Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Aligned Family




Dungeons and Dragons Alignments applied to our family:

Mrs. Sunshine - Lawful Good
"A Lawful Good character typically acts with compassion, and always with honor and a sense of duty"

Mr. Salaryman - Neutral
" A farmer whose primary overriding concern is to feed his family is of this alignment"

Little Ms. Sunshine - Lawful Evil
"A Lawful Evil character sees a well-ordered system as being easier to exploit, and shows a combination of desirable and undesirable traits"

Salaryman Jnr. - Chaotic Evil
"A Chaotic Evil character tends to have no respect for rules, other people's lives, or anything but their own desires, which are typically selfish and cruel"


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Monday, March 17, 2014

Shotgun Meeting

...a quick business advice...
Bringing a certified legal rep to a meeting is the same as bringing a shotgun to a meeting. It will be difficult to speak one's mind...

End advice.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, March 7, 2014

A Review

One of these is mine...
Earlier in the week we went to see a performance put on by little Ms. Sunshine and her Kindergarten class. In case you are thinking of going, here comes a review for you to make you informed consumers:

The props were amateurish and looked like they had been reused a hundred times, costumes were limited to stupid paper hats and looked like they were made by small children.

Over half of the performers did not sing when they were supposed to and several completely ignored it and wandered about aimlessly instead. The ones that actually sung were completely out of tone.

The dancing numbers were completely out of synch, that is, for the few performers that actually bothered to try and dance.

The only redeeming feature was that the piano playing adult actually could tinker out some simple melodies.

All in all, it was a horrible performance which I cannot recommend to anyone. For lovers of fine art this was an insult of a performance.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Future of Entertainment is here!

The future of gaming, in the past!
When think of it, it strikes me as a little odd that I haven't really posted more on the topic, but the truth is that I am a gamer. Not the obnoxious type who loves Japanese Role Playing Games though, and I embrace the fact that it is practically a waste of time! I do not play games to grow as a person or challenge myself, I do it because it keeps me entertained for a bit and a happy Salaryman is a good Salaryman. Playing computer/video games is by far my favorite way to entertain myself and has been from when we got our first Spectrum ZX81 home computer. The hour between when the kids and Mrs. Sunshine fall asleep until I go to bed is my gaming time and when I can relax a bit from all the other stuff.

So, for me as a gamer, the recent launch of the Playstation 4 is a big event (and yes, I am somewhat of a Sony PS fanboy, screw xbox!). Probably due to the delayed launch in Japan, almost four months after the US launch, I could order my Playstation off the Sony online store just a week before the launch and got it delivered before lunch last Saturday without having to stand in a line or camp outside!

The thing about new consoles is that usually they are crap when they come out. The user interface and features are not fully implemented and the first wave of games are usually junk. However, I tend to forget this and get swept up in the excitement only to be disappointed that things are basically the same, only with a little prettier graphics.

As I was checking through what the new and improved Playstation had to offer, I found the Playstation streaming TV stations. Basically it’s meant for people to show what they are playing and give their fantastic commentary while doing it. But when I checked it out the number one watched show was that of an American family sitting in front of their TV, having the Playstation camera film them while they are sitting around reading the comments that people wrote to them. Occasionally the overweight lady would flash her boobs, whipping the commenters to a frenzy of “do it again!”, “more” etc. while the guy kept drinking his booze. After a few minutes a younger woman that looked a bit like Ms. American teen pregnancy joined the group in the sofa and also started into the screen while people wrote “you new girl, show your boobs too!” and similar comments at a breathtaking pace.

The whole thing was mesmerizing. I could not stop watching. It was like Youtube with even lower production values and completely devoid of any point. This is the future of Entertainment and again I felt at peace with my purchase.


Yesterday evening I turned it on again, but their show was gone and it felt empty… 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Help! My Children are Japanese! Episode I

Typical Japanese children
The Salaryman family live in our little housing community in the outskirts of Tokyo in an area populated almost exclusively by Japanese. I have seen one white British guy on a few occasions who lives somewhere in the area and our neighbor with a Chinese wife, but that's basically it.

The environment that little Ms. Sunshine and Salaryman Jnr. are growing up in a typical modern Japanese one, but I was anyway hoping that they might grow up with a little broader view of the world than most Japanese kids. However, it seems like my hopes were futile and in this fantastic brand new series I will document the key moments where I have come to realized that my offspring are Japanese...

A few months back I was sent back to the old country for business and since my visit was for a few weeks and the home office very accommodating and helpful, I decided to bring the whole Salaryman family over as a team-building exercise. Some of Mrs. Sunshine's main concerns were the lack of proper Japanese rice in Sweden and the lack of a bath tub in the apartment we were going to stay. I swiftly ignored her concerns with a casual "they're kids, they'll eat whatever cheap rice we put in their feeding through and won't even notice!" and "they'll be fine without a bath, they have strong Swedish genes in them!".

I think it goes without saying that I was wrong... Terribly wrong...

We first tried with regular non-sticky long corned rice but that was met with a frowned nose and refusal to eat by little Ms. Sunshine and Jnr. Salaryman throwing the rice all over the room except in his mouth. Next, we tried with jasmine rice which I sheepishly thought might be received a little more favorably, but again frowning faces and rice ending up all over the room. Finally relenting, we resorted to buying expensive "sushi rice" which was the only thing we could find in the area where we stayed. Annoyingly for me the kids launched into that as hungry wolves while Mrs. Sunshine gave me a "told you so" stare.

That's not to mention the struggle to get the kids in the shower after the dinner. The screams of terror, fear and desperation that we had to endure every day during shower time we have not experienced since that time. After a few days of going through this I was starting to despair and went to a local toy store and luckily found (despite it being off summer season) a small inflatable pool that would fit into the shower room. 

Again... With the inflatable pool inserted as a poor bathtub substitute, the kids turned from miserable hellions to smiling angels, happily giggling away and again cooperating all of a sudden. Of course, while I got the "told you so" stare again from Mrs. Sunshine...

I should just have the bathtub physically removed from our house, after a few years they should been weaned off it!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The Top 3 Most Annoying Kid's Shows in Japan - Number Two

You might have thought that things were bad enough with Happy Crappy, but believe me, there are worse things out there... Today we have reached number two of the most annoying kid's shows in Japan on my list.

2. Anpanman
Almost like the Justice League

It might be that I have lived in Japan so long now and have been exposed to so much Anpanman, but my feeling is that this character is by now relatively well known even outside of Japan? I might be wrong, but for those of you who are not familiar with Anpanman, it is a picture book turned cartoon show starring mostly characters made out of some form of bread. The lead character Anpanman is a superhero flying around helping people and fighting his archenemy "Baikinman" (Bacteria Man) who cooks up various devious plans to destroy all that is good. If I tune out and don't think about it the show is not that bad. It's pretty standard fare with Anpanman, together with his friends, helping out someone and thwarting the plans of Baikinman. Baikinman is not completely evil either but more mischievous.

To call the show "annoying" might actually be a bit wrong as I find it a little more disturbing than annoying... The premise of the show with a superhero who is made out of a Japanese sweet bread is odd enough, but that Anpanman sometimes takes pieces of his own head to feed friends in need and that when his head gets dirty (Anpanman's own Kryptonite which makes him lose his powers) his baker Overlord Mr. Jam just bakes up a new head which promptly replaces the old head is bordeline grotesque... Not to mention that most of the characters in the show are based on something edible, little Ms. Sunshine is especially fond of Hamburger-Kid for some reason...

The other annoying thing, which is not directly related to the show, is the extent in which Anpanman permeates the life of people like me with small children. Everything is Anpanman: clothes, toys, candy and even the Kindergarten uses Anpanman characters for decoration and in their games (certainly without paying any licensing fees, those thieves). 

Rating
Sexiness: Nothing. 0 out of 5 stars
Pointlessness: The show usually does have some form of point and a story to tell so this is not where I find this show the most troubling 3 out of 5 stars.
Characters: This is where things start to get disturbing with Curry Bread Man, Cream Panda (a pun on "pan" which means "bread" in Japanese), Infant Baby Man etc. -5 out of 5 stars
Total Score: I give it 1 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Top 3 Most Annoying Kid's Shows in Japan - Number Three

As you can imagine, I am nowadays more often than not exposed to Japanese kid's TV shows. There are shows that I might not find particularly entertaining myself, but which I recognize as reasonable entertainment for the kids. For instance, the kid's shows on NHK are of reasonable quality and even if they become a bit grating upon the 103rd time of watching I do not actively hate them (thinking of the Wanwan show, With Mommy (おかあさんといっしょ), Play in English (英語であそぼう) etc.). But there are shows that I am more actively annoyed by and will list them here in the hopes that some of the annoyance will rub off on you.

So, I will present the Top Three Most Annoying Kid's Shows in Japan for your education and as a possible warning for those with small children considering a move to Japan... Here comes place number three with the rest to follow!


3. Happy Crappy
Yep, it's Crappy Alright!

The name is great, I give them that much. I admit that I actually have no idea why they have chosen the title of "Crappy", there might be some meaning in Japanese of this that pass completely above my head (Ok, I guess it could be "Clappy" but "Crappy" is way more suitable here). Happy Crappy is shown on the cable channel Kid's Station and I see it as a little flashier and fast moving version of the NHK kid's shows. Basically a lot of singing, some English and stupid characters. In fact, the stupid characters are what annoys me most with this show. Not only the cute mascots, but also the guest characters in the form of the odd robot man, the Power Ranger like things and the most annoying jungle characters. I admit that I feel that I have not yet adequately conveyed the awfulness of this show, but the below opening theme might convince you?




Rating
Sexiness: Ok, this is one of the few areas where this show wins, the host girl looks a little sexier and sluttier than in most shows, but it's still only degrees in hell. 2 of 5 stars.
Pointlessness: This is where this show wins, I am not sure if they want to sing songs, tell stories or what they want to do. Thankfully the offspring seem to feel the same way as they are not too attached to this show. 1 of 5 stars.
Characters: Awful... Plain horrible, just see the picture and watch the video if you are not convinced...
Total Score: I give it 1.5 out of 5 stars

My advice is to avoid at all costs. Usually you can just switch to a recorded NHK show and the kids will thank you for it without putting up a fight. That is the only redeeming quality of this show.


Monday, February 10, 2014

I'm back!

How can it be?!
I have given it long a thoughtful consideration and have decided to once again revive the blog! However there will be a slight shift in focus as I still cannot really write that much about work. Instead I will focus a little more on the perils of being the father of small children here in Japan, something of which there is plenty of craziness involved.

As little Ms. Sunshine and Salaryman Jnr. now have grown to considerable size (for a 4 and 2 year old anyway) and started develop, what I interpret as , personality, and in the broadest possible meaning of the word, interests, means that I am from time to time exposed to their interesting world.

Also, to our great surprise, the little critters have also started to actually sleep at relatively reasonable hours at an almost (!?) predictable time, this has also freed up a little time when I don't need to try to entertain/sedate a rowdy offspring and can instead write blog posts in poor grammar for your entertainment.

Hopefully some of my former readers will at least find something mildly interesting in this new direction and those who are not probably have moved on to bigger and better things anyway in this nasty harsh post-blogging climate. I thought about changing the name of the blog, but since I am still something of a salaryman (although it could be argued that I left that behind me) and "The Adventures of a Foreign Father in Japan" doesn't really sound that great...

Monday, June 17, 2013

Groping by proxy, great idea, great execution - poor outcome

It's OK, he's in on it, go ahead!
I know that I promised to retire, never ever post again and all that stuff. Don't worry, I won't make a regular habit of popping back in here to too often but I just saw some hilarious news that is too funny to not share with you here on my own little blog!

For those of you with even a passing interest in Japan probably knows of the interesting culture of train molestation that exist here in Japan. Partly fed by the crowded trains and partly fed by by women to timid to make a proper scene when groped upon, those two ingredients has then been put in a pot made to gently stew and creating a pretty unique fetish here in Japan. I do have to admit that my own experience with groping has been very limited as I have never groped anyone, nor, to my infinite sadness, ever been groped upon. 

Apparently this little fetish has created small communities online, far away from timid law abiding citizens like me. In these communities, women who wants to be groped upon give their location (current train etc.) and the guys exchange information and experiences. As long as this is exercised without bothering me and between consenting adults you'll not hear any moral outrage from my corner, good for them. But that's where this funny news story comes in...

A few months ago, on one of these sites for west Japan, a "woman" detailed her request for someone to come and molest her including where she was sitting on the train and what she was wearing. A good community member happened to be in the area and decided to oblige the request (in this story, he's a good guy, he meant well) and merrily started to molest the lady he found with the outfit and place in the train car as described. Apparently she didn't really express her consent, but we all know that a little resistance is all part of the game, right? Too his surprise this poor guy realized that the lady really wasn't interest in being molested when police was called and he was promptly arrested. Poor guy.

The real funny part is that just recently the police located the 49 year old man who apparently had made a hobby out of pretending to want to be a woman requesting a molestation session on these friendly community sites. The guy was actually sitting in the train writing on his smartphone calling out for molesters describing himself as a woman he saw in the car and enjoying the hilarity of the show as it was unfolding in front of him. I find the whole thing pretty funny and I'm sure that he meant no harm, he was just playing a little practical joke that the girl and the groper surely will find funny with time. All in all, I think that he too basically is a good guy in this story as he amused me.

The only bad guys in this story are the people on the online communities who actually trusts that the "women" that requests a good groping really are women. That's beyond sad and pathetic. That's all, this was just too funny to keep to myself, I'll go back to retirement now, stay as long as you like but please turn off the light when you leave.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The end (for now at least)...

This blog was always intended to mainly be about absurdities and funny stories from working as a Salaryman and not a "life in Japan" blog. Unfortunately the new job make it difficult to keep this up, the problem is not a lack of amusing stories from work, the material from that little crack where Japanese business culture meets European business culture is generating as much friction as ever! However, the problem that I am facing now is that I am in a much smaller organization and working with a fixed number of clients in a relatively limited geographical location. This is making it very difficult to keep up the anonymity and to not risk pissing any clients off, or in worst case damage someones business, I cannot really blog about work stuff as I used to and if I can't, it's not particularly fun anymore.

Of course, with two small children I have no gaping hole of free time and energy that needs to be filled either, so I have decided to end my bad consciousness for not posting more often and "officially" put this blog on an indefinite hold. At some point in the future when I have more time and energy and the work situation allows it I might pick it up where I left it, but if and when that would be I have no idea. 

I really do hate when people stop blogging in the middle of something without bringing any closure to how things ended up so let me assure you that things are going well. The new job is great fun so far, Toddler Sunshine and Baby Salaryman are growing up way to fast or way too slow (depending on their attitude), but are healthy and keeping us busy. Mrs. Sunshine is also doing as well as can be expected after managing two small kids, but we are still having fun.

So, thank you all for following me for as long as you have. I am a bit curious on whether I have any followers from the first couple of years, if you have I would appreciate if you could drop a quick comment. 

Thank you goes out to the small informal blogging community that formed around this blog, Chris, Corinne, Kathryn, Kamo, the Octopus (although he has also dropped of the radar now mostly) and everyone else on my blogroll! Also, thank you to everyone who has commented here at one point or another over the years, thank you tons, you are the guys and gals that kept it fun to blog.

I will still monitor my e-mail and this blog so if you want/need to reach me you can still drop a comment or send me a mail. So again, thank you all for reading all these years and see you around!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Cleansing

Burn those books, you'll feel better afterwards!
As I in the quite near future will start working a lot more from home (assuming toddler Sunshine and Baby Salaryman will kindly allow me to do so) I did a purging of my computer/work room to throw out some old stuff. I threw out two large cardboard boxes of books and a large part of my trade paperback collection of comics went deep into the closet.

There was a time when my most valued possessions was my "stuff", things like books, comics, DVD collection, games and CDs, everything else I didn't care too much about, even if the TV was expensive it would be easy to replace while my "stuff" had taken some time and effort to acquire and not as easily replaced. The change to digital media has piece by piece ruined this for me, the first to go was my CD collection as the iPod and iTunes came into play. My 2000+ CD collection now sits in a drawer (all hard plastic cases exchanged for thin plastic sleeves to take up less space) and I have not taken out a CD for over 4 years... Selling it off does not really seem like an option considering that I would in best case only get a pittance for it, particularly here in Japan as the music is obscure, but I can't bring myself to throw it away either as many of the CDs hold a story for me, so I just keep it.

When I got the iPad something similar happened to my comic collection, as I just read comics digitally now and can download all the stuff I have, the comics are just sitting there on the shelf, taking up space. I'm torn between trying to sell them somehow as they probably have a little more value to some than obscure CDs but on the other hand I might want to keep them for a rainy night after the apocalypse has killed the Internet and North Korean EMP bombs have rendered my electronic devices useless.

In one way it feels a bit sad as I often have memories attached to the stuff and can remember when (and what I was thinking) I ordered and got the CD/Comic/Book and a sense of accomplishment as the collection was growing bigger. Nowadays it's way too easy to find most stuff online without any real effort more than google or an iTunes search and it's a process that's basically the same every time. Now my "stuff" is all digital and sitting on a harddrive without anything physical to touch, sort and fondle with. I used to enjoy going through the stuff from time to time and figuring out how to sort it the best way, but moving folders around on a computer is just a hassle that feels like work without any enjoyment.

I don't want to come across as a technology hostile Salaryman, all in all the the joy of physical stuff is outweighed by the convenience of the digital age. But the collector in me was rudely woken up, killed, dragged outside, mutilated and hung in a streetlight as a warning to others... What's the challenge in collecting when everything is readily available and easy to reproduce (control+C...)?

However, just recently I realized that the collector had reawakened in me again, although this time directed towards the exciting world of... ... ... cables! With all the electronical devices in the house, I have accumulated a significant range of cables for all imaginable purposes and recently got these two babies for the house and as I unpacked the stuff and felt satisfaction looking at them I realized that these are the depths that I have sunk to now... Is this what is has come to?



(I actually got the pink one for Mrs. Sunshine and initally felt a bit miffed when she didn't share in my excitement of the convenient and stylish power outlet (with USB ports!))

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hitting The Motherlode

"War Outlawed!" - Why didn't we think of this before?!
Ooops, it looks like it's been over a month since I last posted again... Well, now I can now reveal one of the big reasons why I have been a bit distracted a bit lately (as if two small kids wasn't enough of a reason...). Again I will venture out on new adventures and I am quitting my current job at the big US corporation for something a bit closer to home.

I will be starting to work for a German based healthcare consultant as their man in Japan, assisting their European clients in building relationships in Japan in the field of healthcare (pharma, devices, hospital planning etc.). The firm is so small that we'll only be two people working in Japan so a big change from the large firm I am working for now. The firm is so small that there is no legal entity in Japan and I will be under a contract directly with the German office, this has the main benefit that I will be subject to German working conditions. This means a significantly longer vacation per year while still lifting Japan competitive salary, basically the best of both worlds! Also, frequent business trips back to Europe will make it a lot easier to get back home from time to time and bring the family to use up all that vacation time. No more early morning or late night teleconferences with the US east coast either sounds pretty nice too.

As I no longer will have any Japanese colleagues I am actually starting to get a little bit worried about fitting in in a non-Japanese work environment... A mini-organization in Japan also means that I do not have to put up with all the politics and stuff that comes with it, but also that I will have to do all the stuff myself as no one will be there to help out.

The timing is not perfect though as I actually was enjoying the work at the big US corp and with just a little under two years in I had started to establish my base of power from which to further extend my reign of petty terror, but opportunities like these are very rare so I decided to take the jump again. 

That's the quick update, if not particularly funny, as I will soon have more time to spare in between the jobs you can expect a little more frequent posting from me in the coming weeks!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

It kills everything

Even Superman mixes things up sometimes
I work with health care and have done so basically all of my career. One of the pillars of health care is clinical evidence based on medical science. Basically whenever a new treatment is proposed, it needs to prove itself through scientifically solid evidence that it is better or comparable to the currently available treatment (even if that is doing nothing). I'm inherently skeptical towards any "alternative" treatments like homeopathy, "healing" or prayers as no evidence up to date has shown any favorable outcomes and although the patients health might not negatively be impacted, someone is preying on the gullibility of the sick.

Generally my colleagues agree with me and are sensible in this, but I have often been engaged in discussion on the topic of using face masks to avoid getting a cold. The Japanese often use the masks in the belief that it actually helps in preventing getting a cold although no evidence exist that using the flimsy masks that the Japanese use actually improves the end-point here; getting a cold or not. Until there is any evidence I will continue to refuse to wear a mask.

Around a year ago one of my colleagues, Mr. Short, had purchased some form of "bacteria killer" device, I am unsure on exactly how it was supposed to function, but it was worn around the neck and supposedly would kill off bacteria in the general vicinity and thus protect the wearer from nasty bugs. This initiated some friendly discussion on whether it actually worked or not with me checking up on it on Internet and not finding any evidence apart from the manufacturer's own lab testing (which might or might not be correct, but it's all meaningless anyway unless it actually can prove to reduce the number of times the wearer gets sick). My colleague insisted that he thought it would work, but relented to the fact that he had no evidence to back him up.

The topic was forgotten about until last week, when he was suffering from a particularly nasty cold but still came into the office (wearing a mask, of course). This made me remember the anti-bacteria talisman thing from earlier. The conversation went something like this.
Mr. Salaryman: (genuinely curious) Oh yeah, what happened to that thing you wore around your neck, are you still using that? Wasn't that supposed to stop you from getting sick?
Mr. Short: (silent for a few seconds) ... no, I stopped wearing it...
Mr. Salaryman: (sending amusement) Oh really? How come?
Mr. Short: (embarrassed) Well, apparently it stopped selling it as it proved to be a little too efficient and could pose a danger to small children and you know that I have small kids, so...
Mr. Salaryman: (cannot refrain from rubbing it in) Huh? There you go, so I was right in the end, better to wait for some real evidence, huh?
Mr. Short: Yes, you were right, next time I'll wait for at least some evidence before getting a thing like that...

...I do however overuse nose-spray on occasion despite the overwhelming evidence that it's not good to do so...



Sunday, January 20, 2013

...no baby, but not too far off...

Daddy? Is that you?
The other day, I was sitting in the sofa with the iPad reading the comments on my latest post with 2 1/2 y.o. toddler Sunshine sitting next to me. As I was scrolling down the screen she screamed out with glee andpointed at the "Our Mumbai Escorts" picture I used in my last post, happily exclaiming "Mommy!" (more specifically, the right one "Rina"). As a parent, I felt that I needed to set her straight with a "No baby, that's not Mommy, that's... someone else..." after which she went back to doing whatever she was doing.

Apparently a few days earlier she had been going through one of Mrs. Sunshine's fashion magazine and stopped at a one page advertisement with a sweaty hunk staring horny into the camera, happily exclaiming "Daddy!".

I guess I can say that I probably am closer to a sweaty hunk than Mrs. Sunshine is to an Indian prostitute at least, but that might be stretching it... 

Monday, January 14, 2013

The year of the snake 2013!

That's not a normal snake? Is it a cobra?
Considerably later than other years so far on this blog, but I thought I should give it a shot to try and summarize 2012. As the remaining readers of this blog obviously have figured out, other prioritizes made my blogging schedule irregular to say the least. The start of the year I was kept busy by Toddler Sunshine, Mrs. Sunshine's late stage pregnancy and trying to get into the job I started in the summer the previous year, after the birth of Baby Salaryman things just passed by in a bit of a blur. 

Biggest Event of 2012 was of course the birth of Baby Salaryman, born to restore balance to the battle of the genders in the Salaryman household and ensure that my name lives on for eternity in the island of Japan. May his seed burn strong and brightly.

Biggest Revelation of 2012 is much harder to pinpoint... Looking back, it feels like most of the year was spent looking after kids or working with not much in between. Of course, seeing the Avengers movie in the movie theater was great, there came out some good new music as well, thinking especially of Agent Side Grinder with the song Wolf Hour and old school EBM band Orange Sector with the hit Der Maschinist, the comeback of Daybehavior, but nothing that really changed how I view the world.

Biggest Staying Power in 2012 was the iPad, the little tablet has not gotten me bored with it yet. In fact, I like it so much that I upgraded to the newer iPad during last year (the one with the faster processor) after some negotiating with Mrs. Sunshine ("Do you really really need it?" "Well..." "If you really really need it and you absolutely must have it you can buy it, but there are other stuff we need..." "Ok, thanks, I'll buy it then!"). To toddler Sunshine's delight, this means that we now ended up with three iPads in the household and one that she has claimed her own. I have even seriously considered getting one of those water proof iPad bags so I can bring it in the bath with me as well. I'm still waiting for the toilet model of the iPad as well.

Best Blog of 2012 is also really hard as I have not found any new particularly interesting ones and for my favorite ones both Corinne and Chris have run into a bit of a blogging fatigue similar to mine it looks like. Former "Green Eyed Geisha" started a new blog that I was looking forward to, but the posts there also stopped coming. Kamo with the blog This is how she fight starts is the most interesting thing to pop up in 2012 (but not sure if I actually started reading it in 2011?). Even if I am embarrassed to say that my commenting manners is lacking, I still check out Project Me and was happy to see Ninja Without a Clue make a comeback in posting.

Keep at it, it'll get better with time!
Favorite Comment Dropper of 2012 is the people behind Mumbai/Dehli Escorts who ferociously started leaving comments on my posts advertising their exclusive services. In the beginning I deleted them as soon as they came up, but their eagerness to drop comments won me over and I decided to let them be (at least on older posts). As an interesting tidbit it can be mentioned that I have very few visitors from India, I have myself never been there with no plans to go and I doubt that many of my readers visit India often and even if they did they would not trust those guys with their physical needs. Good work Mumbai escorts and happy 2013!

Other Stuff that kept me Entertained in 2012 was (to my surprise) the King of Thrones TV-series, it's rare to see fantasy done well but this show has pulled it off. The Walking Dead TV-series and comic has kept its staying power, but ultimately they all still lose out to a classic like The Wire (which I started re-watching during autumn and still working my way through). Some good games came out as well in 2012, thinking particularly of Mass Effect 3 (I was ok with the ending), Dishonored and the remake of X-Com. But still, nothing like Skyrim from 2011...

To all my readers, a belated Happy New Year and wish you all a fantastic 2013! This year happens to be the Year of the Snake, something that is supposed to be good, contrary to what the Western image of snakes would make you think...      
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