You might not be the Best and That is Okay

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an excerpt from Ansatsu Kyōshitsu manga by Yūsei Matsui

you can buy it at amazon

 

 

I want to share the excerpt I shown above because I found it relevant for me and I hope it might be relevant for you too. Before you continue reading, please understand that this is just my personal opinion. My high school life was a constant reminder of how different people are in the eyes of society. There was this side of gifted people; genius in academic, or sport, or art, or all of them (not joking, this kind of people exist), and there’s me at the other side; “the others”, people without remarkable achievement. The gifted people received awards, appreciation session in flag ceremonies, and more mentions in speech or documentation. And, guess what, they were the majority in my school. I guess we didn’t really fit in the “winner” culture of the school. We, “the others”, were just like figurants, uncredited actors who play as soldiers killing each other in  the background of a more memorable protagonist vs antagonist fight in a colossal war movie (but we were the minority, so it’s quite confusing). We were not bullied or anything like that, we were just ignored.

Looking back, that treatment of ignorance gave significant impact on us, or maybe just me. It hit my self-esteem and my view on the future. Why do I have to work hard? The gap between me and people above me are constant anyway. It’s an unhealthy thought, but nonetheless persisted.

It took sometime, but I found out about why I was so wrong (never knew it could be so wrong, Boyzone, got the joke? No? Ok, just forget about it). The similar thing with the excerpt above; I don’t have to be like them. I don’t have to be better than them. I don’t have to be the winner in their game. It’s not a competition against them; it has never been a competition. I made such illusion and I always see people above me in my own illusion. It distracted me from the fact that I will always worth more as myself.

And if you’re feeling the same thing like I did before, I hope this post may help you. There is always something in this world where you can never lose to anyone; being you. Be yourself, enjoy yourself, improve yourself, and compete against the present you; because you know that there is no one but you who can be the best of you.

Confusing? Full of nonsense? Welcome to Anton World!

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A Case of a Particular Subreddit: Dawn of Law Among Anonymous People

The law doesn’t protect people. People protect the law. People have always detested evil and sought out a righteous way of living. Their feelings, the accumulation of those peoples feelings are the law. They’re neither the provisions, nor the system. They’re the fragile and irreplaceable feelings that everyone carries in their hearts.

– Akane Tsunemori (Psycho-Pass)

Law is a system of rules that are enforced through social institutions to govern behaviour (that’s what wikipedia said). It is likely that one will learn and stumble upon many kinds and many instances of law that govern one’s behaviour for one’s whole life. One can find influence of law almost everywhere; from traffic law on the road to copyright law on one’s personal computer. Given the sheer power and coverage of law, it is not strange to be awed by the very presence of its existence. Law is just mere words, but society agreed on it, give power to an institution to enforce it, and abide to it. How can people create something that bind themselves? Why would they limit their freedom by developing law? How can law exist in the first place?

A subreddit I stumbled upon give an interesting example.

Oh, and before I go further on the topic, let me give little explanation on what are Reddit and Subreddit.

Reddit, stylized as reddit, is an entertainment, social networking, and news website where registered community members can submit content, such as text posts or direct links, making it essentially an online bulletin board system. Registered users can then vote submissions up or down to organize the posts and determine their position on the site’s pages. Content entries are organized by areas of interest called “subreddits.” The subreddit topics include news, gaming, movies, music, books, fitness, food, and photosharing, among others.

-Taken from Wikipedia

The subreddit I’m going to talk about here is the subreddit made by fans of an idol group from Japan called Sakura Gakuin. These fans, called Fukei-s, posted all things related to Sakura Gakuin, from music videos to photo book scans. These anonymous fans come from many areas in the world (I, myself, from Indonesia), though they do seem to have to be able to comment in English. And it is also noteworthy to mention that quite some number of them are fluent in Japanese, as they have translated and subbed many Japanese videos and articles.

It all started around ten days ago:

first note of SG ban

A Fukei (a member of this subreddit) posted a trailer video for the upcoming sale of the latest SG BD/DVD, and another Fukei made comment suggesting all Fukei-s should restrain themselves from posting videos that might leak the content of the BD/DVD. You can see that this Fukei’s suggestion was not forceful in any way, it even ended with a question mark; asking others whether they will support this idea, far from declaring he was standing in the side of righteousness. This suggestion is unlike popular opinion that anonymity takes people’s responsibility, making people prone to do bad things.

And as you can see on the first reply of his comment, he received supports. It then cultivated into this post:

second note of SG ban

Here, you can see that the previously commenting Fukei started a post to properly discuss or, if I may use the word, “codify” the idea. You can see that the post received quite a lot of comments, 62 to be exact. These anonymous people were, possibly unconsciously, participating in a process similar to legislature process of modern democracy. What we usually see on TV or papers, were happening inconspicuously in an anonymous setting. The 30-day period and the details were all formulated here and it sounded a lot more serious than before.

The rule then got supported by the moderator and the law was enacted.

third note on SG ban

Once just a comment has turned into a law, enforced by those who can punish in the form of post deletion.

fifth note on SG ban

And if you look at the right bar of the subreddit page, you can see a list like I show above. You can see that the fifth rule is the new addition to the rule.

This example is very interesting. It shows a development of law originating from people’s belief on something. And if you remember, it rooted from their care for Sakura Gakuin, which probably has no slightest idea of the event happening in the subreddit, or the subreddit at all. It also shows how people interact in a society and putting order, even when it is not seems to be necessary, as if it’s their nature.

The law is everywhere, but it’s not just because it’s everywhere, it might be because we need it everywhere; and you, as well as I, have role in making sure it is good.

 

 

 

Anton’s note: A debate of whether this is a law or a rule will happen. I, personally, find the moderators are social institution trusted to govern and post deletion is punishment, thus requirements to be defined as “law” are there. But I understand because it didn’t go through proper law development process, it might be considered as just a “rule” and not “law”

 

 

Countdown Asia Fest 2015 Coverage

The stage in Countdown Asia
The stage in Countdown Asia

This is obviously an overdue post. Uploading those photos and videos was definitely a form of torture. Anyway, the coverage is finally here in Anton World, yey! 😀

Countdown Asia Festival 2015 was a Japanese Pop Culture Festival held on June 6th and 7th, 2015 at Lapangan D Senayan, Jakarta. It basically put together modern icon of Japan in one place: manga, anime, cosplay, J-pop, etc. For me, it’s the first Japan-theme event I had ever been to. So, it’s memorable. I went there in the evening (the event itself started on 11AM) on the second day event (June 7th) with my little brother and my high school sweetheart best friend. I knew there were free tickets for the first 100 (or around that number) people who tweeted about the festival. I didn’t expect to get the free ticket but I guessed trying won’t hurt. Aaaand.. I got the free ticket. I was possibly the 20th person, judging from the tally the ticket stall girl made, and that was kinda odd for me; an event this big didn’t get enough social media buzz. Alas, my brother didn’t have internet connection, and I decided to pay for him; 50 thousand T.T

We went in and we didn’t see as much people as we expected, especially in comparison to the size of the venue; it felt like visiting a local museum. But, it’s actually quite comforting for me, I didn’t have to fight the crowd just to move from one spot to another spot, I could just focus on one important activity; enjoying the event. And here’s the highlights:

Maid Cafe

group photo in the maid cafe
group photo in the maid cafe

The first place we went to? Maid cafe! Food and cute girls, yeah!


 

To get a personal time with one of the maids, one must buy a set of meals. I bought a takoyaki set.

To get a love confession from the maid, one must win a game against the maid. I won the game; it’s about making sure to look at the different direction than what your opponent points at.

The cute maid, Abigail, whispered to my ear that she loved me.

Achievement unlocked: Loved by a cute girl.


 

That’s basically my first sweet experience in a maid cafe (my heart went doki-doki whenever I remember it). Oh, we also got to see a special performance by the maids!

Interesting thing was we were probably one of only two groups of  Indonesian customers, the rest were Japanese, and they got about three to four maids for each table.

Dempagumi.inc

While we were strolling around the venue and observing the stalls, a pretty girl in event-staff-like-outfit approached me us. She gave Dempagumi.inc leaflets and say, “Don’t miss Dempagumi on the main stage!” (in English). I asked her,”What time will they perform?” (in Bahasa). And she just smiled and bowed and replying,” Yes, Don’t miss Dempagumi on the main stage!” (still in English). Well, judging from her appearance, she’s probably a native Japanese and still not fluent enough in Bahasa. We thanked her and continued our stroll. Then the time came when Dempagumi.inc showed up.

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I didn’t know who Dempagumi.inc were at that time and I didn’t have any expectation that time. They got on the stage, spoke some Japanese (NO TRANSLATOR! SERIOUSLY!), and the performance started. I can’t really describe it well enough into words. These girls were GREAT! The show was awesome and I can felt their energy through their choreography and voices. I mimicked people around who seemed to know the proper chants and what-fan-supposed-to-do-on-live-event things. It was very exciting! ^^

I realized there were quite a lot of Japanese native in the crowd and they wore distinctive costume. They seemed to be the hardcore fans of Dempagumi.inc since they could sing along and gave proper respond to signals given in some part of the songs; they even had matching towels to wave (look at the picture above) in the proper moments.

I will come to their performance again if they come back to Indonesia (when the time and price are right).

JKT48

JKT 48 on stage
JKT 48 on stage

JKT48 was scheduled to perform next. We could see their renowned fans gathering in front of the stage with their light sticks. I was initially very excited in anticipating their performance, but unfortunately, I then realized I might not be as “JKT48 fan-like” as I thought. They sang five or six songs and I only like two of them, and their performance was quite plain in my opinion. They were definitely not on the same level with Dempagumi.inc.

Momochi Minami [Surprise Performance]

The sky was getting dark and we knew it might be the time to consider going home. But then my little brother ran to the stage and back, informing us that Momochi Minami was DJ-ing. Momochi Minami was scheduled to perform yesterday, not today. So we ran together to the stage and there she was!

In case you still don’t realize it, that’s not her face. She wears mask; that’s her trademark. She considers herself as the “Anime Chick Idol” and never let go of her mask in front of the audience.

Special note: after her performance ended, she went back to the tent behind the stage. But before she went in, SHE LITERALLY WAVED AT THE THREE OF US! How can I be so sure? We were the only group still standing near the stage at that time, and the direction of her look were unmistakably toward us.

Achievement unlocked: got special attention by an idol ^^

Ultraman-s (or Ultramen)

Yup, you seen it right. It’s Ultraman! Ultraman in their real size, which means not in their monster-fighting-building-crushing size. Ultraman Tiga is my favourite Ultraman and the first Ultraman I ever saw on TV, and he was there in front of me, with a very detailed costume (look at that light from his eyes and chest!). That moment was sublime. Regretfully, I didn’t get a chance to take photo with him.

Memento

The loot I took home
The loot I took home

From left to right:

– Dempagumi.inc small poster

– Countdown Asia Map and schedule

– Dempagumi.inc big poster

Re:On 01-03 bundle. (Supporting Indonesian manga industry!!! ^^)

Ringoame (my first ever) and Jiyuu no Tsubasa Necklace

And on top, that’s the gift Abigail gave me *blushing

 

I am looking forward for the next Countdown Asia Festival and I invite you to check it out too!

Abusing Concept of Superlative Adjective to Brighten Your Perspective

A picture I found on a pedestrian overpass around Sudirman. Does it relate to the post? No comment.

Have you ever feeling down? Feeling sad? Or, perhaps, even to the point of thinking about quitting?

The conventional doctrine to face such case will be to be optimistic; to tell yourself that you should be grateful for your hardship, to tell yourself that it is not as hard or unfortunate as you think; to stop saying something negative and start saying something positive to change your mindset.

That is all sound and well. It is not my intention to prevent you from following that doctrine. But just in case you want something different, I might have an alternative for you; admit your negative feeling in an awkward way that it doesn’t really sound negative anymore. It involves using superlative adjective and forfeiting some portion of healthy logic.

Just to make things clearer, superlative is a grammatical form that generally involves using -est in the end of the word or putting most in front; to describe an adjective (or adverb) is greater than any other possible degree of the given descriptor. “The Most Bestest” is an example, grammatically wrong, but you got my point.

Let’s start!

It’s the worst day ever!

Woah, that sounds like…a very good thing to say! Why? Because that means you are saying that this is the worst day ever. Clear? No? You are comparing this day with the days that you had in your life so far and the days that you are going to have in your lifespan (days you have not live yet) and you come to the conclusion that none of them are as bad as this day. That means you are sure that tomorrow and days after tomorrow will be better than this day. It is a message of great hope and optimism for the future. So, let’s say it out loudly together: It’s the worst day ever!

Logic to forfeit:

You don’t really have any information about the future and thus you are only comparing this day with the days you have lived in the past. It is just a complaint, really. Nothing positive here.

Warning of potential backlash:

Don’t use this superlative concept on something positive. Example: “it’s the best day ever”. If we use the same concept, then, we’re telling ourselves that tomorrow will be worse than today. Capish?

Do you have any other example? Drop it in the comment section below, or the communicator on the right bar side, and I will add it to this post. I will appreciate them! XOXO from El Presidente of Anton World