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< Seraphim >

Seraphim's little origami page

"Moving Violations"

Monday - February 4, 2002

[Seraphim] - 08:11:02 - [link here]

T minus 12 days and counting.

As if going to grad school full time, working full time, and life in general with Piro isn't hectic enough, I decided to uproot us and change our abode. The actual impetus to move occurred before Christmas. I was INNOCENTLY walking around and walked full speed into a large mailing tube of posters protruding from under the coffee table. My first non-swear words after determining no bones had been broken were "We're moving." When Piro saw that he would have his own work/gamer room to lock the cats out, he was on board with the idea.

He even got into the idea of shopping for appliances. I was looking at an Eco sensitive front loading washer with 1050 RPM spin cycle - he liked it too - because it was l33t - yes, a Kenmore Elite. Only Piro would need a l33t washer and dryer. A washer and dryer, I'm giddy. I hate the laundromat. I hate laundromats even more than the can recycling centers they have in Michigan. I recycle all the glass, metal, paper, and plastic I can and I do that for free. I would save and recycle cans without a deposit just to avoid those horrid counters. In Georgia you could crush the cans and take them to a local fire station that would take them to a recycler and donate the money to a hospital burn unit. Here they can't be dented in the least or the barcode is invalid. It is a big hassle and it doesn't recycle non-deposit cans - like for juices - and you STILL have to go to the recycle center.

We got hit hard by an ice storm last week. Our neighborhood was decimated. So many trees lost - and a few cars. If I would have had comprehensive on my car I would have parked it under one of them. As it is I only have PLPD and that wouldn't even pay for towing its crushed carcass away. We didn't lose power but my folks, sister and some friends were out for several days. I think we should move to the desert when I am out of school. You never have to worry about an ice storm knocking down Saguaros unto your house or power lines.

Although a good deal of Ann Arbor was without power the University was up and running. Every campus in Southern and Northern Michigan could close but the Ann Arbor campus would be open as usual. My undergrad college was the same. It was run by Dominican nuns who figured we had God as our co-pilot while commuting. I was driving home in a snow storm one evening after class and unfortunately God was not co-piloting for the dame in the brand new Mustang and who crossed the center line and totaled my car. It was a crappy car but it looked something like one of those old fashioned steamer trunks with all the stickers on it. I had stuck all the bumper stickers I had collected from every country I visited in Europe (plus a few anti drunk driving and other socially responsible subjects). Those were my more hedonistic days. I figure the Rabbit didn't disintegrate into a million pieces around me (picture Wiley Coyote sitting on ground with steering wheel in hand) because of them. This car was so old it was almost before safety belts but definitely before crumple zones and air bags.

The car I have now is airbagless and it is from the time manufacturers actually thought automatic shoulder belts were a good idea. Silly manufacturers - next they came up with SUVs which are the scourge of the planet. If people want to drive something that big and really compete out there on the road, they should just upgrade to a semi cab and trailer. To quote a dear friend of mine, "Go big or stay home." Piro and I were driving in the Detroit area and witnessed an Explorer Sport Expo where professionals were teaching Explorer owners to drive on large mounds of dirt they had piled up. How does one get to be an expert at driving on fake dirt mounds? We laughed our asses off. Really, what comes next? They'll be slapping metallic paint called Desert Patina and vanity plates on busses and selling them to yuppies for their outdoor adventures.

Ah well, time to think about a new car after we move. Hopefully piro won't hurt himself like he did last time. That boy worries me sometimes.

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< Dom >

Join the Million Maximo March or be reduced to a sack of bones!

"Maximo, Mail and Misc."

Saturday - February 9, 2002

[Dom] - 19:34:00 - [link here]

First things first. Some of you who attended Anime Expo 2001 mayremember what I termed the "MillionMoogle March", a display of silliness in large groups. But the thing is, I don't really like moogles that much,unless they're stuffed and being held by a Lulu. So I want to outdo those moogles. I unveil the MillionMaximo March. The aim? Not only to be absolutely sillyand have an excuse to run around in underwear, but tooutnumber those moogles by about two to one--there aresixteen in that picture, so I need thirty willing andshameless men to run around a convention in nothing butheart-patterned boxer shorts, maybe a skin-colored leotardfor decency's sake (or whatever decency exists when you runaround a convention in your knickers) and a classic Ghouls'n' Ghosts or Maximo weapon. For the forgetful, the listincludes the following: dagger, crossbow, axe (single ordouble bladed), sword and shield, lance, scythe/sickle,shuriken, torch, Goddess Ring, double-edged axe, andshuriken. Also, if we can get just one guy to costume asthe magician, and carry a lot of stuffed ducks... but nah,it's for another time. This Million Maximo March isscheduled for AX and/or Otakon--anyone who'sinterested, or just morbidly curious, e-mail me. I need atleast vague numbers.

Now, on to my mail. After getting a small amount ofquality mail from that comic book rant, I went back in timeand sorted through some of the mail I've gotten that isn'tso flamey it's funny. For example, here's one fromShidoshi about my rant waaaay back in September or so oflast year about GameGO! magazine. It's a fair defense ofthe whole thing, so I would feel bad if I didn't post itSOME time:

Yeah, so you wrote about the topic two months ago... but Ijust stumbled across it today, and thought I'd write you aquick note. NOT a quick note to defend the mag or anything,just a comment I wanted to relate to you. If you didn'tlike the first (and last *heh*) issue of GameGO!, well, Ididn't either, and I worked for the thing. Well, let mechange that - I DID like it, but I also found it to be atotal mess of a magazine. Simply talking about the layout,there were so many problems in that first issue that Icould have screamed. It was a shame that issue #2 nevercame out, because my little anime section totally blew therest of the mag out of the water. *laughs*

Back to the point I was going to make. The magazine WAS amess, but it was also 100% a labor of love. The money toget the first issue out was scraped up from wherever theycould find it, and to be honest it was like two peopleputting the entire mag together with the other staffersjust chipping in here and there. Every member of the stafflived in different places - the two main editors lived oneach coast, for example. Having working in a magazineoffice environment, it is enough trouble putting together amagazine when you've got everyone in the same building. Theway GameGO! was working, it was total chaos. Which, ofcourse, no doubt helped to lead to its very quick downfall.Issue #2, which was totally finished, was greatly improvedover the first, but still had some problems that needed tobe worked out had it lived on.

The way everything worked for that mag, it honestly wasvery much like a fanzine getting professionally printed.The situation wasn't even CLOSE to being of a pro-magazinelevel behind the scenes, and while I disagree with a lot ofopinions that were stated in the magazine pertaining to whoit was targeting and the such, it was an attempt by acouple of people to make something a bit more honest afterhaving gotten burned out by how fake so much of video gamepublishing really is.

Like I said, not trying to defend the mag or say that youwere wrong in your opinions on it, I just thought you mightfind it interesting to hear a bit of the story from someoneon the other side of the situation. As much of a mess as itall was, I also thought the mag was doing some damn coolstuff as well. I mean, a guide to how to play mahjong gamesin a US magazine? Gotta give GameGO! SOME credit at theleast for that. ^_^

I think I'll let that speak for itself. I also got ane-mail from one of Shirt Guy Tom's co-workers regarding thepossibility of me visiting the Shirt Guy at the workplace. I haven't taken him up on the offer yet, but maybe in MarchI will descend upon Tom when he least expects it--meaning Iwill probably announce it in this rant section.

In addition, I got a mail from a guy at THQ, saying thatBritney's Dance Beat is actually a good game, in spite ofthe brand name. That may be true, but I don't think Iwould ever be able to look at myself in the mirror again ifI promoted a game named Britney's Dance Beat in thiscolumn. But of course, the real reason is: The Red Factionextends life. The Red Faction must flow...

And finally, I come to the actual e-mails about comic books. After talking to a few of my friends, I agree that at least two episodes of Sandman deserve mention as needing the comic book format to work properly, or at least are better from it: Ramadan and A Hope in Hell. You may have your opinions, but these are the ones I've decided on for now, pending re-reading of my friend's trade paperbacks. Rising Stars, meanwhile, is a meandering story that would work just as well as a movie (especially since a movie would hopefully cut out that dreadful Chicago arc). Preacher, I admit, I haven't read yet, but I liked Garth Ennis' work on the Punisher, so I'll eventually pick it up when time and budget permit. Poison Elves I haven't really been interested in--mostly because no one tells me what it's about. ElfQuest I read the first book of and didn't quite get into. Other comics, I do like, but not always. It's a case-by-case basis, and based on what I'm looking for, too. I've always been a fan of Spider-man for the dialogue, for example.

Did I miss anything? Well, if I did, I'll certainly hear about it, so g'bye for now.

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