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I ended Driving update for December 2013: My car by postponing making good on a promise.
Also, I made a promise at the end of the last report.
Yes, I bought this car in October 2003. I have a story about that, but I'll save it for the next report, along with why I named my car Yuki. Stay tuned.
I'm going to take a rain check on this promise. These look like the kind of stories I would write to post while I'm traveling, which I might do over the next two weeks.
Instead, I explained the name of my wife's car.
It's late and I'm tired, so I'm not up to it. Besides, this report is about my wife's car, which I call Ruby (my wife doesn't give her cars names). I gave her that name because of the car's color and because my wife and I are fans of "Once Upon a Time," which had a character named Ruby, who is really Red Riding Hood, for the first two seasons.
Well, my car turned over 220,000 miles today, so it's time to tell her story.

My previous car, a Nissan I called Molly, died in October 2003 after she turned over 210,000 miles during a drive back from an anime convention in South Bend, Indiana, although I didn't realize it at the time. I heard the engine knocking, which it did when the oil was low. I put in two quarts of oil (!) and continued driving home. Within a week, I had to put in more oil, and the engine began to sound just horrible. I took it in for service, and found out that all the seals had blown and the engine was getting ready to throw a rod. That was the end of my driving Molly. I had to get a new car.

About this time, one of the local Kia dealerships was advertising its deal. "Got a job? Got $100? Get a new Kia!" I qualified, so I rented a car and drove over to the nearest Kia dealer and got Yuki. It wasn't even the right dealership, but that didn't matter. I picked out a car from the previous model year that had a rebate to entice people to get it off the lot. I was able to roll that rebate into the down payment and was able to drive Yuki home without paying a cent. Ah, the long-gone days of easy credit!

As for Molly, the dealership accepted her as a trade-in worth $50 and had her towed away. At least I was able to get scrap value and free towing. Best of all, Yuki's interior looked exactly like Molly's. From the inside, it was as if I had just gotten a newer version of the same car with an automatic transmission. As I wrote back in 2011 and again in 2012, it was a concession to comfort and age.
When I needed to buy a car, I got a Kia instead. It got 32 miles to the gallon, but it was an automatic. I was willing to sacrifice a few miles to the gallon so that my left foot and right hand could rest. Yeah, I'm a sucker for convenience, too.
At least it wasn't the Aztek my son wanted me to buy. That would have been an environmental and economic disaster.

As for the name, my younger daughter suggested Yuki after Yuki Saiko, a character in the manga and anime "Silent Mobius." The character's image is the one I used at the head of this entry. It's the same one my younger daughter downloaded as a wallpaper on the computer I owned at the time. Why Yuki? In addition to "Silent Mobius" being a mutual favorite of ours, my daughter picked her out as the kind of woman she'd want for me; she was sweet, pretty and owned a coffee shop.* Yes, I love my coffee. Besides, the artist who drew the manga was named Kia Asamiya. My daughter wanted to name a creation of one Kia after the creation of another Kia. It stuck and that's how a Korean car got a Japanese name.

...
Now to celebrate my finally following through on something I've been teasing since March 11, 2010, when I was still posting these updates on my LiveJournal, I present the opening to Silent Mobius. Yuki Saiko appears at 0:45.



*Yuki wasn't my favorite character from the anime. That was Lebia Maverick. Even so, people who know the series would understand why a real person like her would have been a bad match.

**That was the day the renewal of my car registration was due. It was also my ex-wife's 65th birthday. That's as much as I'd like to think about her, thank you very much.

Adapted from Driving update for April 2014: Yuki, a longer entry at Crazy Eddie's Motie News.
neonvincent: For posts about geekery and general fandom (Shadow Play Girl)
Texas A&M: Science Fiction Collection adds Filk as Deeper than Swords Exhibit Closes
January 08, 2014
Fans of Game of Thrones have until February 7, 2014, to visit the George R. R. Martin Deeper than Swords exhibit at Cushing Memorial Library and Archives before it closes. The exhibit showcases objects, editions and manuscripts from the best-selling author’s prolific writing career. The collection forms the capstone of Texas A&M University Libraries’ internationally recognized Science Fiction and Fantasy Research Collection.

As the exhibit closes, the Libraries will broaden its dimensions by adding “filk” related materials to its science fiction collection. Filk is best described as a musical culture, genre and community among science fiction and fantasy fans, which is a manifestation of fan labor to create a wide-range of musical styles and topics.

Science fiction conventions, as well as designated filk conventions, have various filk programming that includes concerts and late night filk circles, where music is performed and shared, as well as panels about music and fandom. Most filk conventions put out songbooks with songs submitted by members of the community to share with attending members.

The Cushing Library filk collection will showcase examples of these songbooks, as well as audio, video, digital recordings and fanzines and fanvids—which demonstrate the interest and affection for particular aspects of both literary and broadcast science fiction and fantasy media. The collection seeks to preserve the popular legacy of science fiction and fantasy by documenting and acquiring various fanworks.
Originally posted at fandom_lounge on JournalFen.
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I tried to put together a serious entry last week at Crazy Eddie's Motie News and failed. Instead, I present Vladimir Putin on His Little Pony from JollyJack on DeviantArt.


Yes, Pooty Poot as a Brony. As if that's not enough to twit Vladimir Putin, the Most Interesting Man in the World, here is the music I decided to listen to when I saw this: "Go West" by the Pet Shop Boys.

More at Crazy Eddie's Motie News.
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)

I present to you some unfunny about a fandom that does unfunny things in a funny way--Juggalos. It seems that the fans of Insane Clown Posse have become decidedly unfunny to law enforcement and the FBI has made some Foolish Ballistic Insinuations as a consequence.

Last fall, the FBI included Juggalos in their National Gang Assessment for 2011 (PDF). On pages 22 and 23, the FBI lists them under "non-traditional gangs," calling them "a loosely-organized hybrid gang." Some of the criminal activities carried out by ICP fans appear in this section, along with a photo of a Juggalo with a gun that the FBI took from the ATF (trigger warning for descriptions of violence).



At first, the inclusion of Juggalos in the FBI's list was mocked by Spencer Ackerman at Wired, who observed "The FBI has recently had difficulty distinguishing ordinary American Muslims from terrorists; now it appears it has a similar problem distinguishing teenage fads from criminal conspiracies." As recently as Thursday, the Village Voice posted that people thought the FBI report was an example of "another example of a federal agency looking foolish for its cultural ineptitude." That was until the U.S. Marshal Service issued a press release listing the fugitives added to New Mexico's Most Wanted.
Mark Anthony Carslon A.K.A. Mark Carlton is wanted on two felony warrants for failing to comply with the terms of probation both on underlying armed robbery cases. Carlson is a member of the Insane Clown Posse “Juggalo” gang. The “Juggalos” were recently classified as a gang by the Albuquerque Police Department Gang unit and it is believed that Carlson is still actively committing armed robberies in the Albuquerque Metro area.
Bolding from The Village Voice, who also reproduced Carlson's wanted poster, which listed his criminal affiliation as "Insane Clown Posse 'Juggalo'." Poster over the jump.

Poster and ICP's response behind the cut. )

Originally posted to unfunny_fandom on JournalFen. Crossposted to Crazy Eddie's Motie News, ontd_political on LiveJournal and Michigan Liberal.
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NaBloPoMo June 2012


So, what's this month's theme?
JUMP

Every year when the pool opened, the first thing I needed to do was jump off the high dive. The whole act of jumping terrified me, and if I didn't do it as the first thing when I got to the pool, I would let that fall grow to epic proportions in my mind until I couldn't get myself to climb the ladder, and I'd kick myself the rest of the summer.

At BlogHer, we're going to encourage you this month to jump.

Jump into a new project, jump into a new idea, and most certainly jump into something that terrifies you so you can get over it. We're going to look at things that make us happy so we can jump for joy through our words. And we're going to look at things that make us nervous and jumpy.
...
So start thinking about different things you want to jump into this week.
At first, I thought that the theme of the month would come off as ironic considering that nearly everything I follow fell today. Then I noticed that the jump described was actually taking a plunge. That fits today's news perfectly. Even better, the concluding blogging idea was "look[ing] at things that make us nervous and jumpy." That's the entire purpose of this blog. I might as well jump!



Above crossposted from Crazy Eddie's Motie News.
neonvincent: For posts about geekery and general fandom (Shadow Play Girl)



I know I've been participating in Nablopomo for a long time when the monthly themes repeat themselves. Here was the theme from October 2010, when I was using my LiveJournal as my Nablopomo blog.
Greetings, NaBlo bloggers! The theme for October blogging is PLAY. It's a versatile word: you can play a game or a musical instrument; you can be in a play; and when you're steering wheel jiggles it's definitely got too much play. What does the word PLAY mean to you? It may take all month to find out.
Now, here's the theme for May 2012.
So what is the NaBloPoMo theme of the month?
PLAY

This month, because we're in a frisky mood, our theme for NaBloPoMo is PLAY. We'll be remembering your favourite games from childhood, talk about ways you still bring that spirit of playing into your life as an adult, and even look at whether you're a gracious or sore loser.

Make sure you head down to the storage room to reminisce about old toys. And you may even want to pull out the board games one night or create your own online game this month to play with your readers.
...
So start thinking about different ways you played this week.
If it weren't for LiveJournal being the target of DDoS attacks that take it offline from time to time, I'd be tempted to move my posts over there. Instead, I'll keep them here on Crazy Eddie's Motie News. As for what I'll do with it, I think I'll keep posting music, except that now I can also post instrumentals. I can also post videos, even if they don't have music. After all, don't videos "play?" Also, I'll be a good environmentalist and recycle the theme images from last time, which lack either month or year. I get bored with the typewriter logo that Nablopomo seems to have settled on once it moved over to BlogHer.

nablo1010_120x200nablo1010_120x90


A video of my favorite song about gaming plus a list of other posts with this theme behind the cut. )
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)

Follow up to last week's post.

This week's songs and the posts that feature them are:


Once again, the first post of this week is already up. This will be the last week of the Poem theme and the first week of the Play theme.  Play will allow me to include instrumentals as the music.  That's will be a relief!
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)

Follow up to last week's post.

This week's songs and the posts that feature them are:


Finally, the first post of the next week is already up.
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Default)

Follow up to last week's post.

This week's songs and the posts that feature them are:


Again, I've already  posted my first entry for this week.
neonvincent: For posts about geekery and general fandom (Shadow Play Girl)
I present to you the Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps playing a brief chorale arrangement of "Duel of the Fates" as a warm up.



That reminded me of a Star Wars/drum corps crossover "music bunny" that had been hopping around in my head the past month. A brief piece called "Mask of Revan" or "Darth Revan's Mask" from "Star Wars: The Old Republic" would also make for a good warmup. Here it is. Listen to it and hear how it might work in the same way that "Duel of the Fates" would. Just imagine the string parts played by trumpets and the harp played by bells.




On the one hand, I'll never be in a position to make this happen. On the other hand, that's a good thing for me. Drum corps is not good for my mental health.  On the other hand, playing this video game with my wife is.  Play together, stay together!
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)
I completely missed reposting any of my posts from Crazy Eddie's Motie News for March on the Nablopomo theme of Whether. Bad dog, no biscuits. I'll get around to organizing and posting linkspams from last month eventually. In the meantime, I'll resume my regular weekly summaries of the Nablopomo posts for April. This month, the theme is poetry. Here's what I wrote on April Fools Day.


From Nablopomo on BlogHer:
So what is the NaBloPoMo theme of the month?
POEM

In honour of National Poetry Month in April, we've made the theme POEM -- which can go in a multitude of directions. First and foremost, you can try your hand at writing some poetry. We'll be presenting a few fixed forms as well as prompts for free forms. Make a personal goal to write a haiku-a-day, write an entire post in rhymed couplets, or argue the merits of Pinterest... in sestina form.

We'll be writing about our reactions to poems -- which poems have come up at important moments in your life? Which poems do you return to again and again? Which poems have changed your mood, given you comfort, or made you want to be a poet yourself?

We'll spend the month looking at reflections of poetry in nature and social situations. And we'll be featuring YOUR poetry weekly. So get your poem on.
When I first read the theme and description, I considered not participating, as I'm not big on poetry. I especially had a hard time squaring the theme with a blog about sustainability, science, and politics, although "poetry in nature" might work. Then I realized that there were some forms of poetry that I liked, limericks and song verses. Most limericks wouldn't be fit for a family blog, but I can always find a good song for my posts. So, I'm participating again this month.
The songs that I've featured so far are:
There will be more next week, as I already have another post up.

Happy reading and happy listening!
neonvincent: For posts about geekery and general fandom (Shadow Play Girl)
Here's another piece of background music for Alderaan in addition to the one I posted yesterday, This one has the benefit of showing the lovely scenery in addition to playing the music.  And to think this is the planet Moff Tarkin destroyed as a demonstration of the Death Star's power.  Well, he certainly got what was coming to him!




neonvincent: For posts about geekery and general fandom (Shadow Play Girl)
In my previous entry, I mentioned how really beautiful Alderaan is in ST:TOR and how much my wife and I enjoy playing there. It helps that the music is gorgeous, too.  Here's an embed of the theme for the planet, which is called Alderaan, the Throne.




neonvincent: For posts about Twilight and trolling (Twilight Fandom wank trolls you)

The first full moon of 2012 will be tonight, the first of 13 full moons this year. Each of these moons has a name (and one of them has two names), as Space.com (via MSNBC) explains.*

How 2012's full moons got their strange names
Origins credited to Native Americans and early European settlers
By Joe Rao
updated 1/7/2012 3:07:59 PM ET
The start of 2012 brings with it a new year of skywatching, and lunar enthusiasts are gearing up for a stunning lineup of full moons. But, where does the tradition of full moon names come from?

Full moon names date back to Native Americans of a few hundred years ago, of what is now the northern and eastern United States. To keep track of the changing seasons, these tribes gave distinctive names to each recurring full moon. Their names were applied to the entire month in which each occurred.

There were some variations in the moon names, but in general, the same ones were used throughout the Algonquin tribes from New England, continuing west to Lake Superior.

European settlers followed their own customs and created some of their own names. Here is a list of all of the full moon names, as well as the dates and times for 2012: (Unless otherwise noted, all times are given in Eastern Standard Time.)
Tonight's full moon is the Full Wolf Moon which will reach maximum on January 9th (technically tomorrow) at 2:30 a.m. EST. The association of wolf with a full moon has cross-cultural connotations, particularly with superstitions about what else happens involving wolves, people, and full moons. Everyone, enjoy the light show and sing along with Warren Zevon. A-hoo!



Now that the show is over, surf over to Crazy Eddie's Motie News for the rest of the full moon names, along with important astronomical events associated with some of them.

*This article is among those I excerpted for last night's Overnight News Digest: Science Saturday (100 Year Starship edition) on Daily Kos. The headline article of that diary entry is one that also deserves a "Beginnings" entry of its own, especially given the science fiction slant of this blog. Like Anonymous, expect it.
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)



From Nablopomo on BlogHer.

So what is the NaBloPoMo theme of the month?
BEGINNINGS

January 1st is a blank slate, and you can make the year anything you want it to be? Leave your job and embark on a new career. Open that blank document and start that novel you always wanted to write. Join that online dating site, signup for a new class, or close your eyes and point to a place on a globe to plan your next vacation.

Beginnings can be scary, but as the adage by Lao-tzu goes, "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." You can take a single step, right? And after that, it's just putting foot before foot, taking your new journey slowly and letting it unfold at its own pace. Along the way, blog about your experience, not only so readers can follow along, but so that you have a record of how far you've come any time you feel yourself falter.
...
So what are you beginning this year? If you can name at least five things, it means you have at least five blog posts inside of you. And if you can do five posts, you can certainly expand that and do an extra 25 or so.
I have no problem popping off a post a day, as blogging about sustainability and politics in Detroit means never running out of material, so I've signed up again. I'm one of only two politics bloggers there, and the other one has already missed the goal of posting every day. Is this it? skipped the 3rd, 4th, and 6th. Yay, me.

On that note, here are the posts with the beginnings tag from this week.

Nablopomo for January 2012: Beginnings
This one has two versions of Chicago's "Beginnings" one from Chicago and Earth, Wind & Fire, and the other from the 27th Lancers Drum and Bugle Corps.

Occupy the Rose Parade, plus an astronaut on gardening in space
I love the Rose Parade, space exploration, and Occupy. I couldn't resist all three in one place.

2012: The Mayan Apocalypse? Yeah, right
Prepare for a year of DOOM!

Last night was the beginning of the primary/caucus season for 2012
And a year of politics, too.

WXYZ begins its North American International Auto Show coverage
This is a Detroit blog, after all.

Governor Snyder sued twice this week
Good going, Nerd.

New beginnings for two Metro Detroit transit projects
21st Century mass transit is "not dead yet!"

And that's it for this week.

neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Default)

Challenge:
1) Identify the song that was #1 the week you were born.
2) Find that song on YouTube.
3) Post that video on your wall without shame.




Sleep Walk's Wikipedia entry
neonvincent: For posts about geekery and general fandom (Shadow Play Girl)
Since I've been blogging a lot about Star Wars: The Old Republic, it's time I give another video game's music some love.


An acoustic and electric violin cover of two of my favorite themes from Skyrim. Arranged and performed by Jason Yang. Original soundtrack by Jeremy Soule.
In case the violinist looks familiar, it's because I've featured him before.
neonvincent: For posts about cats and activities involving uniforms. (Krosp)
...The Band Played Waltzing Matilda.






Mirrored at Crazy Eddie's Motie News.
neonvincent: Lust for  for posts about sex and women behaving badly. (Bad Girl Lust)




I'll blog about my trip to Oaxaca later. Instead, I'm using the music from the viral video I posted two weeks ago. Yeah, I'm that tired.

neonvincent: For posts about Twilight and trolling (Twilight Fandom wank trolls you)

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