June 30, 2004
The things I do for a movie...

So, in a pretty much last minute decision, I ended up going down to Springfield to watch Spider-Man 2 with Chris and Dre. I naturally end up leaving later than planned, and combined with not enough sleep and traffic that was inexplicably slow, I arrive at the mall about 2 minutes after the showtime started.

Somehow, Dre arrived at almost the same time. Chris was the only one that had been there for a while.

Not much happened, other than buying the tickets and walking in while the previews were still rolling (for about 9 minutes by then). I missed part of the opening credits when I stepped out to the concession stand for popcorn and drink (which I would normally have gone without, but I was particularly hungry and thirsty and I wouldn't be able to eat or drink anything else for the next 2 hours).

The movie itself? Chris and Dre said it was better than the first, while I think it certainly was at least as good, but I can't really pick a favorite of the two. But I do think that it deserves all the praise it has gotten. It really is quite good and everyone should go see it this weekend or as soon as possible.

After the movie, we dropped by the arcade to see absolutely nothing (except Harvey pulling tokens from a machine) on the way back to my car, then headed towards Chris's house, stopping at Wendy's on the way. I just drop Chris off, and end up taking Dre right back to the mall. Naturally, by this time, I've hit rush hour traffic on the way home, so it takes a lot longer to get back, but I still get home at an hour where mowing the entire lawn was doable. So, I did just that.

Yeah, that's really all that happened today.

Tomorrow is when I go in to Kevyn's workplace and talk to the boss. We'll see how that goes... especially since I need Otakon and probably the week after it off, because Jascii and Aya will be staying here and I can't just leave them in my house alone. ^^;

Oh, and I actually did this yesterday, but you may have noticed some more template changes on the front page - namely, I removed the Archives link from the navbar again (and put the link under the monthly archive list on the right sidebar) and I finally picked out a link image for DreamHost. If you need hosting, they are inexpensive and they're a heck of a lot more reliable than the old hosting I was on that ditched and left me without a webhost for a while. =p

Posted at 11:51 PM | Comments (0)

June 29, 2004
Backlogged again...

Last week, TRSI shipped out my preorders of RoD the TV vol.1+book and Juuni Kokki vol.6. Pretty light viewing, and I was able to enjoy both on the HD.

I also had gone completely nuts last week and ordered many, MANY things using DeepDiscountDVD's 20% off coupons. The first wave of the DVD army I ordered arrived today. I actually ended up placing 3 separate orders because I kept remembering more stuff I needed to order before the coupon ran out, and there were 5 or 6 codes floating around. The box that arrived today contained all the in-stock discs of two orders - apparently, they consolidate shipping between orders better than some other stores do. The loot?

Kaleido Star vol.1+box+vol.2, Kiddy Grade vol.3-4, Panyo Panyo Di Gi Charat vol.1, Angelic Layer vol.7 (but no vol.6, grrr), Hanadan vol.5, and Wedding Peach vol.3.

Lots of wuv that I don't actually have the money to pay for, but if those work opportunities pan out, that won't be a problem for long. ^^;

And I'm already considering asking the Broccoli International people to bring a copy of Chocola 2001 and 2003 to Otakon for me to purchase, so I can try to get all three Chocolas signed by Koge-Donbo.

Money? What's that?

Posted at 08:14 PM | Comments (0)

Something bigger than the Xbox!...

So, yeah, I still have very little to update about. Stuff actually happened this past weekend, and I still haven't talked about Patti's birthday, so I think I'll start actually doing that, or something.

But first, some luck with the job front. Kevyn informed me of an opening where he works for someone to... pack boxes for shipment. Amusingly, this menial task pays more than Suncoast did after providing expert customer service for some 2 years. I'm going to go in and talk to him on Thursday at 1pm (he operates out of his home). Also, I'm following a lead on a job posting from Justin Sevakis about subtitling for the TV station he works for. I want to be able to contact him directly about that, but I'm hoping something works out on that angle.

The anti-hotlinking code for images is also staying for a while. I noticed some people actually searched for the Saikano game images I put up ages ago that got hotlinked in some French forum. They didn't even remove the image from the thread yet...

In any case, on Saturday, I woke up entirely too late to head up to Bel Air (MD) for the console IIDX tournament being held. I also found out it wasn't being held at Boardwalk Fun in Harford Mall anymore, and I had no directions to the new location. So, I ended up going to SF Mall, as it was also the last time I would be able to see Kp for quite a while. Billy was also headed out for CA for a few weeks, so we had to get some Daisukekekeke from him first. =p I also got to see Ken for the first time in forever too.

I also played GGXX at SF on a whim. Putting in a single credit and picking May (the only character I'm half-decent at as I've played the game on maybe 4 occasions now), I beat Chris's Baiken (or did he use someone else?) and went on to get to like the 4th to last battle in 1p. Yeah, I actually figured out how to get more than a 2 combo. Forgot how to do her Destroyed move again though...

After the tournament ended slightly before mall closing, most of us SF people and the Hagerstown people that drove down carted off to IHOP for a late dinner. (Minus Billy, as he had to go pack up to leave the next morning.) Our party of 13 seemed to cause great confusion with our server, with massive delays of our food (bad since some of us hadn't eaten anything over the day) and many missing/wrong side items when the food actually came out. Amusingly, it seemed that the server would have brought anything out at request after we commented about our missing sides. We were too nice to exploit her, though.

I also finally managed to get rid of a large percentage of those FFX-2 posters that have been sitting in my car for who-the-hell-knows how long. =p

After we were done at IHOP, I ended up taking Chris back to his house, along with Dre. Ek and David were there and still alive (as Chris asked when he walked through the front door). Somehow, I end up staying overnight, after watching some more Silent Hill 4 gameplay and unlocking a ton of stuff in Chris's Xbox copy of Soul Calibur II. (He can play as Assassin and Berserker now, which I'm sure he was dying to have...)

Didn't do much else after that... had spaghetti and garlic bread for lunch, played many things on the modded Xbox (after finding out all those games on the HDD were preloaded by Pandora's... gee, we could so get their asses sued out of existance if we ratted them out to MS), saw Ek and David leave, and played Puzzle Fighter and Pocket Fighter before leaving for home myself. My linger powers are strong.

That's about it for this past weekend. Since I'm still up, I guess I'll get into Patti's birthday...

As you can see on the date of my last entry, that happened nearly 2 weeks ago now. As usual, I didn't get enough sleep before departing to SF to pick people up. It didn't help that I ran into the worst traffic I have ever faced getting to SF. I ended up fighting sleepiness on the road for 2 hours, on a trip that usually takes me no longer than 35 minutes. Naturally, everyone was more than ready to go by the time I actually got to SF, so we departed almost immediately.

Once again, we hit traffic before hitting the Wilson bridge. Traffic always seems to be at a standstill there even if the bridge isn't drawn.

That wasn't the end, either... going into Waldorf, we ran into another massive traffic jam, caused by a combination of an accident and one very poorly timed traffic light that was choking the traffic from what -was- an expressway. Not only that, our Mapquest directions caused great confusion that caused me to make a turn far too early, which caused me to never find the place. (Kevin found it in his car because he accidentally passed the sign that confused us - which actually saved him from getting lost.) I had to call and get Kevin to swing back to the Wawa I decided to stop at after trying several times. It didn't help that it had started raining heavily again, so combined with the fact that sunlight had run out when we got past that traffic light, we had no visibility left.

So, by the time we actually got there, it was past 8pm or so, well after the halfway point of the party. At least we didn't miss one of the blaringly loud bands that could almost be heard from the Checkers we got our dinners from, or the cutting of the cake and the multilingual (kind of) singing of Happy Birthday. Since I had actually taken the trouble of hauling my computer over, I set it up regardless of the remaining time. Kevin had to leave shortly after that. Kevyn and Josh left a while later, too, but not before I finished setting the PC up...

My makeshift computer setup consisted of Spare, the 486's 14" monitor, the not-very-portable stereo from the basement, my keyboard and mouse, Jon's PSX->USB adapter, and some other guy's power strip when I wasn't able to bring one. To test it, I pulled up Marvel vs. Capcom, and used it to configure and test the controls. It worked like a charm, and people ended up playing that instead of switching to another game. They had never played the game before though, and had absolutely no idea what they were doing. So, I jumped in, picking my joke team of Roll and Rockman (Megaman). I end up with a winning streak of somewhere around 10 or so (playing someone who was actually pretty decent twice) before I just handed it to Kevyn after I was sick of playing. =p

At some point, we also switched to Tetris Attack (after once again setting up controls) and had many matches. Despite sucking total ass, I managed to come up with a few wins. Jeff creamed me in a match against him, though. I just can't pull x9 chains out of nowhere anymore. >.> No one else did that night either, though. The flakiness of the adapter probably had something to do with it, too... we were having some significant control issues. There really is nothing as good as the original SNES controller...

Other games throughout the night included titles like Saturday Night Slam Masters and other games I can't recall at all. I also got a chance to pull out the pop'n ASC that I had lugged in at the end, which ended up delaying our departure as a line formed for it. x_X We ended up leaving at just about the same time as everyone was vacating the building at 2:30am though, squeezing Billy, Chris, and Ek into my car. (That passenger load would ordinarily not be a problem, but the fact that I had taken up two passengers worth of space with the computer and other things caused Chris and Ek to get rather close for comfort in the backseat. =p)

The way back was largely uneventful, with no cars on the road. On the way out of Waldorf, I saw another wreck still sitting on the road near the one that was causing us problems on the way in. I also passed an SUV that was flipped upside down in the middle of the Springfield interchange. Naturally, it completely blocked the exit I needed to get to, and I ended up looping up 395, then coming back so I could get into the Springfield area. We finally arrived at Kp's place at nearly 3:10am or so. So, for the third straight time the trip took way longer than it should have, and it wasn't even due to traffic.

We all ended up staying overnight, with Kp and I staying up the latest. I actually ended up catching that night's ep of Detective Conan (Case Closed), continuing my streak of no missed episodes regardless of where I was. =p Kp mostly played Disgaea, trying to finish the game before he had to be shipped out. (Unfortunately, he didn't quite make it.)

In the morning, I hooked up my PC to their LAN, and we copied stuff off of each other's PCs. The noise factor from my PC came up, noting that it made the basement sound like a jet engine - and with 3 PCs already running in their basement, it was quite impressive that my PC alone drowned out the noise of all of them.

I also finally got the chance to try out Burger King's "Angus" burger, which I had been curious about since the ad bombardment for it started. Naturally, it turned out to be a big disappointment, being basically a larger portion of beef, which tasted almost exactly like their normal Whopper except the patty was thicker and more tender. I think if I eat at Burger King again, I'll just stick with the double Whopper, which is twice the meat and much more in condiments from the wideness, for pretty much the same cost.

Eventually, Pakman gave Ek a ride home (Billy had gone home before the Burger King run) and I took Chris to his house. Silent Hill 4 was in, as was the PSX, which I still think is a rather silly purchase to make when you're in the US. When you can't use its PVR-like functions at all, the inconveniences it forces on actual game usage just counted against it. The fact that it actually took up more space than their Xbox didn't help it, either.

So, I departed after watching some of Silent Hill 4 from the beginning. I was able to identify Cynthia before she introduced himself, simply because of the fact that I had been keeping up with the DDR Extreme US news. (The "Your Rain" mix prominently features Cynthia in the background video, with her name literally spelled out in big neon lights.)

And, that's about it for the two breaks in boredom over the past two weeks. People are going to be off for AX soon if not already, and I'm still wishing I could have gone this year. At least I know I'll at least see Jascii at Otakon, but many people aren't going this year. ;_;

I swear this entry isn't long because of the glitch that makes the right sidebar expand to the entire browser window's width if the left entry section isn't long enough to cover the space. Really.

Posted at 04:20 AM | Comments (0)

June 17, 2004
Nothing at all...

There haven't been many updates, because there is very little to update about. Nothing interesting at all has happened in the past few weeks.

Today, I'm going to be heading to Patti's 15th birthday party. Why it's being held in Waldorf on a Thursday (what I regard as the worst possible place at the worst possible time) is beyond me.

MaayaSakamoto.net implemented a referrer lockout for his MP3 downloads, when he found several sites not only linking to them, but using them as background music. Following this example, I've started experimenting with referrer lockouts for images on my sites. Let me know if anything is broken by this. I'm not sure if I'm going to keep this on a permanent basis or not yet - there have only been a couple of offenses serious enough for me to block, and I don't know if I really want to block all outside referrals or not. (Right now, the only real issues are people that use custom subdomains on LiveJournal to read friends pages, or search engines other than Google.com.)

I still have a few photos I want to put up, too... and I still need to get all those DVDs listed on eBay...

Posted at 06:55 AM | Comments (0)

June 04, 2004
I lost 0 pounds playing a video game!...

So, instead of actually getting any sleep overnight, I ended up staying up late enough to catch the DDR segment that was on NBC's Today Show. It was a pretty amusing segment, triplet Babylons and all. And public ridicule of national TV personalities is always fun.

I figured I might as well update about it, since the URL to this site is watermarked into my capture of the segment. =p (I don't actually link any of my videos from this site, if that's what you came to look for. I'm looking for alternate hosting for my DDR segment capture, anyways.)

I think I'll actually get some sleep now...

Posted at 10:20 AM | Comments (0)

June 02, 2004
Third entry of the day...

... and it's only a little after 4 in the morning. Yeesh.

I just adjusted all the templates in the site which causes a bit of a logic change in how people will interface with it. The biggest change is that comments are now viewable in static html instead of calling up the comment CGI script and pulling it from the database on demand. Originally, I didn't even generate individual entry archive pages because of the limited webspace on the old account, but this is no longer a problem, so I decided to make the switch. This causes less access to the database, and also speeds things up quite a bit. I'm trying to figure out how to make the site return you to the static entry page rather than the comments CGI after you actually leave a comment, though...

Noting on some of the structure changes - all my sites are now hosted in their entirety on DreamHost. (Yes, I'm going to use that referrer link at every opportunity.) This means that StarCreator.com and megami.starcreator.com are now actually on the same physical server, instead of being separate locations like before. I won't be moving the gallery back to StarCreator.com itself, though. I've actually implemented a bandwidth throttle on megami (which is by far the most bandwidth-consuming of the multiple domains), so this gives me the advantage of letting me throttle only megami without cutting off access to this site.

And I'm -really- tired, so I'm going to call it a night now. This took WAY too long.

Thanks to raziel for converting the database to an importable form so I could actually get this site up and running again.

11:40 AM - Looks like the comment issue has been fixed - I had the right line of code to do it, but MT is apparently picky about -where- you put it. Thanks to Jeff Lawson for helping me out on that one. I also added an actual date stamp to the individual archive pages - not sure why it wasn't there in the first place. The only thing I haven't tested is MT-Blacklist functionality.

And yeah, it's far too early for me to be up, but I was forced awake 3 hours ago by some of the nastiest loose stools I've seen in a while. Need to re-hydrate then catch up on the rest of my sleep now...

Posted at 04:25 AM | Comments (0)

Testing, part 2...

This is the second post I made. Actually, the first post ALMOST went without errors, but didn't actually get onto the webpage because I needed to reconfigure the web paths. I think comments and new entries should work now.

If you've actually been interested in what I've been doing over the last month and a half (yes, the site was non-functional for that long - I missed the entire month of May because of it!), you can peek over at my LiveJournal for some random ramblings.

And yes, I know the site looks quite broken when there aren't enough entries to make the left column longer than the right. I don't know how to fix this, though...

Posted at 02:53 AM | Comments (0)

Here goes nothing...

I'm now testing whether I can actually write entries on this thing again. If you see this, well, I guess it does work. (There are still a few problems with some parts of the backend interface giving me Internal Server Error pages, but that can be worked out later... I think...)

In any case, StarCreator.com has been running on DreamHost for at quite some time now, after the previous webhost imploded. (Yeah, I'm screwed out of about $15 there.)

Posted at 02:48 AM | Comments (0)