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How 2 B AzN

Wed Jan 12, 2005, 1:49 AM
Be forewarned, this is a long ramble of a foolish fool. I may think myself wise at the moment, but who knows what I might believe in tommorow...

I'm certain this in not a new topic, but I certainly have feel I fresh perspective depsite not having mentioned much ado to the topic to friends online or off.

Among the number of people I run into on a daily basis, there are a great number of people who envy eastern culture and some how wish against fate that they could be Asian.

This sorta thing may or may not sound silly, but it's a fact that there are plenty of you out there.

I guess the first thing I can point out about asian people is that being asian is TO NOT INVEST SO MUCH INTO IT. I mean if you were asian, it's not something that occupies you regularly, afterall, it's been that way all you life. In fact, the ones out there who are asian and constantly remind people of it are seen as by regular asians, as a whitey. Not to confuse this with "asian pride" it more the person who'll easily get offended when appropriate measures aren't taken to ensure that they're appreciated for their culture. I.E. a certain asian guy I know who insists on carrying a bo-ken everywhere he goes.

Afterall, how would you feel if I liked america so much that I were to wear a cowboy hat and spurs? Message to the anime-loving white people who consistently stalk asian people and insist on wearing asian characters on their clothing whether or not they know what it means. If you were truly asian, it's something more subtle, and acheived by a way of life and not the obvious labels that you've encountered.

The most asian white people I know are the ones who don't even know it, and if they're told so, it's not taken very seriously, because they are who they are.

It's not impossible after to be culturally accepted. Some of my best friends are asian because they:

Don't hate pop music, but that doesn't nescessarily mean they like it either.

Don't outwardly proclaim their dislike for a certain movie, music genre, videogame, sport, person, type of person.

Aren't overly preoccupied with freedom (freedom is overrated and at the same time underappreciated, especially when you believe it's a right you're born with and not something you earn.)


I have this theory that Americans are very "anti" people. As in you are who you are because of what you don't like not for what you are. Apparently disliking things builds character.

Not to down on americans or anything, this is merely the topic of americans who aspire to be asian and are doing a horrible job of it.

where was I?

Ok, a good example of the cultural difference, would be the type of games I've seen released recently.

Let's compare Bioware's Fable against long running Final Fantasy

The first thing Fable wanted to establish was freedom, freedom to do anything, become anything, go anywhere, etc. etc. It's currently called sandbox play. It's a aspect of american games that they pride in very much. Some other examples would be Halo, GTA, KOTOR.

The downside about that sort is that given that amount of freedom, most people will abuse it. Spend hours with hookers in GTA and then mass murdering people with enevitable weapon codes.

In Fable/KOTOR, the main character could not have his own voice because it would simply take too much time to record all the possible dialogue due the the freedom of being able to say anything you want.

A japanese game would simply not succeed that way. Final Fantasy and the generic RPG of 12 years or so emphasize more important than freedom is being part of a great story. So much that they'll sacrifice freedom. SOmething people should understand in real life.

WHich would you choose?

Stepping over the rules in the hopes of becoming Great.

Or Giving up freedom and being part of something Great.

That pretty much the difference between asian people and americans. Asians a community based. It's a part of life for us to conform. Conformity is not a bad thing, it's only bad if you don't understand it.

bleh... I'm sick of this topic already. I'm not even that much asian myself. Asian people don't like me.

Oh another thing:

Asian people generally lack character, that doesn't nescesarrily mean the'yre boring. Well, maybe it does. But it's just not so important to have something to say. Which for that reason we tend to look alike. Go ahead and try to have a deep conversationg with one. You'll hit a wall eventually, I garaunteeee..

I guess that'd be one reason I'm not so asian, they think I'm weird.
But I do have that neutral thing going for me tho, I've gotten very good at coming up with the most neutral comments possible to entertain conversation whenever someone comes up to me and wants to talk about what they hate.

  • Listening to: Gotta get thru this
  • Reading: nothing
  • Watching: SHaun of the dead
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:iconoptimum-mediocrity:
optimum-mediocrity Featured By Owner May 26, 2007
(My name isn't Schrodinger)
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:iconoptimum-mediocrity:
optimum-mediocrity Featured By Owner May 26, 2007
This crapily concocted tale is actually a history of the world. The 1st planet was east Asia, the 2nd was Europe-western Asia-North Africa, and the third planet were the forgotten children (a.k.a North and South America). As you can see, Eurpeanish people have always been cruel, competitive, looking for the way to best their competitors, and steal from the east. It is a survival instinct. Back then, if you didn't do that you would be dead and replacement with a less co-operative group of people. While Asians had to work together to maintain their civilization and conform to make sure that there were little amounts of arguments.
old habits die hard.

This is not to say that Asia had no wars within itself. Just that white people had more.

Also if you look at the broad trends of history you will see that all the major ancient cultures were separated by areas of sparse population (mountains, deserts, oceans, vast rain forests,etc.)The Boxers, the Huns, the Mongols, the Russians, the Japanese, the Maians, the Incas, Plains Natives, Native Australians, the Europeans, and those people in Africa whose name escapes me at the time all were separated by an aforementioned obstacle. Just some had more than others (europe with all those mountains and such).

That should explain pretty much everything you need to know about why things are the way they are. If not just follow this simple rule: People who are separate enough to not be able to have a stable rule over them but are together enough to exchange ideas and technologies are the ones who are going to pwn because they have to be better, not just for an academic exercise, but for survival.

If you want to learn more useless information please don't hesitate to give me a "devious" (lol) comment.

ps. I'll tell you why I think life is sooooooo funny on sooooooo many different levels later. Peace... for now mortals muhahahahahahaha!(evil maniacal laughter)

"And cut."

"How was it?"

"I don't know."

"Oh please tell me. You don't have to be sarcastic."

" I wasn't. I don't know what you were talking about so I have no answer."

"Oh... Do you think I should stop flaunting my superior training in logic and problem solving?"

"YES!! For the love of god please do."

" Wow. That really derailed my self esteem train."

"Good. Then the people on this site might get some. Fuckin' emos."

"Shhhh (stage whisper). They'll hear you."

"Who?"

"They, them."

"They? them? Who the hell are you talking about?"

" The people on the third planet."

Old-time Radio Announcer: Next week we find out if anyone really cares about opinion. Will planets 2 and 3 have a sexy dance scene? Will planet one take over the world? Tune in next time for more Tales of Schrodinger's Cat.
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:iconoptimum-mediocrity:
optimum-mediocrity Featured By Owner May 26, 2007
A Tale of Two Planets

Once there were two planets. One of the planets had many inhabitants that all lived close together with no barriers between each other. The other had fewer inhabitants who were more spread out and had many barriers. The inhabitants of both planets were the same accept that they had slightly differing faces and colouration.

The inhabitants of the first planet learned to work and co-operate with one another because they had few barriers between them and had a more constant contact to each other. The inhabitants of the second planet did not learn. They had too many obstacles and to little people to cross them. As a result the people of the 1st planet became centralized under constant leadership and had many years of peace and technological advancement. The people of the second planet were always decentralized and therefore did not have the same stability, technological advancement, or cultural progression of the 1st one. This in turn caused the 2nd planet to have constant war between rival factions.

Every once and a while one of the factions on the 2nd planet gained enough power to control the others and temporarily cause them to have an era of technological innovation and cultural expansion. But eventually the second planet would grow tired of banding together and would go back to its state of constant warfare.

Eventually the 1st planet became too cohesive and started to lose its pace. But this was good because everyone was happy. No body doubted that they had it better than the other planet of which they were only dimly aware.

The 2nd planet had always gotten (through trade) the technologies of the 1st planet and used them to kill each other. Any faction that didn’t use these imported technologies was subsequently killed and replaced with a more competitive one. That is not to say that the 2nd planet had none of its own innovations.

As the 2nd planet continued this constant cycle of death and replacement the 1st planet continued to stagnate and eventually gave up its advancement because it was seen as too much and stifled their only chance to expand. And everyone on the first planet was happy because they knew that this was right.

Eventually a bunch of the factions on the 2nd planet were tired of getting the technology of the 1st planet through their neighbors and decided to get a more direct trade route to the 1st planet. Those factions did not find what they were looking for and instead found a third planet with other inhabitants that were less advanced technologically. Then the inhabitants of the 2nd planet then started to exploit the inhabitants of the 3rd planet for resources to kill each other back on the 2nd planet. The inhabitants on the second planet who didn’t get to the third planet were crushed by the ones that did and did not survive long past the first invasion.


While all this was happening the 1st planet had stopped its production because it endangered the conformity they had developed over the years. They were content with their peace and did not want to disturb it.

Ultimately the people of the 2nd planet found the people of the 1st planet and opened tentative trade routes with them. This led to the invasion the first planet by the second planet and led to the 2nd planet’s domination over the first planet. As per usual the inhabitants of the 2nd planet killed each other with fresh supplies from the 1st planet.
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:iconanen:
Anen Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2005
I agree with all that has been said here.
I am an Australian living in Sydney, and although I have a culture of my own, I can't help but cringe whenever anyone says "G'day" in an attempt to be Australian. I love my country, but it seems as though Australians have always been heavily influenced by every other culture out there. I'm sure that there is something that other people can recognise as being inherently Australian, but as Australians we don't recognise it. Instead we have this image of the Outback stockman, or the Crocodile Dundee-esque person, living in the bush, that we try to identify something with, even though people living in each of Australia's capital cities are the exact opposite.

I think that there are many different levels to freedom. You can be free in your own home, free in your mind... Freedom in an American sense, I think, generally refers to a type of physical freedom, a freedom to 'do' things.
What I mean is if you can recognise your boundaries you can be free to work within them.

I have often seen t-shirts with asian characters on them, but I would only buy them if I knew what they meant. I mean, if it meant something like "I'm an idiot" and I didn't know that, it would look stupid. I recognise that most people see the characters as very beautiful, creative and mysterious, but there is an ignorance involved in buying something without knowing it's meaning.
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2005  Professional Filmographer
Free to work within them... hmmm, I'm rather used to the idea of Americans constantly trying to Break boundaries, you know keep it fresh, exciting new. I often think of the two most overused words here these days being freedom and confidence. Freedom because of everything we've all discussed here, confidence for justifying being caught up in your own vanity.

I never though much of australia to be honest, I know to stay away from the croc hunter sterotypes, I think americans find that sort of person entertaining the same way the japanese find some americans, good for a laugh.
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:iconskyeyes:
SkyEyes Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2005  Hobbyist Photographer
This is an interesting thread. I broadly agree with you on the general differences between asian and American cultures, particularly on the issue of conformity. Americans tend to follow the ideal of the individual superstar, that one individual through hard work, talent, and acheivement can become great. Contast that to asian cultures, such as the Japanese feeling that the 'nail that sticks up gets hammered'. What I did want to touch on, however, is my experience with americans caught in this sort of asian envy you describe.

I had to laugh when you suggested the concept of running in cowboy boots and spurs. Living where I do, I occasionaly come across an 'asian Elvis', generally a middle age Chinese man dressed in the attire of singer Elvis Presley. I had never thought about it, but that must be what Americans must look like to asians when the American has over done it. A very large part of why they do it, in my experience, is actually that effort to be an individual. To be different from the rest. This is particularly true of younger people and teenagers who have not had time to experience the individual sucesses to seperate them out, and thus begin to be different in other ways. When I was much younger, that meant blue eyes and blond hair. It can also occur because many yougner americans do not understand their own parent cultures. For example, my forefathers are of Irish, Spanish, and Italian decent, and I am a fourth generation American. Much of asian culture is so different from american culture, that a little bit can go a long way. The same rationale can be applied in what you have witnessed in Americans being "anti" people. By being against something that is mainstream, such as 'pop' music singers, they are breaking from the herd, from the conformity of the majority. It is another reason why many speak in comparitive terms about their job, car, home, kids. It can be insecure out on your own. But we are a culture of indepedants and independence.

I do wish to differentiate those from individuals such as myself, who you might call an asian appreciator. I appreciate and value the differences of asian cultures. I particularly enjoy studying the Japanese culture, and will be the first to admit that I know very little about the other different cultures that exist, such as those in Thailand, Vietnam, and the Phillipeans; other than there are no stereotypes that can cover all that is asian. That doesn't mean that I seek to be Japanese. I feel similarly about other cultures, especially one of my root cultures, Italian. I cook Italian a lot, speak Italian a little, enjoy reading their history, and am planning my second trip to Italy in the fall. I am very proud to be an American, but I did not feel that way until I had matured and traveled to understand the difference. Being such a large country, it is unusual to encounter non-americans if you do not live in one of the multicultural cities or a site of tourism. When I traveled, even to close countries such as Mexico and Canada, I then grasped that I was the one who was different.

A moment perhaps on 'freedom' mentioned in an earlier thread. Many countires have far fewer restrictions on alcohol and drug use, what constitutes lewdness, and permitted levels of enforecement by the government. So where is the freedom in America? The freedom is in that we, me and other citizens of America, decided upon all of those restrictions. We control the government. We make these determinations both nationally and by specific localities we refer to as states. We do this directly by vote and by elected representative. Two illustrative examples. Fifty years ago, restrictions on alcohol use far less restrictive and marajuana use was legal. Alcohol restrictions were increased by public vote until a broader national policy was created, and marajuana use was outlawed by vote of public representatives. The definition of lewdness however, is moving in the other direction, and a couple of our states now even permit gay marriage. Because the citizenry is involved in all of these decisions, there are passionate opinions on both sides of every issue. Discontent is a precursor to change here. To an outsider, we may sound like a disgruntled bunch as a result. Please understand, that is just the sound of us exercising our freedom.
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2005  Professional Filmographer
Hehe, I'm reminded of Bruce Lee. In his day martial artists from all around would come to him and ask him to teach them to fight like him. He would try to tell them to find their own way that, to be unique. And still people took it as saying "you should be unique LIKE ME." Only a few people actually got it.

Well, I wonder now how free are americans? Apparently not much compared to other countries. Perhaps it is because Americans think so highly of it that it loses its value. Earning it or not earning, it seems to be the last thing we go to when we (americans) think about how much better off we are than in perhaps Cambodia (my decent) But then again, I only know how free americans are by how loudly they mention it. Apparently I'm very wrong about freedom. But perhaps my point still stands on the perception of how americans value it. Nonetheless those are good points indeed.
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:iconaleks-kun:
Aleks-kun Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2005  Hobbyist Photographer
I like your reasoning using the game industry as an anchor point. And actually I have to fully agree with you in this matter.

Having a japanese girlfriend and staying in Japan several times, I could see, feel and sometimes even get used a bit to the japanese (or much more generalized: asian) way of thinking, behaving and reasoning. Japanese culture and social life is a lot about harmony and no offense. Western is about discussion, bullying and elbows up.

Stereotypes get strong this time, with the successful crusade of well chosen and adapted asian culture bits 'n' pieces. For example Anime and Manga styles, including T-Shirt and Chinese Kanji Tattoos. Lots of people, I guess, don't understand the message or behavior of characters in Animes or Mangas (and I won't exclude myself here). They don't get the "School-Uniform" thing, or why Heros in general die in stories. (good example for dying Heros is the Final Fantasy Series)

The less they understand, the more they show, how much fan they really are. Blubber japanese phrases out of context, or tell you how much they watched and what they did. And, honestly, I was a bit like the same when I was young. But everything changed years ago, when I started stayed with my gf.

I don't know much about americans people behaviour... I would just blah out some stereotypes here, which are commonly known. But I would never categorize asians as lacking character. Asians don't talk much about themselves, true. They just don't want to be in the middle of a discussion. After years of knowing them, you can come across their true selves. And I have to admit, that from the people I have met in Japan, I was astonished, how my first impression, and my impression now differ so strikingly. How they open up more and more towards me, like a flower blooming.
Americans tend to be more surfaced, they can talk easily about all sorts of things, but know nothing. They tell you what they have, what they earn and how much gasoline their car uses, just to impress. American people have freedom? Show me. I just read that cheaters in America's Army (Recruiting game for the US Army) will be prosecuted by the FBI and have to fear a prison sentence up to LIFE-TIME! Not allowed to smoke or drink a beer in public. In some states not allowed to show physical contact with your girlfriend, or "worse", gay friend. I guess there are hundreds of examples for a free country, which lives in it's illusion of ultimate freedom, not recognizing how less they already have. But this is clearly not your journals topic.

Anyway.

I stopped trying to be an asian years ago, as I never can be even close to being one. I just try to learn from them, being modesty and more calm and supportive to others. Something I watched closely when staying with my girlfriend. The last thing of imposing is my nickname here. But as long as she calls me like that, it will remain.
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2005  Professional Filmographer
The long responses are always the best ones...

I geuss we can agree that we generally agree. I don't typically seek out people who share my oppinions, but at the same time it's nice to know I'm not alone. I guess any further discussion on the said topic will just be more of us reinforcing our already self established ideas. I try to practice not being so rock solid in my beliefs.

But I'll tell you one thing, I get a feeling that some of the best Eastern stories are about a foreigner who brings a fresh oppinion to a working, well established people. (Tidus in ffx)

(btw I of course only speculate cause I can only point out 2 japanese stories of the top of my head that fit in that category.)

such, from what I can tell, applies to you and some of my closest friends. :)
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:iconkeystone045:
keystone045 Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Hobbyist General Artist
hmmm (another thoughtful one)

I have never cared for the way the majority (generalizing again, sorry) of Americans want thier freedom but they don't mind loosing it at the airport for security, or loosing it when Barnes and Nobel bannes awesome photographers just because thier subject happens to be the controversial subject of young children. Not to get off on that...

But, people I run into lately seem to be far above the stereotype, but when you hear of the stupidity that goes on. I think Americans are turning into big babies... If the electricity went out because a huge solar flare that did the thermomaganetic thing to all the microprocessors in the world... Would the majority of American's know how to survive..... No, now think about that real good! ;)

All we talk about anymore is the economy and gas and stuff. Most cars wouldn't run (except the one's that every body wants to crush because they're not 'green enough') and our economy is totally run by computer, so that would be completely gone!

Just some food for thought... Not sure how it relates to your journal though! :ROFL:
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Professional Filmographer
hehehe, my mind tends to wander a lot too.
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:iconkeystone045:
keystone045 Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Hobbyist General Artist
:ROFL: I'm real bad about it...

(Line from Murder by Death) - 'Where's the bathroom? Sometimes I talk so much I forget to go.'
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:iconb0x0rz:
b0x0rz Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005
a fresh way of thinking. what you said is mostly true. but this only applies to the working class and the average people.
i had the good fortune of interacting with some great minds of the west and the east (in great minds i don't mean einstein or sun tzu, etc...) but average smarter-than-most people. this is where the racial diferences fail to hold their ground. the only problem is that there are not THAT MANY people that can fit in the smarter-than-most category and hence your conclusions are correct when based from your point of view. as much as asian people would consider the average west person uncivilized. globalisation failed as it brought people together but did not bother to befrend them. :b0x0rz:
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Professional Filmographer
I had the fortune of growing up among very smart americans as well. In some ways I consider them more asian than me.

My speculation is based, like you said, on the unfortunate common populace.

Not that I have anything against people who have no idea.

I look for people wh, like you, think twice.
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:iconb0x0rz:
b0x0rz Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005
I look for people wh, like you, think twice.
:worship: thnx :blushes:
i love that in people too. :b0x0rz:
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:iconxswtxgrlx:
xSwtxGrlx Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005
Well I like what you wrote, even though some people might find it offensive, I dont know hehe I'm not exactly Asian or American^^

But the idea of what you are saying sounds about very right.

Jeanett
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Professional Filmographer
When you called my house the other day and my dad handed me the phone he said,

"sounds like some chinese girl"
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:iconxswtxgrlx:
xSwtxGrlx Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2005
haha!

Well its not the first time I have been mistaken for an asian.
Not sure how tho....
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Professional Filmographer
Phew I was afraid I was being offensive

I think the most important question americans need to ask themselves is what is their/our freedom costing other people? Because it sure as hell isnt free, and were sure as hell not paying for it yet.

BTW what are you doing up so late?

I like that we can talk seriously, tho Im sure Im being this way simply because its pretty late into my day and Im getting cooky.

Speaking of generalizing, I think that worst thing that everyone does, online or off is put people into boxes, characterizations partly due to our imbued personality. For example, I have this image of you as this hockey pokey, cutesy anime girl. But for all I know when the screen is off you could be this sexy diva. Part of me wants to be surprised.

oh well, time for me to go home (im' at work)

:hug:
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:iconblameshiori:
blameshiori Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005
Hmm.
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Professional Filmographer
is that a bad hm or a thoughtful hm?
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:iconblameshiori:
blameshiori Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005
A thoughtful one.

What we usually consider Asian isn't always apparent in every Asian... but ehh, it's hard to talk about this subject matter without having to generalize.

Am I considered Asian? Is what I do considered Asian, or is it considered courtesy?

Is Asian culture courteous, or is being courteous Asian?
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:iconmontyoum:
montyoum Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005  Professional Filmographer
(wrong box)

Phew I was afraid I was being offensive

I think the most important question americans need to ask themselves is what is their/our freedom costing other people? Because it sure as hell isnt free, and were sure as hell not paying for it yet.

BTW what are you doing up so late?

I like that we can talk seriously, tho Im sure Im being this way simply because its pretty late into my day and Im getting cooky.

Speaking of generalizing, I think that worst thing that everyone does, online or off is put people into boxes, characterizations partly due to our imbued personality. For example, I have this image of you as this hockey pokey, cutesy anime girl. But for all I know when the screen is off you could be this sexy diva. Part of me wants to be surprised.

oh well, time for me to go home (im' at work)
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:iconblameshiori:
blameshiori Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2005
I'm up late because I can't sleep.

...ah, well, most people find me to be a serious person and that I'm way too serious for my own good sometimes. It's interesting that you don't see me the same way.
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