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Thursday, January 31, 2008

Sometimes, I hate this state...
We have a terrible government, but a lot of people believe in what they say because they are good at spin (the ability to trump up claims and misdirect people from the truth).

Tuesday was the primary here in Florida, and besides presidential candidates on the ballot, there was also something called Amendment 1. This amendment is supposed to save homeowners money, something about the homestead exemption tax.

The problem is, it mostly benefits those people that are wealthy and have recently moved to the state, while the savings per year for the average family is barely worth mentioning. Plus, despite assurances, the money is likely to come out of city government budgets, which will deprive education and emergency services of money they badly need. Sixteen independent studies into the logistics of this amendment have verified this, but the governor and his cronies have managed to convince enough people that it's a good thing, because the amendment passed in the vote.

The problem with Florida IS the fact that we have a lot of retirees and rich people who move down here, and they only care about keeping their money and paying as little in taxes as possible. Our education system is poor because of this. It desperately needs more money, not too mention better leadership.

If I could, I would secceed and form my own state, with an intelligence/common sense requirement that has to be passed for anyone applying for citizenship.

Back in my small world, I had thought my grandma had an appointment today for the doctor to check up on the rather high blood pressure she's had since her fall. But it turns out the appointment was moved to next week, so instead grandma asked me to make her some Jello and chocolate pudding.
Tomorrow she wants me to cut her hair. I just hope I don't make a disaster out of it...

I'm playing around with my Intro some more, seeing what works best. Hoping to have links to fanfiction up there of course *kicks self into writing mode*

My pre-ordered copy of the new Ayreon album, 01011001, arrived in the mail today, which made me extremely happy =)
An Ayreon release is always something special. It's a music project by Arjen Lucassen, a Dutch musician/singer/composer/producer. He writes rock operas and then invites many different musicians and vocalists to participate. These albums are about as epic as you can get. Talk about eargasms...

Here's a sample from the opening track for your listening pleasure.


2Short: I'm sure you could curl up with a puppy, but with a kitty it's just better ^^

Ichigo: Yeah, I don't like to think how long this has been going on, over 2 years I'm certain. Last year was just when everything eventually came to a head. Let's hope I'm coasting out of it now.

Ink.Black.Sky: Another M*A*S*H fan! Thanks ^^

Le Kun: Now that's a perscription I could easily follow =)

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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Continuing To Recover
*Falls over*

From the time we left this morning to the time we arrived back home, we spent pretty much exactly 12 hours either on the road or up at the hospital.

I just want to curl up and join my cat in being lazy for awhile...

The latest CT scan shows that the recovery is continuing nicely, the lungs are just about cleared up now, if not completely already.
Unfortunately, there is a price that has been exacted out of this whole nightmare: the scan also indicated some permanent scarring in the lung and bronchial passage, which can make me suceptible to infection again in the future. This is why I'm most pissed about the fact that it took us so long to get this looked at and diagnosed in a serious way.

Anyway, we're backing off the antibiotics now to a M/W/F schedule instead of ever day. Plus they went ahead and gave me the pneumonia shot.

Ryosuke Forever: Hm, that makes sense, actually. All the full tunes on iMeem players I've seen around here are J-pop/J-rock stuff.

Schultzie: Thanks, can't do a proper playlist without some Rush =)

CosmicSailor: Dad boiled some eggs for her, but she didn't want them. She's started eating a little now, but for a few days all she could manage was bouillon.

Mimmi: I only get carsick trying to read whenenver we're up in the mountains =P Too much up and down, not enough flat road o_O

Raina: I took a book and my iPod =) But I left my earphones behind. We were able to buy a cheap pair once we reached our destination though. For 97 cents, they were pretty crap of course, but they served their purpose.

Ichigo: I might go back and make it so the music doesn't start automatically, especially since I'm fond of posting videos. Or even remove it altogether later, it's in the experimental phase for now.

Master Hiko: We have to travel so far because the doctors who specialize in treating patients with congential heart conditions are all up there. The ones here only deal with heart conditions people develop later in life. I was born with mine.
Plus, that's also where we got in to see the doctor who diagnosed my infection. I had a scan done down here, but their pictures were too fuzzy to really tell anything.
I think all the crap doctors and equipment are here...

Darkeangel: Nightwish FTW!

Ink.Black.Sky: Thanks! =)

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Monday, January 28, 2008

Tomorrow is a loooooooooooooooong day
It's time to travel to the hospital for another check-up to see how my lungs are recovering from the infection. I hate thes trips; it's not being at the hospital so much as the actual drive there and back home, which is 3 hours both ways, for a total of 6 hours on the road. And since it takes a few hours to get everything done while we're up there, that adds up to a terribly long and rather stressful day ><'

Grandma is still in a lot of pain after that fall and she's also been rather nauseos and hasn't been able to eat much of anything. And since we're all going to be far away from here for almost an entire day, I'm going to worry about her on her own, which won't do anything to ease my stress of course.

I'll come back with an update tomorrow after I've escaped from the torture.

And at last, I have music on my MyO! I decided to sign up at Project Playlist and was able to find a few favorite tunes. I would prefer to upload my own, but iMeem was cutting everything I posted down to short clips.

I want to know how some people here are able to stay on iMeem and post full songs? Why can you do that when I could only do clips after awhile?

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

It's not the fall that hurts...
Apparently the fall hurt Grandma worse than we thought at the time. Her arm got all bruised up, so I had to take her to the doctor today. They couldn't find any evidence of broken bones in the X-rays though, so that's a relief. She'll just be very sore for a few days.

I'm glad to see everyone's enthusiasm for the Otaku Watercooler idea =) Now that I know so many people are onboard for it, I'll start fleshing out the idea. It won't become a physical reality until the switch to Version Vibrant though. Oh, and I'll look over any suggestions anyone might have for it.

I finally broke down and ordered from Amazon tonight. Usually I'm very vocal in my dislike for the site, but this time it was a case of 'needs must when the devil drives.'
I ordered the Pink Cream 69: Platinum set, which includes albums Sonic Dynamite, Endangered, and Mixery (an EP of live tracks and covers). For three CDs, I think $33 was a good deal. Especially with free shipping.

With Media Blasters releasing a new DVD of Angel Sanctuary, I'm going to take the opportunity to post one of my favorite AMV's for the OVA.
While it's better to read the manga to get the complete story, the OVA is a good introduction to it.

WARNING: There is a massive spoiler at the end of the video. If you want to avoid it, stop at 3:30. If you want to be just a bit more adventurous, stop at 3:45. If you just don't care about spoilers, watch the whole thing =P

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Friday, January 25, 2008

A Little Bit of Drama
Grandma fell again today. She said the cat tripped her up (silly cat). She wasn't seriously hurt though and Dad and I managed to get her off the floor and into a chair.

I believe I will put a serious effort into tackling the start of one of my stories tomorrow, or at least build up a clear and detaild outline. I had one before, but I'm not sure if it got deleted ><

I'm hoping to at least get the epliogue done, I've had it floating around my head for ages. When it's finished, I'll post it here =)

Downloaded and watched the second episode of Torchwood. Wow... this season will leave Season 1 in the dust! Not only do we have some tantilizing hints about Jack's past that will be explored, we now have the threat of a hidden alien sleeper cell, waiting to awaken and conquer the world o_O This is the kind of material Seaon 1 was sorely lacking.

After the 160+ posts of spamming in the comment box for Episode 19 of the Podcast, I've come up with an idea. If we still want to have fun with our run-on conversations, we should take advantage of the new feature of Version Vibrant that allows groups to maintain one blog. All those of us who are the usual suspects when it comes to spamming can maintain this blog, where we can chat as much as we like. This way, we keep the main page comments strickly Podcast-related.

Anyone else fancy this idea?

And to wrap up this post, another video. I've recently become re-addcited to Pink Cream 69; silly name, but awsome melodic metal band. These guys exemplify everything musically good that came out of the 80s and 90s. Plus David Readman has to be one of my favorite vocalists.

So, from their 1998 album Electrified, here is "Shame"...

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A Musical Interlude
BAND: Voyager
HOME: Australia
ALBUM: Univers
SONG: Sober (Radio Edit)


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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Leaky Pipes
So we finally got a plumber in today to figure out where the leak was. Turns out it was right under our bathroom sink, so the guy had to dig down through the floor to reach the problem.

Now of course, this means digging through concrete, so the guy used a jackhammer o_O HOLY CRAP that thing is loud! Gave me a massive headache for awhile.

The up side is, with the problem fixed, we won't have to go out to the meter and turn the water on and off whenever we need it and don't need it. The meter is in a hole in the ground and you have to turn the switch with a pair of pliers. Not the easiest thing in the world.

Today I learned a rather shocking piece of news: Heath Ledger, who will appear as the new Joker in The Dark Knight, was found dead in his appartment o_O No details have been given yet except that drugs may have been involved.

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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang
That is the title of the premier episode of Torchwood: Season 2. And boy does it start things off with a bang. Or rather a fish. Well, a blowfish-headed-alien-guy driving a stolen sports car.

After the heavy-handed and rather clumsy angst of last season, I can't think of a better way to start a new season with something so quirky. And in a way, it's quite British. How many modern American scifi shows would have an alien guy with a blowfish head, wearing a suit (salmon colored, ba-dum-ch), driving a stolen sports car? Nothing since Buffy and Angel, thats for sure.

Here's the pre-credit opening for the episode:

I won't go into a long-winded review of the episode, but for those of you who are still complaining about missing your shows because of the screenwriters' strike, this is a good way to fill the gap. You probably won't get some references back to Season 1 and the semi-crossover that happened at the end of Doctor Who's 3rd Season, but just start watching and roll with it.

Here's the 'Coming Soon' trailer for the rest of the season:

And if you don't like the idea of downloading and you get BBC America on TV, the season will premier here in the US next Saturday, January 26.

As for me, it's been an average week which is why I haven't bothered posting. Stay at home, check websites, read fanfiction, listen to music, chat with friends, spend some time over at grandma's house... the usual.

My parents are at a church thing (class, meeting, not sure which) out of town until tomorrow night. Oh, and dad prodded me about that young adult church camp retreat again. I wish he'd just leave it, and me, alone ><'

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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Not a bad day, really
It felt nice to get out for awhile. I could actually walk around and be human.

A few times my mind had the urge to send me into a panic, but I beat it back down as hard as I could. I had my iPod with me (music usually takes my mind elswhere), but for the most part I busied myself by reading my book, "The God Delusion". I only got through the preface so far, but I can tell I'm going to enjoy it. This book isn't just some anti-religion rant, but a thoughtful and humorous discourse. It's also a good place to start my campaign to read more nonfiction, not just for entertainment but for my own self education. Quite often I feel I don't know at much at my age as I really should.

When I reached the end of the preface where the author Richard Dawkins thanks certain people, I was rather surprised to learn his wife is Lalla Ward. This means nothing to most of you, so I will explain: she is an actress who once starred in the classic Doctor Who series. She was also briefly married to her co-star, the Doctor himself (at the time) Tom Baker. Adding even more of a '6 Degrees of British SciFi' twist, I found out from research on Wikipedia that Dawkins and Ward met through a mutual friend, none other than Douglas Adams of Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy fame.

So after the lab and a quick trip to the bank, we dropped by social security. Waited around for about 20 minutes before being called back. It ended up being a wasted visit, because in less than 5 minutes we were told that the only way I could qualify for more money was if my dad was retired and receiving social security as well (which won't happen for another 2-3 years). They coudld've just said that in the letter, but since when has beaurocracy ever been convenient?

Got some Quiznos for lunch (two chicken sammies and a brocolli-cheese bread bowl soup) and kicked back with MythBusters DVDs.

CDs I ordered last week came in: Slavior and Treacle People. Now I'm just waiting for the next orders =P *MUSIC ADDICT, MUSIC ADDICT!*

Had a nice chat online with my ex-girlfriend. We're still talking about hanging out sometime since we haven't seen each other in over 2 years. She also keeps mentioning that I should move back to Orlando once I'm finally looking for a job. I know she gets depressed sometimes and would just like to have at least one friend close by whom she can totally trust, and I wouldn't mind, although I'm not sure what it would do to my sanity in the end. Plus I was planning to move into grandma's house eventually since she plans on leaving it to me anyway, that way I wouldn't have to find a new place or pay rent on an apartment.

Guess we'll burn those bridges when we get there.

Dad is again asking me to consider going to a young adult weekend retreat at the end of March. He says it would be a good opportunity to connect with other people in my age range, but the fact is it's still a church camp, which means I wouldn't be too comfortable there. I wish the family would accept that church isn't my way and I've made up my mind.

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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Plumbing Problems & Otaku Attractions
Once again, one of the video suggestions I sent in to Kei was picked as this weekend's Otaku Attraction =)

SomeGuy joked that I was becoming the chief provider of AMVs for the OA, but he's not half wrong. Since I started sending in suggestions this year, at least 5 of them have made the cut, that I can recall. I've always tried to be discerning in my hunt for AMVs, and only send in ones I manage to find on You Tube that I've previously downloaded from AnimeMusicVideos.org.

I've got a few more saved up that I hope to send in over time.

Meanwhile, all day yesterday I had been hearing a sound that was unmistakably water running through the pipes, even when we weren't running sinks or any appliances. Dad figures we've had another pipe under the house break - this has happened before - so he left the water off most of the day, which kept me from having my shower until about 5 PM. Not that I was really going to do anything anyway, but I still like to feel clean, ya know?

Tomorrow I'll be out and about for quite awhile. Dad only has to be at school for part of the day - observance of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, so no students and teachers only in for in-service - and he'll be back early in the afternoon so we can get some things done:
1) Bloodwork at the lab.
2) Get some more balance books from the bank for our check books.
3) Drop in at Social Security to see if there are any other programs I can apply to for money since I'm still not working.

Other than that... I've been a bit depressed lately, but that also might have something to do with staying up too late and being tired most of the day. But I am rather cut-off from the outside these days, and with no real human contact outside my family.

Let's hope that changes this year. I have to do what I can to face my anxieties. I was talking to a friend last night, and she's convinced that I have developed agoraphobia - fear of the outdoors.

Lucky me ><'

Oh, and tomieharley, just because your nemesis lives in Norway doesn't mean you should automatically dislike anything else that comes from there =P

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