That Genuine Rebel Flavour

Tuesday, August 23. 2005
Powder blue,
Over you,
Rebel true,
Want to spew.

Brad and Jen are officially over. The official line here is that we all see ourselves with a chance. Which one, goes the eternal enquiry. Still the same answer. I really wouldnt mind either.

I have been getting stuck into the local weeklies. The tabloids! And such slop, it really offends me that I learned to read Japanese so that I might waste my ability (not to mention my time) comprehending it. But yet it continue, compelled, drawn. Sometimes they enlighten, or I should say, enlighten on subjects other than Naoko Ijimas cleavage. Theres a town in outback Australia called Eromanga. I thank the staff writer at Flash! for that pearl, but the two page spread dedicated to the theme of dirty Japanese inadvertently hiding in other places wow. I almost admire that.

If you followed that, you may stay. The rest, e-mail the J to get instructions as to where to find the door, then ring Bancho to hear about it not letting it hit your ARSE on the WAY OUT.

I swear, Ill get Bloc Party to play at me wedding. My wedding. I know theyll be there, because theyll be wearing the dresses and walking down the aisle.

Some days, life is just too short to read Something Awful. Today is one of those days.

Wild notions

Monday, August 22. 2005
Yeah, savage
Ripping off someone elses words because they
They make it sound so much better, like when
I was walking along the canal and it all sounded
So good, do good there in my head
So savage
That I rip on these guys just because
This urge to get it out and tell you,
Tell you all

Sixty years that is a lifetime, almost, some ten years off the average. Give or take and it has proved that little has changed in the attitudes. Give or take, where it matters. From a somewhat social Darwinian point of view, a nation that fails to keep up industrially or technologically is at fault and can be held to blame for being invaded. Does prey call a predator by virtue of not being able to fight it off? I wont make these claims. Its just an idea.

The travel diary will be along soon, after the re-runs have gone away. Couldnt be running travel stories side by side, could we now. I must touch on part of it here, because I went to Hiroshima. Since I was I high school student I have always wanted to visit this city, an urge that began when I first read of the a-bomb attack as an eight year old. The story of Sadako and the thousand paper cranes was something I only came upon as a teenager and almost more than the other monuments in Hiroshima, the childrens memorial always held a fascination for me. This story is for later; I need to tell you that I went to Hiroshima.

It was sixty years and a week after the bomb fell. The weekend before I was there was something else, six hour waits to give your respects at the monument, right wing scum and bomb survivors mixed with politicians and visitors not only from all over the country but the world. The heat must have been brutal. Who would complain, on such an occasion, when paying respects is the only agenda? The world knows the name of this city for all the wrong reasons.

A succession of mayors have used this fame to plead, beg almost. I have since spoken to many different people about what they thought of the place and the responses I find mostly hard to take. I almost wonder if they realise what happened there, I almost wonder if they managed to remove themselves from the issue for even a second. Yes, it is famous and the idea that it needed not happen, or that it somehow saved lives and provided research data (concepts all addressed at the museum, it must be noted) but we cannot hide from the fact that it happened and 200,000 souls left this world that morning and if their voices could be heard, they would agree. Let it happen to no-one else. The monument describes a mistake without even trying to clarify. The English translation provided on the spot is not perfect (it translates into the passive voice, thus negating the requirement for a subject for the verb mistake) but works to the same effect as the Japanese. What was the mistake and who made it I feel that too many people dont see all sides.

A mistake; I only know because of truths I half stumbled upon. Education is not adequate in this country and empathy lacking in others. Listen to that! We could go on for days, weeks even, on that one line. Should you disagree or with to dig further, by all means. You know the address.

Where is this going? Mistakes are still being made. The mayor of Hiroshima will tell you of all the times he has sent telegrams to governments who conduct nuclear tests. The families of soldiers exposed to radiation the world over, not only in weapons tests but in power plant mishaps will testify to the results. Governments who push to develop these weapons and those who support them; governments who refuse to step away.

Man, where is this going? All is fair in war, especially if you started it and even more so if you are in no position to dictate terms. This is the way it goes. Its not right; beyond the boundaries of right and wrong. It got out of control and the pride on both sides; pride causes mistakes. I know I dont like saying Im wrong.

I dont have a snappy closing here. Ill leave these thoughts here and get on with it.

Ill take back the comment about Steve Jobs and his shitty headphones if someone gives me one of those new Apple mouses for review purposes. Yeah. Review purposes. I promise I wont cover it in oil and see if it can be controlled with my asscheeks. Really.

If Gregs wife thinks she is as important as Boyd is to Mac Hall and Tycho is to Penny Arcade, tell me this: how come Boyd and Tycho have their names at the bottom of each strip? I think you need to have a little chat with your man, woman. And maybe take a lesson in subtle from Kurtz, because even he is better than you. But take heart, its never too late to grow.

I think that makes me the biggest dork on here.



And listen.

Notice the time drive by

Sunday, August 21. 2005
Couldnt believe your words until
I saw your tears
Didnt want to see them, you know
Wanted to trust your words and reason
But I havent grown that much
And the last was never, ever going to be enough.

Whats been happening? The summer is winding up and its been sixty years since the war came to endgame. The stark contrast in how the occasion is marked across Asia tells us how much denial has happened. I will not hold back from saying that it was mostly on this side of the fence.

Mr. Koizumi will pull another magic turn and get out of it, you all just watch. His days these arent, but he still has reserve to ward off these leeches. Postal reform wont bring this lion down.

Steve Jobs owes me a blow job because he makes such shitty earphones. Quote me on that, please.

I saw a field that grew perfection,
Full of things you do.

Its funny, how here in the end, I can find the will to put into words the cold hard truth of what Ive been doing. During it all I dont know if I even tell myself whats really happening, so I have to simultaneously apologise to a few people. Because otherwise I look a lot crazier than I really am, so sorry to the J all the support for your mental friend, he gets better for it.

I dont know if I was ready for it, maybe I wasnt, but I put in everything I needed to and there was nothing I could have done to make it better. I did it all right and it still didnt make it. I did it all right by her but these things do end. The start was one of those things, its quite possible that I never picked up how much into it I was. I certainly didnt go telling the neighbourhood or shouting from rooftops. I even gave off signals that I wasnt going to take it so seriously, but I now know that I am not capable of anything less than third gear. Even then, I rarely drop past fourth.

We had such fun, I never wanted to leave her. When we talked I could have gone on all day, it was never time to go home for me. But I had to, because reality is an unfortunate base for these activities. There was no holding back, I was myself and she was herself. Nothing to hide, nothing to hide from.

I saw this box, get rid of heartache
And cure cancer too.

I did get swept up, in my head, by another girl. It was a curious thing, I tell you. Me, I like this fantasy thing. Fantasy it was, all played in my head. She went off for a holiday and so did I, in the meantime I realised that I didnt, wouldnt, couldnt. My commitment had been made and tested and survived. I would get out if this web by letting go. I made it out alive and as I raced back to the city, it was good to be alive.

Things got shot up so quickly. I hadnt even arrived back in Tokyo, hadnt even gotten home. She left me, my girl, left me. Needed to commit to other things Her goals, she couldnt concentrate with me in the picture. She decided to cut me out and once she makes her mind up, theres no force that will bend that will back. No words of mine could make up for her choice. I tried them all and in the end all I made her do was cry. She left and the hole is so much bigger than I ever thought.

It was just so sudden. I dont have a gift for seeing these things coming, but this time I really couldnt see it. A bolt out of the blue and she wanted to go. The time I had been away gave her time to think about it and she reached her decision without me around, a full week before I came home. She didnt want to drop the bomb while I was away, I appreciate not having my holiday wrecked. Still, the final hours are not much better and I get depressed after a journey ends. No matter how short it may have been. It was still a journey.

Well regret all those things we thought of
But didnt ever do.

That was that. She had time to think and deliver, I had to take it. I didnt take it well. Theres this big hole that I still dont see and I hate having there. There must be a million girls to choose from in this city but right now, I only want one. I dont want her gone, I want her here. I want to see her name come up on my phone, I want to know shes going to be waiting somewhere for me on Tuesday night. And then Friday, maybe, Saturday, I hope But never again. I told her I didnt want to hear from her. She knew I hurt easy and couldnt think of a way to get around that. I couldnt deal with hearing from her and remembering This time now is what three months from now will feel like. Will her plans all come off, with her sacrifice made? Do I want to know the answer to that, knowing it was me?

Just go, go now. Theres nothing more to say.

Tokyo Tales [crowded streets crowded prose]

Saturday, August 20. 2005
Never Alone

You can never be alone in this city. Everywhere you go therell be eyes from a window, feet next to you on the street. You cant get away in this city and all our relationships are shared, every moment you share with your lover you share with someone else and you cant escape this. No respite can be found from the crowds, they push on around you all hours of the day, shuffle past even on the smallest of streets.

Small handfuls of hours can be purchased to share your lust, but even then someone can hear, someone will be walking past and you, in a quiet moment as you stop to catch yourself, will hear the passions from the next room, the next door, the next floor

Your beginnings are caught amongst the conversations and flights of others, your moments of truth witnessed by strangers. The tears at the end cannot be hidden from the people nearby, so we hold them back until we cant be together anymore. The city bears witness to our love, so lovers get about with constant eyes on them. Sometimes they watch and encourage, sometimes glow purple with jealousy for they see a spark they lost long ago. Maybe they streak red across their vision of you for reasons their despair has driven them to, maybe they black you out but keep the sensation somewhere deep inside.

Each moment is not our own, we need this sometimes, but we live with the city, not merely in it, and she shares our love, but not shares in it.

Aaarg fuck

Friday, August 19. 2005
Captain Useless here. Been a while since Ive seen you. Kerouac Cat is currently locked in the cupboard and refuses to come out, even for Jenga. That thing that showed up last night we found scrawled in blood on a pair of sheets, one was really old and written neatly, even lovingly. The other was on a brand new fucking sheet and we could barely read it. I tell you, the things Sir Forthright and I have to deal with. All we could fit under the door was sticks of chewing gum, so thats all the sustenance hes getting at the moment.

Maybe hell lose weight.

Since Sir Forthright went ahead and posted the blood stains last night after I explicitly told him not to, I guess Im responsible for giving you ungrateful bastards something tonight.

Heres some of the abuse Ive been hurling at Kerouac Cat through the cupboard door. I hope you find it as amusing as Sir Forthright and I do.

Get the fuck out of this room, out of this fucking house and find a real apartment! Im goddamn sick of getting rid of all the cockroaches because youre off whimpering in the corner. You heard me! Do it now!

Fix that blasted computer and then you might stop pissing and moaning about it not working! Jesus Christ, you can only use it as an excuse for so long. What if it breaks totally and no-one can do anything? How will Sir Forthright find his porn then? Huh? Huh? How? You know what will happen then Fix it!

Stop all that whining, it wont bring anyone or anything back. I dont care that they all e-mailed you in the same day, its a fucking coincidence. You pussy, they all got over it and moved on, listen to me! Listen to the Bancho! Theres a cat who knows his shit. They wont come back and you know it, you miserable bastard. Then those e-mails, you were the one who answered them. Blame yourself. At least it was a step closer to being social. You arse.

Why did you give up on the bosss kid? Man, what an exploit I cant believe you. Did your balls fall off already? Maybe the computer fucking up emasculated you. Finally. Come on Sir Forthright, lets get a beer. Or ten. I stole Kerouac Cats wallet while he was whimpering.

Oh, and you should be studying. Study! Fuck, you are lazy. Lazy bastard. Lets go before I get offensive and say something I mean.

See you all later.

Captain Useless

Dead Trees and Traffic Islands

Thursday, August 18. 2005
Im wired in this evening and its been a 24 hours I would rather forget about. Coming back from the road is always a depressing time for me, the twelve hours after walking through the door again are the worst. I dont care that my own bed is here, or that I can have a clean shower whenever I want, all I want is a train heading somewhere and a destination. The bag on my back just feels useless after being both my anchor and my leash, pulling me to adventure. Now I just have to unpack it and throw all my gear in the washing machine.

What was the last week? Did it really happen? Twelve hours of soul decompression, but there was so much else to deal with this time around.

I wrote this about someone, but not about anyone. I wrote it for someone, with that someone in mind, but I really wrote it all for you.

The last part? I dont care right now. I just want to forget.

A love letter to you

You, who stunned me from the start,
You, who still takes the words from my mouth
When you appear, when you walk
When youre in front of me


Thats when time stops,
Nothing else is there but you
Thats when I feel strong and weak and perfect and useless,
All at once, thats when you make me feel


Let me take you, let me hold you and tell you
These little truths and little sweet nothings
Let me make you feel like you are the only one in this world
The way you do to me
Let me hold you in my arms and whisper in your ear
All the ways you make the world a better place and
Let me feel the beat of your heart ,
The softness of your breath

Hear my voice and feel safe,
Hear my voice and feel happy
Look into my eyes and know I tell the truth
Look into my heart and find that I am true;
Would it be that we could be the most
Perfect and could it be that I could make you
The happiest in this world.

Be mine and mine alone, smile when I try to make you laugh
Smile when I try and stop you crying,
Laugh when I cant stop myself and go too far
Take a chance on me, Ill make you so happy.

Let me love you.

Please dont leave


just stay a little longer, just talk a little more
Dont leave, please dont leave
Well make it, Ill be here when you want and

somewhere else when you dont


please dont leave
I dont want to dig the little pieces of you out of my life
I dont want to have to find some little box to put them all in and then hide it away
cant we hang onto this, we only just began

I don't want to live in this world where I'll never get to wait for you somewhere
never see your name on my phone
never see you walk away again.

I never thought I'd see you go, I never imagined
shock, I'm still in shock, still can't believe it all

just come back... don't leave me now


i want you, i need you, don't you need me? You don't say you do, but I know
I know you want me still

so don't leave, don't go



Wednesday, August 17. 2005
Editor's note: While KC is away he has asked me to do a repost of entries he wrote about visiting me in Taiwan, August 2004. He's sentimental like that. This first post was originally appeared 14 November, 3 months after he visited me. So for your reading pleasure, the House of the Dragon presents:

Travels in Taiwan, Part 1
Day 1: Taipei

I arrived at Chiang Kai Shek International Airport slightly later than scheduled. The flight was uneventful. The sight of Japan from a clear sky at night was awe-inspiring; circling up and out of Narita you could see all the way across the Boso Peninsula to the city with the full moon looking right back at you, explosions from three different fireworks festivals blossoming across the land.

The J was there when I got off the bus from the airport at Taipei main station. With his scooter. Diving headfirst into Taipei traffic was many things. Scary, thrilling, exhilarating but mostly scary. Landing at his place near Wolong Road, this part of Taipei looks almost like imagination would have it. Wall to wall housing, four to five storeys up, looking dirty. But with that dirt comes its characterI would say that looking out at it just as easily depresses as it does excites. These streets have character that I could try long and hard to describe. The hustle, the crazy traffic, the food stands, the fleets of scooters. It is warm; no, hot and sweaty, close and cramped. But not objectionable. Human.

We went to Cathys bar. It looked mostly foreign in there and has a nice atmosphere. Cathy is very friendly. I can see how things can go pear shaped in a place like this.
Day 2: Taipei

Off to see the sights. Better start with the big, well know stuff. The political stuff. So Chiang Kai Shek Temple was first on the agenda. I am told it is actually a memorial, but one could be excused for mistaking it for a temple. Sharing a huge city block with a pair of theatres (huge, almost identical buildings) the memorial itself is a huge blue and white building with a giant bronze statue of the Generalissimo himself as the centrepiece. Seated with a benevolent look on his face and guarded by two unmoving guards and full regalia, it would have been a fitting tribute had he not commissioned it himself before he died. Still, whatever place he ends up holding in historys pages, his good side will be preserved here. Going downstairs you find a museum of his achievements, mostly military. Two of his cars reside there flanked by huge photos of his glorious moments. There are also numerous other exhibits there. I saw some very nice calligraphy and a science display, all in Chinese.

Then it started raining.

I waited it out at Taipei main station, then headed over to the 2-28 Peace Park. I didnt know the story of the park at the time, but thought it was rather nice. Once I heard about the meaning behind it, it made a lot more of an impact.

I headed over to Sun Yat Sen Memorial late in the afternoon. Like its cross-town cousin, its a huge memorial to the Father of the Chinese nation and falls on the borderline between memorial and temple. The building itself is massive and alongside the statue of the Man himself, it houses a museum outlining his achievements as well as several art galleries and an auditorium. The surrounds are equally impressive and arguably more deserved than Chiangs, but to see them both, one would think that they shared an equal role in making Taiwan what it is today. Sun Yat Sen is being used increasingly by both the Taiwanese and Mainland Chinese in favour of Chiang Kai Shek and Mao Zedong in term of important national figures. Given the revelations of the last ten years or so its easy to see this memorial becoming more and more relevant.

It is also a short walk from the new downtown area, which includes Town Hall, World Trade Centre and the (maybe) worlds tallest building, Taipei 101. I walked over and had a look before catching the subway back to the Js place.

I got back before he was home from work. After he cleaned himself up, we jumped back on the bike and out into the seething traffic. We headed to Gonguang, where the shopping area becomes a lively night market after 7pm. It all seems so disorganised to look at it; a random sprawl of clothing and food stalls along the various alleyways, but it somehow hangs together. The locals all congregate around there too, making for a crush of people. The sights and sounds are all amazing, even more so if its your first time to see it. I can see that some people might not like it but it really is incredible. The smells from the food stalls are alternatively inviting and repelling, the aroma of the fresh juice to the pungent odour of the stinky tofu. With minimal trouble we found, ordered and ate what must surely be Chinese food at its most authentic. The cost is cheap, service is quick and you eat in the streets, keeping out of the crowd and wiping the sweat off your face. I could have easily spent more than the few hours that I did looking at the stands and trying all the exotic foods, but things wind up about ten oclock.

Back on the bike and to another evening finished at Cathys.


Monday, August 15. 2005
On Friday night, I finally got round to something I've been wanting to do for ages. I added half a gig of RAM to my laptop. It's been good, though I haven't got to officially testing it with anything. It loads up much faster and is much more stable. I have a feeling it's going to make me lazy - the damn thing really needs to be cleaned up and possibly have the OS reinstalled - something I've been talking about for about three months I think.

On the subject of upgrades, it's been a while now but I finally bought myself a decent helmet, and a pair of carbon-fibre/kevlar riding gloves. The helmet and gloves make me feel much safer, not to mention more like the rightful KING OF THE ROAD which I am.

The bike has also had an upgrade of its own - and that happened even longer ago. The 125cc bore was replaced with a 150cc bore, giving me 20% more boredom. Geddit? It's much quicker off the line now, though the top speed has mysteriously lost 10% or so; I put it down to the carby not being able to keep up (fuel pump diaphram issues maybe?) Fuel consumption has also risen proportionately to the bore size.

Lastly, tonight I upgrade HotD's engine - we're now running Serendipity 0.8.3, for the curious.

I don't care what you say

Friday, August 12. 2005
...but watching Cameron Diaz and Lucy Loser ham-fist their way through the pathetic Japanese dialogue in Kill Bill is nothing short of excrutiating. It's the celluloid equivalent of a kanji tattoo, dipshits.

This just in

Thursday, August 11. 2005
Editor's note: Right on cue, KC emails me a post to put here his behalf. Did you know that Pavlov really used cats? j

I apologise to no-one for my silence. Penny Arcade is iMode friendly and I say, hear hear! Back that shit up, back it up now and back it up good. Hard drives are fragile, like secrets written on eggshell. For many reasons mostly unknown, my computer will not run applications more demanding than Skype without dying and I can no longer save to the HD with any confidence. I have things to say but it is trapped on compressed sheets of dead trees. Road trip? Yes, as the J tells it, too. Details next week. Maybe. It has been a little pedestrian lately, but this time everything is above board and legit. A first, that. We will have a new author,too. You all need to look out. There will be a prize to anyone who can send in a photo of themselves on platform one of Kyoto ("The Big K") station. Really.

KC sera sera

Thursday, August 11. 2005
The last two weeks or so (I'm not exactly sure when it began) mark the end of the longest period of mutual, convenient broadband access for KC and me. For the past year and a half, we've struggled to have broadband at the same time in the last 18 months or so. In fact, one of us gaining such access was usually an omen that somethig was going to happen at the other end. As it stands, I am in the ascendant. KC is in shadow - for a number of reasons.

He's gone away on a "road trip", but as he possesses no car, and no driver license for any country in the world, that's just his term for a holiday. He's heading out of the big city and uh, into some... other... big cities. When KC does this, he'll usually tell me apologetically that he'll be "unable to post". He then follows this up with breathless, verbose accounts of what he's doing wherever he encounters the internet, or by sending emails, through his phone, to me to post on his behalf.

Anyway, I know that he can't read Penny Arcade right now, but if he could, I'm sure he'd appreciate this, given the problems he's been having with his hard drive.

In other news, today is Chinese Valentine's Day. It actually has a real name 中國情人節 sounds a bit lame, though people more familiar with Japanese should recognise 七夕. I've been given a pink shirt with "Hawaii" on it, which I'm required to wear tonight. Of course there is a story behind it, which I'll get to posting soon, hopefully with photos of the said shirt.


Tuesday, August 9. 2005
When you lead the semi-nocturnal, agoraphobic life that I lead, and when, after a night of insomnia, you venture outside at 6am for the first time in months, you can not but be shocked by just how damn bright it is at that time.

Some fiction. By a fucking wanker.

Tuesday, August 9. 2005

The air outside was still thick, and although summer was almost over the heat was not. It was bearable though, as I opened the throttle the air felt cooler as it rushed by my skin. Occasionally I would pass stores with incredibly powerful air conditioning for the purpose of luring customers; so powerful it spilled into the street and chilled me as I sped past.

Continue reading "Some fiction. By a fucking wanker."

This isn't paranoia

Saturday, August 6. 2005
Come closer! And for god's sake don't speak too loud. God knows they're probably trying to tape this too.

I've known for a while they're on to me, but it wasn't until the other night that I saw the first proof of it. They're getting careless, or more cocky about it. I think it's the latter. A patrol car flagged me down while I was riding home the other night. I was riding, well, over the speed limit and I thought they were going to book me for that. It was crazy - they were waving their illuminated traffic control batons out the window of the patrol car.

I pulled over. Agents. I'd never seen them move this fast before. Before I'd even realised it, they were out of the car and the one from the passenger seat was asking me something I didn't understand. I opened the visor of my helmet and said, "Sorry?"

Always better to pretend you didn't speak English.

"Sorry?" said the driver. "Are you drunk?"

Whoa. I'd never heard one speak English this well. Sure normally they can ask a few questions, and I'd heard rumours of agents who speak English really well but this was the first time I'd seen it myself.

"No," I answered hotly. But before I spoke he'd already put his face down towards mine to smell the word no come from my lips. Here, the breath test almost seems more important than actual breathalizing.

Luckily, I was dry as their senses of humour. They were satisfied with that, but they still got stuck into my girlfriend. In Chinese they asked, "Are you drunk?"

"Me?" She'd been silent up until then. It's part of our routine when this happens.

"The way you're slumped over holding him, it looks like you're drunk."

"I'm not drunk!" She protested.

"Fine. Whatever." They were already getting back in the patrol car. Really, I'd never seen them move so fast before. I'm not really sure what difference it makes if she's drunk; she's not riding the damn bike, right?

I felt hollow. I guess they didn't believe me but were content with putting the wind up me. For once, I wished I'd been breathalized, just to prove it. They're getting more cocky though. If that was the end of it I would've just brushed it off as an exception. But a day later, they'd seeded the weather. I know this sounds crazy but you've got to believe me. The rain didn't stop for two and a half days. That isn't natural. And as it happened, I was stuck at her place, no wet weather gear, with a bike that is famous for breaking down in heavy rain. I wasn't going anywhere.

Now, normally, guys with girlfriends as good-looking as mine wouldn't complain about being stuck for three days together with nowhere to go while the rain pours down, but I'm beginning to suspect they've gotten to her too. What else can explain her absence for hours at a time; when she came back she'd encourage me to check my email. They might've even got her to drug whatever I was drinking - I spent most of my time dozing groggily. I think we went outside twice for supplies. The streets were empty, or should I say emptied. I think they were trying to get at my mind.

So here I am, hiding out and considering what I'm going to do next. The toilet is backed up - that must be them too - and full of shit. I'm chain-smoking like it's going out of fashion and I'm not certain they haven't put something in the cigarettes too. Listen, it's better if you don't tell anyone. You don't know who you can trust. I'll... figure this out on my own.

Indignant, outraged

Tuesday, August 2. 2005
I found out not long after my return that my favourite coffee chain, Dante, had jacked up the price of its latte from NT$50 to NT$80, a whopping 60% increase. Now, while NT$80 still isn't a lot of money, 60% pisses me off, and it also means that Dante is fast losing its grip on being the cheapest and best coffee around. Starbucks can suck my fat wang.

After ten cups of coffee and you're still not here@
the_j at house-of-the-dragon dot com