Holy crap! I’ve got so much crap to talk about that I may not fit in any anime crap, lol. But I’ll try. From old layouts to new readers, from post updates to blog widgets, from shiny iMacs to blazing Zazzles, and maybe some random tunes too. But what else? Anime mascots? Seems like every anime blog is caving in with their own new mascot~ not only Mimi, but Koshiko, Dancing Queen and the latest Meimi132 too~ inspired by DC no doubt, lol. Fortunately, I haven’t succumbed to peer pressure… yet, lol. But we’ll see.
Blog Worth. First off, let’s take care of some impressive updates in blog worth. Remember WebsiteOutlook.com in my last post? Well, not only did Clan Blue Panthers a.k.a. Panther jump from $2664.50 to $5752.40 USD, but Gordonator leap-frogged from $2562.30 to a whopping $7307.30 USD! Both exceeding the $5139.20 value of Mimi’s blog? Ah, now that makes *more* sense, lol. For now.
Welcome to the Toybox. Next, greetings to Blowfish, JennK, and a trio of unique artists~ Lene, Coco and Skulko~ for visiting the Toybox. Although I think Blowfish dropped by earlier this year, and Skulko hasn’t officially commented yet, lol. But to those artists, I’m gonna need a few kicks in the ass to keep my artistic energy afloat. Rivals? Why not? To anyone else who’s randomly cruised by or lurked through the traffic from Far-East to Middle-East Asia, Australia, Eastern-to-Western Europe, Africa, South-to-North America or elsewhere, gracias and arigato.
Immortal Toybox Design. You know what? Even now in 2008, I still get compliments on my “Black Toybox” design, created back in April 2007. As I recall, my original intent was to design an *ultimate* design for both my website and blog, one I wouldn’t get tired of, even after years. So far, so good! Taking a peek back then, the huge header and triple-column structure hasn’t changed at all. Clearly, as internet speeds have sky-rocketed, having a huge rotating header doesn’t matter so much anymore, and lets me add tons of banners, widgets and gadgets like Gravatar, CommentLuv, ShoutMix, LiveTraffic and Zazzle, lol. In fact, if your blog is old enough, you can steal glimpses of your past versions at Archive.org, just like Danny had done back in February. Ugh, before 2007, my past designs were horribly grotesque. Probably worse than yours, lol.
Team & Guest Bloggers. In one recent discussion with Panther about co-bloggers, I had actually considered offering some of my services. Even started a reply. But eventually, I had to consider my own limited time and energy. And abandoned it. Yet something else struck me. After seeing his co-blogger Little Neko’s recent post, I hopped over to check out her blog. But to my dismay, I found that she’d been looking for other writers too, lol. When it began to feel like a “bait and switch” or “musical chairs”, I admitted got turned off. So for me, an originally one-authored blog should *ideally* maintain the identity of its author. Like a sense of brand familiarity or security or loyalty. Or so I thought. Could be refreshing fun. Could be a cheap passing trend. Or both. Toybox co-bloggers? Nahhh.
Though I must admit, back in the “Matrix” fanfic days (2003-2004), it was wildly dramatic, angsty and addictive to write, direct and captain a hovercraft with 3-4 female co-writers (from Israel, Hungary, Great Britain, Spain, etc.) in an international group fanfic. The crew of the hovercraft Nosferatu. Addictive. But then again, blogging and fanfiction are quite different.
Anime Titles. Bahhh, enough with the artsy-fartsy intellectual stuff, lol. Here are my latest anime speed-reviews. Four more anime titles-seasons watched and completed since last month, for a total of 51 so far this year (or about 150 across the last 3 years). LOL, can you top that?
Mars Daybreak . My 48th anime title-or-season of the year. Not bad. An entertaining action-packed dive through the underwater depths, for a sea-soaked total 3 of 5 stars.
Genshiken 2 . My 49th anime title-or-season of the year. Wow! The hilarious yet touching continuation of the first season and OVAs. It’s amazing how faithful the anime is to the manga, sometimes even funnier! While I only give short seasons a max of 4 stars, this second season, combined with the first season and OVAs, finally deserves 5 of 5 stars!
Nodame Cantabile . My 50th anime title-or-season of the year. Oh wow! Now this series is an extraordinary tapesty in the romantic-comedic styles of the classic “Kare Kano” and the rock-and-roll “Nana”, but colored and interwoven through searingly sublime piano, violin and orchestral music. Probably one of the most original, breathtaking, and utterly unforgettable series in a long time. Easily 5 of 5 stars!
Naruto – S2 . My 51st anime title-or-season of the year. You may not believe me, but two years ago, I was so unexpectedly impressed with “Naruto – S1”, that I gave it 5 of 5 stars! However, while the second season of 26 episodes seemed comparatively lacking in emotion or focus, it’s still remains a kick-ass anime to watch during high-energy treadmill runs, lol. Yup, a respectable 4 of 5 stars!
Coldplay Addiction. Okay, enough of the reviews… Gahhh, damn you, Mimi-chan, lol. Ever since you posted that YouTube of the anime Code Geass – Set to Viva La Vida about 2-3 weeks ago, I’ve been addicted to that song! Hadn’t been a Coldplay fan before, still not, but lately I can’t get through the day without hearing that tune once or twice. Just like you said, “seems like this song was made for Code Geass”, lol. And one more time, here it is.
Code Geass – Set to Coldplay’s Viva La Vida
Razzle Zazzle. Ah, finally, now onto the second half of my super-long “better do it now before you forget” post. Well, my Zazzle order finally arrived a couple nights ago. Three items~ two came out great, and one not-so-great, lol.
 Here’s the first one~ Angsty Momo on a small forest-green “Basic American Apparel” T-shirt. She turned out awesome! Brighter than I expected. While the background in the print transfer came out *bluer* than the original image file, it probably had a 50% chance of turning *greener* too, lol. No biggie, but now I know what to expect. Other than the image transfer, the shirt material feels smooth and light. Very comfortable. I’m 5′ 10″ and 150 pounds, so the small size fits perfectly. Great choice.
 Here’s the second one~ Property of Mimi’s Rage on a small black “Basic American Apparel” T-shirt. Like Angsty Momo, awesome image transfer. And again, brighter than expected, based on the original image file. But no biggie, since I love how the camouflage effect turned out. Almost shiny in the light, lol. Just like the forest-green shirt, the material feels smooth and light. Very comfortable. Again, the small size fits perfectly. Another great choice.
 But here’s the bad news~ Property of Mimi’s Rage on a small black “Basic Long Sleeve” shirt. Yuck! Awful! Horrible image transfer. I’m not an expert, but my guess is that because of the difference in fabric between “Basic” and “Basic American Apparel”, a different transfer method was used. And an inferior image was produced. But besides the image, while the material may not feel as smooth, it still feels rather light and comfortable. Especially in colder weather. Again, the small size fits great. But I’d recommend a crisper image with less gradients or shades.
iMac Attack. Finally, we come to the fourth and final segment of my entry, as hinted in my previous post. Let’s welcome my brand new 24-inch iMac powerhouse! Plus VMware Fusion 2 software to create virtual machines (hence VM), which allow the parallel installation of Windows XP alongside Leopard, haha. Yeah-yeah, I know, why add XP? Well, so I can install all of the Windows applications my laptop uses, without buying expensive new Mac software, and switch between the Windows OS and Mac OS whenever I want. I’m not sure many people know this Mac ability. But once I found out about it, I definitely turned my eye towards owning an iMac. Besides, “with my aging 3-year-old Dell laptop pausing to take a leak more often these last few months”, I definitely needed a new computer, lol.
Haha, Windows XP installation complete! And pretty quickly I might add. First VMware Fusion, then Windows XP. Then within the XP virtual machine, followed by Mozilla Firefox, Trend Micro Internet Security, Adobe CS3, PHP Designer, and of course, Winamp, haha. Over time, the rest of my laptop applications will be added. And hopefully, I can trim down the load on my laptop. But you know what? Lately, I’ve felt that the recent iMacs have been geared towards converting disgruntled PC users, while not necessarily aiming to please loyal long-time Mac users. Especially with those shiny glassy reflective anti-Mac screens, lol. But I don’t care. I can do both.
Smexy Shell. P.S. Oops, edit~ I almost forgot to add that having an XP ghost in an iMac’s shell (haha, “Ghost in the Shell”, get it?) would be like having Bill Gates’ brain in Nicole Kidman’s body. Haha, can you imagine it? Nope, or just barely! And of course, we all know my fascination with European accents (or accents of European origin), hehe. Not only Nicole Kidman or Kate Beckinsale, but Angelina Jolie’s Lara Croft and that wondrously-eccentric singer Kate Nash. Maybe I’ll post about Kate’s “Dickhead” or “Shit Song” tunes sometime. Bahhh, why not now? ^_~
Kate Nash – Dickhead