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Browsing Posts published in December, 2004


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Earlier this evening, I got around to beating Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. Oh man what an awesome game. Took me around 21 hours of playtime to beat the thing, but it was worth it.

Now, to add to my list of things to do: do somethin awesome and get the nickname “Big Boss.”

While I always tell myself that I don’t want to be “like that,” I must admit that after going to Crestwood Mall today, the differences between America and Japan really hit me. I dunno, just everything seemed different. Maybe it’s because I haven’t really done much since I got back (aside from sleeping at weird times and playing Metal Gear 3), but wow: I’m not in Japan anymore.

Rather than make this some kind of long, boring essay (let’s not forget how lazy I am), here’s a quick list of things that were blatantly different. Actually, it’s a top/bottom 6 list of things, starting with “ya so what” to “oh man lets go back NOW.” It was originally going to be 10, but I can’t think of any more right now. I know it just sounds like a lot of complaints, but c’mon: Japan was a blast and I’m still in that high. Not that I hate America or anything stupid like that, but things are definitley a different world.

6) Things were dirty here. Maybe it’s just Crestwood, but everything was kind of dirty and unkept.

5) Arcades here suck. I instinctively went to checkout what games they had, and the place was totally empty, with lots of empty room, no good games, and only like 2 crane games (can’t hold a candle to the UFO Catchers).

4) Stuff’s a lot cheaper here. I was used to seeing CDs for 3000 yen and DVDs for 5000. I walked into a place today and the cheap DVDs were like 10 bucks. Score one for USA.

3) Stores are huge here. I guess the stores in Japanese malls like LaLaPort really were smaller than here.

2) Drinks are huge here. I ordered a regular from a coffee shop and it looked like I ordered a barrel of coffee. I ordered the large in Japan and it was about half that size.

1) No hot Japanese girls in skirts and boots! Even though like half of the time in Japan, they were ugly from the front, it was always nice to see that everywhere.

Life back home

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Things are pretty non-eventful here. It’s nice to spend time back at home and all, but it’s no Tokyo. Not that I’m experiencing any “culture shock” or related BS. I am, however, a bit jet lagged, meaning that my sleep schedule it really messed up. I guess I do this whenever I’m home on break though anyways, haha. I just sleep at really weird times. I’m going to try to go out with some friends tomorrow night, at the very least for the sole purpose of trying to get back into a “regular” life and schedule here.

Oh, and I just uploaded the last of my Japan pictures. One gallery is for the last few weeks of IES, including the Sayonara party, and the last for the final week I had after classes were over. Enjoy. Japan sure was a lot of fun.

The Nickname list

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You know, this is probably a bad idea, but I’m doin’ it anyway. Here folks, is the complete list of the IES 2004 Fall nicknames, coined by the A-Team. I’m only including the ones I can rememeber, or that actually lasted more than a day or two (ie, Aniki is not listed for Derek; it didn’t stick) Guys: if I happened to leave one out (esp the Bekkas), feel free to Comment and add it.

IES Students:

Starey; Fat Albert/Jeff Goldblum; Shadow Eyes; Russian; Hermoine/Ugly Shadow Eyes; Otouto; Goose/FOB/Geoffrey/Giraffe/FOBulous; Dark Seth; 3-Seater/San-Seki; NL/Naughty Librarian; Kindergarten Teacher/Ari’s Ex; Fabulous/Hot Pants/Fab; 80’s Business Man; Miss Piggy/Muppet/Fluffy; Hirose’s Daughter; Kaicho/Oyabun; Terminator; Side of Beef/SOB/Gyuukaku; Googgly/Googles; Alb/Albino; Mangina; Molestache; Smithers; Uncle Hokuro/Hokuro Jiisan/Hokuro-kun/Moley; KakkoWarui Ben; Gut; Squirrly Joe; Southern Gentleman/Southern Comfort/SoCo; Smilie-kun; Harry Potter/Dirty Harry; German; Hippy Graham; Dirty Hippy/Hippy Girl; Crazy Ass Bitch; Hobbit; Splinter; Arnold; Potato Boy

(This doesn’t include people who don’t have nicknames, but still suck)


The 3 Ks; Ostrich; Jafar; Urkel; T-Rex; Froggy; Antonio Banderas; Other Caleb


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I’m home now (in St. Louis). Actually, I had written a fairly good post before I left Japan, but for some reason it got erased or something. Nevertheless, I’ll try to remember most of it and assimilate it into this post. Originally I wanted to put some closure to the semester. I’ll do that with this too.

This past fall really has been one of the best semesters ever. If it weren’t for the people and friends I met there, it would have been totally different and definitely not as fun (go A-Team!). It sounds really stupid, but when I first found out I was going to go to Japan for a semester and stuff, one of my main worries was the people I’d be going with. I knew that there would be a lot of social inepts, a lot of huge anime freaks, and a lot of the type of people that I just in general don’t like. Oh, and I was right. However, aside from these, I also found a good group of people who were just as twisted as I am, and thus the A-Team was formed and life was good. We took the place over (both figuratively and symbolically; need I mention the Nagano Bus, meals at the ryokans, and Y’s bar/Sayonara party). Yeah, we were just that awesome.

I definitely want to go back to Japan sometime soon. Maybe after graduating and finding a job that will send me over there. I’m pretty certain that I don’t want to do JET, but something else, peferrably marketing or business would be great. Willing to relocate? Definitely, at least for a few years. Actually, if I can find an internship or some kind of paid thing to go there next May, then I’ll do that also. Seth and Ari will still be there, so it will be fun times. I’m interested to see what kind of people those guys get for the spring IES semester. Most likely, it will be a bunch of scabes and a few good guys.

I’ll be posting the final set(s) of IES Japan pictures within the next day or two. I also have a feeling that more people from IES are probably reading this Blog one way or another. Good or bad, I don’t care. Actually, I’m thinking of posting a full list of nicknames. Maybe just the nicknames, and not the real names. I don’t think I’d get any slack for that, bwahahahaha. Ari, Seth, Bryan, Mikey: what do you think?

I really got used to living in Japan. The whole living part isn’t really as different as you would think. Maybe it’s because my Japanese is semi-usable, but other than that, it’s just like moving to any new city. Sure there are trains rather than cars, stuff is more expensive, food is smaller and tastes strange sometimes, but living is living. That really didn’t strike me as hard or different. I think I’m happy and capable of living in the US or in Japan. They really are about the same to me. Too bad I have friends and all of that in both; I can’t BE in both places, so I might have to spend my life as a traveler. Doesn’t sound bad, if I could make some money.

When I flew back into Dallas this morning before my connecting flight back to St. Louis, it really didn’t seem like it’s been that long since the morning when I took off. Man it really has been a long time though. A lot has happened, a lot has changed. I guess I’m still the exact same as I always have been. Studying abroad is supposed to be a life-changing experience. Yeah I guess kinda. But there’s also supposed to be all that “culture shock” BS that they talk about, and I don’t go through any of that. Probably because I’ve been here and back 5 times. Either way, it’s been a blast.

Now it’s time for Christmas with the family, my birthday (turning 21), and a few days hanging out at home before I have to pack up and haul out to IU and my new apartment. I have a feeling that this spring at IU is going to be one of the best semesters ever also. Maybe I’m just getting to the point where I can enjoy life more. OK nevermind, that sounds retarded. I think it’s going to be a good semester just because I’m awesome. Yeah, I think this post turned out better than the original that I wrote and lost. It’s certainly a lot longer. From now on the blog posts will be a bit more mundane, more full of complaints and weird observations, and will probably be less frequent. Oh, and I’ll set the timezone back to Indiana time now…

Another sad goodbye

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Just got back from Gyotoku. Took Kanako there for my last Ramen and Gyoza set from Bikkuri. I don’t know what was sadder: saying goodbye to the restaurant or to Kanako. Oh who am I kidding; it was Bikkuri Ramen. I’ll miss their 189 yen ramen or gyoza.

Oh, and in other news, I’m totally boned on this packing. I have about 3 hours until they are going to come and pick up my 2 big suitcases, which means I have to have the majority of my packing done by then. Oh and the post office is closed today since it’s ANOTHER random holiday, so I’ll have to rush tomorrow morning before I leave to go there and ship a box or two back home. There’s no way all of this is going to fit in the suitcases.

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