2006 Apr 29
The other day, Mariko came home with a 12-pack of Budweiser. I asked her why she got that, and she said because it was cheap. I hadn’t had a Bud since… I can’t remember. I don’t think I have ever spent money on Budweiser. Anyways, I put one in the freezer to get it somewhat cold, and then took a swig. It was… well… Budweiser. Not very good. But, I drink some cheap beer sometimes. I remember my friends and I used to drink Lucky Lager because each bottle cap had a rebus on the bottom. And they had the little indention on the bottom of the bottles to aid you in opening your next one. It was an 11oz bottle. I think Tecate had that too, at least in Mexico. We also had our share of Miller High Life. Wow…
Anyways, at Costco the other day, I bought a case of Miller Lite. It’s sort of like the drinking water of beers. To counter my pantry full of cheap beer, I bought a 750ml bottle of Crown Royal.
Mariko and Bay are in Osaka for a couple weeks, so Koa and I are bachelors! Not sure what we are gonna do, but we’ll be ok. Today I am gonna make a big batch of spaghetti and meatballs. Koa, like most kids, loves pasta and noodles in general. We’re also going to get a haircut for him today. His hippie days are over.
2006 Apr 28
We have been enjoying our little Eclipse3 aquarium since last September, but there has been a steady stream of fish “moving on”, which has me wondering… And I never even find the dead body. I wonder if the plecostomus eats it? So far, we have lost one goldfish, four guppies and two plecostomus’ (plecostomi?). The only two we currently have is a goldfish (which we originally bought the tank for) and a plecostomus. That goldfish is so strong, I don’t think anything will do him in. Anyways, the tank is getting kind of dirty, so I am gonna clean it out this weekend.
2006 Apr 27
Aren’t those signs on the backs of the Sparkletts Water trucks cool? They have been around forever. From a distance, they seem to employ some kind of hybrid sequin-dress technology. Reminds me of Sea World for some strange reason. I think some of the backdrops at the shamu show used that same technology.
I have been watching and listening to a lot of podcasts lately, many of them are of the homemade type, hosted and created by amateur broadcasters. I think it’s pretty cool that people are doing this, but it has made me notice the difference between a professionally trained host and a DIY host. If you listen to professional newscasters, they have a certain way of talking, which, while annoying at times, is so formulaic and generic that it isn’t so grating. I guess it’s predictable and comfortable. They don’t have any extreme quirks or mannerisms that “get old” after a while.
A couple of the amateur podcasts I have watched/listened to have become so annoying that I have unsubscribed from them, or cannot listen to for more than 10 minutes. One podcast that I initially enjoyed, but eventually couldn’t take anymore, is Geekbrief TV, hosted by, Cali Lewis. I like her, but her style is overly cute and bouncy. I mean, her giggling and smiling are just too much to take for very long. Sometimes it almost seems ingenuine, but I am probably wrong about that. Maybe I am too conditioned to the robot-like demeanors of the big-name reporters. and the genuine personalities just seem innappropriate for the tv/radio format? That may be it.
Another thing that I can’t stand is when the hosts are constantly laughing and goofing off. When I listen to the Gamers With Jobs podcast, I sometimes skip the first segment because there is just too much laughing and not enough substance. It wouldn’t be so bad if the laugh was a quick chuckle, but it is usually a drawn-out, high-pitched type that makes me wish my iPod had a 5-second skip feature. Sure, they are having fun, but it’s like you are a stranger listening into a conversation between friends, which is filled with inside jokes and backstory that you just aren’t privy to. Thankfully, the Gamers With Jobs podcast is structured so that they keep that free-form, just-between-friends conversation limited for the most part to the first segment, and subsequently get to the meat of the program, which is gaming. From then on, the podcast is excellent, one of my favorites. Very smart show!
I guess this post has gone from it’s original intent of comparing professional and amateur broadcasts, to podcast reviews… So let’s just continue with the reviews in future posts, being that I am such a lame writer and can’t structure a simple blog post and stick to topic! Let me just finish this post by saying that even though I can’t stand certain parts of the podcasts I mentioned, I think it is great that people are actually putting the effort in to make them and that they are an awesome form of communication and entertainment. My tastes are just… well… particular.
2006 Apr 26
After a couple months of having no cable/satellite television access, we finally got our DishNetwork service installed again. This time, in addition to TV Japan, we got a DVR receiver. For those of you who don’t know, the DVR is a Digital Video Recorder that uses a hard drive to store shows digitally, which you can then playback at any time. My friend Mikey has been enjoying his TiVo for a while now, and Ryan has his DVR thru TimeWarner, and both of them seem to love it. So, Mariko and I decided to pay the extra money and get a DVR for ourselves. Let me tell you, it is awesome! It’s so easy to record shows, and set up “Timers” that will automatically record episodes of your favorite programs. Right now I have it set up to record Baseball Tonight, GlobeTrekkers
, Bonds on Bonds, Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, and Gardening By The Yard for myself, a bunch of cooking and gardening shows for Mariko, and Inaiinai-ba!
and Okaasan to Ishoo
on TV Japan
for Bay and Koa.
2006 Apr 25
I love saltines. I buy a big box of Premium saltines from Costco and munch on them at work. I always get the regular salted type, but occasionally one of the packets of crackers inside the box is either the unsalted or “low sodium” varieties. That really sucks. I can’t stand those, unless I am putting something on the crackers to give it some flavor, such as peanut butter or sardines (mmmm!). I can’t believe quality control is so bad that one of the 10 packets is the wrong kind. There must be some sinister reason why they are doing this…
2006 Apr 24
Check www.dodgerblues.com and roll your mouse over the Photo Fun graphic on the right side…
One of the podcasts that I keep on my iPod (tagged with “do not auto-delete") is Inside Guide: Koh Samui
, hosted by Vivien Tan
. It’s a video guide to the Thai island of Koh Samui
, and it is so relaxing and tranquil that it is the perfect thing to watch as you drift off to sleep. Plus the host of the show is “enchanting”.
Tropical vacations in Southeast Asia are so fantastic. Mariko and I went to Redang Island
in Malaysia for a vacation once, and it was so awesome! The food was super-oishii, and the scuba diving was incredible. I can’t wait to visit the region again.