Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Well, it could have been worse.  I could have spent =more= than 2 hours thinking about the past instead of sleeping...


Yesterday was a really interesting day...I had a really hard time getting out of bed for some reason, and fell pretty soundly asleep during the morning train ride as well.  After getting off the train the city was oddly quiet in a way that made me wonder whether there was some holiday going on that I was totally unaware of.  I was feeling pretty cranky too, for some reason, imagining negative scenarios in my head, as one is prone to do when feeling grumpy.  Maybe I just have some sleep to catch up on.

Feedback has been coming in for our game, Raven Delivery Service, and people have been liking it!  I'll try to do a post-mortem post about it, as well as just advertise it via posting in general so we can get some more plays.

Aivi & surasshu are performing later this month at Fanime!  What a pleasant announcement to hear -- it actually makes me quite excited to go.  Steven Universe is also getting an official soundtrack release next month -- about time!  More importantly, I overheard that their next original artist album has a name, "valk hollow"?  That's actually more exciting than anything, as you know the main reason I'm a fan of aivisura is because of their debut album "The Black Box".  I am not-so-secretly hoping that once they release their next album I will be able to do a full remix album of their works again, as I did with "Love Everlasting".  That album was one of the most interesting and rewarding projects that I've undertaken as a musician and I'd love to try something like it again.

Big dance is also coming up this Friday!  Everyone should enter the dance contests, especially the ambi ones!
Looking back at my records, here were the themes for those years, to help people remember:
2011 was Firefly
2012 was Star Wars
2013 was Last Airbender
2014 was Game of Thrones
(2015 was a Little Big Dance)
(2016 was a Little Big Dance)
2017 is Back to the Future

(old-timers will remember some other ones, like pride and prejudance, etc)

Remember, Little Big Dances do NOT count as all-nighters! (since they didn't last all night, of course)  So this'll be my 7th Big Dance, but my 5th all-nighter.  Hopefully it'll be fun, despite the fact that I've been shying away from people interactions lately.  I was half-wondering whether I should take a page out of the past and try and compose a song real quick for big dance so that Richard could play it.  But I don't think that will happen, hehe.  Not ruling it out as a possibility though -- inspiration could strike at any moment!  It would actually be pretty cool to start a tradition of writing a new dance song every year for Big Dance specifically.  Maybe!

Speaking of dance music, next month I'll be going to a ballet performance set to my Celestial Melodies album!  Super interested to see how that will be, and never thought as I was writing it that my music would ever be used that way.  This is also a good point for me to try to design some (long overdue) business cards.  Hopefully I'll be able to use the All in a Day's Work 3 artwork, as that has become so iconic to me, but perhaps there are other options as well.  I'll have to decide what urls to put on there as well -- probably and for sure, but I should really clean up the landing page.  I guess if I make a more proper landing page for I can just feature that, DDRKirby(ISQ), my name, and possibly a contact email (?) and have the landing page direct you to everything else.  More work that needs to be done!  Looks like a lot of designery work is in my near future...

My birthday having passed now, I decided to go ahead and order a whole bunch of stuff online as I was in need/want of quite a lot of things here and there.  Yesterday those shipments finally started to get to me, so I now have an anova sous vide machine, a whetstone for sharpening my knives, a jaccard meat tenderizer, a mortar & pestle, new earbuds, a car vent mount for my phone, and a zojirushi vaccuum-sealed food container.  I also did a ton of grocery shopping last night, so I basically have a ton of new stuff to play around with and eat, whee!  I'm pretty excited about all of the items, haha.

The Risk of Rain devs are apparently working on RoR2, in 3D??? (using Unity, as of course is the trend for everyone and their mothers now)  That', I guess?  Of course, it's still a project early in development, so it's barely even worth thinking about when or whether they'll finish, but...I guess that's cool?  It's not the most -exciting- thing because I don't think 3D is really necessary, or even a boon to the gameplay, but maybe they are just trying to take a page out of Overwatch and such games.  It makes me a little sad for my pet project Zenith Fighter which I abandoned, which was aiming to be an arena-style game with platforming and RoR-style abilities, as well as a bunch of upgrades.

Speaking of pet projects, Rhythm Quest is on very shaky footing now as I haven't touched it in so long.  I don't think there's anything wrong with it, but the fact that I'm not regularly working on it is a red flag and I wonder whether it will actually become a thing, or whether it's not actually exciting anymore.  We'll see I guess, but for now I am going to remind myself that the reasonable thing to do is not to worry about it because I have other projects that are more pressing -- namely, finishing up my Sentience album, designing the business cards and redoing my landing page.

Speaking of my Sentience album -- it's getting close to being complete!  I'll probably aim to do one or two more songs and then package it all up for release.  Very exciting to be doing another original artist album that is getting a full physical CD release, especially since this one has such a strong theme and could be called my first ever "concept album", I guess.

I've been continuing to make my way through Hyper Light Drifter, which has still been great!  It's cool that, just like with Shovel Knight, I feel much more well-versed in the sort of "vernacular" of its level design, and am starting to really become familiar with where to look in order to find hidden areas and secrets.  I'm currently in the last of the four main "areas" (at least, that I know of!), though the game has made it very clear that even when I've beaten the boss there I will have to do quite a bit more searching and exploring.


I told someone recently that while many people find themselves needing to let go of their past before they can move forward, I find myself unable to move forward if I feel like I am letting something go.  I've been asked before just =why= the past is so important to me and there are many reasons -- I think loss is painful, letting go is painful, I'm strongly motivated by nostalgia and memory, I would much rather stick to what I know than embrace new experiences, I value lasting connections, I genuinely want to believe that things will last, etc. -- but in the end the answer basically is just that's the way that I am and I have learned that that is the way it has to be.  After many years of questioning myself and my feelings toward the past I came to a realization that even if it "slows me down", connecting with my past is ultimately something that I just have to do, out of necessity.  And if I try to avoid it and break free, I would only end up circling back again and not moving anywhere at all -- because "breaking free" is something I would never want in the first place.  And that is the reason that I can be so sure when I tell people I will always be here.  Always and forever.

...or at least, that's what I'd like to think.  After all, the girl of the stars also chose to leave her tower.  The story of the star and the girl is one that is incredibly important to me because represents a central conflict in life that I must always come to terms with.  The fact that "always" is not forever, and that despite my feelings and intentions, in the end I must accept that I cannot bring the past forward with me, and that I =must= by the nature of life move forward.  It pained me a great deal thinking about how the girl left the tower.  It still does, and always will.  But it's something that I need to understand too.  I think in the end, sinking deep into memory, holding traditions, treasuring artifacts, and "living in the past" are all ways of coping.

Who can say where the girl is now?  But no matter where she is, the tower and the star will always be an important part of her.  Maybe she will be able to come back to the tower someday.  Maybe she will be able to see the star again someday too.  But even if she does not, it will still be in her memory, as something precious and treasured.  In the same way, my friend Kiki is someone who is always on my mind when I think of the past.  My relationship with her, in many ways, represents my relationship with the past, and that is a reason why it has always held such significance to me.


I actually feel significantly better today.  Maybe all I needed was to feel like I am paying my respects to my memory...

(More to come later.)

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