TWO DAYS, TWO JOB INTERVIEWS? WHAT'S GOING ON HERE?
The Zellers job interview was so much more uneventful than my group job interview at Chapters a couple of weeks ago
, an entry that, evidently, someone who must works at Chapters/Indigo in Toronto (using the business-oriented service provider Q9 Networks
) must really, really like, because he (or she) kept on coming back to that very entry a whole bunch of times. Not that I think writing about the interview here cost me the job, since I didn't notice these hits until at least a week after the time period in which I could reasonably expect a call-back was over. (By the way, Chapters head office guy, before you put me on some "Do not hire, EVER!" shit-list, I should point out that, when I entitled the piece "Fear and Loathing in the Kanata Centrum", there was no actual "fear" nor was there much "loathing"; I was just being pretentious and comparing myself to the slightly-shotgunned
"Gonzo" journalist, Hunter S. Thompson
Nothing much happened that I could mine for either comedic value or at least a semi-interesting anecdote. I walked to Zellers via the Quick Drop slot at Blockbuster, because Millions
was already a day late and I didn't want to make two trips to Merivale and, if I had gone to Zellers first with the DVD case with all the security stickers inside, the anti-shoplifting detectors would have sounded the alarm, which isn't the sort of entrance I really wanted to make for a job interview. I was a few minutes late, but it was no big deal as they were a half-hour behind schedule with the interviews, so I waited at the customer service counter for a while and then waited in the break room until I was finally led into the main office for an interview. It wasn't an intimidating one (unlike the Wal-Mart incident where the guy almost came across as a bully during the interview itself), basically just a guy asking me questions straight from a piece of paper, which was fairly impersonal with little back-and-forth going on, just me talking and him writing, but maybe that's the point of it. Most of the questions were of the "name an time that you..." variety; due to a total lack of work experience and not much volunteer experience either, I pretty much had to scrape back nearly a decade (the time when I was briefly an English tutor at Dawson College to a girl who was mostly uninterested) and even over a decade (the time I helped my father with a phone bank to give passwords for this anti-copying venture some other guy started that went nowhere). Damn, next time a job interviewer asks me that question, maybe I will talk about writing a blog and drawing; I mean, I don't get paid to write this, and I write all this for the benefit of the three or four people in the world who come to this blog for reasons other than to get that "Scooby Doo meets Love Hina" picture. Technically, it should count as volunteering. Then there was a second interviewer, who asked me general questions about things like teamwork. I was asked to name attributes of a good leader, and I said things like he should be firm, but not intimidating, and that he should be a fair arbiter, and should promote cohesion within the unit, trying to ensure that everyone gets along to the best of his ability. Also, when asked why I wanted to work at Zellers, I gave a honest answer: beacause it's within walking distance of my house, so I don't have to worry about buses or whether I have transportation.
They gave me the usual line that they'll get back to me on Monday or Tuesday, but they're talking to many other people for the job. I always feel that's code for "Many other people who we like much better than you", but I'll wait and see. I can't pretend that stocking shelves is my number one choice of occupation at this time of night, but it's a 9-to-5 (except it's 9 in the evening to 5 in the morning) job, so I'd be bringing in a fair amount of money. And, if I get this job, I'd still be able to go to the anime club on Saturdays even if I work Saturday nights. I'd just leave the club around 8 p.m., take the 86 bus straight to Merivale, have supper at Wendy's or McDonald's (if I have time), and go to work. And I'd get to bed only an hour or two later than I usually get to bed anyway, due to my chronic insomnia.
Friday afternoon, I did get a surprise... someone called from the Pinecrest Michaels: The Arts and Crafts Store
wondering if I was interested in an interview. I told them that I was, anytime the next week, but they were wondering if I wanted one that very afternoon. Since I just had a job interview an hour before, I don't think I could have handled another one (and I didn't have a lift since my mother is working now), but they said Saturday afternoon was fine too, so I'll be going towards there tomorrow (technically today, but I haven't gone to bed yet). What's the first thing I'd do if I got a job at Michaels? Get them to put a damn apostrophe in their store name, to indicate a possessive (the store that, at some point in history, belonged to someone named "Michael"). Come to think of it, that's also what I'd try to do if I got a job at Zellers.
In other news, I had the physical check-up at long, long last. I had originally made the appointment in long ago March or April, and it was originally set for July, but they pushed it back to November for no apparent reason. Not much to say other than, in Quebec, I don't remember them doing a urine check as part of a routine physical. And it was at 2:30 p.m., and, at that time of day, I'm usually like Doctor Venture in the Venture Bros.
episode, "Ice Station Impossible"
and as dry as a desert. Just not much in my system at that point. I had to really squeeze to get maybe 20 ml out. But it was enough. Basically, except for my weight, I got a total clean bill of health.
On the way back home, I stopped by the Comic Book Shoppe on Merivale and Clyde, and I spent all the remaining money I had on me and in my account on the first volume of the Ah My Goddess! TV series
. It includes episode five, and, even at episode five, they still haven't even finished bringing up plot points that are all from the first volume of a thirty-plus volume manga. I mean, I wanted a telling of the story that was a little less "compressed" than the OVA series, where very little was based on events from the manga anyway, but now it's going to the other extreme, stretching out the story much too much. Honestly, once they get to the temple, not all that much important really happens in the first volume of the manga, which was really an unfocused "practice" volume where Kosuke Fujishima was uncertain where to take the story he had just started. All the important plot points from the first volume could easily have been compressed into two episodes, maximum. There's much too much "padding". But I'm still happy to have the DVD and I know things pick up once Urd arrives.
I also popped in a resumé to the Comic Book Shoppe while I was there, since I saw that they were hiring. Now, if there was any job I'm well-suited for, it's that. At least for the anime department. Haven't heard back from them. Maybe if enough people click this link, they'll notice this blog on their referrer logs.
PIERRE BERNARD'S RECLINER OF RAGE
("Let's face it, folks. There's a lot of anger in America today.")
After almost four months since his Justice League action figure rant
, Late Night with Conan O'Brien
graphic designer, Pierre Bernard, returns with another rant on an issue of vital concern to several other Americans.
This time, I was able to get the VCR to the proper channel quickly, so I didn't miss any part of the segment itself, only part of Conan's lead-in introduction to the segment. Here's the transcript.
Conan O'Brien: Pierre says he knows how America feels and he's ready to articulate our anger for us, and he thought he might as well be comfortable while he does it. So here he is in a little segment we like to call, "Pierre Bernard's Recliner of Rage"!
Singer: Pierre Bernard's Recliner of Rage!
Conan: Hey there, Pierre, are you comfortable and angry?
Pierre Bernard: (reclining in chair) Comfortable and furious, Conan!
Conan: Then go ahead and speak for America, Pierre!
Pierre: Okay, here goes.
My job here at Late Night keeps me quite busy and doesn't allow me much free time to see (garbled) see my girlfriend, Claire, or catch up on my backlog of sci-fi and Japanese anime programs. I also don't have a lot of time to do my chores that need doing, most importantly, laundry. Growing up as a kid, I was always told to make sure you have clean underwear on. I've adhered to that principle, but laundering my underwear cuts substantially into my free time.
Then it occurred to me: what if I purchased a month's worth of underwear? That way, I could go a whole month without doing laundry.
I immediately went to Wal-Mart and bought several packages of Fruit-of-the-Loom underpants. I bought so many that the woman at the register asked if I was opening a men's store.
But the problem began once I got home and opened my first package. It seemed that the Fruit-of-the-Loom had modified their sizes. I usually wear a medium, but the medium no longer fit right. The waistband had been made a little bigger.
Deeply frustrated, I went back and purchased the smaller size. Now the waist was perfect, but the leg and crotch were too small. The fly wouldn't even stay closed. Needless to say, that could result in an embarassing situation in a doctor's office or a YMCA locker room.
I guess, since people these days are fatter, Fruit-of-the-Loom must have modified their sizes to accomodate them. I know there are other brands out there like Hanes, Jockey, and Champion, but I tried them in the past and they never felt right. I grew up wearing Fruit-of-the-Loom, and it annoys me to no end that they would play around with the sizes.
(Adjusts chair upright and points to the camera.)
Bottom line, America? Fruit-of-the-Loom should stop modifying their sizes, and fat people should lose weight so I can find good-fitting underpants.
(Audience laughs and applauses.)
Conan: Thanks a lot, Pierre. You- ah- you eloquently voiced the concerns of at least two or three other people in this country.
Pierre: (adjusting chair back to recline again) Stay strong, my brothers.
Conan: Alright, Pierre Bernard, everybody.
Singer: Pierre Bernard's Recliner of Rage!
Conan: We'll, ah, we'll take a break. When we come back, Neil Young is here. Stick around!
You know, while I enjoy writing these transcripts, if I get the job at Zellers for which I have the interview tomorrow, it's overnight (stocking and such), so I'll either have to tape Late Night with Conan O'Brien
or watch the rebroadcast the following evening on CNBC and write the transcript then.
By the way, Pierre, if you still read this blog, it's not just Conan who is popular in Finland. The other day, I got several hits from Finland within the span of a few minutes specifically for you. (Conan's somewhat infamous over there for his resemblance to (the female) Finnish President Tarja Halonen
This isn't totally unexpected, however, since I noticed that you are almost an exact doppelganger of Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen
Isn't the resemblance so obvious? Okay, maybe not. The fact that you both wear glasses just kinda threw me off. :P
Labels: Pierre Bernard's Recliner of Rage
Eh, I didn't really do anything special for Hallowe'en this year. I needed a haircut anyway, and I really was intimidated by the prospect of handing out candy to children I don't already know, so I decided to walk over to Merivale to get a haircut at Friendly Cuts at Zellers, and then, since I was on Merivale anyway, hand out a few resumés for potential holiday-season employment.
I had a slightly embarassing experience at Friendly Cuts. See, it's a barbershop where at least half the actual hair technicians, or whatever the proper term is, are Korean-Canadian, since, for whatever reason, Nepean seems to have one of the biggest Korean communities in Canada. (I've mentioned at least once before that Sideways
and Grey's Anatomy
actress Sandra Oh
was born here.) Not that the ethnicity of who cuts my hair is at all an issue to me, I go to the barbershop inside Zellers because it's the closest one to my house and it's cheap, but, certainly, as someone who is admittedly at least partially Asianophile, I will confess that I am not exactly averse to having a Korean-Canadian woman cut my hair. Anyhow, the woman I got this time wasn't one I had noticed before; she seemed to be a few years younger than me and spoke English fluently. I like the way that I'm telling this story so far, but here comes the embarassing part. To keep my resumés flat, I put them in a binder, and, since I'm me, I put them in my favourite binder of all, my handdrawn Fushigi Yugi binder featuring Miaka and Yui
, which I drew in 1998, and it's been well-used but still in presentable condition. As I was sitting down, I put down my binder on the counter. She noticed, and she asked me if I liked Sailor Moon
, and I pointed out that it was Fushigi Yugi
and not Sailor Moon
, and then she started talking to me more about anime, asking me which series I like and telling me that she's a big fan of Marmalade Boy
and Hana Yori Dango
. Yes, I eventually did admit that I had the first three seasons of Sailor Moon
subtitled and intact. You'd think that this is all going well for me, and you could be right, but, here's my dilemma. I'm 31, I still live with my parents, and, while I'm not quite Hurley from Lost
, I'm not in the best of physical shape, I admit. I fit many aspects of the stereotypical nerd quite well as it is; should I really have advertised that I am somewhat of an anime fan as well? On the other hand, I suppose, it's not like I would have had a chance to semi-chat with her if I hadn't brought it, though it certainly wasn't my intention to spark that kind of discussion. I just prefer carrying it around to carrying around a blank binder.
I did tip her a generous $6, though, asking for only $2 out of $20 back so I could get a drink (which I never actually got around to getting... damn, now I feel bad not giving her the entire $20).
After that, I decided to submit one of the resumés I had to Zellers and I filled out one of their red application forms and submitted it. They had an overnight stocking position or two available. And... I got a call back on Wednesday afternoon to have an interview on Friday!
Then I walked over to Toys R' Us, submitted a CV there, checked out Best Buy to see if they had Ah My Goddess!
TV volume 1 in, but they didn't, crossed the street to go to Merivale Mall to get a roll of film that I took in suburban Ottawa on my birthday in October, 2002, developed (pictures that would weirdly foreshadow what would happen in my life a little over two years later, though it was more the South Keys/Uplands area and not Nepean), walked back to both Best Buy and Future Shop to see if they'd take my CV, but they told me to apply online. It was getting late, so I returned home.
Surprisingly, even though it wasn't raining, we had only recieved around 25 sets of kids or so, so we still have a tonne of candy left over. Am I eating some of it? You betcha! But I might save a lot of it, put on my make-in-five-minutes Thnikkaman
costume (sunglasses + orange sweater + piece of paper with "TH" written on it in red marker, stuck on the sweater with masking tape) and hand it out at the upcoming AC Cubed anime convention
to anyone who asks me "Hey, Thinkkaman, can we have some?"
("Thanks, Thnikkaman!" Yeah... shut up, kid! "There goes the Thnikkaman!")
Instead of my usual Hallowe'en viewing of Lifeforce
and the original Dawn of the Dead
, I watched the rest of Batman Begins
. It was... decent. Not as "emo" as I had feared (certainly not as "emo" as the second half of Revenge of the Sith
). As a film, I thought it was about on par with The Hulk
. I still prefer the admittedly far less "realistic" and much more hyper-stlyized Tim Burton Batman
films, since I simply don't want too much realism in movies about a billionaire who dresses up as a bat to fight bad guys. I gave a few thoughts in my Rotten Tomatoes journal
, though it's not even close to being a complete review.EDIT:
By the way, I know there are Tim Burton detractors who claim that it's the Burton Batman
films that are the ones that "emo" goths like, but I never got that vibe from the films myself. They're just action movies with a hefty dose of dark comedy. The real "emo" kiddies watch The Crow
RANDOM HALLOWE'EN WACKINESS!
As of the time of this writing (around 1:45 p.m. EST), the Brothers Chaps have yet to put up their annual Hallowe'en toon at Homestar Runner
, so, to tide you over, check out this Flickr album from "cakeyvoice" that features Dawn of the Dead characters, human and zombie alike, made from yarn
Isn't it amazing the sorts of things that Dawn of the Dead
fans with too much time on their hands can create? (Oh, wait, I shouldn't exactly talk
... well, that was only a few hours
Also, this Hallowe'en is a bit bittersweet for me since, as of later this evening, it will now have been a full year since I last travelled to downtown Montreal
. I can't believe all of the things which I used to do often several times a week that I haven't done in 365 days, like ride on the Metro, navigate all of the familar twists and turns of Montreal's underground city, eat a Big Mac at the Central Station McDonald's, ride the long escalator up to the theatres at the Famous Players Paramount cinema
, browse for anime DVDs at Metro Video, DVD Passion (which, apparently, has closed since I moved... coincidence?), the big-ass HMV at the corner of Peel and Sainte Catherine's, browse for French language manga at Renaud-Bray, Archambault, and the downtown Montreal Chapters, savour the autumn colors on Mount Royal (usually viewed from street level), gaze in the window to see what's happening at MusiquePlus, and take the commuter train from Windsor/Lucien L'Allier station directly to Pincourt or call my mother from Lionel-Groulx Metro station to come and pick me up from the 211 bus from either Sainte Anne de Bellevue
or Pointe-Claire (not that I don't think that the Ottawa buses coming within about 50 metres or so of my new home is a major improvement over the status quo in Pincourt, which didn't have any sort of bus service, just the train).
In November and December 2004, the only trips I took to Montreal island were to the suburbs only.
6TEEN FANS, TAKE NOTE.
Although I missed it the first time Teletoon aired it last weekend, I finally got a chance to see Dude of the Living Dead
, the hour-long 6Teen
Hallowe'en special that's also the first new episode of 6Teen
since last autumn (and the regular episodes of the new season starts this week). While Shaun of the Dead
remains the absolute best satire of the George Romero Dead
films, I'll have to say that Dude of the Living Dead
is the best animated zombie movie parody I've ever seen, and that includes both "Dial Z for Zombie" from the Simpsons
's "Treehouse of Horror III" and the first season South Park
episode "Pink Eye". This one actually got the feel of the Romero movies sort of right, like how, once the characters are zombies, they're zombies and don't still maintain the ability to talk and quip punchlines somehow. Also, once bitten, they only turn into zombies gradually; it's not instantaneous. There were a lot of little comic touches I liked, like how Caitlin Cooke couldn't bear breaking up with her new boyfriend even after he's been "turned" (so she keeps his arm as a memento). Also, we learn that Ron the Rent-a-Cop was apparently a Vietnam veteran, which is a little odd a revelation for a Canadian
cartoon, though I suppose he could have always moved north after coming home. (They never outright say the show's set in Canada, but they occasionally drop clues, like mentioning the Toronto Maple Leafs in passing, or Jude Lizowski talking about going to Whistler.) If there was a single problem with this episode, it was that they somewhat painted themselves into a corner with the ending, so they used the oldest cop-out in the book (and not even a halfway inventive twist on the oldest cop-out in the book as seen in Urusei Yatsura: Beatiful Dreamer
), but, eh, that's probably the way all over-the-top Hallowe'en episodes should end, so they don't have to worry about "continuity". Plus, we got to see Jude's bedroom; I'm not sure if this is the first time we've ever seen inside any of the characters' houses, but I can't seem to remember them ever showing anywhere outside of the mall.
Just for Google hit purposes, characters I didn't mention: Jen Masterson (who had a big zit on her forehead), "Jonesy" Garcia (who got his job-of-the-episode at a girl's clothing store with a peephole in the changing room by pretending that he was gay... pretty risqué for Teletoon), Wyatt Williams (who was agitated because he couldn't get access to coffee), and Nikki Wong (who was... umm... there). And the
Khaki Barn "Clones" (who, taking my bullshit 6Teen
= Super Gals!
analogy one step further, could almost be seen as the equivalent of the Ganguro "Tan Faces"). EDIT:
Oh, I just saw this: Good news, 6Teen
fans! According to the blog of singer Emilie-Claire Barlow
, who, apparently, is also the voice actress for the 6Teen
character "Chrissy" (and she was the dub voice of Raye/Sailor Mars and Mina/Sailor Venus in some dub episodes of Sailor Moon
has been picked up by Nickelodeon in the United States! While this news doesn't directly affect me, since I watch the show on Teletoon and can't even legally watch Nickelodeon in Canada, this should almost ensure a DVD release of the show in the not-too-distant future. Now, if only we could get Nickelodeon interested in Untalkative Bunny
as well.END OF EDIT
Anyway, here's something that might be of interest to 6Teen
fans; it doesn't directly have anything to do with 6Teen
, but, when I was talking about how I was browsing at Chapters yesterday
, for some reason, besides looking at manga, I briefly entered "art fag"
mode, and also felt like browsing the artbooks. While I didn't spot any new Araki-esque photobooks featuring nude Asian women, there was a coffee-table book that really caught my eye:Shag: The Art of Josh Agle
. Josh Agle
, nicknamed "Shag" (after the middle four letters of his name), is a modern artist and illustrator who paints in a style very much inspired by 1960s commercial artwork, especially that used in magazine advertisements.
While I make a lot of hay about vague, superficial, and coincidental similarities between 6Teen
and the Japanese anime series Super Gals!
(and I'm being semi-facetious), I definitely got a 6Teen
vibe from looking at this guy's artwork. Not so much from the way that Josh Agle draws females (though I could definitely make a case that Caitlin looks vaguely like some of those women), but the flat, minimalistic, stylized, and hyper-colourful backgrounds in paintings like "Blue Miles"
, "The Sky Lounge"
, and "The Relentless Party"
are very, very reminiscent of the sort of backdrops you see in 6Teen
's "Galleria Mall". It's rather uncanny, but I suppose it's probably just another case of Josh Agle and the animators at Fresh Animation
(which is the actual production studio that does the show for Nelvana) were mutually influenced by the same general mid-century commercial art style. I definitely like the style; it simplifies the drawing of the background by giving only the visual information that is most important to suggest exactly what sort of store it is, while, at the same time, using vibrant colors to keep the backgrounds from looking like plain cartoon backgrounds.
Josh Agle also has a massive online gallery of his art
, where he has literally at least a couple of hundred paintings on display. Damn, that puts my pathetic eight-piece online artwork gallery
to shame. (I'll try and finish the drawing of the girl taking a picture of the Austin-Healey automobile this coming week; I don't know why, I just felt like taking a break from drawing for a while.)
Holy crap, check this out: this Josh Agle guy evidently likes Piccadilly Circus
as much as I like Piccadilly Circus
, though his painting is based on Piccadilly Circus with mid-1960's signage, including the Guiness Clock
, while my drawing is based on Piccadilly Circus as it looked in July 2000 seeing as that's when I took the photo upon which the drawing is based
I definitely like this line from Agle's bio
: "The paintings themselves celebrate consumerism and consumption on vividly colored, sharply rendered panels; the characters drink, smoke, and eat in lavish, stylish surroundings." Wow, a rich artist who isn't a total hypocrite when it comes to capitalism. I wouldn't say that the reason I drew the Piccadilly Circus drawing myself was primarily because I'm unabashedly pro-capitalist. I just happened to like the photo I took and wanted a piece of artwork based on it to come into existence. But, obviously, the reason I'm rather fond of Piccadilly Circus in the first place is because I'm the polar opposite of polemicist Naomi Klein
and I'm rather fond of corporate logos (and I have been since I was literally about one or two years old
For further reading on Josh "Shag" Agle, there's The Covetous Neighbor
, a Josh Agle fan blog.
TO A REGULAR READER OF THIS BLOG.
I don't know who you are, but, if you're the guy who regularly visits this blog from somewhere that is probably at or near York Mills, Ontario (the Sitemeter "location" isn't always 100% accurate) and your Internet Service Provider is Rogers and you're using Windows XP as your operating system, here's a friendly tip.
You might want to scan your computer for spyware.
I think you must be using Microsoft Internet Explorer.
You see, my Sitemeter usually gives me information about which browser visitors are using, like IE or Firefox or Netscape or, occasionally, Opera, and the version number. Or, they stealth their user information, so I see "Unknown".
For you, this is what I see:
Browser Default 0.00
Get an interest free line of credit of upto 100,000,000.00 CBD for just signing up and pay back whenever you want! (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; SV1; .NET CLR 1.1.4322; Get an interest free line of credit of upto 100,000,000.00 CBD for just signi
I don't know what half of that scam come-on even means, and how exactly they can offer interest-free lines of credit of up to a hundred million dollars (though I think I just found a way that ADV Films can fund their live-action Evangelion
movie that currently seems completely stalled in early preproduction). But, it's very, very obvious to me that your browser is infected with some sort of spyware, spamware or adware, and that, whatever it is exactly that it's infected with, it has it in spades.
I first noticed this a month ago, but I thought that, whatever was wrong with your browser, it would be fairly immediately noticable by you. Alas, since this weird text is still showing up, it's obvious that you remain unaware that anything is wrong. Maybe it's something running in the background.
Use the freeware software trifecta I use: Ad Aware
, Spyboy Search & Destroy
, and a lesser-known piece of software called Swat It
! And get a piece of software called Hijack This! from this page
to see exactly which proccesses are running on your system.
THE EXTRA HOUR MAKES THIS THE BEST NIGHT FOR SLEEPING OF THE YEAR...
...so I'm wasting it writing this.
Just a little personal update.
On Friday, I got a letter from my medical clinic. In July, I went to one of the medical clinics in this system to get a referral to a neurologist. I don't want go into too much detail why, but, since the last year which I spent at Concordia was such a write-off (mainly due to depression due to total lack of anything happening in my life at the time), if I want to even have a prayer of getting into Carleton University for the fall, I have to see a neurologist to get some things officially diagnosed (and then I'll get in touch with Concordia, and then I'll speak to admissions at Carleton). Anyway, the good news is that I finally got an actual appointment with a neurologist. The bad news is that it's in April. I wouldn't say that I agree with Michael Moore much, but, certainly, in Canadian Bacon
, the scene where the candy-striped interns treat patients well, but you have to wait months upon months for any sort of appointment is very, very true. At least, on Wednesday, I'll finally see my own doctor for the check-up that I made the appointment for back in April.
This afternoon, I went to the University of Ottawa anime club
, but it didn't seem to be in the normal room in the Montpetit building, so I checked the usual alternate room in the ARTS building, and nada there either, so I just assumed it was cancelled. Unfortunately, checking their website, it was on tonight, it just happened to be in a different room in the Montpetit building that I don't recall them ever having a meeting at. So I missed two whole episodes of Ah My Goddess!
Since I assumed that there was no club meeting and since it was before 6 p.m., I decided to walk over to the Rideau Centre area of Ottawa. I wanted to see if HMV had the first volume of Ah My Goddess!
TV on DVD (nope), and then I wanted to see if the Chapters on Rideau Street had volume 10 of Mihona Fujii's Gals!
manga in French (nope). I noticed that Chapters had a security guard prominently placed facing the top of the escalators in front of the French section; I wonder if someone from the Rideau Street Chapters read my entry from last month about "fake shoplifting"
? Since I was looking for something specific, and since I wanted to check this store out anyway, I then went to a French-language bookstore that I spotted on Dalhousie, across the street from the rear of the Bay department store, near the Byward Market, called "Librairie du Soleil". It was a medium-sized bookstore; nothing like the spacious Renaud-Bray stores in downtown Montreal. Maybe it was the size of the small Renaud-Bray store in the Complexe Desjardins that used to be a Librairie Garneau in the 1990s. Certainly, it's a superior selection of French-language books to that at the Chapters. They didn't have what I was looking for either, but, being in a predominantly French bookstore helped abate some of the lingering homesickness for Montreal that I still feel from time to time. (Yes, I know I could just take the number 8 bus from downtown Ottawa to go to the Renaud-Bray in Hull/Gatineau, but I just haven't gotten around to doing that yet for some reason. Perhaps because I'd have to use an extra set of tickets.)
One manga I did notice was volume 3 of Mobile Suit Gundam: École du Ciel
, a manga-only Gundam
story from Macross
creator Haruhiko Mikimoto (who was also the character designer for the Gundam 0080: A War in the Pocket
anime). Jesse Betteridge
pointed out something very interesting about this manga to me. There is a rather unique twist about this manga that is very much of interest to me: it's set in Montreal (or near Montreal). Since they didn't have volume 1, I went back to Chapters and browsed it there. You see a tiny bit of Montreal, like a few outdoor cafés and I think the École du Ciel school itself is located on Mount Royal, but it wasn't a travelogue the way Gals!
is for Shibuya. Of course, the story takes place in the year 0085 of the Universal Century timeline
, so it takes place, at minimum, some 68 years in the future, so I dare say that many of my favourite Montreal haunts, like the Centre Eaton, the Paramount, and Chapters, might not even be around by then. Who knows?
I vaguely wanted to see a movie, so I checked out both Rideau Centre and the World Exchange Plaza cinemas, but I'm waiting to mooch a second viewing of Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit
off my parents when they see it, and I really wasn't in the mood to see Doom
or Saw II
(never saw the first Saw
). I was sort of maybe wanting to see Gore Verbinski's The Weather Man
with Nicholas Cage. From what I hear, it's another Hollywood movie that portrays the suburbs as being full of sinister hypocrites with skeletons in their closet, but, eh, I'm kind of in the mood for some Oscar bait comedy à la Sideways
. Unfortunately, I think it's only playing at the AMC in Kanata, which is where most of the arthouse fodder ends up, and I didn't feel like taking a bus way out into the boonies today. Instead, I decided to just take the bus to Merivale and rent a movie at Blockbuster. Funny thing happened on the way to Merivale; just before Merivale, the 68 bus dropped some people off on the bus stop near the Parkwood Presbyterian Church
. And then the back doors closed. And opened. And closed. And opened. And closed. And opened. And so on. One of the push bar sensors for opening the doors had become jammed somehow, so the bus had to sit there and call in a replacement. Fortunately, I was only about 1 stop away from the stop I was getting off at, so I just walked the rest of the way, went to Blockbuster (where I think they were astonished to see me there at a time that wasn't immediately before closing time), and I decided to rent Batman Begins
, now that my animosity towards the fanboys overhyping the film has died down somewhat. (Yes, I know that the two Schurmacher Batman
films were too heavy on the comedy, but, still, Bruce Wayne is a millionaire who dresses up as a bat to fight criminals. That's still inherently camp.) I was also hoping that this Blockbuster would have that classic silly Hallowe'en film wherein Tim Curry dresses up like some sort of Transylvanian transvestite and he sings a song, but, sadly, just like Pincourt Blockbuster, Merivale Blockbuster didn't seem to have The Worst Witch
either, so, unless the Prince of Wales Blockbuster near Hog's Back has it, I'll just have to make do with my usual Hallowe'en viewing of Lifeforce
and Dawn of the Dead
Oh, yes, by the way, my sister seems to have won the rather slow-paced race to see which one of the four siblings in my family would be the first to make our parents into grandparents. (Not that I was anywhere close to even being in the running.) The baby is due at the beginning of July. Somehow, I just don't feel like uncle material, though. Guess I'll have to get used to the idea of being one.