Yes, as the subject implies, I suspect that I'm currently under the delightful effects of what I can only call a midlife crisis.

For one reason or another, these last few days have been filled with my nostalgic recollections of a "happier time", and I've spent much of my time looking up old friends and seeking out persons who had once provided me with a considerably degree of amusement. Sadly, however, over the last ten years it seems that alot of the people I knew have vanished, many without a trace or clue for me to follow. I sometimes now have a fantasy of wandering around where I last knew they were, hoping maybe to catch a glimpse of them at the corner of my eye, holding out a hand in a friendly salute to let them know that I'm sorry for not being there all this time, but that I am now. For that reason, I think I'm going to spend a little time down south to see if any of the old writers I worked with are still residing there. I have few hopes, but at the very least a long car ride sounds pleasantly peaceful.

Other than people, I have begun to look over dreams I once had. As I mentioned earlier in this journal, I have always closely associated writing and drawing. As a young boy, I was trained in drawing more than anything, studied under my grandfather who was a fairly well-known local artist in Japan. Over time, however, I think I began to lose my enjoyment of such a precious skill and chose to try and pursue a musical talent (which failed fairly quickly after a debut in sports shattered my fingers and left me with the swollen digits I have today), and then, finally, to the art of writing. Somewhere, some years ago, I had hoped to put my writing and drawing together to form one of those animated flash videos that were all the rage in newgrounds and nico nico, and youtube, and albinoblacksheep, and whatever websites now come to mind. The only problem for me back then was that I possessed utterly no money to my name, and a $70+ adobe program seemed a hilariously impossible thing to own. Now, however, with some proper savings and a respectable enough job under my belt, as well as the lovely training by my mother to spot a sale, I found a rather cheap adobe flash program for only $30.

It was strange. While I usually think over purchases and try and make sure I knew what I was doing with what I bought, I just plucked the damn thing off the shelf and took it to checkout with me. I honestly don't think I really looked at it until I got home, at which point I was sort of like, "Oh well isn't that something? I always wanted to be a flash artist!"

Of course, I feel like over time, the internet has aged enough with me that the great flash artist is no longer the plucky and amateur-dominated field it used to be. At one point, it reached a zenith where it seemed like virtually everyone with an inkling of knowledge in adobe flash produced something to clog the internet, and now it seems only the lifers still produce anything (and even then, they are more promotional for the main products, since those young boys and girls are now men and women with a job to feed them. Hell, even writing in the amateur scene feels like that now, though I didn't stick around anywhere long enough for my name to be recognized. Not that fame is ever the bottom line for me, no, but I admit that there is a certain charming feeling to being recognized for a bit of work. Though I suppose that popularity comes with it a certain double-sided blade: most of my personal friends (and I do mean friends, I was not merely a fan - they didn't have a fanbase back when I liked them, and our talks were far more personal than any conversation between fan-and-idol) seemed to have disappeared due to the negative effects of being well known. Hatedom, it seems, chased away a large number of my old companions, while the opposite (read: stalkers) ran off a great many others to abandon the internet completely.

It's a shame, really. I really wouldn't mind being called out of the blue to see one of my esteemed friends for a cup of tea and a warm conversation. Nowadays, I feel like the only proper way to measure your life is to count how many lifelong friends you still have.