Monday, November 24, 2008

You know, driving slower IS an option

Well, we had some snow. And since Japan refuses to use either road salt or sand, the few inches of snow has been driven and re frozen into a solid sheet of black ice. If you`re lucky, some of the ice is still white and you can see it, but I walked about 100 feet to the post office and the entire stretch of road was solid black ice. Within 2 minutes, I saw 3 different cars completely lock up their tires as they approached the corner they wanted. You see, here in Japan defensive driving is a thing of the past. Yes folks, that`s right. Japan has long been using a far more sophisticated form of driving. Robots? Nano-technology? Both are good guesses but you are WAY off. No. Japan uses the far more advanced technique of driving on a wish and a prayer. Its WAY better. You can drive like you would under the best of road conditions but in far worse and dangerous ones and your wishes and prayers will keep you safe.
This may seem like a story but all my observations have led me to believe that Japanese people drive as though they think they won`t lose control. Everyone just zips around like normal and then slides out of control when they need to stop. Does this affect them? Nope. They just spin the tires away from their stop and speed away.
I wasn`t worried about my driving, since I understand the concept of slowing down and being careful when conditions are like this, but now I suddenly have to deal with a city of 25,000 who have no single driving care in the world. Pray for me Canada.... pray

Sunday, November 23, 2008

He`s a phoney

So I had an interesting time trying to get a new phone the other day. Before we get to that tale, allow me to fill in some back-story.

I came to Japan carrying an old Softbank model which I had bought when I did my exchange program. It wasn`t the coolest phone out there, but it worked and it was cheap to reactivate. Sadly, after about a month the screen started to die. It wouldnt turn on all the way and there were black and grey lines of dead pixels all the was across the face. Shortly following this, the camera and other such functions stopped working. More recently, the screen took to completely dying after about 10 seconds of use and when it would come back on the contents of the screen would be completely mirrored and unreadable. I don`t actually know how such changes occured, but I assumed the worst and called an exorcist. Even that guy said there was nothing I could do. I made the choice to just suck it up and get a new phone. I am making a lot of extra cash on the exchange rates when I transfer money home so I figured no biggie......

I went to the phone company softbank and explained my situation and they showed me a price list. Bottom line was $600 with the nicer models topping out just around $1200. After I collected my jaw from the floor I went next door to the AU shoppe. Different company and a COMPLETLY different price list. Now, don`t get me wrong. I knew a new phone was going to cost me and also knew that it would be a few hundred dollars. I had no idea that Softbank had the ability to bring back technology from the 29th century and create cellphones with it. So unless their cellphones allowed me to leave the confines of my medical bay while maintaining myability to interact with non-holographic objects there was no way I was going down that road.

AU was full of wonderful phones though. I ended up paying about $100 for a new phone and the monthly fee is less than it was with the last company. Long story short. Don`t trust a company who puts Hillary Duff on their posters. I should have known from the start.
My new phone. The white one BTW

Thursday, November 06, 2008

LLOLS Wintorz

We got our first snow on Tuesday! It wasn`t staying on the ground because it was a bit above freezing. It was covering the ski hill outside my window pretty well though. I walked to the dollar store and it was really nice. It was really puffy and wasn`t very heavy. Then it was 15C for the next two days. I did notice that snow brooms are out on display now. I am looking forward to a winter of dry snow as opposed to the wet slop we get in Hamilton. My vacation was nice, and there is a nice DVD of the whole trip available now to those who want one. Just let me know. I will also put together a small clip video for my here I think. Nothin fancy, just highlights. I figured out how to use Nero movie maker a little better so its no longer a chore just getting a video produced.
I`m off to the hospital tomorrow morning since my body is rejecting Japanese air and turning against me again. It is getting worse everytime, so I hope they can cure me this time! Oh, I actually have a clip from the DVD from one of my first failed movie creation attempts. Enjoy.

On a nice positive note. I used to hate uploading video to blogger because it would take ages. With my new internets, its super fast. I just did a 100mb upload in 1 minute. It used to take me over an hour!