“Language is the most massive and inclusive art we know, a mountainous and anonymous work of unconscious generations.”

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

A New Year, Future Prospects, and Chinese Things

Well, after having completely neglected this blog for way too long (and after just three posts too, woops), I'm back! The past several months have been a bit hectic to say the least; I'm back in Poland for my second year of university, I've been working with Polish actors for my Dryadian play, I've met tons of new people from all over the world, and I freaking created my own holiday (despite it not being officially recognized by any large organization or governing body, but who cares)! But it's a New Year, and even though it's technically just another arbitrary day among the other 365.25 days of the year with no inherent significance, I still think it's a great time to make a fresh start. Therefore, I'm putting in the effort to not only lead a healthier lifestyle (i.e. eating better, sleeping better, exercising, etc.) but to also continue posting on this blog in a timely manner. (Knowing me however, I'll probably forget again or get too busy...)

Anyways, I've been learning some Greek... well, a lot of Greek. At the moment I'm planning on going to Athens for the following school year on the ERASMUS program with my university, so I gotta know some Greek, right? When in Rome do as the Romans do! There's a myriad of Greek students this year in Wrocław, and as a result I get plenty of practice on a pretty much day-to-day basis. Not to mention my re-watching of practically every Disney and Pixar movie dubbed in Greek which helps a lot. Actually, prior to watching Star Wars Episode VII, I had decided to watch all previous episodes, except with Greek subtitles to practice of course! Before immersing myself in the world of Greek, however, I was learning some Kazakh and a bit of Farsi too at one point, although they failed to hold my interest long enough for me to become significantly proficient in them (sadly). Outside of natural languages, I recently created a new personal language I call "Epistemic", which I then used to write lyrics to Shostakovich's Second Waltz and cover in my (non-professional) singing voice (here). It turned out quite nice to my surprise, and I'm quite satisfied with the language as a whole. Maybe I'll be able to fully utilize it and possibly attain a level of fluency one day? Who knows... My play however is coming along quite nicely; I've written some songs and I'm almost done with the translation. Both the director and the actors seem to be really enjoying it, and I can't wait to see it on stage. I did a dramatic reading of the first 3 scenes with added music and the English translation to get a sense of the play's final form.

For whatever reason, I've had a sudden resurgence of enthusiasm for Chinese, both Mandarin and Cantonese. About a week or two ago, having barricaded myself inside to escape the deathly, freezing temperatures, I began watching the Chinese fantasy series 花千骨 (The Journey of Flower) and it is really really good (quite reminiscent to 仙剑奇侠传1&3 which I was obsessed with last year, when I studied quite a bit of Mandarin and my proficiency improved immensely). However, as I began watching this new series, I also got into watching some Stephen Chow movies in Cantonese and exploring more into the depths of Cantonese music (having already loved GEM's 喜歡你). And now I'm starting to learn some Cantonese here and there! The pronunciation of characters in Cantonese seem closer to Korean pronunciation of hanja than the Mandarin does, which helps a bit. (I guess Cantonese shares some similarities with Middle Chinese that Standard Mandarin has lost?)

Here I am talking about languages and things, yet the winter break has come to an end and I have some essays and studying to be focusing on for the end of the semester! (typical...)

"The procrastination is strong in this one..."

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