Video games, fiber arts, and more.

Kushiro, Japan – A Dying City? D’:

When I lived in Japan, I lived in Kushiro, a city on the east edge of Hokkaido. Its primary industries, as I understand it, are fishing and paper production. (I actually got to go on a tour of one of the paper mills, and boy was that exciting! Very much like the tour of a crayon factory they show you in… was it Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood? I forget exactly. Anyway, it was the coolest field trip ever. The entry fee was the best 500 yen I ever spent.)

Anyway, some random fellow who will be working in Kushiro in the near future sent me an e-mail to ask for any advice I could give him about going there, working there, etc. He also sent me this video he found on YouTube. It was uploaded in March of 2008, and it’s the most heart-rending thing I’ve seen in a very long time.

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Why Avatar Should Not Be in the Anime Section at Blockbuster

Avatar: The Last Airbender, for those of you who know little to nothing about it, is one of the best cartoons I’ve ever seen. It appeals to its intended audience of children through its aesthetics and zany humor (neither of which you need to be a kid to appreciate), but it’s also got a well-developed cast of characters and a three-season story line in which the consequences of the characters’ choices matter. It’s the first kids’ show I’ve seen in a long time that is more than just a show for kids. Avatar is truly for all ages, like Sesame Street was back in the days before Jim Henson died and the people who are now in charge of its production took a wrecking ball to it.

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What World of Warcraft and Milk Have in Common

If you were to trace the balance of power between classes in World of Warcraft over the course of multiple patch updates, you’d probably find it similar to watching a very drunk man walking down the street. In one version, warlocks are overpowered. Next, it’s the hunters’ turn. There go the rogues. Hey, warlocks again! Oooooh, mages! Watching the series of nerfs and buffs and nerfs and buffs to one’s favorite character can cause inflammation of the brain and outright frustration.

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Nested Earth

I had a great idea today for a toy (if that’s the appropriate term) based off of the Russian nesting doll idea. It would be somewhat educational for younger kids and just friggin’ sweet for the rest of us: a nesting doll version of the Earth. It would be spherical in shape instead of the traditional mild pear shape and have five layers as follows:

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West High’s [Politically Correct] 2009 Jr. Prom

West High School in Anchorage, AK had their 2009 junior prom on January 25th. The embroidery shop at which I work was commissioned to make the sashes for the prom court royalty. Six princes, six princesses, and the sashes to be worn by the crowned 2009 Junior Prom King & Queen. They wanted them done a week beforehand, so that the prom court, elected by their peers, could show off their named sashes in the week leading up to prom. It was a pretty standard arrangement. We had all but the King and Queen sashes done on time. (I failed to sew the king and queen sashes in the right color. Bad me.) We gave them their prince and princess sashes on time and told them we'd get them their other two sashes as soon as they were done. Well, on Wednesday of that week, we got a call from the activities director at the high school to commission eight more sashes at the last minute. It had turned out that all twelve of the students elected to the prom court were Caucasian. One of the teachers at the school, a black woman, raised a stink about it and singlehandedly forced the school to force the students to add eight minority students to their prom court...

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Obligatory Start-Up Post

I wasn't going to have one of these. I created this web site/blog as a place to put all the great essays I craft in my head at odd moments. Now that I have the site created, I find that those essays elude me. Topics you can probably expect to see me write about include (but aren't limited to) the following...

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