Archive for July, 2008


Thursday, July 31st, 2008

My replacement has been here in Hong Kong for a few days now.  The training is going along swimmingly I suppose.  There’s a lot to cover.  I don’t think I’ve talked this much…  well… ever.

Some of the things I tell him he already knows.  I think some of the things come as genuine surprises.  It’s not an easy job.  Usually.

Met with him in Wan Chai for a few beers tonight on my way home.  Now it’s late and I have a headache.  More to do tomorrow.

Medicine and sleep.

Haibane Renmei

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008
Haibane Renmei DVD box art

Haibane Renmei DVD box art

I just finished watching the last few episodes of Haibane Renmei. It’s not the typical anime that would normally appeal to me and I hadn’t even heard of it till I happened to see clips of it from an anime music video. It’s only 13 episodes long and it’s a sad but sweet story that I really enjoyed.

The pacing of it and the feeling I got while watching this show was similar to how I feel when watching My Neighbor Totoro for the ump-teenth time. Which is a good thing because I absolutely love Totoro.  Haibane Renmei just seems similar to me for some reason.  There’s no real action, no bad guy, no ‘obvious’ conflict. I wrote more but deleted it. If anyone is actually inspired to watch this short series, I’d hate to give away any clues as to what happens.  All I want to say is that this is the type of story that will have the more sensitive types with at least a few tears.

And for those who see the characters in this have halos and feathered wings and immediately dismiss the show then it’s your loss.  The characters may look something like angels but there’s nothing religious about the series.  It has its own mythologies and beliefs that, as far as I could tell, should offend no ones sensibilities.

If this sounds like something you’d like, I would definitely recommend at least a rental.  I watched it in Japanese with English subtitles.  I know some people are put off by subtitles but they aren’t bad at all here.  The dialog is easy to follow.

La Vida Poco

Tuesday, July 29th, 2008

Bachelor life is starting to get to me I think.  I’ve played so much Beautiful Katamari that I think my hands have permanantly contorted into grasping claws.  Which is actually rather convenient for playing XBox games to be honest.  Makes typing hard though.

Add to that bizarre Japanese game the fact that I have been watching nothing but Japanese language movies and TV (with English subtitles of course) and I’m relatively sure I can here The Vapors invading my internal soundtrack.  And that’s never a good thing.

As you can see from my Most Recently list over on the right, it’s been kind of crazy.  I’m also watching Kagemusha but I didn’t get to finish it last night due to various phone calls and laundry, but that’s another that will be added to the list.  I actually haven’t completely finished watching Haibane Renmei yet either so please do not post anything about that or any spoilers (that pretty much means Insomnic).  I would hate to have to kill you in your sleep.

I’m currently downloading Neon Genesis Evangelion so I can continue this craziness.  I can’t get an English version here in Hong Kong, so… well… piracy to the rescue!  Don’t worry MPAA, it’s still on my Amazon Wishlist.

Perhaps I’ll get some sushi for lunch today.  Hmm….

The ethics of joke writing

Monday, July 28th, 2008

Wow, that title sounds impressive.

To be honest, which I mostly am, I do not write the jokes that get posted on this site.  Anyone who bothers to read all the crap e-mail their so-called friends and family will already know that.  I cherry pick my favorites from the billions of jokes floating about the internet.  Often I find myself editing them for spelling, grammar, formatting and sometimes content because refinement is not always a bad thing.  I mean let’s face it – not all jokes are good.  However sometimes I’ll run across an absolute crap joke that has a good idea that can be fixed.  I still don’t claim the jokes as mine when I do that, but I like to think I bring the quality up a notch or so at least.

On the other hand, the jokes at A Little Scary are mostly my own.  There have been two instances where I took a funny conversation from the now defunct site and adapted them into a format and relevance to fit the comic.  And as long as that old overheard conversation website stays down, I can claim those jokes as mine still.  But it also sucks because it was the original overheard conversation site on the web and it was a great source of motivation.  I mean seriously… people are really stupid sometimes.  I’m living proof.

One upcoming comic is actually an old e-mail joke adapted to fit the comic strip format of A Little Scary.  The punch line is the same, but everything else was created new for the strip.  I’d like to think that I can claim that as my own because 95.8% of the content is created by me if you count the “artwork” as well.

So if you’re still reading this post, you’re probably starting to fidget and wondering what my point is.  Well, I have to be honest: I really don’t know.  I guess the point is that you should always give credit where credit is due.  This is true in general as well as at work and in dealing with everything and anything.  If you feel you can only get ahead by taking credit for other people’s work then you really need to admit that to yourself and take a step back and decide if that’s really who you want to be.  Nobody likes a fake.  Not even other fakes.  And no matter how good you are at faking it, there’s no substitute for making something yourself, something you can be proud of and honestly feel good about with no regrets.  Nothing can top that.

In case you’re wondering, no I’m not writing this because someone has wronged me in some way.  I’m just sharing a small part of what makes me tick, so to speak.  I think it’s an important life lesson that most people have been on one side of or the other but it seems to get overlooked.  People often miss the big picture because they are either too busy trying to keep up the illusion or too busy being depressed or mad that someone took credit for their work.

No of course the zen thing for me to tell you at this point is to be the better person when you find yourself being taken advantage of in a situation like this.  That would be the proper way to handle things.  But to hell with that.  If someone takes credit for my work I get pissed.  And I start looking for ways to let everyone know it.  Of course you have to know when to pick your battles, but seriously, I don’t like that and I will let you know about it.  However, the one thing I can do add a little zen back to that is to promise I will not take credit for other people’s work.  My career is not that important nor anything else.  You know, unless like the person who should get credit is already dead… and there’s no way for it to come back to me.  I never said I was stupid or naive.  Just honest.  Mostly.

Friday is messy

Friday, July 25th, 2008

Well it’s Friday and the work day is almost done.  I may get to the weekend faster than my friends in the States but I also get Monday faster too.  It’s a win-lose situation.

I’ve spent part of the day packing up my personal items from my office to be shipped back to the St. Louis office.  My technical books and toys and decorations and paperwork and toys.  I have lots of toys.  It’s been kind of a sad day.

Which led to my activities at lunch time.  I skipped lunch to stay in my office like I often do and I drug out some writing.  I opened up a story that I had started back in February and edited/added about 500 words during my break.  Oddly enough, even though I went from 1,040 words to almost 1,500 words… the story didn’t get progressed at all.  I have an idea of where I think I want to go with it now.  Before I had just written the setup and had no idea what was going on or where it would end.  Now I think I’ve gotten that part ready.  I just have to remember it long enough to get it written.

But my point was that I was kind of sad about packing and that sparked me into writing.  I’m wondering if I only write when I’m sad?  I don’t think so though.  I blazed through the first four days of zombie stories and I don’t remember being sad then.  So I’m probably just jumping to conclusions.  Which, for those of you who know me, is very unlike me.  Yeah.

Anyway, hopefully I will get Chapter One of that story finished up pretty soon and unleash it on everyone here.  Or I may wait till I get a few chapters written so I don’t leave everyone hanging like I did with the zombie stories.  I will finish those zombie stories some day.  At least the ones I have outlined already.  I just haven’t been inspired on those like I was before.  Not sure what was different then but I wish I could duplicate it.  That was awesome.

For those of you interested in my previous writings, click on the Writing category on the right side of the page.