STRANGE THINGS ARE AFOOT
AT THE CIRCLE K ON THE WAY TO MERIVALE BLOCKBUSTER...
Hmm... I didn't write anything about this last night, because I wanted to wait and see if there was anything mentioned about this in the Ottawa news. But I can't find anything in the news about a murder or a mysterious death in Nepean last night, so, whatever this was, I don't think anyone's dead (and I'm safe mentioning it without anyone thinking I'm semi-confessing to something in hopes of being added to the "Blogroll of Evil" that Kevin Underwood
has recently joined).
I had to take a DVD of the Nicholas Cage film, The Weather Man
, back to Merivale Blockbuster
. Since Blockbuster is open until midnight, and since I'm partial to peaceful late-evening strolls, I didn't leave my house until about 11:25 p.m. (which is my usual departure time for walking to Merivale Blockbuster, and it was my usual departure time for walking to Pincourt Blockbuster).
As I was passing by Inverness Park, I heard an odd noise. It sounded almost like the static you get when you power up large speakers (like for a concert or public address) mixed in with the disconcerting noise of some kind of heavy machine powering up somewhere in the hatch that John Locke hears when "the numbers" (4 8 15 16 23 42) aren't inputted in time on Lost
. It lasted for a couple of seconds, and then it was gone. And it wasn't coming from any discernable source.
Then, a few seconds later, and I don't think this is connected to the mysterious sound, there was a car doing a manoeuvre on Inverness, starting off going south, then it turned right (to the west) just behind two cars parked in front of the park chalet, almost pulling up onto the sidewalk, then it reversed and turned, so that it was facing north, and it reversed along Inverness to stop in front of the pathway to the Lasalle apartment building. I only made a mental note of this because I was walking along the sidewalk and did not want to get hit. I don't remember what kind of car it was, but it could have been a compact sedan, like a late-model Ford Taurus or something. I wasn't checking to see if anyone was getting out of the car or whether they were just waiting to pick-up someone from the apartment building.
I turned west along Meadowlands, and, after the crest of the hill, somewhere near Parkwood Hills public school, I saw three police cars heading east. It's not that odd to see police cars there, since an Ottawa neighbourhood police sub-station is nearby, but three in a row heading in the same direction is a little out of the ordinary.
I made it to Merivale Blockbuster around 11:54 p.m. without any further incident, but, on the way back, as I was on Meadowlands approaching the McDaniel's Independent supermarket, I saw an ambluance heading east.
15 minutes or so later, I was crossing Inverness Park, and I noticed, in front of the Lasalle apartment building, two of the three police cars that I saw earlier and the ambulance.
I have no idea what the emergency vehicles were responding to, and whether or not it was connected to the noise and the car stopping in front of the same apartment building, but whatever it was (maybe a domestic violence call), it doesn't appear to have been newsworthy.
Incidentally, in case you were wondering what I got at Blockbuster, I bit the bullet and bought the random previously-viewed volume of Excel Saga
(volume 3, "When Excel Strikes (Out)") that I mentioned the other day.
I also continued my streak of renting Oscar bait that I didn't get around to seeing with Walk the Line
starring Joaquin Phoenix as the late Johnny Cash. I haven't watched it yet, though.
Oh, and I was kind of hoping of renting the Sonic the Hedgehog
-spin-off game Shadow the Hedgehog
for the Playstation 2, being someone who actually likes the gameplay of the modern incarnation of the series that began with Sonic Adventure
on the Sega Dreamcast, but I couldn't find it in the new releases section, even if I'm sure that I saw it the previous time I was there.
Maybe I'll write some kind of mini-review of The Weather Man
NEW SAILOR MOON RUMOUR...
File this under rumour, or "rumor", if you're American, but the Cinematical blog
informs us that the Japanese anime magazine Animage
claims that Fox has optioned the rights to make an American live-action version of Sailor Moon
, and they want Lindsay Lohan to play the title role and Joss Whedon would direct.
Considering that Lindsay Lohan is now a few years too old for the part, unless they change whatever they'll call the American version of Usagi Tsukino to be a college student, and considering that some fanboys claim that Whedon's Buffy the Vampire Slayer
rips-off Sailor Moon
(even though the original movie version of Buffy
was already in post-production by the time Sailor Moon
first aired on Japanese TV in April 1992), I smell the distinct scent of 100% unadulterated bullplop, but, until Fox makes some kind of official announcement, we'll never know for sure.
And even if Fox does have the rights, it's no guarantee that the film will ever be made. EXHIBIT A: Live-action Dragonball Z
, announced in 2002 to be on the fast-track to hit theatres in the summer of 2004. But it stalled early in development, and we've heard nothing solid about this in almost two years.
Of course, this is not the first time that it's been rumoured that an American studio is interested in adapting Sailor Moon
into a live-action film. In the summer of 1997, rumours surfaced that Disney had optioned the rights, and Geena Davis wanted to both produce it and star in it as Queen Beryl. If there was ever any vailidity to that rumour, nothing ever came of it, and the rights would probably have lapsed by now.
And, if I'm talking about American live-action Sailor Moon
, I would be remiss not to give a link to the article about Saban's aborted attempt to turn Sailor Moon into a hybrid live-action and American cartoon series
, the follow-up article
, and a link to the trailer
Speaking of live-action Sailor Moon
, as in the Japanese Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon series
, I just wanted to say that I will only see The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift
because the stunning Keiko Kitagawa, who played Rei Hino/Sailor Mars on the live-action show, has a small supporting role.
NEWSFLASH! INTERNET FAD PSYCHOLOGICAL SELF-DIAGNOSES OFTEN INACCURATE!
(Apparently, I'm just S.A.D.)
For the past couple of years, my mother and one of my brothers have been near certain that I have Asperger's Syndrome
, a disorder that is on the mild end of the Autistic spectrum, characterized by, among other things, poor social skills, an inability to recognize proper social cues, lack of desire to want to socialize, some peculiarites in vocal pitch and speech patterns, clumsiness, exxentric interests, and just general failure to develop peer relationships. I've never had an easy time making friends, a fact that sometimes bothers me, though sometimes I'm indifferent about it. It's not that I don't like people, it's just that I've always felt a bit uncomfortable getting too close to others, which might seem a little strange considering (generally) how open I am about myself in this blog, but I don't mind being "open" when it's for no one in particular.
Due to having left Concordia University in a situation where I wasn't exactly in the best of academic standing (due to what I now recognize was severe depression, even if I wasn't willing to admit it to myself back then... hell, that's why I fizzled out in the computer animation classes prior to my re-entry into Concordia), and due to my general difficulty getting into job placement programmes here in Ontario, we decided to try and get the official Asperger's diagnosis once and for all last summer. Actually, our first attempt was a bit before them, back when I was still living in Pincourt, but eh, the doctor who could hardly speak English at the Dorion clinic (not her fault, but my old family doctor shouldn't have referred me there) was hardly any help.
On a hot day last July, I went to one of the Appletree clinics to get a referral (actually, two, since the one I usually go to wasn't taking drop-ins that time of day, so I had to walk to the one further along Baseline, near Pinecrest, and it was mid-afternoon on a sweltering day with little shade). They'd refer me to a psychologist to get a proper diagnosis. A couple of weeks later, I got a call about an appointment. Only, the waiting lists in Ontario for this kind of thing are incredibly long, so my appointment was almost nine months in the future, last Wednesday.
But, anyway, enough bitching about how long it took. The important part is that I finally got to see a psychologist about it on Wednesday. The shrink was quite an old man, but, for this sort of appointment, I find that I actually prefer having elderly psychologists, especially ones who were studying psychology before the 1960s and who, in my mind, might be less prone to giving out fad diagnoses.
I told him a little about myself, about my childhood. Not that it was an unhappy one, but I never socialized well as a little kid. Not that I didn't have any friends, but I did have a tendency to act a bit stand-offish and uninterested in them, and they did so to me as well sometimes. Another problem I had was that I moved to Pincourt after attending kindergarten in Beaconsfield, and most of the kids at Edgewater elementary school already seemed to know each other well, and I could never quite shake that feeling of not being in their private club. But I wasn't really bothered by my lackluster socialization skills, at least not until later in my childhood, around the time I started high school at Macdonald. I was near-genius in elementary school, did okay in grade 7 and 8, but my grades really began to slide starting around grade 9, to the point where I didn't fail grade 11 really only because my parents were communicating with the high school guidance counsellor and the school board psychologist, and the teachers bent over backwards to not flunk me. Part of my problems in high school were probably rooted in the fact that I was not skipped ahead to be in the next grade up (which I would have been in had I been born two days earlier, on September 30th
, the cut-off date for enrollment in Quebec schools), but a large part of it was that I felt worse and worse about myself because I didn't have many friends, and the few friends I had were not too close, like people I could talk to in the hallway or on the bus, but no one I could call to hang out with. Though I suspect at least a little bit of the depression was because the idea that I wasn't socializing well kept on being reinforced by well-meaning people.
My first attempt at CEGEP (Quebec junior college), taking fine arts at John Abbott in 1992, was a total washout, passing only drawing the first semester and only history of art the second sememster. I was just too depressed to care, really, and I was also taking Accutane for my acne, which exasperated the effects of the depression (and also made my lips as dry as sandpaper, but that's another story). I was out of normal college for three years (though I took a couple of part-time courses to fulfill my readmission requirements). However, in the interim, I did join the anime club
, so I was getting a modicum of the socialization I was missing in my life before, and, while I was still somewhat melancholy, I was no longer severely depressed, and I didn't really get all that depressed again until the beginning of this decade (pre-9/11).
But my big barrier to making friends, especially as an adult, has been that I am painfully shy, to the point of it being crippling. I can talk okay if I'm very comfortable with a person, but there are only a handful of people in the world with which that is applicable, and when I'm talking to most people, at least in social circumstances, I freeze up. And I hate talking on the phone, other than to my close relatives and calling to order KFC and such. I have to really psych myself up to make most phone calls, and I have avoided making many an important phone call because I couldn't bring myself to do it.
So, what's the doctor's opinion? Is it Asperger's?
Eh, he thought I was a bit too interested in communicating with others for it to be Asperger's. While I wouldn't say I was fully at ease, I still seemed a little too lively and sociable. Plus, I was missing some of the key symptoms, namely that I don't seem to have any odd repetitive activities that I can't seem to stop myself from doing (the way an Obsessive Compuslive Disorder sufferer might wash his hands 20 times each after each time he goes to the bathroom).
He thought my problems are more likely to be Social Anxiety Disorder
, which is itself also very crippling, especially if you have it as bad as me. And, while I don't get random panic attacks, at least when I'm not in the situations I outlined above, I do always feel a vague, undefined "dread". He said it's possible I could have both, but it wasn't too likely.
(Here's an overview on the differences between Asperger's and Social Anxiety Disorder
In some ways I was quite relieved to hear that, because Asperger's is pretty much a permanent condition you're born with and you cannot do a damn thing about, while social anxiety disorder is more a result of nurture, and is, more treatable. While I think, if you go back in this blog and check, I might have claimed once or twice that I was probably suffering from Asperger's, but, while I mostly believed it, in the back of my head I couldn't help but wonder if I was subscribing to kind of a fad self-diagnosis. Think of the superb second season Simpsons
episode, "Lisa's Substite" (the one with Dustin Hoffman as Mr. Bergstrom, the only teacher who ever truly listened to Lisa), from back when they gave a fuck about telling a good story. In that episode, Miss Hoover took a break because she was suffering from Lyme Disease, but, it turns out that her symptoms was psychosomatic, and she believed she had it because it had been all over the news that year. Well, when you're socially awkward and are in one of the geek fandoms, especially anime, it has become kind of the "in" thing for people to self-diagnose themselves with Asperger's
, as though it's the only thing in the world that can explain our lack of social skills. Not that I'm not saying that there aren't some people in anime fandom who don't legitimately have it, but, sometimes people really want to have it as kind of a cover-all excuse, and because it makes them feel special. Or, just because, it would put your mind at ease that there is a solid, definite, easy-to-define reason why you are the way you are.
The downside to not having Asperger's is that I get the general idea that there is more help, especially of the job placement sort, available to people with that inborn condition, rather than a garden-variety mental problem like I apparently have. One's a mental handicap and the other... well, you're just "nuts" and you're generally on your own. At least, that's how I feel about the difference between them sometimes.
But the doctor agreed that chronic Social Anxiety Disorder can be effectively as much of a handicap. He gave me a prescription for Citalopram (brand name: Celexa)
, which I'm supposed to take daily, and Alprazolam (Xanax)
, which I should take only when needed. He wondered if I was on a plan on which these drugs were covered, and I told him I wasn't sure, so he advised me, and, as a right-of-centre blogger, I really hesitate to tell you this, to go on welfare. That's against my general principles, and, also, I'm not sure I'm eligible because I live with my parents. But he gave me a certificate that seems to (hard to tell, since it's doctor writing) officially list my Social Anxiety as a disability, which could open some doors for me that weren't open before, especially on the assistance front in getting a job (and getting back into school in this province). I'll look into what I can do with the certificate over the next week or two.
I made another appointment for next month (at 9:30 a.m.... gah, I hate getting up early in the morning).
My mother was generally understanding, even if she was a little surprised that the doctor didn't think I had Asperger's. She thought that I did exhibit some of the repetitive motor symptoms by doing something she calls "flapping". I'm not even sure what she's talking about there, but it might be some nervous tic that I'm not entirely aware that I'm doing. I told her that she might be interested in coming with me to see the doctor next month, just so she can give her perspective.
She did get the drugs and thinks that I am covered for that (you buy the drugs and get repaid later). On Friday night, I took the Citalopram for the first time, and it's stronger than I thought. I was only supposed to take a half-tablet for the first week, but these pills are damn hard to take apart, and I couldn't do it with my fingers and I didn't feel like going upstairs to get a knife, I threw caution to the wind and had the whole pill, washing it down with a beer (because, hey, "Ripper is a gangsta" and all that). Damn, that stuff's stronger than the Serzone I tried several years ago. I was almost tripping. I tried to watch Fullmetal Alchemist
on YTV, because it was apparently the "hook" episode with the scientist experimenting on kids that, if I wasn't sold on the series before, would make me a fan. But all I did was get distracted by the dub, because I thought that, when the actors said "Chimera", it sounded like they were saying "Camaro", as in the classic Chevrolet muscle car. Then I watched Boondocks
and something a lot more appropriate to be viewing under the influence of substances, Aqua Teen Hunger Force
, though the high-ness wore off by the time Teletoon got to Harvey Birdman
ANIME FANS IN THE NEWS!
I've decided to start a new occasional feature for this blog, "Anime Fans In The News!"
, taking a look at the diverse group of people we can count as fellow enthusiasts of our happy little hobby when they make some kind of mark upon the mainstream of society.
Today's featured anime fan? Oklahoma child-killer Kevin Ray Underwood
, against whom first-degree murder charges were filed today
PURCELL, Oklahoma (CNN) -- "Prosecutors filed first-degree murder charges Monday against a grocery store clerk accused of killing a 10-year-old neighbor in a bizarre scheme to consume human flesh.
Kevin Ray Underwood remained in a Oklahoma jail cell under a suicide watch. He is being arraigned Monday afternoon for the slaying of Jamie Rose Bolin.
The girl's body was found late Friday in a plastic tub hidden in a bedroom closet in Underwood's apartment in Purcell, south of Oklahoma City, District Attorney Tim Kuykendall said.
A police affidavit says Underwood confessed to killing the girl.
Underwood's blog allegedly revealed his bizarre intentions.
Underwood, 26, wrote, "If you were a cannibal, what would you wear to dinner?"
"My fantasies are getting weirder and weirder," he wrote in another entry. "Dangerously weird. If people knew the kinds of things I think about anymore, I'd probably be locked away."
Purcell Police Chief David Tompkins said investigators think Underwood planned to eat the girl's corpse, according to an AP report."
Yup, Kevin Underwood was a blogger. Right here at Blogspot too (because why should LiveJournal, Xanga, and MySpace get all the psychos? Though Underwood also had a profile on MySpace
, a fact which I'm sure that San Diego radio host Mark Larson
, whom I listen to online on KOGO after Rush Limbaugh, and who is also a spokesman for Donna Rice's Protect Kids organization
, will make a lot of hay about over the next few weeks).
While I had vaguely heard about Kevin Underwood, or at least the murder he committed, over the weekend, I didn't know about his blog until I turned on CNN this afternoon and recognized his profile as being a Blogspot one.
Incidentally, CNN made one minor factual error in the portion of their online story that I quoted before. It's true that the question "If you were a cannibal, what would you wear to dinner?"
appears in his profile
, but that's actually one of the unusual random questions Blogger.com (the user page for Blogspot blogs) asks you when you fill out your profile, to make your profile a little more interesting and individualized than just a basic recitation of Age/Sex/Location. (My profile has "When you've got water stuck in your ear, how do you get it out?", and there was another one it used to have asking what you'd do if your tongue became magnetic.) Kevin Underwood's contribution is the answer: "The skin of last night's main course."
(Ooh, according to his profile
, we have one top movie in common, apparently, Airplane!
. Weirdly, he doesn't list Silence of the Lambs
as one of his top films, but he does list the Dom DeLuise parody, Silence of the Hams
. And we're both fans of "Weird Al" Yankovic.)
I Googled for more information about this case (and because I'm such a voyeur when it comes to reading killers' blogs), and came across this entry in Huff's Crime Blog about the case
, giving links to Underwood's blogs, as well as a link to Blogspot blogger Optymyst
, who has written an entry about the case archiving several very goth-style cartoons that Kevin Underwood drew
on his Geocities site (which appears to have been taken down)
Steve Huff also mentions that Kevin Underwood was an anime fan.
"Police believe that though Underwood lived next to Jamie Bolin’s family, he may have furthered his relationship with the girl online, having sexually charged exchanges over the internet. They are still investigating this angle. One would ask how he met her—a ready answer may be in his proximity to her home, but he also was a fan of anime and manga, Japanese cartoon art which is popular with people as young as 8 and many older than 26, as well. Unfortunately, pursuits like that are often latched onto by those who would prey on children as well, since they see the hobby as a logical way to get close to children without seeming too suspicious."
I wouldn't say that's the reason most of us "over twenty-sixes" post at anime forums, I post there to talk about Japanese cartoons and not really to socialize (and most of the people from anime forums I talk to on AIM are at least twenty), but certainly anime forums are a place where adult men and young teenagers (and even a handful of 10 and 11 year olds) mingle, so I don't deny that there would be at least a small cause for concern for some parents if a child spends too much time communicating to adults he met on anime forums, though anime forums are nothing compared to MySpace when it comes to men with creepy intentions.
And, in defense of anime, while anime, and I might be speaking from first-hand experience to some degree, may lead people to have some pretty pervy fantasies, perhaps involving combinations of Kiyone Makibi
, Natsumi Tsujimoto
, Rei Hino/Sailor Mars
, and a jar of Nutella spread, you can rest assured that no anime I've ever watched has ever planted in my head the desire to commit cannibalism. I can't even think of any anime offhand that even has cannibalism as a plot device (other than a sight gag of Presea from Magic Knights RayEarth
, who, imagining possible punishments for Hikaru, Umi, and Fuu for breaking into her house, is shown dressed as a Native American doing a dance around a pot with the girls cooking in it).EDIT:
Oh, wait, there's Waita Uziga's infamous guro hentai
pictures, featuring gory pictures of anime girls in various stages of disembowelment, but that's not technically anime.END OF EDIT.
Kevin Underwood's main blog is called "Strange Things are Afoot at the Circle K"
(and the URL includes the somewhat self-aggrandizing "Future World Ruler"). I know that many bloggers are acting as amateur "experts" in criminal psychology in analyzing his posts (and there are a few professional criminal psychologists chiming in too), but I'm not going to try and psychoanalyze the guy (though he mentioned in his MySpace profile
that he was taking prescription drugs for Social Anxiety Disorder, and I've just started taking something called Citalopram for that very problem myself, so that's one creepy parallel between me and him).
Over the past two years or so, I've come to feel that I should only comment on issues when I have something original to bring to the table myself, so I'll link to the entries he did about anime.He talks about liking the (pretty-looking but rather boring) anime film Metropolis
(which happens to be one of the films on my Overrated Anime Films list
), and hating Clerks
, which I still think is Kevin Smith's best film (though I haven't seen Jersey Girl
).He talks about his sister writing a story
that is a fairly straight rip-off of Inuyasha
.He gives a long, rambling, account of a shopping trip
in which he bought anime stuff. (Wow, I don't know any anime-fan bloggers who ever wrote that kind of entry
... [shifty eyes]
). Among the things he bought were a copy of the magazine Anime Invasion
(hmm... I'm sure that former editor and ANN Answerman Zac Bertschy
would be thrilled to know that he had Kevin Underwood as a one-time reader!), a volume of Ken Akamatsu's
wacky romantic "harem" comedy manga Love Hina
, some Pocky
(the Japanese chocolate snack food popular with western self-proclaimed "Otaku"), and DVDs of Akira
and Yuu Yuu Hakusho
. He also name-drops the anime Tenchi Muyo
, so I know the guy had at least partially good taste in anime.He talks about his new obsession
, the somewhat infamous
, a comic drawn in a manga-influenced style about American anime fans who get stranded in Japan and who all discover that Japan isn't quite the wacky robot schoolgirl paradise that Project A-ko
made it out to be, created by noted "Wapanese" cartoonist Fred Gallagher.He talks about wanting to open his own imported Japanese stuff store
similar to the largely-not-safe-for-work online store J-List
, and talks about buying another volume of Love Hina
. I think we have conclusive proof of what reading too much Love Hina
can lead people to do. Maybe that North Carolina sherrif who warned parents about Love Hina
was on the right track.He reveals that one of his favourite anime is Cowboy Bebop
, and he brags about ordering a box set of it for only $70 from DiscountAnimeDVD.com. That's a bootleg site! You're supporting Taiwanese triads by not buying it legitimately from Bandai, you bastard! And I bet all those CDs you bought for suspiciously cheap were all bootlegged SonMay or Ever Anime CDs!He talks about webcomics he likes
, again listing Megatokyo
.He talks about wanting to build a site like Jlist.com
(again), and Megatokyo
"This is my dream, it would be so cool to have a store like this, because something like this is the only thing that I can think of that I WANT to do. That's why I never finished college, and haven't went back yet, I just don't know what to study, nothing interests me. I just want to do something I enjoy, which is this kind of stuff. Geek Stuff (which could maybe be the name of our store). I want to be a geek, and get paid for it. I want to sit around and read manga, and watch anime, and play video games, and get paid for it. This is my dream. I AM A GEEK."He talks about his new favourite anime
, the parody-heavy anime comedy Excel Saga
. This is an anime I've actually been wanting to see myself, especially considering that Excel Excel (who, incidentally, dies in every episode, just like South Park
's Kenny did until Matt Stone and Trey Parker got tired of the gag) is voiced by Kotono Mitsuishi, the Japanese voice actress who is best known as being the voice of Usagi Tsukino/Sailor Moon, but who is also great at voicing characters who speak at a frentic pace, especially Mink
from Dragon Half
, which is the same kind of comedy, only in a fantasy setting rather than a sci-fi one. And I hear it's the same general type of comedy as Project A-ko
, one of my favourite anime films. But Excel Saga
hasn't been shown on Canadian cable. I've been thinking about getting into this anime lately, though, because Merivale Blockbuster
has a previously-viewed copy of it on sale for only $8, only it's volume 3 and I don't know if I want to buy random volumes of a show sight-unseen just for the heck of it, though I did recently get my GST rebate cheque, and my mother gave me $25 for Easter. This paragraph should win an award for "the most extraneous 'aside' paragraph in an article about a child-killer ever".He gives a positive review to Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11.
Not that that entry has anything to do with anime, just the die-hard Bush-fan in me feels like pointing that one out.
Kevin Underwood also had a second blog
, aimed at teaching people simple Japanese, though he abandoned it after a couple of months. He wrote out the text from lessons that are, quite obviously lifted from textbooks (he should be charged with plagiarism!). The lesson text actually seems a little familiar, like I'm sure I've read it somewhere before, but I checked the two such books I have, Teach Yourself Japanese
by H.J. Ballhatchet and S.K. Kaiser and Japanese All the Way
by Hiroko Storm, and it's neither of those.
I've been skeptical that there would ever be a huge backlash against anime in North America. There's the occasional article
warning about some of the more prurient and occultic elements of anime on religious "family" media watchdog sites like Focus on the Family, but anime is really too niche for there to be all that much of an ongoing, organized campaign against it, the way there was for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons
or Judas Priest records in the 1980s. But, if there was ever an incident that would cause the easily-outraged to rally against anime, it would be the murder of Jamie Rose Bolin, even if I don't think that anime was the cause of his deranged fantasies anymore than Pepsi would be responsible if the authorities found that in his refrigerator. You just know some groups are going to make the association between the murder and anime anyway, even if it isn't even tenuous.
In short, we North American anime fans now have our very own version of Japan's Tsutomu Miyazaki
to live down.
Happy Easter and/or Passover!
I hopw you're having a good one, surrounded by family or friends (if applicable to your life situation).
Yesterday, our bird feeder was visited by a cardinal yesterday. My mother pointed it out to me through the window on our backdoor, so I grabbed the camera and took a couple of shots. Alas, it was late (sometime around dusk) and cloudy, so the camera used the automatic shutter setting for low-light conditions, keeping the shutter open a little longer than normal. The downside of the low-light setting is that the pictures can get blurry if you don't have a tripod (as you can see by the fireworks pictures in my Canada Day entry from last year
), and I have pretty steady hands.
It kind of looks like the bird feeder is floating in air, but it's just hanging off the eaves of the back porch.
Say, did anyone see the near full moon last night? I was walking along Meadowlands to Merivale McDonald's
, and I spotted something big and odd to the south. It was round, but not quite a perfect circle, a deep amber yellow, and had what looked like a red ring outlining it. I first thought that it might have been some new advertising sign, perhaps on the side of that recently-finished apartment/condominium building near McDonald's (the one on the left in the photo I linked to), but there was a thin band of clouds in front of it, and the apartment building isn't that tall. I then, briefly, pretended that it was some kind of unusually-shaped UFO, and I thought, somewhat in jest, that, if I was walking towards a McDonald's and an alien invasion was breaking out, I'd probably continue on to my destination anyway, since there's not a damn thing I could do to stop it, and, if a battle between humans and aliens was imminent, it's not like I'd likely get another chance to eat a Big Mac anytime soon, so, presuming that the McDonald's wouldn't be the first target of the alien armadas, I'd take a few minutes to savour my final Big Mac. But I quickly determined that it was just the moon, but it looked really distorted somehow, perhaps by the clouds or some invisible layer of haze.
By the way, what's more pathetic than wasting a couple of hours at some seedy bar playing video poker machines?
Wasting a couple of hours in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
playing fake video poker in the Four Dragons casino in Las Venturas (the San Andreas
version of Las Vegas). In some ways, it's better playing video poker this way, since you're not losing any real money (you don't even have to lose any fictional money either if you don't save the game), but, on the other hand, there's absolutely no chance you'll gain any real money by doing this. You're just spinning your wheels, really.
Even fake video poker is like crack.