Thinking of making a Kapital Kamakura Anorak clone next. I'd rather not spend $1K for something that's made of nyco. Also got some thread for sashiko embroidering. Very satisfied with my last sewing project(brown2, I wear it out all the time. Might not sell the Canon P, just wish it wasn't a 3lb hunk of brass hanging off my neck. The OM-2 continues to impress me even as my camera collection balloons.
Saw a twitter post sacralizing post-war Japan. Which is just odd. It's a bit like fondly looking back on the destitution of post-war Britain. Food rationing for 9 more years, grotty black streets, clouds of smog culling pensioners, if you fantasize about all this you're probably Scottish. Here in Japan there was an elderly woman on TV hoarding rooms of futons as a consequence of her inability to afford any as a child. Looking through 50's photobooks it was common to see children without clothing or shoes standing on dirt roads, towering khaki servicemen scattering sticks of gum like they were street pigeons.
The Taisho era is fondly viewed in Japan's collective memory, well past the barbarity of Edo and moved forward by the constant promise of technological progress like the steam engine. The aesthetics of colorful kimonos paired with boots have lived on, untainted by the civil wars that preceded it and the fascism and colonialism that followed it. I personally envy my parents who lived through the Bubble era, a hedonistic economic upheaval where forecasters were fearing a Japan-led global economy.
10/5/2020 Sark organized a fight club and got thai kicked in the head in front of his wife. Some shit and garbage weather lately,
Interview went well. Again it's not a company I'm particularly enthused about. TV, publishing, entertainment, there's a bunch on my mind. Got rejected by _a, waiting on _y.
10/10/2020 Sold the black OM-2n. 15 degrees, autumn is missing. Analysis of Russian performance in the second chechen war. Grandma's kitchen is really nice. I love the massive stainless sink drain that elegantly catches all the nasty bits, the pull-out fish grill, stove with automatic shutoff. Top of the line for 1991. The bottom-opening non-rotating microwave looks out of place.
seahorses look fucked if you think about it
10/12/2020 Bought the Inuko nendo
for essentially no money. Also got the Harajuku photobook for $7. I've come to terms with my purchases, I would've never had the opportunity to get my hands on any of this this stuff back in the US.
A youtuber i used to watch back in 2010 came back after a 2 year-hiatus. A lot has happened since them, cascading personal issues, a turn to minimalism and a new emphasis on financial security. He seemed to be trying to take things less seriously, rejecting the idyllic american life trajectory and the collection of stressors that comes with youtubing as a job. Good timing.
That feeling again. Been defaulting back to maladaptive patterns of behavior. Easy bits of dopamine here and there. Further evidence that this mindset that you discover while you're not feeling well carries over and embeds itself in the tail end of your emotional barometer. It comes with the realization that I've never really been able to build a better environment for myself. My personal myth is one of a tolerable existence, propped up by trinkets eye-catching enough to forget the monotony of it all. And like a skink tail, my interests keeping me afloat are the first to go. Even under "normal" stretches of life it's not terribly cathartic living under the confines of a bucket list.
I'm sure it's ok to be a young 20-something fresh out of college with uncertainties but I'm an adult, there's plenty of baggage at my feet. The unspoken pressures of societal expectations, the burgeoning financial cost of mindlessly existing. Staying here while rained in is a perfect demonstration for this, and is probably the best explanation to why these childhood scenes don't elicit reassurance anymore. I feel like this early twenties period can only be defined by retrospective regret over inaction or appreciation for taking risks. I don't know where my bulletpoints lie within this whole thing or even whether this is a life trajectory I want to throw my weight under. I don't know what I want.
10/13/2020 Great weather, off for a walk. Not much to photograph admittedly. Wanting a macro or telezoom lens for the kind of shots I'm getting. Photographed an orb weaver spider and got eaten by mosquitos while trying to find the minimum focus distance, As always I love Saitama Prefecture. I love how you can only hear sparrows and crickets, I love the suburb layouts that make no sense, the half-assed farms of greens, the mismatched flowers that line every dirt road.
The gorgeous indonesian shawl that's been hanging upstairs for 15 years is now mine. Doesn't look like Ikat or Batik, no idea what it is.
10/14/2020 Health scare, off to the hospital.
10/21/2020 I struggled through a personality exam in Japanese, impenetrable phrases impeding my progress along the way. One of the survey's curiosities was how strategic you were. Do you plan your actions or do you wing it? Can you create and follow a daily schedule? It got me thinking. In the stuff that matters i.e. life, school, jobs, it's been ragtag, mainly because of my inability to forsee what lies ahead. There's a few crossroads moments in the last 5 years that I think about, I'm still left wondering what my life would look like now if I had taken the alternate route, what I'd lose and gain from doing so, all within the limitations of lofty fantasy. Was I right to enroll in this Uni? Would I have embraced study abroad so thoroughly if I had? Would a different part-time job have enriched my time during college? Should I have pursued that connection a little more? Should I have said something different? There's few things you can predict in scenarios like this, and my early life was littered with decisions like this. Relinquish any notion with agency and see where it takes you, that's largely what's occupied my thinking.
But in the matters that I'm supposed to enjoy, blocks of time in my life that I have direct agency over, I've been a bit more organized. Hobby to-do lists, wishlists, show backlogs, it's been a continuous stream of desires. I look back occasionally on the notes I left during high school and it's always a strange sensation. The bulleted tasks are laughably small-scale, but I was at a point where tracking those sprinkings of desire was a pressing priority. "Organize files" and "watch X" kept me together for those years, within the confines of a grey suburban backdrop. Some bulletpoints were more distant fantasies pulling me along, stuff like "build a PC" or "__" And I still do this, drafting up shopping lists of impossibly expensive photobooks and rags of linen.
But life isn't a hobby, it's not meant to be structured like an idealistic checklist. And it's taken me 7 or so years to realize that within this flurry of an employment cycle. I don't have an idealized full-time job or lifestyle in mind, and that contradicts so harshly on a fundamental level with these 6000-character applications at probably what is the most important time in my life. I'm not even sure what kind of lifestyle I fantasized about when I still lived in that American suburbia bubble. I'm no longer sure where the memories and idealism of grandma's house belong to. And I'm not sure laundry lists are doing me any good either, hobbies are easily discarded when you're at a bad place. I have to change how I think about and approach daily life in both halves of life, two blocks that I've kept firmly partitioned since I became a sentient organism.
I'm not good at this whole "self awareness" thing