The one with the crazy driving.

Ar tonelico - Character Cast
Ar tonelico – Character Cast

I used to be a very casual driver, driving leisurely and infrequently, since I like to stay at home more. I’m still an infrequent driver (when it comes to leisure), but when it comes to work, I drive… a lot. Especially since I work everyday. Nexi requires me to drive at least once a day, and the restaurant requires me to deliver once a day. However, these numbers are mostly minimums, I’m probably in the car about 40% of the day. That’s actually a lot of driving. I used to avoid driving as much as possible, but now I’m driving more than I expected to. Another thing I’ve noticed also – I still follow the rules of the road as best as I can, I take safety driving in mind since I took driver’s education in high school. Although I may not stay in my lane when turning all the time, I still follow it when I’m in the city (or when traffic is heavy).

City driving brings to light another problem – I mentioned earlier that I used to be a casual, leisure driver, but after a few trips to the city, all that’s changed. City traffic is fast-paced, and if you don’t take the initiative, you’ll get stuck in intersections or slow traffic a lot. I took a casual approach to city driving when I first drove in it, but I learned the hard way about the harsh reality of it. As a result, my city driving “sense” is now turned on all the time. I drive 10 Km over the speed limit. I take sharp corners as fast as I can. I cut people off (haha, really, I don’t feel bad about this even though I swear at anybody who does it to me). Now, Dennis is a psycho driver, but I was actually able to keep up with him the other day, which just makes me realize how much the quality of my driving has declined. If I keep this up, my car may be back in the shop before I know it. Tonight, I was doing deliveries, and even though I was dead tired, I pwned the road. WTF, what the hell am I saying?! I’m not supposed to “pwn” anything, that’s not safe driving!!! 区やしいーーー!

D.C.II ~DA CAPO II~ - Amakase Minatsu
D.C.II ~DA CAPO II~ – Amakase Minatsu

NCIX sent me an e-mail confirming shipment of my 4 GB USB drive just now. That was fast! I can’t wait to get it. Just on time too, because I found a neat little utility called Folder Lock. It basically does what my SwissBit utility did – lock my USB drive to make it inaccessible without a password. However, Folder Lock does more than that – it can lock individual folders and files, it can be copied to all types of removable drives, and it utilizes 256-bit Blowfish encryption. Just so you know, online banking websites currently use only 128-bit encryption, so your files are safer than your information at your online banking website! However, just to reassure you, 128-bit encryption is still extremely secure – 256-bit encryption is just downright paranoid overkill. Which works fine for me, any level above 128-bit assures me that the average third-rate hacker won’t be cracking my files anytime soon. Not that I have anything confidential to hide. I mostly encrypt all my and HANGA Shousetsu series to keep prying eyes away, just in case somebody wants to steal my work (yeah, right, who WOULD?).

I’m big on discovering new artists or artists that have been around, but have that nice sound that I like. For me, I love almost any kind of genre (except country music – seriously, I always thought that cowboys were gay, and Brokeback Mountain proved it for me, but I digress), but what I love the most is melody. Instrumentation and music arrangement are a close second, and lyrics are dead last to me. To be quite honest, I don’t really read too much into lyrics – they mean nothing to me anyway, since I listen to a lot of music, no matter the language. For example, Polish rock – I don’t understand Polish, but I’m a big fan of Ziyo and Formacja Niezywych Schabuff. I got into them thanks in no small part to an old friend of mine, Piotr, who moved to my town with his family from Warsaw when we were in Grade 6. Unfortunately, we had a bit of a falling out in high school because of difference of opinion, but the music he introduced me to stuck with me forever. He also introduced me to The Cure, Pet Shop Boys, and Jean Michel Jarre, along with a few other Polish rock bands. If anybody knows Piotr (you’ll know who he is – tall, blonde, awkward fellow who runs… well… strangely ^_^), son of Jerzy (Jerry) and Bozena (Bulgumia), point him to this blog. I say hello, how are you? I’m still alive.

Anyway, I totally digressed, but I’ll get to the point now. Unfortunately, there are too many artists in the world, all of them trying to make their mark in the world, and too many of them utterly failing. However, there are some artists that stick out for me among all the mainstream and indie artists. However, to find them, unfortunately, I have to use a shallow method – how hot they are (girls) or how cool they are (dudes). I was interested in the CD cover of a girl wearing a bikini and rollerskates who went by the name of Mai. Just Mai. However, after first glance, I noticed that she wasn’t really wearing a bikini – it was painted on!! O_O

The title of the album is MAISELF, and… wow. After the first listen, I liked what I was hearing. It’s a very J-Pop sound with good melody and arrangement – I might even buy the album. Unfortunately, the album cover is a bit racy, even if she covers up the really noticeable stuff, so I posted it behind a more tag. I won’t rant anymore, so click on, if you dare.


The scans inside the booklet are even better, but I’d much rather you buy it to enjoy the full package. Even though the artists don’t get a lot from album sales, still, we should do what we can (and attend their concerts). We still need CDs so that they can sign them for us lucky fans. I may hate the RIAA, but we shouldn’t boycott the artists because of a bunch of fat cat moguls. If it wasn’t for them, us CD collectors would have nothing in our bookshelves and CD towers.

D.C.II ~DA CAPO II~ - Onsen Fun
D.C.II ~DA CAPO II~ – Onsen Fun

Fun, indeed. I’d sure like to join them. If Minatsu-chan was in this picture, I can picture her still wearing that cute gyuu-neko hat!

Additional Resources

The one with all the Lesson Reviews.

I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with this blog ever since I started using Hummingbird last fall. So, I decided to try an idea of mine called Lesson Reviews. Essentially, it’s more of a “what I learned from X anime” than a review, but the thing is, there will be good and […]

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