In light of the tragedy in Kansas yesterday, I decided to post this a day earlier than I originally planned. Martin Richard wrote the message for a school project a year before he was killed along with two others at the Boston Marathon Bombing last year. The same blast that killed Martin robbed his little sister of a leg along with over 150 others. Four days later, Shawn Coulier’s death would herald the beginning of the end of the largest manhunt on U.S. Soil ever.
As many of you might remember, I wrote a couple blogs during that week:
As David Ortiz so bluntly put it, this is OUR city. If come into Boston looking to cause trouble, the price will be steep. Boston has moved in since then on more ways than one. The people of Boston elected a new mayor and a new Police Commissioner is in charge. The people of Boston refuse to let what happened last year define this city just like the people of New York refuse to let the events of 9/11 define their city and so on.
Regarding yesterday’s tragedy, Love is powerful but so is Hate. Hate drove a disturbed young man to kill 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary two years ago. What happened at the Boston Marathon is another example of what Hate can drive a person to do. As is the Westboro Baptist Church.
I could go on and on.
In light of the recent string of mass killings and nationally televised acts of violence, I think it’s important for that we use these incidents as teachable moments. It’s said alot but it is the best way to show those with evil intentions they failed: Just go back to your normal routine.
I’m sure the conspiracy theorists have their own ideas but as I’ve said a few times now, I’m not a conspiracy theory. Nor do I associate myself with people who like to entertain baseless conspiracy theories.
I recently realized that I conquered fear itself a few weeks ago. How? By simply ackowledging the things that used to make me afraid. Once I did that, I no longer had a reason to fear anything. I’m sure my perception of that will change when I start a family of my own but as of right now, I can say with all honestly I literally fear nothing. Notice what I did and didn’t say. I never said that I’ll look for an excuse to throw my life away. At the same time, no human can say they hold any sort of power over my emotions.
I have my time in City Year and at The Mission Hill School to thank for that but that’s just speaking for me.
Given the massive range of topics I’ve blogged about for almost two years, it might surprise you to know there are a few things I’ve sworn to never talk about in more than necessary detail. I’ve eluded to some but never fully explained why.
As I’ve said to some friends at work, the blogs give me a sense of purpose just as the stories and fanfics provide a constructive outlet for my creative thought process. Having said that, I knew when I first started blogged on Xanga a bit over 10 years ago (I was in high school when I made my Xanga account) there were certain things I should never touch for one reason or another.
Update 4/11/2014: For those who read my post on Facebook a short time ago, see #2.
Now I’m going to tell you what those topics are and why I avoid talking about them on my blogs:
- Theism vs. Atheism/Creative Design vs. Evolution: Honestly, it’s not because I’m a Theist who believes the world was created in 7 literal days that I don’t want to talk about this on my blogs. It’s just too divisive to have a cohesive discussion on it with the predominatly self-professed atheiests of the internet world. There’s also the fact Theists have historically demonstrated over and over again the inability to agree to disagree with a viewpoint different from their own. I can make a blog post in and of itself on this ALONE so…yeah.
- My Family’s Issues: I admit this was something I considered fair game until last spring. A couple years ago, I held back on some of the stuff I used to say on Facebook after I became aware members of my immediate family was reading it and immediatelt jumping to their own conclusions. As I said on Facebook a short time ago, one of my sisters proved to me she’s not someone I can trust not to run to the family with some of the stuff I post on Facebook and WordPress. Not that I’m gonna let that knowledge stop me. I’ll just be more obvious about it.
- Work-Related Issues: I’ve seen the news enough times to know not to say anything I know I shouldn’t say on my blogs or Facebook. Obvious student privacy rights aside, there’s also the fact many of my coworkers and parents of Mission Hill students follow me on Facebook and by extension, WordPress. To those who may have been secretly hoping I’d air dirty laundry on my blog on the side, you can forget it. Me wanting to keep my job aside, it’s just common sense. If there is an issue involving me and another member of the MHS community or two members of the MHS community that I’m aware of, I don’t talk about it with those not directly involved. It’s not just MHS policy but it’s MY policy first and foremost. I also don’t want to inadvertantly be responsible for unnecessary drama at work. I’ve had my fill of that on various internet forums over the last 16 years.
- How to Pirate Copyrighted Material: Given I just published two books in the last week this should come as no surprise. Do I know how to pirate stuff? Sure. Do I know how to pirate stuff and cover my tracks? Absolutely. For the kind of audiences my blogs attract I’ve decided for myself those who really want to pirate stuff don’t need any help from me and I REALLY don’t need to piss off the Anime and Video Game Industries.
- My Mental Wellbeing: This goes with #2 more or less: What goes on in my head is my business alone. The only people who I feel need to know will know. My sanity was established 13 years ago after I said something stupid in high school (more on that coming in the book this summer, hehe). There’s also the fact I’ve been deceiving my immediate family for 20 years and unfortunately for them, by the time they realize the “why” part it’ll be too late for them to apologize. No, I’m not planning anything violent or self-destructive. I just hate internet drama and when the parties involved are family members or at the very least can see each other everyday, it needs to stay the fuck off the internet.
Aside from that, the above are off-limits in terms of what I WILL NOT talk about on ANY of my blogs. I don’t have a problem disclosing that fact some of my other internet identities are Victor Bravo and Kevin Tyler. I don’t have a problem saying at the end of the day, I have a long-standing disregard for authority figures. When you’ve been treated the way I have your entire life by literally every single person you’ve ever known, after a while why bother? Those authority figures I do trust know who they are so I see no reason to go down the list of authority figures I do and don’t trust here.
You have to earn it with me. There’s more I’d like to say on the subject but I’m saving it for the book. I will say anything I post online I am prepared to be held accountable for. That’s not an unreasonable expectation. Think I’m unstable? You’re entitled to your OPINION =D
I wouldn’t have believed if it if I didn’t just see it myself on the WWE Network. Honestly, I never thought The Streak would end, least of all to Brock Lesnar. Being a Company Guy, ‘Taker can decide if The Streak ends and against who. The boys and girls on Gamefaqs’ Pro Wrestling: WWE Board are already calling it ‘Taker’s last match or second to last match. I think it’s far too soon to make that kind of call though The Phenom IS 48 years old. For the last five years the only match he’s done a year is Wrestlemania. It’s one thing when you’re doing 1-2 matches a week but it’s another when you only do one match a year.
Again: This is The Undertaker we’re talking about. As far as the WWE’s concerned, ‘Taker’s dedication to the company during The Attitude Era and by extension the Monday Night Wars earned him the right to do prettymuch whatever he wants. Having said that, The Streak ending automatically releases him from having to compete at Wrestlemania if he doesn’t want to anymore. He’s also said on the record that he’s interested in working with Daniel Bryan.
Honestly, I think it would have been better if The Streak fell to John Cena as two Company Guys. Oh, well. it is what it is.
Notice I used the word “find” and not “get” in the same sentance. One does not simply GET or FIND a girl/boy friend. You have to do both. I also wanted to be specific so instead of using the words “good”, “great” or “perfect” (all of which come later) I used the word “KIND”.
Most folks would usually take this moment to give a shopping list of things they would and would not prefer. In my case, I would prefer not have a girlfriend who:
- Drinks, smokes and/or uses drugs.
- Has a Dependancy, Superiority or Inferiority complex.
- Is in debt.
- Recently or trying to come of an abusive, complicated or difficult relationship.
- Is close-minded.
- Is a bigot.
- Is very impatient.
- Doesn’t have a diagnosed (or undiagnosed!) intellectual impairment or disability.
That’s it prettymuch. Everything else I could think of falls into one of those categories. As for the last one, this is one area I absolutely DO NOT want to have in common with my significant other. I have a couple intellectual disabilities myself and that’s more than enough for me.
In terms of preferences, for me it’s as long as they do not fit into any of the above categories. In terms of physical appearance, I prefer a person’s natural beauty. Otherwise you have an inferiority complex in my book. By that I mean not wearing makeup or not dressing formally all the time makes you feel insecure due to external factors and/or tradition(s).
In terms of age, between 21 and 35. I just turned 30 on Sunday so…yeah. I just don’t want to be in a serious relationship with someone older than my youngest aunt (she’s 33 in case you’re wondering). In terms of commitment level, I’d prefer something long-term. I’ve had my fill of short-term relationships with members of my own family so…yeah. Consistency would make for a nice change.
If it gets to that point later on, I’m open to having kids either naturally or through adoption. Having said that, I’ll be able to tell right away if I’m being used as part of a lovers’ quarrel. If that is indeed the case, forget we ever met. This is also why I put the condition for no wanting someone in a complicated relationship. I’ve got my own problems, after all XD
That’s prettymuch it.
Before someone asks HELL NO I DO NOT USE INTERNET DATING SITES! THEY RARELY WORK!
It’s also been statistically proven the people who use dating sites (Match.com, Monster, Christian Singles, etc.) have unrealistic expectations. Either that or it’s folks using these sites to either have Cyber Sex or to spam their Livecams. One or the other.
So don’t even think about asking me to try a dating site. I already did when I was still in City Year and these sites set won’t allow direct communication without a subscription.
…Besides, I think it’s more effective to just sell yourself (no pun intended, LOL) on You Tube =D
That’s the word I would use to describe Saturday and Sunday.
I’m doing both Saturday and Sunday in a single blog post for multiple reasons. The first being all I did Saturday Night was the Swap Meet and my own panel. Man, it was AWESOME! I’ll talk about it in the more detailed recap blog post but it was BOSS. I’m talking about the panel I did, mind you =D
I’ll give you the cliffnotes from Saturday night first, though:
I got to Forest Hills station only to realize I forgot my Convention Badge (WOOPS!). I hailed a cab and booked it back to my house to get it. The round trip cost me nearly half of my earnings from the night before but in my book, it was a small price to pay to both get the badge AND significantly cut my commute through Hyde Park from Forest Hills Station to my house and back to just 7 minutes total. Compare that to my usual 30 minute commute to and from work XD
Anyway, when I got to the convention center I grabbed a sandwich from the Prudential Center’s food court and then immediately booked it to Panel A for my Persona 4 panel. I’ll go into detail in terms of what went on at the panel in a separate blog post but let’s just say a smaller room would’ve been better. I was expecting a smaller room than the one I got for this panel but since it was a replacement panel, it was out of my hands.
After the panel ended, I racked up villagers in my Bravely Default Demo on my Blue 3DS (I have the full game on my Red one) in preparation for when I get the full game on Friday from the eShop. I then headed home and got to Cleary Square just before the MBTA shut down (LOL!).
Sunday was alot busier since I had two panels to with a one hour break in between. Upon arriving, I hauled it over to room 206, which is where I did my Clannad Panel. I’ll speak more about this is the recap blog post itself but I was joined a very special guest:
Yes, Nagisa Furukawa was my co-panelist this year.
For the details on how I pulled it off, you’ll have to wait for the recap blog either tonight or Thursday evening.
After my Clannad blog, I booked it to The Dealers’ Room where I picked up the first four volumes of Blue Exorcist as well as Volume 1 of the spinoff Manga Attack of Titan Junior High, which is a spinoff of the international smash hit Attack on Titan. I also got a Yukiko Amagi (Persona 4) and a Kirito (Sword Art Online) plushie. I go them from two different vendors but in both cases they were the last ones left. After that I bought Fate/Zero DVD set, which is an Anime I saw bits and pieces of on Neon Alley recently.
I then booked it over to room Panel C to prepare for my second panel of the day. When I arrived, I was blown away to see the HUGE line outside the door that snaked down the hall. Of course, Court Records: Ace Attorney was Sunday’s main event in more ways than one. The first two sections of the room were filled and like last year, the Cosplayers came in force. Even though it was 90 minutes it was just barely enough to do everything. Come next year I’ll be looking to outdo myself for the third year in a row.
After the panel ended I went back to The Dealers’ Room where I picked up Attack on Titan: Before the Fall, a prequel to Attack on Titan that takes place 100 years before the start of the original series. I then went to Closing Ceremonies where I racked up so many Streetpasses on both of my 3DS consoles I’m surprised they didn’t break (LOL!). It was announced that the theme for Anime Boston 2015 will be Manju vs. Mecha and that it will be April 3-5, 2015.
Save the date!
All in all, it was an awesome weekend. I eagerly look forward to doing it again next year. I’ll even tell you a full year in advance which panels I will be doing at AB2015 and which ones I will not. Pending approval, of course.
- Clannad: The Place Where Wishes Come True WILL be back next year. Also, Nagisa will be my copanelist from now on each year I do this panel. It will also be 90 minutes next year because of some extra content I’m bringing next year including some special videos that I promise will leave none unmoved.
- Court Records: Ace Attorney will NOT be back next year since I want to make room for following panel. It will be back at AB2016 though.
- Pokemon: 20 Years Later is the special 2-hour panel I will be doing next year. I’m pulling out all the stops to make it the most must-see panel of AB2015. There will be music from the soundtracks of each gen, The PokeRap, Battles (Gens 5 and 6), Trades (Gens 5 and 6), a viewing of the very first episode of Pokemon: Indigo League and a special viewing of a scene from the world famous banned Electric Soldier Porygon episode! It will be the biggest panel I will have ever done. Bring your own 3DS!
- Tales of Symphonia: 10 Years Later is the panel I was supposed to do this year but didn’t due to my busy work schedule during the last 4 months. We will discuss the fandom, the game, the anime and so on. I will request 60 minutes for what is sure to be an interesting introspective into Tales of Symphonia.
- Persona 4: Pursuing My True Self WILL be back next year. It will be 60 minutes long just like this year but there will be a bit more of a focus on the Psychology of the Persona. Video clips will return but I will use different clips from the ones I used this year.
- Panels: Best Practices is a new 60 minute Workshop I’m planning to do next year. In the panel, we will discuss the process of applying to do a panel, planning what you’re going to do and (hopefully) running a successful panel. Much of the panel will be answering questions and feedback from the audience so if you’ve ever wondered what it takes to be a panelist, it’s worth checking out. Bring a pencil and notebook. You might learn something helpful ^_^
There you have it.
So to recap there will be two returning panels, two special panels and a workshop for next year. Man, it’s going to be AWESOME next year!
If you’re reading this from Facebook, I will post the recaps for my panels next over the next few days. If you were in the crowd and want to give a shout out, feel free =O
I wasn’t originally planning to include this in my recap but for the sake of being transparent, I am.
Just before Opening Ceremonies, I met a 17-year old kid and his father who had come to Anime Boston from Minneapolis for the convention. My personal policy of not hanging out with teens with intellectual disabilities or disorders outside work aside, I ended up spending most of my day playing babysitter to the kid. In reference to the Intellectual Disabilities comment the kid and his Dad let me know right off the bat he has Asberger’s Syndrome, which is on the Autism spectrum. I myself have Pervasive Developmental Disorder, which is also on the Autism spectrum.
If I were 10 years yonger it wouldn’t have been a problem for me to spend the day with him but when his Dad prettymuch tried to hand him off to me, immediately the warning bells went off in my head. While I would be the first to say people with Asberger’s teach more than they learn from others, this was a situation in which it was obvious I was being used to split father and son for the day. The kid was adamant about doing things he knew his parents wouldn’t approve of (which I won’t get into since I never gave him the opportunity to do anything stupid) once his Dad left, coulsn’t make it more obvious he couldn’t wait to get away from his son.
After Opening Ceremonies, I took them to Wagamama and split with them there. More than a few times the kid’s Dad tried to take off on us, which confirmed for me I needed to avoid them at all cost. My luck was not that good: I later ran into them just inside the Bolyston Street entrance of the Hynes 90 minutes before the Swap Meet was scheduled to start. The kid’s Dad prettymuch dumped him off on me again and quickly left for their hotel in Revere.
The sweet, sweet irony is tonight I’m doing a Panel about Persona 4 and the Psychology of Persona.
Let’s just say I reverted to my 15 year old self during the times I was alone with him. Perhaps more attributed to The Good Work I’ve been doing for 10 years now, I have the ability of being able to connect with anyone regardless of the circumstances. It’s what I do. Anyway, we hung out for a while at the UNOs on Bolyston Street before heading back to the convention center. While we were at UNOs the kid opened up to me about his and his Dad’s relationship issues along with other stuff that don’t need to be disclosed over the internet. I will say it reminded me of my own struggles, especially in recent months.
When we got back to the convention center we went to the Swap Meet which is where we parted ways. Before he left, I gave him my extra Charlie Card with $6 on it so that he could get back to his hotel safely. After he left, I felt very angry most of my day had been wasted. I wasn’t angry with the kid but I was angry with his Dad.
What the fuck kind of person would willingly hand their 17 year old son with Asberger’s to a complete stranger?
Excuse my choice of words but I was that pissed off. The kid was candid about wanting to do things he knew his parents would not approve of (which again, I will not discuss since I never allowed him the opportunity to do anything stupid) even if he didn’t have Asberger’s and I made it clear to both of them I would have no part in any shenanigans. When you think about it, anything could have happened in which case the parent would have been on the hook even if the son was 21. If I run into them this evening, I’m going to let his Dad have it. If he didn’t want to spend time with him, he shouldn’t have brought him to the convention or at the very least left him with friends he knew.
Moving on, now:
That aside, I knew from the convention schedule I probably wasn’t going to see any panels of interest to me today so I spent a huge chunk of time finishing my Persona 4 Power Point.
I am pleased to say it is DONE. It will be glorious, too =D
During some downtime I headed into the Dealer’s Room to take a look around. The owner of Comicopia (their store is in Kenmore Square) told me the reason he brings so much Manga to Anime Boston is because he has more space in his booth than his entire store. Anyone who’s been to the actual store knows this is true XD
I was THRILLED to see Game Underground was there. They were the only dealers aside from VideoGamesNewYork who were there who sold video games though. I did find Super Mario Advance 2 and Golden Sun for the Game Boy Advance, though (WOOT!) for $15 each.
At another vendor I bought Ouran High School Host Club on Blu-Ray for $40, making it the third Anime I bought on Blu Ray since I bought my PS3. The first was of course Persona 4 while Fullmetal Panic: The Second Raid was my second. Due to a low spending budget I was only able to buy one Anime this year.
Then the Swap Meet happened =O
My mantra going into the Swap Meet was “Leave with far less than I go in with”. In that regard I succeeded. I even made $75, which was twice what I knew I was going to make at the Swap Meet. Here is a picture of what I left the Swap Meet with:
…As a reminder I also made $75 after the Swap Meet with some of my leftover inventory.
Of the stuff I got, I’m only keeping the Bleach Manga, Bettlejuice DVD and Kiddy Grade DVD set. The rest will be swapped tonight along with my leftovers from yesterday and some more stuff I’m bringing today. The glove is awesome but sadly it’s too small to fit my hand so…yeah.
As for new Manga buys, I’m holding off on that until Sunday. Not just because of Comicopia’s obscene blowout deals but I’m expecting $9650 to appear in my bank account between today and tomorrow. I’ll talk more about my perspective new buys on my Anime & Manga Blog.
The Programming Guide is here.
The Dealers’ Room Listing is here.
To see my panels, scroll down to the bottom of the page. The second link will give you external links to sites of all of the vendors who will be at AB2014 this year.
Of the returning vendors I’m familiar with:
- Comicopia is great for all your Manga needs. A protip I’ve made sure to exploit for the last two years now: Save your Manga shopping for Sunday when all their stock is marked down even more than advertised. 20% off for 4 volumes becomes 40%, 40% off for 8 volumes becomes 60% and so on. On top of that an additional 10% is taken off all three days if you buy volumes in bulk from the same series. Comicopia is located in Kenmore Square, which is a 10 minute walk from Back Bay =O
- VideoGamesNewYork is a ripoff. If you want a better deal on video games, you’re better off going elsewhere. The specialize in selling Japanese imports but honestly, you can get the same stuff for less eslewhere.
- Game Underground sells retro games. I bought some Nintendo DS games from these guys at AB2013. The prices are reasonable and they have bundled deals as well.
- Crunchyroll is actually a streaming service like Netflix only they specialize in steeaming Japanese Anime (subbed) and Korean Dramas. F0r $6 a month you can stream it through Xbox 360/One, PS3/PS4, Vita, iOS and/or Android Devices.
I would reccommend bringing a bottle of Hand Sanitizer with you and using it after handling stuff so you don’t have germs on your hands for too long. Who knows how many folks picked up that display copy of Attack on Titan Volume 9, yes?
This year, the Swap Meet will be in a a larger room compared to the last few years. Since I’m not running a panel on Saturday night this year (WOOT!) I’m going to be able to go for the entire duration of the Swap Meet. The Swap Meet is a trading post in a nutshell. Folks go there with stuff to trade with other folks with stuff to trade and sell for good and/or cash. I prefer cash personally =O
It all starts this Thursday at 4:00PM. It’s gonna be awesome!