MORE RANDOM CRAP...ITEM! The other Saturday, I actually did go to the anime club the other weekend. They hadn't yet gotten a new video projector to replace the one that broke (forcing them to have the club meetings at someone's apartment, , but they were able to borrow one for at least that one meeting, and it wasn't an LCD projector, it was one of those older projectors with the three colour filters spun around really fast on a disk, which works somehow, and some people were complaining that they were getting headaches from the rainbows they saw where I only saw white (maybe it has something to do with the angle).
I got there too late to watch Ah My Goddess!, and I only caught a glimpse of the end of Jungle wa Itsumo Hale Nochi Guu. Afterwards, was the hour long dinner break, though, since I'm usually not too hungry at 6 p.m., being a fan of much later suppers, I opted to stay in the room, reading the last volume of Gals! (that I never quite finished reading before, for some reason), and I got to overhear a conversation from two guys who take their roleplaying games very seriously, where one of the guys was discussing how his character was wounded in battle and needed to heal, so he'd perform healing magic at some temple for a week, for some favour. Or something. I don't know if they were talking about a old school pen and paper RPG or one of those MMORPG online multiplayer thingies, but you get the idea.
I did see one anime that I hadn't yet gotten a chance to see, Cromartie High School, a comedy anime about rowdy-but-eccentric students at a tough, gang-ridden high school that is roughly Japan's equivelent of Adult Swim cartoons like Aqua Teen Hunger Force in terms of pure, plot-abandoning, pointless-but-fun, unmitigated "randomness".
What more can I say about an anime that features an unauthorized likeness of Freddie Mercury as a major supporting character (who never sings, other than in that one shot from the opening)?
Speaking of unauthorized celebrity allusions, the show was named after Warren Cromartie, who played Major League Baseball for the late, lamented Montreal Expos when I was a kid before leaving North America to become one of the J-League's biggest stars with the Yomiuri Giants. When a live-action movie version of the manga (comic) upon which the anime (cartoon) was based, Warren Cromartie sought an injunction against the release of the film, since they didn't have permission to use his name and he doesn't like being associated with rowdy students, but the case was settled out of court (presumably meaning that it cost less to pay off Cromartie than it would have cost to fight a lawsuit).
It's been licensed by ADV Films and, as such, isn't available on YouTube, but you can still see the opening, for a small taste of what the show is like.
I also watched a couple of episodes of Slayers Try, wherein Lina Inverse actually finds the "Claire Bible" thingy they're always going on about, but it's not a book but just some magical vision-inducing ball. I missed a whole slew of episodes, so it's a little hard to follow, though it's Slayers so it's not too complex, and, since I got a boxset of Slayers Try for Christmas, due to the Comic Book Shoppe having it as a cheap clearance item, and they allude to events in Slayers Next, I wasn't completely lost.
They also showed a couple of episodes of Serial Experiment Lain (I refuse to spell it with the first letters in lower-case), but as I have it on DVD already, and, as a show I tried to get into once but ultimately dismissed as a pretentious and disjointed mess of things and ideas that are brought up and then forgotten about, and I'd spoil the ending for you just to be a bastard (and since it's long past the two-year "sell-by" date for spoiler warnings anyway), but the series just gets confusing with little discernable narrative cohesion. Lain is god and "The World" on the Internet is the real world or something. Whaaa?
ITEM! I've taken a break from Gran Turismo 4, and I had been taking one even before my brother got me Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. It's not so much that I'm stuck. I just reached a "plateau" where none of the cars I try can win the big 10-race championship at the end of the Professional Events races, which would unlock the Extreme Events races, and I have to race a few of the big series, like the Deutsche Touring Meistershaft series (5 races and you get a Mercedes CLK-GTR race car which you can sell for big money, for a total of about 900 000 credits each time), over to get enough credits to afford the super race cars, because the race cars I currently have have sucky controls, or they control beautifully, like the tricked-out Camaro, and I can lead the race for a few laps, but they don't give me the option of using the magic tires all the computer-controlled cars seem to use that simultaneously somehow grip the road like they have claws on them and they don't wear out until the final lap. And I know I could just play the big series in B-spec mode, where I give orders to the driver, but I think B-spec mode is just a glorified demo mode, and it reeks of cheating. I have the game to race, not to watch.
And, on a different note, what the fuck is the point of Gran Turismo 4 including the Toyota Prius as a raceable car? It's too under-powered to actually win races (other than, maybe, in the Micro races, except it's too big for those). I know, it's the sort of virtual car that video-gaming liberals buy and feel good about having in their virtual garage, even if it's completely useless, but you're not burining real fuel, only virtual fuel, so a virtual hybrid car uses no more or less energy than a regular virtual internal combustion engine automobile and, if someone's such a hippy so as to feel good about "owning" a virtual hybrid car, shouldn't they be concerned about the electricity they're wasting on the PlayStation 2 and the television or monitor they're playing it on? All that electricity wasted just on entertainment?