Wednesday, March 29, 2006


Scarlett Johansson tops a lovely list of the "100 Sexiest Women in the World," in a poll of readers by FHM magazine.

"One of the best things for a woman to hear is that she is sexy," the 21-year-old actress, star of "Match Point" and "Lost in Translation," said in a statement. "I'd like to thank FHM's readers for the huge compliment."

Angelina Jolie is No. 2 on the list, followed by Jessica Alba, Jessica Simpson, Keira Knightley, Halle Berry, Jenny McCarthy, Maria Sharapova, Carmen Electra and Teri Hatcher.

Johansson ranked ninth on last year's list. Jolie was No. 1.

"It's remarkable how Scarlett Johansson has caught the attention of our readers," said Scott Gramling, the magazine's U.S. editor in chief, in a statement. "Her sultry voice and striking beauty certainly have a lot to do with that, but so does the confidence she exudes."

"She seems to be one of those women who would be equally at ease on the red carpet as she would just hanging out with the guys."

The magazine's May issue goes on sale April 4. (source)

About freaking time! If I ever cared much for the idea of a religion, I'd have started one for this goddess. Glamour does her career good but underneath all that glitter lies a less pretty yet more attractive nymph.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

less is more

Recently I keep hearing sleeping less is good for you. If that's ture I might be among the healthiest.

My car, company-owned, has put me through iron tests of patience. Mechanical failures, flat, dead battery, worn-out tires and gears, funny smell and noises, and countless little mishaps. I'm just glad being in an area this rural the problems are much more approachable. Common sense might indicate otherwise, but folks around here help me out a great deal.

I started swiftly jogging down thoughts that come to mind when I am occupied with something else. I hope it helps me remember more of the few original ideas that often die a premature death.

March 2006 marks the beginning of a fourth year in Iraq and myself in Japan. The day the U.S. declared a full blown war was a day I remember with disturbing clarity being in a Bensonhurst laundromat one last time dragging damp clothes from the dryer complaining how they had gotten more expensive and at the same time hitting on that East European chick who worked there part-time. Miraculously we still keep loosely in touch but her no longer there and me no longer articulate through, thigh, and three with that on again off again Brooklyn accent. Maybe I never really had it down but my buddies from yesteryears in Kings seem to disagree. I loathe those streets as much as they're missed, with intensity.

Monday, March 27, 2006

political compass

This is mine:

Economic Left/Right: -4.88
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -3.03

Get your own political compass here.

multiverse in your mind?

Do nearly exact copies of you exist in other universes? If one or more of the multiverse hypotheses is correct, then quite possibly they do. In the above computer-enhanced illustration, independent universes are shown as independent circles or spheres. Spheres may be causally disconnected from all other spheres, meaning no communications can pass between them. Some spheres may contain different realizations of our universe, while others may have different physical laws. An entire set of parallel universes is called a multiverse. The human eye might represent the possibility that realizations of some multiverse hypotheses might only exist in the human mind. One criticism of multiverse hypotheses is that they are frequently difficult to test. Some multiverse hypotheses may therefore be great fun to think about but not practically falsifiable and therefore have no predictive scientific value.

...for now (source)

Friday, March 24, 2006

Ikkoku Kan (一刻館)

Just now I'd spent over 40 hours to conclude a feeling left hanging more than 15 years ago. I rushed through the entire series of 96 half-hour episodes of Maison Ikkoku (めぞん一刻) in a week. First aired on Fuji TV in 1986, MI is one of those animes that the protagonist is a guy you root for from the get-go all the while wanting to punch in the neck*, especially when a story is as long as this one (spanning seven years).

I've waited since 1989 for Kyoko Otonashi (音無 響子) and Yusaku Godai (五代 裕作) to finally be together. (yume ja... nai...)

Some fans are crazy enough to come up with the floor plans for the house. And here are some pics of possible real locations illustrated in MI.

*such found in Kimagure Orange Road (きまぐれオレンジ☆ロード) 1987-88, The Super Dimension Fortress Macross (超時空要塞マクロス) 1982-83, etc.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

universal truth

British male drivers waste nearly six million hours a year lost on the road because they are reluctant to ask for directions. read


Monday, March 13, 2006

one of those days

Three in a row. It's like a girl who cries too much. You begin to not notice it, "oh yeah, did you?" Getting too used to things that leave a striking first impression? Numbly so?

Fukuoka Auto Salon '06

This site has got the best pics I've found:
The cars 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
The girls 1 2 3 4 5 "best"

Tokyo Auto Salon '06

I found these nice pics of the less scantily clad booth girls. Not that they offend me in anyway but I thought these girls look classier. TAS's eye candy is almost always more impressive than the actual show. (more)

Auto Salon 2006 Japan is:

Jan 13-15 in Tokyo (actually Chiba)
Feb 17-19 in Fukuoka
May 27-28 in Sapporo

What was worth a look:

from Nissan

Fairlady Z version ST Type G; Fairlady Z RS Concept

XANAVI NISMO Z; Fairlady Z S-tune

from Subaru

IMPREZA WRX STI spec C Gr-N 2006; WRX STI spec C V-Limited 2005 Tuned by ARAI

IMPREZA WRC2006 Prototype; BTZ-601R (ゼロスポーツ)

As you may or may not know Auto Salon is about the tuners, not really manufacturers. And they hand out the awards for the best tuned vehicles. Here is a list: click.

Tuners of note: RE 雨宮; BLITZ; Top Secret, etc. (full list)

Official site: Auto Salon

As my hands get tired from posting the pictures which are harder to find cars than booth babes I'll link you to these awesome pics instead: 1, 2, 3. To be honest I think the TAS has got a few too many wagons/vans, not exactly my cup of tea.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

hard to see

Ground-based astronomy may be almost impossible by 2050 as global warming causes a dramatic increase in cloud cover.

Clouds and aircraft condensation trails, or contrails, already hamper astronomy, says Gerry Gilmore, an astronomer at the University of Cambridge. Worries about cloud cover prompted a study, which Gilmore chaired, to look into how global warming and rising air traffic will affect the forthcoming 100-metre-wide Overwhelmingly Large Telescope in Chile. This is one of a planned series of extremely large telescopes designed to observe the skies in unprecedented detail. (read more)

Friday, March 10, 2006


Roger Dodger (2002)
The opening boggles the mind. But from there on things go a slightly different way. A little less intellectual but almost equally amusing. Great acting and some more.

Broken Flowers (2005)
A financially sucessful man goes on a trip to examine his earlier love life. Murray is his typical self. I just wish Julie Delpy had more of a role. I think it's fair to say the soundtrack makes this movie.

Howl's Moving Castle (2004)
Miyasaki's artwork is there (or more accurately, his direction of artwork style); his soul not. Fascinating entertainment seriously lacking depth. One could only wish. Six point five still for sheer visual stunts and creativity.

The I Inside (2003)
A brilliant little film. open mind needed. I couldn't care less about Ryan Phillippe but he does a decent job in this movie.

Crash (2004)
Very good and easier to understand movie trying to deal with a certain helplessness and deep-rooted prejudice. Movies like this need to reach a larger audience so it does what it's supposed to. It's literally not just black and white, the world is full of situations where values get stuck inbetween those two. Some fairly flawed plotlines. But worth a closer look.

The Girl in the Café (2005)
An interesting enough movie that talks about love and poverty. Well acted leads. The rest of it was tried but failed, just barely. Enjoyable. The somber tone with hints of cheerfulness works for me.

Melinda and Melinda (2004)
This Woody Allen's piece feels nothing more than a fully developed student film that shines a special light on the issues it discusses. Now, for a student, it'd be a great accomplishment. But coming from a master it only deserves a 6.5. The concept can't be simpler. It's up to the audience to grasp the depth of the theme. Or, it'd still be a great Sunday afternoon couch warmer.

Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
I fought myself for a long while to put this one on 7+ or 6.5. It's a wonderful film, but seeing it after it was first released three years ago when I instantly wanted to see it but never got around to, spoiled it for me. I came to expect a bit too much. And then again I might be wrong. I'll probably give it a second viewing in a couple of years and if I like it better then I will bring it higher up my list.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005)
Good coming-of-age movie for girls. I am not part of the target demographic, so I will try to be as impartial as possible. Judging from the movie and what other users have said about the two, go see the movie, then read the books. They are claimed to be much better. I really like positive teenager movies. It's so tough being a teenager, but people, mostly your own family, just don't appreciate it. Everybody should learn how to cry over and learn from her mistakes/pain, better when she has someone to do it with.

Closer (2004)
It leaves you thinking, mostly because seeing these likeable real life actors and the shitheads they play makes me sick. They all do such a good job which makes them real. Portman is sloppy at times. Law's Alfie (2004) came to mind, even though the two characters share very little in common. I like Portman so much but this movie she's the least good of the four.

(6.5 is the score I'd give on if half a point is allowed. 7 to me is a very good movie, so 6.5 is getting close but being a hair of a line short)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006


Bright afternoon sun in this allergy season with just a tiny hint of pollens in the air makes it a good sewing day. I have these pants, Ralph Lauren military pant monty cargo to be exact, that I can't seem to give up. I must have had them for eight years judging from the wears and tears. Fixing the tears in them relaxes me a great deal. Coffee loungh music helps tremendously. My first serious sewing job this is. I've been wearing them with obvious holes in strange places. To show you my handy skills, or lack there of, here is a pic of the sewn crotch previously called the breathingroom. None of the flies work except the zipper in the front (thank god!) There were a total of 17 holes before stitching some in. When I first bought them from a discount store I never thought they'll last this long and accompany me through ups and downs. These are my and my only traveling pants. I vow to keep them as long as their threads stay intact. They've spanned the entire US East Coast, parts of Canada, nearly all of Japan, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Thailand.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

infinite spinning

Seems like the truth of the world in physics prespectives at least to some extent going down one random trail of many theorists' forks is an infinite number of layers of spinning matter, from as basic as subatomic particles in quantum mechanics or as radical as vibrating strings to as large as the universe itself which spins or mega-orbits around a core of superexistence with formerly thought to be parallel universes, which are looking less and less likely to be parallel at all.

Broken Flowers OST a great selection if you are in a mellow sunlit coffee shop mood. I wish there was one around here where I can drink that occasional cup of coffee alongside some readings.

1. There Is An End - The Greenhornes
2. Yegelle Tezeta - Mulatu Astatke
3. Ride Your Donkey - The Tennors
4. I Want You - Marvin Gaye
5. Yedermo Sew - Mulato Astatke
6. Not If You Were The Last Dandy On Earth - Brian Jonestown Massacre
7. Tell Me Now So I Know - Holly Golightly
8. Gubelye - Mulatu Astatke
9. Dopesmoker - Sleep
10. Requiem, Op.48 (Pie Jesu) - Oxford Camerata
11. Ethanopium - Dengue Fever
12. Unnatural Habitat - The Greenhornes

an eternal struggle

1. The more one knows the steeper the learning curve.

2. Social interaction of any kind gets in the way of thinking time. One minute away for doing things that one's supposed to do to funtion as a member of the society is one minute less of thinking time, which might contribute to the society that keeps it from achieving just that.

Why do you think those before us shut themselves in a mental cocoon?