Back to the Grind…

Friday, May 22 2009 at 00:08 (Books, Daily Life, Rants, Reviews, Videos) (, , , , , )

Yay! No more school! Whoop!

Oh damn – we forgot to mention that you have to do twenty odd exams first.

Well yes, it’s been an interesting and educational week for the most part.
Monday began with a sharp RS exam on the half of the topics that I don’t know so well. In the event, it transpired not that the questions were hard, but either very simple or extremely vague, i.e. asking for eight marks’ worth of ‘How Christians can use Jesus’s teaching on forgiveness today’, for which I wrote basically that in a mugging, if they ask for your wallet, you can ‘turn the other cheek’ and offer them your watch as well.
I spent from the end of that exam until one o’clock watching everyone else frantically revising Maths whilst I guffawed in a rather worried manner because I was suddenly unsure of how to complete the square. I spent some time in the library with Max, Chris and Nico (who had tagged along because… I don’t know) but soon got bored of their efforts to actually revise, so I went and read Catch 22 on my own on a chair in the corner of the room. After managing to plough through the first chapter or so, I went and talked to Chloé about some aspects and got that really guilty feeling where you realise that you might end up doing as well or nearly as well as someone who’s done billions of hours of revision without doing any yourself – She’d re-written out both of her exercise books in their entirety… Eesh.
The exam came, containing a peculiar mixture of year six SATs-level questions and A*+ questions that explode heads with a single glance – a trend that AQA (one of the exam boards) seems to be following in all of their papers, as Spanish and RS have been similar.

After that ordeal many of the students felt the need to frolic and go into Framlingham to buy cigarettes and have sex behind trees (may not have actually occurred), but, being the sappy nerd I am, I stayed at school with intention of revising some English or similar. What actually happened was that I ended up sitting in the (very windy) courtyard of the school with Rose, Max, Chloé and Alfie discussing some weird things, like rape dreams and Alfie’s dreams where he was making out with Miss Fletcher on her desk and later Juliette in his kitchen; If he’s willing to risk that many STDs, he really must be desperate.

Tuesday was fun because it began with a whopping two-and-a-quarter hour English literature exam, which sucked a lot. The poetry questions were vague and unpleasant, then the one on Of Mice and Men sucked balls, then… Salvation came in the form of ‘How successfully does the playwright show a hypocritical and class-ridden society in ‘An Inspector Calls’?
Hypocritical? Class-ridden? Could this be… a question for intelligent people? I jumped straight into it  in full writing force, being a complete dick about my writing style and whoring off as many ridiculous descriptions as I could in the 45-minute time limit. At one point I even described the society as ‘obdurate in its contracted world,’ a line utterly stolen from ‘Old Man, Old Man,’ a poem I had used in the question earlier on.
After the exam I wandered around for a bit as, yet again, everyone had gone into Framlingham save for a few select ‘cool’ people. I found some of these people and talked for a bit, but then they all went home, so I was a tad on the screwed side. I found some more people, then they went into an IT exam, so after that I manged to find three people who were, like me, stuck at school all day and not currently in Framlingham. We talked for a bit about old theme tunes to things, then lots of other stuff happened and we ended up playing charades. I was also told that the ICT exam featured Mario. I hope whichever exam board it is realise that putting something I love into a traumatic experience might cause me to call Nintendo’s lawyers…
When I finally got on the bus, it was a real relief. I wonder whether sixth form with be this boring.

I went in on Wednesday to do a Spanish reading exam, my last ever association with that subject. It wasn’t that bad, again being a mixture of very easy or very hard questions, but mostly guessable at the very least. After the exam Eliza, Emily and Chloé asked if i’d like to go into Framlingham with them, but it was a quarter past ten and I was being picked up at eleven, meaning that the time wasn’t enough to go into Fram and come back, but still long enough to be a dull wait. I wasted time axing through a few more pages of Catch 22, which is very funny in places but like reading syrup most of the time, then I laughed at people who were revising for the science exam that afternoon that I did and got an A* in six months ago before going outside, where I met Yasemin. We talked for a bit, then my dad FINALLY arrived to pick me up.
We went down to our boat briefly, where I was set to work screwing in some headlining panels, the we went to B&Q to buy a new door for my brother’s bedroom. When we did get home I went into the aforementioned bedroom and finally found the Guitar Hero wireless guitar thingy, so I finally got to play a few songs before remembering how much I suck. And yes Chris, I know it’s inferior to Rock Band…
More to the point, in my internet surfery I became interested in the upcoming Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, a title which has only recently been announced to be releasing outside of Japan and thus before now it was invisible to me. It’s a crossover-fighting game that seems fairly insane(ly Japanese). See for yourself…

As the Game Overthinker put it – ‘The Very Definition of AWESOME’

Yep… I even think the guy who says ‘Very Good’ is the same guy who says ‘Very good!’ when you catch a big-arse fish in Breath of Fire III – they are both Capcom after all. In the Nintendo Power article that revealed the game’s release outside of Japan (the rights to the Tatsunoko properties are owned by multiple people in the US, so licensing was difficult) the guy being interviewed said that after the massive internet feedback from Westerners who wanted the game they worked to get the licenses and may add extra characters and online modes for an English release. Disappointingly, I don’t think the characters will be shouting in Manga-nese in our version.
At the end of the article, the guy said that he felt people should familiarise themselves with some of the incorporated Tatsunoko franchises so they could understand all the nods to characters and backstory.

To that end I began scouring the internets for ‘Karas’, a six part OVA series made a few years ago to celebrate Tatsunoko’s fortieth anniversary. After finding several streaming versions, I realised that due to the stunning nature of the visuals in this anime, I would have to find it in decent quality first, and I did – a torrent where each half-hour episode was ~500mb. After starting that I realised that I was gonna need my torrents to go a bit faster if I wanted it any time this year, so I started snooping around and found a port forwarding checker, which said that my ports weren’t forwarded. I had forwarded them some time ago, and it had worked, but it clearly wasn’t now, as speeds of 5kb/s were showing. After a tad more snooping I realised that the problem was that I didn’t have a static IP address, so the ports I’d forwarded were only for the address I’d been using at that time. I set up a static address, and bam – 100kb/s instead. I went to sleep.

Today I woke up and checked mah torrents to find that I still had a good thirty percent to go, but that the first two episodes had downloaded, so I watched them on my Wii whilst my dad was outside. Well, it looked freaking AMAZING, particularly the eponymous Karas, who are an amoured samurai-raven badass of CGI mixed with traditional anime that have some really nifty sword techniques, but the story was another… story. It didn’t really make any sense to me, and so I was fairly confused. However, as the day went by and more episodes steadily found their way to me, the story became a bit clearer, darker and more awesome. It all hung together pretty well, and almost every single fight scene just kicks all amounts of arse (yes, even more than Bleach) and it all made me nerd giggle rather a lot. Everything really picks up in the second half of the episodes, leading to a blistering climax (with buckets of gore) and a decent ending.
This is I what I call MANime – Imagine The Dark Knight with more over-the-top action and a dash of Japanese.

Sorry Max, I just wanted to get that off my chest. I did try and include some computer stuff as well…



  1. Chris said,

    Wasn’t going to say ANYTHING about Rock Band… I mean, I only play Guitar on it anyway, so it is pretty much the same thing… for me anyway…
    Manime you say? Really, it sounded like one of those things where a plot is built around the violence… and then violence is the main thing that it goes for… meh, you like it, you like it.
    Uh…. Good luck in yo’ exam today BOI! I’ll be in school till the first is over then I’ll probably go into Fram with Tom and Bethany and people…. seeing as I am REALLY bored at home…

    • joethearachnid said,

      No, there’s actually only massive amounts of violence in the third act; the rest of the story is mostly… other stuff, although the fights are definitely the highlights. When i watch it again it’ll probably make more sense…

  2. Max said,

    You forgot to mention the awesome after-ICT game of Charades we had with Yazoo, An Inspector Call, and other hilarity.

    Also, don’t apologise to me in your blogs for not including content orientated towards me. It’s YOUR blog, I read it just ’cause I like to know what ya’ll are up too.

    How’d your German go?

  3. blackbeardslog said,

    I tagged along along cos you pissed off and left them alone and benless so i had to step in. Besides, Chris wanted a knee to fondle and Max’s are too fat.

  4. Chris said,

    Safe face…..
    Where are you?! I’m tired! Where are you?!

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