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Evil Jim

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11:50 pm: Happy Halloween, I'm Evil Jim
If I can pry myself away from the large archive of Love Hina manga I can finally make another update. Hopefully things should slow down a bit around here so I can have a few more entries this week.

Tho' today was Halloween, most of the fun to be had was yesterday at Anime Club. I took care of most of the most important stuff that needed to be done in town first and made it back in time to be leisurely in my preparations for the evening to come. When I called Tick to tell him to get ready he canceled last minute without explanation making me wonder if he would have bothered to tell me at all before I left. Matt had to attend his sister's confirmation (on Halloween??) and was down for the day. Tom would have called if he were free (weekend jobs suck) so the only other regular that could join me was Sarah and even that was at last minute.

Sarah was the first to see me and I wasn't sure how she would react since she's often pretty quiet. As I went to knock on the front door she came around from the back and when she saw me halted in her tracks to stare and say "What... did... you... do,... Jim?" All I could say was "Happy Halloween" as I let her get a good look and opened the car door for her. She was shocked; the fun had begun.

I went to the folks' house to pick up my dad and when I entered, Mom's jaw dropped. "Oh my god... what did you do??" It took Dad a moment because of his vision but he just laughed. He had a hint beforehand because I had to practice during our trip to D.C. but I had sworn him to secrecy. Once they regained their composure I reminded them that the car was still running with someone waiting outside and Dad hurried into his cowboy outfit.

I should point out that it wasn't merely a costume that he wore. He grew up in South Dakota on a ranch and pretty much is a cowboy at heart so all the parts of his outfit were already in his wardrobe. I advised against the gun and holster but as it was only a pellet gun and broken 35 years ago at that I deemed it harmless enough to not worry about.

On the way there I spent $52.57 on manga at 20th Century Books which I really shouldn't have but a couple of my updates were in and FLCL was still there. *sighs* And here I was so proud of myself a couple years ago for dropping a number of my monthly American publications to save money. I think my budget has tripled now but it's hard to tell since some books publish bi-monthly or bi-annually and I never bother to keep track, I just buy when I see a new one. I blame Jon for my manga addiction.

Anyway, the Russian dumpling place was closed (damn, damn, damn) but only for the day (whew!) so we just went to Charley's for grilled subs and "gourmet" french fries that are so unhealthy my heart faltered just ordering them. It was already crowded (had to park under Granger hall instead of the usual lot because it was full) and people were out in costume. I wondered what the place would be a like a few hours from then and if I would be able to read about dumb drunks in the news over the next few days. Outside the humanities building I stopped at I'm Here and bought us each a sweet rice ball to which I have become quite fond of since their initial discovery this semester.

We were two hours early but there but Bob and Brian were inside already watching AMVs on Mihoshi. I set my stuff down and went down front to introduce myself. Neither of them seemed too impressed so I introduced my father who had never been to Anime Club before and had long been wondering what went on there.

People slowly filed in and I just wandered around. I'd sortof loom into a conversation and casually introduce myself, "Hi... I'm Evil Jim." Jaws dropped. Eyes bugged. People stuttered in disbelief. I've known Jon for over ten years and even he didn't recognize me at first. Some had to find a familiar feature about me first like my eyes, others had to hear my voice a couple times before they knew who it was. Even after I introduced myself it still took Sebastian a couple minutes to catch on. I caught Heather off-guard as well and they both liked the look.

Shortly before the show began I slipped into my seat to find Captian Tylor (tcdohl) and Lust (miang) next to me for the first time since the beginning of the semester. Their costumes were excellent and I couldn't help staring, especially at Tylor since the character is one of my favourites. Sheree was damn hot and presented another reason for me to cease duff-sitting and get into Full Metal Alchemist already. They didn't make much of a production about my appearance but shock and awe comes in many forms. I was just happy to see them again and we chatted a bit about our busy lives before "The AMV Before Christmas" started the show.

The opening titles to Full Metal Panic went by and we were a minute or two into the show when Randy stopped it because that episode had already been shown. He has been responsible for that series for the past month because I had to miss three showings for D.C. and the pirate party. Once things were sorted out he had the volumes already shown and was looking in the part of the theater where I usually sit in order to return them to me. "Is Evil Jim even here tonite?" he asked and a few people said yes and I waved at him. He looked at me and stood there for a moment. His jaw dropped and he stood there for another moment. I kept waiting until he said "Oh my god the hamster just died." Later on he said it took ten minutes for a new one to get running on the wheel again and wanted it firmly known by everyone that he was officially flabbergasted.

I was thoroughly surprised myself at how many people actually noticed. I don't talk to everyone at club often enough to remember names and sometimes fail completely when I try to contribute to conversations. I didn't know so many people knew who I was. After Twelve Kingdoms when everyone in costume was lined up at the front of the room before the judging Sarah encouraged me to go down to join them. When my turn came up to talk about my "costume" I just said "I didn't plan on entering the contest but I was coerced into coming down. For those of you who remember what I used to look like, I am Evil Jim." This was when I realized how many people actually knew me because it prompted laughter and actually applause. I was too surprised to be embarrassed then but I am now, a little.

I sat in on the judging to get photos of and give candy to everyone who dressed up. More than thirty in all but I still had plenty of chocolate left over to make myself sick. I also donated several prizes being six volumes of manga (that I didn't like enough to keep,) three paper fans and the t-shirt from my FMP box that is too big for me to wear comfortably. People were very generous this year and I think that nearly everyone who came in costume got something, the best ones two or three. I really hoped someone would cosplay as Chidori who would definitely get one of the fans but, alas, no FMP costumes at all. This surprised me really since it's the most popular series this time around.

Unfortunately, Chrno Crusade was reported to be very good that night which I missed due to the judging. I enjoy the series and would like to see it all but unfortunately haven't found more than the first four episodes online. I should check to see if it's licensed.

After the first episode of Boogiepop Phantom *shudder*, Megan and Margret stopped the show to present prizes. The judging was late this year so by the time they finished it was well into OAV time and many people had already left. The best prizes were awarded to the best costumes but people even got things for answering the judges' random questions during the interview part. Dad received a pin just for being "Evil Jim's Dad." I think they had more prizes than they knew what to do with.

Not being interested in the series we then left and I took Dad and Sarah home. My night didn't end there however as this was October 30th and the 66th anniversary of the War of the Worlds radio broadcast that caused so much trouble for our grandparents that one fateful night. I headed out of town and kept making turns out into the countryside to get as far away from city lights and traffic as possible. It was already eleven before I left town so I didn't have much time to begin before the 30th was officially over. I finally found a quiet stretch of road far from any farm yard lights and near some gnarled and bare trees undulating in the high winds. I pulled onto an embankment intended for farmers to get their equipment into the neighboring field and searched for the disk with the broadcast.... And searched... And to my utter horror and disbelief found that I did not have it with me!! Of all the things to forget of all the nights of the year it had to be The War of the Worlds broadcast on my annual celebration of the event!!!

I weighed my options. I didn't have time to return home to retrieve the recording and then find another place to listen (for I always drive until I'm lost with few signs of civilization around as possible to eliminate distractions so I can focus entirely on the story,) and it was doubtful to find a radio station playing it at that time. The closest I had was Jeff Wayne's techno remix from the PC game and my own mix of the broadcast and appropriate music edited in. I went with the latter since the project is still in progress and I knew there was at least half of the program untouched and in tact.

I played only the story tracks and found the pacing to be all off throughout the first half without the music I edited in. It progresses so fast it's distracting and lacks the buildup which worked so well 66 years ago. The second half, being merely Professor Pierson's narration of his journey across a crushed and defeated land held together without fault and I was able to get into it with no trouble at all. Overall I think I only missed about 20 minutes and still enjoyed it as the grand finale of a great day. But, as I did miss quite a few chunks from the first half I still want to do it right and listen to the whole thing. Since Thea was unable to join me last night due to a recovering illness she agreed to come for the followup next Friday night. It's always more fun with company and so far I haven't had any complaints or comments on the strangeness of it all. I have such cool friends.

Halloween itself was actually pretty quiet this year as it has been for a while. I could have spent the entire day doing nothing but reading manga but I knew I really should get out of the house for a little while before the kids came, if only to get pumpkins. I met Thea online and since she was feeling better we agreed to make a quick trip up to the city to get some things for her aquariums. We both agreed that on days like this it's easier to leave the house when one has company so it worked out well. When she came over she was struck by my appearance (as I had kept the look from last nite) and seemed to imply that she liked it better than how I used to be. (Girls tend to point this out the most and a few at A-Club even said I should do it more often to which I replied, "If I did it wouldn't be very Evil, would it?")

I picked out three pumpkins and we went to a large pet store for her supplies. We spoke much of pets and when we arrived she tried to sell me on some of the fish there, but finally settled on a king snake that one of the employees was carrying as part of her costume. It was quite docile and lazy, an uncommon temperament for a king snake but it had come from a very good home where it was well taken care of. We talked about it for a while and I can actually see myself with a snake but I made no decisions to adopt any animals today, despite Thea's recurring *coughgetasnake!*

At home again I vegged out for a while with more of my Love Hina manga and finally dragged myself away to cook an elaborate breakfast before carving the first pumpkin. I didn't get past scraping the innards clean (leave it to me to choose the heaviest pumpkin with the thickest skin to attempt first) when the first group of little brats arrived. The treating had begun an hour before I expected so after taking care of them I merely set a candle into the gourd and set it outside with the top off to accent the corner of my deck along with the other candles.

I believe I got 31 customers in all but for a while they were arriving in large groups and I briefly worried that I might run out of sewing needles candy. They tapered off after eight or so and I still have enough left to make myself quite sick, even after giving so much away at the costume contest. Looks like I won't have to buy candy from the machine at work for a while.

That pretty much gets me up-to-date. I might look forward to more manga but I still have to edit and spell check all this which isn't fun using Live Journal's "update journal" page. But I've done it enough that I can go through it quickly if I don't have many embarrassing grammatical errors to rewrite. Anyway...

- E V I L O U T -

Current Mood: fly on a windshield

Current Music: The Eve of the War techno remix ~ Jeff Wayne
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