing the pieces of the puzzle, just as I lay them out. They may not even know they’re doing it, but that doesn’t necessarily stop them. It’s also not impossible that they know very well that they are removing the pieces, and in fact, they may be removing pieces from other people’s puzzles too! That is, if there even is such a person. But even if there is one, I’m hoping that said person won’t hinder my efforts too much. That would be a shame.

For the sake of fairness, it should be mentioned that I am likely, ruining that person’s puzzle too. Even though there may be a lot of room for our puzzles, some of them will eventually cross paths, and one may have to make room for the other, for better or for worse. That raises an important question that’s left unanswered. Is it right of me, to build my puzzle? Even if it would cross someone else’s? Is one puzzle worth more than the other? I’ll leave you to ponder upon that. I think I have my own answer already, though I’m not sure what exactly to do with it. I still need more pieces for that.

Now I hope that I don’t come across as too selfish. I’m not quite that heartless. I wouldn’t say I’ve gotten to the point where I’m obsessed with the puzzle either. There are always other puzzles, in the greater puzzle, which can be solved. But this puzzle, is one of the ones that currently means the most to me. Don’t be mistaken. The puzzle, no matter how much it may seem like it, is not just a game. Many would tell you otherwise, and the thought has crossed my mind, even though it was immediately dismissed. It is not a game, partly because it is important to me. But more than anything, because it doesn’t only impact me.


In fact, though I didn’t mention it clearly until now, there is one prerequisite for the puzzle to be solved, in any way I’d want it to be. I cannot build it all alone. It’s not because there isn’t time to build it on my own. It’s just that I don’t have, nor will I ever have, all the pieces that are necessary. So in the end, while I will never abandon the puzzle, I can only hope that someone else is solving it on the other side, and that we’ll meet in the middle.

Monday, February 15, 2016

The Concept of Labels


Alright.
Let's dig right into it!

It would seem as though a lot of boxes had to be checked, in order for this entry in my blog to come into existence; I had to think of what to write about, which already happened several weeks ago; I had to tell a lot of people I would be writing this post (and a few had to tell me to write it too); I had to read OneSketchist's post about his blog's fourth anniversary, and realize that February the 11th would be my own blog's third anniversary, and even so, I am late in writing this.

That is, because I have so many other things I should do; I should write that home-exam which I have been neglecting and postponing for weeks; I should finish a commissioned composition that I've been working on for more than a month, but haven't been able to finish; I should read tons of books for school; I should plan my next piano lesson, and so on.

I have also been sleeping without a schedule, and far too little during several nights. I just finished an anime that I strongly recommend, called "Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso". I've been listening to podcasts and the like; just lying in bed listening with my eyes closed. And just now, I spent half an hour in the shower, in complete darkness. And after all this and much more has been done, it would seem I am finally ready to write, and thus sacrificing any dreams of sleeping this night, as it's already late, in more sense than one.

So I guess you could say that everything in my life is fairly normal, as it always is.

Normal.

Well, that's not entirely true. I haven't been doing nothing at all, nor nothing out of the ordinary. For example, I've spent several hours this weekend by drawing, which is definitely unusual. Someone also said something to me a couple of days ago, which gave me a lot of energy. So now, I am going to take a break of half an hour, and finish a debate featuring Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens - among others-, whereafter I'll finally tackle the topic at hand, and try to cover it in quite an amount of detail.

And of course, you won't notice that break, as I am now already back from it. But I felt a need to mention it anyway, in order to break the illusion of flow which would've otherwise been created. Now however, I will get into flow for real.

"Normal". That's an interesting label, don't you think? But even if I could, I'm not actually going to talk about normality, nor our perceptions of it, at least not this time. But instead, of the way I used the word normal (intentionally, as it works a perfect segue for the topic). I used it partly as a joke, to make fun of my own procrastination, and other things that seem to constitute some of my habits in general, whether good or bad. Yet, consequently, I also used it as a sort of a lazy excuse, to dismiss the impact of my actions, or rather, lack of them.

Essentially, I was saying "that's how I've always been, thus it must be right". Now, to some extent, I can see the logic behind that, from an evolutionary standpoint. My lifestyle seems to have been working quite alright for me thus far, which is why it could be logical to assume that it will do so in the future as well. But with a certain amount of extra knowledge, an argument of such nature could easily be debunked. For example, I still currently live at home, with the support of my parents. The second I move away from home, there will be a huge list of new responsibilities laid on my desk. To add to that list, I can't say that my studies are getting easier. To sum it up, I need to accomplish more things, in less time. Taking those facts into consideration, is it really true then that I can keep on going on like I always have, and still manage all those things? Most likely, not to the full extent at least.

Now, all that could've been, and has been said by other people, in ways somewhat similar to this: "Life doesn't get easier the more you grow up". But that is actually not my point! This post isn't going to primarily focus on me either, but rather, on how we just seem to accept certain things for what they seem to be, when maybe we shouldn't really be that hasty.

As I mentioned, I could easily avoid thinking about the implications of my current lifestyle in the future, and give up any hope of improving upon myself in any area, by excusing the intrusion of even the start of that thought with a simple label: "normal".
What if instead of accepting what I do for what it is without a second thought, I allowed myself to have that thought, and decided to do something about the situation?

Well, quite obviously I have, and I haven't stopped there. Not only am I being productive right now, thus countering my normal procrastination, but I've been mentally digging deeper into the subject of, and causality of labels in general. Because "normal" or "unusual", are far from the only labels we use. Same goes for entire concepts. Let's get into what those two words really are.

Concepts and labels can be extremely useful tools, which is why they are so prominent in our languages. They are used to explain, and categorize. But they can also work as shortcuts, as they once they become known to us, are used to chunk a lot of information into just one word, or one concept, and thus, speeding up any process. So in general, you could say that it is wonderful that we have so many labels, and so many concepts. In fact, more than any person could ever count, because we can create new ones just for ourselves with a single thought. Quite ironically, this blog entry is in itself, discussing a concept, or rather, several different ones. They are inescapable, as they are building tools for examining reality.

Look to your left! What do you see? I'm sure that you could come up with several words to explain what you see. A table, one side of a room, etc. Maybe you could even add an adjective or two to what you see. An "ugly" painting, or a "small" pencil. And if you dig deeper, you could get into why the object/s you see is/are there. You are most likely in a room. A "room" in itself, could be said to be a concept. And if you are outside, "the outside" could be said to be a concept too. You just need to mention any word, and a plethora of associations will enter our minds. And some of the associations could be perceived as neutral, wheras others could be assigned value, or may even already have some sort of positive, or negative value to you.

We are constantly blinded by the limitations of our minds. We cannot be objective (well to start with, I don't think that objectivity in its most ultimate form exists). Not that life would be any fun at all if everyone would be objective. Some mathematically inclined people may think that there is a certain beauty to specific kinds of objectivity, and I have no intention of arguing against that, as I can see where these hypotethical (albeit, very real) people are coming from. But I think - and I hope - that we can all agree that life would be meaningless if absolutely everything was objective. Or rather, if we perceived it as being that way. We might live in a deterministic universe with only the illusion of free will, but I won't get into that now. But it doesn't really matter, as long as we can sense subjectivity in one sense or another.

We all have our subjective experience, and no one can actually know what it's like to be you. They can only imagine it, as a concept. And they might even explain aspects of your existence using labels. She's attractive, he's smart, they are stupid, etc. In one way, it works as a shortcut to relay certain (often subjective) information about you. Not necessarily to others, but people might just be thinking those associations in their minds. On the other hand, it "allows" the labeler to move on without digging deeper into what lies behind the label. A shortcut indeed. It is a short thought, that completely cuts away immeasurable quantities of information, and ignores it, focusing on but one aspect. Now again, I see the use of this; in fact, if we didn't use it, the first thought we ever had would take up our entire life, because every single thing can in theory be analyzed for an eternity (if not longer). But clearly, as with anything that can be used, it can be misused?

What I want you to be, is aware of how we use labels in our everyday life. Especially for and by ourselves. Labels are often used to avoid critical thinking, and that is where the shortcuts can become damaging. We take things for granted, because we are used to doing so. There's a very apt saying, which in Finnish is written "tapojensa orja", which roughly translates to "Slaves to our Habits". And that is pretty much what we are. Non-surprisingly, really; it makes sense if we consider anything in existance. We can find clearly distinguishable patterns in most anything, and even in biology things tend to repeat time and time again.

I think that our ability to think critically is something we should nurture, and hold very dear to us. That said, I also realize that we need those breaks from critical thinking. I realize that much more than I probably portray in this post. But if you doubt me, I urge you to go back to the beginning, and read about my habits. They don't seem very critical to me; lying in bed, watching entertainment, procrastinating, etc. In fact, I am a major escapist. But I still do my best to be open minded. I always try to think about even casual things from new angles rather often. Because time and time again, I've noticed things that should've been obvious to me, but simply weren't, because I had never analyzed them in any kind of depth before, whatsoever.
As I mentioned earlier, this inevitably happens to all of us, because there is a limitation to the amount of information we can take in at once, at any given time. This means that we are forced to overlook an abudance of things. This is the very reason that a word such as "focus" needs to exist in the first place.

Of course, the shortcuts that concepts and labels grant us aren't the only things that cause us to ignore critical thinking (apparently, it is something we like to do quite a lot, as a species). One of the things in this world that scares me the most, is herd mentality. If we are actively, or even passively taking part in any kind of congregation, we tend to accept things with much less effort, than we would were we alone. This is true for large groups. Take faith for example. I'm sure I don't even need to explain what I'm referencing here, so I think I'll take myself a little shortcut.
As another and even more scary example, we can take political movements such as the national socialists, a.k.a. nazis.

Now, this kind of mob mentality may take on much more innocent forms, and it exists in smaller followings as well. Take a group of friends. I bet that most of them will have several "inside jokes" which will only make sense to them (and I see as a beautiful thing). As a counterpart though, there are things that will likely be said or done in that group which one member would never think of doing himself/herself. Imagine five friends, who are sober (except for on... Herd mentality), but one of them gets the brilliant idea to walk on the ice during a time at which it is actually dangerously thin. Chances are, no one will object to said masterplan, and they all end up drowning. This is a rather innocent, yet very real scenario that can take place because we abandon our critical thinking. Chances are that any single individual (take note of the particularly subtle Valentine's Day joke) wouldn't dare to break the ice, without the push of said friend. Not even that friend would do it of his own accord.

You get what I'm saying. Now lets combine the two, and we are like to get hate speech. A large group of people, assigning labels to themselves, as well as to other people. The "us against them/the world" mentality. Easy example: "We are united in Christ, as Christians, and we hate the Homosexuals, because they are evil."
Of course, there aren't many people who actually talk like that, and I actually used the label "Christian", and automatically made use of a negative association (homophobia) for my example. You can see how this phenomenon goes full circle.

What goes around, comes around, as they say. Which is quite fitting, as we were talking about habits earlier. I don't consider myself to be a very structured person, but even so, my habits are unmistakably clear to me. I try not to associate myself with too many groups either; no particular political party, no religion, and so on. But I too, am part of many, many groups. Whether I want to or not. And don't get me wrong. Many good things can come from togetherness too; I don't shun it with every bone in by body. But as an extroverted introvert (label spotted!*), I tend to prefer smaller groups, with people I know and trust.
*Lest we forget, labels are indeed useful much of the time.

A couple of posts ago I talked about Bisexuality. That too is a label, which is probably (on the more minor scale) one of the reasons as to why I don't necessarily participate in the "coming out" process all too often. There are many misconceptions and associations that follow such a word, in today's time. And they kind bug me. If there's something I generally dislike, it's being misrepresented (whether ill meaned or not). But in this world, human interaction is necessary (and healthy), so we have to live with always being misrepresented to differing degrees, as as I mentioned earlier, our subjective experience is unique to ourselves.

Other labels that could fit me, are "pianist", or "weird", both of which I take pride in. Or one of my favorites which only I tend to use, which is that I say I am more or less "always happy". My definition of happiness is probably a bit different than most people's though. But at large, what I mean is that nothing seems to be able to keep me down for long periods of time; I recover from most things quickly without taking much damage.
Notice that I mentioned "pride". Let us now switch the weight onto the opposite side of the spectrum, which is "shame".

To be completely honest, I rarely feel shame (which is probably both a benefit, as well as a minor character flaw), not because I am a narcissist (some people have joked about it, but I really am not), but because I don't tend to measure everyday occurrences on a scale of "shamefulness". What I mean is, I rarely allow that word to hold any important meaning to me. Shame is, afterall, a subjectve experience. We sometimes hear "you should be ashamed" if for instance someone has offended a person. But that only refers to a general association between an action and a subjective value, which sometimes is tied to herd mentality. A certain group may dislike the use of certain words, leading to a kind of social space where you utter them at your own risk. The people that hold very specific values may feel that what you say is shameful, but is there really any reason you should feel so?
I also know of some darker examples, which manifest in interactions between just two people, where one uses shame as a tool of control over the other, but I don't want to delve into detail regarding that topic, right at this moment. Just be aware that this is a documented, and unfortunately, a relatively common phenomenon. It can be a priest and a follower of a church, a mother and a child, or two people in a relationship of any kind.

I just stripped a large following, into a small group, and into just two people. Now, we get to you, in particular. Are you excited?

This is where I wanted to get all along. I aim to tie together habits, labels, and our subjective experience. I've noticed an alarming rise of depressed and anxious people these past years. There are plenty of reasons for this, and I may or may not go into them in another post in the future. What I do know, is that the reasons are to an extent a side effect of our global political, economical, and social state. Either way, it's a sad reality, yet a true one; people at large are simply not feeling nearly as "happy" as they could feel. But aside from all external explanations, let's take a short look at what is happning inside some of these people.

I've spent a lot of my time by listening to depressed people, both online as well as "IRL". And I don't think it's any secret that most of them have a kind of voice in their head which tells them how much they suck, how they should feel ashamed, and how they will never accomplish anything. The voice in the head is more literal for some people, and more of just general thoughts for others. However, it is not quite like the auditive hallucinations that schizophrenics suffer from. Do not be mistaken; people who are not depressed can have similar thoughts as well. Maybe some people suffer from a kind of lesser value complex, and others just have a very vivid internal monologue, which points out things that said person thinks could be improved in him- or herself.

But for many people suffering from depression, this inner voice can be more constant, it can feel unavoidable, and I would like to claim that it is to a huge extent "delusional". Of course, that voice is a part of said people, but I refer to it as a separate entity, both because it's easier to write, and because it is also a generalizable symptom of a real psychological disease. It will use labels such as "worthless", and attack sufferes from every angle that they have a fear attached to. If you want to hear a rather short and a very good example of what it can sound like, I strongly urge you to take a listen to this.

I called the voice delusional, but as it is a part of people, it knows just where to strike, and just like a good lie, it may combine words into a sentiment based on partial truths. Or in other instances, it will not; a common example would be "no one cares about you", which simply is statistically, extremely implausible for any given individual. But whether what the voice says is true or not doesn't always matter to the listener. Some listeners may be well aware of what is true and what is not, but it's still far from a pleasant experience. Or state of mind, rather, as it can go on for days, weeks, months or years.

How do you fight this?
Well, most people can't (nor should they try to) do it on their own. Friends can help, psycho the rapist (perhaps preferably written as one word) services are strongly recommended, and in many cases, medication will be used on the side. What worries me is when people are only given medication and are then left to their own devices. Rarely is that enough to get you through depression.
But this blog post is not in essence about how you deal with depression. There are several thorough "guides" or articles that any of you readers who either have a need of them, or simply take an interest in, can go read up on online.

What I wanted you to take note of, was the labels that are used, and how they become a habit, in a form of an unhealthy mantra. If we do any activity for a long time, we physically develop from it. If we go to the gym, our muscles develop, if we draw, our motoric skills improve, if we learn arithmetics, we develop new neurological patterns.
If every day, you can't help but draw attention to negative aspects (as perceived by you, or "the voice") of yourself, you eventually turn that into a habit, and your brain will be affected physically by it. Now, I don't want you to be afraid of any permanent "damage" to the brain or anything. What can be created, can be destroyed, reshaped, or avoided; a new path can be built around it, etc.

Either way, thinking in such patterns easily becomes an "evil", self-fulfilling circle. And that is essentially, the power a few labels can have on us, whether external, or internal. Quite naturally, depression is not that easy to summarize, nor so simple, functionally. In fact, there are at least 9 different kinds of depression, if not more. And each kind, can still be a unique experience. But the fact still remains; labels affect us every day, both positively and negatively.

However, if things were "that easy", I would suggest that a large part of the problem lies in how much weight people grant those labels. Because to me, words such as "worthless" mean nothing, in terms of value (when spell checking, I realize how ironic that sentence became). There is no worthless person on this planet. As a label, it seems arbitrary to me. I guess that what it is implying is that the person in question feels that he/she will not amount to anything, or at least not to her/his dreams and desires. Or once again, it can refer to the delusional belief that other people don't care about them; they "hold no worth to others".
The labels can blind people, and they become much, if not everything that they worry about. Am I pretty? Am I fat? Am I liked? Am I a good person? Am I stupid? Do I deserve this? Do other people think this and this about me?
Am I "normal"?

For some reason, we can get stuck on those arbitrary labels, instead of thinking about things on a larger scale, or from a differt perspective. But this is all easy for me to say, as I have never really worried much at all about any of those things. I think a lot of our thought processes are tied to our upbringings, and I might simply have been lucky. I do have a conscience, of course, and I DO feel shame from time to time. But usually, that is only if I've done something I really regret, or if I think I got too carried away in a social situation, and hurt someone's feelings, without good reason.
But on any given day, chances are I haven't spent a single thought on worrying about most of those labels, and if I find myself doing it, it's usually accompanied by some irony. Even while thinking about writing this post, and when I'm actually writing it, I have been thinking more about how labels affect people in general, than on how they directly affect me. I do have labels of my own though (I know of one in particular, which my friends will know I often use as a sad joke), but none that tend to leave that negative an impact on my life at large. To give an example, I do to a certain extent care about how I look. So I guess that I actually shave once a week or so... yeah...
Please, don't misinterpret this as me fellating myself (a skill I wish I had; not even ashamed to admit that). What I'm trying to say, is that it is possible to think of things from different perspectives, and more deeply and truthfully than you ever could by just attributing a label to something. And chances are that if you manage, you'll overtime get a more stable sense of self.
For those of you that don't know, a lot of unhappines is born because people's imagined "self", and real "self" are quite far apart. That, or the "self" they hope they could be can feel (or in some cases be) unachievable. Hence, when people say things such as "finding yourself", it can actually be directly associated with psychology, in a rather concrete sense.

But as I said. Things aren't that easy. Even so, taking all that in mind, I recommend that you think a second time when you excuse an action with a label, or especially, if you beat yourself up about some perceived aspect of yourself.

As for this week, I think I'll go with the "just do it" mentality (which is another thing that someone told me a while ago). I'm starting by writing this post. As I've decided not to sleep tonight (I would only get 3 or so hours of sleep, so I'll sleep during the day tomorrow instead. Don't worry... It's normal...), I'll probably just keep on rolling all the way until I get back home after school today. I have several hours of "nothing" between classes, so I'll use that time to plan my piano lesson, and prepare some things for the exam, as well as return some books to the library.

If you have a label you constantly apply to yourself that particularly worries you, but you know you could do something about, I also recommend just doing said thing. Because if we can develop "negative" habits, we sure can develop "positive" ones too. And even more so, we can use labels that we associate positive things with, to motivate us further. Be creative!



I am mostly finished with the topic now. I feel like I started of well, but somewhere near the end I may have dropped my handle on my writing to a greater or lesser degree. I guess that is understandable, or at least somewhat excusable, as I have already managed to write more than 4000 words. You can be the judge of that, because as we've established, I rarely put serious effort into judging myself.

However, I want to mention a couple more things. It should really be clear from my text, but I wanted to give a more specific example of how the associations that tag along labels can be damaging to entire concepts. I once wrote a post on here, about "Taboo" (and morality). We may make horrible moral judgements if we use a label instead of critical thinking. Take something such as "polygamy". The associations around the word are to a large extent, negative. Yet, if you read my post, you may find that in several cases, the concept doesn't have to be as bad as we at first might assume.
But, to pick an even less relevant and less controversial example, think about the witch-hunts. A huge amount of people were labeled "witches", and were killed for no good reason. Think about what "jews" have had to go through, through history. Or the impact of "niggers", as a label. Of course, it's not only the label itself that causes all those problems, but what lies behind them. But they certainly don't help, and they certainly make it easy for people not to think critically. The other thing is that we occasionally do something without really knowing why, because that's how we've learned to do things. We forget the reason behind our actions, if we even ever knew them. We can be "nice" just to be nice, or "loyal" to a brand just because. We see ourselves as "loyal" customers. Just look at the X-Box versus Playstation, or LoL vs DotA 2, or Microsoft vs Mac subcultures that are sometimes at each other's throats without good reason. In most cases, I don't advocate doing something without knowing why. That is, don't decide upon an opinion and then look for reasons; instead, first find reasons and then conclude your opinion.


And now, I am really done with the topic. I hope that the read wasn't boring.

I feel as though this was quite an apt post, for celebrating my blog's third anniversary. Not only did I procrastinate and postpone it to the point where I was late, but I watched an anime instead of writing it on time, and I made it a long, kind of philosophical mess of a read. I've been listening to classical music during the entire time too. I started with quite a bit of Chopin, because the anime (Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso) that I mentioned in the beginning really got me into a classical mood. I am thinking of learning how to play "Clair de Lune" on the piano now too.

If you want to know how good the anime is, I give it three tears out of three:










































This is not even the first time that I take a picture of myself weeping (the last time was probably documented as proof that I do have emotions [because the 'tears' are clearly not tap water *cough* *cough*]). It's such a rare event, that I wanted to capture the moment. That's what the final episode of the anime did to me, so I urge you to give it (or anime in general) a chance. This was naturally a drama anime, which tells the story of a pianist, and a violinist, among other characters.
If I really wanted to, I could probably worry about how my hair looks super messy and ridiculous (I'll be getting a haircut soon though), about how I have a very slight yet noticable (and unpleasant) amount of beard showing in this picture, or I could even care about how I have a weird facial expression. But I choose not to, because I don't really think that it's important for me to do so. Those may all be true facts, but I don't think it's all that healthy to be afraid of what you look like all the time, at least not to the extent where it has a serious impact on you. I definitly take several pictures at times when I take selfies though, and choose to keep the best one (which often just means the funniest), so I do get the other side of that aspect too.

Unfortunately, I haven't made much original music lately, because of the reasons I mentioned up top; time, other priorities, etc.

BUT! I have started uploading videos of me playing the piano onto youtube. I'd be happy if you checked this one out:







Thanks :)
I will be uploading every now and then, so if you like it, stay tuned for more!


I am glad that I finally wrote this post. No matter how others will like it, I feel a sense of accomplishment. It's now also one less thing that I feel a need to do. Writing it was rewarding! Now, I will just have to spell check it, which will take quite some time... And trust me, there will be several errors that are left in.


If any of you really read this far, thank you for sticking with me! I'm glad that I've been keeping up with this blog for 3 years, and even if I've not written all too regularly (I even stayed true to my New Year's Resolution of not stressing myself out over my "ocd" in regards to productivity, and skipped out on writing an entry this January), I am happy with what I have achieved. I hope I will continue to write long and convoluted posts about just about anything, in the future too (this one reached 5000+ words, which is a bit insane, especially as it's not even my longest entry). I also hope that you'll return here and check by every now and then!


However, until that now and then, I think I'll wrap this up for now. Don't forget to comment if you feel the urge. Remember what Nike and Shia said: "Just do it" ;)


I hope you'll have a (insert optional label here) day!

Thursday, December 31, 2015

End of the Year


We live in a strange world.

It's pretty unusual for me to feel like I feel now. You could say I am in a state of slight emotional turmoil. It was worse an hour ago, when I was having trouble breathing (don't worry; not a panic attack, I've never had one). Or rather, I did breathe okay, but at an accelerated pace, because my body needed more air, as my blood was flowing so quickly (which also resulted in me feeling a bit physically ill [a pressure in my guts/stomach]). Luckily, I have asthma medication lying around (I don't have normal asthma, but I still take medication daily, as a way of preventing a cough that sticks around for months), so that issue was quickly and swiftly solved.

But yeah, as I'm feeling weird, which I almost never do, I figured I'd capture the moment on my blog, as I need to write one entry anyway. It also helps me calm down, to write about how I feel.

Now, let's start by saying I am usually among the most stable people around. I still am stable, of course. What I'm saying is, I don't usually need to deal with emotions too much, because I am rarely affected. I am constantly happy, so it's easy for me to brush the darker aspects of life aside.

One of the things that contributes to my current state, is of course, the immense lack of sleep lately. I have been working really hard to get a lot of tracks finished before the year comes to an end. Especially these last few weeks (as usually, I wait until the very last possible moment to do something). The last time I felt anything remotely like this, was in the army, due to quite different reasons than this time.

In case you didn't realize, this is going to be another one of those rather personal posts.

I'm actually feeling okay now. I have my way of dealing with things, so I'm becoming more calm every second. Good thing I still managed to capture the moment in this text; I was worried I'd be too late. I am a pretty weird person, so I kinda like finding out new things about myself, in a philosophical sense. And this is certainly new.

Now what could get me into this weird emotional atmosphere? I don't really intend for this post to be negative as a whole. I don't think I'm going to make it all too long either (as I mentioned, I am in a real need for some sleep). [EDIT: I mean... At least the length is readable!]

Remember last month when I was talking about Bisexuality? Yes you do. Well, I also mentioned how I haven't had a crush on anyone for ages (probably 5 years or so). Now, you may think you see where this is going. But you'd probably be partly wrong in your first guess, because I wouldn't say I tend to work like most people do.

Well, funny thing is, less than a month after writing about me having a hard time finding someone that's interesting enough for me, and checks my boxes for personalities I like, I found someone. Or rather, said person found me. The thing is of course, it's not someone who lives in Finland, but someone I've primarily had contact with via Skype. I started talking to him pretty much a week ago.

I'm not going to go into detail about our talks, but I quickly realized that this is just my kind of person in every way. I pretty much became infatuated during our first real conversation! And imagine how surprising that is to me, who usually doesn't find anyone interesting?

{I just came back from a short break (someone else contacted me on Skype; I have like 1 million people I talk to). I feel normal now; I guess I recover quickly. I am not even tired, despite having slept almost none at all for several nights. Which is good, because I've been looking forward to celebrating New Year's Eve with my friends. Let's see if I am able to drive though, or if I should give that  to someone else (because I obviously shouldn't drive if I get too tired later).}

Anywho, back to this. I instantly found myslf attracted to the guy I'm talking to, on multiple levels. The most interesting thing is, how very much alike me he is. We seem to think in very similar manners, to the extent that it almost makes you wonder if I have a lost twin. Many people look for people who are different from themselves, but I guess I just have a thing for people that are like me. And I think I know why; it feels like you already know them incredibly well.

As I mentioned in my previous entry, the difference isn't necessarily huge between people in a relationship, and extremely close friends. Especially, if it's a friend you've known since daycare, and you're pretty much able to read what they're thinking, and vice versa. It's rare to find such friendhips in this age for many people, as well. And that's just the thing. Even though we haven't known each other for a long time, we seem to be able to understand one another extremely well, almost as if we HAD known each other for years upon years. I personally, wouldn't ever be interested in entering in a relationship with someone that I couldn't also view as a friend.

Of course, life would be too generous if things were that easy. The guy I like lives in another country, among other things. But that only matters to me to a certain extent, in the end, I feel. The reason I mentioned frienship, is because that's what we currently are; friends. And that's fine by me, because I don't see a huge difference. What is important to me, is that I can get to know the person, and be happy around them.

It's pretty weird. Usually I'd be very sceptical of people that become infatuated so quickly, and over the net too! But I don't feel like anything is weird here. We'll see what happens with our friendship, of course. I imagine we will become quite good friends, to say the least. I think that the fact we were so honest with each other from the start, allowed us to skip the step of trying to break each other's barriers. We felt at ease talking to one another, from the get go.

I was originally going to write about how happy I was to realize that I still have the potential to like people, as I had always seen the issue as "I have too high standards", which may well be true to a certain extent. I was also going to make a pun including "A New Hope", with the new Star Wars movie out and all. Of course, I always knew that I must still be able to like someone. But getting the confirmation made me happy. Though as you probably understand, I can't imagine myself finding another person I just happen to like to such an extent from the start at the moment. People aren't that easily replacable. Which makes the fact that we just happened to meet each other, so intriguing! I look very much forward to talking more to him, to get to know him even better.

I got consent for writing about this, of course. Not that I legally need to, of course, but as it involves other people, I prefer to have it.
So what got me into a state of emotional turmoil a bit earlier then? It's that I got it confirmed that this person is unhappy on some level (of course, I have more details, but I'm not going to go into them, as I don't even know for sure if he wants me to mention it to start with). I pretty much never get sad because of myself. I tend to always be happy. But I do have great sense of empathy, so when someone I care about to such an extent is not feeling well, it leaves its marks on me. And now I know just how deeply it can cut.

It doesn't help that another great friend of mine is struggling with cancer, among other things right now. I know a lot of people, both IRL and through the internet. I know the ugly truth, which is that incredibly many people are dealing with depression/anxiety/whatnot for several reasons, in this day and age. Probably partly because I myself am always fine, I really take their problems to heart, and do what I can to help. In this unfair world where I've been lucky enough to get a life that's wonderful, it's the least I can do.

So that's my situation right now. I'm glad I got to write about it. Sorry that it's a pretty messy post; haven't slept in a long while, and I'm not sure if there's any way I could write about this in an order that makes sense, and will make you understand. So you can make of this what you will. The end of the story thus far, is that I'm incredibly happy to get to talk to such a person, no matter our relationship; that's just a word anyway.

As usually, it's time to pitch my music. I've been super active lately (thus, so little sleep), and I've reached my goal. In a few hours, I'll have uploaded 52 tracks to Newgorunds this year. One for each week, you could say. I had that exact same number of music uploads last year too. I had to finish so many tracks these last weeks, all while celebrating Christmas and other stuff...

I think I'll relax a bit on the music front next year, and focus more on writing, and on other less important things such as my studies and sleeping... I guess that's my general New Year's promise. To not set up stupid rules to follow about "amounts of uploads", not to speak of the fact that I have one blog post here for every month this year. It's taking my OCD too far (I don't really have OCD; just a saying).

No worries though. There's still lots of music in store for next year! There's no stopping me. I'm working on the BRUCE project, and I've been planning a ton of collaborations with other artists. I am excited for what the new year will bring!

While I have uploaded many things lately (even got 2nd place in a competition), I'd like you to listen to what I composed today. One of the people I know on Skype, asked me to write a track for him, so as I needed to fill one spot out of those 52 tracks, I spent most of my day today creating this piece of music:





I tried to summarize my emotions in the composition, and I think it worked out quite well.



Now, to end this year off, I have a question for the few of my readers that exist.

This is my blog, so I'm obviously going to write about what I want, to the most extent. But do you want to read more of these slightly more personal entries in the future, or not? I might blog more often if I keep a bigger focus on my own life, than on interesting philosophical thoughts, and other weird things. But will it be as interesting? What do you think!?

Of course, it'll always be a mixture. But I think it's a shame I've written so little lately.

Well... I guess that really is it. It has been an interesting year to say the least! I look very much forward to the coming one. I hope you do too!

Also, I want to make sure you don't start to worry about me because the start of this entry was a bit on the dark side. I am always happy, so there's really nothing to worry about. It's just me worrying about other people, as I will continue to do :)

So now;

See ya next year!!!


//LSD

Monday, November 30, 2015

Bisexuality


You know, I've been sleeping way too little this weekend. Not for any specific reason. I just kinda didn't go to sleep one of the nights. I did take a long nap earlier today, but my lack of sleep is still responsible for me having a headache right now. But I don't have time to go to sleep right now, as it's 6am, and my school starts in some 4 hours (EDIT: damn this took a long time, as there was so much grammar to check). So I took a headache relieving pill instead. But not to worry! I will definitely go to sleep after school, and I have nothing I have to do on the next day. So I'll have time to readjust my sleeping schedule with ease.

Alrighty then. The topic of today's (tonight's) blog entry is one that I've been meaning to write about for some time. I was supposed to write about it last month, but I was too lazy and procrastinated for too long, so it was pushed over to this month instead. And now, it's already the final day of this month. Time sure is flying by, huh? So much I want to do, but so little time to do it. I know that me speaking about the lack of time is a recurring theme in my blog, so it might get tiresome. But then again, it's also a recurring thing in life, so I think that most people can relate.

I made a sudden decision to write this post a bit differently than I had earlier planned, today. For quite some time, I had planned to write about things such as the myths revolving around bisexuality, as well as the scientific research that has been done, etc.
Because there are several myths floating around for sure, and there have also been some interesting studies made. But I decided for a few reasons to write things from a bit of a different perspective.
To begin with, I figured that most of you people that are actually reading this, aren't really in any urgent need of a briefing on what bisexuality is, and all the information there is about it. I feel like most of you already are sensible people, who can already think for yourselves around the matter, and reach logical conclusions. Another reason, is that I simply don't think it would be super interesting to most people, as factual information is really only relevant to people that already care about the topic to begin with, or to the ones that are confused (hehheh) about what bisexuality actually is about. Which I don't imagine that you are. But please, be my guest and ask anything you want about the topic, and I'll make sure to answer it according to the best of my ability. Afterall, most questions will be really easy for me to answer accurately, as I myself, am indeed bisexual.

As I am bisexual, I figured that I would share some of my own thoughts and experiences instead. Some of you might find it interesting. I at least, like opportunities where I get to look into the lives of other people. One of the problems is that I don't really know what specifically to write about, or in what order. So I guess I'm just going to let this entry be a bit of a flow of thoughts.

Personally, I have known about my sexuality for as long as I can remember; even before I knew of a label I could use to define my sexuality, which I think was in the third grade (of our equivalent to elementary school). I know that most people probably don't really figure their sexuality out fully, before they hit puberty. In fact, it may sound weird to some that that is even possible, as so many changes happen in people during puberty, especially regarding sexuality, and how it expresses itself. But for me, only the latter of those two really developed.
Btw, in case it hadn't occurred to you yet, this will be an entry that could be interpreted as "oversharing", as I'm not really afraid to present myself like I am. Read with own discretion.

Backing up a bit, I guess I never really saw the big difference between "girls" and "boys". I mean, I got the logical and easy to see parts. "Girls are more prone to behaving like this (which btw, to a certain extent is cultural)", and "boys (usually) have a penis", and the list goes on forever, I guess. I was never confused about that part. But what I didn't really get, was why people tended to (and still tend to) view people from the different sexes so differently, based on their sex (in my experience).
Actually, I guess I partly got that too. I was never really oblivious, nor stupid. But I didn't really feel it in the same way.
I think that as children, many people don't see the big deal, regardless of sexuality. I'm sure that some of you can remember playing with the girls and boys in daycare, without ever giving any room for the thought "they are girls, and I am a boy", or if you are a girl reading, "they are boys and I am a girl". There isn't necessarily a need for that thought when you are a child, playing a game. And the social distinctions between women and men don't really hit you when you're that young, for most people.

No. Of course, we will always see and know the difference. In later years, say your first years of school, you might notice the difference between how the sexes are treated and how they act more, and especially in high school, the differences will become more clear. Generally, women tend to enter puberty earlier than men too, which is where a certain divide might happen for a short while. And of course, it is very true, the sexes are different on certain levels. I think that I know that better than most people. I also know that I should probably get to my point soon too, as I have barely even started, and there's already a lot of text on display for you.
I don't know how universal this is, but generally, there is this weird rule that men have to take off their hats in Church here, while women can keep them. This is a tradition that my teacher at the time was sure to remind me of, more than once, when I wanted to keep my cap on, but wasn't allowed to, while I meanwhile noticed that the girls got to keep their headwear. I didn't understand the need to make such an exception in the rule. At the time, I felt unfairly treated. Now, I just think it's silly. Of course, I rarely ever visit church anymore, as I've never really been religious.

How does this at all relate to bisexuality, you might ask? It doesn't necessarily have to do so, as many heterosexual people have similar experiences. But I feel like it is relevant to me; for how I've known about my sexuality for a long time. Nowadays, I know the history behind why women and men are treated differently, I know about the cultural factors, and I have a deeper understanding of the impact made by the biological differences. But obviously, at the time I didn't know "why" things were like they were.

Now, I'll draw a parallel to another story (quite literally), and you'll probably understand why my line of thinking at the time was relevant.
You know all of those old tales, where the princess and the prince, or the guy and the girl live happily forever after in the end? As a kid (and still, as an adult), I enjoyed stories. But similarly to how I viewed the difference in how women and men are treated, I didn't ever really understand why it was always a man, and a woman that lived happily ever after in the stories. I knew that it was pretty much always the case. But no one had ever really talked to me about sexuality and relationships (which isn't surprising, as I was 5 years old), so I guess you could say I was confused about why that was the case.

I can't say for sure that my next memory is accurate, as we humans have a tendency to create altered memories, especially if the memory is not vivid, and pretty old. But I feel like I at some point did ask one of the daycare ladies about why it was always a prince and a princess that lived happily ever after. Now, I do not remember the reply I got, which makes me suspect that this memory, might not be entirely true. Sometimes, it's difficult to tell. A bit like it can be difficult to accurately recall a dream you had a few nights ago, unless it was vivid. Either way, I know that I myself, inspired by the stories, also liked to draw princes and princesses (very ugly drawings, I can tell you; I don't have time to dig any up right now, but if I remember, I can try to post one at a later point, on another post). It's a bit of a shame that I never drew a prince and a prince, or a princess and a princess (not that I can recall at least). There you see the impact that the society around you has on you, starting at an early age.

I wish I knew how much of sexuality we are born with, and how much impact our surroundings have on it. What scientist currently know, is that it's likely a bit of both. I know that I personally liked to play with barbies (with my sister, whom I always annoyed and wanted to play with as a younger brother). I have no idea whether they would've interested me had I been an only child. But similarly, I also played with cars and action figures. And I built with legos, played BRIO's hammer game, etc. Point being, having a sister allowed me to play with all of her toys too (don't you even dare misinterpret that), and I can be thankful for the fact that my parents let me play with whatever I wanted. Even very violent video games and such, until they decided I was like to get addicted to gaming at a very young age. You may be wondering if I am writing my life story here, as everything seems so disconnected and irrelevant. Which is fine. But I warned you in the beginning; I will write this as a flow of thoughts in whatever order I want to. I think it'll get more interesting soon though.

I honestly don't know how much impact your toys and your behavior as a child has on your eventual sexuality. But I do believe that there is at least some correlation.

Here's the final thing from my early childhood though. I always had friends of both genders, which is a privilege I know some of my friends didn't have. I have never really been shy or awkward around the opposite sex, nor the same one, probably partly because of this. But I also know that I had certain friends (of both genders) whom I thought were really cool at the time, and I looked up to. And looking up to someone, is really the closest I ever came to anything related to my sexuality while still in daycare.
However, there was a certain distinction between the friends I had at the time. I have always been lucky enough to have a huge pool of friends. But some, naturally, I viewed as better friends than others. And this is relevant.

When it comes to human relationships, friendship and romance only has a very limited set of differences from each other. The potential infatuation is one of them, as is usually the desire for the other person in a sexual sense (though technically, both of those can be present in "normal" friendships too, though that is more rare). In the end, being "together" with someone, is partly a status thing, an announcement of kinds. While it is also a difference in how your relationship will play out compared to a friendship, of course. But I'd like to go back to the biology of these things. What is really the huge difference? It's the specific hormones at play, to the most part. But the empathy, and the togetherness that is shared, probably became a strong trait in us humans because it allows us to coexist next to each other, and even more so, help each other out. From an "objective" standpoint, relationships aren't too different from friendships. Which one you value more is also relative: "bros before hoes, man!". There are also fun terms, such as "Bromance". Which I don't think is entirely wrong.

The relativity of sexuality in general, becomes interesting when we compare ancient Rome and Greece, to the Middle Ages, and finally, to the current time. The apparent percentage of LGBTQ+ people, and their level of acceptance in society seems to change based on time and place. Whether that's because people are hiding their feelings, unaware of them, or really were brought up to not get certain feelings in the first place, we can speculate about. I'm sure it's a mixture of all of them. Now where was I going?

Friendships don't have to be viewed as being super different than romantic relationships. As I mentioned, there are different levels of friendships. And when you reach a very high level of friendship and intimacy with someone, you might get what I mean better. And I'm talking about heterosexual, same sexed people now. Aside from the sex and the infatuation (aka, hormones), very little is different from a relationship. I have of course, mostly been using the word "relationship" during this entry, in the terms of an actual romantic/sexual relationship, even if it can mean relationships of any kind, usually. To avoid confusion.

Point is. As I am and have as long as I can remember (probably always, to some extent) been bisexual, I don't really have any of the walls to what gender I could potentially enter in a relationship with. And this is what was always clear to me, from a very young age. All those other memories and points I brought up, really only relate to the same way of thinking, and why I've always felt like I do. In theory, I could identify as pansexual too (there are certain differences, but whatever; there are as many sexual labels as there are metal genres). But "bisexual" is the first of the ones i heard that fit me, and I've rolled with it since.

I just noticed that my headache is now gone. Nice!

Most of what I've written so far have been different thoughts I've had very early in my life, and how I knew about my sexuality way before puberty. But the most compelling example, is of course, that I already occasionally had dreams and fantasies of sexual nature, to certain extents, at the age of 8-9 years old, which actually isn't very rare, but naturally, in a more curious and primitive sense than fantasies may play out at an older and more understanding age (you might've had some at that age too). Whether it's natural at that age already, or if it's because of the media we consume doesn't really matter. But the interesting thing is of course that even at that age, the fantasies and dreams featured people of both the same, and the opposite sex, for me. Often both in the same fantasy/dream.

So after countless paragraphs, I've explained what my own experiences of my bisexuality has been very early in my life, and before puberty. That is easily the most boring part of this entry. The more interesting part, starts when I go to high school, aka, when I reached the age of puberty.
As I mentioned, my sexual identity wasn't really altered much at all due to puberty. But how I expressed it, was altered for sure. I'll preface this section by saying that I did have a minor crush on a girl that was in my class, still in the equivalent of elementary school here in Finland. But not many months after high school, I developed a huge crush on one of the boys in my class. The crush I had earlier didn't even compare. Probably because it was pre-puberty, and the necessary hormones couldn't really be active at the time.

Naturally, the crush I had in high school, was a bit of a hopeless one. Some of my friends know who I had a crush on, but I feel like as it involves other people, I won't be sharing the details. Let's just say that the crush was an unrealistic one, and that I knew it was hopless even at the time, for several reasons. None of them were really related to the fact that I was technically in the closet at the time either.

But the most annoying thing by far, was that the crush stuck around for years. My young teenage hormones were really persistent, I guess. Anyway, I just told you this to show as confirmation that yes, I am indeed still bisexual even during and after puberty, and aware of it. I am lucky to never really have been "confused" about anything concerning me. Ironically, some people still believe that bisexuals are just "confused". To be fair, there are some gay people who use bisexuality as a stepping stone, when coming out of the closet, because that may feel safer to them at the time. Unfortunately, it takes a bit away from the credibility of people claiming to be bisexual. But as I said earlier, I suspect that you readers are not confused about the existance of bisexuality in both women, men (whatever gender), and in nature too.

It's pretty ironic that I was really relieved when I finally realized that my crush was forever over. While now, I haven't had a crush on anyone in years. I do find certain people attractive, yes. But I haven't experienced infatuation for a long time. But most of that, is because I've been busy doing other stuff. I believe that once I begin to chill a bit more when it comes to always working on projects and other stuff (which is already happening), I'll be able to seek out relationships more actively. I kinda skipped that part of finding a partner in high school and the gymnasium. You know what they say: Intelligent people seek out sexual relationships later in life on avarage, hehhe (a joke; relax).

But yeah, for a long while, I told myself that I wouldn't seek out any relationship before I had completed my time in the army. And based on the amount of breakups I heard occurred during our involuntary army service, that decision might not have been as stupid as it might seem.
But that's of course only a minor reason. The main reason is that simply, I haven't been interested in anyone, for a long time. And the rare occasion where I have had some interest, they were already "occupied" :p

I have this very annoying dilemma, you know. Different bisexual people have different preferences. Some may be right in the middle, some may be more drawn to men, and some more to women. Just like heterosexual, and gay people, have different preferences too. This is probably as obvious to all of you, as it is to me. But I fall on a very annoying part of that spectrum:
I find myself usually being more physically attracted to women in general, while I find it easier to be romantically attracted to men. That is to say that not only is the pool of men that are not heterosexual pretty small to begin with, but I don't find most men all too attractive in general. On the opposite side, I find more women physically appealing, but only a few of them have several traits that I'd be romantically interested in. And I am a very emotional person. Not meaning that I cry a lot or something like that, but rather that I like to think a lot, both introspectively, and on the social spectrum. Even if I feel that someone is indeed physically attractive, I wouldn't have sex with them if I didn't like their personality; that feels pointless to me.
Ultimately, what this means for me, is that on both the male and the female side, my standards are pretty much "too high".
That said, I've been feeling myself letting go a bit of this thought. It is still true, initially, but I am more open to different kinds of people than I've been earlier in my life, now. I think that humans are wired to some extent, to find people more attractive, when they are "open" themselves. After all, nature has worked out for quite some time. We'll see what happens with this later in my life. And remember, I warned you that I'd be oversharing, so it's your own fault if your read this despite not really wanting to.



Let's talk about coming out (of the closet) now. I want to make one thing clear to you. This blog post is not me "coming out". You may view it as such if you wish, it doesn't really matter. But that's not really why I'm writing it. I mostly want a place to go back to look at my own thoughts, which is why I'm writing this in such an odd and pretty loose form.
No, I've been out for quite some time. And still, some of you readers may not have known that I am bisexual. I'll tell you about my views, of coming out, from my experience.

I'm a pretty silly person. I've never been afraid that I'd be judged for my sexuality. I could talk over pretty much anyone who had an objection to it, and come out on top (hehhe). And it was a very long time ago that I last had feelings of insecurity. And I've never had any deep rooted fear of what other people think of me. I think this is to a huge extent, because I've always had very great and supporting friends, and well as a nice family I know that wouldn't judge me. But I still almost never come out. It's because of the same feeling I had about the differences between "boys and girls" when I was younger. I've never really seen why the fact that I am bisexual, would matter that much to anyone, unless it's currently relevant. It really isn't that big a deal to me, especially not in the age that I am now, with many of my friends already knowing about my sexuality. I am lucky to be born in a place where there is very little social repercussion to coming out, compared to many other places.

No, the reason I dislike coming out, is for the same reason that I HATE giving random phonecalls. I hate calling strangers, and even to some people I know, asking for information, or telling them stuff etc. (In fact, I have to make a phonecall soon). It's because the situation feels so unnatural and weird to me, I guess. I am fully aware of why I need to do it, but it feels weird. And this is how it affects coming out:

It's never a good icebreaker. "Hey dude, btw, I'm bisexual".  On the other hand, if someone asks about my sexuality, or if the topic is otherwise relevant in a discussion, it's the easiest thing in the world for me to talk truthfully. Like when writing this post, for example.
Actually, I'm fairly sure that not even my parents know about the fact that I am bisexual. I guess they'll find out if they ask, or if I ever bring home a boyfriend. Because in that case, it's relevant. But it's just not really a normal discussion, you know?

I also know my mom would react by believing I've "hidden it" all these years, from some kind of a fear of being judged. And that kind of a reaction would feel out of place for me, because despite it might not look it, I am a very happy person, in general. I am almost never sad, and I always have something to do or aspire to.

So really, my whole thoughts on the "coming out" is that it feels so weird to me. Heterosexuals don't come out, right? No. I understand it is because it's a minority, and people might not expect you to be, so you kinda announce it. And it's invisible (in most cases). It's not like black people have to come out saying "I'm black" (applicable to all races). Because that, if anything, would be weird. But unless you're very flagrantly gay, or show your sexuality through other actions, it will not be known to other people. There, comes the reason to come out. It's the culture around us that makes it necessary. So I've done it occasionally. But if I could, I wouldn't hesitate to flip a switch that would just make the entire world know, without making a big deal out of it.

And that is really it. The making "a big deal out of". I don't need that in my life. I'd like to be appreciated for who I am, rather than what I am, to a certain extent, I guess. And I am too, which is nice. I'm just trying to explain why I personally don't come out often. It's not because I fear you or anyone else will judge me, so don't take it personally if you've known me even for a long while, without knowing. I do trust you in that case, so there's no  reason to be offended if I haven't come out to you. One of my best friends (I think) doesn't know that I'm bisexual, though I haven't precisely hidden it.

But as I said, sometimes, "coming out" is a necessary evil. So I've done it a few times. The first time was actually at a pretty late age (I think I was 17?). The reason I hadn't really told anyone earlier, is the same reason I mentioned above. Although I have very good friends, most of my frindships haven't been based around random and very bad ice breakers like that. So what I'd usually do, is that I'd set up some kind of a scenario where the topic was introduced by either me, or I'd play my cards so that the person I planned on coming out to "reached the topic by himself/herself". Because like I said, I have an easy time telling people I'm bisexual if it's relevant. Just a personal weird thing I have, I guess. If I have to choose though, I'd rather come out, out of nowhere, than I would make a random phonecall to a stranger. You are right. I am the embodiment of laziness, and unvilling to do anything that could be interpreted as a nuisance.

Actually, I just remembered that the first time I came out as bisexual, was during a tandem bicycle ride. Funny stuff. I've also come out at my cabin, as well as in a bar setting. Also, one morning I just randomly on a whim decided that my sister should know, so I just went and told her, and that was really it. All my "outcomings" have been painless experiences, with little consequence, even of the "nuisance" kind.

And of course, I have nothing against people asking me questions. I'll gladly answer them truthfully. What I don't like, is when people make assumptions that misrepresent me, without any real reason. Luckily, that hasn't happened. But I've heard many stories that are not too pretty. Assupmtions could be of such nature as assuming that the fact that I'm bisexual also means I must be going through some kind of emotional turmoil because of it, as I'm sure many people of older generations would think. Which is why I really haven't come out to anyone not near my age. There is really no need :/

I want you to remember that these are all my subjective experiences. There are many people who feel differently, and are entitled to it. I also realize that coming out publicly can be good for cultural reasons, to bring minorities out of the shadows and such. Maybe I would do that if I lived in a less accepting place. But as I said, in my hometown of Vasa, in the Swedish speaking community, I don't think that there is really any relevant homo/biphobia at all. Only in certain smaller communities, and I don't really care much for them.

Speaking of assumptions, I also went to the army, as I mentioned earlier. My bisexuality wasn't in any way relevant to the experinece there. It was shit, and all the same amount of shit. The reason I mention this, is because a person told me he pities the gays in the army. "Because what if they get a boner in the shower". I mean, seriously?

Maybe that would be relevant if that was the high school locker room (not that I ever got a boner in the shower there either, depsite my crush showering too, for reasons I'm about to explain).

To begin with, the army isn't the sexiest place around. All people are pretty depressed, and some become mean. The showers in general, are pretty platonic places, where you wash yourself. Remember, it's not a U.S. prison, it's the Finnish army. Where homophobia exists to a certain extent, btw. That would be a good reason to "pity the gays".
Pretty much everyone has shaved heads, and you only really shower there because you have to. And you can often pick the time when you go there. So even if you were attracted to anyone there despite all factors making it difficult, you could just shower at a different time than said person. Worth to remember, is that being gay, doesn't mean that such a person is attracted to all men. If you showered with your grandmother, as a heterosexual, would you get a boner? Probably not.
Then you might say that if you showered with say 10 women, of your age, you couldn't help but to get a boner. That may or may not be true. But you also have to think that most people have showered with people of the same gender throughout their lives. In school, through sports, with friends, whatever. If you'd have done the same with random girls/women throughout your life, chances are you wouldn't get that boner.

But even if you or some random gay person did get such a boner, it wouldn't really matter. Now you weren't there, so you probably don't see why I'm going on about this. But this person said it with quite an amount of seriousness, right out of nowhere, like he would've thought about it for a while, and really figured that the gays in the army must live through hell. My problem with that, is that the thought aspires to define people through their sexuality, and not through who they are. There are gay men and straight women who've been through the army, and managed it just as well as any straight man. That said, I don't really care much for what people achieved during the army. I dislike that place from the depth of my heart, for all that it stands for.

Back to bisexuality. I feel like this random rant took a pretty weird direction, but that's all right. At least I managed to write something long, and probably confusing, which pretty much defines my entire blog.

Even though there's a lot more I could write, I think that's really it for now. If you know me in real life, I want to once again, make sure that you understand that my bisexuality is not a secret that has to be kept, it's just that I rarely tell people. So if you feel like gossiping with someone about it, please go ahead; you'd be doing my job for me. As I said, if I could flip a switch that would make everyone know, I'd do it, because it's simple and easy, and requires little effort on my part.

Also, as a final note, if any of my male acquaintances are reading this, you probably don't have to be any more scared than any woman should that I like you as more than a friend. It's very unlikely, given that I don't really like anyone to a large extent right now. And I also, don't really get attracted to my friends. Despite me saying that the difference doesn't have to be huge, it's there for me too. My friends are my friends, and usually, stay as friends in my mind as well. I know that that's something that shouldn't really need to be said, but I figured, why not?

So that brings to and end one of my weirder and longer, and most personal, as well as introspective posts. I'm sure it was actually a pretty boring read in general. But at least it was about something I felt I could easily write a long text about, which means that it belongs on this blog. I might write about sexualites in a broader and more cultural and scientific sense at some later point, as I for some mysterious reason happen to know a lot about the subject. I also didn't even manage to fill this post with a lot of the things I could've talked about, as school is about to start in 1,5 hours, and I need to take a shower and such.

Now, as always, it's time to plug my Newgrounds account. I currently have 299 fans over there. I had 300 for a while, but someone unfanned XD
Which is good, because I'll need to do something special, and write a short "thank you" update post when 300 is reached, which i suspect will be rather soon. I actually haven't really made too much cool music lately. I've worked on a horror project with another content creator, and written some short and silly tracks.

But Black Friday was 3 days ago, so I bought myself a good percussion library, and made a short 32 second loop in 1,5 hours. You'll probably easily be able to hear the difference in quality compared to my earlier tracks, even if I didn't even mix it properly!
Take a listen:




Pretty neat stuff, right? When I get more free time, I'll probably compose something bigger, making use of a small portion of the 80 freaking GB huge percussion library :D

I'll probably just write one more post this year, to complete a cycle of one post per month. The next year, I think I'll write whenever I want, not caring what month or day or week it is, instead.

I hope that you weren't super bored, if you managed to read your way through all this. After all, at pretty much exactly 6000 words according to an online word counter, it appears to be my longest post thus far. I mean, naturally, when I noticed I was at 5900 something, I decided to fill the rest of the spots up to reach such a number. 6666 would've been really nice too though (hopefully, editing will not affect this). The time sure flew by... If only I could write my school assignments as easily (though often, I guess I can).

Until next time, have a good one!!!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Hollow Hallows


Alright, heads up. This will probably be one of my shortest blogposts up to date (not the shortest one though). But in the end, that is quite fitting.

Why?

Well you see, usually when I claim that I will try to write something short, I end up writing thousands of words in one go. But this may well be one of the only times that I keep true to my word. And that is actually, pretty scary, at least coming from me. Which of course is fitting, as it is now Halloween.

I was actually supposed to write about a rather personal subject this month, but I ended up procrastinating and ignoring my school assignments until the very deadline, and managed to not work on any of the other stuff I had intended to do either. Good news: my school assignment is finished. Bad news: I'm too tired to write about that subject I mentioned. However, I will strive to write a good post about it sometime during the coming month instead.

As for now, I really only mean to write this as a short update kinda thingey. The subject for this time isn't that interesting, which is why the title includes the word "Hollow". The rest is probably self-explanatory... If I was writing a very deep post though, but with the same title, I'd probably be writing about ideas and values to which humans misguidedly place their trust. But such depressing talk is for another time. Let me just say that I really hope that Bernie Sanders will manage to become the president of the U.S.A. next year. That'd be... That'd be nice (perfect segue).

I'm still coughing, and I'm probably soon starting my second month in a row of doing so (I almost mistyped and wrote "dying so"... Weird). Yay! My studies at the University, despite my laziness, are still going pretty well. My fellow students are nice, fun people, and the teachers seem to know what they're talking about too.

But what can I have been doing this month when I've been so unproductive? I guess I have really just managed to waste (but of course, the time is not really wasted) my time online, with friends, playing the piano, and I've engaged in more skype conversations than ever before. I'm beginning to develop a pretty big list of contacts to whom I frequently talk to at this point. It's really nice, but also quite time consuming.
Other than that, I've started watching a few new animes. One that I really liked, is "Ansatsu Kyoushitsu", otherwise known as "Assassination Classroom". It has one of the weirdest plots currenly in existence; The anime revolves around a tentacle moster, teaching a class of students, how to kill him. I mean, without even watching the show, you know that that is a winning concept. I knew it from the start, and not even once, was I proven wrong.

Speaking of anime. My operation "Total Anime Transformation" is almost complete. I bought this new Gothically styled long coat from the interwubs (WUB WUB) because I liked the design. I was lucky enough to find one in the right size too. So I dyed my hair black, and costumed up, just in time for Halloween,









































Of course, I'll keep on wearing the getup after Halloween as well. I was actually positively surprised by how good the material the coat is made of is, and how well it keeps you warm even if it's cold outside. Turns out it has other uses than the purely visual one. Now that I have black hair again, it's probably time to change my profile picture, huh? I'll get to that in a moment, I guess...

Now other than Halloween, there's another holiday coming right up. That'd be, "All Saints' Day", or "All Hallows". It's a time when we commemorate those who have died on us. Instead of writing a traditional Halloween song, kinda like the goofy style from "A Nightmare Before Christmas", I let my short track of this year take on a more of a sad tone.







This is a piece that is meant to honor the dead. It's actually based around one of my old recordings that I found on my computer.

Anywho. As I promised, that is it for now.

I wish to see you return to this blog sometime next month, when hopefully, I'll have written about a slightly more interesting topic than my mundane life.

Until then, make sure to scare someone you know >:D