Gangbusters to trickles

Ugh...I was about to write a long boring whiny post...then I realized, who f'n cares? Yeah, I'm not feeling it lately. Getting nothing done at work then coming home and being a lazy bitch or bastard (depends your POV). *sigh* So, here you are. A shorten down whiny post. Enjoy.


Paprika - Not your everyday spice

So, being more penniless since getting my car fixed, I had to resort to finding cool and interesting things to do on the Internet. One place that I had been to a while ago is a place for Japanese media, like anime! Check it here at Crunchy Roll. It has a bunch of "unlicensed" tv shows from Japan. Typically, once it becomes licensed (I'm not sure exactly to what that means) they will remove whatever media from the site. It's a good rule I guess. Anyway...

I was cruising the anime section trying to find something I haven't seen before and is still on the site. 86 pages...wasn't looking good till I hit the P section. What did my wander eye see but Paprika, a recently released movie in the States (been out since 2006 in Japan). It was just there...aching for me to watch it. I have seen trailers for it on our copy of Dragonball Z Season 1 (and Season 2 is out if anybody wants to get it for us :P) and thought it looked really cool. So my Saturday night was sealed, with Paprika and a little something-something from the liquor cabinet (the counter next to the freezer).

I hit play and watched. It was amazing! A certain must buy once it comes out DVD here in the States. I haven't seen a realistic anime for such a long time. It was certainly a breath of fresh air. The anime is by Satoshi Kon who also did "Millennium Actress" and "Tokyo Godfathers." I wanted to see "Actress" for a while now. I will certainly be more active in trying to find it.

One of the things I really liked about the movie was the movie score. It was created by Susumu Hirasawa. The theme really stuck with me and not like a horrible jingle you can't get out of your head (you feel like chicken tonight, chicken tonight, chicken tonight!). It was electronica with just the right amount of awesome. The composer wanted to give away his music for free and here's the link to download two songs from the movie. I don't know enough Japaneses to understand but you really don't need to. Download it and find out for yourself.

I really haven't been keeping up with the latest and greatest and clearly it shows. Paprika is actually playing in a theater in Seattle which I really want to go see and you all know me as wanting to go to Seattle all the time. Tis a good movie and you all should watch it. Then buy the DVD.


Timing Issue Resolved

I picked my car up from the shop yesterday. I had the borken timing belt, water pump replaced and a new seal which is in the same area of the engine. I also got a new belt for the accessories...very chic. All in all, I departed with about $800. I also got estimates on what else needs to be done. I'll be departing with more of my monies in the future if I want to keep the car. Anyway, the car came back feeling a little better and it looks a little better. They gave it a bath which it needed badly. Hopefully it will run for a little bit longer till I can gather up more funds to get the other recommended things done up.


Comedy - It's all about timing

So today was the first time I had to kick start the ol air conditioner in the car. I turned it on, hoping it still worked. I tried it our for a few minutes when I got home from work as I would be taking Dawn to the kidney center shortly thereafter. I thought it would be good to test it out somewhere safe and sound. I pushed the button, the green light came on, and after a minute or two cold air began to circulate. Awesome! I'll be chilled like a frappuccino at Starbucks.

Anyway, lets go back a little further back in time to a place where they change oil and do other service related jobs. The local Jiffy Lube down the street. Upon finishing up, one of the techs asked me if knew about the knocking noise coming from the right side of the engine. I said I was aware of it but didn't know what it was. Since then, I let it make the noise as I did not see any thing obvious that would fly off the engine.

Now, zip on up back to today. I have picked up Dawn from the kidney center and we're on our way to Rite Aid to pick up a few things. I'm cruising along and all of the sudden, the car dies. That's right...my Toyota Camry lost power and all the good stuff that comes from it. No big explosion, no knocking noise, no nothing. The steering become real tough and various idiot lights began to pop up. It was nice enough to do this a mere block from our apartment. Also the city of Bothell was also kind enough to have the foresight to build extra space along the road where it died. Kudos to city engineers!

I whip out my cell phone and start calling friends. I get a hold of a set and thank them from the bottom of my robot heart. They roll out. They don't transform though, but anyway. Ten minutes later, assistance arrives. Dawn is whisked away to finish her trip to Rite Aid. More assistance is called for. Over the course of a few hours, we...err...they narrowed possible suspect issues. Fuses and more fuses were ruled out. Fuel pump was running. Alternator was alternating. Starter was starting. Spark plugs a sparking.

Things began to look like a worse case scenario: an issue with the computer running the joint. I have been experiencing minor electrical issues over the years so it was in the realm of possibility. Just to be sure there were fuel (I had felt 100% confident that lack of fuel was not the issue) we went and got a gallon or so of gas. On our return, the additional assistance has another idea to try out. As it turns out, not all the spark plugs were a sparking.

Now, we can come back to the knocking noise that the guy at Jiffy Lube so kindly pointed out. It was deduced that the ... wait for it ... timing belt probably broke. We're also guessing it broke due to the new load of the AC running, as it was indeed running at the time the car died. We also surmised the knocking noise was the timing belt on it's last legs. After a lot of testing and some car know-how, the problem was diagnosed probably correctly.

So you see, it was all about the timing...belt. And now it will be all about the $$$ as the timing belt in my car is not so easily accessible. So tis it was a comedy of my errors. Remember, if you hear a knocking, don't wait till your car dies. You may not be so lucky to be a mere block away from your home and having knowledgeable friends.