Halloween is Coming

20161030_220323.jpgWell, Monday is going to be Halloween. I decided to reuse my old costume from last year, which is a hoodie from the video game Assassin’s Creed with a blue shirt and jeans to keep the blue color similar to how the character actually dresses in the video game. I did not go and decorate my outfit to make it very similar because my supplies are limited, but I feel quite good about how it looks as it is. I am also going to add in the new hidden blade that I got just a few weeks ago. I am quite satisfied by how it turned out and am glad that I got permission from supervision to wear the gauntlet for my hidden blade to school as long as I detach the blade mechanism from it

Starting to Look Like Fall

20161030_174916.jpgI only made a post about a week or two ago predicting that summer does not seem to end even though it is fall. I now see that my prediction is wrong. I really got to know why nature does not just turn cold when we expect it to be fall. The days have been freezing recently and lots of rain has been falling these past few days. While the recent drizzles and downpours may just be those fast and random ones at the start of the sudden changes in climate, I am quite satisfied with the changes in fall this year. It has gotten so cold in the house that I have to switch out of shorts and a no-sleeve shirt to long pants and a sweater every night along with an even heavier blanket. Practicing outside for my school sport, tennis, is not as tormenting and stressful with the massive heat that builds up in the afternoon as well. I really am hoping that these cold days recently will continue going on through this season and that they are not just some random occurrence.

Birthday Wishes

birthday-messages I gotta thank the people that wished me a happy birthday today, October 30. It feels nice at least seeing the words pop up on Facebook whether it is on my page or by direct messages. To celebrate, I had a small private celebration at home with my parents by feasting with a barbecue meal in the backyard cooking large steaks and having some Korean barbecue as well. We then went out together to a small family reunion with some relatives to socialize and have some fun. As for gifts, I did not ask for very much this year. I only asked for money and got a satisfying $200 in total from my parents and relatives. Looking back since my last birthday, time has just moved really fast. I don’t know why, but ever since my last birthday, all of the moments of homework, holidays, vacations, etc. have gone by so fast that it’s hard for me to believe that it has already been a whole year. I hope that this year till my next birthday, I can make more memories and have more times where I can smile and have fun.

Questions

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Photo ©2008 by andrechinn [CC-BY-SA-2.0]

I just read a blog post by a fellow peer at school about his thoughts about the universe and our relation with chimps. That made me wonder about the first of everything.

I asking questions to myself like:

  • How did the first story appear?
  • How did the first organism on Earth appear?
  • Where in the sky was the first star of the universe?
  • What was the first planet like?
  • Why did the first Big Bang occur?
  • When will be the first case of teleportation occur?

Questions like these random ones just flowed through my head. I doubt that most of these questions can ever even have a definite answer. For all we know these questions may be answered tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, or just never answered. For some reason I feel like this is one of the reasons why we ask questions. Finding an answer gives clarity to one’s mind and moves one step forward in understanding the universe.

Intruder Alert?

16447003581_3dfb42b8b5_zPhoto ©2015 by yosuke watanabe

I really have to tell myself to stop watching scary videos before I go to bed. I literally get the worst case of paranoia at night. Last night, I watched a video by this Youtuber named Planet Dolan, who posts a variety of videos that focus on Top 10’s, trivia, and a variety of other topics. In the video I watched last night, Dolan read “true” stories that his fans share with him on his Reddit page. The stories involved the fans experiences home alone and having very ominous or sometimes even horrific events. The stories really got to my head. They are so horrific that I do not think it is appropriate to discuss on my blog. Regardless, those stories got through my head so much that I just could not sleep. I had the constant fear in the back of my head if I would have a terrifying experience like those fans.

It was 3 AM when I was calming down and about to close my eyes and go to sleep, I heard a car drive by and parked next to my house. I held my breath in fear and hesitantly looked out my window. I never saw anyone get out of the car, but even so after that, I began hearing noises coming from downstairs. I never stayed up this late before, and had no experience of knowing what sounds in the house were naturally made at night. I tried telling myself that I never heard any door opening or glass breaking, so there could not be any way that someone came into our house. I hid behind my bed and grabbed a long wooden rod from underneath, waiting for someone to come upstairs. I waited so long that I fell asleep and never reawoke until it was 6 AM this morning and the sun was up. I told myself that because it was daylight, there was no way an intruder would stay in my house, so I went back to bed and slept in the whole morning.

Finally… Rain

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Well, after weeks of heat, even though it literally is supposed to be Fall, we finally get our first case of pouring rain in California. It makes no sense to me why this is probably the hottest fall season we had in so many years. I mean sure it is sometimes hot, but that is when summer was about one to two weeks before. It has been nearly one and a half months since summer ended, and I am just annoyed about it up till this point. Today probably is just another case of rain that occurs for one day, and stops, but at least I am having hopes that the temperature in California improves soon and begins cooling down.

Mistakes and Replacements

hidden-bladeI’ve learned a lot of things in my life and doing A LOT of research before doing something I do not understand is one of them.

I have said this before, but Assassin’s Creed is probably one of my most favorite video game series. The trademark weapon of the games is the Hidden Blade. The Hidden Blade is a special switchblade that the assassins of the game use to perform stealthy attacks on their enemies. The blade is “hidden” on the forearm, attached to a special gauntlet. By tensing their forearm muscles and bending their hand back, the assassins eject the blade out of its sheathe.

I enjoy Assassin’s Creed so much that I was able to get my dad to order me a prop version of the Hidden Blade design that was from the most recent installment back in May as a reward for all my hard work studying for my AP Tests. I managed to get a massive discount for the prop by purchasing it for only $15 (original price $40). The blade is made out of a very dull plastic, but the entire gauntlet is moulded exactly like in the newest version of the game. I was very excited to try to make modifications to my new prop to make it work similar to the games. I was so enthusiastic that I attempted to modify it only three days after receiving it in the mail.

Currently, there is no way to make the prop Hidden Blades eject like in the game. It only takes a push of a button at the end of the blade to release the spring-lock mechanism that holds the blade in the sheathe. This is nothing like the video games, but even so, I did not give up hope, so I did some QUICK research on the Internet. There are various models of the Hidden Blade that are available, but they do not eject the blade similar to the games. There is a common modification for all of the models by drilling a tiny hole through the button and tying a long string that connects the hole with a ring that goes on the finger. Doing this makes it possible to bend the hand back, which yanks the string and pulls down the button, and having the illusion that just bending the hand ejects the blade.

This would not be the case for the model of the Hidden Blade that I purchased. I only started at the first step, which was drilling the hole through the button, and I realized that I made a big mistake. I drilled the hole through the button, but in the process I broke the spring-lock that prevented the blade from ejecting. There was a lock on the blade that prevents any unintentional misfires of the blade by accidentally pushing the button, but my project was ruined. Pushing the button would not eject the blade because it would just spring out on its own when the lock was off. I threw aside my Hidden Blade prop and was unable to look at it for months because I was so excited to buy it and I broke it after only a few days.

I was recently very lucky that my dad was nice enough to buy me a brand new copy of the Hidden Blade I broke, making me feel better about my mistake. After that incident, I promised myself that I would not modify this brand, new blade and not break it again.

Video Game + Doctors = ???

29597281914_e4ffe1aeac_zPhoto ©2016 by antoku hero [CC-by-2.0]

Yesterday, I talked about how Japan creates very influential television shows through their tokusatsu genre. I have enjoyed one of their most successful series, Kamen Rider (trans. Masked Rider), for nearly seven years. Kamen Rider releases a new season every year with a new hero inheriting the title. Each hero lives through a normal life, but when creatures that threaten the world appear, they protect the people that cannot fight back. Every Kamen Rider has their own special motifs like a wizard, ghost, time traveler, race car driver, and so many others that I cannot even list right now.

For this year they are combining the theme of doctors and gamers to create their newest and one of the most unique installments of the series, Kamen Rider Ex-Aid. So far, the plot follows a struggling, video game obsessed pediatrician, who works with the desire to put smiles on everyone’s faces. When Japan was inflicted with a special virus that was released from a video game world that invades a host, corrupts their bodies, and turns into a monster that works to continue spreading the virus and repeat the process. The pediatrician would receive a special device that transforms him into Ex-Aid, combining his love for video games and the desire to help patients in need. The power of the device allows him to cure the virus hosts by defeating their monstrous forms and return them to normal. This series is pretty new with only three episodes by the time I write this post, but just by watching the show, many would agree that it does have some promise.

Japanese Television

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Photo ©2007 by ironhide1990 [CC-by-2.0]

 

 

 

 

Japan is well-known for producing anime, which is their form of cartoons and animations. While anime is one of Japan’s most famous television genre in America, tokusatsu is one that is not that well-known. By definition, the tokusatsu genre is any live-action film or drama that usually involves plots with science-fiction and fantasies.

Many people do not know it, but the famous show Power Rangers in America actually originated from tokusatsu. Every single season of Power Rangers was adapted from seasons of another show in Japan called Super Sentai (trans. Super Squad). Super Sentai had origins dating back to the mid-1970s with it’s first season called Special Squadron Goranger. Eventually, after the 16th season of Super Sentai, Zyuranger, was completed in 1993, the American television company Saban would adapt it into the first iteration of Power Rangers. Power Rangers would take suit-fight scenes from the original Sentai show and have the American actors voice over the battles. The plots would usually follow along with the original material in order for the show to make some sense.

While I think it is amazing that Japan inspired America to create one of the most popular television shows. It disappoints me that many Americans are missing out on an amazing Japanese genre. Tokusatsu is just as influential in Japan as anime and it pains for me to see anyone that sees any tokusatsu show as just a rip-off and inspired from Power Rangers, when really Power Rangers was the inspired work.

The Little Jumper

grasshopperMy dad is really amazing. He finds the best creatures in our backyard.

Few years ago, Dad found a rabbit that snuck into the backyard and we kept it for a few days till we found the owner. Another time, he found a lizard that was creeping around our pool.

Two years ago, a pair of ducks repeatedly came into our backyard for a few days, and we wondered why they always came back. We then found out they laid eggs.

That summer, Dad caught an escaped bird that was sick and dying; unfortunately, we could not treat it and it died the next morning.

This year, Dad caught ourselves a grasshopper. He was watering the flowers in our backyard and then he saw the huge bug hopping and flying around. Dad used his hose to shoot water at it in order to prevent it from flying away. He would keep it in a tiny box and kept it in the kitchen for a day before Mom complained to release it. It was sad to see another creature go away, but I am excited to know what is coming next.