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Which is a whole lot easier said than done. It doesn't help that work is being ridiculous, as in, "What do you mean, you can't grade 250 final exams in one afternoon?" and "What do you mean, it takes more than an hour to read and correct 40 essays?" >_> When I get home, my brain pretty much shuts off. I have so much stuff to catch up on that it's hard to find a place to even get started.

Anyway, to keep myself from feeling overwhelmed, I'll just post about good things for now. And the good things are very good! Since I didn't have time to book a trip to Malaysia for winter break, I promised myself that I would go to Sapporo for Yuki Matsuri instead. I was really worried about getting plane tickets, since I can only fly on the same days as everyone else, but I managed to get the ones I wanted. Not at the cheapest price level, but still pretty cheap. I have to fly in and out of Nagoya, but it saves about ¥40,000.

And the super special awesome bonus? Guess who just happens to be playing at Zepp Sapporo that weekend? So now I have tickets to Sapporo and tickets to see Asian Kung-Fu Generation while I'm there. Now I just need to figure out what else I'll do for those 2 1/2 days (besides visiting the conveniently located Pokémon Center, lol). Almost as exciting, the weekend after that I'll be seeing Straightener in Osaka. I still can't believe I won two pre-request lotteries in a row!
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I'm seriously thinking of buying Pokémon Platinum now, instead of waiting for the US release. Because I'm just that lame. (But it would be good Japanese practice, right?)

The Weezer concert was so amazing. The only disappointments were: A) the Weezer towel sold out before I could get one, and B) Asian Kung-Fu Generation's set was way too short! But Gotoh was so cute talking about how they'd wanted to be "Japan's Weezer" and now they were opening for the real Weezer.

Weezer's part of the show started with a hootenanny on a small stage in the center of the room, which I was literally right next to. Rivers came out first, and spent like ten or fifteen minutes chatting with people, singing Japanese children's songs, and napping on the stage. Of course, he didn't talk to me, because I'm not Japanese enough. :P And then some Japanese fans who had been selected through processes unknown went up on stage with their instruments (including a trombone), and the rest of the band showed up, and they did acoustic versions of "Island in the Sun", "El Scorcho", and "Beverly Hills". Then Weezer went up to the main stage and the "real" concert started, and it was made of awesome and yay. They're soooooooo good live! ^o^ During the spoken part of "Undone" (which strangely enough, seemed to be one of the least-popular songs they played -- the audience seemed to be confused by it), Rivers told a story about going to an onsen, which was basically: "I went to an onsen for the first time. It was a little strange. But I think I'll go again. Let's all go to the onsen together." In the next part, he talked about his favorite manga (Detroit Metal City). XD

They didn't go too heavy on songs from the new album, which was good, because frankly, I don't think the new album is that great. ^^; However, I have to say, "The Greatest Man That Ever Lived", which left me unimpressed on the album, is fucking amazing live liek whoa. And everyobody yelled "That's right!" at just the right time during "Troublemaker", and it made me happy. ^-^ Annnnnd, they played "Pink Triangle", which I totally didn't think they would! :D I was surprised that they didn't play "Across the Sea", though.

Merch report! I got an AKG t-shirt, the AKG tour towel, an AKG wristband, an AKG pencil case, the new AKG eco bag, which is not quite as awesome as my other one, but says "Now is the times when the punk rockers think about the earth," two Weezer t-shirts, and two Weezer stickers. I think that's it. >.> I really wanted that towel! ;-;

And that used up every ounce of my energy for the weekend. I've been completely exhausted for the last week and a half. ._. I think I should get my thyroid tested again (I don't think they did the right test when I had it done a few years ago and was told I was fine), but I don't know how to go about doing that here. *sigh* Of course, the other main thing it could be is mono, except I don't have a fever, but I don't GET fevers anymore no matter how sick I am, which points back to a thyroid problem. [insert rant here about it not being a "real" fever if it's not over 99°, even if it's a full two degrees higher than your normal temperature] >.> Bleh.
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I was about to get in the shower, when I remembered I hadn't done my daily Picross yet, and I HATE having that blank spot on my calendar all month. So I was doing that, and for some completely unknown reason, I decided to check Weezer's website to see if they'd posted any tour dates, because for the last forever, their site has been all "we're not on tour now, lol!" But this time, it was "O HAY WE'RE IN OSAKA NEXT WEEKEND. AND BTW, YOUR FAVORITE BAND IS OPENING FOR US."


....I'm still in shock. This is way too good to be true.
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fsejrhgj *flails* I still can't believe I actually saw The Police live. And it was amazing. It was my first time at a stadium concert, and I was up in the nosebleed seats, but I had a good view of the stage. The lighting was soooooooooo good (don't know why, but good lighting at a concert is really important to me), and Andy and especially Stewart were just incredible. The big disappointment was that Sting did almost all the singing by himself, so there were none of those great Police harmonies, which is one of my favorite things about The Police to begin with. ;_; Also, no concert towels! What's up with that? I was really looking forward to having a Police towel in my collection! But it was definitely definitely worth going, because I never ever thoguht I would actually have the chance to see The Police perform live. And I was so happy because they did an extended version of "So Lonely", which is my favorite song of theirs, but since it's not a single, I wasn't sure if they'd play it or not, but they did and kyaaaa~~~~ ♥

Message In A Bottle
Synchronicity II
Walking On The Moon
Voices Inside My Head/When The World Is Running Down, You Make The Best Of What's Still Around
Don't Stand So Close To Me
Driven To Tears
Hole In My Life
Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic
Wrapped Around Your Finger
De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da
Invisible Sun
Can't Stand Losing You/Regatta de Blanc
King Of Pain
So Lonely
Every Breath You Take
Next To You

As for goods, I got the world tour t-shirt and the Japan-only hoodie. :D

Also, Osaka Dome totally looks like a giant spaceship.
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I think today would classify as a good day: no classes; the local bakery re-opened in its new location, bigger and better than ever (they have chocolate chip bagels, what) and just a block away from school; there was a family of no fewer than three wild monkeys prowling the neighborhood (Me: Look! A monkey! Student: 何や? Me: *points* Student: Oh!! Cat!); and I SAW BUMP OF CHICKEN LIVE OMG. Of course, I had to pay 4x the face value of the ticket, but better that than regret not going forever. Supernova live is ♥~~~~~~~~~

The bad news is, I have to get up at my regular time tomorrow, and I still have to shower before bed. >.>
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Happy Birthday, [ profile] nightflight! I hope you have a great day~ ♥

Man, Straightener puts on one effing KICK-ASS concert. And Nanba Hatch is a really nice venue. There was no opening act, which was good, because that meant I was able to get back to Kyoto before the last subway. There also wasn't anything in the way of set design, but the lighting was so freakin' amazing. Especially at the end of "March" when they had these bright white lights shining from behind the band into the audience and they kept getting brighter and brighter until it hurt to look at the band~

I wasn't able to get too close to the stage, but from where I was, I had a really good view of both the band and the crowd in front of the stage. I think I like that better than being down in the crowd. I was also standing right behind two guys who weren't into jumping up and down, so it was really lucky for me. ^^ (Is that proper English? God, I can't even tell anymore.)

In addition to the band being just so damn good, the bassist really gets into performing, like there's honestly nothing else he would rather be doing than playing on that stage. It was really fun to watch him.

As for merch, I got a tour t-shirt, the tour towel, a wristband, and a bright pink keychain with the Straightener dog on it. The keychain is for my bike, since it's a happy keychain, and I have a happy yellow bike. (My bike is also named Ken-chan because Ken-chan is a happy name.)

I really want to see Straightener again. This concert was sold out, but since I got a pre-sale ticket, I don't know how fast the tickets went. I hope I'll be able to get tickets next time, too. Now if only I can get into the Bump of Chicken concert~~~ >o<
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I can has blatherings about Asian Kung-fu Generation? )

I’m hoping that this string of good things, particularly situations which seem bad but turn out well, applies to the JLPT, too. I did really badly on the first two sections, but much better than I expected on the last section, which is worth half the test. So there is a very slight possibility that I may have passed, but I won’t find out until March or so. :x

This post has been brought to you by the letters A, K, and G, and the fact that I have no classes today. \o/


Dec. 5th, 2007 12:23 am
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I should be posting about my trip to Koyasan and finding enlightenment (it was behind the couch the whole time!) and stuff, but instead I'll just spazz about my ticket to see The Police in concert. :3

(I also want to whine about other concerts that I do not have tickets for, but I'll save that for another time.)
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>o< Ten days until I find out whether or not I have Asian Kung-Fu Generation tickets. *crosses everything*
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If you're in the mood for fresh mountain air, do not go to Yellowstone. XP Stinky. But I saw Old Faithful erupt, and the paintpots, and a big herd of elk, and a bunch of other cool stuff. To get there, I took this road that went right over the top of an 11,000 foot mountain, and at the very summit was a herd of mountain goats. The babies were so cute! I camped at Yellowstone, which was much more pleasant than Badlands (where the temp didn't drop below 90 until about 3 in the morning), and even though my food wasn't strictly properly secured, I didn't get attacked by bears. The next day I drove south through the Tetons to Salt Lake City. The Tetons are really impressive. It's definitely an area I'd like to go back to again.

Utah has a lot of seagulls, which makes sense if you think about it, but it was still weird to see them there. I went to Arches National Park, which was amazing, but soooooooooo hot. D: The average high during the month of July is 100, and I went during a heat wave. ~.~ But then a thunderstorm moved in and there was a huge rainbow~

I managed to make it to my aunt and uncle's near Aspen that night, in spite of a major flaw in her directions. My uncle has his own motorcycle repair business now, so we took a couple of the bikes he'd just finished out for a test drive. He's also the caretaker of the motorcycle mentioned in this article. Then we went into town for lunch, I finally bought HP7, and I had a pretty uneventful trip to my dad's house.

And thus, my road trip ended. I didn't have as much time at my dad's as I originally wanted, but we played tennis, went out to dinner with my brother John, bought a Squishee from an authentic Kwik-E-Mart, and went to the midnight showing of The Simpsons Movie. I washed Sei, but because of a power outage, I didn't have time to polish and wax him. :x I miss him.... ;_____;

Flying back to NH was a hassle, with the airline security and bad weather around DC, but I got about halfway through HP7, instead of doing stuff I actully should have been doing. And last night was the free They Might Be Giants concert at Mohegan Sun! I just barely got in, which meant I actually got to be in the reserved section instead of the regular section. There were free giant foam hands, and they played some old stuff I'd never heard live before, like The Famous Polka. And I wasted way too much money on the slots afterwards. -_-

And now I have a freaking ton of stuff to do before I leave for Japan, so I really should stay off the internets as much as possible.

22 days
4970 miles
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Ugh, my head feels like it got run over by that thing that carries the space shuttle to the launch pad, and I don't know why. Maybe it's because I took my meds with vodka. You're not really supposed to do that.

Anyway! The Cinematics were awesome, like always. I say that as if I've seen them more than twice. But I'm pretty sure that awesome is their default state. Most people there had never heard of them, but everyone said afterwards that they were really good. Actually, I heard several people say that they wished they'd played longer. Scott had a cold, so he was drinking tea while everyone else was drinking beer. XD You couldn't tell from the singing, though. And he is still omg so adorably gorgeously cute. *_*

Mute Math is...............



Well, they're very melodic, very jazzy, almost new agey, even. A part of me wants to say mellow, except they're as far away from mellow as you can possibly get. They sound kind of like Sting might sound if Sting was still a rocker instead of a wuss. And was on a lot of speed and LSD. 'Cause oh man, they put on one crazy show. The lead singer was doing handstands off the keyboard, and the drummer was playing the ceiling at one point. And I couldn't even count how many drumsticks he broke. (They toned it down a lot when they were on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and they still ended up destroying the set.) But what struck me most is that I've never felt so much positive energy coming from a performance. It's no wonder their shows always sell out.

So afterwards, I was of course hanging out at The Cinematics' merch table, and they did remember me! :D And I gave Scott a hug, and I got a signed poster~ And Ramsay and I were talking about Mute Math (as he was rolling a joint), and he said they were kind of worried about being booked with them when they couldn't find anyone who'd ever heard of them, but then they saw their ticket sales, and it's like, wtf, they sell out every single show they play. And I was like, "That's exactly what [ profile] blueskin said!" And Ramsay's like, "Oh, you know Kevin?" (He said you were a really great guy, btw.) However, I was not able to work into the conversation how Providence is so close, it's almost like having a day off before tomorrow's concert, shouldn't they go out and have some drinks or something? So my hopes of hanging out with the band were dashed. ;_; But I did get Mute Math's cd (I wish now I'd gotten their DVD, too) and yes, a Mute Math t-shirt. I know I need to cut back on t-shirts, but I can't help it! I don't feel right leaving a concert without a t-shirt! (Their merch table was run by the lead singer's wife, which surprised me, because he was giving off soooo many gay vibes. But that has almost nothing to do with me liking them, really!)

Ohhhhhh, I wanna go to tomorrow night's show in Providence! >o< But even if I did blow off work, the venue's tiny, and I'm sure it's already sold out. *emo*

for my own reference - songs performed, in no particular order )
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Wooooo, got my Cinematics ticket for Sunday! And album comes out Wednesday! *bounces*

Now if only I could get my printer to work.... *kicks it*
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:O They make clear duct tape now! It is both A) awesome, and B) what's holding my computer desk together. ^^U Also, the My Little Pony "Ponyville" sets? Fugliest things ever.

In bad news, they pushed back the release of The Cinematics' album to next month, but in good news, they switched the New Haven show to a Boston show! They added a Providence show too, but I can't go to that since it's on a weeknight. ;-; But the new schedule will make it a lot easier to go to the Montreal show, if I decide to do that. ^^

I got a free sofa yesterday, which is yay, but it will clash horribly with that beautiful butterfly cabinet I saw at Target the other day. (It looks like it came straight out of Loveless, and I want it~) Also, someone at work *may* be giving me a TV, but that's not for sure yet.

And I have a crapload of stuff to do before Friday, so I had better get going.
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*spazz spazz*

OK Go concert = EFFING AMAZING. So much.

The show started with a local band called Scamper. Their songs were all chord-based rock; nothing too original, but very very good. The next band was The Cinematics. Think Simple Minds meets Franz Ferdinand. They were incredible. Just wow. And the lead singer is hot times nine billion. He had this great '80s haircut, and looked like he just stepped out of Ferris Bueller's Day Off. And the Scottish accent? Yeah. Rwar.

And then OK Go! >o< And I was way close up front! So not only was I out of the path of the speakers so my ears didn't get murdered, but I had an awesome view of everyone, especially Tim, Damian, Damian's legs, and Damian's crotch. X3 They had a big projection screen behind them which played different things during different songs, and it worked really well. Especially during "Invincible", when they showed not the video itself, but all the stuff blowing up in the video. During "Here It Goes Again", it was a trippy treadmill design. XD They were all dressed in the style of "Oh No" too; Damian had this really cool tie pin, and Andy was so cute in his suit, and Tim was pimpin' like always. About the third song in, Damian goes, "Okay, who in this audience is a good musician?" and I'm like, "Me! 8D" and he gives me this kind of suspicious look and then hands me a miniature tambourine with the OK Go logo on it!!!!!!!! They threw some more out into the audience, but mine is specialer because it was personal. ^o^ Plus the song they played then was "Don't Ask Me", which is one of my favorites. It kind of broke during "It's A Disaster", but somehow settled itself out. ^^;

About halfway through the show, they went into the middle of the audience and did really nice intimate versions of "A Million Ways" and "What To Do." Then they went back onstage for the rest of the concert, and they finished (way too soon!) with the "Million Ways" dance. The screen in the background showed the same shot of Damian's backyard from the video, which made it all that much cooler, but OMFG, seeing Tim and Damian dance like that only 5 feet in front of me. I thought I was going to faint from the sexiness. And the fangirls all screamed when Damian and Andy were dancing together. XDD

Then the sucky part! The band didn't come out afterwards. D: Which was odd, because they nearly always do. Me and a group of girls I kind of assimilated into waited until security kicked us out, and then we hung out at the merch table. I got the OK Go DVD, and the Cinematics single. Then we were hanging out some more, and who do I see at the coat check, but Scott, the hottie lead singer from The Cinematics! So I asked him to sign my single, which he did, and then he gave it to the drummer to sign, and as we were chatting, the bassist showed up, so he signed it too. I mentioned that I really wanted to have my tambourine signed by OK Go, so Scott (have I mentioned how incredbly hot he is?) took it backstage for me!!!! ^______^= Of course, it was during that time that The Cinematics' guitarist showed up, and Scott had my silver marker, so he had to sign my single in regular black ink. ^^U So even though I didn't get to see OK Go personally, I did get my tambourine autographed, plus the really really really really hot rock star guy was nice to me! *flails*

Then I got horribly lost on the way home, because it was dark and rainy and only my third time driving in Boston. ^^; Like that matters when I have total awesomeness to sustain me.

You should see the bruise on my thumb from that tambourine.... XD;;

Oh yeah, and go listen to The Cinematics at their website.

for my own reference - song list )
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Polysics live is effing amazing. Wow. You really haven't experienced Polysics at all until you've seen them play live. I missed hey willpower because on my way from Sasuga (Nekota Yonezou manga and FuruBa fanbook with sparkly stickers!!!!!) to Alewife, Sei-chan suddenly developed the power of teleportation. and within the space of half a second, I went from the middle of my google map to about three miles away, completely off the map and going the complete opposite direction. And I had no idea where the heck I was until I realized I was driving next to the Charles River and headed to places I do not want to be driving. ^^;;;; The houses in that part of Cambridge are really nice, though. Anyway, I missed his performance, but I did run into Will Schwartz after, and I was like "Hey, I just saw you in The Advocate!" and he was like "Wow, I really like your shirt!" XD Actually, I got many compliments on my shirt, since it features the cover art from Asian Kung-Fu Generation's Loop & Loop EP. I made friends that way, which was good, since [ profile] pieces was too sick to go with me. ;_; The Talk was really good. The songs were really catchy and tight. Great bass and drums. After their set, I decided to buy a Polysics t-shirt because I am a t-shirt h0. And as I'm paying, I see someone dressed in red to my left, and my first thought (I'm such a dork) is "Oh, someone came in Polysics cosplay!" And I look over, and HOLY SHIT POLYSICS IS STANDING RIGHT NEXT TO ME. ALL OF THEM. I AM STANDING TWO FEET AWAY FROM HIRO. I was totally huaaaaakjhakgjhliurhhgvkdjfhg. And omg, all of them are just so adorable! >o< And the performance was just amazing. Hiro is such a spazz. XD And Kayo is so cute, deadpanning everything! I definitely want to go the concert in Wilkes-Barre at the end of the month if I can crash with Lauren for the weekend. Would go to Hartford tomorrow, but it's too far to drive back and still be conscious for work in the morning. Oh well, I'll just have to make do with my autographed 7" picture EP until then. ^__^

(It also bears mentioning that Hiro drank an entire draft beer in one gulp during one of the songs. XD)

Then on my way back to Alewife, I swung by Kotobukiya to stock up on Pocky, and I also got bubble tea, Japanese pastries, and red bean ice cream because red bean ice cream is yum! Doesn't go too well with coffee bubble tea, though.

Other news.... Last monday, I told my supervisor I wanted a raise. This past week, I've worked 47 hours, even though I was running a fever through Wednesday. No one else in my department worked even 40 hours. On Monday, I'm going to ask about the raise again, and if I don't get it, I'll likely be spending next year working in Japan. :x


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