May 26, 2013

Remember

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First World Problems


My computer's been clunky lately and Thursday morning when I got home from work, the only thing that displayed on the screen was a folder labeled with a question mark.

Having no patience for such introspection from a very expensive appliance, I attempted various Mac-specific fixes to no avail. I dropped it off at Mac Specialists on the way to check on my Mom (who was in the hospital getting her Gall Bladder removed).  Friday I was informed that the hard drive is shot. Fortunately, it was still under warranty from the time it got repaired after being struck by lightning. I should get it back late next week.

In the interim, Kuroi, my netbook with the tiny keyboard, has been crashing with demoralizing regularity. Last night I had a friend look at it and discovered that MacAfee was dueling with the Norton  that was bundled with the machine but was ostensibly never activated.

It's slow and I can't do frame grabs with this set-up, but I can actually poke about online for the first time since Wednesday night.

In other news, after a brief scare where she tried to pick up her grandaughter and opened herself up,  Mom is doing much better, though it is a chore to keep her from lifting anything.

Dad goes under the knife in two weeks for a hernia operation. I'll be super mister butler man for six weeks thereafter, so I' withdrew (early enough for a refund) from the two summer classes I was taking. I may take them in one of the later summer sessions.

Anyway,  as compensation for having sat through that banality bombardment, here is Kem Kem's rendering of 'Rei' Yamamoto, from Yamato 2199..


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May 21, 2013

OK. Here Is The Real Scoop on This Story

The story going around with this pic is that some HOA would not let a fellow fly an American flag  and this was his response...



Now HOAs  are a pernicious blight upon our civilization and and those that run them and think they are swell are bad and should feel bad.  Thus there is a lot to like about this story. However, this story breaks down upon the slightest thought. The quidnuncs that form Home Owners Associations are going to have as one of their first despicable acts, strict rules on what colors their victims can paint their houses. Thus this made little sense unless the fellow was just going whole hog in an effort to stick his thumb in their eye.



It turns out after 2 minutes of image searching that this is actually a dispute with a local historical society. Historical societies that enforce repair regulations are like HOAs with government sanction so this is actually even a better story than the fake (assuming Captain America here doesn't end up in jail).

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Footprints of a Monster

I got this grim but interesting image from The Daily Mail, which has some amazing and very sad pictures.of the tornado damage in Oklahoma and Kansas.



It's bad....and there are more storms on the way.
more...

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May 20, 2013

Ubu Roi (Bumped)

Anime Blogger Ubu Roi has had a rough year.


A completely accurate rendering of Ubu in a top hat and parachute*.

Ubu is steadily progressing though, and he has advanced up the tiers of Hell from STROKE to SPINAL INJURY.

Note that this is still, as our Dear Leader would say, "sub-optiomal". 

Today he finds out if he has to go down one level to BACK SURGERY so send him your good wishes. Oh, and prayers are not to be disincentivised.

If I'm not the only one unable to comment there please feel free leave your words of encouragement here.

UPDATE: He will require spinal surgery (ugh).

*and wig and shawl and dress and freaky-deaky anime mask.

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A Bad Day

...to be on Oklahoma or Kansas.



Witchita TV station gets hit


It looks like it just missed Don.


UPDATE:
 It's bad.
It's REALLY really bad.

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May 19, 2013

Gargantia Episode 7

In this episode we learn a few things.
Though its area has been reduced considerably by the grinding and pressure the now thawed global glaciers exerted as well as the rising sea levels of the now completely melted icecaps, there IS dry land...just not much.


Note the chart behind Ridget

We find out who the staff are that surround Ferrock most of the time. They are the leaders of the three other major fleets that have signed contracts to join with Gargantia. They signed a renewable contract submitting their external affairs to Gargantia, acknowledging the associated policies and the fact that Ferrock is in overall charge but they directly run their own fleets.



We find out that Whale Squid are held in high esteem by the populace of Gargantia and attacking them is considered a faux pas on the order of killing an albatross and is sufficiently bad luck to have anyone that does it risk becoming a pariah.

If you saw the last episode you can probably guess how we found that out......oops.

We learned some other things too....



Wow.

What's neat about this is that there don't seem to be any real villains. Even Pinyon's motivations while certainly ambitious are not entirely without merit. If the ruins/wreckage pan out then it could indeed be a boon for all humanity. Ledo is actually trying to save everyone and Ferrock and Ridget have perfectly reasonable reasons to doubt him.


It does raise some questions:


This is a very well thought out story so far.  I'm really, really enjoying this show.
more...

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Episode7 Attack on Titan

After the horror and flashback to yet more horror in the previous two episodes this one begins with a somewhat upbeat revelation...As far as is known there were no civilians eaten by the giants! Everyone made it through the gates before they were closed except the soldiers fighting the delaying action. The military, however has suffered mightily and as the episode begins Mikasa is going back to rejoin her friends  and assist in the survivors in an orderly retreat.  She arrives to find Sasha Potato Girl trying to rally a bunch of thoroughly demoralized troops, which include Armin.


And then,  Mikasa's eyes...just sort of die.



I must say this about the artists in this show. They really have the portrayal of dead, soulless eye's down pat.




I mean they've nailed it. The stills don't quite do the effect of this justice. While not particularly graphic the dead thousand yard stares in this episode are haunting in a way that really stays with you.



This episode ends with our protagonists pretty much in the same position as when it began, but a lot happened in between their making little progress. This battle is in it's third episode, and yet it doesn't seem to be dragging yet....which is unusual.

Mikasa had a moment of introspection that was interesting in that it had two aspects. On the one hand she determined that she is not going to give in to despair and she will fight to the bitter end. This is pretty straightforward and while well stated and inspiring it's not really unusual. What was unusual was the other thing she concluded. She reflected upon the fact that she's in a defacto leadership position and reflects on how this entails a good deal of DOWNWARD s well as upward loyalty.

 Mikasa has been portrayed throughout the show as a very decent person, but she really does grow in this episode even as she dies on the inside. There aren't many shows where this has come to the fore and off the top of my head I can think of only three other fictional fantasy female leaders who have had this virtue. Meia Gisbourne and the Captain in Van Dread, and to a slightly lesser extent Bellows in Gargantia.  This may not be a focus of the series but it is was refreshing to see this ethical point addressed.

There was also plenty of dystopic horror, and gruesomely gruesome gruesomeness, so the show hasn't had a sudden shift in tone...it's still hard to watch. But it remains intelligent and I note that nothing in this show has been extraneous...so that crazy ass giant means something.



Also, for those who've been watching the show : what happened to the key?

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May 18, 2013

The March of Technology

I don't know WHERE I got this. It was in my unsorted .gif folder.
It's interesting though as it does show how music media evolved over 27 years and how fast the changes became in the 2000s.


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The Visible Effects of Bird Flu in Hong Kong

Golly! I wasn't expecting THAT.



Via Wonderduck
...who probably needs your condolences right now.

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