arisha: (vampire productivity)
Oh my goodness how have I not posted since February. :|

Well if you would like to read posts by me I have just written a stilted couple of reviews here in the [ profile] japanesebookrec community. Which reminds me -- I have books to add (totally out of order) to my list!!

6. 劇団6年2組 (Gekidan 6nen 2kumi), which you can read about at the link above.

7, 8, 9, 10. The Spiderwick Chronicles #2, #3, #4 and #5 in Japanese!
I quite enjoyed this series for its content but also because my current reading level is such that I could understand them easily but still pick up a lot of vocab on the way. Now that I have finished them I feel like I am floundering a bit trying to figure out what else I can read. I got out the first book of the sequel series but it looks like it might be aimed at slightly older kids and so perhaps more difficult? We'll see I guess. At the moment I am reading Coraline which is going better than I would have expected. I really need to stop picking books from the translated section though ...

11. The Homework Myth by Alfie Kohn
An argument that there is no evidence that homework helps kids learn, and in fact it might be doing the exact opposite. I found this book perhaps abnormally interesting. It is pretty ridiculous how few studies have actually been done on the effects of homework! Also, my least favourite thing about this book is how every negative review on Goodreads employs an argument that Kohn totally deconstructs in the book. Did ... did you guys actually read it??

12. Achilles by Elizabeth Cook
I've mentioned this book before, but this time I wrote a much longer post about it here.

By the way, my super nerdy and ridiculous Trojan War blog has seven followers now.


arisha: (epic mickey: in which disney blows my mi)
~ Is The Black Cauldron seriously getting a 25th Anniversary DVD release before Hercules or The Hunchback of Notre Dame get proper DVD releases? I mean, I'm digging the whole ~love for unloved characters~ thing Disney has going on right now, but seriously??

~ I got paid today and have already ordered another batch of JLPT books. I have soooo many language learning books now haha. I've been thinking of starting a blog or something and posting reviews of these things, but I can't decide if that would motivate me to study or if it would just distract me. :P

~ A couple days ago I finished the first chapter of the textbook I'm using to teach myself Korean! (Don't be too impressed - the most complex thing I can say so far is "I'm not Korean, I'm American," which isn't even true.) I don't think I picked the best language to try to teach myself - the pronunciation is a lot more difficult than I thought it would be - but overall it's been going okay. It's not as completely similar to Japanese as I had been led to believe (or maybe it is and I just can't tell yet, haha), but there are definitely strong similarities, and I do love it when I can guess what a word means just because it's pretty much the same. xD I have no idea how to transliterate anything, but "college student" is "daigakusei" in Japanese and "dehakseng" in Korean and I think that's awesome! xD Also, I love that some of the particles have different forms depending on whether the preceding word ends in a vowel or a consonant. Such a rule would be all but useless in Japanese! xD

~ In boring rl news, I've spent most of today feeling nauseous; I got sent home from work early (my managers are awesome sometimes) and fell asleep in my uniform, ewwww. So that sucked. (brb stocking up on stronger painkillers for next month. -_- ) But I also managed to get caught up on all the most recent Yesterland articles, which was a perfect way to spend the afternoon I think! Man that site is way too fascinating to me. :)
arisha: (al is confused)
More things I forgot I'm excited about:

- EPIC MICKEY. What I know of the plot so far makes it sound like little more than a less confusing Kingdom Hearts, and the gameplay graphics I've seen haven't impressed me terribly much, but oh my god the concept art-- and the unloved characters-- and PLEASE NOTE 0:40 OF THE ABOVE VIDEO




If Alice of the Alice shorts (which I looooove) manages to make her way into this game in any way at all, I am pretty much guaranteed to pass out from OH MY GOD DISNEY YOU JUST BLEW MY MIND.

- Tangled! I am glad to see Disney carrying on their new tradition of ridiculous heroes. First Edward, then Naveen, and now this guy? I'm down with that. xD

- Toy Story 3 is tomorrow and DON'T TOUCH MY MOUSTACHE!*

* Seriously guys, this joke is in Toy Story 2 and I really want to know how many people get it because I didn't get it until a good six years of studying Japanese. "Don't touch [my] moustache" is a beginner's way to remember how to say "Dou itashimashite," which means "you're welcome." How awesome is it that this joke made it into the movie, man I'm still not over it.


Feb. 22nd, 2010 02:44 pm
arisha: (reina tanaka kanashiki koi)
omg you guys I passed the JLPT, what is this madness.

Writing and Vocab: 54/100
Listening: 64/100
Reading and Grammar: 152/200
Total: 270/400

SIXTY-SEVEN PERCENT that is the worst pass of my life! I kind of want to take it again just to do better than that. Maybe I will, we'll see. I mean, I should probably learn this stuff rather better before I make an attempt at Level 1, anyway. x)

Man I am really surprised to be able to say that I only have one level of this test left to pass. I know it's not the best indicator of actual ability in the language - it's a multiple choice exam which tests neither writing* nor speaking - but still, like I said in my last entry about it, I can totally remember when even Level 4 seemed absolutely impossible. I like being able to see progress in myself, lol.

* Okay there is a writing section but you're not the one doing any of the writing, is what I mean.
arisha: (potc3 liz boat)
13. Liar Game (Season 1), 2007
So I finally took up [ profile] frauleinfrog's suggestion of watching Japanese TV series as a way to get more listening practice, but, having forgotten the specific series she suggested (lol, I'm horrible as always), I found myself just going down a list of dorama and clicking on whatever random titles sounded interesting. After reading the summary of Liar Game's first episode I decided this would be the one I'd watch, and omg, accidentally finding something that you then discover is awesome is one of the best things ever.

This show begins with the "stupidly honest" Nao's accidental participation in the title game. She is given a hundred million yen and an opponent. If she can steal her opponent's money, she gets to keep it; if her opponent steals her money, she'll end up with a horrific debt. When her opponent tricks her out of her hundred million, she hires a swindler to help her get it back, not realizing that this is only the first round.

I kind of love this show, from its campy camerawork and slightly unbelievable plot (does Nao not have a job? how does she afford that apartment of which I am superbly jealous??) to its shameless use of the theme from Requiem for a Dream and its overuse of maniacal evil laughter. (I actually rather disliked that latter until I watched the final episode, in which it is used pretty perfectly.) I love that it's a G-rated psychological thriller that really knows how to create suspense (and has amusing moments and even made me tear up a couple times, haha srsly!), I love that you're always encouraged to try to figure out the games the characters are playing and the strategies they're using to play them, I even love that every possible form of the verb damasu ("to trick, to cheat, to deceive") is now permanently burned into my brain. I do wonder how much rewatch value a series like this has, since I think a lot of its awesomeness comes from not knowing what's going to happen next. But I won't worry about that now - I've still got the entire second season to enjoy!

Also, I downloaded this show and actually felt pretty bad about that until I discovered that to legally own these eleven episodes would cost about a hundred and seventy dollars. I don't feel quite so guilty anymore. :|
arisha: (reina tanaka imi ga nai)
~ Apparently everyone who wrote the JLPT in Japan or the U.S. has their results already. Uncool!! I can understand Japan getting them early, but why does the States get their results before Canada does? I am getting pretty impatient over here. It sucks to not have any idea how you did. D:

~ So, remember that Korean class I was going to take that got cancelled? It's kinda sorta happening anyway! xD The teacher e-mailed me a couple days ago to see if I'd be interested in group lessons with her and one of the other students who'd signed up for the course. Um, awesome?? We're starting next Saturday. :D And right now I am paying all this attention to my other two most favourite second languages, just so they don't feel neglected. xD lol!

~ I was going to write a longer entry but ... I've changed my mind. Have a good night, everyone! xD
arisha: (potc2 will epic)
Sometimes I feel the need to write an entry about Pirates of the Caribbean just to ensure everyone knows that my love for these movies runs deeper than my love for pretty much anything and everything else.

That's a bit of a winding introduction just to say I've discovered that on YouTube one can watch the entire trilogy dubbed into Spanish. As one of my nearest and dearest hobbies is watching and rewatching my favourite movies dubbed into any of the languages I can kind of understand*, I think I can safely say that the rest of my weekend is shot. :D

* I've already seen the Pirates trilogy in Japanese, and was perhaps way too fascinated by the whole "kokoro"/"shinzou"/"haato" thing. xD AND THEN IN AT WORLD'S END THEY MESSED UP MY FAVOURITE LIIIIIIINE D':

Anyway, I apologize if this is all I want to talk about for the next month or so. :D Who here remembers when I was equally obsessed with Prisoner of Azkaban in its Spanish dub? OH WHO AM I KIDDING I STILL AM
arisha: (reina tanaka kanashiki koi)
Quick recap of my feelings re: Level 2 of the JLPT! I took it this morning, but omg it already feels like it was years ago. D:

I can't believe I got up at seven-thirty. )
arisha: (morning musume shabondama)
So I totally forgot to change the excerpt on my NaNo profile before I went to work today, and by the time I got home it was too late! xD hahaha, oh well. But huge congratulations to everyone who won!! I know I've said this to several of you already but I'm just so proud of you guys that I feel the need to say it again, lol! I'm already looking forward to the next crazy novelling season. :)

In other news, tomorrow is my sixth of six straight days at work. I'm not too happy that I ended up working six days in a row the week before the JLPT, especially when I booked time off specifically for studying purposes. I'm really getting sick of how understaffed we constantly seem to be, it's ridiculous. At least tomorrow I have the option of leaving early. :/ Fingers crossed I can somehow wrangle my way out of my Friday shift, although I don't really see it happening, so maybe you should save your finger crossing for the hope that I somehow manage to pass the test!! x)

ahaha, won't you guys be so glad when it's December seventh and I can finally stop talking about this?? YES!!!
arisha: (Default)
~ First off, if anyone cares, I edited the answers to my movie quiz into the post. And now I am stealing another meme. )

~ I should probably mention at some point that I have kinda-sorta-mostly dropped out of NaNoWriMo this year. In a previous entry where I was freaking out about my ability to finish NaNo and pass the JLPT, [ profile] the_wykydtron correctly pointed out that I would be more upset if I failed the JLPT than if I failed NaNo, and ... there it is. I'm glad I made this decision, because I have definitely felt less stressed since I made it, but at the same time I'm really bummed and really frustrated that I let myself get so behind in both tasks that in the end I had to drop one completely. I shall just have to do lots of writing in December to make up for it, I guess! :3 (lol, but remind me to change my excerpt before it's too late! I'm not sure I like the current one enough for it to be up for an entire year. ^^; )

UGH though, the amount of work I'm having to do to protect my precious little study time! It's like as soon as I decided that studying was my number one priority, all of my co-workers have a desperate need for me to take their shifts. Often because they have exams to study for, lolariously enough. Well too bad, I booked this time off and it is MINE. :P

~ My mom's work is doing this thing through the Salvation Army where each employee is assigned a child in need to buy a Christmas present for! My mom was supposed to buy a gift for a five-year-old girl, and so yesterday she and I went and bought a bouncing Tigger board game sort of thing (and the necessary batteries) and a Dora the Explorer puzzle. (lol, yes, a puzzle - I'm totally going to be one of those adults from whom no kid wants to get presents, haha!) So that was fun! Mom asked what my work is doing for the holidays and I kind of laughed at that. Like, one year I think they did a can drive, and that's about it. I don't have a lot of faith in the humanitarian spirit of this company. :X

~ November has gone way too quickly, what the heck. :|
arisha: (reina tanaka imi ga nai)
For some reason, lately I feel like writing a lot of random posts about music I shamelessly enjoy. Having said that ...



cut for a lotta youtube )
arisha: (morning musume shabondama)
Things that are not awesome:
1) NaNoWriMo ends in nine days and I have only just now passed 10k. I'm not even really sure why this year is going so pathetically for me ... it just is.

2) The JLPT is in fifteen days and I am so completely unprepared. I am starting to seriously feel like I am going to fail. One of my co-workers asked me what will happen if I fail, and I replied with "Nothing," but ... I still don't want to. I'll really hate myself if I do. I don't want to have to wait another full year to take Level 2 again when it's already been five years since I passed Level 3!!

3) The above two points are frustrating me very much right now. :( I feel almost as if I should give up on NaNoWriMo so I can focus completely on the JLPT, but at the same time I intensely don't want to. ffffffffff I dunno. My next couple days off I just gotta BUST IT. And I have to ignore the temptation to fill up my days off with social outings, because I've just had an awesome four days off, but I definitely did not get any work done. :/

Things that are awesome:
1) I woke up this morning to a Christmas card from [ profile] firecrackerrrr! <3

2) My co-workers being their ridiculous selves.

3) I've finally written over 8,000 LJ comments!! bahahahaha. >xD I'm pretty sure the last like 2,000 of those are entirely from July till now.

4) This song.
arisha: (amadeus couple)
Yay, I got interviewed again!! :D This time the questions are from [ profile] frauleinfrog. News travels fast in Vienna. )

In other news, tomorrow I am going to This Is It for the second time in three days, and a Twilight t-shirt party for the second time in eight days. ahahaha, my life this week is so ridiculous but I love it. FANDOM ALL OVER THE PLACE!! xD Hopefully I can fit some studying in here somewhere. D:
arisha: (colbert singin' in Korean)
Time for a totally random picture post!

hontou ni waratteru ko nante iru no kana )
arisha: (morning musume shabondama)
I have done this meme twice in the past but I love it so much I am doing it again!

List seven songs you are into right now, no matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they're not any good, but they must be songs you're really enjoying now. Post these instructions in your LiveJournal along with your seven songs. Read more... )
arisha: (reina tanaka kanashiki koi)
For those of you not in the know, I shall be spending the first Sunday of December writing Level 2 of the Japanese Level Proficiency Test. I took Level 3 in 2005 (I can't get over that I last took this test FOUR YEARS AGO -- pretty sure I didn't intend for there to be such a huge gap) and passed with 80%, but now we are less than a month till I take Level 2 and I am pretty well FREAKING OUT. Like seriously, I am cutting down my work schedule quite severely just so I have more time to study. D:

Anyway, I was going through some kanji on Read the Kanji, and I figured I would post my Level 2 kanji grid! )

In conclusion: BRB STUDYING!!

lol sorry this post was kinda pointless. x)
arisha: (ai takahashi)
~ I just had a surprisingly pleasant five days of work! I say "surprisingly" because I was in box office the entire five days, and so it could easily have gone worse, but I don't think I had a single frustrating guest the entire time! Faith in humanity: RESTORED!! I also sold a bunch of tickets to This Is It, including once while "The Love You Save" was playing over the lobby radio (I still don't quite understand how that song has made it into our Top 40 station, but it's cool that it has!).

~ I studied Japanese for an hour today, awesomesauce!! :D I learned a couple new grammar points, so that was awesome. I basically cannot explain how happy studying grammar makes me. Anyway, for much of my JLPT studying this year I've been doing the exercises in this book, but now that I'm very nearly done it I decided to shake things up a bit and start doing the exercises in this book, which just arrived for me this week. :3 WHY YES that book is all about learning the Level 2 grammar points in a mere forty-five days! We are getting close to test date and I am getting nervous. D: I also got another book that's all for learning the Level 2 vocabularly in fifty days, hahaha. Too bad I no longer have fifty days!!

(Man I do love my growing collection of foreign language textbooks. xD I definitely also own a textbook or two for languages I'm not even studying ...)

In conclusion, I fully expect my November 2009 to be all about NaNoWriMo and the JLPT, and not much else. I am looking forward to a month of obsessing over studying, it reminds me of when I was studying around the clock for the AP Spanish exam and pretty well lost my ability to understand English. xD WORTH IT.

~ In other news, Facebook just told me I should reconnect with a co-worker I saw every day this week and last saw four hours ago. Oh Facebook, you know me so well.
arisha: (Default)
Last night I learned of the K-pop group Kara through a random comment someone made in a MoMusu forum, and today I have had their song "Wanna" on REPEAT. I have no idea why I love this song so much, but omg, I kinda do. (Even if the video uses that "hey let's go destroy my ex's stuff" trope that leaves such a bad taste in my mouth.)

Anyway, I am only letting myself get into K-pop if I can put on hold my desire to study Korean. (That writing system just seems like the coolest thing to me!) I'm supposed to be passing the JLPT in two months!!! And somehow keeping up with my Spanish as well, somehow ... Studying multiple languages was so much easier when I had classes in both of them. I was looking at the list of language tutors on the UVic web site today, but before I get a tutor I should probably decide what I'd want from them, haha. Because I mean, it's not like I have specific homework they could help me with or anything. :/ Or maybe I should just start making use of all those language-learning sites I've signed up for in the past, hahaha, oh man I'm so disorganized.

I did study some JLPT grammar yesterday, though! So. There's that. :) Oddly enough I've been doing better on this workbook's kanji pages than on its grammar pages, something I definitely did not expect! I am a grammar fangirl, hahaha.

In other news, I find this fandom!secret kind of sad but also amusing, because it's so different from my life! Pretty sure when [ profile] the_wykydtron and I go see a play, as soon as intermission hits we're already discussing gender. Especially when we went to see "The Fantasticks," which was ... interesting. D:
arisha: (Default)
~ lol at how poorly I've been keeping up with my own LJ this past week. ^^;

~ Today I forced [ profile] the_wykydtron to watch The Neverending Story and in return she pointed out all the plot holes I'd never noticed. Which kind of pained me, because when I was a kid I thought that movie was so brilliant. In related news, the Nostalgia Critic's review is hilarious. xD

~ My test voucher for the JLPT arrived today, and I discovered that the Level 2 test is being held at nine in the morning. D: And the friend I'm probably staying with doesn't live particularly close to the test location, so that'll be a fun morning. Anyway, inspired by the arrival of the voucher, I did some grammar practice ... and got a score of 3/8. Horrendous!!

~ My future husband interviewed Michael J. Fox today! I'm not particularly a fan of his acting work (well, with the exception of the "A, My Name is Alex" episodes of Family Ties and also that episode of Scrubs where he played the doctor suffering from OCD), but I heart him so much for all the work he's been doing to fight Parkinson's disease. And I HATE that he's been accused of exaggerating his symptoms. I don't know what it's like for you guys to watch him, but for ten years I lived with my grandmother as she was suffering from this disease, and in my mind there is no way he is acting. Watching this interview tonight, there were so many times where, for a split second, I felt like I was watching my grandma. And I really heart Michael J. Fox for going out there and doing all these public appearances where it's really obvious he can't control his movements, because on her bad days I'm pretty sure Grandma didn't even really want to be seen by her family members. So yeah, just for all that he's probably one of my favourite celebs, not gonna lie.

(My future husband also did a 2008 interview with Lee Thomas in which they discussed MJ's vitiligo. They reaired it recently and it was an awesome change of pace from all the tabloid trash~)

~ Speaking of awesome Canadians, I've definitely had "Canadian, Please" stuck in my head all day. xD


arisha: (Default)

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