Wednesday, April 23, 2014

National Picnic Day!


I like picnics, just haven't gone to one in a while. Today's not really the best day to have one, though.:iconusaplz:It's chilly and cloudy.

Managed to do my evening sit-ups last night!:dummy:So, I finally did a full day's routine of exercise. (The exercise routine I wanted to make a habit of. Did for a while until I got sick, just getting back to it now.) Haven't done that for a while. And, today's looking like I'll be able to do the same stuff. Went to bed a little early, and got up early at the time I wanted to. That meant I finally had a morning walk as well. Yesterday I had an early afternoon one, and one just before making dinner. The morning ones are interesting, though. The air is still crisp, the sun's still rising, there aren't very many people out, the colors are different, etc. The only people I did see were basically high school students making their way to school. (I think they were a little late.) They looked like they didn't want to be there.:icontinoplz:Oh, and I saw a runner, but that was it. The birds and squirrels were just starting to become active too. I did do my morning sit-ups this time, as well.
Started reading Chibisan Date. It's made by the same mangaka (manga creator/artist) that did Hetalia. One of my fave manga and anime, I loved both versions.:iconinloveplz:His name's Himaruya Hidekaz. (That's how he writes it out when it's not in Japanese. There isn't just a 'z' in Japanese, there is a 'zu', and that's how it is in the kanji form.) He's usually very into history and cultures from around the world. (Heck, he personified countries in Hetalia, went through a lot of their history, and a lot of the different cultures.) This is a little different, but still has a similar 'feel'. The main character is Seiji Chiga, a young artist studying under Mr. Suehiro, a potter, on the island of Nantucket during the 60's. He's a pessimist and doubts his abilities constantly. He puts pressure on himself to place better in an art competition, and as a result suffers a creative block. He passes his time with his new friends, a young girl known only as "Chibi-san", two teen girls from Boston (Margaret and Candy, they're sisters), and Fischer who's his best friend and the son of a local fisherman. It's kind of like a slice of life thing, but also historical. Interesting to see that he seems to still be getting used to American culture, too. The characters seem to have eerily close designs compared to Hetalia.:iconhanatamagoplz:I know it's his 'style', but it feels almost like he just recycled their looks. The main character looks like a cross between Japan and Spain in Hetalia, his best friend looks an awful lot like Poland, and the sisters look like the female version of Russia and Belarus. They have different personalities, though. Which is good. I think Chibi-san looks a bit like one of the micronations, not sure which one, though. Should be interesting to see how this one goes.

I finished the 7th short story of my nightmare anthology.:iconyayhanatamagoplz:Kind of ended abruptly, but it makes you think. Like, did that person actually make it out or not? But, that sounds like what happens in many dreams. I've been going with kind of a pattern for the beginning and ending of each story. It's a very fun way of doing it, too. I want people to have at least an unsettled feeling after each one. They're far from happy stories, and that's the way nightmares should be. Tried to at least give off a scary atmosphere. Next one should be interesting, too. Not sure where that will go either. It's like a journey with each one I do.:iconchibinitalyplz:

Played my clarinet for an hour this time. Felt good. Haven't done that in a long time. Did a lot of jazz tunes, pieces from my advanced classical 'style' solos, and a lot of Irish tunes. It was fun, and I think I sounded a lot better today. 
Studied the kanji and . If is pronounced as 返す or かえ.す ( to return (something), restore, put back; to turn over, turn upside down, overturn; to pay back, retaliate, reciprocate; (suf) (after the -ます [-masu] stem of a verb) to repeat..., to do...back. As 返る or かえ.る ( to return, come back, go back; to turn over; (suf) (after the -ます [-masu] stem of a verb) (to become) extremely, (to become) completely. It can be pronounced as へん (hen) in compounds. When is pronounced as 勉める or つと.める (tsuto.meru): to endeavor, try, strive, make an effort, exert oneself, be diligent. It tends to be pronounced as べん (ben) in compounds. 勉学 or べんがく (bengaku): study, pursuit of knowledge. 勉強 or べんきょう (benkyou): study; diligence; discount, reduction. 勉励 or べんれい (benrei): diligence. 

Read some more of A Treasury of American Jewish Folklore. This chapter was a bit different. It was about Yiddish and how new Jewish immigrants to America used it and basically evolved it over time as they were learning English. What they came up with is still being used today, and some of it has been picked up into English. They coined the term Yinglish for Yiddish-English being combined. It was very fascinating. Even words like beatnik has its roots in Yiddish. (The 'nik' part at least.) It also talked about sayings and puns that came about with the 2 languages combining. Some were really funny, and some of them were just bad.:iconswissplz:This chapter looks like it's the longest one. Tons of more bilingual Yiddish/English sayings, puns, and jokes. Sounds interesting. The other chapters were more about actual stories/legends of immigrants coming here. 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Happy Earth Day!


The earth should definitely be appreciated. It's an amazing planet, and should be protected.:iconhongkongplz:The 8th day of Passover just ended too. Yay! I can have chametz now!:iconyayhanatamagoplz:(Things that weren't kosher during Passover. Bread, pasta, etc.) For dinner, I had some elbow macaroni with spaghetti sauce and beef meatballs on top. The regular sauce is much better than the Passover spaghetti sauce. The Passover one is kind of bland.:icondisgusted-hongkong:I still had the Passover cake I started yesterday, and some candies. Still good stuff, but now I can eat other things. It feels good when I finally can. The first bite of chametz after the holiday is awesome!:iconfrancisplz:I guess it makes people appreciate what they normally have more, as well. 

I got up a little late today, but got some things done at least.:iconwtfromanoplz:Did my morning sit-ups, and both my 2-mile walks. I'll definitely get my evening sit-ups in like I did last night. So, I managed to get both walks in!:dummy:It's been a while since I've done that. Feels great! It'd be great if I can keep up the walks and sit-ups again. It was very windy and sprinkling out during both my walks, but it down poured both times afterwards. Glad it wasn't during those walks. It was really nice and sunny, too. Slightly chilly, though. Smelled nice, because a lot of the flowers were still in bloom.

I noticed that the meds I ordered through the mail on the 11th weren't here yet. So, I called the pharmacy. They said that I apparently had ordered too close to the last order, and won't let it go through until the 24th.:iconsighingplz:Which I'll have to call them back then to go over the meds that are still at the 'in process' stage. It's weird because when I first ordered for my normal 2 months' worth, that weird psychiatrist who I never met (yet people told me over the phone was my actual 'doctor', they didn't use the word psychiatrist) only ok'd me for a month's worth and said that they wouldn't ok anymore orders. That person only ok'd 2 other orders, and those 2 weren't filled all the way either.:iconinsultedplz:So, I had told my actual new doctor about the whole thing. She found it odd as well, because at the physical she made it so she was in charge of all my meds. Including these ones until I find another psychiatrist. She made another refill for me for the 2nd month's worth, and told me that I could order it when I wanted to. I did like the next day after she ok'd it. Apparently that was too soon.:iconbraginskiplz:So odd. This person who I didn't know, kind of messed with things. So, after I get this cleared, I won't be able to order my normal amount until maybe the end of May or beginning of June. Oh well. At least I'm getting the next one soon. 

Also, there was a notice on our front door saying there will be a planned power outage on the 24th. I'm not sure if I've heard of these. They said that they're working to make the power grid better, and in order to do that safely for their crew and their customers they'll cut the power. Makes sense, but kind of a headache. They said the power will go out anytime between 8am and 4pm, and for roughly 3 hours. Great.:icongermanyplz:I'm glad they put out notices though. Very nice of them. Interesting that the day I can talk to the pharmacy about my recent order and to ok it, is the same one for the power outage. Something must be going on...I know I can just call the pharmacy the next day, if I can't get a hold of them. I kind of like to look at the order itself while talking to them, and that's online. The only way I can get to it is through my computer, and that may be off. One day later isn't bad, either. 

Rurouni Kenshin has been interesting. Apparently when people are being shot at, they rarely hit a character. I know that guns were relatively new back then (they were used to fighting with swords before), but that's kind of crazy. I like the stories behind the characters, though. (And, the characters are growing in development throughout it.) The fighting scenes are interesting. You also get kind of a taste of what life was like in the Meiji era. (1868 to 1912. The present time in the story is 1879, I think. Kenshin fought during the Meiji Restoration, which was a war/revolution that ended with the start of the Meiji era.) I'm not usually into historical anime/dramas, but this was done pretty well. Certainly keeps my interest. 
There have been slight differences so far in the manga version of Pandora Hearts. It's only slightly different. I know I've read at some point the anime took a totally different turn to what the manga did. So, I guess I'll get a chance to see that. The manga went on for quite a bit longer, too. So, there might be a lot more to the original story. Sounds exciting!:la:I just got to the part where they introduced the Cheshire cat. The whole story has heavy Alice in Wonderland themes. There are 2 Alices that are kind of mirror images of each other. (Goes with the theme pretty well, I think.) One that's of the Abyss, or she's better known as the Will of the Abyss; and the other is supposedly a Chain who was trapped in the Abyss. Chains have special powers, love to eat people, and tend to look super creepy. This Alice is very powerful, doesn't eat humans, and isn't really all that creepy. She's searching for her memories. (The other side of that is most Chains don't have memories of before they were in the Abyss.) The other Alice is only creepy in personality and behavior. She's kind of insane. She ripped out Break's eye for the fun of it.:iconitalyishorrifiedplz:If Chains find human contractors, they can travel to our world. Oz is Alice's contractor. The Chains can't use their powers in this world unless the contractor allows them to. (They'll eat up the energy of the contractor and eventually the contractor will be sent to the lowest level of the Abyss.) I love the Cheshire cat in this (I liked him in Alice in Wonderland, too). This one's obsessed with the Will of Abyss, and will destroy anyone who he deems may be a threat to her. The Mad Hatter character is probably Break. No one knows what he's thinking, drinks tea all the time, always has candy, talks to a doll, and is rather 'mad', in the crazy sense. The Chain Alice calls him a clown. But, he's also a good character deep down. 

Wrote a bit more of the 7th chapter of my nightmare anthology. Didn't get through much of it, because Word was acting really slow.:iconlietplz:But, at least I got through some of it. It's turning out to be another interesting one.

Played my clarinet. Sounded much better than yesterday. Did some tunes from my general solo book, some Ellington, and some Gershwin. Rosie, one of our cats, actually sat really close to me through most of it. I don't understand why she likes me playing the clarinet so much.:iconkikuplz:I would've thought it'd be at least too noisy for her to be that close. Maybe I play better than I think I do...:iconseychelles-plz:After I play she usually looks at me as if to say: "that's it?" It's cute, and I guess it's nice to have her as my number one fan. She's lucky that she gets a front row seat that way.:iconenglandispervyplz:The other cat, Tasha, sometimes eats her food on the banister while I play. Kind of like she gets some lunch music or something. That's interesting too. 

JapaneseClass' site had a huge overhaul. I know that they've been telling us for months now that they were going to upgrade it, but I didn't think it'd be so soon.:iconsleepygreeceplz:I'll have to get used to the new design. It seems quicker with its reaction time, which is good. All the tabs to different parts of the site are on the side now. That's better than before. The only part I'm not liking so far is I can see people who are online at the same time move around in another sidebar as they gain experience points. It's kind of annoying. I'll be practicing and suddenly see that sidebar going crazy moving people up or down with the rankings as they gain or lose points. I wonder if they'll make an option where we can turn that part off?:iconromanoplz:We'll see. Can't challenge anyone at the moment, either. I didn't really use that function too often, but apparently people loved to challenge me. My friends list carried over, too. I did the practice questions for 'attendance', and went over some vocab from my oblivion list. I only got a few answers wrong, and made a pretty long combo of correct ones. Yay!:iconheroamericaplz: