Friday, August 11, 2017

Change One Thing

There's something I've missed terribly the past year or two:  Japanese TV Dramas (also called JDoramas).  Most of the sites where they are uploaded are really risky--viruses, browser intruders, and worse.  When the last safe site I knew went bust, I gave up.  But I missed my JDoramas so much!

A few weeks back, I was searching online for something else that led me on the trail to finding a drama site that wasn't hugely dangerous.  Oh, the ads are still awful (incredibly, unbelievably vulgar) but not hard to navigate around.  And I have been having absolutely the very best time filling myself up with good shows, good movies, good feelings.  It's happiness X 10.  Really!

What is so different from American TV? 
  • It's not all violence and gore for one thing.  Yes, there are crime dramas and such but you're not gonna have to feast on blood and guts.
  • Shows do not drag on for endless years.  JDoramas nearly all have limited runs:  one season only.  Most have between 9 and 11 episodes, and that tells the complete story from beginning to end.  Thus, the stories are more compressed, more full, more meaningful--you don't have to wait forever for them to play out.
  • Most importantly, they are about relationships--not just love relationships but about how people interact with one another--with friends, with family, with acquaintances.  JDoramas acknowledge that people need one another, that we influence each others' lives in so many ways, that each of us is responsible for encouraging and sometimes directing one another.
Do I speak Japanese?  Nope.  I have no talent for learning languages.  But I have plenty of patience with subtitles--I thank my youthful addiction to silent movies for that.

Here's the thing that draws me back to JDoramas over and over again:  it's the stuff that no one ever taught me about being a good human being, about being a proper adult, about being a good friend.  It's good to be learning even at this very late date.  American TV shows (of which I have watched an infinite number over the course of my life), by and large, have taught me almost nothing of lasting value.  JDoramas teach me stuff that sticks with me in my daily life, stuff that I really need.

I've always kept a notebook of which JDoramas I've watched (mainly because I get confused by Japanese titles).  Now I'm starting another notebook; this one is gonna be full of the many good things that I learn.

One of the shows I'm watching is called Reverse.  It's about a group of four people who, ten years after the incident, still feel remorse and shame about the death of a friend.  Now a shadowy someone is accusing them of murder, and the threats are beginning to de-rail each of their lives.  Are they guilty?  What really happened?  There's something that has never been told.

It's a good show.  Worth watching.  Tense.  And everything hinges on the interaction of the various characters. 

But what I'm thinking of today is what one character (the one who has died) says (and I'm paraphrasing here)--that if you want things to be different, you don't have to change everything; you just have to begin with one thing like sharing a laugh with a friend or having a really good cup of coffee.

Great advice, don't you think?  This morning I made a pot of coffee instead of a mug of tea.  And I relished in this small change.  I used my old school stove top percolator--it's fun watching the liquid bubble up and turn dark brown in the glass knob at the top.  And this afternoon, I think I'll get in touch with a friend I haven't heard from in several days; maybe we can share a laugh.

Always remember that you are influenced by the things that you choose to fill your time.  These are what will color your heart and flavor your tomorrows.

Life is good.

It's up to us to make it sweet.

.....(If you wanna try watching JDoramas [and you really, really should!], I will be glad to share the site link [and even recommend some incredible things to watch] but you will have to ask because the ads are really foul and I don't condone them so I don't wanna send anyone there unprepared and I sure don't want to advertise for them in any way.)

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