Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of people wanting to simplify and organize their lives by going through their items, getting rid of the stuff they don’t need and re-organizing everything. While I could do with some re-organizing and some light decluttering, I could never be a minimalist. I like being surrounded by stuff. Of course, I can live in a space with no furniture or personal items if I had to but my life is not an episode of Burn Notice.
Over the years, I have regretted buying a countless number of things for one reason or another: the item broke shortly after I bought it, I lost interest in the item, etc. I’ve been trying to be more careful about what I buy. I’ve been happier with my purchases for the most part. There are, however, some purchases that I have been wanting to do for a while now, but I keep delaying them, mostly because of the cost, the fear of not liking what I’m liking and the strong possibility of it falling apart in my hands.
New Digital Camera
I have an old Canon digital camera several years ago that is fine, but the quality of the photos is so bad that I have to edit them in order for them to be decent.
I’ve been hesitating to buy a new camera though because I don’t take pictures often, and I’m honestly afraid that I’d get poor quality pictures anyway.
A Second Desk
I have a desk for my laptop and small tasks but for things that require more space, like craft projects, it’s not functional. I’ve been thinking of getting a second desk so not only do I have the space to do art projects and other things, I can just leave stuff on it without the need to put everything back right away. Perhaps some people might think this would just add to the clutter but, honestly, it would be nice just to leave a project there so I can come back to it when I have the time.
A Portable DVD Player
I can play DVDs on my laptop, but I’m often using my laptop so I can’t multi-task. A portable DVD player would allow me to do both. I did have one, but it broke mysteriously one day, so I’m hesitant to buy one.
If I had to make one purchase right now, I would lean toward the portable DVD player. It’s the cheapest of the three, and it would help me watch more TV, which is one of my goals. I know. I know. It’s sad that I had to make it a goal to watch more TV. Stop mocking me. D=
I have to admit that I am someone who finds nostalgic in pretty much everything, even the things that I didn’t experience and enjoy. Mixed tapes being just one example. I grew up in the 90s and early 2000s and by then, cassettes were pretty much obsolete. The only time I’ve ever used cassettes was when I had to record something for a school project in the fifth grade. Mixed tapes weren’t really a thing when I was growing up, but I wasn’t really into music back then, so I wouldn’t really know. Despite this, I can’t help but to feel nostalgic whenever mixed tapes or cassettes is brought up. I guess I’m fond of anything that was once popular but is obsolete now. I wonder how many years if will take for me to be nostalgic for Pokemon Go. Oh, that’s right. Never.
There are a number of things that still exist that I’ve missed, but I’m not sure if I would experience them again. And if I did, if it would feel the same as it did before. Two of these, of course, are specific to New York City, where I call my home, despite being there for the least amount of time. I have spent 20 years now in Florida, but I’ve never considered myself a Floridian. I do not enjoy feeling like I’m melting 10 months out of the year.
Sigh. The joys of living in Florida. Let me tell you, I will not miss Florida. Well, maybe in a snowstorm.
Although writing letters still exist in this world full of technological advances, it’s been slowly dying out in the past 20 years, like journalism and blogging and having a conversation with someone without at least one of you glued to the screen of your phone like a zombie. But, on the other hand, phone zombies are very on trend right now.
Although I briefly had a penpal from Italy in the fourth grade.it really didn’t amount to anything and I didn’t get interested in having penpals until I was well into my 20s. It was a combination of nostalgia and watching YouTube videos of people receiving penpal packages. I wanted to find a penpal who was close to my age, but it was difficult. I ended up finding a penpal who was a bit younger than me, but I already knew her, so that helped. It was lovely exchanging letters and packages with her, but I just did not feel comfortable with it, and I felt I was forcing myself to write the letters. I wanted it to feel natural but instead, it felt like I was doing a 25 page essay on the American Revolution.
When I was in New York, my family and I would go to to Chinatown every weekend. It was a family tradition. Of We didn’t really do anything special. My parents won errands while us kids just went to various stores and stood around looking at stuff. Some people might say that it was no different than grocery shopping. But you just don’t get the same feeling of nostalgia shopping at Wal-Mart.
There is a part of Orlando where there is a cluster of Asian stores that somewhat resembles a vague idea of what a Chinatown is. It’s just not the same. It’s not as lively and there isn’t as many places to go to. But then again, I’m comparing apples to oranges. It’s just that Orlando is a really sad orange.
OK, so for those of you who take the Subway, or the equivalent, on a regular basis, you may think I’m crazy for being nostalgic for public transportation. Well, keep in mind that I moved out of New York when I was a child. As a result, I’m quite disappointed that I didn’t grow taking the subway as a teenager and young adult. Actually, I remember when I was like ten, I was on the bus with my mother, and I was jealous of seeing teenagers taking the bus by themselves. And this was on a BUS. A bus. I guess I’m more nostalgia for experiences I missed in New York because my parents were like, “Yeah, we want to slowly die from the humidity and THE SUN. Off to Florida we go. Clearly, my nostalgia here has been romanticized a bit, but I still miss the Subway.
Who’s not nostalgic for the morning rush and being in a subway car full of 100+ angry, cranky New Yorkers who want to secretly kill you? :p
It’s been very quiet here at Nostalgicism. There are cobwebs on the walls. The crickets are chirping. The relentless mobs of angry Asian moms have discovered Green Tea Frappuccinos and are now taking their bamboo torches to Starbucks. If you live in an area with a large Asian population and you like getting Green Tea Frappuccinos, I strongly suggest that you make your own if you want to avoid getting tofu thrown at you by angry Asian ladies.
And, yes, I chose a video uploaded by an Asian woman because I like supporting Asian ladies. Go Asian ladies. :p
Given the nature of my blog, I have posted about a wide variety of different subjects. TV. Books. Music. Movies. Technology. It varies. I don’t really talk about my personal life outside of pop culture that often, and that’s fine by me. Despite this, I do have a lot of updates that are a bit on the personal side. Brace yourself.
I have started my next project
I’ve been wanting to start a new project, but was having trouble figuring out what exactly. I finally decided to build a Lego replica of the Big Bang Theory apartment. I’m making a little bit of progress. At this point, I have not used the official Big Bang Theory apartment set, but I will eventually use it for props. I’ve just been using parts from my collection and bought various parts online and pretty much building my own version of it.
I am eventually going to start writing again, but I’m having trouble figuring out how to go about it. Like with everything, it’ll happen…eventually.
I still don’t have a Smartphone, and I have no regrets.
I’ve talked about not having a phone right from the very beginning. Hardly anyone calls me, and I literally use my phone, at most, twice a day, and that’s only to call someone for a specific reason. I wasn’t lying in my bio when I said I still think I’m in the year 2004.
They now make Dark Chocolate Twix.
Roughly 12 years ago, I discovered Dark Chocolate Twix at a college bookstore. At the time, it was limited edition, and shortly after, it disappeared.
Now, in a world where even Tropical Sour Patch Kids exist, and every brand is expanding their flavor, Dark chocolate Twix is now available widely.
Surprise, I still don’t keep up with the news.
For a while, I wanted to keep up with the news because I did not enjoy feeling like I was out of the loop on current events. Needless to say, I failed.
Now, I haven’t been trying to keep up with the news, but I do make more of an effort to read the headlines on Yahoo. And it helps that I listen to podcasts, so I can at least gets news from people who are more imformed than I am.
I’ve officially given up on Twitter
Besides a FaceBook account I barely use, I don’t use social media but I wanted to start socializing and networking and thought Twitter was a good place to start. Ultimately, I realized Twitter wasn’t really my thing and quickly gave up.
I’m still maintaining my on-again off-again relationship with television
I sometimes find it silly that one of my main goals right now is to watch more TV. I do think that being a massive TV fan that I am, I’m just not watching as much as I used to. Right now, I’m in a TV slump right now, and I’ve been watching a little TV here and there, but I haven’t been committing to anything right now.
Once again, I’m trying the BookRiot Read Harder Challenge, but my own variation of it, and I have since finished one book. And, yes, I know it’s the end of June. But, hey, it’s progress, and I have since been reading on a semi-regular basis. At this pace, I might end up finishing another book in just eight months. Hooray.
I wish I could say that I’m a very focused individual. I tend to jump around from one thing to another. On this blog alone, I have talked about trying to catch up on the news, trying to watch more TV, trying to read more often and, oh, how I have like 50 different collections. I am truly all over the place, and I am often jealous of people who are able to focus on one thing.
And, surprise, I collect Legos, but seldomly build with them, want to read books but struggle with finding the time and focus and have the desire to be artistic but lack the skills and confidence to not want to scream every time I try to draw a stick figure.
I’ve made a little progress with reading. I finished a book a few months ago, so at least I can say I read a book this year. I have also been working on watching more TV, but nothing really consistent so far. It is a work in progress though. I have been thinking about starting a project of some sort. A project that has an end to it, as opposed to “Oh, just read more often.” I want to work on something over time and be finished at some point. As always with me, there was a long list of things I wanted to do. Miraculously, I narrowed it down to three projects that are feasible for me to do over time with the eventuality that it will be finished in the next 25 years.
Add Content on Nostalgicism
When I started web designing over 5 years ago, I started out with personal Web sites that had a lot of content and pretty much no blog. Now, it is the reverse. I have a blog with no content. Well, except for a slightly sarcastic bio page with a photo that is seven years old. I’ve been wanting to add content to Nostalgicism, but I’ve never really had a firm idea of what I wanted. I was thinking maybe a progress page for my book reading and television watching, but I don’t know if either warrants its own separate page when I can just blog about either. But, then again, it would be more accessible if they had their own pages. I don’t see anyone thinking, “Huh, I wonder if Kenny finished the fourth season of The Wire yet?” But I do worry just having a standard blog is not enough.
Write More Short Stories
Despite having a pretty thin writing portfolio and not being a professional writer of any sort, I have always considered myself a writer. In the past year, the only writing I’ve really done has been for Nostalgicism. Well, I am working on an novel outline that’s been a work in progress…for 7 years. Sigh.
A few years ago, I did write a bunch of short stories with the intention of working on the novel or a bigger writing project. Surprise, nothing ended up happening. All I have are several short stories that I am unsatisfied with. Most of the short stories came from exercises from a book of writing prompts. Here’s a quick sample. The original writing prompt was to write a story about two extremely close people consisting mostly of dialogue. I naturally chose two best friends of the opposite gender who have absolutely no possibility of hooking up, ever. I am writing a short story here, not an episode of Grey’s Anatomy.
I stare at my cards. I have a two of hearts and seven of spades. Out on the table is a two of spades, five of diamonds, jack of spades, queen of diamonds and ace of clubs. All I have is a lousy pair of twos. I have no idea what my next move is. Theresa glances at me as if she wants to kill me. I glance at her back as if I would rather stab myself in the leg than to continue this poker game.
“ I call,” I finally say while dropping the chips into the pile.
“Great, and I want to know more about Rachel.”
“I know. I know. It’s none of my business, but you know it’s my duty as your…”
“…best friend to know everything. You will never let me forget that. Will you?”
I lay my cards on the table solemnly, knowing Theresa will win. I don’t really care.
“No, I won’t, and I have two pairs,” She says while she lays her cards, a queen of spades and an ace of hearts, on the table. She then reaches her arms out to get the chips from the center of the table and puts them in her pile.
“You win. Now let’s stop playing.”
“No, we’re not done yet with this game, or with talking about the girl you’re currently in love with,”
I, of course, cringed while quickly scanning the story and immediately edited it. And I didn’t even read more than what I posted. Sigh. Now I know why I stopped writing. And. God. The poker references. Someone who is more familiar with Ppker than I am is shaking their head at me in disappointment.
Build a Replica of the Big Bang Theory Apartment Out of Legos
Yes, it’s very specific. :p
I have been obsessed with Legos recently, despite having only built two fairly simple sets and have done nothing custom on my own before. I have the Big Bang Theory living room set, and I haven’t really been inspired to built it. Well, after seeing a video of someone modifying the set to make it larger to include the kitchen, I’ve been racking up ideas in my head for a larger, more accurate replica, using the set as a base of course.
I don’t know if I’m ready for it though. I only start buying lego pieces outside of sets because I wanted a miniature table, I’ve been unsatisfied with dollhouse tables. I know what you’re thinking. I’m a man in his early 30s, and I want a miniature table. Ugh. I like miniature tables. Sue me.
If anyone has any opinions of what I should pursue next, do let me know. I need help. x.x.
As a person who’s been web designing since the early 2000s, I’ve always been familiar with the concept of personal sites and blogs. Although I blogged a little bit here and there back then, the sites I had were more personal sites than blogs. I focused more on having content. Not so much now, heh.
In the mid 2000s, I stopped having Web sites. It was a combination of lack of interest and the change of landscape of the Internet at the time. A lot of the people I knew back then stopped updating their sites regularly, and a lot of the forums I was involved in closed down or had a lack of activity. Years after, I tried going back to having a Web site, but it didn’t work out for more than a year a time. Yes, I was one of those people. And, yes, I can hear your passive aggressive traditionally-minded Asian mother judging me.
Although I was trying to get back into Web design again, the reason why I started Nostalgicism was to have an outlet for writing. I needed a platform to write on a regular basis, and a blog was my best option. I knew I was taking a big risk due to my previouss failed attempts on starting a Web site. Although I tried blogging a few times, I wasn’t really into it because I honestly didn’t have anything to blog about. Back then, all of the blogs I was familiar with were personal blogs of people sharing their daily lives. This was pretty much my downfall when I first tried blogging. I don’t have a problem with sharing things about my personal life. I just don’t think people will care because I never have anything going in my life. There’s just really nothing to share when you’re watching Scorpion and eating pizza. This is why Nostalgicism is a pop culture blog with small pieces of my life thrown in here and there. I’ve found I’m best in small doses anyway.
It is no secret that, over the years, blogging has been slowly dying. There are just too many options for people to share their thoughts and connect with people. There was actually a time where people actually had conversations on tag boards. Yes. Tag boards. God. I feel old.
Over the years, vlogging has been more popular. Me, personally, I wouldn’t feel comfortable vlogging because I’d be too worried about whether or not I’m allowed to film in certain places. I really don’t want a McDonald’s employee to tell me, “Sir, you can’t film in here.” Heck, I’d be self-conscious just taking a photo, and that’s a lot more discreet. That is why I like blogging. It’s a private endeavor, and I can do it in the comfort of my own home. Now, it is possible to vlog in one’s home but, unless you have a specific theme or focus, I don’t think daily vlogs of you eating breaking and watching TV would be the most entertaining.
Most of the vlogs I’m familiar with are mostly couples in their 30s with young children. Honestly, they all blur into one super vlog, and I’m like when does one vlog end and another begin? I personally like vlogs that are not the norm, like ones that focus on a specific job outside of filming/making videos, a specific disease or disorder, etc. Now, with these types of topics, I prefer watching vlogs than reading blogs. I would rather watch a 15 minute video of the daily routine of a person with a health condition as opoosed to reading a 1,500 word essay on it. This isn’t high school, and I’m not a teacher grading you.
I, however, do prefer blogs overall. I’ve always been familiar with them. I prefer coding Web sites over editing videos. And, oh yeah, I have a blog, so blogs win. :p
Call me odd, but I’ve always been fascinated by people born in the same year as me. Perhaps it’s because of the simple reason that I have something in common with another person, but I don’t get the same feeling with anything else. When I see another Asian, I don’t go, “Hmm. I feel connected to that person on an emotional level,” like I do with someone else born in 1986. I guess it’s just the novelty of being born in the same year as someone. We’ve been more or less exposed to the same things. Pop Culture. Current Events. The rise and fall of Shia Lebouf, Lindsay Lohan and Amanda Bynes. OK, maybe I was the only person who followed that.
I have been wanting to start a series for a while, but like with many, many things, I had put it to one side with the intention of eventually doing something within the next 15 years. Well, here it is. I know that all of you are disappointed that I’m not doing Fashion Fridays but I don’t think any of you would be interested in seeing photo after photo of me wearing a t-shirt, shorts and flip flops.
I often talk about how much society has changed due to the technological advances. Even just 10 years ago, we were still using Myspace, and YouTube was just starting out. Now, I can’t imagine not having YouTube. I don’t know how I survived all those years on the Internet without having one Web site to view videos and having to go from site to site. For my first installment, I will be talking about people who make a living uploading videos on YouTube. I attempted to find three people born in 1986 who write obituaries, but I gave up after seven years of searching.
Ana Kasparian (News/Politics)
I know many of you are going to be like. “Um, who the hell is this person? I’ve never heard of her. She must make sewing videos or something.” Well, no, but I am sure there are many, many well-loved sewing ladies on YouTube.
Ana Kasparian is one of the hosts of the news show The Young Turks. I don’t often watch the show because it’s a tad, too, um, intense for me. I’ve mentioned in the past, how I was trying to keep up with the news. Well, I failed horribly. Although, to my credit, I have finally come up with a system that has worked for me for a while. I just casually browse the Yahoo homepage for a few minutes at a time until something catches my eye. Ana, I know. You’re shaking your head at me and silently judging me, and I’m OK with that.
As I was trying to find a video with Ana, I knew I wanted something light-hearted and recent. Well, I stumbled across this from almost nine years ago, and I thought, “Yeah. I’m going to use this.” Oh well. One out of two isn’t bad.
Michael Stevens (Science/Tech)
Michael Stevens is the creator of VSauce, which focuses on science and technology. It started out as a video game channel but when he uploaded science videos, people were like, “Wow, this science video is great but what is up with all of these Call of Duty videos?”, so it morphed into a science channel. He mostly focuses on answering scientific questions we all wonder about. Why is yawning contagious? Why are things creepy? Why do Asian men cry ten times more than White men? OK, maybe not that last one, but I’m sure it’s something you want to know.
Jenna Marbles (Comedy)
OK. This is the person almost everyone is going to know. She’s blond. She’s loud. And she doesn’t care about what you think of her. She’s pretty much the opposite of me.
Her content has varied over the years. They range from her just talking to having conversations with copies of herself to reacting to videos to her doing a specific task. Guess which one I like the most?
Yes. If you want my attention, attach balloons to your dog. Actually, no. Use your ferret. That will get you more views.
Not surprisingly, when there’s a fad or cultural phenomenon, I often don’t participate. There are some that I like. Harlem Shake videos are cute. 13 Reasons Why is a good show. Podcasts are a constant necessity for me to live and function as a normal human being. However, there are just some things that I don’t understand, like this music video.
OK, so I didn’t even know what this was until, well, five seconds ago. I remember it was plastered all over YouTube by annoying people who barely knew what they were doing. When I saw a sea of “KONY2012” flooding YouTube, I honestly thought, “Wow, I don’t know who this KONY person is, but they must be a good rapper for all of these kids to be obsessed with him.” Yeah, I know. I can feel you eating a grilled cheese sandwich and silently laughing at me while sipping your ginger ale.
As I do not have a Smart phone, so I can’t use aps nor have I substituted texting for basic human interaction. So naturally, when almost everyone in the entire world was obsessed with catching Pokémon, I was just being my usual self and silently judging everyone while I stared at blank space doing nothing and waiting for the fad to pass. A second later, everyone just stopped playing. I guess they wanted to go back to texting full time.
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
I know this was for a wonderful cause, but I personally did not see the entertainment or educational value of throwing ice water all over your body. It was supposed to create awareness and raise money from charity. I would rather do it the old fashioned way and just read a pamphlet and send a check. If I wanted to do something fun, I would dive into a pool of chocolate pudding.
I don’t know why this video exists, but I’m glad it does.
You know society is digitally progressing at a rapid rate when you’re starting to be nostalgic over YouTube videos. No, I’m not talking about perky 19-year-olds talking about their makeup routines. I’m too beautiful for makeup. I am talking about BuzzFeed and similar channels where they take groups of people and have them do some sort of task. It ranges from eating Indian food to watching Bridezillas. It can go to the extreme like, I don’t know, watching porn with porn stars. No, I’m not going to link to that video. Instead, here’s a very touching Vienna Teng song. Enjoy, and you’re welcome.
Now, naturally, while browsing through the countless sea of videos from what I’m going to call shameless content mills, I went with the very familiar theme of nostalgia. The first two are obvious. PSAs remind me of my childhood and, well, I’m Asian. The last one, eh. I knew I wanted to link to a BuzzFeed video, but I wasn’t naturally drawn to any of them. In a quick panic, I chose the German food taste test one because I thought it was funny, and I took a German class in college five years ago. Eh, it counts.
Over the past decade, we have seen the Internet change dramatically. There’s the obvious: We are more dependent on the Internet, and we’re on our phones a lot. I am, of course, not on my phone that much because I do not have a Smartphone. I actually have an anti-Smartphone, otherwise known as a disposable cell phone that I can lose and easily replace with little worry and much ease. Hey, look at me. I’m special.
I can barely remember what the Internet was like ten years ago. All I know is that it was nothing like it is today. It’s interesting because we were in a transitional period at the time. Back in 2007, we were still using Myspace and AOL Instant Messenger. A few years later, FaceBook, Twitter, YouTube and, oh yeah, Smart Phones took over. Several years later, well, they’ve dominated the world. Soon enough, we will just stop interacting with each other, lock ourselves in enclosed spaces, then die alone from natural causes. Sounds lovely.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about Web sites that were popular ten plus years ago that have disappeared into the woodwork. Why did they not stand the test of time? Do people still use them? What will happen to them later on? I don’t know what will happen to these Web sites in the future. Chances are likely that they will suffer the same fate of Michelle Branch.
When starting a blog, I’ve always advocated doing it on your own as opposed to using a Web site like Blogger or WordPress. I, of course, know that not everyone can commit to a domain name and a hosting package, but I recommend it if it’s possible for you.. The problem with Blogger and WordPress is that it gives you limited options for customization, and it gives you less control when it comes to coding and other things.
Blogger has fallen to the wayside in favor for other Websites and installing blog systems on their domains. I, myself, have never used Blogger. I’ve always had my own domains. I remember the one time I tried to start a blog on blogger, I had extreme difficulty. I don’t remember what happened. All I know is I was frustrated and angry. If I’m going to be angry and frustrated either way, I’d rather just do it on my own.
Flickr was never really a Web site that was extremely popular because it geared toward professional and hobby photographers. I feel like, over the years, it’s gotten less and less popular. I browse through photos for both blog posts and inspiration. It just reminds me that a lot has happened, a lot is going to happen and a lot is happening right now at this moment. It’s a reminder that I’m human. And, no, I do not get the same feeling from Instagram. Flickr is more “Look at this picture of a squirrel looking at a rainbow I took in the pouring rain on an empty stomach. Aren’t I awesome?” Instagram is more like “Look at my dog. He’s cute.”
Of the three here, Pandora was really the only Web site I used on a regular basis. I just started losing interest and got my music from other places, mostly YouTube. I do use Pandora from time to time, usually if I want to find artists or songs similar to ones that I’m already familiar with, or to listen to a genre station. One can only listen to Michelle Branch for so long. It is a good way to find songs you’ve never heard of before.
OK. You can send in the mob of angry Asians with bamboo torches now.
I often talk about how I’m not as technologically savvy as most people are. This, of course, extends to social media. For the longest time, I only had a FaceBook account that I used mostly for games. Now, it just collects dust as if it’s George Bush autobiography.
A year ago, around the same time I started Nostalgicism, I decided it was finally time to make a Twitter account. Personally, I have no need for Twitter. I do feel I need to socialize and network more than I am and, let’s be honest, I’m not doing all that much in terms of socializing and networking, heh.
Using Twitter may seem simple to most but for me, it’s completely overwhelming. The problem isn’t only figuring out what to say. It’s also finding people to follow and trying to get people to follow you while at the same time avoiding telling them outright to actually follow you. It’s tricky business, and why I ended up abandoning my account for several months.
Recently, I’ve started using Twitter again, and unsurprisingly immediately started to get overwhelmed. A series of frivolous questions came flowing into my mind. How do I get more followers? How do I find more people to follow? How do I decide who to follow? What do I want to achieve on Twitter? And most importantly, how do I force myself to use Twitter on a regular basis and not want to both cry and die at the same time?
The answers to these questions are unknown at the moment. The plan right now is to take things slowly and at least spend a little bit of time on Twitter on a regular basis. Sigh. I wish I were living in 2004 right now.