That’s right, I’m officially the age of the name of a famous ice cream franchise. And to keep from getting sued, or worse, chastised by the blog police, a story is in order about 31:
You see, in Japan (and pretty much everywhere outside the US) Baskin Robbins is called 31 Flavors. And it’s an amazingly interesting phenomenon. You’ll see a sign, or even the logo above, proudly displaying the words ‘Baskin Robbins’ in English and then right under it in smaller letters サーティワンアイスクリーム (thirty one ice-cream).
If you ask where the closest Baskin Robbins is, you’ll be met with blank stares. But if you ask for a 31, you’ll get directions to five of the closest joints. I have confirmed reports of this happening in South Korea, Singapore, and Malaysia as well.
In any case, that’s how old I just turned.
And it put some perspective on this same post around the same time last year: Jaybot turns 30, realizes life is complicated. You should probably read it if you want any of the following musings to make sense. But I hate homework as much as the next person, so you can skip it too. You know, if you think I never make sense (I won’t argue) or if you simply like feeling lost, that’s cool too.
After reading through that post from a year ago, I think a few things have happened which have alleviated the situation:
I am now in Japan, so that problem is solved… for now. Now the trick is to figure out how to stay 🙂
I’m still with the same girl (still not married, but… no rush), so no huge worries there (she’s calmed down about the hurry to get married as well, she must have fell for my wily lines! Bwahahah!).
I released two games in the Arvale series, all by myselfs (picture a kid in his superman underwear proudly saying that with a big smile on his face, after coming out of the bathroom, and you’ll have an idea of how happy I am to say that) While they’re not paying the bills by any means (yet?), they do sell a respectable number of copies to buy me an extra bowl of ramen at the end of the month. And that’s more than I had originally anticipated. I’m also happy to be working with Duncan again, I love that guy! 🙂 And yes, the third Episode is well underway and will be released soon*.
As far as Japanese studying: I passed 3級 of the 能力試験 back in December and I’m taking 2級 next month. I plan on passing 1級 this December as well. I’m still by some means (mostly mine) not fluent. Certain people like to ask silly questions like ‘How fluent are you?’ or ‘What % do you understand?’ I can’t blame them, most of them only speak 1 language and simply don’t understand what they’re trying to ask.
In any case, I understand a crapload (I also don’t understand a crapload). In any case, I can read books and comics and enjoy them, same with playing games, I can enjoy watching movies and TV shows and cartoons (my favorite) with no subtitles or limited 日本字幕 (Japanese subtitles, which are necessary for more advanced stuff like the 落語 sections in タイガーアンドドラゴン). I’ve also applied to two jobs in Japanese. I went to one interview and did the entire interview in Japanese (although it was… a challenge to say the least). So gauge as you wont (not a typo pronounced like want, short form for ‘are wont to do’).
At this point, I could even apply to go to a 専門学校 (technical school) such as ハル HAL and try to get into a Japanese gaming powerhouse like Nintendo through the front door. That’s always a backup plan if my back-door ninja tactics don’t work out. 😉
As far as blogging. It’s still fun. There is still a point to it (and a huge advantage to be publishing things online, for next to no cost, I highly recommend doing so). I don’t do dissertations on certain topics lately simply because I don’t want to look up the word dissertation in the dictionary and be wrong. That, and I’m a bit short on time these days, if you couldn’t tell from the last 6 paragraphs. I do spend a bit more time on Twitter than I used to, simply because it’s fun.
I still have no proper job. Well that’s a bit regular for me… however…
I had this funny thought this morning on the train, I like the idea of communism. No, no, put down the flags and stop screaming, hear me out… I like the idea of wearing the same clothing, working at the same job, everyone working together and getting paid the same salary depending on the task alloted to them in the structure set up by… me 🙂
I want my own personal communism. I want the drone of going to work and wearing a tie (actually I like dressing up in a suit and I’m terrible at hiding that fact) and working together with others of a like mind on the same project and all the really evil stuff you hear from the ‘free-yourself-from-the-corporate-slave-world’ which is all over the internet lately… if I get to work at the company I want, doing what I want to do, and getting paid what I want. Of course, I have to work really hard to get there. But it’s an achievable personal goal. I’m working really hard to achieve communism. Wait, I think I need to redefine that 🙂
Where was I? Oh yes, perspective. In any case, I may be 31 and have no job, no house, no wife, no kids, and no debt (ironically, I took out a loan to come to Japan to study). But I have a lot of other things. Including perspective. And opportunities. And goals. Amazing what can happen in one short year.
What were you doing 1 year ago? Is life the same? Better? Worse?
Lie down on Dr. Jaybot’s couch and discuss 🙂
*By soon, I mean the indefinite time period by which it refers to. Until I announce the official date, I really don’t want to torture anyone with finite time periods 🙂
January in Japan