Tibetan Party at Dr.'s house

December 29, 2005

The Dr. invited me his apartment for a Tibetan party tonight. I had a much better time than I imagined. For me, I got to see the assorted friends of the family again, which was good.

I ate a Tibetan bean curry, very nice, as well as the usual staples of the Dr.’s house: vegetable gyoza, imported cheese, and spicy potatoes.

No new redesign yet

December 22, 2005

I woke up this morning totally stoked about redesigning a whole new front page for Jacked-in. I even paid $10 for a new ready-made theme. It’s sweet. Except….it’s less than 800 pixels wide with no ability to widen it!! So it’s useless. Even worse, there are totally no other themes that I like either. I don’t know what to do now. I doubt anyone can recommend some other RapidWeaver theme sites?

An uncharacteristically productive Monday . . .

December 20, 2005

Whenever I have daytime free time I easily find ways to waste it. This afternoon I only wasted about 10% of my free time, a remarkably small percentage. For the first time ever, I not only prepped for all my lessons this week, but also my lessons next week. That means I’ve got nothing to teach the lessons themselves until next year. Nice. So that means when I am not teaching, I am actually free to do what I want, rather than having to prep for the next lesson.

Now the subroutine my mind pursues when the task at hand does not require 100% concentration (which is often), is what layout and theme to use for the home–home page for Jacked-in. It’s been basically the same since I first coded it entirely by hand back in 1998! I’ve changed the colors and added prettier table borders and a few new features, but the home–home page is largely as it has been, i.e. a 3-frame design.

I hope to have the radical redesign of Jacked-in completed by mid-January. The revamped site will feature several new features, including a Written by Jason page featuring ALL of my creative writing: poems, spontaneous prose essays, and selected e-mail writings. I may include all my academic writing as well, but I don’t want bastards cut & pasting my papers and handing them in and getting easy A’s. I’ll have to put some non-cut & paste protection into it.

And I’ll finally get a good selection of all my photos I’ve taken around Asia and elsewhere on a dedicated & comprehensive page that will include stories and background for each photo. I’ve wanted to do this for years.

Sack time.

Last FRISBEE Sunday for 2005

December 19, 2005

Although I didn’t realize it all day, this Sunday was the last ultimate frisbee Sunday at Futako-Tamagawa for 2005. The day started out with a VERY arctic wind blowing all over the city and the field. Of course it didn’t bother me much as I was decked out in Gore Windstopper clothing, but it did affect frisbee throwing. However, by 3pm the wind had died down and it was a beautiful, crisp afternoon to finish ultimate for the year.

Two players also bid farewell to their time at Futako: Tomas & Jaime

Had another good time playing Hearts with Jesse and Haru (and Yumiko this time too) at the Mega-Starbucks after disc. I foolishly didn’t put down a 3 of clubs, which probably cost me 2nd place. But, I finally got to throw down the Queen of Spades, a most satisfying feeling.

See you all at the field again on January 8, 2006!

KING KONG review

December 18, 2005

I heard about the “slow” 1st act, but had no problems with all the pre-Venture setup. I loved the introduction of Kong and Ann’s first scenes with him (actually all their scenes together). I liked the angle of having Kong be much more ape-like in his acting, and congrats should go to Andy Serkis who will go largely unheralded again I’m sure (anyone in the know knows that Gollum’s acting was really Andy’s, same with Kong). I certainly will be pounding my chest a helluva of a lot from now on. Totally love the quick chest pound Kong gives before taking on the last V-Rex.

…Seeing them slide around the corner showed me that WETA hasn’t improved their skill since the flooding of Isengard, as both effects have the same flaws. However, I heard that PJ rushed Kong into release and was editing it up until a few days before it opened. Still, it looked comical, and the whole scene could have been much shorter. Is there any need for a movie to borrow the ‘raptor scene from Jurassic Park still?

…If you’ve seen the LOTR movies, then there’s no mistaking that Peter Jackson is the director of KONG as well. … I love his sweeping camera shots (thank you CGI) and his close-up emotional shots of characters’ faces, but I can’t stand the way he edits fight scenes and most of all can’t stand his use of slow motion for almost every dramatic moment. … in real-time in the face of the oncoming bi-planes, I think it would have had more impact than the slo-mo shot used by PJ. This is one credit to Lucas as a director, there is not a single slo-mo shot in all of SW.

Once back in New York I had a lump in my throat the whole time, even though I of course knew how it would all end. … I think pretty much every time Kong pounded his chest I did so in my seat as well. Hell, I even swooped my hand to catch Ann during the V-Rex fight scene because I knew it was coming having seen the trailer multiple times.

…Like many though that refuse to be controlled, refuse to quiet the animal inside of them, in the World of Men such beings are not allowed to exist.

DREAM: Protecting poor kids with Wolverine

December 17, 2005

The dream began with me as an assistant-teacher for a bunch of elementary to middle school aged kids, of apparent poor backgrounds. … So for some reason I started throwing water balloons at the kids faces! However, none of them exploded, just bounced, like in the picture. Their regular teacher was very strict and they were afraid of her/him.

Then I was dreaming I was a robot like in the CGI movie, “Robots.” I started out as a klunker, but upgraded to a high-tech one so I could “blend-in.”

Then I was back to human and in some huge mall, really huge. The kids were in danger from their abusive teacher and I had to get them across to a safe room. Luckily, I had some help from . . .

…He especially didn’t like the students’ teacher and I think even wanted to kill him/her. Other X-Men showed up to help too. All of them were in street clothes though, not their costumes. Storm froze the floor and then someone else blew the kids to the other side with some strong breath. I had to go back with some of the older kids to get a forgotten book or something!

…Earlier I had dreamed of playing basketball outside.

…A damn crow woke me up a couple times this morning, prompting me to wish I had a Chinese star to throw at it with violent intent. They used to be a much bigger problem at my former 3rd floor apartment, but here up on the 11th floor they aren’t often a problem.

Stop making robots!

December 17, 2005

Living in Tokyo one often sees reports of the latest robots being developed by Honda, or Mitsubishi, etc. I guess these people have never read a book or seen a movie? It’s really starting to freak me out. How can the people making them not see it?

Seriously. This dude is DANCING with a robot with the face of Marilyn Monroe!

DREAM: Old high school friends (again)

December 16, 2005

Hours slept: 7.5 hours (3am to 10:30am)

Had dreams about my old high school friends again last night. I often do. There were 5 of us. We called ourselves “the Posse.” In my dream last night I saw everyone (Rick, Terry, Steve, Ferrer) even though those latter 2 bastards have dropped out of communication a long time ago. Obviously my subconscious is greatly affected by this since I see them in dreams quite regularly, at least twice a month.

Last night’s dream had us getting ready to go somewhere by car. I remembered looking out of Steve’s apartment’s window down at my own car, which was a kind of SUV I think, and realizing what a terrible parking job I did, the ass end of the car was sticking into the other lane, but this was only apparent from a certain viewing angle, which in real life wouldn’t exist. Some fool was trying to park their car in a spot next to mine, and I remarked to someone, “I always just park in the easiest space, even if it’s not the closest,” then realized the fool was having difficulty because of my poor parking job.

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