30DDC Day 1: Favourite Incarnation of the Doctor

I should have posted a disclaimer in my announcement earlier that this 30 Days of the Doctor Challenge will only revolve around the new series and not the older ones (’cause I have never seen those). I spent about three months at the end of last year and earlier this year catching up with the new series.

So for my favourite incarnation I will definitely have to discard the earlier Doctors and choose from Eccleston, Tennant and Smith. Here, I’m going to say that all of them were great, in my opinion. To compare them and suggest that one is better than the other is like choosing your favourite child. Each Doctor really enabled the writers to explore different areas of the Doctor’s universe, issues and relationships. But among them, my favourite is (by the skin of his teeth), David Tennant, i.e. The Tenth Doctor.

Why the Tenth?

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‘Cause Tennant allowed for more dramatic and challenging episodes like “Midnight”. He settled into the role as the Doctor as though he were the result of a snake shedding old skin. It seemed natural. The Tenth Doctor was someone you could depend on, despite all the chaos.

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I also preferred his catchphrase, as opposed to “Geronimo!” Geronimo makes it sound like you’re recklessly jumping into something. Meanwhile, “Allonsy” makes it sound like an invitation to an adventure. Albeit each catchphrase is befitting for each Doctor, I prefer the idea of being invited into an adventure in the Tardis, rather than being shoved out a plane with a ticking time bomb.

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I also prefer the Tenth Doctor because of his storyline (though this can’t be helped), he had some of the most iconic alien encounters and adventures. His relationship with Rose, the Bad Wolf, his farewell, the first Weeping Angel, the adipose … each one of these stories is forged together with the image of Tennant.

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And because of all these reasons, because the Tenth Doctor is just filled with amazing “feels”, he is my favourite incarnation of the Doctor.

- Cumuloq <3

Announcement: 30 Days of the Doctor Challenge!

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Since Doctor Who Series 8 will be premiering on the 23 August 2014, 30 days from now, I thought it appropriate that I start and complete a 30 Days of the Doctor Challenge! Unlike the Book and Movie Challenges, they will not be featured on the main bar on my blog, however they will be searchable with the tag “30DDC”. So every day from now I will be completing Doctor-Who-related challenges and sharing in my love of the television series before Peter Capaldi takes the stage!

Unlike the other challenges, I will not be showing the list in advance, however you can check it out (as per usual I’ve borrowed it off of, and would like to credit, Heck Yeah Tumblr Challenges!)

Excited for the new series?

Follow my blog to keep posted on challenge updates!

Cumuloq <3

When You Finish A Book

Came across this little gem while surfing the net, and I thought I’d share it with you:

The truest part here, for me, is where one minute you’re reading and the next minute you’re not. And it sounds really “duh”, but those lines just sum it up perfectly. One minute you’re at a good pace and you are at a good emotional level with the characters and the plot and then you realise the words stop and you’re just holding a book that is no longer speaking to you – it becomes, once more, an inanimate object.

Thank goodness I’m only halfway through Gaiman’s Neverwhere and taking it as slow as possible.

Till next time,

Cumuloq <3

Weekly Update: Jacquie Lee, Little Big Planet and Big Hero 6

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1. Song of the Week: Pretty Hurts Cover by Jacquie Lee

This girl is just amazing; it’s hard to believe that she didn’t win her season of The Voice.

2. LPs of the Week: How Fast can you Fap? (Little Big Planet) by Chilled Chaos

Yes, I did skip “Video of the Week” ’cause I realise that I didn’t really find any outstanding videos this week. I guess when I’m really stressed all I watch are LPs, so here are a few of them. Including this one – which is very risqué, but absolutely hilarious.

and Let’s Play – 7 Days to Die Part 2 by Achievement Hunters

I’m not so sure why, but I’m starting to love this series a lot more than their Minecraft series.

3. Trailer of the Week: Disney’s Big Hero 6

Find the Frozen character somewhere in this trailer. Find it!

Enjoy your weekend!

Cumuloq <3

What I Write and Why I Write

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Currently reading Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (leisurely, I add) and I began to contemplate the function of fantasy and the imagination in writing. If anyone knows me well, you’ll realise that I have the tendency to find patterns and muse upon them – which is probably how I managed my literature degree (as literature is filled with patterns).

So, earlier this week, commuting or otherwise, I questioned “Why is it that protagonists have the habit of encountering or delving into the Fantastical (monsters, witches, wizards, vampires, zombies or otherwise) when they reach crossroads in their lives (puberty, a new home, a new school) or crises (the death of a friend, depression, bullying)?” E.g. Dorothy went to Oz when she attempted to run away from home – which made her realise the value of family and friends and the familiar.

Is the reason for escapism to really escape? Or is it for us to cope and come to terms with reality, to find a way back? And is this then why some people go insane when everything becomes too much? Maybe creating worlds for ourselves makes us feel okay again. And those that slip in the in-between are stronger than we make them out to be. They may be lost – for a while – but getting lost is a way for them to once again be found, and to find new meaning in life.

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So, maybe going insane is just us escaping into our own fantasies (involuntarily) and figuring things out from the darkest depths within our psyche.

This brings me back to a strange time when I was eleven. During that time, I would have considered myself a normal child, but looking back and rereading diary entries from that time, I am both disturbed and fascinated by the way I saw the world back then.

And here I share something quite private with you anonymous readers.

When I was eleven, I recreated the world around me to cope with some unexplainable (I know it’s not a word, but I can’t find another word to substitute it) events in my life. The events themselves are not that important, but the way I recreated the world was – and still somehow is.

I recreated the world such that I had four goddesses in my life (my drawings of them were not unlike fairies, to be honest), and they were my protectors from evil. Whenever I feared anything I just imagined them standing or sitting beside me and comforting me, telling me it is alright. I imagined that they liked to dwell in the trunks of trees and therefore quietly smiled at the trees I passed by while walking to school. It was my version of an inside joke with myself.

But I also imagined terrifying things, like evil whispers outside the window while I was in class that threatened to take my life away from me. I envisioned dark tendrils creeping up at me, lacing themselves with my toes that hung out of my blanket in the middle of the night. The imaginary world of good versus evil became, to me, a simplistic means to control the way life kept moving around me.

And here I return to Neil Gaiman, whose two stories I’ve read (and am reading currently) seem to embody this magical realism. The Ocean At the End of the Lane stands out for more obvious reasons as a parallel to my eleven-year-old self and the world I created back then. As a child I stood at the proverbial cusp of reality and make-believe – so much so that I am unsure whether a childhood friend which I played see-saw with when I was six was real or I just made her up.

When you are six – or even eleven – what actually happened is not as important as how many magical realms you can traverse is – or how many quests you can complete are.

And maybe going back to all of these reasons as to why I saw the world that way back then made me realise the reason as to why I wrote as well. It even explains how I ended up writing on the subject materials I did while I did my poetry modules in uni. I’ve always had a much greater love for fantasy, and therefore saw myself as unable to fit within the literary confines of my domestic market – which are all stories on the society and the people (and the reason why I hated my fiction module ’cause my professor insisted that I write about things that actually exist in society).

I only realise now, and probably too late, that my voice does not exist purely in either realm: fantasy nor reality – but a straddle between the two. And that was what my “literary voice” was trying to tell me when I got into my advanced writing class and began writing a collection of poems about a cardboard girl trapped within her home by the magical (or otherwise) individuals within it.

The way I now see writing is as a means to understand the world around me and likewise slipping into the Fantastical should do the same. The same way that Richard (in Neverwhere) attempts to understand London above via London below, to truly see the world from a new perspective, I hope that the protagonists I write of someday will do the same.

Therefore why I write is not to escape from reality, it is also not to portray reality as it is as close as possible, but instead to show that reality is an unclear boundary between what is and what we hope it will be.

- Cumuloq <3

Weekly Update: Echosmith, RTX 2014, and Mockingjay

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It really has been a while since I’ve written a weekly update on this blog. Since the 30 Day Movie Challenge I haven’t exactly not written here, I have a fair number of occasional posts here and there, but I really have not been keeping with this weekly update – which is funny, ’cause if there were any category I usually post, it’s this one.

It’s honestly been a very busy two weeks in – a lot of other prioritise have eclipsed others. Even this weekend feels short-lived with so many other obligations that my “to watch later” queue on Youtube seems a lot of more crowded than usual. And a project I had in mind to reveal to you guys is also on the back burner. Maybe it is for these reasons that I will be somewhat relieved to be a student once more in two week’s time.

But for now, some videos:

1. Song of the Weeks: Terminal by Echosmith

Honestly, all I’ve been listening to lately is Echosmith.

2. Videos of the Weeks: Youtube Whispers 3 by ThatcherJoe

All of these should be watched honestly, Joe comes up with some of the best game ideas.

and The Duet by Glen Keane

I was absolutely mesmerised by this Disney short. Watched it probably five times already. Agreed, it’s the most cliched thing, but the artwork and music make up for it.

and What If Google Was A Guy (Part 3) by CollegeHumor

I think this is my favourite one out of all three – it really is hilariously relatable and I’m so glad they put in that Siri joke.

3. LPs of the Weeks: DoA Xtreme 2 HELENA!!! Part 5 by Game Grumps

Okay, first don’t judge for the DoA – I understand it is all about boobs and volleyball – but hear me out. Also, yeah I should put up part one, but you can probably find that yourself. But this is my favourite ’cause of Arin. Arin is so bent on being volleyball partners with Helena that it is absolutely hilarious as he desperately tries to claim her affections – and Danny being dragged along for this madness is the icing on the cake.

and ChilledChaos’ MARIO KART RAGE

I think this is the epitome of what Mario Kart is like. So it’s here for that. Plus I love how the rest of the Derp Crew uploads all the rounds, but Chilled feels a need to summarise his emotions into one montage of absolute Kart Rage.

4. Trailer of the Weeks: Mockingjay Part One Panem Address #2

I think, if there were any Hunger Game movie I’m looking forward to, it’s this last installment(s). ‘Cause after Catching Fire I finally took the time to read the trilogy, so this is the first of the films where I’ve actually read the book before watching the movie. I’m interested to see how many of the events in the book turn out.

Last but not least, I hope you guys have been having a great weekend!

And till next time,

cumuloq <3

How Much Better is Silence

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The above is a quote by one of my favourite writers, Virginia Woolf (from The Waves) and I thought I’d share it with you lovely people because I feel she understands so well what reading, as a pastime is like.

It’s meant to be a beautiful escape, and Woolf is so palpably aware of a need for this sensitivity towards wanting to sometimes separate ourselves from moments of our lives – or even moments of ourselves; the parts that are monotone, and the parts that are New York minutes, craving caffeine, elbowing through masses of strangers in public transport, speed-reading through documents and deadlines, can wait. Sometimes we just need to be reminded of us.

Sometimes we need to prioritise time and space for silence.

So, therefore, for all these reasons, I present this quote.

- Cumuloq <3