Random Thoughts

I’m long overdue for a post and I feel like if I try to write something serious then it’ll end up in my draft box for eternity, so I’ll just write some random thoughts. I’m a bit short on sleep at the moment, so sorry if there are spelling or grammar errors.

“Nexus” by ClariS makes me happy. I don’t care if it’s girly or otaku-y or whatever, it’s just fun to listen to. The melody is so catchy, and the rhythmic contrast from the percussion is on point. I would link to a YouTube video, but I couldn’t find one of the original song, just remixes.

The name of my blog is embarrassing. I’m going to change it as soon as I think of something better. Why is it that the first name I think of is always stupid? It’s like this with everything. Even the name of my first Neopet back in grade school was stupid.

Recently, I stumbled across an old post on Yard Sale of the Mind (which is a great blog name, by the way. Why couldn’t I have thought of something like that?) that reads, in part:

“The so-called ‘contemporary’ masses around here are mostly run by and for elderly hippies and wannabe musicians who couldn’t get a gig playing for free at a coffee shop.”


So friggin’ true.

The proof is in the genre of the music at these “young adult” Masses. Genre is like the cultural DNA of music.

What genre even is “Pan de Vida”? “We Come to the Feast”? “Christ Is Our Light”? “Here I Am, Lord”? “Our God Is an Awesome God”? “And He Will Raise You Up on Eagle’s Wings” (or whatever the title of that one is)? I can’t even place them—which just goes to show how culturally out of touch these songs are. The only thing I can think of that remotely resembles these songs is ballad.

By contrast, what are the genres we hear most often nowadays? Personally, I mostly hear alternative rock, pop, and rap, with the occasional 70’s/80’s throwback disco or rock.

Now, does modern Catholic church music sound anything like any of these genres? Of course not. Because it’s not aimed at the people who listen to that kind of music, a.k.a. young adults.

I think probably the biggest lesson I’ve ever learned in life is, “Yes, it really is that simple.” Or rather, the biggest lesson I’ve still only partially learned in life, because I have to re-learn it all the time.

When it comes to composing music, if you can come up with melodies, rhythms, and chord progressions mentally without needing an instrument to hear them on, then yes, composing is just a matter of deciding that the melody will sound like this right here and the accompaniment will sound like this right here.

When it comes to drawing, if your eyes are functional, you can make lines and shading, and you have a sufficient understanding of light, then yes, it’s just a matter of deciding that this line looks like the model so it’s fine, but that line doesn’t look like the model so it needs to be redone, or likewise with shading and color.

When it comes to coding, if you know about variables, scoping, data types, functions, closures, vectors, hash tables, structs, conditional branching, looping, and error handling, then yes, programming is just a matter of deciding that “Yes, the output of this program is what I want it to be” or “No, I want it to output this instead.”

And yet I’m always worrying about whether this or that design choice is “right” or “wrong” in areas where that kind of thinking doesn’t apply.

This is one of several reasons why I think that maybe I should have majored in math rather than comp sci.

I have some on-and-off trouble with scruples, which is a problem recognized in Catholic culture where you keep on feeling like you must have sinned when you haven’t, or like the sins you have committed are mortal when they really aren’t. One of the trains of thought that I always come back to whenever I’m dealing with this is that I’m probably just telling myself that what I did isn’t a mortal sin because I just want to take the easy way out. But then recently it occurred to me…

The right decision is always going to be easier than the scrupulous decision because the scrupulous decision is harsher than it needs to be by definition. So as long as I’m scrupulous, whenever I make the right decision I’m always going to feel like I’m taking the easy way out!!

So I guess that gives me a good diagnostic for when I’m acting scrupulous. If I start worrying about whether I’m taking the easy way out, then I can assume I’m just being scrupulous.

After watching 8-bit Music Theory’s video on nonfunctional harmony in Chrono Trigger, I feel like I finally understand the role of dissonance in composition for the first time.

I went through a pretty long phase where I refused to listen to anything but classical music, so my dad was surprised when I started listening to punk rock and such. But if you look at some of my favorite music from when I was a kid, it’s a pretty natural progression. Here are some of the first songs I remember liking when l was little:

As you can see, I’ve always been fond of fast beats and minor keys. Heck, even my favorite classical pieces are like that:

The horizontal line in this post editor doesn’t always look the same even though the HTML is the same, and it bothers me.


5 thoughts on “Random Thoughts

    • No, because that sounds like a spin-off at best and a rip-off at worst.

      I wanted to name it (the Neopet) “Mega Man,” but that was already taken, naturally. So the site suggested that I add some random numbers to the end of it to ensure the name was unique, and that’s what I did.


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