March 26, 2009

I've got my glasses on

I think life is making me stoical. Last year this might have crushed me, might have made me cry, might have made me angsty. Right now, a couple of days after the storm, I feel... nothing.

Sometimes feelings are like a whirlwind of dust spinning around you, clouding your mind. When that happens, it's better to wait for the wind to die down and the dust to settle, rather than act in the heat of the moment and later regret it.

It's quite fascinating how, little by little, if you let time pass -even just a few hours- you start seeing things in their true dimension. I mean that you realize that something that seemed a mountain is just a grain of sand, that sometimes it's not worth the while feeling hurt or angry or worried about something.

This time hurt came first. On Wednesday morning I woke up in the Middle Ages and found myself being hauled to the public square, where an accusing finger pointed at me and an angry voice shouted: "Witch! We must burn her at the stake!". ... No, wait, it wasn't like that really, though in a way that's what it felt like. Others may need a little drama in their life -you know, Con onor muore, Morte di Butterfly and all that-, but drama is not my thing at all. I'm more into satirical comedy. Word-duelling is a lot more fun... but it must be done in style.

Thing is that, yes, in a figurative sense it was the enactment of a drama, and there were accusations, and the place was very public indeed. It's understandable of course, because to stage a drama you need an audience, don't you agree? Who cares if it's a private matter? We're in the Age of Reality Shows, in which all private matters become public. Also, naturally, the most sublime monologue would be pointless without an audience.

The Prima Donna clenched the hearts of the breathless audience with her singing barking more likely. I was rather shocked that the lyrics were about me, harsh and blunt words that made me feel as if my chest had turned into a bleak moor upon which a chilly wind was blowing. I knew some people in the audience, and I could sense them giving me confused looks, but the shock kept me nailed to the seat. My ears were ringing when the curtain fell, and some people still looked confused, but others clapped and cheered "stay strong!" -to the Prima Donna, not me-, and there was even an encore though we had been assured there wouldn't be any. Divas are like that. They make their audience suffer a little but can't deny them anything. So divine. Puccini would be have been proud.

If I ever happen to act like a diva, by the way, please slap me and remind me who I am: just a fan like any other. Bloggers are not fandom gurus, never worship them; they're just people who spend part of their free time doing something they like doing: writing. And no need to thank us for anything. Blogs are aimed to be read, so you, the readers are the ones that give meaning to what we bloggers do. Therefore, it's us who should be thanking you for being there.

Back to the drama of the century... The person sitting next to me was an old acquaintance. When I mentioned the lyrics and pointed out that I was actually the one that had been wronged, she didn't want to make any comments, would rather remain neutral, you know. Funnily enough though, when I was heading towards the exit I heard her praising the Prima Donna: "Stay strong!".

Some people cry or shout when somebody hurts them. I, however, am the type that clenches their fists, holds back the tears, and goes silent. I may seem okay on the outside, I may not make dramatic posts, but that doesn't mean things don't hurt me.

My acquaintance was still talking to the Prima Donna, and my surprise grew when I heard her comment on the lyrics with something that went like "it's okay; what happens happens". I frowned and then blinked repeatedly in bewilderment. What was that supposed to mean? "What happens, happens"?! So somebody punches you, and you tell a friend: "That guy punched me just now, can you believe it?", and all they do is shrug and reply: "Well, what happens happens". Hmmm... Perhaps I should adopt it as my motto now I'm going stoical. "What happens happens"; nice phrase.

I couldn't help overhearing somebody else's words as well. I'd never seen that person before, but they patted the Prima Donna's shoulder and said they understood what she was going through and oh, it was all so terrible, they were so sorry... I stood where I was, feeling like a squashed tomato, shaking inside, and wondered if that person had even considered that there are always two sides to a story and they had only heard one. Apparently not.

Those things I heard turned the hurt into sadness and disbelief. This is fandom and it's something trivial, but it's a reflection of the world out there. That's the way the world goes, with people who judge having heard just one side of the story, and other people who know both sides, and know the truth, and know what is right and what is wrong, but just don't care because it doesn't affect them.

However, there were also friends who were there, at the "theatre", who called to ask if I was okay, and those are the people that count for me. I knew the truth, knew there was no reason whatsoever for which I deserved to be verbally abused like that in public for something that concerned no one, and also... what the hell, it was just fandom! Those thoughts blew away the clouds of sadness and disbelief and let the sun through. I hadn't hurt anyone, I had done nothing wrong, all the ruckus would be forgotten in a few days, and why should I care what opinion people who know nothing about me -and still judge me- could have of me?

As for the Prima Donna... All I'll say is she seems a bit confused about the meaning of the word "mistake". The Webster's dictionary defines "mistake" as: "A wrong action attributable to bad judgement or ignorance or inattention". I wouldn't say something done purposely and with the intention of deceiving can be called "bad judgement", "ignorance", or "inattention". Maybe I'm wrong. Also, my concept of "friend" does not include things like lying, deceiving, or cheating. Actually that's what bothers me the most, that she always seems to think she can deceive me. After so many years she should know better than that. A piece of advice on the subject of friendship: Be careful who you call your friends. Flatterers look like friends, as wolves like dogs. Or, quoting one of my favourite films, Swing Kids:
Arvid: 'Quiz time: Got your glasses on?'
Thomas: 'What?'
Arvid: 'It means you don't know who your friends are.'

Mira lo que te has perdío (See what you've lost)

March 20, 2009

no requiem for me yet

I felt sooo guilty when I logged in today and saw the date of my last post was January 18th. =_= LeBacque (hey! ^^/), an old friend from the JDorama forums, sent me a message a few days ago asking "Is it time for a final requiem? No updates in months now." Yeah, I know, and I want to apologize for that. m(_ _)m

So please excuse the long absence. I have a life, of course, and being busy is the main reason why I haven't updated in 2 months. I just finished my internship at the publishing company, and now I have more free time, so I intend to show up here more often. =)

Anyway. Let's recap because there are several important events I missed - which doesn't mean I forgot about them, but I didn't have the time to post about them, so... ^^

Yabu turned 19 on January 31st, and I did make a header for that day, but I didn't have the time to type a birthday post. Then Taiyô and Hikaru graduated from high school last month. Belated congratulations to you two!!! =D We were actually lucky enough to get two clips of Hikaru speaking to the press on that day. I wonder what's JE's policy on this. Perhaps they leave it up to the boys? I mean that there was no interview to Shoon when he graduated, and the same happened with Yabu. ?_? The two clips below were subbed by NEWSHFAN. =) Hikaru was really great: confident, calm, and charming. <3

Sadly Taiyô is not an idol anymore, so even though I had not so very secret hopes that we'd get to see at least a picture of him with Hikaru in some mag or maybe even see them together in one of these TV clips, it didn't happen. ._. Hikaru at the moment doesn't have plans to go to university, but I imagine Taiyô does, because from the accounts we've heard he's a good student. I wonder what degree course he'll choose. The best of luck, Sun, whatever path you take! I suppose it's unlikely we'll hear from you again now you're out of Horikoshi, but we'll always have a warm memory of you. =)

What else happened? The Romeo & Juliet stage play, in which Shoon plays the part of Mercutio, started... and here I am, stuck in Madrid. =_= Well, actually I couldn't have afforded the flight fares and accommodation expenses anyway because right now my economy is not at its best. However, I've comforted myself with the hope of a DVD of the play and also with the fact that I don't feel ready just yet. I want to improve my Japanese in case I ever get to talk to Shoon. I wouldn't want to make a fool of myself. Ganbarimasu! ^.^o

Also... It's not so bad that I stayed, because after I finished my internship I got a job offer from the publishing company! =D Yes! I'll be doing 2 free-lance jobs for them: translate a novel and proofread a translation of a book. ^_____^ Yay!! Hopefully this will lead to more free-lance jobs with them. I'm really excited. =)

Back to Romeo and Juliet, the media coverage of the play has been rather disappointing. I mean that I expected Shoon and Hasejun to promote the play together with Ueda and Kobayashi Ryoko (who plays Juliet) on 2 or 3 TV shows, but in the end Ueda's done it all on his own. =( Oh, well, at least we got to see glimpses of Shoon at the press conference, the rehearsals (like in the clip below, taking fencing lessons with Ueda) and also in small bits of the play shown in the news entertainment shows.

From the accounts of fan friends who have seen the play it seems Shoon's doing really well. =) JE just announced that Ueda will soon be starring in his first TV drama; I hope they have something good in store for Shoon too. ^^

He hasn't been in Shokura for 2 months now, and I want to believe it's just because he's busy with the play, but Ueda was there as a guest, and he has been in many other shows, so that excuse seems too feeble. ;___; Toma, Kazama, and Hasejun disappeared from Shokura one year after 4TOPS was disbanded (and NEWS was formed), so Shoon's been really lucky to have stayed in the show longer than that.

And at least his still a regular in Hyakushiki, which airs every week. With my poor Japanese I don't understand everything, but it's fun to watch, and every week the cast surprises us with some crazy thing, like this: (this episode was about Yokohama and the Hyakushiki boys performed a medley of songs by a popular Japanese group from the 70s called Yokohama Ginbae. =))

For all things Shoon, please join us at the Shoon LiveJournal community... which has reached 1000 members this month!!! =D

And, to finish this entry, a little reflection. A friend wondered in an LJ post, a few weeks ago, if "the few old bitter Ya-Ya-yah fans that are left will have turned into HSJ fans in a year or so". She was -and is- a big Ya-Ya-yah fan and I know she just means to tease =p , but I'd like to share with you all my thoughts and feelings on this matter.

Speaking for myself, I don't think I'll turn into a HSJ fan no matter how many years pass. Actually, it's been more than a year already, and instead of getting used to it all I seem to be going backwards. At first I wanted to overcome my feelings of rejection towards HSJ for Yabu and Hikaru, but just seeing them perform together or seeing pictures of them in the mags brings back all the hurt and anger inside of me. I know I'm not being fair, I know what happened was not their fault, but nobody will ever convince me that it didn't most likely make Taiyô and Shoon feel bitterly disappointed and hurt. For that I'll never forgive JE. I'm also sure that many of the current HSJ members had mixed feelings when their debut was announced. I don't like the way it works, and knowing it's "just business" doesn't help any. Sometimes reality is a hard pill to swallow.

I'll never get used to HSJ singing Ya-Ya-yah songs either, but Stevenica left a comment on one of the previous entries that made me reconcile with the idea in a way: (Thank you so much for this, Stevenica! <3)

About (...) Yabu and Hikaru (...) performing Itoshi no Play Girl (with the rest of HSJ in the HSJ Winter concert), I would like to clarify this because I feel it's something we should appreciate instead of complain about. (...) This winter concert was organized by Yabu & Hikaru. They discussed & prepared about the song list, rundown etc etc. Therefore, to perform Itoshi no Play Girl, and putting Yuuki 100% in the concert song list, was an act for Yabu and Hikaru to show they haven't forgotten their former group, Ya-Ya-yah, and will not forget it. (...) Actually, in the Winter Concert pamphlet, on Yabu’s page, when talking about how he and Hikaru planned and organized the concert, he says: The two of us had discussed performing songs from the past this time. There were many really good songs we had performed before we joined JUMP. Moreover, for both of us, those actually represent many of our memories. (scan of this)"

That's truly thoughtful and sweet of Yabu and Hikaru, isn't it? Yes, I do appreciate it. *hugs the two of them* I feel much better now knowing it was your idea =) ...even if I'll never ever get used to seeing you performing those songs with the rest of HSJ or at the HHS show, without Taiyô and Shoon. m(_ _)m

So no, I'm afraid I won't be turning into a HSJ fan any time soon. XD Maybe I'll tolerate their existence when things start to really look up for Shoon. =p Like... when he gets the same chances as Toma ^^v or at least as the other juniors, instead of being (literally) pushed into a corner in the profile page of the junior calendar with a picture smaller than Shintarô's, getting just 1 page and one pic (on a page with the rest of the Hyakushiki cast), and being left out of all the inter-group pictures, as if he had the plague. ¬¬ *fumes* see offending profile page)

PS: Oh, and... we're not sulking quietly now; just in a cozy, private place. =p Thanks, 'Dee-chan for giving us a home. <3