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33,333% of your RDI of Sebby
Things I don't hate: Seb and the City :: Jeff's LiveJournal :: Stereolab :: Metric :: Autechre and Friends :: News for Nerds :: Stroke the Algebra :: Good University - Horrible Webpage :: ph33r the Carbogoodness :: Everyone loves Strongbad October 2015
Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Mon, Jun. 4th, 2012 10:55 am


Fingers crossed. This would be the best possible start to my day that I could imagine.


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Fri, May. 4th, 2012 02:30 pm

  1. Has anyone here watched the new HBO show, Girls? I just adore this show, which I think is hilarious, with characters that are so wonderfully quirky and distinct from one another, and much more representative of the current 20somethings than Sex and the City ever was of any generation of women. (SaTC was a fun show that I enjoyed thoroughly, but I never found it particularly realistic in terms of its portrayal of people.)

    I can't believe that only three episodes of Girls have played... I already feel incredibly attached to and invested in the characters, and it's hard to believe that those feelings have developed in such a short space of time, when usually it takes almost a season for me to feel that way.

    It also doesn't hurt that the two most prominently appearing male characters are SUPER FRACKING HOT beyond belief, and in their 20s, thus making me feel much less ephebophilic than my usual perverted self! *does the happy niveau boni dance!*

  2. Do you have a guilty pleasure? If so, what is it? While I absolutely loathe 99% of reality TV (especially American reality TV - I find Australian and New Zealand reality TV much less trashy and almost documentaryesque instead of a drama-rama-rompfest), I am hopelessly addicted to any and all shows about hoarders, the hoardier the better. Nothing says good TV like someone who doesn't know how many cats live in their house, only to find a dessicated leg sticking up from a two foot deep pile of cat feces.

  3. Has anyone here heard of the bullshit that is "Indigo children?" (See Wikipedia.) IMO, an "Indigo child" = a kid with a stupid parent. People believing in this indigo child crap just want to believe that they're special and unique, like everyone else.

  4. Lately, on the day off I take off every week (since we're on a mad dash to finish my PhD, I work six days a week), I love to laze around and read about paranormal stuff (particularly UFOlogy) on Wikipedia. While I am fascinated by some of the stories, I am highly skeptical and believe that 99-100% of them are hoaxes or explainable without having to resort to extraterrestrial influence. I sincerely hope that there are extraterrestrials out there (I can't see how there wouldn't be, based on the size of the visible universe), and I like the idea of having been visited by them, but I strongly believe that if they do exist, it is likely that they would be so dramatically different from us that they would be incomprehensible to each other, and possibly not even recognize each other as life. That being said, the grey aliens from Zeta Reticuli are fun to think about all the same.

  5. Latest video that has creeped me the FUCK out:
    YouTube - Strange "Stick" Creatures Caught by Video Surveillance
    *shivers his timbers*

P.S. - See? I'm not always in the throes of despair despite my vast majority of LiveJournal posts indicating the contrary :D.


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Fri, Apr. 20th, 2012 06:39 pm

What is your pet peeve of the day?

Mine is homeopathy. Naturopathy is cool, and while it's often not very scientifically approached or studied, at least it's possible to be effective. (although I hate when people naturally assume - heh, pardon the pun - that naturopathy is safer than western medicine because it's based on naturally occurring substances. You cannot make that kind of generalization about thousands of chemicals / plants. Nature is quite adept at producing some downright horrifying toxins.)

Homeopathy, though is completely dumb. It's like, "Here's a pill that's been diluted eight billion times so the probability that it contains any of the original substance is about equal to the probability that the universe will have a spontaneous quantum queef and your ass will be full of gold coins. But somehow, it's stronger than the original substance itself. Quack quack quack quack quack."

Don't even get me started on the anti-vaccination people...


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Fri, Apr. 20th, 2012 05:34 pm

When I was in the third grade, we were forced to eat our lunch at our desks, and after 20 minutes or so, we were allowed to go outside to play. The student in front of me, who I will never forget, ate an egg salad sandwich for lunch every day. Why, I do not know, because the sandwich never agreed with his stomach and he would spend the entire afternoon passing gas, more or less right in my face, that reeked of egg salad in various stages of digest. It was so distressing to me to be trapped behind him for three hours every afternoon smelling this over and over again (literally dozens of times), that finally my parents had to step in and speak to the teacher to have my seat moved, as she had been wholly unsympathetic to the pleas of an eight year old. But for about five months, that seat had been my own personal hell. By a rough calculation, I am sure I easily inhaled over a thousand of his eggy expulsions (various puns intended).

I will never, ever be able to eat egg salad, and the mere smell or sight of it is enough to turn my face green, 26 years later.


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Sat, Feb. 11th, 2012 04:16 pm
Seriously, looking back on this LJ, it seems like the only feeling I feel is depression, which is SO not the case. I'm happy most of the time, but for some reason, the only time I feel compelled to post is when I'm down. I'll strive to make some happier posts AFTER today, I promise :D. For now, however:

Having one of 'dem stupid days where although life is going pretty damn swell, I feel absolutely in the deep throes of inconsolable depression and dread, like everything is about to spontaneously go wrong and reality will collapse in upon itself. Yuck.

Because of this, despite the fact that I was eager to get loads of work done today, I am having tremendous trouble getting motivated to do more than put a dent in the TV shows I'm currently watching, when I should be marking assignments and studying Chinese. Grah!

If anyone has an emotional life preserver handy, and / or any spare cyberhugs kicking around, send one my way? It couldn't hurt.


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Sun, Jan. 15th, 2012 06:24 pm

No idea what's wrong with me today, but I feel so depressed that I'm basically dysfunctional... On all accounts, I should theoretically be happy; life is pretty good on most fronts, but for some reason I feel absolutely crushed, devastated, and like a colossal failure on all fronts.

*sigh* I'm not sure if it's a touch of seasonal affective disorder, but I sure as heck would like it to go away.
More than anything, I'm feeling rather unloved (which makes no sense, because I'm fortunate enough to have great friends and family).

If you have any cyberlove / cyber hugs to spare and wouldn't mind sending some my way, they would be very much appreciated.

Current Location: Canada, Ontario, ByWard Market


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Sat, Dec. 3rd, 2011 12:20 am

Super excited! My Chinese language school offers both group classes and private lessons, broken into a number of levels depending on proficiency and experience as follows:

  1. Introductory Chinese, levels 101-104
  2. Intermediate Chinese, levels 201-204
  3. Advanced Chinese, levels 301-304
  4. Breakthrough Chinese, levels 401-405

I started, like most people, with the group classes, since they're pretty inexpensive and a great way to meet new friends that are interested in similar things. However, once I got to level 103, I started getting pretty frustrated with the group classes for several reasons, namely the pace of the class is problematic for almost all students.

Casual students find it incredibly fast paced and overwhelming, and many of them drop out pretty fast. For example, in my 101 class, we started with almost 10 people, and ended with two. Even for the higher levels like 201, where you'd think anyone who made it that far would be pretty committed after four levels already, the class size began with a whopping 12 students and ended with five. It is quite a commitment: the teacher expects you to dedicate about a minimum of 30 minutes per day to study, and if you don't keep it up, it's so easy to fall behind, which makes it even harder to catch up, etc etc etc vicious cycle.

On the other hand, dedicated students are equally troubled: the pace of the class, while still fast, is often too slow for them, and the lack of dedication makes the class slow down (e.g. because students who don't do their homework ask a lot of stupid questions that would have been answered had they done the homework).

Thus, while the content is brilliantly designed to reach a level where you can understand and communicate basic ideas very quickly, there are issues.

The second huge problem is that there is a minimum class size, and at least once, I was incredibly keen to advance to the next level, but due to insufficient students, the class was canceled... and since each "semester" lasts about three months with a one month break afterwards, so that means waiting four months to try again.

Anyways, all of this added up to the point where to make up for lack of class availability and the pace being slow for me, I decided to double-up and enroll in both 104 and 201 at the same time, which was a fun but crazy few months. When that ended, it was summer (where the school takes a few months off anyways), and it looked like 202 might not be offered in the new semester. Unhappy Seb indeed.

That was the motivation I needed to switch to the much more expensive but flexible private lessons, which has been an amazing experience. First off the private lessons instructor is one of the best teachers I've ever had in my life, regardless of subject or level. He's extremely intelligent, patient, helpful, encouraging, and genuinely cares as to your progress. As I'm extremely motivated, he's started giving me the school's textbooks for free, which is a super nice incentive. Also, I can go at any pace I want now, which is extremely motivating

Anyways, the main point of excitement is that next week starts my next block of private lessons... and even better, my transition from intermediate 204 to advanced 301!!! *throws confetti, goats, and the shattered dreams 請Gddapof battered children to the studio audience* I can't wait to jam my hot little hoofies into all that yummy Chinese knowledge!

For now, however, keeping my eyes open is proving to be nearly impossible, so off to bed!

Current Location: Canada, Ontario, ByWard Market


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Wed, Nov. 30th, 2011 04:45 pm

...I know at one time, I had a series of posts in which I was quite frustrated about my relationship - especially with regards to trust, money, and pot smoking, but we've been seeing a truly amazing marriage counselor through Jewish Family Services (we're not Jewish, and I doubt she is although I could be wrong, so I'm not sure how that works), and now we're on a really good track. We've made loads of progress, I've stopped being so authoritarian, and now our relationship is overall very good. We still have stuff to work on, but in that regard, I'm probably the happiest that I've been since we got married.


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Wed, Nov. 30th, 2011 04:41 pm


Jeeesus Christ... looking back on this post, my Chinese has come a long, long way in a short period of time. Sometimes I forget how much I've learned in the last year and get frustrated with how far I am from where I actually want to be (although yesterday I watched a Chinese comedy movie and actually was able to understand most of it, which was a really nice surprise and something my mind was fucking starved for, seeing as my listening is my worst skill as I don't have as many opportunities to practice). Then I see something like this, laugh my ass off, and realize how ridiculous I'm being sometimes. Another year, at this rate, and I should be in really good shape, I think. Then I can diversify and start learning Japanese again!


Sebastian (塞巴斯蒂安) / 饒漢文
Wed, Nov. 30th, 2011 04:29 pm
Must... focus... and start writing 50 minute talk for Friday morning.
*unmotivated pout*