Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Sequence of Unrelated Events

Turkey with stuffing.. gravy.. carrots.. peas.. cranberry sauce.. mashed potatos.. salad.. pumpkin pie. Who in their right mind doesn’t love a good Thanksgiving dinner? I know I sure do! This Friday was the Gunma Jet program Thanksgiving dinner party in Maebashi. Kinda early, but they do it this way in order to compromise between the US and Canada. They had the same thing last year at the same place and it was good shit, so I decided to go again. The café it was at sold overpriced booze, but they arranged something so that everyone could bring one 500 ml drink. I made mine count! I got a 500 ml bottle of coke, chugged half of it, and filled the rest with tequila. I took an early train so that I wouldn’t be late, but it turns out I ended up getting there way earlier than I was planning on. I ended up just walking around Maebashi for a bit in this shopping center area I had never checked out before. I was hoping that there would be an arcade but there wasn’t much of anything interesting at all. I arrived at the café where the dinner was taking place and somehow I was the first one there. I killed some time playing a little DS (Castlevania Order of Ecclesia is fucking awesome btw), and eventually people showed up. I sat with Liz and some other ALTs and enjoyed 3 plates full of Thanksgiving awsomeness. Also, after finishing that whole nice stiff Tequila coke (which just pretty much tasted like drinking straight Tequila as I got near the bottom), I had a good buzz going too.

After the dinner was over, I was ready to head out and go to Tokyo.. but being ready to go and being able to go are 2 different things unfortunately. You may recall that last year I had to participate in a PTA ping pong tournament that took place on a Saturday morning. Well.. it was about that time again, and as a result, I had to go home and wake up at 7 am. Lucky me. So, instead of taking the train the rest of the way to Tokyo, I walked back with Liz to the station and took the train back home and went right to bed.

To keep it brief, the ping pong tournament was a doubles format with 2 round robin pools. After the first pool, the lowest ranked teams from each played off in a losers pool to determine who got 5th 6th and 7th place (out of 7 teams) and the winning teams went on to determine 1st-4th in the other pool. I havnt played ping pong since last year's tournament. I was partnered up with some old PTA guy and our biggest flaw was that our play styles were just too different. I played really careful and conservative, just trying to get the ball over and wait for my opponent to fuck up. My team mate did the opposite and just smashed the shit out of the ball. As a result, I would sometimes get the ball smashed back at me for giving them an easy setup, and he would often times just spike the ball right into the net or the side of the table, and the combined flaws of both our play styles caused us to lose. Our games were all close, but we lost both our games I the first pool and were sent to the losers pool. However, we managed to beat both of the scrub 1-nensei (first year student) teams for free and got 5th. I honestly didn't care anyway, I just wanted it to be over so I could go on my way to Tokyo.

After it ended, the next train was scheduled to come very soon, so I rushed home, grabbed my stuff and headed for the station. As I was driving there I was stuck behind some old guy who was going way too slow (the roads in my town only have one lane going each way) and the train ended up passing me by as I was still driving to the station. I had an hour to kill till the next train (fucking inaka train schedule) so I stopped by to say hi to Ryoko who was busy working.

Anyway, I eventually made it to Tokyo after 3 hours of playing DS on the train. I headed right for Vegas and spent most of the day there playing. It wasnt extremely packed but a good ammount of players were there to get constant comp and not have to really wait long for your next turn. Inoue was beasting with his Eddie and after a couple tries I ended his 19 win streak. Also, En was there rocking shit with his Slayer and I ended his 28 win streak winning all 3 rounds after a couple tries as well. Inoue played me a few times with his Millia. I won twice and lost once. Also, Pink Axl was there (the guy who works at Vegas) and he told me that they would be getting BlazBlue on the 20th of this month. I got a few good games in agianst his Axl and we went back and forth. I also noticed that in 2 weeks from now, another 2 on 2 AC tournament is scheduled at Vegas so ill be hitting that up as well. Matt showed up at some point in there too. Seta, the Faust player who was on Hase's team for SBO quals was also there, playing his Faust and his Slayer (and his Slayer is beastly). I beat his Faust a couple times and beat his Slayer once. Matt wanted get some food and meet his girlfriend so he said he was gonna go ahead and I told him id catch up since I didnt lose yet. A little after, Seta played me again with his Slayer and beat me. Since he is a Faust player, he knows the Slayer/Faust matchup from both sides, so his Slayer is always really tough to beat.

After losing, I headed out to meet up with Matt and his girlfriend, Akiko, who were waiting on the corner by the Beatles McDonalds. We ended up going to this awsome Indian resturaunt sorta near where Current is where they had all you can eat nan and curry sets for like 750 yen! This place was fucking great. Ill go there again for sure. As I mentioned before, Matt met his girlfriend through his ekaiwa teaching job he does unofficially on the side. She is one of his students. I asked her if Matt was a good teacher and she took quite a long time to answer. She kinda just stuttered a bit and was like "umm.. errr.." heh.. it was pretty amusing. She's overally pretty cool though, and has good taste in music, being a big Dream Theater fan, she asked me where I got my hat im always rocking. Ive still seen them live more times than her though :P

After eating we went took a walk to the cigar shop where I got a cigar and then headed back to Vegas and eventually Rod (Honnou) showed up. We played for a little bit more. Seta was still there playing his Faust, and this one other Faust player who's name im not sure of but is often around, were playing lots of mirror matches. Seta had 11 wins. I then got on the machine and beat Seta on my first try and ended his streak. I also ended up beating the other Faust. After playing a few more various people, eventually Seta played me again. He beat me, and then I came back at him and tried again.... and again... and again... and eventually he beat me like 5 times in a row. I was starting to get pretty pissed off actually because somehow he was just in my head. He knew exactly what move to throw out at the perfect time and it always just beat whatever I tried. Im sure me getting pissed off just made things worse and it was starting to get ugly. I was doing very well against him earlier but I think I just took losing to him so many times more personally since I lost to him in that mirror match at the Tsudanuma SBO qual (the one where En beat Ogawa). That day I was suffering from "whisky dick" so I just played like crap, but I was doing very well against him before, so I guess I was just getting pissed that I was suddenly doing so bad and it was just like a slippery slope. It was getting late anyway and we were about ready to all go drinking, so I just said fuck it and left. Matt, Akiko, Rod, and I headed out and stopped at one of the intersections on the way where we met up with Mi Seon.

When we go to Current, I was still pretty annoyed by losing to him so I ordered a shot right off the bat. It felt good and I shortly forgot about the whole thing. I then noticed that something was off. Current was relatively packed yet I knew almost no one there. I also noticed that the music was rather... well... crappy. I dont really know how to describe it, but it was kinda like ska but just really... weird. Like... at some point they played a fucking cover of the hokey pokey. It turned out that it was an event night. Mogi and Masami were working the bar and to say the least, were also not very excited about having to work at this event. Sushi tried to make the most of it saying "well theres lots of girls dancing!" which was true... but it did little to save the atmosphere for me and none of them were anyone I knew or seemed particularly interesting. The only other people I knew there were Kristey (that one random blonde chick), and SPG Chris. I also noticed that Rod and Mi Seon were no where to be seen. Appearntly, Matt told me that Sushi tried to charge Mi Seon the 1000 yen event cover when she came in, cuz I guess he didnt recognize her from before and she didnt really wanna pay it. They ussually dont charge regulars the event cover prices. When Matt and Akiko walked in, Matt told Sushi she was his girlfriend so she didnt have to pay. Matt also said something about Rod being tired so they just left together appearently. Its a shame I didnt know cuz all I had to do was tell Sushi they were with me and im sure that she wouldnt get charged but oh well. Kristey left shortly after we arrived cuz the music sucked.

I had an interesting conversation with SPG Chris. He told me that he read my blog! I was very surprised because I never even told anyone who goes to Current (who isnt a Guilty Gear player) that I have a blog in the first place. He said Matt linked him to it. He said he actually really enjoyed reading it and that it was very ammusing. Im always pretty honest about what I write in my blog and sometimes I wonder if all the people who go to Current would apreciate some of the things I write about them or not... especially since I use their real names. In retrospect it would probably had been best to use fake names for everyone right from the start but its pretty much too late for that now! While I honestly have nothing against SPG Chris, I know that I have mentioned that a few other people at Current don't really... well... care for him too much and have mentioned this in my blog, so I felt kinda bad knowing he read all that but I guess thats the way it goes. I just write what happens. This blog has always been 100% truth and nothing is made up, so if someone who read's it gets offended who is part of it then that kinda sucks but well... hmm... Generally if someone was to actually read my blog and ask me to take something out about them that they wanted to keep private, I would, but since no one from Current knows this blog exists I cant really do that. I wonder how much editing I would have to do with some of this stuff... Anyway, Chris also told me that 27yov is now 28 year old virgin instead lol! I asked why he hasnt been around and he says hes been busy with school and stuff but might come again soon.

The Snus Man also showed up and as soon as he walked in he placed a whole fresh pack of snus right in front of Matt and I just cuz hes the fucking man! We sat with him at a table for a bit and chilled but eventually we decided that Current was just sucking tonight so we decided to go somewhere else. Matt and SPG Chris realized that tonight is actually PSY's 4th anniversary party so it was easy to figure out where to go next!

We arrived at PSY and it was pretty damn full since its such a small bar. They were charging a 2000 yen cover but you got 2 drinks with it. I just ordered a Tequila redbull and a Jager Redbull since they are 900 yen each anyway and that way I didnt feel ripped off hah. First time trying both of those btw. I think the Jager goes better with it than the Tequila. I have no idea how this came up, but SPG Chris and Matt were having a conversation about if they had to give a blowjob to either the cool PSY bartender dude who always plays our requests, or Mogi, which one would they choose. I was like... why the fuck are you even having this conversation?! And SPG Chris is like, guys in Norway talk about this stuff pretty often actually. Haha WTF! Amusing to say the least. (they both chose the PSY bartender btw hah). They were also giving away these PSY bandana's with the cover charge. The Snus Man put it on and it looked pretty cool heheh. He left shortly after though cuz I guess he couldnt stay out too late and had to take it easy on the drinking tonight. Just as we were about to leave to head to GODZ, Heidi walked in and she was with Anna! We told them we were gonna go to GODZ but would be back soon.

At GODZ I busted out my cigar and enjoyed smoking it. There were a few people there but I didnt know any of them aside from the bar tenders. We requested lots of songs and they played some good stuff so it was fun times. At one point, the bald dude bartender just like grabbed the cigar from me and took a drag off it without even asking. I thought it was a bit rude actually since I know him but like... not THAT well. I have no problem sharing it but ussually its polite to at least ask first yknow? Whatever, I was drunk and in a good mood so I didnt care but still. Anyway, we left GODZ once everyone pretty much cleared out and we were the only ones left.

When we got back to PSY it was now even more packed, to the point where you could hardly move around in there. Also, Ayami was there which was a huge surprise! She was alone this time instead of with Mai and Ayano which is almost always the case. She said it was her first time at PSY. Also, Masami showed up! I guess Mogi and Sushi told him he could get off work early and spared him from the misery of working that shitty event. Eventually Matt and Akiko left at around 6 am and I stayed for only a short while after since it was getting pretty fucking late and I had stuff to do the next day, though the place was still pretty bumping. I have no idea how late they stayed open. I got some quick food by myself before heading to the manga kissa to pass out.

The next day I had an important task at hand... buy my girlfriend's birthday present! I was gonna do it last Sunday but since I had to lug my bass guitar and amp around, it would just be too trouble some to do lots of shopping in crowded stores. I honestly wasnt sure what to get her. I knew that whatever I got her she would like it anyway cuz shes just like that, but I wanted to get her something nice anyway. I went to a shit ton of stores in both Shinjuku and Harajuku. In the end, after walking around and shopping for almost 6 hours (Im sure fucking glad I had my MP3 player), I finally found some cute stuff in Harajuku that I think she will like. Shes by no means even close to an otaku and doesnt even like anime much, but she likes the studio Ghibli and Miyazaki stuff, so I got her some stuff related to that. I wanted to get her a nice warm blanket that she could use a lot because Gunma is fucking cold in the winter and houses do not have insulation or heat aside from kerosene heaters. Its not safe to leave a kerosene heater on for too long so when you sleep, you really have no heater going. I personally sleep in a hooded sweatshirt, sweatpants, warm thick socks, and 3 blankets during winter. I found a cute Totoro blanket so I got that for her along with a few other things as well. Ryoko loves monkeys so I wanted to get her one with monkeys on it but I couldnt find one anywhere. Hopefully she likes it. I got an email from Rod asking if I was going to Vegas. I told him once I finished up shopping for her gifts id meet him there.

When I arrived at Vegas it felt good to just sit down. My feet were killing me. Rod was there was playing against some Zappa player and lost 11 times in a row but was determined to beat him. Eventually he did. Gin (slayer) was there too and was playing on the cab next to me. After playing for a bit, it started to die down a little. No one was playing me so Rod got on and played against me like I think 6 times with his Johnny and lost but eventually got a win on me. After that, he played a vast array of characters against me like Faust, Potemkin, I-no, and Johnny. I forgot how many wins I had but I think it was around 17 or something. I told him I had to leave cuz it was getting late, so I said goodbye and headed to the station.

This time I made sure to leave with enough time to not miss my train. I got on the train on time and got off at Akabane to transfer. I got on the train for the Takasaki line. I wasnt really paying much attention but then I noticed that it said the next stop would be Ueno. My heart sank and I realized that I was on the train going the WRONG WAY! I didnt really pay attention well when I got on cuz the train I got on was the one that leaves at the usual time I always take, but it just happened to be the one going the other way and I was just tired and not paying attention. I got off at Ueno and checked out my options and I only had one choice. Theres a regular train that would be leaving soon but it arrives at Takasaki 2 minutes before the very last train back to my town. 2 minutes isnt much time to transfer but it was worth a try.

Eventually I arrived at Takasaki and as soon as the train door opened I sprinted up the stairs and got to the next platform. It turned out that I had enough time and probably even had a whole minute to spare! It turns out that all those times I recently took the limited express train and wasted 900 yen was not necessary. I guess I can take this train in the future more often since it actully gives me almost another 45 minutes of gaming time, but if I miss it, I run the risk of being stranded.

When I got home and took off my shoes, the smell was brutal! Too much walking around in thick sweaty socks for hours. I have no idea whats going on next weekend as far as gaming. There might be a tournament but Ill have to do some checking. Current has some event called X-factor but I have no idea wtf it is. I somehow doubt it has anything to do with Marvel. Hopefully its not another shitty event.

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