Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Hellgate London

From the creators of Diablo, the much awaited and highly acclaimed Hellgate London is finally here. I doubt I'd be one of those queueing at Funan IT mall later today, with the upcoming PLC exams, it'll be near suicide should I get my hands on that. I'll just have to be satisfied with third party feedback from Anthony and Kevin, as usual.

I'll get it no doubt about that, just probably sometime in December.. but I still want that Wii set first. Argh, so much to buy, so little money to spend. Grumble grumble.


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Monday, October 29, 2007

The Cell

After a frenzied marathon of 136 + episodes, I'm finally out of Naruto. *Sob* So I rummaged through my old collection of DVDs and settled upon The Cell. It still possesses the same enigmatic quality and remains as gripping as it first was when I sneaked in at GV Balestiar to catch it back in 2000 (since it was still R(A) back then). The strength of the show lies not in its characters nor even in the plot which is really quite simple, it is the imagery and the concepts which are entailed therein that makes one sit up and for the most part either love or hate the movie. But one can't help but be disturbed (in varying degrees) by what one sees, certainly by the scene where Vincent D'Onofrio (the killer) pokes a hole in Vince Vaughn's (FBI agent) stomach and fishes out some intestine which he proceeds to spiral around a rotisserie. Really.


The story starts with a sadistic mentally disturbed killer who goes round drowning helpless nymphs in airtight glass tanks. After one of his S&M sessions (stringing himself up on meat hooks attached to the ceiling), he has a seizure and falls into a coma just as the FBI finally bust his ass. Problem is, one victim remains alive, her whereabouts unknown and they have to find her within 48 hours.

Enter J.Lo as a child therapist who agrees to use a new treatment to enter the killer's mind and uncover the secrets. This is where the movie becomes gruesomely riveting. The extensive and elaborate visual imagery and costumes present a disturbing preview into the mind of a mentally deranged person. With scenes ranging from broken life-size dolls spinning eerily behind glass windows, to bathtubs of blood, to lifeless females sitting in perfect angles across desert dunes, their mouths gaping at the setting sun, to a boy being physically abused by his dad for breaking the dishes, one experiences a gamut of emotions from revulsion, sadness, mild unease, pity, wonder to amazement.

The often frequent and abrupt changes of scenes that remain slightly disturbing while being weirdly beautiful at times and the riot of images,colour and sounds, an assault on the senses; only serve to reinforce the surreality and warped nature of the mind- a place where anything goes and the potential to imprison lies in its ability to construct illusions.

One of the most goose-bump inducing scenes (not freaky shit ones--that probably has to go to the intestine curling part) is the one where J Lo suddenly awakes (still in his mind) drenched and exhausted. And she notices that she is in some brightly lit great hall, then suddenly there is a great rustling sound as the lilac velvet which covers the sides of the hall are pulled back at great speed, rushing through the bronze hoops affixed to the walls. And she rises, turning slowly, wearily and with great dread. To see the killer striding grimly down the steps from his throne towards her, the reams of lilac velvet attached to great rings pierced through his back. Then she screams in mortal terror, pressing the flesh between her forefinger and thumb desperately as she does so (to activate the termination mechanism). Words do the scene little justice.

So anyway silly woman that she is, she goes in another time and this time she gets trapped. Literally collared. And it's up to Vince Vaughan (Dodgeball) as potential love interest to rescue her before it's too late. Be prepared for more mind-numbing scenes, especially the part where he approaches a collared J Lo who sits poised like a cat ready to strike, except that she seems absolutely lifeless, her eyes betraying no hint of emotion. Or the infamous intestine curling part, the scream, blood curdling. Shudders.

The conclusion however possesses an element of redemption as J Lo moved by the small boy, the last shred of innocence left in the comatose killer attempts to redeem him by reversing the feed and bringing him into her mind. Approaching the boy in the likeness of the Madonna (the virgin one), she tries to coax him to follow her, to let her reach out to him. Only to be thwarted by the masochistic killer who metamorphoses from a swan in one of the lily ponds, darkness descending as he does so. J Lo's startling transformation from the Virgin Mary into a vengeful gothic Xena, complete with midnight black lipstick, crazed witch hairdo and a gleaming golden crossbow is priceless.

Much as I've spoiled the rest of the movie, I'll leave the end intact. Suffice it to say, that it was bitter-sweet, with redemption, however incomplete.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Nudité de la vérité

No, I'm not dead...yet. Just a little something called PLC and the slew of assignments and other miscellaneous stuff with tight deadlines. That and the regular breaks taken in between to catch Naruto which I started re-watching again on a whim since I'd stopped at around episode 30 previously, halfway through the Chuunin exams bit. It's certainly been quite gripping, one of the more addictive series since Inuyasha and Bleach. Nothing like some high-octane fuelled action between insanely strong rivals.

Norton Internet Security on the other hand has been a real bitch with the bloody Appsvc32.exe process consuming up to 99% of CPU resources which translates into horrible long loading time for programs and the propensity to get stuck at regular intervals for a minute or two. A quick search on the net showed that this problem is prevalent and I tried a tip or two. Now to see whether it works, if not, it's good riddance to NIS, can't have a single program hogging up 90% of the CPU.

Anyhow, it's back to the grind(for now), and I leave you with this artful piece of prose by Paul Eluard, one of a few poems I think are truly beautiful, even though it may seem strange to describe it as thus. French is such a sensual language.

Nudité de la vérité
«Je le sais bien»
Le désespoir n'a pas d'ailes,
L'amour non plus,
Pas de visage,
Ne parlent pas,
Je ne bouge pas,
Je ne les regarde pas,
Je ne leur parle pas
Mais je suis bien aussi vivant que mon amour
[et que mon désespoir.]

The Nakedness of Truth
(I know it well)
Despair has no wings,
Nor has love,
No countenance:
They do not speak.
I do not stir,
I do not behold them,
I do not speak to them,
But I am as real as my love and my despair.

Paul Eluard

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Baby Brew

Today was one of those rare occasions, Sean was on leave and it just so happened that the Sister, who was also off, wanted to have a little fun in the sun and some baking session with her girl friends which meant my place was free, gloriously and totally empty. Not quite your once-in-a-century-Jupiter-aligns-with-Mars rarity but close. And when such golden opportunities to indulge in uninhibited workouts that have nothing to do with conventional exercise present themselves, you seize them. Which we did.

So after a couple of sojourns in bed, a short nap and the meatilicious meatball lunch at Ikea, we headed back to his place. His mom was ill however and wanted to see the doctor so we basically had to keep an eye on his 7 months old nephew, Jarrod till she returned. He's a cute baby, bit of baby fat on the cheeks, tiny grasping hands and the longest eyelashes I've ever seen on a baby. The kind that'd make you'll boo boo at and start baby talking to.

Babies in particular and to an extent, kids are fun to play with as long as they aren't your kids. You can always play with them and shower them with some attention but at the end of the day you can (and will) still say bye. Having your own kids though is a whole different ball game and it's not everyone's cup of tea. Certainly not mine. But playing with them can be fun. Till they throw up on you or something.

I'd played with Jarrod on the few occasions he'd been around when I came over. Nothing much, just the usual tickle and perfunctory pat on the head, then it was off to my favourite room in Sean's house. But today, we had to 'keep an eye' on him, till Sean's mom returned. Sean vanished for a while to settle some stuff after warning me not to pick him up cause 'You'll be stuck with him then', so basically it was just the two of us eyeing each other.

First Contact: Looking on a little startled in Big-Bright-Eyed-Wonder. And we always wonder what's going on in their heads. I must have looked like some alien peering into the cot at him. Jarrod was certainly fascinated by the flash though.

He's a grabber. Reaching out in a flash, Jarrod grabbed the proffered thumb without hesitation. And what goes on behind those big, liquid eyes? Possibly something like Big + Wriggly = Fun. Grab!

Feeling it up. But the extended index finger interested him more apparently, one which he gripped tightly with his tiny left hand and proceeded to pinch the tip repeatedly with his right hand much like your average housewife pinching/prodding a piece of meat to see how fresh it is. Observe his serious countenance as he pinches. Hmm long + fleshy. Pinch pinch.

Num Num. Then as I was tickling him under the chin, he grabbed with startling alacrity, my thumb and little finger and shoved my middle finger into his mouth which he sucked happily and chomped on hard with his still toothless gums. Then he'd take it out, still tightly gripping my thumb and little finger, inspect it for a while then proceed to shove it back in and suck/chomp on it while grinning at me, cheeks puffy as he sucked/chomped away. A process he repeated for sometime. I was laughing non-stop the entire time. This kid has potential be a bright lad. What were you thinking? Tsk tsk.

Baby Dracula. After a while Jarrod decided that my finger, long and juicy as it may be was insufficient. He'd tasted finger and now he wanted more. Which was when he proceeded to grab my index finger and shove both that and the little finger into his hungry, chomping little maw. Which he then proceeded to suck/gnaw on with obvious relish. As you can tell from that look of sublime bliss on his face.

Then Sean appeared and it was his turn to entertain his nephew. Seriously though, adorable babies like Jarrod are fun to play with but at the end of the day they're still not your kids which is really, in my opinion, what keeps the fun factor alive. Having kids of your own though is totally different and even if I were straight, thanks but no thanks.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

In the Mood for Crap.

I hate it when we fight. Or when money comes into the picture. Hate it, hate it, Hate it.
Maybe I've been too 'non-inclusive'. After all, being together means doing little things together right? So I'm probably wrong. But I don't get it sometimes. And I'll need his help to get it. Yet the it's for your own good kind of rationale always pisses me off no end. Like seriously. Even though he doesn't mean to, it does. The kind of stubborn rage that invites calamity.

So maybe sometimes I don't want to get it. Not if I have to hear that. I'm just a pig-headed fool sometimes, I know. But right now, I'm in a state of Blah. Frustrated, Annoyed, Grumpy, Depressed. Even though I probably am wrong. Am I? This fucking sucks.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

AarinSecret #2: By Fans for Fans.

The second issue of AarinSecret, a free online Yaoi magazine, has recently been released (3rd October '07) by the staff of Aarinfantasy, that mega one-stop english portal for all things Yaoi. That's the same fansubbing and scanlation group that churned out favourite Yaoi (as well as some non-yaoi ones) series and titles like Loveless, Enzai, Close the Last Door and of course the glorious, extremely smutty and uncensored Sensitive Pornograph.

Professional right? I'd even buy it if they sold it. Thankfully it's free. Download your copy here.
Cover picture is a wonderful piece of fan art of Itachi & Sasuke done by a very talented Russian fan, Yanagoya.

As expected, this release while free as usual, lived up to the same professional standards of all their other works. And at 104 pages, it's chock a block full of goodies ranging from high quality fan art, reviews of the different mangas, movies and anime titles to quizzes and interviews. Even the layout is what you'd normally expect from a published(ie: not free) magazine, attractive cover, detailed content page and easy to read layout.

The magazine starts out with an editor cum Yaoi fangirl's insightful article about her obsession with Yaoi and the reactions of people around her to her interest. The team also included a section on fans which included short interviews and features of artworks and fan fictions but I found the real life experiences about getting caught watching/reading Yaoi highly amusing.

Which I guess is excruciating if your mom walks in while one is watching the very explicit Sensitive Pornograph just as one of the graphic sex scenes is unfolding replete with sounds that leave nothing to imagination. A situation a forumer faced and in her(assuming it's a her) own words:
"My mom saw me watching Sensitive Pornograph! was during a sex scene..Agh!! What do I do?!! Well actually since I handled it badly, there's not much I can do now." -Lunefin
Yeah, well I can imagine.
Lunefin's mom: "...What is that?"
Lunefin:" Ah ah.. er .. the play we need to review for school.."
L's mom: "What? Let me see!"
L: NO!!! *panics and jams the power button while frantically attempting to block the screen with her body*

Maybe the thought of locking the door and using headphones never crossed their minds. Though if I would ever be unfortunate enough to be caught with my pants down (in all senses of the word), which I have no intention of ever being, I'd probably experience something akin to what the poor MrsTaraYuyMaxwell faced when her mom found her previewing some steamy man on man yaoi action.

"You might be startled to hear that when my mother found out she tried to exorcise me... three times. She'd throw water in my face and slam me up against the wall before proceeding to shake me harshly against the wall. All the while she would scream things like,'DEMONS BEGONE!!! LEAVE MY CHILD IN PEACE AND TAKE YOUR PERVERTED DESIRES WITH YOU!!!' And crap like that."- MrsTaraYuyMaxwell.

Yeah, not kidding. It's always easier to blame the devil for things they deem unacceptable than to recognise and accept the fact that their kid is perfectly fine. Though perhaps at this juncture, it'd be good to give em a run for their money and do your best 'Exorcist' impersonation, replete with the peasoup vomit and booming demonic voice. Sans the 360 degree head turn, not unless you're really possessed or you'd like to die trying. I doubt the Yaoi Demon empowers twisting anything more than a turgid part of the male anatomy.

So anyway, kudos to the team for releasing the second issue. Better late than never. And if you're a Yaoi fangirl or fanboy and haven't downloaded the AarinSecret magazine yet, watcha waiting for? Scroll up and grab it.

Monday, October 15, 2007

China Food Lodge.

It gets boring having dinner after tutorials at the Chinatown area sometimes, especially when as of late we seem just to head for the nearby and convenient food centre at People's Park Complex. The food there is generally nice, though I find myself patronising the same few stalls and at times craving the superb Yu Sang introed by Ed. and CS back at the temporary market near Outram MRT.

So anyway, after meeting Sean for an impromptu dinner, we decided to try out this Chinese food outlet (the name of which when translated literally is 'China Food Lodge') a couple of shops down from the Sarawak Jia Xiang Kolo mee, directly opposite the Yue Hwa Chinese goods departmental store, along the Hotel 81 chinatown stretch. We'd walked past it before and it was always jam packed with people, the majority of whom were unmistakably PRC nationals so the food must certainly be authentic and decent to boot.

The place was packed like always but thankfully we got a table soon and the food was excellent. Large, huge-ass portions and great food, though ordering initially was a little difficult cause all the waitress gave us was some order list that was entirely in chinese (duh) but without a menu (and hence no pictures). Though I found out later, they had those available but they probably thought that we looked like we knew what we wanted. Thankfully it didn't matter, the food was tasty and really good value for money.

Pork Rib noodles (La Mian) - 5 Bucks. Lots of juicy pork ribs and very piquant soup.

Clockwise from left: Steamed pork with cabbage dumplings, Sean's noodles (forgot the name but it was just as good), Cang You Bing (Scallion pastry), pork rib noodles.

All that food and two glasses of barley came up to just $17. So it's understandable why it's so popular. Plus it's open till 3am, so if you're around that area and want a little supper, you'll know where to head to. We certainly intend to return again soon.

And to top it off, I finally found the Little Britain series I'd been looking for, turns out I mixed up Poh Kim with Blue Max, a little pricey perhaps but I absolutely love the wicked wit and the various hodgepodge of dysfunctional characters in the show which comedians Matt Lucas and David Walliams portray devastatingly well.

Who can ever forget that repulsive, hilarious monstrosity in a pink jacket that is Vicky Pollard? ('No but yeah but no but yeah') Ironing won't be such a chore, for now at least. ^^

Nanashi's Anime Friday

I stumbled upon nanashi's anime blog while surfing for more details on the upcoming Code Geass Season 2. It's an interesting site, always nice to stumble on fellow anime fan sites especially those who put in a lot of hard work and effort into reviewing the various anime series. Nanashi has an innovative FAnime Friday feature where there's a weekly friday feature about anime from episode/anime reviews to soundtracks and various useful nuggets of information.

I've always found reviews by other anime fans helpful, you get a gist of what the series is about and then get to decide for yourself whether to go preview it. It's nice to see that Claymore isn't an anime just popular with the guys, which one might be inclined to believe since it's all about hot, passionate women wielding huge claymores(duh) as they battle monstrous youma (monsters) and there's gore a plenty. I may be gay but I absolutely loved Claymore even though Raki was a bit too weepy at times. Which made me want to slap him, well maybe hug him after that ^^.

Though I must say that the voice actor Motoki Takagi who also played Midori in Loveless nailed the part rather well. That weepy, wants to be tough but really vulnerable character bit. Nanashi's Fanime Friday feature is certainly worth checking out, though it would be nice if she could start some contest or other more interactive features, that would certainly spice things up. :)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Random Ramblings

Because I'm too lazy to come up with a more descriptive name unlike last time, and it is a convenient way of blogging about small, wholly unrelated events. If it seems too disjointed, too bad, coherency seems to be something I'm lacking in today. The headings should help though.

Insolent Casanovas and why they should be shot.

Sean told me yesterday that G. one of his closer friends called up crying in the morning while he was at work and asked for advice. I don't really know G. very well having only met her twice but other than being a little over the top and slightly divaish, she appears to be nice. Which Sean says she is, mostly that is. Apparently, she'd still been seeing the guy at work and continuing their relationship both in office and out of it in spite of the fact that she has a loving(or so I'm told) boyfriend studying in Australia and had been advised by mutual friends to stop seeing that guy. But like Sean said, pussy itchy la, which aptly sums it up.

She'd been sleeping with him for close to a year now, and having unprotected sex, something she'd denied doing till G called Sean up that morning crying and blurted out everything. Which I guess was not really surprising, I had been marvelling at how they had in her own words, just gone as far as heavy petting with some foreplay but no penetration and just stopped there. It didn't really sound correct but naturally you give people the benefit of the doubt when they talk about their personal activities in bed.

So anyway, this chap was diagnosed with TB and informed by the doctors that it was extremely rare for a young-ish guy (30s) to have Tuberculosis and HIV was listed as a potential cause. Which naturally sent G. into a tizzy and panic attack mode. Most people would certainly be considerably upset. What made matters a lot worse was that casanova (and he certainly doesn't look like one.. bleah) told her point blank to her face that even when he got the results of the HIV testing back he wouldn't tell her the results. Which I think is quite ridiculous.

You possibly get someone infected with HIV yet instead of doing what you can to come clean with the people you've had sex with to allow them to decide on their next course of action, you act like a total bastard. True the person might have been a consensual sexual partner but that doesn't mean they consented to sleeping with a potential HIV partner and even if they are partially to be blame, it doesn't give one the excuse to be a total bastard and not let people whom you may very possibly have infected know about your condition or lack thereof when you get the results back.

So G went for the full battery of tests and after a nerve wracking 24 hours was informed that the test results were negative. She does need to abstain and go again in 3 months time to get a clean bill of health because they only just stopped having sex recently. Naturally, she is not blameless but I will not comment on the infidelity aspect, being in no position to do so having myself been guilty of it before while attached to Sean and he was studying( in australia too). Suffice to say, the temptation is strong, the flesh is weak and one stumbles if one doesn't know very clearly what one wants in the relationship.

She'll have to come up with something when the boyfriend returns the following week, to explain just why they can't get it on like bunnies, at least not for the next 3 months. My take is it's pretty hard to come up with a convincing and plausible excuse(lie) for that so confessing would be the best but it's certainly not easy and it's a decision G. will have to make for herself. At the end of the day though, aside from the infidelity bit, it is wise to choose one's sex partners with care or at least those you have unprotected sex with.

HIV unfortunately remains a very real threat and sometimes I am thankful I escaped unscathed from my own escapades. Unprotected sex with casanovas is literally like Russian Roulette and insolent bastards like the one G slept with should be shot and castrated for good measure.

Anime & Manga Blitz

The past few months saw the avid consumption of a number of great anime series, most of which have sadly come to an end. Series like Claymore, Death Note, Code Geass Season 1 and now Darker than Black (sob sob no more Hei). It's always a mixed bitter-sweet feeling I have at the end of a good series, the glad that it has concluded nicely yet wistful, wishing it would go on kind of mixed emotion. Often, I even rue the fact I'll never see the characters (the animated ones at least) again but I guess closure is good sometimes. Better to end splendidly then to drag on and on.

Thankfully, there's still Bleach and Naruto Shippuuden to look forward too, and the anime is now following the manga and the plot is captivating even if they seem to be slowing down on releases lately. In other news, I'm really glad D Gray Man isn't ending at 52 as originally planned, that would have totally sucked, since at episode 51, the show is nowhere ever near the end or some sort of decent closure. Anime news network shows more upcoming episodes till at least 64 which is scheduled to air on christmas day in Japan so hopefully we'll be in for a lot more action.

Been doing a lot more Yaoi reading lately especially since the allure of CoV is starting to wane, to catch up on the unread hardcopy mangas and the softcopy scanlations. More gems amidst the sometimes fluffy stuff of lightweight plots and glorious smut that is typically yaoi. In particular, a few mangakas like Fujiyama Hyouta, Keiko Konno, Yamada Yugi, Shiuko Kano and Miyamoto Kano depict the relationship and real life issues very accurately in ways that are both moving and heartwarming. And just like the good anime series, I get that same bitter-sweet, happy yet wistful feeling upon finishing a good book/series.

Finishing volume 3 of Miyamoto Kano's moving and thought provoking Rules which depicted the obstacles and intricacies in the relationships between two couples and various old flames/friends was no different. Little sigh.

My abysmal luck with Taxi Drivers and Sister's Bakes

Ok I get crappy taxi drivers on a basis that is annoying in its frequency. Remember the taxi driver from hell? This one must be his compatriot. Grabbing the passing cab after catching Resident Evil: Extinction at AMK Hub with Sean today (which was typically almost identical to your average Zombie-Undead-Only remaining human Survivors left on a barren earth plot. The only redeeming grace was watching a trench coat clad Mila Jovorich hack off heads like a demoness on crack.) proved to be a mistake.

Slow old man who didn't know half the roads (come on ok, he didn't even know when to turn into the CTE, it's a fucking EXPRESSWAY), drove at 40 km/h, kept going "Oh Jesus!" every two mins or so and was bloody rude (Cause he was so blur, I had to tell him turn left at road XX instead of just turn left, closer to my place I told him turn left at XX which was like the only way to turn anyway but I gave the wrong name YY whereupon that stupid sod said, 'what you don't even know the name of the roads of where you live?' Well hello I normally just say turn left or right here and every other taxi driver knows, besides you don't say that to a PAYING CUSTOMER. So I was tempted to snap at him but I resisted cause he may just have Jesused me or something.)

Sean even whispered,"Eh can I change cab?" That's how bad it was. So anyway apparently, when he dropped Sean off at his place after mine he declared that the meter was spoilt and charged Sean an extra self-determined $3.00 surcharge since 'tomorrow is Hari Raya Puasa, Public Holiday'. Talk about stinky service with a snarl.

There are things to look forward to, like the Sister's sinfully good Cream-cheese chocolate muffins topped with chocolate chips, which while fattening, is undeniably dee-lee-cious.

I polished two straight out of the oven and had one after the infuriating cab ride to cheer myself up. Nothing like a good dessert to perk one up. But which also means it's time for my jog to burn off a fraction of the calories and with that I bid you adieu.

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Wednesday, October 10, 2007

All Hail the Butch.

I re-activated my City of Villains cum City of Heroes on the 16th of September 2007, now 21 days, 50 levels and hours of unadulterated fun later; Butchia the corruptor is finally at the magical level 50, complete with almost all of the targeted enhancement sets. And not unexpectedly, the two who got me back on the game have vanished off the CoV blip map as usual.

But the road to 50 this time was a lot faster and certainly a whole lot more enjoyable than the painful grind with Sister Spite was, for one game content now is a whole lot more dynamic, team play correspondingly more fun, the addition of unique enhancement sets made a whole load of difference and most importantly a great and rowdy coalition of villain supergroups that made teaming much more enjoyable.

Naturally, one learns from experience too which means always going for the greatest amount of experience (XP) by teaming with groups 2-3 levels higher than you running relentless missions with mobs 4-6 levels higher than your current one. Which always translates into superb xp. Forget the run of the mill groups, or the pansies running on the normal- mid difficulty missions. Then once level 45 was achieved, it basically resulted in an orgy of continual farm sessions with the groups in Grandville which basically saw Butchia powerlevelled from 45-50 in 2 days.

Presenting the 5 faces/aspects of the online persona which has so thoroughly occupied my time these past 3 weeks.

Butchia the Succubus. Like the lesbian version of Chucky the doll, she was complimented on her frightfulness, which was precisely the effect it was supposed to achieve.

Butchia the Hell rider. Decked out in punk motorbike attire, replete with tattered trench coat, mini skirt, tube top, spider stockings and rocket boots. The butch motorbike punk look remains a favourite.

Butchia the pseudo-Hero. An effort to make her look more human and 'approachable' which explains the typical 'Hero' kind of look, tacky colours with headwings. The end result, a slightly deranged looking 'hero'.

Butchia the Demon. Still my favourite outfit for her, this one nails the part totally and others have been quick to comment on this too. Burned wings, lithe and seductively sharp markings complete with horns, spiked tail and a head that blazes with fire, Butchia unleashes her full demonic potential when in this state.

The last and latest outfit, this one comes a close second. Butchia the Mecha Bitch. Lord Recluse made a good photo op. Having taken part in countless raids against the Rikti Mothership, she finally accumulated enough merits for the full Vanguard set, which looks rather nice in a robotic way. Toss in a pair of Tech Wings that happened to drop and the outfit is complete.

And of course, what's so great about looking good if you don't get any action?

Boom: Wrecking mayhem on the streets.

Boom: Rikti Mothership raid, smacking a Monster Rikti wielding a sword twice her size.

BOOM: Nova, that dazzlingly delicious devastating display of death. Guaranteed to astound.

So this means I'll have more time to focus on the upcoming plc stuff and the dreaded assignments which are coming up. Though then again perhaps not a lot more time, the coalition and villain group in particular wanted a dominator and the allure of a new Archetype is never hard to resist especially one as wickedly fun as a dom. So Icky Irene was born and got powerlevelled to 12 by the resident farm teams in an hour. Oh happy days.

Icky Irene: the new Plant/Psionic Dominator. Carnivorous vines, a Giant Venus Flytrap pet and the ability to rip enemies apart with psychic wails. Mmm.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Birthday blues

Other than for a select few, I always dread buying presents for people when the annual slew of birthdays come around. For one, you're always at a loss for what to get which is within your budget and when you do, you wonder if they'll just chuck it aside or whatnot. And buying for family members tend to be worse, since unlike friends, you stay together (for now at least) and get treated to the ignominy of seeing those pressies get deposited firmly but politely in some obscure corner of the room/house/loo.

So what do you get for the woman who spends $500 bucks on a cappuccino machine, goes through shoes like Imelda Marcos and thinks nothing about plonking down a few hundreds for cosmetics from Origins and Clinique? Body shop? Not unless I want an additional soon-to-be smothered in dust fixture in the loo. I don't know, you tell me.

And where got time to shop in 2 days?? Huh huh, not with all the CPCM and FMS cum tutorials crap. The last frenzied lap of City of Villains hasn't exactly helped either. Suggestions, anyone?

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Naruto & Bleach on Wii.

Ok, maybe it's time to save up (after paying off certain sums I owe someone ^^) for something other than a new laptop. Something like a Wii playstation for instance, that innovative gaming system where you actually exercise, through varied hand movements and body movements while playing anything from tennis to all time favourite hero combo games from popular all time favourites like Dragonball-Z and Marvel vs Capcom.

Imagine your average arcade 2 player fighting games (which I absolutely suck at- joysticks of the inanimate kind are not my forte) like King of Fighters, then picture having to do all the combos with your hands as the controls and not the joystick, which may look pretty silly at first but it's infinitely more appealing cause hey it's fun and it's a whole lot easier (to me at least) to churn out the correct combos with hands that are decidedly more agile than a joystick.

So when Anthony told me he intends to get the naruto shippuuden and bleach wii games, perhaps even the Jap version before the English one (which will be monthssss more), like any avid fan of the series, I told him I'd certainly visit his place and camp there the whole day. Good workout, Splendid fun, Excellent animation, and based off two favourite anime series, now how much more entertaining can that be.

I'll leave you with some youtube videos of the action between the various characters and trust me they have all the major characters, naruto, sakura, kakashi, all the akatsuki, even ten-ten looks like a veritable sexy bitch when fighting, flashy and smug. ^^ Without further ado.

Deidara vs Gaara

And their moves are both so flashy!!! Especially Deidara's bird. And them Ka Chwar (spiders). Guess who won in the end, just like in the anime and manga. ^^

Naruto vs Kakashi

Naruto vs his 'sensei'. Lol this fight basically entailed alot of hopping about and dodging though there were some nice parts like Naruto's Demon Fox coat and Kakashi's devastatingly spectacular chidori.

Itachi vs Kisame

Akatsuki vs Akatsuki. How much more entertaining can a fight between baddies be? Kisame hits hard and his Special is spectacular but it is Itachi's mangekyo sharingan that steals the cake. And true to form his attacks are like those of an assassin, swift and from the back.

Itachi vs TenTen

TenTen, the weapons specialist of the Gai team generally isn't one of the stronger characters in the series/manga but she sure does have some very flashy moves. And the wii game reflects that, fast and flashy moves that deal less damage say in comparison to Kisame's slower but harder hitting ones. Still that big sword of hers hits hard. ^^

Then of course, there's bleach. And the Wii version looks so good... Basically you can bash anyone up, regardless of which side one is on.

Ichigo v Ulquiorra

This one isn't Wii acually, rather it's from the Bleach computer game(?) Heat the loss. Still the graphics is great, and everyone loves seeing these two face off

Ulquiorra v Grimmjow

The Number 4 and Number 6 Espada face off. While the front looks like alot of bitch slapping, you realise its generally right, cause unlike shinigami, arrancar don't fight with their zanpaktous released in their human form. Grimmjow's attacks are the expected direct, frontal hard hitting ones. Ulquiorra's are well, really cool. Much like the disinterested, destroy and take apart from a distance kind. And his special is the best. No prizes for guessing who won.

Urahara vs Ukitake

Spectacular fight between two taichou class shinigami, this is where you get to see the graphic swordplay and zanpaktou effects in action. ^^

Byakuya vs Ulquiorra

Get to see Byakuya's very pretty bankai in action and more of Ulquiorra's special. Which makes the fights very eventful.

Ichigo v Byakuya

And of course, who can forget the classic rivalry between Ichigo and Byakuya, immortalised in those two 50-something episodes in the fight between the two in soul society. You get to see both bankais in action, but Ichigo's is so fast, it looks almost brutally unfair. ^^

So you see why Anthony's quite hung up over getting the two games, never mind that it's in Jap first and why I fully intend to go over and test run it with him. ^^ Never mind, that we can't understand a word or what they're saying, how hard is it to come up with the hand combos from the manual? Wel, perhaps a little, but still you get to be even if for a couple of minutes those very same characters bashing each other up from the anime series that one avidly follows without fail, every week.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


Watching. Waiting. Falling.

The roiling clouds billowing across the mental landscape.
Omnious, petulant, strident cracks of protest.
Tongues of light stabbing the horizon.
A pack of horses galloping across the dusty plains.
Hooves thundering, eddies of dust twirling in their wake.

And the raging stops, the sudden silence deafening.
Swirled patterns of sand etched into the barren landscape
Radiating out before melding into the cloudless sky.
A triptych of self, silvered sand and clear cerulean sky.

Then we meet. And we touch.

A myriad explosion of colour erupts.
Coruscating flashes of carmine, indigo, magenta.
Sand, sky, self blend into a seamless tapestry of motion and coloured light.
Gripped by a maelstorm of madness, a raucous riot of sensations and emotions.
Lulled into serenity by the comforting embrace of familiarity.

And I am drowning.
Drowning in velvet.

Watching. Waiting. Falling.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Snack Attack 2.

There's a reason why I never liked just zoning out in front of the TV apart from the fact that it's scientifically proven that you burn less calories than other sedentary activities like reading. It's that worrisome yet irresistible urge to keep your hands and mouth occupied while the rest of the body zombifies, eyes glued to that one eyed monster. Which inevitably involves activity of the sort that adds to one's girth and facilitates further fixation of the butt on the couch.

Which is why I usually watch my anime on the laptop and attempt to spend more time in front of the comp instead of the one eyed- monster, snacking is doubly hard if one is worried about dropping bits of Lays all over the keyboard or sloshing juice over it. And when one is gaming, snacking is well nigh impossible, there's hardly even time to get a drink when on one of those momentous three hour long Strike Force missions. So actually, if you want to slim down, gaming is a pretty good bet, two weeks and you'll be svelte if not half-starved from the daily brunch of ham sandwich and lettuce and good ole water.

But sometimes, we get cravings and even though pregnant women get to get away with theirs, we're not immune to ours. And when it comes, you jolly well want whatever it is you crave, ridiculously rich or artery clogging fattening it may be. So today my sweet tooth acted up and I was feeling a little peckish for junk food in general. And since it's Children's Day which means You-Know-Who is at home, I put the weekly grocery trip to good use on her tab.

Even the Sister's Crabtree & Evelyn's All Butter cookies were not spared. Which on a totally unrelated note, I am astounded by how people will pay $20 for One tin of Butter cookies... who cares if it's hand made or made in England.. the classic Kjeldsens' butter cookies was like a quarter that price... The Milk & Honey Pocky which was imported from Japan and stocked at NTUC was the first to go. I have to admit, the Japanese are really ingenious in their different creations for confectionaries and snacks, if I stayed in Japan I'd be a lard ball by now.

The Lay kettle chips were excellent too, thick and crunchy and I just like my chips plain, sans the BBQ flavour or other increasingly exotic and strange offerings they have these days. There's just something so wonderfully addictive about chomping on potato chips, it's not only the flavour that entices, the texture and crunch keep you going for more till one's stuffed or the bag's empty. And it's usually the latter.

Which means I'll need to jog a whole lot more the coming few weeks just to burn off the extra gazillion calories gained in the recent snack fest. Otherwise, I'll really be able to sing along to Queen Latifah's Big, Blond & Beautiful. No qualms about the pig out session though, what's life if you don't indulge a little now and then. And no, don't tell me stuff like it'll be healthier. Balance baby, balance. As long as you make up for it exercise wise (or at least try very hard to) and don't let snacks replace your meals, it's fine.

Well the latter has never been a problem for me, I love my food, when I have it... Now excuse me, I hear the butter cookies calling.