bambooXZX's personal blog, mostly dedicated to song lyrics translation from Japanese to English.

[Blogpost] no more grand proclamations [2018-02-24]


Normally, upon coming back to this blog after a hiatus, I would tend to write an apology for silence followed by a rough outline of future plans, but I’ve long since realized that when such a thing is actually necessary, it means I’m not really in the right condition to actually hold myself to those plans. So, this time, I shall let my rehab float along with whichever way the river flows. For now I’ll just write little bits and pieces, as a sort of pump-priming, and then see if anything comes of it.

Way back when I actually did things, did any of you get baited into following my Twitter account for updates? If you did, first of all, I’m so sorry – if you haven’t unfollowed me already, you’ll know that for the past few years, the quality of my communications there has degraded drastically. Do note that this was not an unconscious shift – somewhere along the way I made the decision to treat it as a sort of vent for ideas that have no better place to escape, partially because it just felt right at the time, partially because the format lends itself well to that purpose.

On Twitter, I will largely type without proper English formatting – usually no capitals to begin my sentences, no periods to end then, many run-on sentences with missing commas. Maybe the practice isn’t so uncommon, given the nature of Twitter and the internet in general these days, but I’ll have you know, waaaay back when I was in high school, when online conversations were just starting to become a thing for teenagers, I was That One Guy who always insisted on using proper English – all the capitals, punctuation including semicolons, no acronyms like ‘lol’, no emotes, and so on. My discipline toward these chats degraded gradually – adoption of the acronyms, removing overly obvious punctuation, commas as verbal pauses and semicolon substitutes, splitting my sentences / into many lines / as I crystallize ideas in my head / for greater clarity – until I eventually got to the habits that I carried over to my current Twitter behavior.

As this went on, though, ‘degradation’ seems to have become less and less clean as a description for what I’m doing. Kind of consciously, kind of naturally, a lot of the things I do either came about as or morphed into a simulation of tics I have when I talk in person. I really don’t know how much of this subtlety gets through to the people I’m talking to, but the observations I’ve made regarding myself are funny enough to me that I feel less bad about my decline, at least. For example, I consider the shortage of capitals and periods my “informal” tone, and I like to think that it gives me the option to shift back to proper English when I’m being serious and need that tone to stand out. I once had a strong distaste for the use of commas where a semicolon or a new sentence would be more correct, but at this point, I do it anyway because it sometimes feels more natural, more reflective of the way people actually talk.

Even my use of acronyms has mutated – I use different slang for laughter for different vocal tones.
-‘lol’ is the most neutral, more like a grin than laughter
-‘lmao’ or ‘lmfao’ is strong, genuine laughter
-‘lmbo’, a particular corruption that originated from a longtime troll in public chats, has become my choice for “I’m not actually laughing”
-‘lmboo’, an even further corruption by a friend who integrated the same troll’s ‘lmbo’ into his own vocabulary differently than I did, flips around to become genuine laughter in his manner.

Now, I’m sure none of this is anything revolutionary, but I haven’t written text this long in years and I need to fill in something to feel like a real human being again.
No, that’s not the real “but”. :V
The real “but”, the real reason I think this isn’t 100% off-topic on my blog, is that this shapes some of my views on translation, even. I’ve noticed in the past, occasionally, that some translators tunnelvision on what seems correct by the books, but sometimes great things can come out of conscious decisions to break the syntactical rules of English, because those deviations can be utilized for specific purposes. Identifying the deviations that I find myself using can provide unexpected insight into things that I might be able to use later on.

Even more broadly, I place high value on attention to detail, and peering into everyday things, like this, helps me keep my eyes open.

Well, about 780 words. I used to write this much on almost a weekly basis, so I guess this is a decent start. Still as bad as ever at wrapping up neatly and keeping sentences succinct, though. :V

If all goes well, this won’t be my last post of the year. Approaching bedtime at 5AM is actually an improvement over my usual state, so I’ll leave things here today, but I don’t even care if no one reads this, this was time well spent.


3 thoughts on “[Blogpost] no more grand proclamations [2018-02-24]

  1. It been a while since your last post on blog, but I was glad that you are doing fine. I still checking your blog few times each week to see if there is any translation song that I loves. Life is hard and work keep you busy with. It is good to take it off and relax to relieve stress. Thank you for running blog and this kind of translation in years. I made my first request at your blog in 2010. 8 years flies fast for sure. 2018 just come and I wish it bring to you and your families best and lucky thing. Once again, I and many people really appreciated your helps on translation ! ^_^


  2. Well, i think that the translations are fine so… no problem with that. xD
    Wish you luck with future projects and works in this blog.
    btw, I would love if you check songs from Spangle Call Lilli Line, it’s actually a very good band with a lot of potential in their lyrics.

    Good luck man.

  3. I use twitter only on the occasion and sometimes not for months so. ¯\_( ツ )_/¯

    I started following you because I think you are the best lyrics translator I have ever seen and the first thing I do when I look for lyrics is “did bambooxzx translate that?”. I also frequently come back here when I want to reread some of the lyrics for SFP.
    I don’t know what it is in lyrics that is capturing me so much. I guess I like to reflect onto songs and the interplay between song and words. When it clicks and I see myself in the reflection I feel shivers down my spine. I learned a lot about myself this way.

    I am not good at japanese and english is not my mother tongue but through your words you convey how much thought you put into your work and how much you want to do it right. I think you are extremely good at hitting the sweet spot and capturing the soul of a song.

    I think giving advice is almost never a good thing, as people usually know of their faults and they would do it better if they knew how… Having said that: I think routines (and by enlarge micro-routines) is key to leading a productive live for most people. For me it did wonders to just stand up at the same time every morning but njeh, you’ll figure it out if it is even a problem for you.

    I really would like to do something with you at some point in my live, be it programming or just contracting your for a translation or something. You are awesome. :)



Leave a Reply to McWhite Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s