Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Randomly Coherent, or Coherently Random: Take Your Pick

There's a certain forum thread that I frequent (I'm sure most if not all readers of this blog know which thread I'm talking about), and I'm always amused with how random - yet coherent - convos there turn out.
Someone posts a link to a poorly made "horror" video clip, which gives a new meaning to horror flicks.

H: It's one of the worst computer generated ghosts I've seen in my entire life. Bad wardrobe too, like Mel Gibson can make a movie out of it.

R: If you want people to get really scared tell them one of those "HONEY, I'M TWO WEEKS LATE" kind of stories. I almost crap my pants every time I think of hearing that line.

H: @R - Yah, me too. Especially when I haven't done anything at all.

Me: - Immaculate Conception ftw. That, or it's the Invisible Man's fault.

H: Yah. It's God, most probably.

Me: Anyone can be a "god". That pet name is actually overused, what with people calling others "god" while in the throes of having sex. Damn it, god. Oh god.

R: Next time people ask you about biblical figures put to the test by God, instead of looking at Job and Abraham, look at Joseph, a carpenter whose greatest achievement in life is the one nail he didn't pound.

J: ghost clips > pregnancy > God

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Last time I heard...

the word "friend" wasn't something to be taken for granted.

If I call you my friend, then consider yourself special...in my case, at least.

But does the same thing apply to me if you call me your friend?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Terrorist: a play with semantics

So I jump into the latest (and justified) bandwagon of blogging about the recent Glorietta 2 bombing. Before you read on, here's a disclaimer: I do not claim to know who are behind the bombings, nor do I even entertain drawing conspiracies in my head. I do not have enough information needed to draw feasible conclusions, unlike some people who are too air-headed that believe that everything they learn from the media are credible.

So, those who think that I agree with the the theory "Philippine Government are behind the Glorietta bombing incident" after they read my post should fucking go back to school and brush up on Critical Reading.

Capice? Read on, then.

Here's the half-assed gist: a bomb of yet-to-be-determined substance - though the reports now lead to C4 - exploded in a section of a mall located in the business hub of the Philippines. The strangest thing is that the bomb exploded in a less-than-ideal location for a bombing, thus scoring a smaller number of casualties compared to other major acts of terrorism. That doesn't mean to say that its any less tragic: people got hurt, people died, and families are now grieving.

Of course, conspiracy nuts are now happily swarming in the internets, with theories both well-thought out and half-assed. One of the more popular line of reasoning goes like this: the location of the bomb - a near-deserted restaurant delivery route - obviously shows that the perpetrator's aim is not to kill the most possible number of people.

So, who could the culprit be? Many people thus hypothesize that the bombing is a ploy to divert the public's attention from the ongoing scandal the goverment is currently up in shit's creek in; some others believe that this is a ploy for the president to be able to implement Martial Law. Either way is possible, it could be something else. I don't care either which way.

With those theories in mind, people have ruled out the well-known terrorist groups as the cause of the bombing, and are slowly drawing lines towards the government or the military (among other suspects) as the culprits. Thus, conspiracy nuts are now echoing this line over and over again: this is not the work of a terrorist.

This is not the work of a terrorist. I repeat, this is not the work of a terrorist.

Which brings me to the whole (way overdue) point of my post. What's a terrorist, then? Does the term terrorist automatically bring the image of turban-wearing, firearm-toting grunts who go off and blow themselves up in the name of justice? Are people working behind well-polished desks and are clean-shaven not put into the terrorist category, even if they pulled the strings that lead to deaths of many people?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, then you may want to reconsider your concept of terrorism. Let's turn to the somehow-reliable wikipedia:
It has also been argued that the political use of violent force and weapons that deliberately target or involve civilians, and do not focus mainly on military or government targets, is a common militant, terrorist, or guerrilla tactic, and a main defining feature of these kinds of people.
Its just a shame that those who believe that the government and/or the military are behind the bombing incident repeatedly say the words "This is not the work of a terrorist." What differentiates vicious necktie-wearing personnel from scruffy, dirt-crusted terrorists who use the same means in order to achieve their ends, then?

The main point is this: those who use civilians in order to gain leverage of any kinds are terrorists. Implying that the government or the military cannot be termed as terrorists - if it is indeed true that they are the culprits - just gives them an unwarranted boost above the more common terrorist stereotype. It's unfair. Let's call a spade a spade.

Tl;dr - anyone who kills civilians to achieve any kind of leverage are terrorists.

Yes, this post is basically ambling along semantics, similar to the way some Christians are - quite wrongly - miffed with the way most people chose to replace "Christ" with "X" in the word Christmas. But fuck, it's irritating.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Tartolz madness: Rhythm Bits

I was checking out the intarweb when I happened upon something...well, I couldn't quite yet describe it in words. I just found the latest version of the cute Walkie Bits - still unlickable as ever - and they don't race this time.

Walkie Bits: Rhythm Bits are cute candy-looking turtles that respond quite appropriately to sound; they stand up on their two hind feet and dance (yes, dance!) when they hear pleasant sounds, and they fall back on their four stubby feet when they hear serious-sounding tones. I'm not sure what that means, or what sounds can even be categorized as "serious", but I guess they're scared of gruff voices or the turtles know when the sound is not really appropriate for dancing.

I...want. >_<

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

New banner! :3

I got a new banner thanks to RB's mod Security Guard, who noticed that I needed a blog banner that's more fitting to the "tartolicious" theme. Yes, I know its cute, so no stealie or else the ebul overlords pwn your sorry asses >:E

Thanks, Mod SG! Yes, delicious cake is delicious.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Anime First Impressions: Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro

When I first found out that Shonen Jump's trippy detective Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro would have his own anime series starting this month, I was more than excited. So yes, I even braved the raws as soon as it came out (but since a subber already picked it up, I'm going to wait for the subs for the succeeding episodes).

Not sure what to make of Nightmare's OP theme for Neuro, DIRTY. It took me awhile for me to warm up to Nightmare's Death Note OP, so it may be the same case.

I was a bit disappointed to find out that the Neuro anime started with the mediocre third case in the manga, the one with the chef on steroids. But Neuro fangirl that I am, I didn't mind until I reached the middle of the episode. And that was when it bothered me: the anime's first episode is nothing more than lackluster. Sure, anime!Neuro played his part as the insane, abusive and domineering demon very well, and Yako wasn't bad too.

Check out this manga spread. It's not just Neuro who's plain insane - the characters who are found out to be the culprits behind murders and even the friggin' backdrop becomes insane. Somehow, the anime wasn't quite able to capture that. We're just treated with slapstick scenes of Neuro and Yako, and that's it.

I was actually expecting something akin to Samurai Champloo's marijuana episode. Damn, I loved that. Too bad Neuro's pilot episode fell flat.

But hey, it's just the first episode, and the second episode is already out. 'll still check it out, if only to hear Koyasu Takehito's voice again.

Anime Review: Mononoke

(or, It's Fangirl-ing Tiem Nao)

My anime watch list is getting shorter and shorter, what with Death Note and Darker than BLACK already finished. So you can imagine my chagrin when Mononoke finally ended its 12-episode run, which is a shame: this series clearly deserves more love, and more episodes just like its tamer - yet just as awesome - twin Mushishi.

Mononoke's semi-episodic tales revolve around a mysterious, gaudily-garbed man known only as Medicine Seller (or kusuriuri-san, druggist, Apothecary in some fansubs). He wanders around in the pretext of selling medicine, but he actually is in a quest to kill Mononoke - evil spirits that feed on emotions. To exorcise them he needs to discover what the Mononoke's katachi (form), makoto (truth), and kotowari (reason), in order for him to unsheathe his spiritual blade.

One of the major selling points in the anime is its artsy-fartsy visuals, which is highly reminiscent of Gankutsuou, Gonzo's take on The Count of Monte Cristo. However, that is not to say that you'll like it immediately; you'll either love it or hate it. They did manage to pull it off, with its psychedelic storybook-style illustrations and effects that do well in depicting emotions.

For instance, the Nue arc has the entire backdrop and all of the characters, save for the Medicine Seller, in drab monotones. But whenever the main characters in the Nue arc sniff the scents in a smelling game, their forms become brightly colored, only to once again fade into black-and-white when the scent leaves them.

Aside from the visuals, Mononoke also shines with its stories that mainly focus on people having to confront their darker pasts or emotions that they hide deep within themselves. That's the main formula of the anime: encounter with the Medicine Seller, people get killed, Medicine Seller determines the deaths are caused by Mononoke, MS (let's shorten his name now) determines the katachi, makoto, and kotowari of the Mononoke, and exorcises them.

It may sound routine, but flat-out boring it is not. Some of the stories are heart-rending, particularly Zashiki-Warashi arc, which tackles abortion (no, this is not pro-life propaganda, bitches) and the Noppera-bo arc, a confusing yet profound tale of a woman who allegedly killed the abusive family she married into.

About the characters, there is only one recurring cast - the Medicine Seller, of course - save for Kayo who made her first appearance in Ayakashi Bakeneko, where the MS also made his first appearance before getting his own series.

Making the MS very interesting is crucial in the anime, as watchers won't have anyone else to really root for after an arc ends. They did not fail in doing so, fortunately: saying that the Medicine Seller himself is not boring to watch is a bad understatement. We have someone who dresses in bright, happy colors (yes, a lead who is not emo and does not carry any baggage, thank goodness...o wait he does lol), who talks with stranges pauses in his speech in order to emphasize what he's saying, and lugs around carrying various things in his mysterious box, including what could be live octopi and porn magazines. They're supposed to be medicine, people. Medicine.

The anime suffers from a mediocre end, and doesn't really give the series its much-deserved kick-ass ending, as if the finale is just another arc. Does this mean that we'll get to see a second season, then? We'll see.

Obligatory blog and blogger introduction

There's just too many things to do when starting a new blog, and this is one of them (didn't feel like doing this before I uploaded my new template). So, here.

Yes, my name is Mai. Known as Magician in Jeans or Selrotta in the few message boards that I frequent. I'm incredibly bored, which says a lot about my personality. So many things that can be done, so many things to be interested about, and here I am busy being bored.

Why the title? I'm not sure why, myself. Though I am crazy over those robotic turtly turtle overlords, the Walkie Bits (whose existence in my room I owe to Jet). Do you know that those widdle, waddling turtles are out to conquer the world, one by one? They're that badass, those ebul robotic turtle overlords. I worship them.

Actually, the title comes from an actual warning label from the Walkie Bits packaging. The English translation for the warning goes like this: Please do not lick the turtles. Due to the coating on their shells, it is not recommended.

Why a new blog? Because my other blog (Dreaming of Dancing Burritos), hosted by friendster, sucks. No one can comment without logging into their friendster account. Can you say site whoring? Can you say it louder? There ya go.

Why now? At first, I thought it was just me being too reluctant to leave a blog that has so much content already. I'm not sure if one can import a friendster blog to blogspot, but meh. Then I realized it was because I was procrastinating. Again.

So yeah slowpoke, etc. etc.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The obligatory......first

post. So I say:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.