Out of all that, I am very happy with the 5 mythics, especially Lotus Cobra, and with the amazing amount of quality dual land in the set. Four different rare fetchlands and two each of the uncommon "gain a life, EBT" dual lands make me a very happy camper. I find myself liking a lot of the white and red cards in this set a lot, too. The black, with vampires, doesn't excite me so much, although the two uncommon Gatekeeper of Malakir I got are nice.
Note: This is not mine. I just thought it was, well, very nifty. It comes from a blog, which you can find here.
Horton Hears an Evangelical
In a place known as Whoville the folks got distraught
When Horton the elephant said what he thought.
“The oddest of oddities isn’t as odd
As people believing that there is a god.”
The Who Jews and Muslims and Hindus and Buddhists
The Who Vegetarians, Wiccans, and Nudists,
The Who Presbyterians, Baptists, New Agers:
All spread the sad news on their cell phones and pagers.
A Who Evangelical fell to his knees
And he said, “Oh no, Horton! I beg of you, please!
We always have liked you. We all think you’re swell,
And we can’t stand the thought that you’re headed to hell!”
But Horton just laughed and he wiggled his trunk.
The bible to him was a big bunch of bunk.
He meant what he said and he said what he meant,
“Religion is silly a hundred percent.”
The Who Evangelical let out a snort in
A very snide way most insulting to Horton.
“You say you’re an atheist? Here’s what we’ll do —
We all know that atheists are anti-Who —
We’ll drive you from Whoville; we’ll send you away.
Or else we will force you to worship and pray.
A person’s a person, no matter how small
But an atheist isn’t a person at all!”
But Horton just laughed once again even louder
And told all the Whos he would not take a powder,
Nor worship some stupid nonsensical being
That no one was hearing and no one was seeing.
“I will not be threatened,” he said. “It’s not funny.
I won't trust your god with my flag or my money!
I will not allow him to influence science.
An elephant thrives on his own self-reliance!”
The Who Evangelical said, “My dear chap, sure
You think you’re so smart, but just wait till the rapture.”
The anti-Christ’s coming and then you will find,
That your friends are in heaven but you’re left behind.
“We cannot allow that to happen to you,
Because, after all, Jesus loves ev’ry Who.
You must accept God for the good of us all.
A person’s a person no matter how small.
“And though you’re no Who (you are just a big elephant),
God loves you, too. What you are is irrelevant.
He can destroy us if someone’s defiant.
A sinner’s a sinner no matter how giant!”
The Whos approached Horton, began to surround him.
If some of the Whos had their way, they’d have drowned him.
Some others thought maybe they might build a fire.
And stoning was mentioned among the Who choir.
But Horton was huge and avoided the crunch of them,
Picked up his foot, and he stepped on a bunch of them,
Hoped the survivors would give up their mission,
So here’s what he told them about superstition:
“The oddest of oddities isn’t as odd
As people believing that there is a god.
There isn’t a heaven, or hell you should dread.
A person’s a person — unless he is dead.”
This Sunday, I visited Horikawa-no-ike pond, here in Kyoto (where I currently call home). Sunday marked the culmination of the O-bon festival, and Japanese families sent off the spirits of their ancestors with lanterns set afloat on the water. For ~$10, you could paddle around in a rowboat.
Appropriate for a time when we're about to be getting a meteor shower, no? They taste like you would expect cheese pringles (think dusted with parmesan, or whatever it is they dust cheese-flavored popcorn with) to taste. What cheese has to do with "night star" is anyone's guess. Perhaps something related to the moon being made out of cheese?
Yesterday at 7:00am, I got out of my bed, walked downstairs, grabbed a towel out of the closet at the end of the hall, and tossed it on the bathroom counter. I took a shower with the same body wash I've always used, then shaved in front of the sink, head tilted to one side to see the edge of the mirror that doesn't fog, and put the bathmat up to dry. I put on the old clothes that I had brought downstairs with me, all clean, just like the day I left them. I went to the kitchen, petted the dog, got a bowl out of the cabinet, and poured myself some Cocoa Puffs cereal and ate it. I got myself a glass of orange juice and went upstairs, noticing then that the upstairs trashcan needed a new bag - whoever took the trash out last forgot to put a new one in. I went back downstairs and got one. After putting the new bag in, I lay down on the upstairs loveseat, which made that same old squeaky noise when it rocked back and forth.
And then, a curious thing happened. I cried. I cried hard. I cried for a long time.
Home. One word, and yet it means so much more than I could ever say.
I cried because I hadn't done any of those things in one and a half years. I cried because I found myself rediscovering things I wasn't even aware that I had missed.
I am home.
Ninja-before-posting-edit: I wrote this yesterday, and didn't have a chance to post it. Hence I changed the beginning from "Today" to "Yesterday". I'll write a bit about today (my birthday) in a few.
A test of the new link between my MTGSalvation RSS Feed and Facebook. If it works correctly, this just may inspire me to post to my blog more than every, oh, say, two months or so. Cheers!
03-31-2009, 01:29 AM
As for me - I hit up ComiSite in Matsue and scored some sweet loot today.
I spent way too much money (about $65 dollars, and it's just a small, out-of-the-way store), but I had a fantastic day.
The ice cream I had today was pear flavored*. Our prefecture is famous for its pears. The mascot for our prefecture is a pear/bird in a sailor outfit, actually (don't ask). His name is Tori-pi (pron. Toh-Ree-Pee). Tori means "bird", and our prefecture's name is "Tottori". The one I had was a half/half cone - the other half being vanilla from Daisen Farms, located on the local landmark Mt. Daisen.
*side note*: I have had a Green Tea McFlurry before, and it was delicious. Mmmm.
And as for the cards, I only got a couple of boosters today, but all I had a picture of was the box. The cards are in Japanese, of course.
04-28-2009, 12:18 AM
I'm looking forward to Golden Week, the big holiday here in Japan. I've got one teaching day tomorrow, and then nothing until Thursday of the week after. WOOO! My partner in crime Jeremy has already left on vacation, so I'm covering his classes tomorrow while he's in London visiting the folks.
I'm excited about the break, but for different reasons than you might think. I've only got four teaching weeks left in this job!! Four weeks... it hardly seems real. One of those weeks is only three days long, too, and another will consist of the new teacher shadowing me the whole week. I'm leaving the school, saying goodbye to all my students (which I'm sure will be rough on me) after the first week of June, and my goodbye party is going to be May 31st. I'm still in the midst of planning it, but invitations have already been sent out. I'm going to be using the time off this week and next to look for a job! Hopefully, I'll be able to find something relatively easily, and figure out just exactly where in Japan I'm moving to after the first week of June.
Wow... so many memories I've made here. It hardly seems like it's been a few months, let alone a year and a half. I am super pumped about traveling in June and then going home (HOME!!!!) around the beginning of July, though. It's gonna be a helluva birthday party on July 2nd (my 25th), and again on July 10th (my mother's 50th). My brother's birthday is on the 14th, and my cousin's wedding is the 11th, so I've got more than a few reasons to be home then. I'll be staying for around three weeks, I figure, before going back and enjoying a nice month or two of vacation in Japan and then starting my new job.
04-29-2009, 09:55 PM
Well, anyway, I made it out to Hobby Japan in Matsue this afternoon. ComiSite didn't have any ARB, but Hobby Japan did! I bought 8 boosters. I was hoping to get a Maelstrom Pulse, but that didn't happen, sadly. Here's what I did get:
The worst part? Out of those... NO - zip, zilch, nada - Qasali Pridemage. That makes me a sad panda.
I'm surprising myself by remembering the new cards, though. I can remember what 90% of the cards I'm looking at do, even though I can't read them. And I did get 2 x Intimidation Bolt, which is awesome.
Hey everybody. I don't feel much like blogging tonight, but I will anyhow. I just have felt out of touch with the online community here lately. I don't know, maybe I'll get back into it. Anyway... I digress.
Today was an awesome day. Three weeks ago, another teacher named Nancy invited me out to a party she was having with her husband. It was his birthday, and a karaoke place called Shidax that's around here serves free cake on birthdays, so that's where we went. Today was the day of the party. Instead of typing a lot, since I don't feel so inclined this evening, I'll just share some pictures, and a few comments.
First, a group photo - (Top): Me, Renee, Vivian, (Bottom) Nancy, Nancy's Husband, Nancy's Sister.
Second, well, as you can see, we had a pretty awesome time.
Third... after karaoke, we went bowling at the YSP lanes, which is relatively close to the karaoke place. We met another friend of Nancy's there, Marshall, and he was an all-around cool guy. He bowls nearly every day. We played 4 games. Though I didn't beat Marshall, I did get my highest score ever - a 133.
Here's a list of where everybody's from. We're all English teachers, believe it or not.
Name ... Origin
Me ... America, Ohio
Renee ... America, Florida
Vivian ... Phillipines
Nancy ... Australia
Marshall ... Phillipines
After bowling, Nancy took Renee home, and then we went out to the Big Boy restaurant to eat, and after that, chatted. We didn't get out of there until 9:30 at night, and we had started the karaoke party at 2:00! I decided to go up to DD House and play some DDR after that. I didn't get back home until around 11:00. Whew. What a day!
Welcome everyone. Today... I have been in Japan for one year. What a trip it has been.
Right now, I guess, I'm feeling kind of melancholy... reflective might be a better word.
I got into a bit of an argument with someone via e-mail today. I had mistaken what she meant in part of an earlier e-mail. She was commenting on something, I guess, rather than asking what it meant. When I suggested a translation, I got a reply along the lines of "I already know. Didn't you read my e-mail? I dislike noobs". Well, you can imagine that didn't go over well with me... and so a few e-mails were sent back and forth, ending in several apologies on both sides. I think we both understand each other a little bit better now, though.
She is fiercely independent - as I am learning more and more - and in offering help, it must sometimes seem an unintended insult. I admire her for that independence. At the same time, I recognize a kind of stubbornness that I am guilty of myself... letting one's need to be independent alienate one from other people. I've had to fight that ever since I came to Japan. Being in a foreign country, I was forced into a situation in which I had to accept help - I literally couldn't do anything on my own. It's a humbling experience to suddenly not be able to read your own mail. I hope I can share a little bit of that acceptance of other people with her.
She wrote about our "quarrel" today on her blog... goodness, but I wish I could read Japanese. I've been relying on Google and Babelfish for translation - and while they work in principle, machine translation is very poor, so I can never quite be sure of what is being said. I can get the general idea, but the details are often lost. I'm hoping that I've not done or said anything to offend her too much.
She suggested going out sometime again - when, I have no idea. She mentioned (during our exchange of apologies) that she doesn't like owing people, in any shape or form - so perhaps it was my mistake that I offered to treat her to dinner today rather than simply inviting her. Well... let bygones be bygones, I suppose. Water under the bridge. I'll know better what to do next time. We're still friends, and that's what matters. I guess the fact that I'm willing to write this much about one person is indicative of just how in over my head I am, right? I tell myself that I shouldn't do this to myself, but... I can't help it. There's just something about her. Just seeing her smile makes me happy. A dozen different love songs come to mind... each appropriate in different ways.
Reflections on my year in Japan are coming soon. First, I'm going out to DD House (to play DDR, of course) taking an inadvertent nap ^_^;, and then going to Frisch's Big Boy for dinner.
Gosh, how long has it been? Two months? I haven't posted to this thing in that long, wow. I guess I should explain a few things.
When I last wrote, I had just met a girl named Yuko. Well... that lasted all of not even one meeting. She canceled the first venture I arranged, going hiking (said she was sick), and I've never heard from her since. I've already forgotten about her - it was a non-thing, so to speak. I couldn't care less.
Strangely enough, I'm... happy. I've been extremely busy these last couple of months. After getting the green folder caught up, I had a bunch of other projects to do... often one after the other. We've had three parties since then - our adult Christmas party, our kids Christmas party, and a bowling party for highschool kids. Those were all on consecutive weekends, too. Phew. I've got pictures of all of those up on my photobucket account, for those of you that know where that is. There is even a video. Yeah, that's right: I'm Santa Clause.
During this time, I've also met... someone else. We have a lot in common, especially with regard to personality. We've been out shopping together twice, and a number of other things. Despite a series of trials and tribulations, including a sickness and the (non)release of a flash series on Newgrounds, I managed to successfully invite her over to my house for Christmas, and to give her a present - and get one in return. She got me a really awesome black hanten with a dragon design - it's fantastic! I really like this girl... she's beautiful, and smart... and I don't want to rush things, so... I'll just see where things take us. I've invited her out to celebrate my one year anniversary of arriving in Japan on the 31st, and I'm awaiting her reply.
Speaking of which - the 31st marks the one year anniversary of my leaving the 'States and coming to Japan - one of the biggest, most memomorable, exciting, and life-changing things to ever happen to me. I won't spend time now reflecting on the past year - I'll save that for my blog on the 31st, and the Special Occasions thread I'll make - but suffice it to say, I have had an absolutely amazing time.
I think that covers everything. Now, having made it through the school year, I am on vacation. The school doesn't open again until the 7th, so I've got quite a bit of free time - eight days after today, to be precise. What I'm going to do with those, I'm not quite sure yet. I know what my plans are for the 31st, but aside from that, I've got nothing. Maybe I'll finally get around to going to the Ghibli museum... who knows.
If you've got any questions about anything, particularly about how the year's gone, feel free to leave a comment. I'll be happy to answer anything you can come up with.