Today, an unexpected thought started circulating in my head, and unlike the other times that similar thoughts surfaced and promptly went away, today, this particular thought lingered: Do I really want to continue blogging? Or.. do I want to [gasp] stop?
First of all, let me assure y’all upfront, that the probability of me actually stopping – at this particular point in time anyway – is still leaning on the slim side, but the experience that led up to this thought taking a slow walk around my brain was interesting enough that I thought I’d share it with you anyway. Y’know, since aside from those who come here purely for the reviews or the confessions posts, I truly feel like there’re some of you who actually care and are genuinely curious about what’s going on with me.
Thanks for caring and being so sweet, you guys. It means a lot. Really. ❤
This one’s for you.
As I type this, the blog is all of 9 and a half months old, having first come out to greet the world on 12 December 2012. (OH! It was 121212??? How cool is that? And. Why am I only realizing this now??)
So anyway. It’s been 9 and a half months, and what a transformative 9 and a half months it’s been.
I’ve learned a heap from blogging, some of which I never thought I’d learn, ever. Like photo-editing and making banners. And I’ve found that exchanging all my drama thoughts with others can be deeply gratifying, and lots of fun too. Plus, typing up the post itself often is a learning process, coz as I type, new and more interesting thoughts tend to emerge as well, and I love that.
At the same time, I’ve also found myself evolving as a viewer, and part of the reason is the analytical lens that I automatically shift into sharper focus in order to organize my thoughts for a review.
Now I don’t watch an episode of a show I plan to review, if I’m too tired or just want to zone out. Y’know, coz I need my brain to be quite functional if I want to fully appreciate a show and its merits, so that I can attempt to do it justice when it comes time for the review.
And that, I’ve found, is a bit of a double-edged sword.
Hur. Yes, that is my double-edged sword. Metaphorically speaking, of course. I don’t actually write the reviews using a pencil 😉
On the one hand, the review-writing process seems to make certain shows come alive for me, where before they’d been confusing, meh or just plain upsetting (See Chuno). And that is seriously pretty cool. On the other hand, though, this also kills certain shows for me, because they just can’t stand up to the scrutiny. I’m pretty sure that if I attempted to analyze Big now, that it wouldn’t stand a chance. Yet, because I watched Big before starting the blog, I was able to enjoy the Gong Yoo awesome and close both eyes to the flailing plot.
Up till recently, this hasn’t bothered me a whole lot, though it’s given me pause for thought a couple of times.
Then what’s put me in this particularly contemplative mood, you ask?
Well, I finished watching I Hear Your Voice last week, just before an especially hectic weekend. And my practice for a while now, has been to put all other drama watching on hold once I finish watching a drama, so that I can focus on that show and its review. Like, keep my brain in that show’s space, if you will, so that my thoughts and responses are still pretty much in the moment. Or so I like to think, anyway.
This past weekend, though, I had no bandwidth to think or write about IHYV, even though I have some (hopefully) interesting thoughts about it. I was just too physically tired out and mentally drained to even attempt to write.
Instead, all I wanted to do was zone out to a drama where I didn’t have to consider giving it a review. Y’know, like the good ol’ days before I started blogging. Back then, I could zone out to any drama of my heart’s desire, and lap it up any which way, whether my brain was functioning or not.
And my zoning out pick these few days, has been Itazura na Kiss: Love in Tokyo.
It had felt like the obvious pick, for several reasons:
- First, it comes highly recommended. I’d generally heard good things about this one, and Betsy Hp’s recent review had sealed it as a very promising watch.
- Second, I’ve come to appreciate the simple world of Playful Kiss, and I wanted to see how the J-dorama folks had interpreted the same story. Plus, nobody does live manga adaptations like the Japanese, really.
- Third, I’m due to actually spend a chunk of October in Tokyo coz my sister lives there and is about to have a baby. (Yes, I’m about to become an auntie!) I’m going to be in the country, so language immersion is a very valid reason too, no?
- Most importantly, it’s a J-dorama, and I’ve decided that this blog is purely for kdrama reviews. So, no impending review = I can watch this as zoned out as I want, and it won’t matter.
So that’s how I dived in. And boy has it been a surprising experience.
As I write this, I’ve watched 4 episodes of this show, back-to-back. Yes, you read that right. Back-to-back.
After a monster of a weekend, followed by a very early and very busy morning today, I was just too tired to do anything productive, and found myself clicking on the next episode and then the next, all afternoon long.
Suddenly, I remember what a fluffy, frivolous drama marathon tastes like: absolutely delicious, like a guilty-pleasure dessert full of empty calories. Yet, as you indulge in its completely addictive pleasure, you feel completely carefree, because your brain is having such a great time being on vacation as you indulge.
Wow. <– This was the thought on my brain all afternoon long as I indulged.
This was one of the things I’d loved about kdrama in my early addiction days. I used to be able to inhale dramas in really short stretches of time, as if I was flitting from one empty-calorie dessert to another.
And over time, as real-life priorities took over, and then as blogging and writing came into the picture and brainless watches ceased to be a thing for me, I’d completely forgotten the heady feeling of the drama marathon. I’m not talking about those slow marathons that I’ve been doing that can take weeks just for a 16 episoder. No, I’m talking about those drama marathons that last just a few short days as you inhale the entire drama in several quick stretches.
And that’s made me wonder: Do I want to keep blogging? Coz if I don’t blog, I’d have way more of these types of heady, carefree experiences?
It’s an intriguing thought that makes my imagination go into overdrive, trying to picture what that might be like.
It’s a pretty surreal mental picture at the moment, coz I’ve grown very fond of the blog. It’s like my baby, sort of. Plus, on good days when my brain is functioning, I really do enjoy playing with those drama thoughts by crafting them into reviews.
I guess there’s a lot of middle ground to consider too; it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. I’m sure there’s a way to balance it all, to the satisfaction of both sides of my brain, that I just haven’t discovered yet.
For today, though, my brain is tired and the IHYV review will have to wait.
In the meantime, I guess you already know what I’ll be watching more of tonight, as I ponder this existential question some more 😉