Wednesday, March 27, 2013

I Think I Have My Own Real Life Catgirl.

I've never owned a cat. Actually, I'm more of a dog person. But, thanks to the popularity of felines on the old interwebz, I get to live vicariously through the posts, memes and status updates of real cat owners. Their postings have helped me to understand some of the behavioral traits attributed to cats. According to what I've read, they can be vain, aloof and seemingly indecisive in nature, while their moods tend to change from affectionate to aggressive without warning and at a moment’s notice.

I think I'll stick with dogs.

Catgirls are fictional creatures that are extremely popular in the world of Japanese anime. As one may surmise, they’re a cross between girls and cats (hence the name). Basically, they look much like regular girls, but possess some of the physical attributes of cats, primarily having cat ears and tails. Catgirls’ personalities are often similar to cats as well and you can often observe them displaying the personality traits attributed to cats mentioned above.
I mention catgirls because, through keen observation I have been able to deduce that catgirls are not merely a figment of sexually repressed, Japanese animators' imaginations, but they do, in fact, exist.

And I'm married to one.

Here's my proof:

- Mrs. C often craves attention, but wants it on her own terms. That is, she usually wants my attention when I’m otherwise occupied, but tends to be less receptive to me when I’m not busy and volunteer my time. Often, while I’m busy studying, surfing the web, blogging or doing anything else on the computer, she’ll come over and run her fingers across the keyboard for no apparent reason and without warning. Just to get my attention!

- She has a tendency to be a bit vain and you can often find her grooming herself in front of the mirror.

- She also doesn’t seem to like when I pick her up.

Not convinced? That’s because I haven’t gotten to the real proof yet. This came the other night, when I was treated the full range of her cat-like behavior. We were watching TV and I put my arm around her when the following ensued:

First, she tensed up and pulled away. This prompted me to withdraw to my side of the couch, seeing as she was in her “don’t touch me!” mood. I started to pull away...

“Don’t goooo!” she cried as she pinned my arm down with the back of her head.

Caught off guard by her behavior, I stopped and watched her for a few seconds. That was when she reached across and dug her claws nails into my chest.

“OW! What are you, a cat?” I asked.

Then she bit me in the shoulder.

So, you see, this proves that catgirls exist. For an anime nerd like myself, this is great news!  They might not have the ears and tails (sadly), but it’s obvious the personalities are evolving first. I guess I can live with that. maybe the rest will come with time.
Now all I need is to find a cardboard box to keep her distracted when I have to study.
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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

More Disturbing Patterns.

If you've been keeping up with what I've been up to on Sprocket Ink, you'll see my last few posts all seemed to be part of a particular theme. A disturbing theme. Without planning it, both my posts last week focused on specific areas of the human anatomy. The naughty areas.
Oh, no, you didn't!
First, on Tuesday, I wrote about a guy born without a penis, who still managed to be a ladies' man. Then, my post on Friday was about several Japanese studies all pointing to there being benefits to women not wearing bras and how Japanese women were already adopting the habit.

Then there's my post today...

There are only two areas yet I haven't covered (or uncovered, as the case may be) and let's just say today's story isn't about butts.

You do the math.

This has happened before, but I swear it's totally unintentional (which is what the Japanese guys claimed in today's post, actually). Today's story is about a pastry product that's raising more than a few eyebrows in Japan. Yeah, I know. It's got even them shocked. But be warned, this particular baked good may cause you to lose your appetite.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Modern Life Of A Trend.

1. The Trendsetter:

Often the first person given attention for displaying a new trend, the trendsetter may be a celebrity, or even an average individual caught in the right place at the right time.

2. The Virus:

This, of course, refers to the act of "going viral" by the new trend. After the trend is discovered, it draws the attention of others. From curious onlookers to tireless trend hunters. The trend is observed, discussed, liked, disliked, commented on and referred to others who, in turn, observe and discuss and so on. Pop-culture and entertainment media programs begin to "bring you the latest on the craze that's sweeping the country/world/known universe" and even the prime time news makes mention of the trend as relates to its meteoric rise to popularity.

Much like the highly-publicized zombipocalypse, the spread of the trend has taken on a life of its own and seems virtually unstoppable.

3. The Copycat:

There soon emerges trend "copycats" who then set themselves to the task of mimicking the trend and posting video and images of themselves performing the same act which made the trendsetter famous to begin with. As with all things, "artistic license" is soon after introduced by many of the copycats and alternate variations of the trend are born.

4. The Hipster:

Seeing the popularity of this new trend as a new way to draw attention to themselves, the hipster incorporates the trend into their way of life. The trend has now become theirs' and was theirs' "before it was cool" for everyone else to have it. In fact, you know what? Forget that! Everyone else can have the trend. The trend has already become too mainstream, too commercial, too diluted in the mass media social networking culture to be cool anymore.
But always remember, the hipster got tired of the trend before any of you did.

5. The Corporate Machine

By now, the potential for the trend to generate revenue has been noticed. This is where branding of the trend occurs. Sporting goods manufacturers, electronics, all want a piece of the income earning potential the trend possesses. Soon, the trend makes its way to television, the movies, music videos and the top runways all over the globe. Now being a part of the trend comes endorsed with a designer logo and a $2,000 price tag.

6. The Trend Hater

Of course, not everyone follows the trend. There are those who choose to reject the trend on principle, based on its stupidity, or how it has been commercialized. The trend haters thumb their noses and laugh at the followers of the trend, calling then "immature" or "sheep". Trend followers in an act of rebellion vehemently defend their trend and begin blitzing the internet with more and more of it. This soon erupts into all out social network war, with trend haters and followers firing online attacks against one another. Before long the heavy artillery is launched and the battle of the memes begin.
It's not pretty.

7. The End:

All things, however, must eventually come to an end and with time (often about a week) the trend is shuffled off to a retirement spot where it slowly and painfully withers away and fades into oblivion. The trend does not die, though. Not for a long time. Rather, it clings desperately to life, hanging on to the memories of its followers who have given it so much love and attention and spent their hard earned money on maintaining the trend. As long as these relics of its existence remain in use, even sporadically, the trend's light will not be fully extinguished. At least, not until another up and coming trend is born.

Then the cycle begins again...



1. In case you missed it, don't forget to check out my post I did yesterday over at Sprocket Ink too.

2. This post is just one of many you'll find on My Half Assed Life's Weekend Funnies.
Be sure to check it out for links to other funny blogs that'll put a smile in your weekend.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Crazy People Seem Drawn to Me.

Last night I was out on the corner waiting for my wife to get home. Since they don't clash with the days I have school, I normally wait for her like this on the two nights of her own classes, so I can walk her in and help her with her heavy bag full of law books. I’ve even stopped complaining about having to do it for several weeks now. I know… I know… I’m an awesome husband. No need to make a big deal about it.

Anyway, like I said, I was waiting on the corner, playing some bejeweled on my phone when, from the corner of my eye, I noticed some guy walking past. I wasn’t too concerned, but with the amount of cell phone snatch-and-run thefts we’ve been having these days, it never hurts to be careful. I took quick glance and, by all appearances, he just seemed a normal-looking guy on his way home from work. With that, I went back to what I was doing. I decided he wasn’t anyone I needed to concern myself with.

Or so I thought…

When he was close enough to me he suddenly stopped, “Big man (a common way one guy addresses another here), that Blueberry (what he actually called it) could tell me where I living?”

Now when faced with a situation like this I have a tendency to act as if the crazy is totally normal, so as not to agitate the crazy person. I politely nodded and said, “Nope.”

“No? What the fuuu-?!” He never finished the word. He just continued on his way, muttering something that was indiscernible to me.

I watched as he crossed the street and slapped a street sign as he went his way. I put my phone away after that. I didn’t feel like playing anymore.

Was he drunk? I can't say I noticed the scent of any alcohol. This leads me to believe he was just plain nuts, which makes sense since it’s like I’m a magnet for crazy.

I hope he found his way home, though.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Me Vs. Nature Part IV - Revenge Of The Grackle.

Just like with the job I had about a year and a half ago, I now work close enough to where I go to school that I can walk from one point to the other in less than 20 minutes, even if I take my time and walk slowly. I consider it my cardio for the week, plus it saves me on taxi fare, so why not? Right?

Still, it is the dry season again and the sun has been out with a vengeance the last few weeks, so I recently started taking the scenic route, which in this case, ironically, is the shorter of the two main routes to get to class. This route takes me down a street that runs alongside an area known as George the 5th Park, which allows pedestrians to walk under a series of the trees, lining the sidewalk. On the southern side of that street, however, there are some houses and businesses and The Oval, a really large sporting ground used mostly for cricket matches. That takes up about half of that side.

Now you know.

The Oval's walled off like a maximum security prison, sans the guard towers and razor wire and so it's kind of boring and you get more of the blistering sun on that side of the street, so I prefer to stick to the other side with the cool shady trees, some of which start to show their colors off at this time of year, like this Pink Poui tree:
My apologies to all of you who are currently not enjoying the snow wherever you are that are forced to watch this.
Pretty, right?

There is a down side to all this, though. Where there are a lot of trees, there will probably be a lot of Grackles. I've mentioned these guys before. They're tiny black birds that get very territorial around this time of year and attack anyone who comes too close to their nesting spots. They seem to favor attacking me.
Nothing personal, bub... I still kill you.
How they normally do their thing is to swoop down at the heads of passers-by from behind, squawk and then fly back to the safety of a nearby tree. They'll continue doing this until they're satisfied the intruder is well enough away from their territory. You might think they're brave, but I've observed them running from pigeons, which is kind of insulting, if you ask me. Since I don't particularly like being made to duck like a crazy person in the streets every time I suddenly hear that high-pitched "Squawk!" behind my head, I prefer to avoid them.

Then I found the solution to all my problems.

With the birds anyway...

It was purely by accident. The other day, I was on my way to class as usual. I wasn't even thinking about my feathered nemesis at the time and had my music cranked up through my headphones as I made my way. I was also distracted by the text conversation I was having with my wife at the time. It was then I looked up from my phone and noticed my shadow in front of me and an even tinier shadow of a Grackle that was repeatedly swooping down from the trees. I was almost to the end of the Park so I could only assume it had been trying to get my attention for some time, but I hadn't even noticed it until then and not once was I forced to duck or dodge his assault.

AT LAST!!! I found my answer. Music! Music loud enough that it prevented me from hearing the fluttering wings and the annoying "Squawk!" that would force me to look like an idiot in the streets. That was my answer. From here on in I knew what I had to do. So the next day, I was ready. I decided the shorter, scenic route was mine and no tiny bird was going to deter me ever again. I would have the shade of the trees. I would have the shorter walk. I would not be denied! I walked down the street and, as I came up to the trees, I saw a Grackle take up position.

"Hey, Mr. Grackle'" I thought smugly, "You here to try your luck? Betcha won't spook me. Betcha I don't even notice ya."

I may have been enjoying this a little too much.

I continued my walk and turned my MP3 player on my phone up. I wasn't even going to look out for him. In my mind, I had already won against the dreaded bird, so why bother paying attention to his fruitless efforts. The Grackle was now beneath my noticing.

Or not.

Here we have a saying: Who doh hear, does feel.
Apparently, Grackles also practice this policy since, I hadn't made it more than a few steps before I felt its talons on the back of my head.

And I ducked.

Son of a....

The Grackle will not be ignored, it seems. I guess he figured he would try harder this time around to get my attention. It looks like the bird is more persistent than I thought. I looked up and he perched himself up in a nearby tree waiting to strike again, watching me with his beady little eyes and daring me to continue. I decided to admit defeat and crossed over to the other side of the street, away from the trees. I don't get enough sun anyway.

This round went to the bird.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

What's Done In Darkness...

Mrs. C: Vinny... Vinny, wake up!
Me: Huh? Wha..?
Mrs. C: I did a naughty thing... Now it's stuck.
Me: (Fully awake) What?!

Mrs. C hands me her tablet. I'm greeted by the image of a naked Brazilian woman who is bent over and giving me a clear view of her lady bits.

Mrs. C: It's frozen. I can't close it and it won't turn off.
Me: *laughs hysterically*

To properly tell this story I need to go back a little bit. I mentioned a few posts ago that my wife wasn't into porn. While that is true, it isn't like she's never seen an adult movie. Truth be told she actually started to get into it when we first got married.

DON'T GIVE ME THAT LOOK!!! I had nothing to do with it! I made a point of never pushing her in any direction she isn't comfortable. But, like most people she got curious. After a while, her conscience got the better of her and she stopped. Still, every now and then, she gets curious again and she gets tempted to sneak a peek.

Last week Mrs. C’s uncle, The Evangelist, decided to give her a gift of a brand new Galaxy Tab 10.1 as a sort of “thank you” for taking care of his mother, Grandma Evie, and to help her with her law school studies. Am I jealous? A little. But now we don’t have to share the laptop, so I can live with it. She was glad, obviously. Before that we sometimes argued over whose assignment was more urgent, so it was a great gift.

Anyway, fast forward to 1 AM on Friday morning, when Mrs. C tried to watch internet porn on her new Galaxy Tab... the one that her evangelist uncle - the one who helped to raise her for a few years - gave her. And the whole thing froze. Karmic much?

The following is a dramatization of how she explained the situation unfolded:
Mrs. C: So, you see, it was just one thing which led to another. It's not like I set out to watch porn. The link is fake, by the way. Don't click on it if someone sends it to you on Facebook.
Me: No shit.
Mrs. C: Anyway, I thought it froze because it was overheating so...
Me: In the freezer?!
Mrs.C: I thought it needed to cool down!
Me: Cool down?! How long were you up watching porn? (And what kind of porn were you watching that would heat the tablet up so bad?)
Mrs. C: I don't know! A while... STOP LAUGHING!!! This is why I didn't want to come to you with this.
Me: Sorry.
Mrs. C: HELP ME!!!
Me: Okay... Did you check the manual?
Mrs. C: I did, but it's in Spanish.
Me: Wrong manual. I took the English version out of the box. It's on the table.
Mrs. C: Oh... *Goes and gets the manual* Can you fix it?
Me: Lemme see...
Mrs. C: You're not going to blog this, are you?

Isn't she precious? Anyway, I start looking through the tiny booklet when I suddenly come to a realization.

Me: Wait. This is a computer, after all. Did you try holding down the power button for 8 seconds?
Mrs. C: Huh?

I hold down the power button and, sure enough, in  8 seconds it powers down.

Me: It's how you reset most computers. You hold the button down for 8 to 10 seconds.
Mrs. C: You mean those 8 seconds was all it would have taken for me not to get busted?!

(Way to keep things in perspective, babe.)

Anyway, I power it back on and it boots up normally. I run a quick virus scan to see if anything shows up. It seems all is well. Unfortunately for my wife, that screenshot of the naked Brazilian flaunting her lady bits is added to her browser home screen's most viewed pages. Since we never figured out how to remove those screenshots, we have to wait until the browser replaces it with something else. Just as well. I think it'll make a great badge of shame to remind her of her folly.

Mrs. C: No more studying for me tonight. All this wore me out.
Me: I bet.
Mrs. C: Shut up!

A few minutes later we're both in bed.

Me: I can't believe you! Up at 1 in the morning watching porn.
Mrs. C: It. was. an. accident. Drop it! You know, though. Those movies really do have a way of turning you on... Hey... Vinny... You still awake?

So much for being worn out.
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