There it is. Title: "Once Whole."
Any and all comments/critiques are welcome.
Regarding the Flash Fiction Marathon (which is still ongoing, btw--enter here or vote here), I'm excited to see such a large influx of entries for this contest. Over 20 in just the first round! Go BZP library-folks.
Also, 'tis (edit: 'twas) my birthday. Thanks for the well-wishings people.
The reasons for why I was 'gone' include (first and foremost) an interstate move; before that, a major increase in college work (finishing a thesis is harrrd; also, presenting papers at an international linguistics conference is both fun and terrifying), ultimately leading up to (dun dun dun!) graduating with my Master of Arts in Linguistics. You may now address me as Master.
Now, on to the PhD!
But wait, no. I forgot--I'm taking a break from school for a year. Wow, this is different. Free time...at least until I find another decent job. Whew...
Yeah, so that's what's going on with me. I's back.
There's always a point in the data gathering stage of a project where you feel like you're slogging through a swamp of figures and numbers and words. And it all seems so meaningless.
That's about where I'm at with my Thesis. It's a corpus analysis of Old English syntax, meaning that I have a corpus (basically a massive computerized collection of texts) which I must search and parse out using an incredibly (and I say again--incredibly) clunky querying interface, looking for specific syntactic structures to support one theoretical model or another. Do you feel my pain yet?
And this is just for the base figures, for crying out loud (not that I have...)! Haven't even gotten to the interesting stuff. That'll come once the groundwork's done, and I can actually start looking for what I want to look at.
But until then, that's the status of my Christmas break. No, not really. I'm making it look worse than it is. But I'll stop now regardless. I need to get away from this computer-thing on my desk for a while...It's starting to look at me funny.
Today is Thanksgiving, and I was trying to think up something to post that would be somehow related to that event. In doing the aforementioned thinking-up, I remembered that two years ago wasn't just any Thanksgiving--it was also the announcement of Bionicle's end. Hmmm, didn't I write something about that before? Yeah, yeah I did, and it still seems appropriate now. So here it is again, from 2009's Thanksgiving-related entry, All Things Come to an End:
As a fan who was there at the beginning, who watched the dawn of Bionicle and reveled in its mythic light, I can say that I am fully satisfied as it comes to an end. Bionicle has had a long and excellent run, and its tenth anniversary is a fitting time to bring things to a close. I look back over the entirety of the universe that Lego has created for us, and I can say that all the little things that irked me in the past cannot shine as bright as the things that enthralled and inspired me.
There was a time when I spent a great deal of effort and energy raging against the great problems and failures and mistakes that I perceived in the storyline of Bionicle. It bugged me. I wrote books of mental criticism in my head about how the storyline should have happened, how it could have been done better, how the magic of the first years of Bionicle could have been preserved! But no! The story team was too callous--they didn't listen. It was all ruined, and I had to just move on.
But as time passed, I realized that all these things that had built up ultimately did not matter. They didn't take away from the underlying themes that drew me to Bionicle and kept me there. In fact, they were mostly all superficial, and even if they were a part of the "official" storyline, they didn't have to be a part of my imagination. That is what has kept me an avid fan for nearly a decade--the fact that, as a fan, I don't have to follow the canon absolutely. This is a pretty simplistic idea, that one can simply ignore those elements of the storyline that one dislikes. But the thing that truly brought this home to me was the realization that the "foundations" of Bionicle that I love were not touched by these "bad things", even if I don't ignore them.
The themes are still there. The same themes of Good vs. Evil, the same cosmic struggle of powers, the same inner struggle within an individual: to give in to the flawed evil within us all, or to follow Morality.
And, most importantly: the struggle to regain the good that was lost through deception. The Toa strive to awaken their Great Spirit and return their microscosmic universe to its original, if flawed, state and purpose, while in the macrocosmic universe Mata Nui must ultimately seek to repair Paradise: Spherus Magna.
What is the reason for pointing out these things? Perhaps simply to illustrate why I am not one of those fans who will inevitably say "Oh, I'm glad it's finally over." Those who have been jaded by all the "problems" that they perceive. Honestly, I've seen enough of that tripe written here, and it annoys me to no end. As if the people who say such things are so high up on their pedestals as to look down on the thing that they enjoyed so immensely in the past and say "Good riddance!" Really? Is that really what you want? How pathetic. What is your motivation? I don't deny that there are certainly missed opportunities galore in the Bionicle storyline, but these pale in comparison to the bigger picture.
But enough of that. The real reason for this entry was to look back over the entire body of the Bionicle storyline and remember all the aspects that attracted me at the beginning, and to marvel at how I will remember the good far longer than any of the bad. It is remarkable that the truly mythological elements--that mysterious atmosphere that drew me and so many other fans to the line in the first place--is ultimately preserved if one goes over the storyline in summary form, perhaps because that feeling was never actually gone. I suppose it's also fitting, then that this announcement (and thus, this entry) comes at Thanksgiving.
Thanks, Bionicle. Thanks for a decade of memories. I'm glad I'm still here, here at the end of all things...
...Sorry, I just couldn't resist.
Thanks (!) for reading. I know I know, re-quoting an old entry is pretty much the laziest thing ever, but I think it works here. And I still have a lot of important eating to do, so I couldn't spend that much time on this. We good? Good.
"Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a blog-hole, and that means comfort."
A Short Bio of the...Author?
=ll=The author of this blog currently resides in the rather dry, bare, sandy climate of the southwest United States. He is currently taking a break from school, having completed an M.A. in English Linguistics, and looks forward to starting a PhD. in the near future.
His primary interests include such -ologies as mythology, philology, etymology, syntax, and phonology, along with a healthy passion for historical linguistics binding all these bewildering fields together. Some less academic hobbies include reading classical literature and mythology, high and epic fantasy, science fiction, and the occasional Tolkien biography, as well as attempting (and mostly failing) to write fiction modeled after these genres. His taste in music ranges from classical arrangements to modern film scores (especially when there is not much difference between the two).
In addition to these things, he also harbors the deep-set enjoyment of the Bionicle sets and storyline essential to any hapless LEGO geek who has made the decision to become a member of the BZPower community. Without it, he obviously wouldn't be here writing this, and you wouldn't be reading it. This fact is, in part, what inspired his lasting interest in the art of pixeling, a skill that he apparently isn't all that bad at, although you might never know it, seeing as his severe lack of motivation and excess of procrastination usually prevents him from producing anything much at all.
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Learning Matoran: Lesson 8Eranok - Apr 25 2013 11:40 AM
Meaningless Names - Before continuing...Velox - Apr 23 2013 03:46 PM
Meaningless Names - Before continuing...Roablin - Apr 17 2013 12:43 AM
Meaningless Names - Before continuing...Bundalings - Apr 17 2013 12:29 AM
Learning Matoran: Lesson 8Matt5327 - Apr 13 2013 12:19 AM
= Some Writings =
Unknowledge [Review] - (Epic) Finalist in Epics Contest #7: Murder Mysteries. Unknowledge centers around the mysterious death of Toa Moihu and ensuing investigation by Toa Ros, interwoven with the quest to uncover the reality behind the dark nature of the Dedh-See Scroll. Ultimately, the truth that Ros discovers and is forced to confront may be darker than anyone could have imagined.
Judgement [Review] - (Epic) Judgement opens with a death sentence pronounced upon Toa Jor, watch-Toa of Metru Nui. It then follows the events leading up to this shocking scene, with the arrival of Toa Jovan, bearing grave news concerning the fate of the universe itself, as well as a plan to stop it.
Windows Through the Void [Review] - (Epic) Windows is a serial inspired by the old online serials of Bioniclestory.com. Serial 1 follows Takanuva, Toa of Light, as he journeys across the void to a world of dark trees and night, only to find that he must accomplish another task before his original quest can be completed.
The Time - (SS) A semi-mythic account of the origin of Avan, the first Matoran, in the Time Before Time--the Time of the Great Beings.
Despair - (SS) 1st Place winner of the 2010 Library Summer Olympics (SS category). "Despair" is a prequel to the epic Unknowledge, beginning with the arrival of a mysterious Toa in the city of Moa, deep within the Waste. His motives are unknown, as the nature of the dark Kanohi he wears. But the subsequent arrival of Toa Ros soon sets things in motion, leading up to an epic confrontation between hope and despair.
Dust - (SS) The Dark Hunter Devastator returns to Karzahni, his native land. He must find the Matoran called the Builder and retrieve a stolen tablet, but along the way his encounters with the crazed, broken Matoran and the dreaded Karzahni himself provide him with a sliver of new perspective in this land of dust and living death.
A Storm is Coming - (SS) Entrant in the (now stalled) Lesovikk's Hiatus contest. It tells the tale of Toa Lesovikk's three-day battle with a Rock Lion in a strange land where it never rains and the encounter he has there with the castaway Toa Jovan. Can Lesovikk find the strength to finish his task, or will the memories of his past defeat him? A storm is about to break.
Remember [Archive] - (SS) The Mountains of the Matoran are a strange place, but even stranger are the discoveries to be made within them. Two Agori venture deep into the heart of the mountains, and soon their plight becomes a struggle for survival as they try to escape the strange corridors of this dark place. But at the end of their journey lies a revelation more shocking than they could ever have imagined.
The Coming of the Toa - (SS) 3rd place Judges' Choice winner of Short Stories Contest #8. A glimpse into an alternate history of Bionicle, where something has gone terribly wrong. Kua seeks to discover what it is that the Matoran have lost, the darkness in their past. But can even he resist the power of the darkness that lies beneath?
The End - (SS) Nga-Ro has waited for so long in the darkness and cold of the ruined city. He has forgotten much. But now...even he must find the strength to resist the darkness of death and remember his duty. For the end has come...
The Sight - (SS) 1st place winner in the 2012 Flash Fiction Marathon (Visions Category).
The Power - (SS) 1st place winner of the 2012 Library Summer Olympics: Artistic Gymnastics Reimagine (Bionicle category).
Once Whole - (SS)
Hue #1471 - (SS)
Looming - (SS)
Static [Review] - (Co-authored Epic, OTC) Gold medalist in the 2012 Library Summer Olympics: Epics Unlimited Prompt Relay. Co-authored with Grant-Sud Rises, Velox, and Legolover-361.
Ever Up - (SS, OTC)
Long Day - (SS, OTC)
Beyond the Ridge of Tears - (SS, OTC)
The Trumpet Sounds - (SS, Blog)
- short story
- matoran language
- the end
- Language and Etymology
- a great menace of despair
- content block update
- the hobbit
- the dark knight rises
- And if this entry gets no comments I suppose the next survey will be about posting in blogs
- Short Stories Contest 8
- these tags are so awesome
- new years
- pathetic art
- unspeakable awesomeness
- be here all week
- story bios
- peace on earth
- ah sweet memory
- once whole
- And we're back.