sjcarpediem: (Default)
( Feb. 12th, 2011 09:46 pm)
Miserable freezing rain, 3C (-3C)

My go ranking dropped. That's it. No more resigning games. Once I know I'm losing, I'll just play crazy till the other guy passes.

I want to be good at go, damnit! Someone teach me in a language I understand very well and easily....

I want to be good at so many things, but I feel like this is the biggest challenge for me right now.

In other [less significant, mind you,...] news, I signed contracts and got the key for my new apartment today. So much Japanese legalese I couldn't speak or write properly for an hour or so after... Tomorrow I move in. All the utilities except Internet are on. I have to arrange a new contract with NTT [East, remember?].

Tuesday I get my last paycheck from GEOS ; I plan to buy appliances with it.

I also need to get tea towels for introduction gifts to my neighbors. I think I'll go out for that after the boxes are moved and at least the futon and clothes chest is sorted.

No more morning and evening go games for a while. I hope to get a tall, wide bookcase soon (also with Tuesday's pay, but on Rakuten so delivery won't be immediate), then I can unpack my books--including the go ones, and I'll read those again. Maybe this time it'll sink through my hard, thick skull into my brain, where I'll make good use of it.

I'd like to get several things with that paycheck. I hope it's bigger than I'm expecting!

Still no word on two of the parttime jobs I applied to--one already said I live too far away from them. No other ideas for paying tuition, yet.

After another two weeks or so, I should be back online. To various effect.

God help me--on so many fronts.
sjcarpediem: (Default)
( Feb. 6th, 2011 03:08 pm)
Mostly cloudy, 11C (14C)

I'm so frustrated. It's about igo. After months and months, last night and today I logged back in to PandaNet and KGS.

I keep losing. I can make life but I always fall short on territory. But nobody wants to play a 13x13 board...

I know the shape I'm making is heavy and clunky and ugly, but I can't make a good shape. I'm always in gote and it sucks really hard. Whether I play white or black, I always have to respond and never get to initiate. I feel like a complete moron. Seriously. Complete. Moron. And playing more games... I'm just losing more. And I really don't want to be one of those ppl with 18000 losses and 11000 wins and still barely 16kyu... That's not cool. It's not fun. I want to enjoy it, damnit!

I duno what the hell to do to improve. It's pissing me off. My Japanese is so low that reading books on igo theory are too much work and trouble and I can't get through anything. Replaying my own games... not really useful. Maybe I should replay other games... for instance, those played by people who actually know how to play...

Tsumego are fine but don't address the problem of how to actually freaking play. I mean, I get the gist but none of my games ever seem to go that way. That's no good. Why don't they follow the standard sequence of phases!? The only thing I can guess is that lower-level players that I'm matched against don't know enough about it to know they're playing out of order, and I'm too low-level to get games with higher-level players.

On KGS, it's seriously like most of the ppl on there are just throwing stones around thinking, "I'll crush you!"--what about the game!? It's a goddamned game, not a first-person shooter. You have to build it.

I almost want someone sitting next to me to tell me if I'm understanding the board and the moves correctly. I don't want to play another pro until I can at least handle ppl in my own ranking. And I want to progress in the rankings!

I need to be more independent. I need to study more. I need to... somehow... come to some sort of understanding with this that allows it to be fun.
sjcarpediem: (Default)
( Jun. 2nd, 2010 11:58 pm)
Mostly clear, 16C (17C)

I had a bad dream. It wasn't bad enough to be a nightmare, but it wasn't good enough to be indifferent so I'll say it was bad. I'll guess it's environmentally/stress induced. It was pretty incredible. I woke up, late, right in the middle of it, so it stayed with my groggy self for longer than dreams usually do. Maybe it would be a nightmare to some people, but it all seemed horrifically normal and predictable to me. This is mildly surprising. I'm glad it's over--at least the slumbering part.

As a kind of therapy I've entered a raffle. Last year I entered this same raffle and all kinds of issues were brought to the fore because of my involvement with it. I've thought about that and the underlying reasons a bit since then. Entering again is rather like a test. Now I shall put it out of my mind and see what happens. I hope only things that I can immediately recognize as good...

Some more details are emerging about what the future in my job might look like--but not really enough. For example ; I now know what the various ranks are paid and how they are defined, but I don't know what my rank in the company would be. Who the hell knows. I'm kindof tired and kindof fed up but also kindof out of ideas and a little too apathetic. Part of me insists it'll all be fine, the other part wonders how the hell that's going to happen.... you see the conflict, I suppose.

Speaking of work, I was magnificently unproductive today during my four-hour lull in teaching--I read wikipedia articles on figures of Sengoku-jidai. Fantastic stuff. I've been rather encouraged lately, as I'm getting more and more of the jokes and references in the anime I watch. This was one of the things I mentioned wanting to acquire in terms of cultural and linguistic literacy that I figured I wasn't going to get in Kawanoe. Freakishly enough, the source for this--anime and cetera were equally available to me in Kawanoe ; I just never accessed them there. But now that I'm in a city it seems wholly more appropriate and becoming to feed my curiosity in these matters. Either way, I'm happy in this one little sphere, at least.

I made reservations at the old samurai house this morning for Kanazawa in July. It was terribly exciting and I'm terribly excited about it all! Thank God for small miracles--like ppl painlessly prodding. Now I have something to look forward to, and I need that. For a healthy change in pace I'll be traveling with another human being (usu I'm solo) : Tsubasa.

I've been thinking a lot about martial arts and such... I think these thoughts are interesting and insightful syntheses. Experience, again, is the final arbiter of learning... I want to play a lot more go but I've been somewhat depressed and my sleep is all messed up... excuses, excuses, I know. I'll let them slide for just a bit longer. Probably the rest of this week.

Also, following a particularly incensing drunken conversation, which I'm sure I only half-understood, I've come to the conclusion that perhaps I have simply become one of those people who are alone for good and for ever. Somehow, this does not bother me so much. I'm reminded of a letter I once wrote in which I begged someone to find some light to dispel their darkness--now I wonder why ; my darkness, at least, is velvety-smooth : perhaps his was as well.
sjcarpediem: (Default)
( Apr. 26th, 2010 07:33 pm)
Sunny, 17C (17C)

Ahh, it's been such a long time since I've been subversive!

So, today after go class I broke into the school with my keys, signed my "Working Conditions Agreement" and faxed it, forwarded my coworker's to her, then let loose the hellhounds of INFOS on all the schools in the "company". (Nothing terrible, just a little something some other teachers and I have been working on this weekend. Honestly, lots of ppl should bow down and thank us--and it wasn't even mostly my doing!) :-D

I might get into some trouble for that...

Hmm. But then, again, that was why I offered so strongly to be the one to do it.**

Oh, man, some Offspring from, like, 2001, just came up on my shuffle. I want more Offspring...! And now 369 from last year... ahh, the time. It passes. Etc, usw.

Anyway, about go class, I told sensei that my company went bankrupt so I planned to take a two-month break but wanted to come back after that. He said they'd be waiting for me, and I felt he was being genuine. I didn't get to play Takano-sensei, today, but I played three others (including sensei, who actually took our game seriously). I notice I have less patience with some than with others. I usually lose it when they try to take back one of my moves ; it doesn't seem to matter if I even agree with them. That's pretty immature and I should really try harder to curb it. My last game was satisfying, though. I'm glad. I'll play more on PandaNet during my hiatus and will be a stronger player the next time they see me. I swear it. :-)

Anyway, I ought to take a shower, or something. Tomorrow and Wednesday I work, but then it's Golden Week. Things shouldn't get too terrible before I get a little pay on May 10th or 15th ; besides, I can stand to lose a few kilos. Depending on how they're figuring the per diem payments from the 16th (counting only scheduled working days or days in the work-period), I may even be able to clear rent for this month. Bonzai and Huzzah! Gambaryo!

**Part of my American Complex. I like to think that, in spite of or perhaps because I feel so rejected from and niche-less in my one and only country, caught as I am between generations without a culture to call my own, I possess the best my country has to offer the world. Though sometimes I recklessly play the hero, too. In this case, knowledge is power and I'd rather go down in flames as a conduit than drown in the stagnating cesspool of it. I even purposely refrained from contributing too greatly so that I could hold this out as my "one contribution". Chances are best I won't suffer too much for it, but it just wouldn't be right if those trying hardest to help the poor fools wandering in darkness safely find an exit were punished. Using company matériel (email) could certainly be considered an infraction of sorts but it is by far the most efficient way to deliver the goods to the widest possible [non-public] audience... Honestly, it's a gamble. It's a good thing I'm ballsier than I was... however long ago I wasn't this ballsy.


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