I’m teaching again. First class was this past Saturday. The past 2 sessions in the fall and winter were pretty slow and I only had one class in each of them, but now this time I’ve got two classes. I’ve got a Anime Round 1 class with at least 5 people (and hopefully more should some tag-alongs decide to sign up), and enough people returned to take Round 3 to justify running it. So as far as my classes go, I’m doing all right, but the numbers for everyone are pretty low this time. Unfortunately a lot of people don’t actually sign up ahead of time, they just suddenly appear on the first day and expect to be taught. So we have no idea how things are going to go until the end of the day, and even then things can change. I think that we ultimately ended up doing ok, it’s just shame that we have to start off each session with a big question mark.

My Round 1 class seems like a really interesting bunch so far. I had a great time with them. Much more of an enthusiastic bunch then I typically get on the very first day. They asked a lot of questions and were really excited about being there and learning about anime. They seemed to really like me, so I’m looking forward to teaching them more.

When I was done teaching for the day, I went and bought a bunch of used games for the GameCube. $80 CDN got me 4 games, which is a pretty good deal where I’m standing. One of the games I got is Soul Caliber 2. Wow! This game freakin’ rocks! I can’t belive it’s taken me so long to play this game, but I’m glad I’m playing it now because I’m really enjoying it. And it doesn’t hurt that the girls in this game are really something else! Taki is one red hot ninja babe! Plus, it’s got Link! Link rules in this game. Speaking of Link, I also got the Legend of Zelda Collectors Set, with the 2 NES Zelda games and the 2 N64 Zelda Games on 1 disk. Aside from toying around a little back in the day, I’ve never really played them before, and I have no idea if I’ll ever bother to even play all the way through all 4 of those Zelda games, but since it wasn’t made to be sold in stores, it’s nice to have for the sake of posterity anyway.

So between my new classes, my new games, some new stuff I’m working on for the site, and a few other suprises, I’m finding ways of keeping myself pretty busy.


I’ve been getting a lot of spam from websites advertising online poker. The strange thing is that they keep coming through my contact page! It’s rather annoying when I get an e-mail that seems to be about my website and ends up being an obnoxious piece of spam trying to get me to gamble all my money away. But, from a certain standpoint, these e-mails are rather fascinating. Let’s take a look. Here some text that has the unenviable task of trying to convince me that playing poker on the Internet is something that I should be doing.

Do you know the origin of the famous brand Empire Poker? Let me explain it to you. Nowadays it is generally acknowledged fact that the game of poker appeared in ancient Rome. The notorious emperor Caligula was a famous gambler. But at those times they played for slaves as chips were invented many centuries after the fall of the Roman Empire.
Wow! How enlightening! The connection to slavery really makes me want to play poker! Then I can be just like Caligula!

Here’s another one. This one is awesome. Taste the ENGRISH!

The super path to begin to get true real money is come onto free poker NOW! free poker the really best rest time thousands-player poker, live, whole day without rest, whole week without time-out! free poker is very fast method to successful and pleasure. Hundreds fans communicate to free poker constantly.
Of course! The super path! The best rest time is to play thousands-player poker the whole day without rest! It makes perfect sense! It’s the very fast method to successful and pleasure, after all!

I don’t play poker. I’ve never played poker. I have no interest in poker. And I especially have no interest in giving any of my money to the Russian Mafia.


April 13, 2005

The Purist Propaganda.

I’m sure that I’ve said things like this before, but it bears repeating, ad nauseam if need be.

I am so tired of the whole “Purist” mentality that is so prevalent in just about every fandom these days. There are Star Wars fans who can’t go a day without telling everyone how much they hate the prequels and the Special Editions. I’ve encountered Ninja Turtles fans who constantly bring up how they dislike the childish nature of the original 80’s animated series and demand that everything be “dark and gritty” (the most overused cliche in the entire fandom). Them of course, there are the Transformers fans that must have everything exactly like G1 and act like they are owed having their every whim catered to by the people responsible. And you can pretty much take every novel, comic book, video game, movie, or TV show and find somebody in the fandom expressing their displeasure of how they can’t stand to see how their most favorite thing is being changed in order to be adapted into a novel, comic book, video game, movie, or TV show. Every fandom has them. It just never ends, and for the most part, absolutely nothing could ever be done to make these people happy.

I’m not going to say that these people shouldn’t have the right to feel the way they feel. In some cases they may even be justified. But for crying out loud, you don’t need to be an elitist bastard about it! Just because somebody refuses to acknowledge the “grotesque” existence of whatever sub-sect of their fandom they have such a big problem with, doesn’t mean they’re any better of a fan or a person than someone who doesn’t think it’s worth getting upset over, or, God forbid, actually might enjoy! In fact, when you get right down to it, if I like something that these so-called “purists” hate so much, then doesn’t that make me the bigger fan?

The worst thing is when there are jerks who act like their opinion is the one that everyone else has. It only seems that way because the people who are the most unhappy with whatever it is they are getting at the time are always the loudest and most obnoxious. So because so many of these loud and obnoxious people agree with each other, their opinion must be the right one! Sheesh. Meanwhile, the rest of us are fairly content to sit back and enjoy being fans, so we’ve got nothing to be upset about. Except, of course, when those jackasses go out of their way to insinuate that everyone agrees with their point of view and that anyone who doesn’t is an idiot. Then, as far as I’m concerned, it’s on. When I see something like that happen, I make it a point to make sure that their voice isn’t the only one that gets heard.

You know, if you’re going to proudly stick a label on yourself and call yourself a “purist”, then that’s fine. But for the sake of everybody else, please know when the time is right to just shut up about it. Go right ahead and like what you like with as narrow a field of view as you see fit, and leave the rest of us, the ones who actually have an open mind about things, alone.

Too many people seem to spend too much time hating what they don’t like and not enough time liking what they do like. What a miserable existence they must lead.


April 10, 2005

Adventures at Ad-Astra

Yesterday I went to Ad-Astra, a long running sci-fi and fantasy convention in Toronto. I had never been to this particular convention before, and normally I wouldn’t really go to a show like this, there were some special circumstances here. I got to hang out with some good friends who I don’t get to see very much, and I was also arranged to be given the distinction of helping out at the convention as a Stage Ninja for the Masquerade. Unfortunately I was stupid and forgot my camera at home, so that means no full report. If I get some pictures from the other folks, I’ll post them on the message board, but until then you’ll have to accept this scan of my convention badge as proof that I went to this convention and had a good time.

Ad Astra Badge

This was a smaller-scale convention than the ones I usually attend. There wasn’t a lot to buy that I was interested in. I did find some cool ninja-related pins though. The other Stage Ninjas bought some too for the occasion, but for me they will be day to day wear. I also bought these two Godzilla comics. Check out the one with all the blood! That’s so awesome.

Godzilla comicsGodzilla comics

As a Stage Ninja, I helped to set up and tear down elements of the stage. During the masquerade itself, my job, being a tall ninja and not a small ninja, was to be a “catcher“, essentially staying in front of the stage and catching anyone who accidentally took a spill over the edge (which was probably not even a foot off the ground, but whatever). Thankfully, nothing like that ever happened. But it was really cool to be so close to the action. If I had a chair, I’d have had one of the best seats in the house!

It was a fun masquerade. Pretty short when compared to the Anime North and National Expo Masquerades, but from what I understand there had been a dwindling interest in costuming at this convention over the years, but the people involved went out of their way to make costuming a bigger part of the convention this year, and so we surpassed our targeted number of masquerade entires by a wide margin. Way to go!

There were some amazing costumes, but I think that everyone’s favorite entry, by far, was the first entry in the juniors division. It was this tiny little boy, who couldn’t be much older than 3 years old, dressed as Neo from The Matrix. He got up stage and enthusiastically started doing kung-fu poses, having the absolute time of his life. Adorable.

Of course, the other duty of the Stage Ninja is, when a problem with the audio seems like it will delay the masquerade for awhile, the MC makes the call for “Ninja Dance!“. All the ninjas go up on stage and dance and act silly for the audience. Well there was a technical difficulty towards the end, and so I certainly did bust a move. There’s probably video of that somewhere.

Other than that, the day was mostly spent hanging around chatting with my friends, eating instant noodles, and helping people out when I was called upon. A great day, all in all, and I needed that. I’m glad I was there. The people want to get the same crew of ninjas together next year, so it looks like I’ll probably be going back again.


Yeah, so if you haven’t figured it out on your own by now, yesterday’s post was a complete fabrication. I made the whole thing up!


As if all that text being underneath the date of April 1st wasn’t enough of a give away, I inserted a few other Easter eggs. “Monkey401” is not a real person. The “401” in his name means April 1st. The e-mail I said he supposedly sent me was in fact written by me, and is essentially the written equivalent of an over-the-top campy actor hamming it up. Though I did try very hard to make it seem like an authentic idiot e-mail, like I do get from time to time, I purposely overplayed the part to have some more fun with it. Heh heh. Besides, everyone should know by now that I’d never get depressed over something like that. Come on, “stop waching POKEMAN and just go away u sick freak bcuz no1 caeres about stupdi crap anime drawnigns!“, That’s just hilarious!

The major clue comes from this sentence:

After opening this e-mail, I realize that life is too short to waste on things I enjoy like drawing and websites.”

You can see that a few letters seem arbitrarily bolded for no apparent reason. Well if you took those bold letters and stuck them together in the order which they appear, you’d get…


Besides that, it should be pretty obvious to anyone who’s been paying attention that I’d never seriously say a sentence like that.

It’s been real.” Yeah, right. I don’t talk like that either. Unless I’m being sarcastic.

Ahh yes, and then there was “Adios!” replacing my trademark “Sayonara“. By that point something should have seemed off and everyone should have known that I was just being silly.

So there you have it. The whole thing was just some dark humor on April Fools day, mostly at my own expense. To those who were not fooled, good for you! And to those who where upset about me not drawing anymore and shutting this place down, don’t worry. I’m not going away. I’m not taking my site down. I’m not going to stop drawing. I’m not going to stop watching POKEMAN. I’m never growing up. I’ll still be right here on SykoGrafix, drawing, colouring, writing my stuff, kicking ass, and making fun of stupid people from here until the end of time. Count on it.

Oh, and to anyone who was actually happy when I said that I was just going away, never to be seen again, this is all I have to say to you: