Saturday, April 28, 2007

Loose ends

Like I said, if you went to Japanese Basics at AB last weekend, let me know what you thought.

I wish I had the money (and the time) to do the anime con circuit during the summer, plus I'll be going to Shanghai to study which will cut into a good part of the summer break. I have to do SOME research so I can publish something and live off the profits and one day fulfill my dream of living the rest of my life in a hotel room.

One pet peeve I have of anime cons: don't pretend the elevator's full when you know it's not. I know you got your cosplay props and luggage and you really need the extra air to ventilate the fact that people don't know what deodorant is, but it is one minute out of your life when you're in that elevator. And I'm too tired at times and my bed and television and room service are waiting for me.

If you've been keeping track of my advanced Japanese lesson units, three of them should be fully complete by the end of next week.

Moving on to's nice that New York's at the top of not just the conference, but the entire league. I only watched the first half at the away HQ at Stout (had to rush home, only had time to take apart an order of onion rings and soda), and I wish I saw Freeman's goal. I guess it is starting to look like Wynne was sorta behind schedule on his development. Maybe Freeman was worth it.

The next article I write on will include the new Red Bull Meter. Keep track of that. I'd elaborate, but right now I have other things to do.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Something about them, that's for sure

Have you seen that new Irish Spring commercial? Those "lasses" look like they're homeless. Of course they don't have dirt on their face, they're sitting on a river.

I'm watching TDS right now. If John McCain is such a straight talker, why does he need to keep clarifying himself?

EDIT - McCain had to filibuster all interview long with GOP talking points in order to keep from actually answering any hard questions. Unlike the last interview with the senator last year, Jon Stewart did not let up. Good for him.

Higher standards

The US Office of Special Counsel will begin an investigation into Karl Rove's efforts to direct the federal bureaucracy to help support Republicans in the political process. They will search for any coercion on Rove's part, which would be in violation of the Hatch Act signed into law to protect federal employees from political persuasion.

If Rove is the genius that Republicans believe that he is, the investigation will find that he committed no crime, and the administration will be legally off the hook.

In another branch of the government, Bush lent his support to US Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez, saying:

...As the hearings went forward, it was clear the attorney general broke no law, there's no wrongdoing...
In the best-case scenario for the administration, both Rove and Gonzalez will be found not guilty, for no crime existed.

Republicans will be happy. The decent American people who honestly thought they voted for a good and honest man, on the other hand, should not.

Bush came into office on the promise to "clean up Washington," whatever that means. His Supreme Court-sanctioned victory came off the heels of a half-decade long assault on the Democratic Party for perceived immoralities that went all the way to the top. The phrase "higher standard" was part of the Christian conservative vernacular.

It is becoming readily apparent that the higher standards Republicans demanded and believed they got by electing Bush only applies to Democrats. Either that, or immorality doesn't apply to defrauding the American public or promoting widespread inequities in the last enduring democracy in the world.

At least they hope they broke no laws.


"Do you think it's time?"

Dennis Kucinich has no shot at becoming President. He is Ralph Nader with a real feel for the political landscape, but without the possibility of being a spoiler in November.

That said, Kucinich is the only prominent Democrat that should file charges of impeachment against Vice President Dick Cheney. It is not cowardice for someone the likes of Clinton or Obama or even Edwards to dodge any talk of impeachment. For better or for worse, the Democrats' top tier has to look towards the future and not dwell on the failures of the Republicans' most audacious political power grab since the Civil War and Reconstruction. The sooner the vocabulary of "Permanent Majority" and "neoconservativism" is erased from memory, the better.

In the meantime, perhaps the White House knows things about Iraq that the rest of the world doesn't (possible, but not probable, and definitely not important enough that the rest of the world couldn't garner such insight on its own), but the impression remains that Cheney and Bush and all that swore unconditional loyalty before patriotism to country have conducted the Iraq War in a criminal manner that dishonors the soldiers in the field.


Monday, April 23, 2007

I'm home again and feeling right

OK, that's it. I don't think I'll ever want to drive to or through Connecticut ever again (except for that sliver of I-684 and the Merritt Parkway to get to the city, but that doesn't count). Politically, personally and professionally, I have associated CT with so many bad things - all things which have occurred in the eleven months I've been back in America - that the drive through the state on the way to and on the way back from Boston this weekend was just so depressing that any sad music on the radio will send me into the railing. I believe I am developing PTSD now, and now I want a doctor to prescribe to me something that limits exposure to that place.

Yes, I'm exaggerating. But before it's exaggerated, it has to be true first. OK, I'm done ranting.

AB was great. I had a lot of fun holding class in Japanese and fanfiction this weekend. I'll spend this week doing post-mortem while transitioning towards finals, so if you have been to any of my panels and have something to say, by all means, drop a comment or send me an email.

The Mets just can't seem to figure out the Braves. What is their problem?

Altidore could've had a hat trick last night. What is his problem? (kidding, actually...good for him)

Saturday, April 21, 2007

80 in a 65 zone

I was gunned down by police radar on the way to Boston yesterday. $170 ticket. What's the problem in Massachusetts that (1) the fines need to be that high in order to serve as an adequate deterrent and (2) the police chase down the car at the tail end of the flow of traffic?

So yes, obviously I'm still sore about it. Yes, I'm guilty. It's my blog, you're going to let me vent, even if I'm wrong.

But anyways, Anime Boston 2007 has been going well so far. I make 100 copies of handouts for every panel, and we ran out by the first half hour of the main Japanese Basics panel. Three panels to go, and it's already a success!

Spent last night at the hotel bar, with the Red Sox game on, and the bartender happens to be a Yankee fan. The guy next to me was a Yankee fan. I think one of the cooks was a Yankee fan. Despite the Boston myth, it's not exactly like wearing a Mets cap in the Bronx.

Going now. By request, I will upload the presentation slides for Japanese Basics to my website after the convention is over. For now, all the other handouts are at my website

Monday, April 02, 2007

Ian Crocker


Clint Mathis: Take Two

The Galaxy get Beckham, the Fire get Blanco...we get Reyna and Mathis.

And while all four were pivotal for their countries in the 2002 cycle (a PK vs. Argentina, the WC qualification of Mexico, spirited efforts against Mexico and Germany, and a goal against Korea, respectively), it is not possible that the value of the last two combined add up against either of the first two alone.

I like Clint. I think he was under a really bad coach in OZ during the old MetroStars days, and I wanted him to do well in Germany when I didn't have so much contempt for Europe and its corrosive influence on American soccer. But his time has come and, with the likes of Altidore and Wolyniec, even with a less than effective strike force I don't see Mathis being high up on the depth chart.

Last year saw Meola and Jolley finish out their final seasons with NY. With Mathis close behind (Jolley is one year older), NY is slowly developing a history for bringing players on for their final moments in the sunlight of professional soccer.

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