The director of the superb Summer Wars, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, and The Wolf Children has a new production coming out this year: 「バケモノの子」, which translates more or less as "The Monster's Child", though the English title appears to the "The Boy and the Beast".
Here's a remarkably insightful look at Second Life, with a perspective of personal identity. Worth reading whether or not you're involved in SL - the themes apply to any sufficiently flexible virtual world.
If you're in or within reach of London, and have an interest in modern urban history, you might be sufficiently geekily interested in two new TfL tours, for which tickets will open at 10am on Friday, April 17th, at 10am. Going by the Rotherhithe-Wapping tunnel walk last year, if you're interested, you'll want to snag tickets as soon as convenient. "The one likely to cause the most excitement, is the exceptionally rare opportunity to go into the Clapham South deep level shelter, a series of tube tunnels dug next to the tube station that were used as accommodation during air raids. One of eight such shelters across London, most are off limits as they are used for secure document storage, so this is a very rare opportunity. The other tour is to see one of London’s newer disused tube stations — at Charing Cross. Go behind closed doors to exclusive areas not accessible to the public, walk under Trafalgar Square and see the London Underground from a different angle." [Edit: it would seem both events sold out within about five minutes. ^_^; But not before I landed tickets for the deep shelter!][w00t! The waiting list was real! - I also landed the Charing Cross ticket, which will segue oh-so-nicely into the White Horse's American beer festival. And they take their festivals seriously, with not just kegs, but even casks, and sometimes of very special brews..]
I had no idea Criterion had given Watership Down their attentions, but there it is: an absolutely gorgeous Blu-Ray, at long last. =:D Many thanks to whitetail for bringing this to my attention! I see there is an HD version on iTunes UK, but lacking any mention of Criterion, I suspect it's an old transfer; iTunes US does have explicitly Criterion's, though without any of the rather interesting extras.
I remain a trifle disappointed that of all the WiFi nodes I can see from here, only the roomie's and mine are non-generically named. What have you called yours? And are there any favorites you've spotted? (One I thoroughly appreciated, visible then from Muddy Waters on Church & Market, was named with a suitably short URL, along the lines of http://192.168.1.2/w - connect and load that page, and it explained the WiFi was open for anyone to use, and that if you'd found it helpful, to consider dropping them a line at a given email address. I did, and received a thankful note back =:)
I appreciate web design isn't an easy matter - many professions often seem easier from the outside. Nonetheless, there are some principles one might think would be fairly obvious to design in or allow for. The local bus company recently reworked their site, and committed some amusingly bad mistakes - now, true, having promo codes be case-sensitive isn't a grave mistake, but a bit silly. Rather more bizarre, though, is the date field on their contact form, for specifying the date of a trip you want to discuss - it hints, reasonably enough, that it should be of the form dd/mm/yyyy. So, you might be inclined to enter something like 2nd March 2015 as 2/3/2015. Nope! They mean quite literally what they said, and will reject anything but 02/03/2015. =:D (And let's not even get into the many sites that will reject phone numbers of the form 07684 786000, as advanced space removal technology has not made it into their toolbox) Okay, gripe done. ^_^
Gin of the week: Martin Miller's, distilled near Birmingham, then shipped to Iceland for dilution to 40%. (Apparently, they can't import the water, as they'd be required to treat it before use) To my palate, it's on a par in the world of gin as Chase and Grey Goose are in vodka. Very smooth, exceptionally soft mouth feel, but with all that makes gin what it is. =:9 I hadn't heard the name before, but it isn't merely the product of a marketing department - it is indeed the result of that person feeling dissatisfied with a G&T, and setting out to create their perfect gin.
If you'll recall the stolen fursuit from the other week: there's been an update. It's been returned, along with shipping costs; benevolently, the owner's choosing not to pursue the matter further.
Nice competition: two flights anywhere Cathay Pacific flies, in premium economy. (UK residents only)
With finances beginning to improve, I felt like finally returning to one of my old haunts on Saturday night, a pub with a particularly good line in food, a well-chosen selection of beers and ciders, and enough history to be.. well, I'd say nigh tangible, but those hefty beams are quite real. The place's date of construction isn't entirely clear, but it's apparently known that some previous owners laid on hospitality for the inbound Normans. Started off with their charcuterie plate (which still doesn't come with anywhere near enough baguette slices!), with slices of a deliciously tangy saucisson, deeply aged Serrano ham, and house-made pork rillettes and cornichons. Such a satisfying start to a meal. ^_^ The main, meanwhile, I chose from the specials board - as tempting as the lamb shank with puy lentils was (I'd had that on my first visit, and it was absolutely excellent), I plumped for the pan-fried pigeon breast atop spiced red cabbage, with potatoes dauphinoise, and a red wine sauce. Mmm.. really nicely done, with the meat cooked perfectly pink, nicely tangy cabbage, a rich sauce, and I'm always a sucker for that style of potato. =:9
Whew. I is a relieved bunny. ^_^ In the early hours of Thursday, I discovered the iPhone wasn't charging at all, nor being seen by Hazel. Awkward enough per se, particularly as I'd just added a month's broad area bus pass to it. ^_^; I tried vigorously blowing down the Lightning port, and using a bit of paper as an improvised spudger, but to no avail. To the Apple Store! Just, the only one with availability on the day (otherwise, Sunday or Monday) was a couple hours away.. still, I'm fine with any opportunity for travel, and the pass would cover most of it. ^_^ Mercifully, it did indeed turn out to be merely an accumulation of microfluff - a few minutes in the back room, and they had the Lightning and headphone sockets both in pristine condition. (And a minor bonus: got to see the Apple Watch in person. Rather a nice bit of tech and design, though I'm yet to be sold on the utility of smartwatches. Still, we'll see. There's inevitably going to be a good deal of discovery ahead for developers and the public alike, working out just what such turn out to be really good at and for)