azurite: (cat and mouse)
Not having nor really wanting to own an iPhone so long as it's tied to AT&T in any size, shape, or form, I missed the news about an Apple employee accidentally losing a prototype of the new iPhone, and how someone else found it, tried to return it, got stonewalled by Apple (because they don't even tell their own employees everything), and then ended up selling* it to tech blog Gizmodo for $5K.

(* This is kind of disputed - keep reading.)

Until tonight, when I watched Jon Stewart's "Appholes" clip on a referral from a classmate. I didn't know it had escalated to the point where, though the phone had been returned by the Gizmodo editor who bought it (Jason Chen), Apple got San Mateo authorities to raid Chen's house on the suspicion that he had actually STOLEN the device, despite Chen's compliance with Apple's formal request to get the device back, and Gizmodo's posted (I think) reports on the device and how they acquired it.

Of course, Gizmodo's initial report DID leave some things why they paid $5K for it (supposedly this was an "exclusive access fee" and that Giz would help to return the device after their report. Still not cool, still legally gray, if not outright illegal in that it seems to be aiding in the "theft" of something that's clearly not theirs, bricked or not. Why did it take more than a month between the loss date and Gizmodo's first posting about the device? WHAT WAS HAPPENING IN THE MEANTIME? Or did it take weeks for Giz to even get the device, and it was the scuzball source who took so long hanging onto property that wasn't his?)

The person who found it had tried to contact Apple instead of the Apple employee whose name was so readily findable on the phone through the Facebook app, and was stonewalled due to Apple's own policies, but to go from there to trying to sell the device to tech blogs? Where the hell's the logic in that?

I can understand, at least in part, why Apple decided to call it "stolen" at that point: the employee lost it, couldn't get it back at the place where he lost it (presumably), couldn't get the contact of anyone who had found it (presumably), and was relying on that person to find him. Did they? No, apparently not, despite having access to his FACEBOOK account! (For at least a little while before the phone got bricked, anyway. But maybe not long enough to remember and find any useful contact information, but geez, there's way more to be done than that when a device like that is lost. But I guess people rightfully don't have much expectation of others being at all generous when their phone is lost or stolen, especially these days....)

So, who's in the wrong here? Well, one, for Gizmodo, for buying the phone and continuing to report on it, instead of directly contacting the guy who'd lost it or trying harder than their source to get in touch with Apple immediately. In that sense, they were handling stolen goods, rather than just something that was lost and found.

Two, the source, for not trying hard enough to contact the original Apple Engineer, for trying harder to get ahold of someone higher up at Apple, and of course, for selling the damn thing, which automatically seems to make the person less of a good samaritan and more of a profiteer. (Disclaimer: he was drunk when he found it, probably not-so-sober when he may have glanced at the Facebook app and seen the owner's real name, but not thought to write it down, and too late the next day when the phone got bricked. Could he still have done more? Yes, in my opinion. But maybe I just have high expectations/standards of people. Figure it this way: if you'd want me to go the distance for you and your property, I would: if you would for me. I don't have to know you, but I would, because to me, it's common decency.)

And yeah, Apple's in the wrong for pushing on the San Mateo authorities to the point of STORMING a journalist's home and taking his personal electronics, data, etc. (Maybe. It's possible that Apple really had nothing to do with it outside of providing them with the information that here was this guy who'd obtained a phone that they'd determined was Apple's property and he may have aided in a crime by purchasing it. Apple reports potential crimes! Good for them. Or something.) Supposedly they charged in during dinner--no knocking ahead of time, no calling on the phone. (ETA: "Dinner" being "out of the house." This wasn't made clear initially, so thanks to [ profile] azhp for clearing it up. And Chen was told he could get reimbursed for his bashed-in door. Why don't police just hire a lockpick?)

I agree with Stewart: "Appholes!" But I personally dislike them more for their partnership with AT&T than for this, because no matter what they told the SMPD, it's the police's fault for following bad information and for acting the way they did.

Gizmodo is staying silent on the issue of Chen's house more or less being raided on the iPhone posts, but they did share Chen's experience with the search online. They're also apparently promoting those blog posts/comments that agree with their POV and standing by Chen. On the one hand: good. They should stand by their reporter. Don't pretend that he's not/Gizmodo's not, because then Chen getting raided is only the result of their already dumb behavior, especially in regards to the Apple employee's identity and activity that resulted in the loss of the phone in the first place. (But the phone was bricked the day after it was lost right? Does that mean that Gizmodo's source didn't pass on the info about the Apple employee whose name was in the Facebook account?) They have a chance of fighting the SMPD's behavior toward Chen and possibly Apple if they stand by the fact that they're journalists and protect their sources with the shield law. But I don't know if their "source" deserves that kind of protection, even if Giz is otherwise a news organization.

Rival Engadget is not making a big deal out of this issue, likely because people already know that they were offered the same deal to buy the lost phone as Gizmodo was. Good for them.

Some people are thinking this was all a huge Apple PR stunt. I disagree: they're notorious for their secrecy, and I doubt that would abruptly change just to garner hype for an upcoming device. They do have controlled tests of their products, some of them going out into public in the hands of employees, and I think this was along those lines. The veil of secrecy gig works much more for them than "leaked product!1!!" does.

I'm basically confused here, because on the one hand, as a journalist, I value the shield laws more than the average person might. But I'm also an Apple fan, iPhone and AT&T opinions aside, and I know their attitude when it comes to corporate secrets. I don't always agree with it, but I know that if I trusted an employee with something, he accidentally lost it, and I tried to get it back, I'd defend him and anyone who didn't get in touch with either of us comes across as a thief.

I'm more pissed at the source that hung onto the phone than anyone else, and even as a journalist, even if I treat Gizmodo as a news organization despite THEIR poor decision-making, what benefit does it serve ANYONE to protect that source? I say: let 'em burn. He deserves whatever lawsuit is coming his way.
azurite: (blue flower)
Interesting things that have happened as of late:
* Sci Fi Channel plans to change its name to SyFy, to supposedly attract a wider audience (because "sci fi" is still recognized as a derivative of "science fiction," which supposedly conjures images of pimply boys playing D&D in their mom's basements. Well, even if they do, those guys run the world now, so hah! Way to generalize! Also, way to stereotype the audience you're supposedly trying to appeal to! ). Fact is, they want [more crappy] non-sci-fi programming. I think they're going to bomb on this front no matter what they try and explain.

SyFy, meet Song Airlines. Now, both of you go back to the class and sit with the cobwebs.

* 4Kids releases uncut unsubbed episodes of Yu-Gi-Oh! on their YouTube channel (a day after [ profile] littlekuriboh subscribes to them on a lark). Now if only we could get proper subs-- not dubtitles, including for the opening theme song (which should remain unchanged, plzkxthx!). Then put them on DVD and release them in a massive boxed set. Which I would buy in a New York minute.

Tuesday's NSLS Orientation meeting went okay. I goofed a little by not having enough time to finish my agenda before the meeting and print it out, so I was really winging it when the meeting actually got started. The meeting got started a bit late too, because another group was in the room until nearly the last minute. I hardly had any time to set up and figure out how all the equipment worked. I was so nervous, I forgot to do the icebreaker first, and when we finally did do it, I realized it wasn't a great way to sort people into SNT groups-- I had people stopping to talk to one other person on their side of the room (after I asked people to move to one side of the room or the other, based on a choice: e.g. "Chocolate or Vanilla?" where chocolate is the left side of the room and vanilla is the right), but someone pointed out that everyone would talk to at least one person that another person HAD NOT talked to, so everyone would be in everyone else's group! But still, there were enough commonalities for groups to form-- for the most part. The folks that only attended the online orientation or folks that couldn't make the Tuesday one for whatever reason will be assigned by our new SNT Coordinator, June.

Class got out early yesterday, so I came home and relaxed with some CSI:NY repeats until 7pm. I took a nap, fully intending to be awake for the new episode at 10pm, but I didn't wake up on time! I'm surprised Baba and Grandpa didn't come in to wake me up or anything-- I kept right on sleeping until 12:30am! I ended up catching up on the new episode this morning via

Strange people on Also, spoilers for 5x12 )

I saw another dead animal today. This time it was a cat, which... I don't know how to put it, but it hurts. I love cats, and to see one run over just breaks my heart. It also reinforces the fact that I'll never drive and think a good lot of drivers are complete idiots. That said, yes, I do appreciate getting rides home and things like that, but only from people I trust to be attentive when they're on the road.

At least it seems as if whoever hit the cat (or maybe someone found the cat) brought it to the side of the road-- it was on the patch of lawn under a tree, positioned in such a way that the cat could have been napping, dreaming of chasing a mouse, with the way its paws were kind of twisted. But I realized it was dead when I saw its eyes were blackened and its organs had been squished to one end of its body. Other than that, the cat was surprisingly clean-- a bright orange tabby coat, very beautiful. It didn't look like it had been run over, but still... *sigh* I didn't see a collar on it, but that doesn't mean it wasn't someone's pet. Even if it wasn't, I still feel awful. No animal deserves to die because of some idiot driver.

Career Day for the Journalism department is today. I better pack up my things and head over there now.
azurite: (ffx-2 - yuna will fly)
Today was one of those days where you're dreading it, "looking forward" to it in the way Marie Antoinette looked forward to her beheading, and you're freaking out to the point where you think if you subconsciously run a hand through your hair, clumps the size of Mothra balls will come out.

That was my day.

Today was the day I was supposed to give my presentation on "Gendered Language in the Double Standard in Final Fantasy X and X-2" in my Women, Men, and Media class (JOUR 371), and needless to say, I wasn't as prepared as I wanted to be. The whole time in Seattle, I'd made a lot of excuses why I couldn't go out shopping-- I had to work on my project. And work on it I did. But, as I discovered today in the library, working when I normally would have been at work (Ken gave me the day off, which probably saved my soul), I worked on the wrong parts.

I worked hard on assembling images (and I was mad because Sally's house didn't have Wi-Fi and sitting in Josh's room using an Ethernet cable was a pain in the ass), writing the script, and timing the images. I should have rehearsed the script and realized it was about three times too long (10-15 minutes); then I could have saved myself some of the grief I had today.

Well, during that woulda-been-at-work period, I did manage to get a successful recording done, but not with my mic as I thought; I ended up leaning in too close to the computer to use the built-in mic and nearly getting Carpal Tunnel from leaving hand cramped, finger on the touchpad to scroll through my script (I edited the paper one so much, it was useless). For some dumb reason, no "vocal instrument" wanted to work with my USB Mic and not cause a buttload of static, so I had to switch.

Then for some dumb reason, I thought I had to have my DVI cable (I didn't, since I planned on burning it to DVD), so I had Grandpa bring it to me (though he ended up bringing my whole shoebox of electronic gizmos). I got to class about 20 minutes prior to start time, but all of a sudden my project CRASHED. When I reopened it, a bunch of clips and timing adjustments that I'd made were gone. To make matters worse, in buying and installing Leopard yesterday, I neglected to consider the incompatibility with certain programs or add-ons, like my GeeThree Slick Effects that I was using for titles and such in iMovie '06. (I realize now, if I'd just gone to the website, I could have updated them and avoided the hassle of trying to create the titles in a still image in Photoshop.)

Well, I doubted God would strike me down on request, nor did I think any deities of Fortune would decide to randomly have Eisenstock cancel class today, so I stuck it out... and of course, class wasn't canceled and presentations went on as scheduled. At first, I thought, "I'm doomed, there's no way I can make my presentation. If she'll let me go next week, I can at least accept a grade deduction." But no, we can't next week, because it's our mock final.

Oh, and on top of all that stress, we had an exam I forgot about! I didn't study for it in the least bit, but it was all multiple choice, so I hope I did okay, anyway.

Back to the project-- everyone else but one person went ahead of me while I attempted to assemble and time the fragments of my project into something normal. And I thought I succeeded-- though I was nervous as hell, I sent it to iDVD, set myself a title screen, and then burned the DVD (which I'd bought at the bookstore only 25 minutes before class). Luckily, questions and the next presenter took long enough for it to burn, and it even worked in the DVD player without any hassle... but the timing was HORRID. Plus, the crash had removed one of the adjustments I'd made to a clip's volume, so I was completely drowned out by "real Emotion" during the second half of my presentation. Luckily, both the professor and my classmates seemed to take it in stride.

She asked the standard question of "Which analytical framework applies to the issue you presented," so I went on for a bit about how the reflection hypothesis theory applies, since video games don't accurately reflect the variety of women in society today-- only docile, demure women and provocative, sexy, powerful women. Hey, some of us can fall in-between, you know!

She also accepted my (true) excuse about my printer running out of ink, so I have until tonight to email her my media packet (unfortunately, I just remembered I have an NSLS meeting at 7pm, which means I'll have to take the meeting minutes and not work on this during then) and until the end of this week to put a hard copy in her Journalism department inbox. Whew... I think. I think she's also cutting slack for the Media Critique, because people couldn't download an evaluation form necessary for analyzing the websites that this week's critique was supposed to be about.

Anyway, with all this madness, I neglected to eat at all today-- until just a bit ago, when I sat down with a full El Pollo Loco meal. I wolfed the whole thing down-- burrito, salad, drink and all-- except the flan, that's dessert. I'm considerably less stressed (even if I have work ahead of me-- ugh, four, possibly five or even SIX more articles for the Sundial within the next 7 days!), and I hope to stay that way through December, make it through my winter break, and somehow end up in Washington, D.C. for my internship.

...And sometime this week I have to see Financial Aid and Prof. Bowen about that, too. Ugh. Always stuff to do!

I blame this all on Alaska Airlines.


Nov. 22nd, 2007 11:08 pm
azurite: (autumn kitty)
Greetings from FREEZING Seattle, WA... er, technically, Bellevue, I guess. Getting here wasn't so bad, but the schmucks at Alaska Airlines somehow managed to not put my checked bag (only the one, not even that big or heavy) on my flight, so I had to wait until about a half hour ago for it to be delivered to Sally's house.

Right now, we're (meaning me, my dad & Kathleen, and a few of the other cousins and aunts/uncles) are staying at a friend of Sally's house; I guess her family's out elsewhere for the holidays. It's a bit awkward to be in the home of someone I don't even know, but they did say it's okay...

And frankly, even if Sam (cousin) did say that it's "shady," at least THEY have free Wi-Fi. Seriously, I'm not the first person to point out to Sally and the boys that NOT having Wi-Fi at their house is equivalent to living in the Stone Age. (For those of you with Dial-Up, you're prehistoric.)

The Thanksgiving dinner was DELICIOUS, even though I got a stomachache after the fact-- actually though, based on the human digestive system, there's no way anything I ate at Thanksgiving could have made me sick, even if it was something I'm mysteriously allergic to. I think it was that muffin I picked up at Sea-Tac while waiting for Dan and my bag (which never came while I was there). It was one of those Costco muffins-- delicious, humongous, and bad for you, but you eat it anyway.

Pre and slightly-post dinner, I managed to work on the DIVs for "Ace of Hearts," the Sailor V x Kaitou Ace fanlisting I just started. It's about due, and I'm glad Michael (aka Honus, aka cousin-in-law, husband of Brooke) helped me out with it. Now I understand better how DIVs and CSS can work in tandem! So far it looks great, but I need to write the About, Rules, and Extras pages, make some Codes, and then, of course, Join! And promote... kinda like I am now. Pre-promoting, anyway.

I also managed to watch CSI-- I'm glad Sara got mentioned at least a little. The way the previews made it sound, the game was overtaking the lab and no one thought twice about Sara, which would have infuriated me. I liked how the lesser-seen lab techs got more time in the limelight in this episode (and Hodges had HIMSELF killed in a scenario? Wow, talk about his ego finally having been knocked down a few pegs).

I've also made headway on my portfolio for Journalism; I need access to a printer to print everything out, though. An aesthetic question of sorts: if I have these newspaper articles mounted on papers inside a 3-ring binder, what arrangement is easiest to read; with the headline closest to the rings (and you read the columns going AWAY from the binder) or the headlines closest to the edge of the page, and you read TOWARD the rings?

Had to buy a new phone, too-- just another RAZR. The 3G phone I bought for Japan finally died. The past few days, it was getting hard to open, and then on Wednesday, the screen started to flicker until it finally died and I couldn't turn it back on, even when I adjusted the battery. While I don't consider myself a hardcore phone user, I do USE it everyday for at least one phone call... but still, a little over a year strikes me as a pretty pathetic life not just for a battery, but for a phone's casing and everything in general..

The new phone is a bit different-- mine, while still a RAZR, was a different model (the V3x, from Europe). It takes some getting used to, but because syncing is so easy on the Mac, I've already got all my old contacts back, along with my calendar. I've also set the first four of my "Fave Five," though to be honest, I have no idea who #5 should be. The rest are Mom, Dad, Jill, and Baba & Grandpa. In any case, I hope by having a branded phone now, things'll be easier for me-- I can now access T-Zones, and there's no worries about incompatible phones on the website, weird text messages, etc. (Of course, I stopped getting those mysterious text messages on my old RAZR ages ago, when they finally updated their support-- I think.) I hope it also helps bring my bill down, since I was paying extra for minutes I didn't use and unlimited text messages WITHOUT myFaves. I still have the T-Mobile Hot Spot access though, which means I can go to any Starbucks or Borders and just type my heart out. That might be a nice way to spend the afternoon, especially since I won't really be able to do any "Black Friday" shopping-- unless someone else buys for me. I have to pay for my WII deposit (though it turns out I have 10 more days, since the forms I've been stressing over filling out were the digital copies, but they just sent the paper copies today).

I didn't get to announce about being accepted into the Washington Internship Institute at dinner, like I hoped-- Dad must have heard about it from Baba & Grandpa, and then it filtered through the family grapevine. When I told Dad about the costs, he started to think it wasn't legit-- and for a minute, he really had ME worried, too. Sometimes I wonder how gullible I really am; when something really sounds great to (or for) me, I probably don't stop to consider the consequences or other possibilities out there.

But it does look legit-- I mean, it's a sponsored program from Golden Key, one of my honor societies. But what I think is a good idea is trying to contact some people who supposedly were interns in the program before and find out what they thought.

What else? I'm exhausted and still have a stomachache-- so even though I'm on a couch in a room with curtains that won't close, I think I'll go to bed. This isn't really a vacation, after all...
azurite: (ffx-2 - yuna will fly)
I'm looking for girls/women who have played FFX-2. As you may know, I'm doing a paper for my JOUR 371 class, "Women, Men and Media," titled Gendered Language and the Double Standard in the Final Fantasy X and X-2 Games.

I've got a lot of research so far, but I'd like the voices of some female gamers out there to help liven my presentation up a bit (and I don't mean literal voices, though if you want to submit a *.wav or *.mp3 of you SPEAKING, that's fantastic). I'd like any or all of these questions answered, if you have the time...

(1) Did you play FFX? Why or why not? If you did play it, did you finish it? Why or why not?
(2) Why did you play FFX-2?
(3) Did you enjoy it? Why or why not?

Thank you....
azurite: (hp - harry & draco sound fx)
When I was younger, I wanted to be a fashion designer. Throughout high school, I came to love Journalism so much (but hated the program at my school) so much that I wanted to go to college to become a teacher. Now, I might still consider teaching, but probably not at the primary education (elementary through high school) level. I'm considering going to graduate school for my Master's or even my Ph.D so I can teach at a higher education institution someday.

As of right now though, my dream job would be to work as an editor of some sort (e.g. copy editor, features editor) at a magazine, especially one like Glamour or similar. I'd love to edit work that I love to read-- whether it's magazine journalism, which is my major and emphasis, or literature (like chick lit).

The Dumbledore article that I've been working on (read: slaving over) the past week finally got published today, but some WHACK JOB editor changed the critical nut-graf (a.k.a. the lead, for those who know journalism jargon). The current lead reads:

I have to admit, I was surprised at first. I came back from the AIDS Walk on Oct. 21 only to discover that both a good chunk of southern California and Albus Dumbledore, the beloved headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from J.K. Rowling's best-selling "Harry Potter" series were gay. The two were mutually exclusive events, by the way.

Now, what's wrong with that lead? Well, obviously, it makes it sound like I'm surprised that "a good chunk" of Southern California is gay. (The final sentence also doesn't make any sense.)

Anyone that knows me would know, very little surprises me, especially when it comes to homosexuality. I'm not claiming I have hyperactive gaydar or anything, but I was raised in San Francisco: gayness doesn't scare me. I have good friends who are gay. Hell, I'm bi! I get along well with the LGBTA people on campus-- they're fun. And while Northern California might have more gays per square mile (I don't even know that for a fact, but I certainly imagine it could be true), Southern California having any/a lot of gays WOULD NOT surprise me.

The original nut graf read: I have to admit, I was surprised at first. I came back from the AIDS Walk on Oct. 21 only to discover that both a good chunk of southern California and Albus Dumbledore, the beloved headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from J.K. Rowling's best-selling "Harry Potter" series were flaming. The two were mutually exclusive events, by the way.

See the difference? (It's the word "flaming," for those who didn't know.) It was meant to be a witty pun -a double entendre, if you will, referring to the Southern California fires. Someone who is gay might be called any number of things; one of them is "flaming." AFAIK, that's not a BAD thing. It's not negative or insulting, the way "faggot" et. al. are.

I don't know which editor changed it or why, though the wire editor, David, who's here with me in my Investigative Journalism class, told me that it's because "flaming" would get the LGBTA club on campus up in arms and mad at us. Paul, the editor-in-chief, told me it doesn't matter WHO we piss off, because the Daily Sundial pisses off almost everyone (people, organizations, etc.) on campus. Danielle doesn't know who edited it, either. NONE of that makes me feel better.

This is what I get for wanting someone to "look over" my work. Admittedly, I'm a bit concerned about my grade, but not to the point where I want someone to edit my work where it can get horribly misconstrued and get ME in trouble with strangers OR people I'm normally on good terms with.

I tried to nip this in the bud by mentioning the original context and apologizing to anyone that might be offended by either version in the comments section of the Sundial's website, but there still might be angry people that write or email in and again, I won't get told about it in time to make a response.

What this boils down to is a life lesson: I want to be an editor, but not the kind of editors I have or have had. I wanted to be a teacher, but not like the ones I had in high school. I want to edit to help people and to clarify messages, but I want to WORK with the writer-- which means I'm not going to be in the newspaper industry, because apparently deadline trumps over intent.

This is why I like having Dragonfayth as a moderated archive-- while it pisses me off that some people are "repeat offenders" who constantly need simply spelling and grammar checks, I appreciate the final product for being that much more readable. When I ask betas to look over my own fanfiction, they catch things that I couldn't, whether I read over my work once or ten times, whether it was just on-screen or printed out. I recognize the importance of editors (or betas, or pre-readers, or whatever you call them) not just because I AM one, and because I want to BE one professionally, but also because I need one-- and so do you. Really, everyone does at some point or another, for one thing or another.

Maybe I care too much about what people think. But honestly, I'm always aware that whatever I put out there -my own writing or someone else's- is for public consumption. It should be clear. It should retain the intent of the writer. And an editor's name is NOT the one on the byline; they're not the ones whose reputations are at stake. As someone who WANTS to be an editor but has just gotten screwed by one, it's a harsh reality.

I only hope it doesn't bite me in the ass.
azurite: (hp - hogwart's crest)
Still writing that "Dumbledore is gay" opinion piece for the Daily Sundial. But despite it being an opinion piece, I'd really like the opinions of other fans, whether you consider yourself a fan of Harry Potter or not.

If you're interested in participating, please comment to this post with your thoughts about what's going on, and PLEASE leave your:
* Real name (you can use your first initial and last name, or first name and last initial, or your full name, whatever you're comfortable with JUST NO ALIASES OR LJ USERNAMES)
* Where you're from (city, state if from the USA, country if from elsewhere)

Aside from the obvious "What do you think about J.K. Rowling revealing that Dumbledore is gay?" think about some of these questions:

* Do you think Rowling had any ulterior motive for revealing that Dumbledore was gay, e.g. for the attention, for the scandal, etc? If she did it to continue to "preach her message of tolerance," do you think she went about it the right way? Is there anything you think that helped or harmed her efforts? What could she have done differently, if anything?

* Do you think it matters whether or not Dumbledore's sexuality was stated in the books or not? Do you think something MUST be stated unequivocally (e.g. in the text, it would say "Dumbledore is gay" or similar?) for it to be considered canon?

* Do you think it makes a difference that we're talking about a fictional character? What about a character in what is widely considered to be a children's fantasy series?

Comments are screened!
azurite: (ffx - yuna summons)
So with a lot of tinkering I've found a way of extracting HQ FMVs from Playstation 2 discs. Alas, I've had to go into Windows on Parallels to convert the disc's *.pss files into an *.m2v video file and a *.wav audio file. From there, I went back into OSX and used Switch to convert the *.wav into MP3, and MPEG Streamclip into an *.avi. However, to get the sound back into the movie, I had to use iMovie, adding the *.avi to the Clips pane and the sound to the Editing area. Then I saved it-- initially as an *.avi again, but for some reason the quality was totally degraded, so I changed it to a *.mov instead. *.movs are great for streaming media, but that's not the purpose of my project-- I didn't want to keep downloading FMVs for my Journalism 371 (Women, Men and Media) media deconstruction project, which is titled "Gendered Language and the Double Standard in Final Fantasy X and X-2."

Since I'll be presenting on a projection screen, I need the quality to be big enough so that people sitting 10+ feet away from the screen can see it clearly. So I want everything to be as HQ as possible-- but it's got to compress down on a DVD, because the computer set-up in the room doesn't have an audio output, and while MacBook Pros have good speakers, they're not THAT good.

Long story short, the process of cutting and editing takes a while, so I don't have as much time to focus on other aspects of the project at the same time, since I can't have two instances of iMovie doing two huge things at once. I know I have 2 GB of memory, but even I'm not that masochistic.

Therefore, I need some help. My copy of FFX was a used copy, and I'm not sure if it came with the manual or not, and I need to know what the "Story" section of the book says. Would anyone who owns the game be so kind as to transcribe that portion for me? Mind you, there's a reason why I'm specifically asking for the manual/official version, rather than what's printed in reviews at online stores, in game FAQs, and so on: I want the OFFICIAL version that was marketed toward the public. Please help!

While I'm on the subject, if you've played either FFX AND/OR FFX-2, would you mind answering a short and easy survey about the game and your impressions of it? THANK YOU!
[Poll #1077157]

If you have any commentary on any of the questions OR on some of the following thoughts, please be sure to comment!
ETA:* If you played both games, but liked one more than the other, why did you like the one that you preferred more? If there were particular elements added or removed to the other game that made you like it less, would having them added or removed to the other game improve it, or no? Why?
* Do you think either of the games are sexist in any way?
* Do you think either one of the games are more targeted toward male gamers, or female gamers?
* Why do you like one game more than the other? (Please indicate if you've played one or both of the games if you answer this question)
* When did you get one/either of the games? Right when it was released, or some time after? How long? Why?
* What did you think of the marketing (commercials, print advertising, reviews) for one/both of the games? What did they emphasize, and what did they neglect to mention (if anything)?
* Do you think the main characters (Yuna, Tidus) of each game fit into any particular stereotypes? Which ones? Why do you think that?
* What makes a video game (in general) appealing to you? Has playing (or not playing) either (or both) FFX and FFX-2 changed your opinion at all?
* Have you played any Final Fantasy games prior to FFX or FFX-2? Do you still play them?
azurite: (cat: what the shit is this!?)

I've wanted to take JOUR 371 "Women, Men, and Media" for a while, and now that I'm in it, I can really say I'm looking at my "usual media" in a different light. Like most people, I'm not the hugest fan of commercials, but occasionally I'll pay attention to one if it's funny (the Doritos Superbowl commercial), the first time for an annoyingly stupid one (the Geico cavemen commercials...), interesting (the Halo 3 commercial) or trendy... you get the idea.

But tonight I'm watching Voyager or CSI or something on Spike and I see a commercial for a new Sega Rally video game. It's got these two girls, the driver who lends her friend in the passenger seat her lipgloss. The passenger girl raves about the color-- meanwhile, you're seeing the car skid, slide, go every which-way... basically, like a rally car on a track.

The tag line? "Drive like a man."


Srsly, WTF?

I'm not sure if I should be offended or not. After all, it's basically saying that guys drive like complete schmucks and get into accidents. But it's also saying that that sort of behavior is admirable, like women should WANT to drive like that (and don't). Then again, maybe it's supposed to be "women are cool-- they can put makeup on in any situation, bumpy or not!" But I doubt that very much.

I'm sorry, I'd much rather be applying makeup and driving slow and steady than be getting highs off testosterone and racing when and where it's unnecessary, spinning, rolling, and crashing like some foolish street racers (FYI, I can admire Initial D as a piece of fiction, but there was recently a bunch of street racers here in the San Fernando Valley that were responsible for the death of a mother and two children. I don't consider *real* street racers in high regard, and think they're a bunch of fucktwits).

azurite: (csi: gsr wall)
WOW. So as if getting to hang out on the set of CSI wasn't cool enough (all right, it would have been cooler if I got to talk with Jorja Fox and George Eads, or see William Petersen), the day before yesterday I got a very nice, vaguely familiar envelope in the mail...

I got invited to the Delegation on Communication in Journalism in AUSTRALIA! AGAIN! This is the second year I've been invited, but because last year I was in Japan, I missed the deadline for turning the application in. The fact that I got invited again despite the drama that happened last semester means I'm still gold to somebody out there, and I don't want to pass this opportunity up.

Of course, there's always a catch. Just like the coolest media internship programs, this delegation costs money. It covers airfare, travel insurance, accommodations, food, and, if I want, an extra few days touring around the most exotic parts of Australia. HOW COOL IS THAT!? *squeeballs*

Anyway, it's $6789 total, which is... a lot, of course. The first deposit of $649 has to be made before December 17th, which is not a bad thing-- I mean, I could easily put that amount on my credit card and pay it back in 2-3 chunks over the next few months. But then in January, $2000 would be due, with the remainder due in February. That's the money I'm not so sure about, because my highest credit limit is on my Macy*s Visa (which I never intend to use outside of Macy*s *AS* a Visa), and I don't see any way of my job (or even my Spring Semester financial aid check, really) covering that.

But there's no way I'm just going to give up hope now. I have to look into things-- scholarships, other financial aid. My dad would probably tell me to ask the Journalism department here at CSUN to fund it so I could write some sort of story, but I doubt that they'd do that. I always doubt that sort of generosity from this department... -_- (Then again, this department seems pretty broke half the time, so...) Anyone have any ideas? It's power fundraising time-- not just for DonorsChoose and AIDS Walk, but Mer, too! :O!!!

(Did I also mention I got invited into another honor society, the Golden Key? DAMN. I feel... smart, like there's another me out there faking everyone out, and I'm basking in this. I don't feel like I deserve it, but on the flip side, I'm really excited, happy, and proud.)

* WDKY IS FOUR YEARS OLD AS OF YESTERDAY (10/9). Someone hit me upside the head with an inspiration-motivation-mallet, please. the last time I let a fanfiction fester for this long was Only 16, and that... didn't turn out so well. It wasn't even as long as WDKY!
* Updated my online portfolio/resume with my latest articles. Also added them to Facebook, including the CSI article. Headline sucks, but I didn't make it up. Read the article if you like, though, and tell me what you think!
* Damn, I feel busy all the time. I'm glad the weekend's coming up, though-- I mean, I'll be busy anyway, with the NSCS garage sale (and the weekend after that, the AIDS Walk-- squee, already raised $275!), but maybe I'll use the sale as a chance to clean my room or something. And maybe get some computer stuff done, too.

...I wanna read more CSI fic. I've read 2 60+ chapter fics (yesterday's was 81 and COUNTING) in the past week or so, and... I'm hooked! More GSR plz!
azurite: (blue flower)
Whoo-hoo! Yesterday was just all-around great (except for one "thing" at work that was minor but made me grumble, but whatever, in the grand scheme of things it doesn't matter at all!). I was pretty excited in all my classes; my first teacher is petite AND energetic like me, and though Investigative Journalism seems a bit dry, it'll be sure to be challenging, as well. I'm looking forward to this semester! I'm also thrilled I got published in the Sundial on the VERY first day back- okay, not page one, per se, but my story WAS mentioned on the front page, though the actual story was on Page 6. And it turns out the editors AREN'T so anal with deadlines, because the EIC told me I could have come in the other day 5 minutes late, no worries-- but I'd run across campus from work, coughing and asthmatic. :P

I worked until 7pm, since those are the new hours M-Th this semester, and it was just non-stop busy! Yet I wasn't exhausted when I got home... Shawn came over after a bit, and we went to see "The Bourne Ultimatum" at the Winnetka theatre. We got dinner at Subway and had no problems getting it in, and the theatre was almost empty, so we had our choice of seats. The movie was really good, too! I liked it so much I reviewed it right away when I got home (using Flickster on Facebook; check it out!) and put the soundtrack (which also kicks ass) on my iTunes alerts. When I get paid again, I might get it, but for now all my money's going toward textbooks, my new computer/iPod, and my impulsive .Mac purchase.

And it's Friday, huzzah-- Grandpa's not going to be working at the pharmacy anymore, which is both unfortunate and good. Unfortunate because I think he'll be irritated with not being able to do things, but good because he can take care of HOME business like bills, cleaning up his massive stock-tracking collection (newspapers, magazine, etc.) He's been pretty forgetful lately, which is the primary reason behind his not working anymore- if he's not careful with his own (or Baba's) medicine, he can't be expected to be careful with other people's. It's sad, but safer and better that way, for everyone all around. I've tried to be as helpful as possible within reason-- I never want to baby them, because they've always been such independent individuals, but I can see the sense in making a list of all their medications so if one of them is sick or something, we can still know what to do. Of course, Grandpa was stubborn when I tried to do that, so Fred and Susy took over, but I don't know how much progress they made. I should probably email Fred and find out.

Music Meme! )

ETA: I neglected to mention (out of forgetfulness, not shame, REALLY!) that today is the one year anniversary since I last updated WDKY. I would like to say I have finished WDKY25 and will be posting it sometime before midnight tonight... but we'll have to see. Right now I'm taking the Word DOC version of Stubborn-Aesthetic's edits and making it into HTML (should have just asked for the HTML version, I'm too nice...), but there's still writing to be done.

Aside from all my usual distractions -family, personal stress, school, work- what I really need is a committed, single beta who is willing not just to concrit the usuals (spelling, grammar, punctuation, flow, diction, etc.) but also the story points, the characterization, and so on. I tend to write from an outline, so there are often parts of said outline left in my un-beta'd WDKY chapters, and I'd LOVE beta-reader input on how to go about answering those questions with prose, or addressing whether or not they're even pertinent to the story.

Frankly, I'm sick of not having a single person or small team of people to always go to. I realize people have lives of their own, so it's hard to always get the same people. That's why I'm looking for a committed few who think they can dedicate a few hours out of their lives every few months to helping me out with all that is WDKY, because trying to do it on my own can and has produced disastrous results. I want more than just one type of casual beta'ing, or JUST the straight "editorial fixes." I want someone to bounce ideas off of, ask questions of me, know the latest chapters and developments, have guesses of their own... everything. Know such a person(s)? Let me know. I'm going to finish this story... well, I would say "if it kills me," but isn't that ironic? The story is "What DOESN'T kill you." RDRR.
azurite: (textually active)
It seems a side effect of my surgery is that I got a cold-- a nasty one, too, that has me sounding like a frog (well, I think-- Steve at work and Shawn both said I sound pretty good) and blowing my nose all the time. Thankfully I have my own personal box of tissues, and no matter how big, I'm going to start bringing my Vaseline with me to work so my nose doesn't get TOO dry and red/flaky.

But I'm taking Zyrtec for the congestion, Vicodin for the horrid headaches from hell (hey, alliteration!), and Keflex for the general antibiotic. I feel like such a pill popper... :P

Also, it seems I couldn't get my new laptop today because my check hasn't cleared YET... but it will in... 47 minutes. Not that the Apple Store's open now, but that either means a) I can get up early... which I may do, just to get used to my new schedule starting this Thursday, and take a shower and head to the mall to get the new laptop so I can actually go to school with it... or b) be a bit more patient and wait until AFTER school so I can bring both the old laptop AND get the new one, so I can hang around the mall while they transfer the data from the old laptop to the new one. I think I should do b), no matter how gung-ho I am.

A few questions of random:
What do you think is more effective at school, a binder with tabs dividing each class, or a notebook for each class? I've always gone with the notebooks as of late, but plenty of classes have paperwork, so notebooks that DON'T function like binders (which is the majority of them, except that new "Flex" note-binder I saw at Rite-Aid last week) are useless. What do you use?

What do you think are the most flattering words to be called in reference to your appearance? (Girls only, please) I got to thinking about this because after the new shopping spree and my haircut, Baba (like grandmother, like father... my dad does this too) said that all the guys would be staring down the front of my (low-cut) shirt. Well, none of the guys at work did do that, but Zack surprisingly called my new haircut "cute." And only because I was so congested and miserable-feeling did I not go "squee!" on the spot. It's always nice to be complimented. But if I had to rate my squee, then here's my Top 5:
5. cute - not as in "fluffy kitten pink cloud" cute, but cute like attractive, but without all the syllables.
4. hot - always nice to feel sexy, yeah? (applies to all derivatives thereof, such as "hottie")
3. sexy - for someone that spent years thinking she'd die a virgin spinster, this one always makes me happy.
2. gorgeous - flattering, but it can sound somewhat plastic depending on the tone.
1. beautiful - the word just makes you feel wonderful inside and out, like nothing else can. And said the right way, it can do a whole lot more!

I got my NSCS gift card today-- it wasn't as large as I hoped (just $25), but it's money I didn't have before. Maybe I'll buy that "Diner Dash: Flo on the Go" game I saw at Game Stop the other day with it. I mean, I'm already going to be spending my own money on:
* new laptop (with no extra bells and whistles though-- the new default packaging for the MBP Core 2 Duo is fine by me)
* new iPod video (what color!? And should I get a dock...? Maybe I should wait till Christmas/Hanukkah)
* iLife and iWorks '08
* Renew my ProCare membership
* Casing for the computer, so I don't have any more "accidents"
That alone might get me close to the $2000 range, and since I only get paid once a month, I want to make sure everything STAYS in great condition

Today I learned that deadline means deadline, not one minute after. Even if my EIC was trying to show he had a sense of humor (and I doubt it, if he's anything like me... which most fellow journalism students seem to be in terms of "sense of humor," a quite scary thought) by threatening to drop my grade by 10% when the semester hasn't even started... well, I'm guessing they ARE anal about deadlines. 12:00 means 12:00, not 12:06. :P Well excuse me for being sick! On the bright side, I do have my other stories mostly done-- I'm waiting to hear back from a representative from the Klotz Student Health Center for my soda health article due on the 23rd, and then I have to contact people at the Topanga Canyon/Westfield mall and an astronomy teacher for the articles due on the 29th.

Just another reason to get to bed now so I can kick this cold that much sooner...
azurite: (unforgotten uranepu)
And everybody say WHEE! Blue Eyes and Apricots, the web's first, official, and ONLY (English) Azureshipping fanlisting now has -count 'em- 400 members! Congratulations to Rea-kun from Malta, who will probably not read this, but who is the kick-buttingest 400th member. I think I should do something special, but what, I do not know. (No, I will not change the layout. Dammit, that layout was hard enough to put together! :P If anything, I can change the colors and the picture but THAT IS IT!)

Spread the word, yo. We've been getting more members than EVER lately, and it makes me so happy! :D :D :D I have some new fanart to put up soon too (from... you guessed it, Rea-kun!) among other things, so at least there's always some new content to check out. I need some more recs and nominations for the Fanfics and Websites sections too, though, so drop me a line, ne?

This is my last week of school before finals. I have four finals, as far as I know:
* Japanese (duh)
* Women writers of Asia (identification... should be easy.)
* Geography (X_X)
* English (X_X;;;)

I finished my term paper for WWA, and I was quite pleased with it-- maybe because the intended length was 8-10 pages, and I ended up with 14. I had to shrink the font and change the font family to get it to fit. :P This is good news though, because I ended up cutting big chunks out, compared to my outline. This means when I actually get around to expanding it and editing it for my scholarship project (which is to write on contemporary writers of Japan, mainly female writers, and in contrast with male writers), I'll have lots of material to work with.

Today I just finished a paper for Geography on symbolic landscapes, and being the urbanite I am, I chose to write about a fourth landscape (this is in addition to D.W. Meinig's list if three from 1979: the New England village, the Middle-American Main street, and Californian Suburbia): the urban landscape. It was limited to 2 pages and a sketch map page, so I hope I did well on it. Prof. Davidson peered over to my paper while I was attempting to draw a lumpy model of San Francisco. :P

I have an idea for my editorial (that is, my second one, because damned if I can come up with another full-length feature piece in less than a day. Bad Mer, bad!) - California is behind the times. Hell, the whole United States is, but California is the worst off, especially here in So. Cal. Now, I haven't heard anyone vocally railing about it on *MY* FL, but that could be due to other reasons... but gas is at an all-time high here in CA. $3.37 is the cheapest you'll find here in Northridge; in San Diego, you were lucky if you saw below $3.54. I saw a $3.61 there, and Baba said she saw a $3.70-something. I realize gas prices as a whole are going up around the country, but CA's always had the higher prices, because we have so many damn people dependent on gas. We can get gas from the South and from Alaska, but somehow, that still doesn't help us. Then you look at countries like Japan, where their public transportation system is RELIABLE and EFFICIENT. I don't know a lot about their environmental policies (they still allow smoking in public restaurants, so...) or fuel usage, but Hummers wouldn't be popular there, and I saw more minivans than I did SUVs while I was there. It's sort of like telling someone they have to cut off their arm to save their life- people just don't want to do it, even if a part of them recognizes it's for the greater good. Are we stupid or just sick?

To do:
* See various departments about transferable credit from Tokiwa. Get them to sign the forms now so that when I come back, they can't double-cross me. I should do that tomorrow, since I need the course catalog.

* Finish up my online resume at :D (Go check it out. Tell me if I'm missing anything, if anything needs editing, etc. The front page only has a short intro right now, but so far, I like it.)

* FIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIICS. I'm already 2000+ words into [ profile] atlantian_magic's Sousuke x Kaname piece, which [ profile] mklutz, you will be pleased (I hope) to note that it's a continuation/sequel to the fic I did for you, "Counting." :) I never intended it to be so long, but... hey, it's just one of those universes. I've also got a good idea for the Ed x Winry piece [ profile] geniusgirl wanted, so I'll get started on that as soon as I'm done with SxK. Oh yeah, and WDKY24. I want it OUT! OUT, I SAY!

* She is the one named Sailor Moon! I was messing with my Thunderbird settings yesterday (remember folks: compact your Inbox often!) and decided to haunt for a bit, and found a HI-larious post on the possibility of yet another live action SM movie. With Jennifer Garner as the main villain. Hahaha, yeah right. But still, funny. And then someone posted a YouTube link to the elusive Episode 67, wherein Chibiusa BEFRIENDS A DINOSAUR. That was a cute episode, even if the animation style degenerated by about 2 seasons. But yeah, Sailormoon. So totally into it again. :D

* AX? Who here is going to AnimeExpo 2006? I mean the one in Anaheim. Because (I think I mentioned this before) someone requested I go, and there *IS* a brand-new Sheraton there. Mom thinks she can get me the StarHot or whatever it's called rate, which is TEH UBER CHEAP! So why not? I'd just pay for the pre-reg and the shuttle there (if Mom wanted to erase the rest of her debt by paying for THAT hotel room too. She paid for all of Fanime, which surprised the crap out of me) and whatever I saw and wanted that I didn't get at Fanime. And hell, I'll even cosplay Anzu. :D I just want to do a lot of things before I go to Japan.

>_> I hope I got a decent grade on my English paper/Kate Chopin's 'The Storm,' even if it was late.


Apr. 24th, 2006 08:07 pm
azurite: Part of the "What Doesn't Kill You" series of fanfic icons (wdky (general))
In about 5 weeks or so, I have to turn in a profile article for Journalism, so I have to consider a subject now. The general idea is finding someone that I find interesting, not just someone that has done something incredible, experienced or survived something amazing, or said something controversial.

Someone would be currently doing or acting a certain way based on their past experiences, to the point where others that are not in that same situation would wonder "Why would that person do that?"

Initially, I was leaning toward my Grandpa, with his WW2 Navy stories, but generally speaking, his past doesn't rule or define him so much these days. So then I thought of someone else -a good friend- and I hope she'll forgive me for being presumptous. [ profile] guardian_kysra, if you have time and are willing to be a bit self-boasting, would you want to help me out?

If that doesn't pan out, I'm open to nominations-- I think people nominating themselves would be a bit arrogant, but I've read so many LJs and am part of so many people's lives, it'd be insanity to try and think of specific events or circumstances that have made my friends and acquaintances such interesting people. So if you know someone (hopefully that I already know as well) that has an interesting life/backstory, and is currently living or acting in an unusual fashion, let me know. I want to consider all my options. :)

In good news, I got a B- on my last feature story, about ACE Mentor, despite the sheer lack of live reporting (that's what lowered my grade) and Dad not really contributing to the story, even if I got the idea from him. I wish I could revise for a better grade, but as I can't, this is good enough for me.

I do have to think of a topic for my editorial, so I was leaning toward something recent, or perhaps controversial (or both... [ profile] fandom_wank, anyone? Maybe the whole "fan-published" fanfiction, a.k.a. unauthorized novels?), since I do have "experience" in that area. Other ideas/opinions (I love a good debate) are welcomed! :D

I also updated my LJ with a completely cornball layout from Persnickety Layouts, using kitties a'la Lisa Frank. Do you remember the bright shininess of Lisa Frank, back in your elementary school days? I couldn't resist. I had to bump the header image down to get the nav bar to show, and now the sidebar is still a bit too high up, but it's still mostly readable. That doesn't mean I like the sheer explosion of cute and pink and such, so I'm still open to layout suggestions, pointers to sites or tutorials, or people interested in having me commission them.

And when I get home, I have to try a thing to get my 2wire router to work despite the VPN client. I also have to download a new version of Spybot S&D, because I'm apparently running an ancient version without an interface. It totally screwed up the computer last night, so I had to do a cold reboot this morning, and who knows what happened after that. :P

Ooh, ooh, and I kind of got an idea for WDKY-- but not for 24 (boo). It's for ch. 27-28 or thereabouts, and it involves (Char A) getting into a real fight with (Char B), quite possibly betraying the trust of (C) and (D), and causing (E) to unexpectedly defend both (B) and (D), and (D), who previously was mad at (E) would start to wonder who to trust or believe, what with all the insanity going on (caused by F and Co.)

Heh. Play the guessing game! (It's actually somewhat obvious, if you've been keeping track of my dastardly hints.)
azurite: (yuna's memory)

Find your Celestial Choir

Go to Wikipedia. In the Search box, type your birth month and day (but not year). List three events that happened on your birthday. List two important birthdays, two interesting deaths, and one intriguing holiday or observance. Post this in your journal.

1471 - In England, the Yorkists under Edward IV defeated the Lancastrians under Warwick at the battle of Barnet; the Earl of Warwick was killed and Edward IV resumed the throne.
I find this interesting because I've come to greatly enjoy this bit of history because of the Rose Chronicles fanfic that I've been languishing on.

1828 - Noah Webster copyrights the first edition of his dictionary.
And thank GOODNESS for that!

1915 - The Turks invaded Armenia.
Yes, it happened.

1336 - Emperor Go-Kogon of Japan (d. 1374)
1977 - Sarah Michelle Gellar, American actress

1995 - Burl Ives, American singer and actor (b. 1909)
2001 - Hiroshi Teshigahara, Japanese director (b. 1927)

Black Day - informal celebration day for single people in South Korea

I'm back in black (read: I have money)! Thank goodness for generous grandparents and upcoming birthdays. I might even get to go to the first West Valley Witches Meetup tonight at the Denny's in Woodland Hills, but because Zack would have to go out of his way to take me there, he's being particularly devilish in coming up with a "fee." I wish my 'feminine wiles' (a pout, a certain stance, whatever) worked on him... or maybe not. That'd be bad.

I'm excited about Sunday~! I finished packing already, but I have to do a lot of homework, since I'm going to be gone the whole time. Unless I manage to do phone or email interviews, I don't know how I'm going to get my Feature #2 done. I hate stupid Prof. Brown. If I'd had this idea and resources a while ago, I might have had a head start on it, but there's nothing more than I hate than a teacher that doesn't understand the concept of a SPRING BREAK. We're not supposed to DO anything having ANYTHING to do with school! ;_; I'm going to try and finish my Japanese tonight. There's no Geography (thank god), but my biggest worry is, of course, for Journalism. There might also be a paper for English, so there's that to worry about, and I have to get my research paper started for WWA.

I'll most likely be focusing on Naoko Takeuchi as a contemporary female manga-ka, contrasting her with Kazuki Takahashi for the male. I'll write for Banana Yoshimoto as the female writer, and likely Novala Takemoto (author of Kamikaze Girls) for the male. I'm most definitely open to more suggestions for the expansion of the research paper -my "book" which I hope to write with Prof. Hirota as part of my Presidential Scholarship award stipulation. :D

Oh, and as a note to all the females out there - when some strange guy looking suspiciously like Napolean Dynamite asks you to sign a petition to END Women's Suffrage, JUST SAY NO. Otherwise you are a Dumb Female and do not deserve to have a Vagina. Go away, shoo, shoo.

Whee, Hawaii! Whee, birthday! Beaches and Mai Tais... and I hope it doesn't rain!
azurite: (manga venus fade)
I was starting to get worried about Takase-sensei never calling on me in class. I was wondering what I was doing wrong, or what she really thought of me. I recall now the fact that she seemed pretty reluctant to even give me another recommendation letter earlier in the semester, even though I impressed on her how important it was to me... if I get the NSEP scholarship, it will pretty much pay for my entire study abroad trip to Japan (if I get in).

Well, so the truth finally came out today... she asked me to stay a bit after class, and she wanted to know what my study methods were. I clammed up immediately. I thought I couldn't possibly tell her that I always do the homework the day that it's due, and I rarely have dialogues memorized until a few hours before we perform. I only try to do the listening comprehension days before class, and last week proved that I didn't even need to do that, because I managed to finish it in under an hour at the library.

She said she noticed how my binder is all highlighted and filled with notes, and I take notes. She said that I always have the answer when she asks questions, and I always get my dialogues and response drills correct. I was standing there in shock -flattered, but unsure of where this was going. I was under the impression that she'd found me out about my procrastinating-but-somehow-still-performing ways. I'd even been having troubles keeping up; 102 is significantly harder than 101, but I'm slowly remembering things from my high school Japanese days. I'm hoping that my translations of Gospel of Truth will help me get even better.

What it boiled down to was that she wants to encourage everyone else to study like me (uh-oh), and even though I "neglected" to mention the last-minute aspect that strangely works for me, she liked how I highlighted portions, wrote the answers down for the response drills, regardless of how many possibilities there are, and how I find the pattern in each of our drills. I also read the grammar patterns, in case I get confused during a situational drill or listening comprehension set, and I romanize all the vocabulary so I'm always sure of how to pronounce something and what it means. I've stopped trying to romanize everything in the listening and situational drills, or the questions in the reading and writing, but I'm always trying to speed up my reading of the kana.

And she wants me to stop participating so eagerly in class. Specifically, she said she wants me (and herself, of course) to be more "patient" with everyone else. She notices that if I volunteer the answers too readily, other people don't seem motivated to answer-- even when she singles people out, or asks the entire class to answer something loudly. She started asking everyone to write their answers for practice and dialogues, and to write their partner's name as well, so she knows everyone worked together, talked, rehearsed, etc.

I didn't even think I *was* participating eagerly -I have my troubles too, even if much of this is familiar to me. But we are starting on informal speech and more complex patterns than I ever learned in high school Japanese, especially considering I chickened out in my junior year of HS and essentially bombed in all my classes. I won't let that happen here, but if Takase-sensei's 'speech' is any indication, it won't happen.

I'm halfway between disappointed and pleased-- I'm glad she thinks I'm such a good student that's doing so well, and willing to help others, but I'm sad that I won't get called on, and will in fact be encouraged NOT to volunteer info. I don't think I was ever doing it excessively anyway, or interupting people when it was their turn, or helping them when someone didn't want me to. If I had been, I wouldn't have thought I was being singled out. My class isn't a "raise your hand to speak" class anyway; she just calls on people by name, and they have to be ready to answer. I was getting upset because she never seemed to call on me, or even look in my direction.

So... that's it.

And today we got our papers/stories back in Journalism. Today was a miracle day in that I felt like I got little sleep, but I'm still awake, not feeling all that tired, and I managed to get EVERYTHING done before it was due. I was a little late to Geography, but considering we were watching "Cadillac Desert" (on William Mulholland and the LA River) rather than getting lectured, it wasn't a horrible deal. I always seem to be late on "shower day." I insist on eating a good breakfast when it's manageable (manageable is 10 minutes or more before I have to leave), so often other things make me late.

In any case, I wasn't expecting a lot out of my article, because I can honestly say I could have tried harder. Once-a-week classes ask for procrastination, because there's not enough regular motivation to get things done. On the flip side, everything has a heavier weight, because you have "all this time" to get things done. Except, I'm a full-time student with 4 other classes and work. It was also a difficult assignment, with a difficult teacher, at the beginning of the semester-- in what was a very difficult time for me, worrying about Japan applications, scholarships, and everything else.

It's slowed down a bit, and it's true that our upcoming personal essay might be easier ('might' is the keyword), but... a C+?

Hm. I guess it's okay. I don't want to be one of those students who whines about something that's average or acceptable. I wouldn't have expected an A. A B- might have been nice, but you can't win them all. I genuinely DID B.S. a lot of the story; I researched where I should have reported, and I'm not proud of the fact. But I don't want to get USED to being okay with C+s, though.
azurite: (mokuba's 1024)
Happy Birthday DQBunny!

Super-Mod. Super-Evil.

It's raining crazy here, and I hate it. Born and raised in NorCal, but I still don't like the rain. Yet, I still like winter more than summer (likely because I hate getting sunburned more than I hate getting wet, even if it hasn't happened in a while... or more obviously, summer is when my sister died, and I hate being reminded), but right now, isn't it Spring? Geez, and we had that heatwave not all that long ago...

So the other day the rec room toilet flooded over mysteriously (as in, no one flushed it or anything), and I didn't figure this out till I came home from somewhere and, on my way to the restroom, I noticed the carpet was awfully wet and spongy. Well, I told Grandpa, since he's the expert plunger-man (I still can't figure out how to work one. And other women think "tires and testicles" give them problems!), but nothing worked. We already had 2 inches of water on the floor. So we had to call a plumber. He went into the main line and got out a clog or somesuch (the upstairs toilets were forcing pressure on the downstairs ones, apparently), but the carpet people never got back to us. So we were stuck putting baking soda on the smelly wet spots, and keeping the windows open and the fan on.

It's still not dry, and Baba and Grandpa have decided to replace the carpet. Better than dealing with mildew in my preferred hang-out room, I suppose. So we'll be saying goodbye to our off-white carpet, and saying hello to something a lot more water-resistant and stain-proof, if that's possible. I wonder what color we'll get?

All the stress today sort of fizzled out 3/4 of the way through my afternoon/evening shift at the walk-in center; I got a reply back from the Snowflake Embryo Adoption Agency, and I can call them back at any time for a more detailed interview (they sent me a press pack). I used Lexis-Nexis for some article digging, and I found out that the couple on 60 Minutes last week or so have actually been in the media for a while, and were even on HGTV! Curiouser and curiouser! Class was important -we learned the structure he wants us to use for our stories- but I was so sleepy! Half the class didn't even show up because of the rain (this is commonplace in SoCal. A "drizzle" equates to a "raging storm" in these parts). I managed to catch the most important parts, and I even managed my "first act" (the first chunk of the story), which needs just a bit more information to be revised. I'm surprised at how easily it came to me! I need to get a new anecdote though, because I can't use a "fake" secondhand one compiled from other articles and interviews!

Anyway, the one  of my day (aside from getting soaking wet, but that's trivial) was when a guy I was helping in the walk-in center pointed to the rather-inflamed zit on my chin and says "What's that, some sort of battle scar?" I think I was in shock for a minute before I tried to laugh it off and say "No, it's just girl problems." The guy persists, and says, "What, you got into a fight?" I wanted to smack him. Not only was he an idiot for putting the wrong MAC address for his wireless card into the system (he put his Bluetooth address, the ninny), but now he's talking to me about my face-- about an obvious zit as if it were some sort of scar, Kenshin-style? *rolls eyes* I think not! I told him "No, it's just a zit," and I promptly turned red and turned away. Jackass! Hence the sulfur-- I decided if it's that damn noticeable, I better up my Proactiv treatment, so I used the sulfur mask tonight. I might even do some dermabrasion before I go to bed. All the stress caused it, I tell you!

I'm going to try and relax more -meditate more, if I can remember. Right now I'm munching on macaroni and sipping a Watermelon Bacardi Silver, so I hope I'll go to bed relaxed. :)

The highlight of my day was when Scott responded to my doleful text message ("Sweet little wet kitty in need of cuddling!") by calling after my Japanese test (I think I did pretty well) and saying he needs to be in LA the weekend of the 10th (Peace Corps stuff), so can he come over? ^_^ Of course! Grandpa was baffled that I even asked permission! :D So I'm glad I'll be seeing him again so soon, and also before we both go on our Spring Breaks. Hopefully he can also come to Passover the weekend after we both get back.

I've finished my work for Women Writers of Asia tomorrow, though I have been putting off my reading for English. Much of what Walt Whitman wrote is just "too heavy" for me to handle! ;_; I keep getting gripped by this fear that I might actually fail a class this year -if not feature writing (JOUR 310), then Major American Writers (ENGL 275). If I fail just one, it'll screwball my plans for a summer 2008 graduation, and I'm pretty dead-set on being OUT of here by then. I don't know where I'll go or what I'll do afterward; much of it hinges on this coming year (Japan or no?) and my senior year (where I get my internship). But I don't want to be held back on account of one class and my fears/procrastinating habits/lack of understanding!

I have until the 15th to send off my 2nd Waseda application; I hope that Hirota-sensei will remember my recommendation tomorrow, and that Prof. Davidson will give me his on Wednesday like he said. I just have to fine-tune my essay (no copy-pasting) and fill out the 2nd (all in Japanese!) application. X_X I also have to get my photo copied at least four more times. -_-; Oh, and somewhere, somehow this week, I have to go back to Kaiser to have them say what I already know -I don't have TB! :P

Other than that, I really need to get on the bandwagon for communities (not a single entry for [ profile] ygo_offtopicon!? *wails*), my icons, and revising my Ranma fics. Seriously, I was guilty of stuff that I rant about! Fangirl Japanese among the least of my crimes. Reading Neon-Ronin's "The Truth and the Tempest" has reminded me of how much I need to improve, even in the fics department. There is no cutoff! The good can go bad, the best can be forgotten, and you can ALWAYS revise!

So even though I don't plan on staying up late tonight working on any of that, it's on my to-do list. :)

And now I need to find me some Ranma icons. :D I think I need icons for all of my fandoms. I've got Sailormoon, xxxHolic, Star Ocean EX, Hana Yori Dango, Gundam Wing (not really a fandom of mine, but that damn icon always makes me laugh), Final Fantasy X/X-2, Harry Potter, Yu-Gi-Oh, Lois & Clark, and even Escaflowne represented here, but no Full Metal Panic, Ranma, Inuyasha, Full Moon o Sagashite, Fushigi Yuugi, Ayashi no Ceres, etc... so point me at 'em! And don't I still owe someone a mood set? I swear I'll get on that when I have a free second. :P
azurite: (deadlines whoosh)
So for Prof. Brown's 310 class (Feature Writing, aka Writing, Reporting, and Ethics III), I have to write a news-feature story of approximately 1500 words. He shot down many of my original ideas, because they didn't offer enough "happening events" or "change." I can understand that. I don't know how I stumbled upon it, but I ended up with the idea for an embryo adoption story-- why are more people choosing to adopt embryos, or give up embryos for adoption, rather than go the "traditional" way and:
(a) adopt already-born kids
(b) use in vitro-fertilization (IVF) to have their own kids
(c) donate the embryos for stem-cell research, especially considering the eggs would be destroyed otherwise, either by the clinic or over long-term cryo-storage

In CA, this can be a controversial topic, since our state DOES support stem-cell research, and many of the research facilities are out here. But then there are organizations like Snowflake Adoption Agency, which is a sub-group of the Nightlight Christian Agency. And there are IVF clinics that give prospective parents the option to adopt another couple's frozen eggs, or give IVF parents the opportunity to donate their unused embryos. Some of those prospective parents DO opt for that route, and then they have what are called "Snowflake Babies."

Anyway, we have to have at least ONE interview done by Monday. I've already contacted 3 biology/ethics professors at CSUN; 2 aren't available because 1 doesn't work for CSUN anymore, and 1 doesn't think he knows enough about embryo adoption. I've contacted 3 clinics; 1 bounced back the email, and the other 2 didn't respond (unless the emails went into my bulk folder, but I haven't seen anything in my bulk folders).

I've got phone numbers for all of them, plus for some Kaiser media representatives in SoCal. Understand that I can't really do too many phone calls, as long-distance is something I worry about-- I have horrible cell phone reception despite a Nationwide plan with Sprint, and I can't rack up too many minutes on my grandparent's phone, as they're already paying for DSL.

In-person is impossible. I have a hard enough time going to the hospital when I need to, let alone for something that's not a medical emergency (i.e. journalism).

My professor said I need to get ahold of an expert source or two, an official from the Snowflake Agency (emailed earlier today), perhaps 2 parents that either donated their embryos or adopted embryos, and at least one person from an IVF clinic.

Now, I talked to Mamono, fellow journalist, and she's essentially told me I need to get over myself and phone these people. ;_; And she's right, of course. I hate talking to people on the phone, and I'm terrified I won't know what to say. I don't want to sound like a recording, but I think I need some guidelines on what to say, what to ask, who to ask FOR! Help!


Oct. 14th, 2005 03:57 pm
azurite: (All Spice Seto)
zOMG I got Final Fantasy X-2 International + Last Mission today... and given that you shouldn't start Last Mission without a completed FFX-2 save (and it can't be US, it has to be either Japanese or Japanese INT.), I started a new Japanese FFX-2 International file. Dialogue and such is in English, but MAN is it hard trying to do anything else! So far, I can read "potion", "dressphere", and "result plate", and that's about it. I don't even know what Ether is called! I did manage to get the Festival-goer (Omatsuri-something-or-other) dressphere though, which makes battles loads easier; Yuna just blows everything up with fireworks.

In order to get the Psychiccer dressphere, I have to battle in Shinra's new Battle Cup system, using fiends captured or sampled by the Creature Create system... all new to I+LM. I know you can "capture" really amazing character (Tidus, Auron, etc.) and from screenshots I've seen, you can swap them INTO your party, and their stats can be amazing! >_> I still don't understand how you can Break HP limit and Break Damage Limit outside of battle though... I mean, don't you need some special grid for that? (The End?)

I'm definitely going to be consulting a lot of guides for this. I still want to get 100% complete on the US game though, so I'm still playing that.

I also got Persona 2: Eternal Punishment today... whee, and it's everything I remembered and more! I actually opened my old save and I had NO frackin' clue what I was doing or where I was. Something about a Secret Casino. Methinks I'll probably start a new file for that one too, just to refresh my memory. I do remember this, though: Katsuya x Maya forever! :P

More good news: I am not going to spend all my days parked in front of this computer or the PS2. Matter of fact, I plan on taking a quick nap and then cleaning my room. After anime club, more sleep, then lather, rinse, repeat-- clean again! I have tons to do and a deadline to get it all done by.

Speaking of deadlines and other journalism-y stuff, I was on my way up to the 4th floor of the library to go to my locker, and these two guys were talking behind me on the escalator. One said "I bet she's a journalism major," but I didn't know who they were talking about. Then they actually said "Hey" to me, and asked if I was a journalism major. So I said yes, and asked them how the guy who asked knew, and he just smiled this weird way and said he guessed.

*blink* I didn't recognize either guy, but maybe one of them was in my class? I dunno. The two of them were laughing about it after I got off the escalator. o_O

Oooh, and more on the FFX-2 note... so we finally got our assignment in Visual Communications the other day, to design this magazine cover, right? We'll have to explain why we chose the things/style we did... and I got SO inspired just as Prof. Blumenkrantz was talking about it! *grin grin* I don't want to spoil my idea lest someone somehow steal it, but it IS related to FFX-2, and it WILL be good! Bwahaha!

My hand has actually been kind of hurting lately... not really serious ow! pain, but kind of that numb, hard feeling (if that makes any sense). I'm getting my stitches out on the 18th, thankfully, and Grandpa assures me that a) it won't hurt and b) my hand functions WILL return to normal.

I also went back to Red Robin and talked to Francis, the GM. He said that they have to train people to become trainers to train NEW people (like me), so I should come back in 2-3 weeks after they've likely sent people to the trainer's conference and tested them and all. I guess that's good... I can wait. Besides, Francis told me that I'm a very energetic, memorable person and that I'd be a great addition to the team. I'm hoping he remembers that and feels the same way in 2-3 weeks.

Also, I think I've made up my mind as to what I want to be for Halloween. More of a cosplay than a Halloween costume, actually... how about Téa, ala [ profile] atlantian_magic's "Once Upon A Halloween" fic. All I need is a handsome prince, a cute puppy, and Tinkerbell along for the ride. Hey, -[ profile] cutieme4u, what's up for Halloween, anyhow?
azurite: (Default)
My body picked a lousy time to catch cold and have my period. I've been feeling like I'm walking on another planet all day long-- gravity must be sucking me into the center of the Earth. If that meant a free ride to Japan without worrying about molten magma, I'd be all for it, but somehow I don't think that's going to happen.

I've been so sleepy, I've actually done what I thought was unthinkable-- I not only fell asleep in mythology class (I missed the entire lecture about how Sigmund Freud connects to the Electra complex) but I went to the library afeter class and conked out on the 4th floor near my locker. It was only an hour nap, and I didn't really feel all that better afterward. But I was okay after visual communications; I went and grabbed some lunch with my requisite iced tea, and now all is well. I still feel a bit tingly and weird and out of it, but at least I'm not passing out and drooling all over my keyboard.

ATTENTION SAN FRANCISCO-ITES! Yeah, I'm talking to YOU, Stephanie, Eva, Lindsay, and everyone else whose names I can't remember or whose user SNs aren't accessible to me now! Go sign up for the schools feature here on LJ! It's so quick and easy, you just search for all the schools you've ever gone to/are attending, and it automatically sorts you by username. You can input the years you attended and all that fun stuff, and even see other LJ users associated with your schools. I've already added mine: CSUN, Lafayette (EVA!!!!!), Presidio (EVERYONE!!!) and Wash House (zOMGcleanlaundry!) so you hop to it! Besides, I wanna know who else I know here on LJ that went to any of my schools... *peers*

Also, I wanted to randomly show up in San Francisco from 10/7-10/9, since Scott's going to be there anyway for his NOVA or GEOS interview... not that he'd stay with me or even have time to spend with me, mind you, but if he's going, I could use it as an excuse to go to. I know that doesn't make sense, just trust me on this one. But of course, since it's only 2 wks. before that departure time, tickets are expensive! $214 min. on SWA, and $260 on JetBlue (which, for some stupid reason, only flies from Long Beach to Oakland, and not Burbank to Oakland, even though Oakland is its Northern California major way-station. Durrrr, DUMB!). Hm... wish I could go...

I'm having trouble finding a speech to go to for Story #2 for WRPII. The ones at CalTech already ended; besides, Pasadena's too inaccessible on the weekends. There are supposed to be some Executive Speakers coming here, but I'm not sure if they've already made their speeches in the past week (when they started) or not, and even if they didn't, would I be allowed/able to go? The speech I'm interested in going to is by CBS Studio Center president Michael Klausman, but he's speaking primarily to Cinema, Television and Arts students-- which is in my college, but it's not my department. There's also a speaker from NASA's Mars rover program this Friday at 7:30pm, but that would mean missing Anime Club and possibly my 2nd cousin Joey's (oops, call him JOE now, he is 20!) birthday party-- if he wants to have one. Grr! And the story is due Oct. 5th! What do I do?!

...Hmm, there was a thing downstairs about the opening of the Guitar Research Archives here at the Oviatt, but I don't think that's the kind of speech I'm looking for. Besides, it's rather impromptu and more about performances than information, so I think I'll pass (and spend another hour here on the comp! :P)

Someone on the eFiction board helped me look at a problem Dragonfayth was having on its new modded Authors page; I've been tinkering with some of the mods offered there, and one of the people is named 'Lazuli.' o_O No relation to OUR Laz, right, [ profile] smrff!? o_O Anyway, what the new mod does (or is supposed to do) is differentiate between Authors (people who have submitted stories) and Members (people who sign up to read fics and recommend fics, not write them).

I'm sure there are all sorts of other mods that I would like to implement; as they're a lot more feasible for eFiction than InkTank, I'd like people to check out the list over at, under Mod Releases. There are about 3 pages of mods, 2 or so individual mods of which I've implemented already. The full release list (not sure whether this includes all mods and requests, or just completed/tested mods) is located here:

Go check it out, mmk?

So apparently I can only study driver's ed at school (which I like doing, because I don't have the distraction of my MP3s, fanfiction, chatting, the television, my grandparents, food, or my bed) on the WHITE GST computers here in the Collaboratory. o_O I wonder why? Anyway, I'm almost done with Lesson 3 of... er, I think it's 10 or 11. Sure, that's not a whole lot, but I think I'm learning. I've done well on all my quizzes so far, and all the interactive lessons. Still, how do I memorize this stuff? Do I take notes? Print the pages out? ;_; Eeek! There seem to be many laws regarding feet estimates: signal 100 feet before turning, never enter a bike lane more than 200 feet from the turning corner or driveway, and stop at least 15 feet in front of a railroad crossing. How do you estimate that distance, anyway?

Also, if I'm still awake and somewhat coherent tonight, I have a short list of things to do:
(1) Reformat the damn laptop... again. Maybe the clean install will work better this time with more memory?
(2) Add a scene or two to WDKY19. I wanted to end it on a somewhat happy/teasing note, as I have been alternating between zOMG cliffhangers and "aww." moments lately. But I'm also neglecting other characters and relationships in the process, along with some teasers I need to work in, so I think the addition of this one scene I've been thinking about will do the fic good. I might even get doubly inspired.

I'm hoping that if all goes well and I can make it to the CTVA Exec. Speaker, then on Friday I can go to anime club as usual and FINALLY get a DVD from Phil of Adam & Joe Go Tokyo. Various specific Google and BitTorrent searches have turned up bupkis in the way of actual episodes, so it really *is* as rare as Phil said. A right shame, but he better keep his promise this time around and get me the episodes. In the meantime, I'm downloading episodes 3-9 of Full Metal Panic: The Second Raid, Chibi and I are arranging an exchange of Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon and Trick, and I need to see Last Order and probably read "The Complete Story of FFVII" or something like that on GameFAQs. Unless one of you l33t gamer guys (*stares at [ profile] staplerx, [ profile] zigx, [ profile] psyjoe_dilandau etc. etc.*) wants to inform me... MMM?

Only 15 minutes till I have to leave for class, so I might as well update this and catch up on my reading for class. The good thing about WRPII is we don't have any pop quizzes or tests based on the reading-- whether or not you read shows in how fast you can get in-class exercises done and in the stories you turn in. So far, so good. I'm glad I made the decision to stay in Salido's class, even if the rest of my body is protesting today. Oy!
azurite: (Anzu's Future)
So I'm a dweeb. I joined [ profile] 4husorting and now I'm letting people dissect my character and determine if I'm a Ravendor, a Slytherpuff, or some other bizarre combination thereof of the houses. So far, people seem to think I'm a Gryffinpuff! Sad thing is, I thought each of the 6 house combinations would have one of the four main houses in the "first" position:

But the houses are as follows:
Ravendor (Ravenclaw + Gryffindor)
Gryffinpuff (Gryffindor + Hufflepuff)
Ravenpuff (Ravenclaw + Hufflepuff)
Slytherclaw (Slytherin + Ravenclaw)
Slytherpuff (Slytherin + Hufflepuff)
Slytheriffin (Slytherin + Gryffindor)

So as you can see, Ravenclaw has 2 houses (which is okay), Slytherin has 3 (hey!) Gryffindor has one (one shrot), and Hufflepuff has NONE! Not that I don't like the names or anything, but...

Slytheriffin should be changed to Gryfferin or something. And if you wanted to be fair, each house would get 1 name, and two major houses (for the sake of the HP verse, we'll say Gryffindor and Slytherin) would have an additional 2:
* Ravenpuff (Ravenclaw main - Ravenclaw + Hufflepuff)
* Gryffinpuff (Gryffindor main - Gryffindor + Hufflepuff)
* Slytherclaw (Slytherin main - Slytherin + Ravenclaw)
* Hufflerin (Hufflepuff main - Hufflepuff + Slytherin, though admittedly Slytherpuff sounds cooler)
* Slytheriffin (Slytherin main - Slytherin + Gryffindor)
* Gryffinclaw (Gryffindor main - Gryffindor + Ravenclaw)


Anyway, so I manged to transfer almost ALL of my files to my laptop -teh yay! But alas, I still can't get LimeWire or iTunes to work, and I don't know why! I'm praying for the Device & Drivers CD, and maybe I can afford to splurge on a 1 GB Memory Card... the question is $159 from Dell Direct, or possibly more expensive for a name brand? didn't even carry cards for my laptop!

Happy Talk Like A Pirate Day! ARGH!

It be Joe's birthday! Happy birthday, matey! (I would do the giant text rainbow color thing, but I'm at school, so I don't have the prog. that does that.)

Also, I was thinking (completely randomly) to make some HBP banners that say (all sophisticated-like) "JKR sunk my 'ship. But I'm still writing. That's the power of my OTP/OT3/whatever." Anyone want?

And finally, because I love having an excuse OTHER than fanfiction to annoy [ profile] rhapsody_dragon I propose this question to her and all of you on my FL, because I love getting opinions and arguing/debating, or just learning about fresh perspectives...

What do you think of shock advertising? By shock advertising, I mean things like the United Colors of Benetton using the picture of a man dying of AIDS on his deathbed, and sticking their logo in the corner. I mean the same company using the nude torso of a male model and stamping his forearm with a Holocaust-like tattoo reading "HIV positive." What do ads like these do to you, make you think about the company advertising, the magazine/newspaper they appear in, the photographer, or the models/people pictured? Why? Is anyone justified using shock advertising, and if so, for what reasons? (For example, does donating to a charity for AIDS relief justify using the image described above for an ad for clothing?)

See the first image here:

Time to go to mythology class (Mr. Adams calls it My-thologee)!
azurite: (ctrl-z!)
Ugh, I hate all the political-based responses to the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. The representative for the White House keeps accusing this one MSNBC/Newsweek reporter that he was finger pointing and playing the blame game (his exact words, repeated to infinity). The guy was only asking a yes-or-no question. -_-; Then again, I'm biased because I'm a journalist-in-training, I guess. Mamono, what are your thoughts on recent coverage?

Well, if it seems/feels like (on my end, anyway) that I've been dead, it's because I've been trying to get my new Dell Inspiron 6000 to work... to no avail. I upgraded to Win XP Pro the night I got the laptop, but apparently something went wrong in the install, and since I didn't buy the Pro from Dell, I have to reformat and reinstall the Home OS, and then bug Microsoft for help regarding the XP Pro upgrade. I won't have to reinstall much:
* Firefox (bookmarks, extensions, themes)
* Thunderbird (old email -still on this comp- and account settings)
* LimeWire
* iTunes 5
* Winamp

Also, no one from [ profile] betasquad has said yay or nay to my idea of having a website/forum (something I originally proposed to [ profile] nekokilala), which kind of bums me out. I have tons of [ profile] 30kisses claims to catch up on, and I'm wondering if there might be an easier way of letting [ profile] svelterose update when I'm not available.

I want to post WDKY18 --tonight, if possible, now that it's pretty smoothed out. I'm spending so much time (or what FEELS like a lot of time) at school, studying, at work (ugh, especially tomorrow!) and trying to clean up my room (I got most of the closest sorted out; now I have to put my desk papers and such together). The comp is running strangely slow right now (great, just what I need), so I'm going to finish this entry, install the latest Java in the hopes that it'll fix my future downloads, and restart. More later, perhaps.
azurite: (stophoest - Throw rocks at boys)
After work today, I got my last 2 textbooks-- my Creative Writing book and my Syllabus (which isn't really a syllabus at all, it's a workbook of weird pages and random stories). I'm kind of worried that the teacher seems so obsessed with himself, using his own works as examples, but then again, maybe he's proud in a good way. If any of you guys who write fanfiction taught a Creative Writing class, would you ever use your own writing as an example? Why or why not?

My Mythology teacher scared me at first-- kind of chubby with a double-chin, very pale with light eyes and pink lips-- he looked like a corpse with crooked teeth. But once he got talking, he was very funny and the class looks like it'll be interesting. Many class activities will be conducted online, which I'm grateful for.

Back to Japanese... Scott was called on today, and he either wasn't paying attention or he seriously needed the textbook (which I picked up at the bookstore before class; QuickCopies took forever to assemble the binder of notes, but I got it in less than 10 minutes). He didn't know what to say... I tried to help him out, but I think I might have made things worse. He didn't seem upset at me or anything, now that I think about it, but like I said earlier, he rushed off to Aikido, and he never saw or said anything to me after we parted ways. :P He owes me lunch tomorrow.

Wednesday is what I'm really looking forward to, though, because aside from Japanese and Mythology, I'll also have my 2 Journalism classes, my WRPII course (with Salido again!) at night. I wonder how I'll get home? I do have to learn to drive though, and I'd like to have learned by December. Time to research some driving schools... (I don't even know what course to take)

I'm glad people are submitting alternative lists at [ profile] 30kisses. I really have to finish my SxA pairing for that, so I can either pick a new pairing (a few of the other pairings I write for were taken, but the authors have PROBABLY given up... *sigh*) or focus on my 100 icons. I've gotten a few more done lately, but I want to do all "batch posts" where I have at least 5 icons at a time, so it might be a while before I post at [ profile] iconfiend100 again.

*yawn* I'm so tired! It's so hot! I need to learn sign language, and I have to stop blushing when a Japanese person orders at Jamba Juice!
azurite: (anzu's problems)
Some days just go your way... you're on a roll you can't explain... and then it all goes down the drain. -Meredith Brooks "Some days"

Boy, I know the feeling. These past two months, my astro house has been in shambles, my real house is on a shaky (figurative) foundation, and school... sucks.

I'm in a pessimistic mood, but as the time when I lost my wallet and got it back (intact!) again, part of my faith in myself and humanity is restored.

I've been miserable since yesterday when I broke out to one of my friends that I was hating everything around me, including and most especially school, and that I was terrified of going back to the AP class I'd cut before because I never understood anything- even when I did the reading and such. He promised me he'd show up today to help me out... and he didn't. Again, with the trust issue.

Today was okay, 'cept yesterday left me a bit shaken, so when I woke up I was in quiet-grump mode. My mom was freaked that I'd left the house without a word to her.

Then, of the worst things to happen, the newspaper I'd been slaving over with a few of my friends (the one for the school) just... *poofed*

My friend luckily found a TMP file that restored the old (and I mean OLD) hard copy, but all the recent work-- the horoscopes, entertainment, and feature articles were lost. I was moping, crying... (yes, even though I promised myself in 7th grade I would never cry in public again) generally being very upset... until I remembered that I saved the article that I'd rewritten on the web! I'm happier than I should be, I suppose.
Tomorrow is the question-- I'll be meeting up at DH... and I kinda don't want to see "that guy" again... you know, the one that might have a crush on me, and yet is my linkup between MY crush and me... *sigh* Why is life so damn complicated? I think I'll snag some cash from mom (after I sweet her up by doing all the dishes in one sitting) and get myself a crepe... and maybe the latest Peach Girl manga. ^^ I'm trying to smile, really I am...
azurite: (yuna berserker)
Perhaps a year from now this won't be true, but as I slept (on the couch) last night, I had an inspiration. I was reading the book "Death by a Cheeseburger: High school journalism in the 1990s and beyond," whose title came from an article of fiction describing how someone died by a cafeteria cheeseburger. I was reading the statistics, trying to imagine how I could improve the staff I'm on now. My mom told me earlier today that my sister had been on the beginning journalism staff in 1991 and 1992, and I was amazed. I wish she was still around so I could talk to her about how it was back then.

So now, I'm looking at how some states require journalism teachers to have certification-- California doesn't. It's sad really, because California is so wide and diverse. The teacher we have is a good teacher, but horrible with teaching journalism. He doesn't inspire, edit, or anything, I don't know what the word is, but he doesn't motivate. So I've decided that I want to get a Master Journalism Educator degree, and return to my high school after college to teach Journalism there.

Good method of reforming from the inside out, ne? That's my goal, my motivation from now on. I want to be the kind of teacher kids look forward to seeing every day, the kind that motivates, inspires, and teaches.
Since the passing of the teacher that I didn't know, and the memorial ceremony (see "Teachers Bash Fight" entry) I wanted to be one of those people "changing the world, one kid at a time." Of course, I would be horrible in social services, so what better than to deal with journalism (my favorite subject) with high-schoolers (and right after college, assuming I stick to this goal and get a MJE degree, I would get along best with them, being only 8 or so years older than senior students)!? It's a great idea, and I'm really going to push for it.

That inspiration I had lost so long ago I have again. ^^ And I'm happier than I've ever been.

January 2016

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