Monday, May 2, 2022

New Direction - The Writer Rambles

 It's been a long time since I've updated this space.  There are many reasons why I stepped away from writing this blog, but it essentially all boils down to I wasn't having a good time.  It just became a huge hassle trying to stay on top of new releases and finding something to say that wasn't some regurgitation of what every other person was saying just proved difficult.   I couldn't stand the way my photography was turning out; the more I tried, the worse it seemed to look to me.  This endeavor took more and more of my time, and it just wasn't fun. The toll on my mood and mental health was just too much for me, so I just stopped.

Roughly two years ago, the itch returned for creating new content for the blog.  I even had an idea on what I wanted to do!  I have four children, ranging in age from 16 through 7.  My youngest son, 7, is just full of questions, and always has been.  One of his favorite pastimes is asking me questions about figures in my collection, followed a close second with questions about my life growing up.  If there's one thing that I can do, it's talk about myself.

So, with a new direction, and renewed energy, this blog should be easy to write, right?  That's what I thought, but then a severe case of writer's block hit me.  How severe?  Well, I've been working on writing this one entry for the last year, so fairly severe. Luckily, a confluence of factors led to the proverbial floodgates opening.

It's funny when you think about things like your own identity.  I know who I am, right?  The answer to that question proved to be a lot harder to answer than I initially thought.  After all, I'm just some dude that likes toys and talking about himself.  But, the more I thought about how I wanted to approach this site, and how I wanted to talk to my children about what my life was like, the more difficulty I seemed to be having.  

For those of you who don't know, I'm half Filipino, and half white.  Before you form a picture in your mind, my parentage is the opposite of what you have in mind.  My dad is Filipino, and was in the US Navy for 20 years.  He came to the US by joining the military during the Vietnam War, and he met my white mother after living here for a few years.  

Growing up, I knew that I wasn't like the rest of my friends, who were for the most part, white or black.  My dad was raised in the Philippines with the dream of coming to America already drilled into his head by his father.  My dad was given American comic books, listened to American music, all that kind of stuff.  Sure, he had a thick accent, but he was pretty damn American by the time he hit these shores.  And because he was groomed to be American, his kids were going to be, certainly.  As a result, I didn't know any other Asian kids.  My dad made sure I only knew English.  Hell, I remember having to get my mom to tell me what dad told me because I couldn't understand his accent.  I pretty much just thought of myself as a white kid.  As I grew older, that started to change because I was getting all of the fun questions like "What are you?" or "Where are you from?"

Being a kid that moved a lot (Navy brat), I leaned into stereotypes and made light of my Filipino heritage to make friends and gain acceptance.  Sure, every once in awhile, I'd get irritated and strike back at whatever stupid racist joke someone was trying to throw my way, but for the most part, I just took it.  But with age, comes a semblance of self-assurance. What really helped my sense of self was just talking to my children, especially my 13 year old daughter.  She's so self assured as to who she is and proudly Asian, even if she's only 1/4 Filipino.  The kid is so inspiring in that regard.  

Something else that's helped my immensely in rediscovering my love of Transformers and not just in hoarding things is becoming more active in the Transformer fandom.  Facebook, and all of the "fan" groups there really drove me away from interacting with others.  Know what rekindled that?  Twitter, of all places.  I find Twitter to be an incredible place to meet like-minded fans.  Without those interactions over the last two years or so, I probably wouldn't have even thought about doing this blog again.

This has been quite a rambling opening statement, so I'll get to the point about what this blog is now going to be about.  Simply put, it's going to be me discussing a figure, or figures, and talking about that period of my life.  The hope is that after I'm long gone, my children will have this repository of my gook stories to show their children what their grandfather was like and what he dealt with in his life.  If this is something that you think you might be interested in, welcome aboard!  Doesn't sound like a good idea to you?  Thanks for stopping by anyway.  Let's see how this fares.

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