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Alethea & Athena
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24th-Aug-2016 02:01 pm - Noragami volume 16
We're posting a little early today because Gaston is in the area as we speak and we might disappear and go to Disneyland at any moment. But the next book on our list for Review Rednesdays is Noragami 16, and there's no way we're going to pass that up! Spoiler level: moderate?

Noragami volume 16Collapse )

Oh man, this series. So good. So, so good.

Today I'm thankful for getting to go back and read our review of Noragami 16, getting to go to Disneyland with Gaston, making good enough progress on work so far that it looks like this detour isn't going to totally destroy us, that Japanese Febreze commercial, and remembering that we have neat RDJ shirts to wear to Disneyland today.
23rd-Aug-2016 05:37 pm - Planning
I guess I was planning to mention this as soon as I got the link, which I think was yesterday, but then I guess I forgot or something, because it didn't occur to me. Anyway, here is the link to the article where we tell the story of how we learned Japanese. I don't really have a whole lot else to say about it, though, because it's all in the article. ...On the other hand, we only read what the other translators said, because we didn't feel the need to reread what we wrote, so it's possible that some edits have been made that change the entire tone! I did notice that Justin went ahead and italicized "Sailor Moon". We do tend to get careless about stuff like that, which is either because we're not editors or why we're not editors.

In other news, we're going to Japan in about a week! How did that happen so fast? Well, because we were a little impulsive and planned to go on a not-too-faraway date, that's how. Planning is also progressing on that front. Kyoya had already made a Facebook event page for the roadtrip he's planning that weekend. We haven't had the patience to read all the websites for the places we'll be going, but we do know capybaras will be involved. Since the main motivation for this trip was a Noragami art show, this seems all too appropriate.

Also, we have just two books we need to finish before we go. Well, technically we only have to finish one before we go, but it would be smarter to finish both of them. I think we're making pretty good progress, but since Gaston is coming to town for a Disneyland trip this week, there's no telling how that could affect things. It's the last two volumes of Corpse Party, and because of weird timing issues yesterday, we had extra time when we finished the first draft of volume nine today. Instead of heading straight into the edit or taking the rest of the day off, we decided to start on volume ten, and man is it getting intense. And just at the most dramatic part! our playlist ended and we decided to call it a day. We'll be starting our volume nine edit tomorrow, so it may be a while before we get back to it.

And this is by no means a way of saying that the series isn't gripping enough to compel us to go on. I am really curious to see how this all plays out. But we are also very tired, so not working wins.

Today I'm thankful for getting to tell the manga/anime loving world (or at least the readers over at The OASG) how we learned Japanese, having plans for what promises to be another fun roadtrip in Japan, having plans to go to Disneyland with friends, learning that you can exchange Stitch Fix clothes, and getting to take the evening off.
22nd-Aug-2016 05:39 pm - Pin Quest 2016
Turns out maybe we didn't quite have the energy for a trip to Disneyland today after all. We're both very tired. Maybe it would have been okay, but these days Disneyland can sometimes be emotionally draining, and this time it was. Why? Because of Pin Quest. Or maybe it was just the humidity. But let's talk about Pin Quest.

The concept is pretty great. You buy a starter pack, which consists of a pin lanyard that has no pins, but it does have a decoder medallion and a fancy zipper pocket that says Pin Quest on it that you can put your quest tickets in. You cannot, however, put the other part of the starter pack--the all-important map--inside the pocket (at least not without folding it extra times), because the default fold leaves it just barely too big to get past the zipper pull on the pocket, alas. (Maybe if we tried inserting it diagonally, but then how would we ever get it out again? Diagonally?)

So the starter pack costs about fifteen dollars, but unless you want a kinda neat pin lanyard and slightly unusual map of the park, it's not going to do you a whole lot of good. To do the quest properly, you have to buy the ticket with the first clue. Solve the clue, and you get a pin that will lead you to the location of the next ticket. See, it all sounds super cool, right? Until you realize that you can just buy all the tickets at every store, so what's even the point, am I right? Well, the point is exclusive pins, but I don't care about exclusive pins, I care about video game style side quests that earn me neat rewards...which may or may not be pins.

There are two other major drawbacks to the whole ticket system, the first of which being the price. It's ten bucks for a ticket. That's actually not so bad when you consider that you get the pin at no additional cost, but that brings me to the second drawback, which is that the pins seem a little on the cheap side. I mean, I'm no expert, so it's possible that the exceptionally lightweight metal is not cheap aluminum, but some super high-tech, extremely durable alloy. So maybe I'm passing judgment too quickly. I actually like the designs pretty well--they each have a character to represent the store where you got them, with a symbol in the background that matches the one that the cast members stamp on your map at each location when you solve a clue.

And "clue" reminds me that the pins weren't actually the second drawback. They were just the real reason behind the first drawback. The second drawback is that the clues are kinda boring. We only did half the quest, because we had reevaluate whether or not we wanted to spend the money to do the whole quest. I mean, I like the pin designs, but the hula girl on the pin from the It's a Small World shop was totally off-model. But anyway, the clues, at least for the first half of the quest, are all, "Look around the store and answer this super easy question." On the one hand, it is kind of a nice way to draw guests' attention to the detail they put into decorating all the stores, and I do think that sort of thing ought to be appreciated. But on the other hand, the Small World clue was about a poster, and that store has the cutest non-poster decorations!

And that reminds me of what really had me disheartened about the whole thing. The cast member at the Small World store had to tell us that the clue on the ticket had been misprinted (because if he didn't tell us, we would have spent hours (or minutes, before we gave up and asked...or just gave up) trying to find the poster in question). So first we learn that they couldn't even do enough quality control to make sure none of the clues (you know, clues--where it's super important to get the details right if you don't want to mislead anybody) had mistakes. And second, he had to warn us that one of the other tickets had a misprint, too. Really, Disneyland? I expected better from you. That and the overpriced pins had us rethinking whether or not we wanted to let the park keep swindling us.

Aaaanyway, if we decide to finish the quest, there are three pins left to go as part of the quest itself, and when we finish, we'll get the completer pin! ...Only not really. We'll get the right to buy the completer pin. So let me rephrase: When we finish, they'll let us buy the completer pin! I seem to remember the Disney Parks Blog saying the completer pins was another $20 or so... The helpful cast member on Main Street told us that the whole quest was like $84, so maybe the completer pin is the same as the others.

And so, in sum, it's a really fun idea and I like the concept so very very much. But I feel like I'm being ripped off, and I don't like that so much. I mean, if the clues were at least more interesting and/or involved... And yet, we are completists, so we're torn about it. But Gaston will be coming down later this week, so we'll have another chance to decide before too long. It's only going on "while supplies last", after all.

Today I'm thankful for at least getting to see what Pin Quest was all about, buying some delicious cookies on the way home (not from Disneyland; we were done giving them money...for today), getting to go on Alice in Wonderland, making fairly good progress on Corpse Party despite taking the morning off, and it being time to take a break.
21st-Aug-2016 05:46 pm - Stitch Fix the second
Today we are going to talk about the return of the Stitch Fix. I think the timing of our first Stitch Fix was a little bad, because it was forever before we got a good chance to wear the new clothes that we got. We brought them to Anime Expo in case we ended up going to dinner with people, but that didn't happen, so instead we wore our new tops when we went to see Gaston in Beauty and the Beast. Steve took a picture to post on his Facebook while we were waiting for the show to start, and some people commented on how much they loved our tops. In fact, they inspired our little sister to order a Stitch Fix of her own.

Well, now that someone we know is ordering Stitch Fix, of course we have to get more, and besides, we're going to Japan soon and it will probably still be too warm for the heat tech and sweaters that we wore on our last trip, so it might be nice to get a new Stitch Fix so we'll have more nice, non-t-shirt tops to wear. (Not that we don't like our t-shirts, of course. I think we might wear our Chip and Dale shirts when we go to Disneyland.)

Anyway, the new fix arrived yesterday, so we got to see the new clothes our stylist picked for us! The box was heavy, so we were pretty sure there was another pair of jeans. This deduction turned out to be correct, and now we each have our own pair of expensive jeans to wear! Woohoo! (Or we will when we go fill out the survey and make our payment.)

But before we got to the jeans, first we saw the bracelet that was included. It's called an infinity something, because it was clearly inspired by the infinity symbol. Sometimes we're wary of modern jewelry, because we don't like it to be too clunky, but this bracelet was not that, and we like it a lot!

Then we pulled out the dress! We got a dress this time, and that makes me happy. It's a purple dress (verging toward red violet, but not magenta) with a diamond pattern in lighter purple, and it's a wrap style. The neckline goes a little lower than we like, but that can be fixed with a nice camisole or other undershirt. In fact, my only complaint about it is that the style is named Renesme. Now I don't have anything against the Twilight series (although based on my reaction to Frozen, that might change if I were to actually read the series), and in fact that anti-Twilight sentiment got to be so strong that I almost wanted to be a fan in spite of it, but I have always hated that name. It just is not a pretty name. But that's not really an issue, because as far as I know, the only people who refer to dresses by the design name are the people selling them.

And we got two more tops. The first one is a very cute sort of t-shirt but made of nicer fabric which is off-white with navy blue stripes, and the shoulders and sleeves are a solid blue. It also has a solid navy blue pocket, which, according to the picture on the fashion card, goes in the normal pocket place. But apparently this particular shirt was inspected by Death the Kid, because for some reason the pocket was in the center of the shirt. I'm really not sure how I feel about that. Athena says having it in the center separates the breasts nicely, but we're not sure that's a look we really want to go for. I think we'll mention something about it in the survey and maybe we can get it replaced or something. On the other hand, maybe a pocket in the center of the chest is fine? I really don't know anything about fashion.

(Also, if you don't know why Death the Kid would have moved the pocket to the center, then go watch Soul Eater, because it's a super awesome anime and is available on Netflix (at least it was; hopefully it still is). He comes in in the third episode, so it won't be much of a time commitment. And if you can't commit to three episodes, you could probably skip the second episode, and if you can't commit to two, you could skip the first one, too, because the first three episodes are all kind of stand-alones. But you should watch all of them, because Soul Eater is awesome.)

Finally, we got a top that is all gray on the front, and partway down the back. Just below the shoulder blades, though, the fabric switches to a sheer white with gray spots. We've never been a fan of sheer tops in any way, but it could look cute with the right bright color underneath. We're going to keep it, because it's a good excuse to buy more super comfy under layers from Uniqlo, but I think we'll say in our survey that we don't want any more, or if they're going to send something sheer, send something to wear under it.

And that concludes our report on this installment of Stitch Fix. Maybe one day we'll start taking pictures.

Today I'm thankful for having more cute clothes (I think for our next Stitch Fix we might ask for another dress so we can each have one), amusing reasons that the pocket may have been misplaced, getting to finish watching Soul Eater Not last night, finding out that we did have triple-A batteries after all, and now having batteries in our Moogle lamp.
20th-Aug-2016 05:26 pm - Minor excitement
Life continues to be exciting but not in ways that can really be expressed on the internet. We swept our floors! Woohoo! ...Maybe if we'd taken before and after pictures, it would be more 'net-worthy, because let me tell you, it is exciting. And it's especially exciting because we hadn't done it in so long...eh heh heh...

But now we feel more justified in taking time off to go to Disneyland on Monday. Actually, before our passes got blocked out for the summer, we went one morning to go on the new Soarin' Around the World, and we remembered how much we like the park when it's not that crowded, and people like to sleep in, so it's never all that crowded right around opening, so maybe it would be nice to make it a point to go to the park in the morning, like once a week. We'd get out of the apartment and get some exercise! If we want to be really gung-ho about the exercise, we could even make it a point to climb Tarzan's Treehouse every time! ...We'll see about that one.

...And I think that's about all I can think of to write about for today. Today I'm thankful for our Stitch Fix arriving today, our grocery store have donut holes on sale, those donut holes giving us plenty of energy with which to do our chores, our floors being swept (and mopped!), and having Reese Sticks to look forward to later.
19th-Aug-2016 02:31 pm - Singed but triumphant
We did it! We finished the super long list of books that we had to translate! Nine books in a month, wowie. Actually, we're a little frustrated because under normal circumstances we would have finished the last one even sooner than today. We were hoping to finish it yesterday, and then get a head start on Corpse Party. We have to finish the next volume of that before we go to Japan, and the one after that is due two days after we get back, so the smart thing would be to finish that before we go, too. It's kind of funny, because we started Corpse Party right before we went to Japan in January, and now we're set to finish it right before (or right after) we go again.

Last night we finally pulled out the fortune-telling chocolate, which we knew was sort of a risk because we know it's just a game, but when we have big stuff going on, we tend to take things like that a little too seriously. Athena says she thinks it's one of those things that we take seriously and not seriously at the same time. Like if it agrees with how things are going or seem like they will be going, I take it as confirmation from the universe, and if it doesn't, I just shrug it off. This time a lot of it seemed like, "Yeah, we already knew that." So when we popped out the candy for okozukai (spending money) and the fortune was an X (bad luck), we were like, "...Yeah, we already knew that. Did you see our vet bill?" But we can't help getting our hopes up that we popped out the one for ryokou (travel) and it gave us a double circle (very good luck)! But of course, any trip that involves DisneySea is bound to be a good one.

...So that's a little look at our attitude toward that sort of fortune-telling game. And I'm not sure I have a whole lot else to talk about. Oh! Except that Justin Stroman is doing an article about how anime and manga translators learned Japanese, and we're going to be a part of it! Tadah! He thinks it's going to go up on Monday, so those of you who don't know can learn all about how we learned Japanese! He also told us ours was the longest answer. Nothing is ever simple with us, I guess.

Today I'm thankful for finishing our long list of deadlines, talk of new assignments, fun little games that involve chocolate, the USPS website working again, and our new Stitch Fix being on its way.
18th-Aug-2016 06:17 pm - Cut off
We wrote a post for LiveJournal an hour ago! Read on to find out why!

The latest in the string of happenings this week is an internet outage. Tadah! It's kind of a funny reminder of how much we use the internet in our daily lives. Now would be a good opportunity to unplug from all the distractions and do some chores, but we're not quite ready to do that, so we're writing a LiveJournal entry on notepad (to be posted later, when the internet is back) instead.

Not that I knew what I was going to write about anyway. I was going to talk about our newest Tokyo Treat box, though, because we're pretty excited about it! I think we might not be too weirded out by everything in the box! The iffiest thing is the Pretz, which, if we're reading the label correctly, is a "mild roast" flavor. It could mean they roasted the breadsticks mildly, but it could mean, like, a pot roast. I don't know. We'll find out later! We also got some honey butter flavored potato chips! We were so excited to see it, because the milk potato chips from last month were amazing! I've been flashing back to them all day. There was an apology letter in the box telling us why we got honey butter potato chips instead of wasabi ones, and we were like, "Are you kidding? Honey butter is way better than wasabi!" Not that we've ever had wasabi, but we're a lot less afraid to try honey butter.

We also got some "mugipon", which looks like popped wheat, and is milk coffee flavored. So that one's kind of iffy, being coffee, but I think it will be okay, since it's not a drink. There were some watermelon gummies, and some Torotto, which one of our new friends from Japan shared with us when we went to the Fox Village together. The ones she had were the regular plain chocolate ones, but these ones have a mango filling. We don't always like mango, but sometimes mango is great, so I'm excited. We really likesd the regular chocolate Torottos. The idea behind them is to have chocolates that don't melt in your hands, so they're kind of like a hybrid of chocolate and cookie. And we didn't remember what they were called when our friend shared them with us, so we're really happy that Tokyo Treat sent us some!

But back to this internet outage thing. The time is mildly frustrating, because we were getting pretty close to finishing the volume of My Monster Secret that we were working on. We can do a lot without the internet, but there could still be some stuff that we'd have to highlight to return to and fix later, and that's just annoying, so we might as well save it all for later and go do something else in the meantime.

Anyway, Athena just reminded me that we have some interesting books that have been waiting to be read...and we still have some video games to get through. So we have a lot we can do without the internet, and I think we'll take advantage.

Today I'm thankful for the latest Tokyo Treat box, a reminder of what those things were that our friends shared with us on the way to the Fox Village, having some concrete plans to go to Disneyland next week (twice, actually...), honey butter potato chips (I don't know if I like them yet, but I like the concept), and an internet provider sponsored evening off from work. [Also thankful that the internet is back.]
17th-Aug-2016 06:31 pm - Your Lie in April volume 8
Things continue to be hectic. The dentist told me to make sure to give her a whole hour today, which was fine because we didn't have any other plans for any set time. What wasn't fine is that the appointment actually took two hours, and it was a lot more involved than I realized. And I have to go back in about two weeks for what I sincerely hope is the last part of this process.

But anyway, today is Review Rednesday! So let's have some Your Lie in April to help us feel better. Spoiler level: moderately high.

Your Lie in April volume 8Collapse )

Today I'm thankful for being done at the dentist for today, our Tokyo Treat box arriving, there being a fairly decent chance that we can finish My Monster Secret tomorrow without too much trouble (finishing it on Friday would be okay, too), having some Carnation Instant Breakfast now that I'm hungry but don't want to bother too much with food, and it being time to go lie down.
16th-Aug-2016 05:37 pm - Slightly unusual day
I think today has been a lot better for everyone, even with the orthodontist appointment. It went quickly and was followed by Joe's Italian Ice, so no complaints there. They were even having a Free Taco Tuesday...which we did not take advantage of, because we don't like food.

Page seems to be doing better...I think. She never really seemed to be doing all that badly until we gave her a flea treatment. Yesterday the vet asked if she was acting any different or having any trouble of the kind you might expect from parasites, but the answers were all no. He checked her heart and her tummy and said everything seemed fine. She did hide from us almost all day today, though, possibly to make sure we didn't whisk her away to uncomfortable places with yapping dogs again. But not before she hung out with us for a while and even rolled over onto her back to let us know she was feeling comfortable enough to do that kind of thing, so things are going pretty well on that front.

We still have a ton of other things to take care of, though, including but not limited to the translation we have due on Monday, which is taking forever by our usual standards. We would have finished the first draft today if we hadn't been so busy doing other non-work things. We haven't taken more than two days to finish a first draft in like a year. ...Well, except maybe the last time we did My Monster Secret. This series always takes forever. There's just so much talking!

We've also been asked to help with an article, but I won't say more about it because I don't know if the author wants to surprise people or not. And we had to finish filling out that thing I mentioned yesterday where the agency wanted us to update our profile. They wanted translation samples, so we took a break from it so we could decide what would be the best sample, and then we kind of forgot about it because of the whirlwind. We remembered it today, and remembered that we wanted to go with the scene from Noragami: Stray Stories where Yato confronts the serial killer. I'm not sure if it's a good sample of our translation skills, per se, since it seems like a pretty straightforward translation (I have memories of it being very easy), but it is a very funny scene.

And that's all I guess. Today is just one of those slightly unusual days.

Today I'm thankful for getting to go to Joe's Italian Ice, Page emerging from hiding, making fairly decent progress on work today considering, intimidating emails that turn out not to be scary at all, and fond memories of Stray Stories.
15th-Aug-2016 08:39 pm - Bad days for everyone
They actually weren't all that bad, just uncomfortable. Well, I'm assuming. I couldn't say for sure in Page's case. We did some googling and discovered that based on some other things we've noticed, Page probably has tapeworms. We looked into the possibility of over-the-counter medication for it, but all the websites said, "Whatever you do, do NOT use OTC wormers for your cat! Take your cat to the vet!" Well, this was stressful for us because we didn't know how we could get to the vet, but fortunately our good friend who drives us to church every week was willing to take us there after work. We couldn't get a hold of her until about one, though, so we were stressing about it until then.

On the bright side, all the worrying about Page helped me forget about the worrying I was doing for myself! I had a dentist's appointment today to see about finally getting the crown on my root canalled tooth. I was terrified about it, though, because I'm told it's a "guarded prognosis", which means there's no telling how long it will last. What I haven't been told is what the consequences of its failure to last are, so when I'm thinking about it, I'm worried that I have some kind of a time bomb in my mouth. When I go so far as to think about it logically, I figure the worst that will happen is severe pain and an implant, which doesn't sound too bad in general, but after all the work I've had done is not something I'm ready to face. So I was really scared that I'd go to the dentist and they'd give me some terrible news about this tooth.

Fortunately, the appointment went mostly well. At first they told me they might not do anything; first they wanted to look at it. So they looked at it and said they would check the x-rays to make sure everything was okay, and if it was, they'd go ahead and do the final impression for the crown. Woohoo! The bad news is that it would have taken too long--we had a veterinarian appointment to get to! So now I have to go back on Wednesday, which is only annoying because this week has been hectic enough as it is, and I also have an orthodontist appointment tomorrow. Also, I'm going to get my teeth cleaned, which I hope is going to fix... Okay, so when the assistant was putting the temporary cap back on my tooth, she saw something that she wanted to point out to the dentist. So while I was rinsing the cement from the old temporary cap out of my mouth, the dentist said that the assistant wanted to show her something so I had to go sit back down. She knows I'm paranoid, though, so she told me, "Everything's normal, it's fine." But I know she knows I'm paranoid, which means now I can't trust her. But I think the assistant was referring to the tartar buildup I have going on, which I agree is unreasonable. She didn't even look at the x-ray, so I still don't know how that is, but it looked pretty much the same as what I remember from when they did the root canal, so hopefully it's all good.

But anyway, we had to get back home and wrangle the cat to take her to the vet. She was very well-behaved, and the veterinarian was very nice. He gave her an injection for tapeworms and some medicine for us to give her for the other common intestinal parasites, and in the meantime, I should cut this for TMI-ness.Collapse )

I expressed my concerns about contagion, and he said yeah, just wash your hands. We're pretty good about that, but I couldn't just let it go, because there are these egg sac things that we've seen in the bed, which Athena has always noticed right away and never touched without a disinfecting alcohol wipe on hand, but I was like, "What if we accidentally get one in our mouth while we're sleeping?" And based on the vet's attitude, it was a kind of amused but understanding, "Oh, you're one of the paranoid ones." So he gave us a list of precautions which are pretty obvious, but now we're like, "Do we have to do those if we don't want to die!?" but based on his first answer, we think it's probably not that life-or-death. Needless to say, our bedding is in the laundry.

Anyway, while we were at a vet anyway, we got Page updated on her vaccines, so now we can watch Old Yeller without being too terrified for her safety afterwards. On the other hand, why would we ever want to watch Old Yeller again? (Because it's a great movie about coming of age and learning to deal with the really hard things in life. But my goodness is it sad.)

And now we have to put our laundry in the dryer. Today I'm thankful for getting a ride to the vet, the dentist appointment going okay, Page being safely home from the vet, understanding veterinarians (also, one of the techs told us that like every other patient these days is coming in with worms, so we don't feel like horrible pet owners), and the big washing machine being free tonight.
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