Friday, January 10, 2003

Highlights of the day:

Apparently, the reason why Bart offered to scan my C3 pics is not out of the goodness of her heart but for her own nefarious ends. She was compiling pics of C3 to put on the website and my pictures won't be available to me until she completes her collection. Which goes to show just how far you can trust Bart, especially when she offers to do something out of the ordinary. =)

After playing our D&D game, Cyril and Lloyd suddenly went out and never came back. As me, Elvin, and Jobert were headed for the car, Jobert suddenly receives a phone call.

Cyril: Uh Jobert... we're trapped in the Gonzaga CR.

Apparently, the rest room in Gonzaga had a broken door knob so Cyril and Lloyd couldn't open it from the inside. Me and Jobert had to "rescue" them.

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Thursday, January 09, 2003

First off, here are some links to Zoid summaries to my new acquaintance Dan. Ep Guides has a full listing of the shows and synopsis to the second season. Here's a link if you want summaries of the first season. Overall, Zoid's isn't so bad. It's not the best as clearly upon watching it, there's some serious story flaws. It's cute sometimes but well, most of it is eye candy and basic drama (i.e. predictable). Nothing to celebrate in the story department although the zoids look cool. The good outweighs the bad but this isn't anime you watch if you want depth.

Another guilty pleasure of mine is Beyblade. The one showing on ABS-CBN and not the one on Cartoon Network, mind you. And why not the latter? For one thing, they ruined a perfectly catchy and upbeat opening theme (I haven't seen the original Zoids so I can't say if the US remake is guilty of this). Second, it's bastardized in the way Americans try to market anime (think "Card Captors" and "Battle of the Planets" [not G-Force mind you] when I say bastardize). The whole Beyblade thing was marketed as an olympic event in the Cartoon Network dub. There's the Beyblade Association logo whenever there are tournament battles, invisible commentators that don't really say anything that's not obvious (unless saying "I didn't expect Tyson's Beyblade to do that!" or "it's spinning like crazy!" isn't obvious), and to appeal to the "Pokemon" viewers, there's stats (basically attack, defense, and speed) of each Beyblade whenever there's a challenge. Obviously, these things aren't present in the original Japanese run. When I last checked Ep Guides, a couple of Beyblades episodes haven't been aired.

Moving on to the actual show, Beyblade is okay once you accept the fact that it's a marketing tool and highly exagerrated. Much like the mini-4WD anime Let's & Go, there's the cast of varied characters that make up the Japanese team. And of course, they have unique Beyblades in a world where the sport is popular (the president of America plays Beyblade?!?!) and what is supposed to be an inaminate object left to the mercies of chance is actually controlled by their owners. In the real world, the battling arena is just this plastic bowl. In the anime, the stage can be as complex as The Great Wall of China to the Grand Canyon. And watch the super powers of those Beyblades!

If you're wondering why I'm ranting about all these shows, it's because they're the only shows I watch on TV these days, aside from Drew Carey and Titus, since all the other good shows are either reruns or not available. As for my day, I'm supposed to have only one class. Unfortunately, no one told me that it was a free cut (because of an awarding ceremony or something) so I went to school without going to class the entire day. I had a D&D game though so I spent the day at the caf up playing with the 16th-level cleric who literally faced a horde of demons and a few dragons.

Bought Hikaru no Go #20 for Athene as well as the Hikaru no Go character book (a.k.a. #10.5) but with the typical Chinese attitude, she's declining. And to address Dan's comment, ummm, as much as I want to earn $20,000, the idea of getting paid to marry someone doesn't exactly appeal to me. For one thing, it sounds unethical (well, there are several reasons to marry someone like love, duty, honor, and responsibility, but money isn't exactly a value). Two, there are a lot of Chinese people here so I'm not exactly strained to look for one. I was complaining about my dad's idea since I feel it's prejudiced to be limited to choosing who you can marry or not just because of their race. I've seen perfectly good relationships bog down because of that one differences, where the parents of the Chinese one aren't supportive of their child, even threatening to leave them out of the inheritance if they marry someone not Chinese. (Suffice to say, I'm willing to risk getting disinherited.) Third, as shocking as it sounds, there are Chinese girls who are actually interested in me. Unfortunately, I'm interested in someone else, despite the fact that she doesn't like me. *sob* (Will keep trying though as long as there's 1% change of success!) Fourth, Chinese marriages here in the Philippines can get weird sometimes. I mean the parents of the bride usually "give" the groom a dowry. During one of those Feng Shui rituals related to marriage I was invited in (inviting a number of people who are born on the appropriate Chinese Zodiac to eat at the couple's future home), the dowry involved a Corola Altis car.

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Read on if you want spoilers. If not, skip this.

"The Zoid Eve"

A barely conscious Raven (due to an energy blast dealt by the Deathsaur core Prozen) looks at Shadow who eventually warms up to him. Raven falls unconscious and the Dark Kaizer orders Shadow to kill him. Shadow refuses and is subdued by an energy blast.

Zeke in the Blade Liger tells Van that he knows where Fiona is. Van boards the Blade Liger and head out alone. Thomas asks permission to follow Van but is denied because of his damaged D.Bison. Instead, they send out a Storm Sworder to follow and later on, the Ultrasaurus follows Van.

Fiona emerges at a cavern in the Rarehertz valley where she sees the unconscious bodies of Raven and Reese plus their organoids. Raven addresses her as Alisi Yinette and tells her that only she can open the doors to Zoid Eve. He gives her a mental suggestion and she opens the gates, using her name Fiona to gain access, and the caverns collapse. An energy pulse is released and Van activates his Pulse Guard to ignore this effect but unfortunately, the Storm Sworder following him doesn't.

Fiona and the Dark Kaizer enter a city full of buildings and Prozen explains that this is Zoid Eve and that Zoids weren't originally used as weapons. However, when they were, they found out that it was their true purpose and so fought on even though they didn't have a reason to. Thus the ancient Zoidians made the Death Saur to stop them but it obliterated them instead. In a last ditch effort, the Zoidians tried to destroy Zoid Eve but doing so would result in the end of all zoids so they didn't. The Dark Kaizer wants to resurrect Zoid Eve so that his body, the Death Saur, would revive and it is revealed that the Death Saur Van and the others fought before was merely a clone.

Because of the opening of Zoid Eve, Shadow and Specula reawaken, taking Raven and Reese respectively before the caverns crush them. Meanwhile, Van encounters tons of zoids who were disturbed by Zoid Eve's awakening and he leaps over them and outruns them. However, he soon runs into a damaged Death Stinger that fires its particle gun. The Blade Liger ducks and the zoids following it get destroyed, as well as the particle gun since it explodes.

Hiltz challenges Van despite the loss of his tail. When they clash, Hiltz claims that zoids reach their peak when they are in combat. Van is disgusted, breaks off, and tells Zeke to rescue Fiona. Hiltz is amazed that Van challenged Hiltz without the benefit of an organoid. Van charges, breaking one of the Death Stinger's claws with its blade. Ambient gets called and reconstructs the Death Stinger, including the lost tail. Van charges again and Hiltz fires the charged particle gun but at the last minute, the Blade Liger dodges. It then heads for the Death Stinger.

Meanwhile, the Dark Kaizer orders Fiona to resurrect Zoid Eve but she snaps out of the trance and refuses to do so. Prozen gets angry and releases a burst of energy but is prevented by Zoid Eve's defenses. Fiona then tells the Dark Kaizer that she'll destroy Zoid Eve but Prozen merely remarks that if the ancient Zoidians couldn't do it, so can't she.

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Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Oh wow. Cartoon Network showed the fourth to the last episode of Zoids today. Guess Chaotic Century will end on Monday. So will it be reruns next Tuesday or the next season of Zoids?

Also, Thundercats is showing on Cartoon Network at 4:30 pm and at 12:30 am for those interested.

Anyway, finally managed to interview my father for my feature writing class. Over choosing whether to interview my father or my mother, it goes to the former mainly because he's more honest and direct. Dad isn't really the talkative time and I have to drag him to elaborate, as well as simplify some words for him but at least it's better than figuring out fact from fiction.

Just found out that well, I'm not allowed to marry someone not Chinese for the sole reason that it's tradition.

"So what if one of us [children] marries someone not Chinese?" I ask.

"I don't know." he says.

I guess in the future, both of us might find out. (By the way, I hate listening to my voice... it's awful!)

Also as a recap of today's events, Jobert, Cyril, and I ran into Sacha. She was carrying her all-purpose laptop (which has the Bible documented inside it?!).

"So can I hear your computer talk?" I ask, seriously (hey, she did appear in Digital Tour).

Jobert and Cyril laughs.

"Sure. Here, listen to it." she says as she plugs the earphones.

Jobert and Cyril give a startled look.

Last but not least, here's a synopsis of today's English-dubbed Zoids episode, "The Ancient Memory".













The D.Bison collapses but Van uses the Blade Liger's cannons to make a ditch where it finds cover. The Death Stinger remains immobile but Dr. D advises everyone not to celebrate until they're sure that the Zoid core has ceased to function. When the Gravity Cannon's effect has ceased, the computer diagnoses that the Zoid core is indeed dead, although it's still intact.

Fiona proceeds to drag the D.Bison using the Gustav. Soon, the Death Stinger petrifies but Ambient appears and the Death Stinger recovers. It quickly burrows and causes a tremor. The Ultrasaurus tries to stop it as it heads towards them but fails and topples over. Dr. D asseses that the Death Stinger hasn't fully recovered yet and so its shield's aren't up, thus making it vulnerable to conventional artillery. Unfortunately, they can't deploy units since the hangar is blocked when they toppled over and the elevators don't work.

Van and Irvine keep their distance from the Death Stinger and keep shooting it with their guns. However, Hiltz claims that it does not matter since once Zoid Eve reawakens, everything will be over. Meanwhile, at Zoid Eve, Raven and Reese arrive there and find a capsule containing Shadow. The Dark Kaizer addresses them and tells them that all this time, they've all been his pawns. Raven exclaims that he's not a pawn to Prozen but the Dark Kaizer merely replies that he's not Prozen anymore. He then allows Raven to claim Shadow although he warns him that Shadow might have other ideas. Sure enough, when Shadow finally breaks free, he attacks Raven. Only Specula manages to hold Shadow at bay.

Van and Irvine still keep at it with the Death Stinger but managed to get trapped in its pincers. Thomas fires his Megalomax at the Death Stinger, freeing Van and Irvine. The three then continue to rain gunfire on the zoid. However, Hiltz remains undaunted and utters about Zoid Eve again. Fiona enters a flashback of a demolished city with the silhouette of the Deathsaur but takes a direct hit from the Death Stinger's gunfire. This angers Van and he launches with his Bladeliger's Blade, cutting off the tail and the Death Stinger explodes. Van rushes to Fiona but after muttering some words about Zoid Eve, the Death Stinger turns into light and disappears. Fiona then dissipates into light.

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First off, CCHQ has some new manga titles like Cafe Oji #18, Hikaru no Go #20, Naruto #15, Trigun, Aquarian Age, and Aquarian Orion. There's also the bilingual manga of Ghost in the Shell, which is translated by Frederik Schodt (author of Dreamland Japan and Manga! Manga!). It also costs P1850 or so but it's a worthwhile investment in my opinion since it's only one volume.

Also made downpayments on Death: The High Cost of Living since I feel if I don't get it now (when I have money although I have a lot of debts also), I'll never avail of a copy. Athene right now is trying to dissuade me from buying her a copy of Hikaru no Go. I guess I should know by now that if I'm getting someone a present, I shouldn't tell them what it is so that when I give it to them, they can't refuse (mental note: do not tell Rin what I'm planning to get her for her birthday). Of course that won't work on my crush since she'll flat out reject it. And uh, that has happened before. ^^

Now that I'm through with that, it's back to a day in my life...

Started out by coming to school early so that I can sign up for Philo orals. It was supposed to commence at 11 am so I got to school at 9 am. And then when I get there, there are already people lining up. No problem, I say to myself. Of course two hours later, a lot of people cut in line. And they smoke (which isn't as bad as cutting in line but it's harmful to my health). And this is why the Philippines doesn't prosper. We can all complain about corruption and nepotism but when it comes right down to it, it's the culture we're raised in. It was hard turning down people I know from cutting in line since it's a principle of mine not to let others cut-in, because it'll hurt those behind me. And when I do that, I sometimes come out as the bad guy.

Oh yeah, in relation to that, I was sitting at the library steps last Monday and there's a sign there now that says "no smoking, no eating, no drinking" yet people continued to do those things.

Was supposed to head to CCHQ after signing up for orals but ran into Elbert. Accompanied him because he insisted and later, I ran into Jobert (who's only here until next week) so I couldn't leave him and head for CCHQ.

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Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Just finished watching Zoids: Chaotic Century on Cartoon Network (caught it on tape). It's the last episode of the US run. I wonder if tomorrow they'll show the succeeding episodes (that's four episodes to go), start showing reruns, show the next season, market Beyblade with a every-weekday timeslot, or maybe show the last four episodes as a two-hour special (like what Telesuccess did with Voltes V here in the Philippines). If they opt for the last choice, I feel that would really be strange since well, the Philippine anime community can actually boast that they're ahead when it comes to anime (and that technique of compiling the last four eps into a special...). Look at what the US is raving about now: Yu Yu Hakusho, Ultraman Tiga, Rurouni Kenshin... it's a phase we've gone through before. The same could be said for other popular shows in previous years that seemed to click there, like Gundam Wing (of course it also so happens that Hong Kong, Taiwan, and probably Malaysia is way ahead of the Philippines...).Anyway, came to school early since Jobert hosted his three-session campaign with my character carried over from another campaign of his. Unfortunately, my cleric changed deities so throughout the session, I was deprived of my spells. Gained enough ad-hoc experience to bring my character up to 16th-level. Also, got home late (but me foreseeing this possibility, I set the VCR on timer-recording) because of the group hanging out at Burger King until 6 pm and getting lost on the way home.

Carlos also can't do math. Had to pay him P200 more for Steph's books since he hasn't computed taxes. Which is what I hate about the US system. When a price tag says $6.00, for example, the item doesn't just cost $6.00. Price tags here are inclusive of tax. The US isn't. And of course, different states have different tax rates so...

Lastly, my storage of Christmas funds (which is already depleted to begin with because I had to ask for an advance to buy my friends presents... ummm Tchan, Hakkai plushie here... Joan, Grand Theft Auto OST 1 here... email me so that I know when I can meet up with you) is going to amount to zero soon since it's one of those impromptu birthdays with my friends and I'm still preoccupied paying debts (which is a lot). And I even planned to get a couple of those Daredevil 10 cent and Superman 25 cents comics which is hopefully arriving on Friday at CCHQ (plug!). ^^

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Monday, January 06, 2003

After cramming three papers in one day, all I have to say about my writing is that it sucks. Ugh. My Phil. Lit paper was okay since there was a given structure and manner of answering. My fiction short story is flawed. It had a good beginning but the ending seemed forced. My Philo paper is the worst of the three. I didn't even have a vision when I was writing it.

Anyway, regarding my day, it seems that several people had haircuts. Dropped by CCHQ and saw them restock since they have two weeks worth of backlog comics. They also managed to get the limited edition of Coraline (which glows in the dark and has some sketches at the end) but it costs P1600. For those who have the money, there's still one copy when I last checked.

Speaking of buying stuff from CCHQ, got the items I was making a downpayment for (Tchan dear, when can I meet up with you? I have your Hakkai plushie already.). Some of the books I loaned also got returned. When you add that to the fact that I was carrying Steph's belated Christmas gift, my backpack was really heavy.

As for Steph's Christmas gift, gave it to her after class. And well, she did tell me that it's okay if I don't give her future Christmas and birthday presents since what I gave was more than enough (which just goes to show she isn't using me for her own ends). ^^

Lastly, there's Krip's fiction class which is often interesting. He fed us peanuts which he got from his, uhhh, province I presume. Anyway, he's helping out his friend Mr. Abad who forgot that he has to make an anthology of romance poems for UP Press and is starting to do so only now (Krip claims he's suffering from Alzheimers) despite the fact it's slated for Valentines. On a side note, Butch Dalisay is also compiling a romance anthology of short stories, for those interested in contributing.

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Sunday, January 05, 2003

Taking a break from writing.

Anyway, following the trend of adapting popular fantasy novels to children's books, Terry Brook's Sword of Shanarra actually got divided into three books. Nice art but uh, it's going to be expensive if you're going to collect the series. It's like what they did with Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time...

Anyway, too busy to finish Pier's Anthony's Xanth. He reads more like a children's story than an epic fantasy, in my opinion.

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Since I'm cramming all my homework today, it's only now I've come to realize that it's 2003 by filling out the dates of my papers.

Technically, I have four assignments over the Christmas break. But me being lazy, I only set out to do three today since the fourth one isn't due until Saturday. I finished reading A Season of Grace two days ago but didn't get anything done yesterday since 1) I woke up late, 2) went to Glorietta to check if The Two Towers is being shown already (it's not), and 3) pick up the books I ordered for Steph from Carlos at Jobert's place (where we ended up watching the rest of the Fellowship of the Ring commentaries [my God... I didn't recognize Orlando Bloom or that guy who played Aragorn without their costumes and makeup!] and playing a D&D game which I had to abruptly leave because of fatigue and the fact I haven't done any of my homework yet).

The good news is that everything went according to plan. Finished my Fil. Lit. assignment in the morning, just finished my Philo paper right now, and will get to start writing that short story for Krip's class once I finish watching The Simpsons (which will be on in five minutes or so). The bad news is that I haven't really changed. Still cramming my homework at the last minute. And there's a rat again in my room...

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