April 08, 2008

Ras-a-frassin' @$%#&"! *grumble*

I should have taken the Photoshop class back when I had the chance. This "learn-by-doing" isn't going as well as it did with AutoCAD.

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April 01, 2008

Life, the Universe, etc. ~ Part Deux ~ Now with More FAIL

Boy, almost a month without anything new here. I didn't have a resolution to keep or anything, but I had planned on every few days getting at least something up.

Settling in is settling in.

The box containing a number of my anime DVDs (including my still-wrapped Shingu boxset) appears to be lost/missing/stolen. The first run of bills are rolling in with all the pain of various "setup" fees attached. As much as I would love to run out and spend the money on the various big-ticket items that would really get me up to speed living in the place, small nickel-and-dime items are what has me running to Wal-mart every other day it seems.

The softball team had a mediocre regular season. We finished 8-4, with those 4 losses came in a row during the middle of the season. We're seeded 4th in the Tournament that starts this week.

In a couple weeks comes what amounts to a "softball team" camping trip. I've been looking forward to a little "cold weather" camping, but it's always been difficult getting more than a couple people interested. I'm curious to see how it goes. I need to get a good 0ยบ bag because nothing I've got right now is going to cut it at 7000'.

Shortly therafter comes a wedding to attend. I've got to figure out where my nicer clothes are in this mess. A polo and jeans is not appropriate wedding attire.

Lemme see... lemme see...

Oh, got notice of my ten-year high school reunion in the mail, only to discover they're charging $89 for a ticket. Thanks, but maybe I'll organize a counter-reunion for people not of a mind to waste perfectly good money just to meet people who are rapidly becoming strangers all over again.

Wow. That was bitter. I'm going to blame stress and lack of fresh anime. The winter season has tapered off. I won't even bother with any spring shows until a couple weeks in and some of the chaff has been shaken out.

And to leave off on a disturbing note...

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March 10, 2008

Life, the Universe, etc...

Well, the big move is finally over. Almost. There's still a bit if stuff in the storage room and garage unit at the apartment to haul over, but otherwise, the transfer is complete.

7 hours after work on Friday, 19 hours straight on Saturday, and another 13 hours on Sunday mean I'm dead tired.

In those three days I feel like I've fallen way behind on a lot of things, anime being one of them.

Things don't look likely to let up in the near-term either. I need to get a washer and dryer pronto, and I need to start cleaning up the apartment for moveout inspection. I've heard so many horror stories about renters trying to screw people over on the tiniest things. It's making me a bit neurotic. The vertical blinds on the backdoor of the house need replaced (and I hear tell that the size I need is going to be hard to find). I don't have much in the way of respectable furniture. The more I look at the situation, the more it looks like I'm going to need to do a lot of side-jobs to get this place up and running properly.

Because of the way the schedules fell, I'm actually getting dinged for a full month of overlap between the apartment and the first mortgage payment. It will be interesting to see how bad things really get at the end of this month.

Oh yeah... taxes... gotta get those filed sometime soon. Suddenly that $230 million Powerball drawing on Wednesday is looking real nice.

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February 27, 2008

Baccano! ~ The love-child of Snatch, Pulp Fiction, and the Godfather.

Yeah.. I got nothing at this point... I think I need to go watch that again. This time with lots of notes to keep track of the 45 HOJILLION THINGS GOING ON AT ONCE!!1!!!11eleventy-one!!1!11


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February 20, 2008

God... who knew buying a house and moving would be such a chore?

Well... it's been a long month. Signing is coming up some time next week. I need to get my taxes filed.

But at least I have shows like Minami-ke to keep me sane(?).

There's just so much right in that Nico-Nico... Kana's just loving life and living large... Haruka's a little embarrassed, but otherwise enjoying herself... and Chiaki is completely lost and wondering how she got talked into this little performance.

(This is part of a whole sub-genre of nico-nico videos dedicated to the Swedish caramelldansen.)

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February 07, 2008

On Moe vs. GAR

IKnight has been working on a series of posts laying out the basic concept of GAR, and it got me to thinking about how Moe and GAR in many cases are opposing sides of the same coin.

Things are going to be a bit disjointed, and I'm sure there will be many things that get left out. I'm not writing a thesis here. Hell, I should be working right now. I'm assuming a level of familiarity with current anime characters, but I'm also going to be working from a set of ideas drawn from this essay. Take a minute or 20 to read through it, because I believe somewhere in the metaphor of the sheep, sheepdog and wolf lies a clearer definition of moe and GAR.



Posted in Anime by: Will at 10:18 AM | Comments (9) | Add Comment
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February 05, 2008

Minami-ke ~Okawari Episode 5

Without prior knowledge of the relationship between these three sisters, this episode would probably seem rather strange.

With that said, I spent the better part of this one cackling maniacally at the palpable dread and crescendo of terror and panic Chiaki and Kana experienced as the end drew near. You don't break Haruka-banchou's things and live to tell. Serious-business faces popping up left and right. Fujioka the teddybear-samurai was a bit odd, but what isn't in this show?

It's amazing how much fun a show based on a very simple premise, without any high-tech hardware or magic, can be.

Now for the pictures.

Now that's some horror.



Posted in Anime by: Will at 07:29 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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February 04, 2008

While my credit card gently weeps...

Hokay, so I dropped some change this last week on:

1)Vandread, knowing that further delay could mean never getting it.

2)Shingu, because I'm a sucker for a sci-fi story even if the box art is a less than stellar.

3)Planetes, because hard sci-fi has a place in my library too.


I've got my eye on the Haruhi LE bundle, but I'm holding out to for when Robert gets the Gurren Lagann OST in stock to bundle it all up.

Actually, I'm a couple episodes in to Vandread, but not far enough to give an honest assessment of the plot. Gonzo's been real hit-and-miss with the character designs so far. Characters' proportions swing pretty wildly from one scene to the next.

Posted in Anime by: Will at 02:13 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
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January 28, 2008

So, so jealous...

About a month and a half ago, I linked a Gurren Lagann AMV that made good use of Welcome to the Black Parade by My Chemical Romance. It had a few problems. The timestamp was in most clips, subs showed up in a few places, and there was no footage from the second half of the show. It was obviously a rushed and rough draft.

The following video is not the final draft of that project. It's a MAD (different/Japanese way of saying AMV) done by an entirely different person with clean clips, a longer version of the song, and it includes footage from throughout the series. It's a marvel of editing and craft.

My warning from last time still stands. If you intend to watch Gurren Lagann at some point in the future and hope to get anything out of the experience, don't watch the video inside the spoiler tag.

Posted in Anime by: Will at 04:20 PM | Comments (6) | Add Comment
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January 25, 2008

Parenting Tips for Dealing with your New Baby

The do's and don'ts.

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January 23, 2008

Short snippets

So far I'm really enjoying Spice and Wolf (or Wolf and Spice, or Spicy-Wolf, or whatever). The banter between Lawrence and Horo keeps you paying attention through what would in most shows be simple throwaway scenes.

Rosario + Vampire is sitting firmly on the far side of my fanservice comfort zone. If they insist on keeping this up (and all signs point to "YES"), I'll end up dropping it. It's a shame, really. I find the characters and premise at least entertaining, but the upskirt shots in the third episode are way beyond what I'm going to put up with.

Still keeping up with Kimikiss, and I still think Mao is one of the better female leads I've seen. Sure she likes Kouichi more than as a simple neechan-from-another-mother, but she knows that Yuumi makes him happy and is trying mightily to keep from butting in.

It's nice to see Shana II escape the rom-angst funk it was in for half a season.

Shugo Chara drips so much sugar and cheese it's hard to turn away. It's like a gingerbread trainwreck.

Still waiting on the first DVD of Gurren Lagann to release. I haven't itched this much for a show to hit since... well, ever.

There're a few other shows that I'm keeping up with that either don't deserve comment at this time, or I haven't seen enough to really form an opinion.

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January 15, 2008

Raunchy ringtones

I just got this little video through email at work. The ultra-tall gaijin to the right is a nice touch.

[Update: why did I bother uploading it when I knew damned well I should just check youtube, saves meenu bandwidth]

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January 14, 2008

Band meme

Because I had to put the image up somewhere.

I tried to use a Gothic font, but the crossbars on the t's in "lettered" disappear. Balls.

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January 12, 2008

Six Minutes of Mental Vandalism.

Don't say you weren't warned.

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January 09, 2008

Giving up cold-turkey

About the time I went through two cases in a little less than a week, I knew I had a problem. I couldn't function without it. I felt myself craving it at odd hours of the day, and the effects it normally induced had decreased because of my abuse.

I speak of course about caffeine. Four cans of Pepsi a day might not seem like a lot to some people (I know I'm not anywhere near the addict that some are), but to me it seemed a very unhealthy level of chemical stimulation.

Lunch on Saturday was the last time I had any caffeine. It was no big deal until about 5:30 Sunday afternoon. Usually if I haven't had at least some caffeine by 3:00 pm, I start getting a splitting headache that won't go away until after I go to bed (once the headache sets in, no amount of caffeine or pain-killers will make it go away). But this last weekend something was off. Instead of the normal headache, I just felt really really sluggish. My eyelids weighed a metric ton and my thinking was very foggy.

I decided to take a quick nap, and the next thing I know, it's 9:00 pm and I don't feel one bit better. Nothing felt normal. Quick change into something better for actual sleeping and it's back into bed to shake off whatever's kicking my ass.

2:00 am I'm wide awake and wondering just what the hell is wrong with me. My skull felt like there was an extra 20 psi inside it (but no real pain, just the sensation of pressure)  and at the same time I had the sensation that my eyes were trying to suck back into my head (a sensation I get whenever I get a sever fever and a bit of dehydration).

I check my temp, and it's all normal. So I get a glass of water and wait to fall asleep again. Five minutes later whatever woke me up has passed and I crash again until 7:00 am. My head's still packed with wool and it feels disconnected from the rest of my body. I spend all day Monday at work in this state, but I've already figured out I'm suffering withdrawls (though I can't discount that the strange Sunday afternoon may have been brought on by something else already long gone).

The withdrawl symptoms subsided Monday night, and I've been making a point to avoid anything with caffeine. The bizarre part is that it hasn't really affected my sleep pattern at all. I still wake up and go to bed at the same time. I thought I would at least feel tired earlier, but that hasn't panned out.

I guess I'll keep going with this for now, if only as an experiment.

Posted in Random Debris by: Will at 10:11 PM | Comments (7) | Add Comment
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January 03, 2008

Give me that Olde Time Elegance

Never has an article needed writing more than this one right now. With each new season, it becomes more difficult putting up with borderline pRon to get new programming more interesting than the tripe on American TV.

If this trends continues, there will come a point where I can no longer justify watching anime based purely on moral/legal grounds. Attempting to separate the wheat from chaff just won't provide enough material to make it worth my time.


Posted in Anime by: Will at 08:51 AM | Comments (8) | Add Comment
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December 25, 2007

That Double-A Bridge in Shakugan no Shana

I've been trying to find if the bridge in Misaki City is based on a real bridge in Japan. What made me think of this is it's resemblance to the new Zakim Bunker Hill bridge that is part of the finally-completed Big Dig.

Posted in Anime by: Will at 08:53 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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December 23, 2007

Virtual 3D via Wii

I've never thought I'd have much need of a Wii, but if they ever go somewhere with this guy's little tech-demo, I could definitely see myself buying one in the future.

Posted in Videogames by: Will at 11:15 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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December 18, 2007

It's been a Jet Engine Day Around Here

Redneck Jet Engine

(Though, I don't think it's techincally a proper turbojet without having the compressor linked to a turbine. In this case it looks like compressed air and oil are injected into an automotive turbo. The turbo then feeds compressed air into a burner.)

Here's a micro turbojet for hobby use.

And this one makes me think of those "Wanna get away?" Southwest Airlines ads.

Oh, and at some point I'll have to get myself one of these.

Posted in Random Debris by: Will at 02:20 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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December 12, 2007

An Interesting Visual Effect

Don't worry. It's not one of those stupid "stare at this until a creepy picture and loud noise pop up to scare you" tricks.

 I'm really curious what makes it work. I think it maybe be etching color info into the cones of the retina while somehow not affecting the rods. Then when they switch to a black and white image, your eye continues to over-compensate for a split second, filling in the colors of the image.

I'm reminded of this other optical illusion brought on by color fatigue in the cones of the retina. Stare at the black cross, and watch what happens to the purple dots over time.

Posted in Random Debris by: Will at 01:12 PM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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