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Anime Stats
Days: 48.8
Mean Score: 6.70
  • Total Entries137
  • Rewatched0
  • Episodes2,917
Anime History Last Anime Updates
Shingeki no Kyojin Season 2
Shingeki no Kyojin Season 2
Sep 8, 2017 6:06 PM
Completed 12/12 · Scored 9
Boku no Hero Academia 2nd Season
Boku no Hero Academia 2nd Season
Jun 20, 2017 6:18 PM
Watching -/25 · Scored 7
Boku no Hero Academia
Boku no Hero Academia
Jun 20, 2017 6:14 PM
Completed 13/13 · Scored 7
Manga Stats
Days: 12.1
Mean Score: 7.03
  • Total Entries38
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Corpse Party: Blood Covered
Corpse Party: Blood Covered
Apr 24, 2016 8:25 PM
Completed 47/47 · Scored 7
Cat Street
Cat Street
Apr 24, 2016 9:54 AM
Completed 37/36 · Scored 8
Ao Haru Ride
Ao Haru Ride
Sep 3, 2015 12:03 AM
Completed 53/53 · Scored 8


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deadoptimist Aug 11, 2016 7:41 AM
Wow, sorry, it took me super-long. I've moved out to dacha, and for the few days before that I'd been drowned in small preparations.

So now I am sitting in an old dilapidated house, surrounded (the house, not specifiaclly me, thankfully) by anoying shouting kids, local drunkards, people standing in the queue for water from the nearby waterwell, a whole zoo of different ants, dragonflies, transport planes from the nearby base and a massive hedgehog, munching fallen apples under our apple tree. My father saw it at night, and he says that judging by the gait and the taste for apples it must be a hedgehog, but looking at the size it could be a dog or a pig. At least something has a good time! Now it has another source of food waste.

Me — not so much I think. I mean, it pours, so going out is not a option, at least not for long, so there's no point in not being in the city. It's all rather silly, but, I guess, I can leave again soon, the forecast doesn't promise much in terms of sunny days. We thought we would deal with whatever the weather offers, but maybe not.

The best thing I've seen around so far is the success of my favourite brand of ants — forest red ants (or something, I dunno bout the proper name in English). They are building an anthill right in one of the logs of our wicket. They have advanced another 30 cm, despite the fact that the last year someone tried to hinder them. Their house was taken down to the ground, and a yellow plastic kid showel was left at the crimescene. It looked incredibly ominous. I am happy for the ants, and them stealing stuff is not my problem for the most of the summer.

So, yeah, if you've wondered when I'll get to the trash topics, oft associated with Russia, here I am, dacha has'em in abundance.

Also I'll have a lot of spelling mistakes this time, sorry, I don't jave a good spellcheck on the laptop.

Nowadays, I take it for granted way too much. I probably only swim in my backyard 5 times during the whole summer lol. It's almost become only a decoration.

To be honest, I think 5 times a season may be not so bad... That's some usage.

I've always been curious about a couple of things about the whole pool culture. Where do you take water for the pools? I mean, is it ya regular tap water or something else? That seems like a lot of water, so it must be sort of expensive. How often do you change it? Do you cover the pool with something when it is not in use?

It sucks that you don't seem to have any relatives that you get along with very well.

I got on with them, when I was a kid, dunno what has changed, the only thing that happened was some inheritance issues, though small and petty.
We had a huge family at the generation of my grandparents, I guess it was so big, that it fell apart, and now smaller clans grow independently.

So, Texas has always been known as the "Lone Star State". This is actually because the "lone star" is, in fact, an older symbol predating the flag which was used to symbolize Texans' solidarity in declaring independence from Mexico.

Wow, thanks, that's really interesting. And it's a beautiful romantic name.

which is only one of the reasons people think Texans are so fucking arrogant.

Hah. And what are other parts os stereotype?

[quote]It's cool that you told me though, because now I will make sure to check up and see how your search is going. I can't really say I have any struggles that compare, except that I have a minor case of panic disorder and regularly experience sleep paralysis. But that's another story. I always consider myself relatively lucky in my family. My mom has gluten intolerance (can't eat anything containing wheat), my dad is bi-polar, and my brother has epilepsy! I feel guilty that I wasn't afflicted with something more serious than the occasional (very small) panic attack. [/quote[
I hope you'll stay healthy and, preferrably, become even healthier! That's really not something to feel guilty about, even as a joke, since that means that you create less problems for your family too!

I wouldn't say that psychiatry works well enough here for people to know their diagnosis , to be honest.

I went to a few doctors, and in the end their advise boiled down to «live with it, but do better maintenance». Er, hard to disagree with the better part, so I think I am fine with the result, but I do lament my loss of 25% discount for glasses.

've conditioned myself to need either online competition/interaction or a customizable open-world rpg with an enriched environment (like Elder Scrolls)

I'd much prefer ACIII to happen in a later period of American history. The time chosen was interesting, but the architecture just couldnt compare to Rome. But, I guess, the series will arrive to the modern American scyscrapers one day, then I'll think about picking it up. Also I didn't like that they made parkour too easy.

Yeah, I am so ready for another TES game, but apparently it won't arrive unil 2020 or something. Bethesda wants to release 2 another projects first. That's really disappointing.

But I get what you mean, some genres do feel like a waste of time, and «press X» adventure games aren't high on my list as well. I've started to gravitate towards games with more mechanical depth, like Dogma, Souls games or Dishonored,

Huh, Do you play Pokemon Go?
deadoptimist Jul 29, 2016 11:11 AM
Wow, so you have a pool! You know, that so super movie-like American, I am thoroughly amazed. Lucky you!

And yea-ah… …the extended family, I also have some. They’ll probably call me on my birthday, and I am already depressed because of it. We’re on strange terms. They always find something to nag me about (without any involvement on my part), including the fact that I don’t visit, and I am mortally afraid to visit them, because if I do, they’ll be nagging me for not visiting and other things for two hours. *gets depressed for a while*

Sorry, that’s just something on my mind. I am the happiest after family holidays, when I have already called them, and can not do it for a few other month.

But yeah. That is 2deep4me, deadoptimist. That sounds like an ending monologue narration to a psychological thriller or something.

Ahah. No-o, for that I’d need to close it with something edgelord, like “And that’s why what governs the world is solitude”, or something like that, preferably in some gravely smoky voice.

But honestly, have you seen, say, a breakfast thread on MAL? Where people write something like “I eat cereals and ---, also --- and, of course the 5-minute ---.”. And you are like “Wait, I can’t even google it, where are you even from?!”. There’s a huge difference between cultures in the small things like that.

We like to treat every moment as some groundbreaking event in history, but when you think about the billions and billions of humans that came before you that had the same thoughts about the world

Historians say that people have always thought that they live in the end of times. But frankly what I am afraid of is that we can actually get to live in an exciting epoch, one that makes schoolbooks. It’s been so calm in the early 2000-s, but now the world has become too ”fun” for my liking.

So thanks for that knowledge about my own city lol!

By the way, the most interesting bit of info on the Russian wiki page is that it used to not have any public transport, also its current symbol, the star, I mean, looks really similar to the new emblem of our army – if you wanted to know my other weird impressions, which, I am sure, you didn’t.

I driveinto the neighboring city of Fort Worth all of the time, which most people in the area consider to be a superior city to Dallas lol.

Why is that? I thought that it was a smaller satellite of Arlington.

How so? I'm always interested to hear more about Russia.

Now that I think about it, I was surprised by the scope. There aren’t as many agglomerations around, so the idea of the urban area was sort of new for me. There’s just a city, and maybe some smaller bits around it, and that’s it, not a couple of bigger cities jammed together. And the urbanization doesn’t make cities really spread, as far as I see, but maybe that’s also because most people live in apartment blocks, not separate houses, so they’re crammed together more.

Maybe the Moscow of today is something similar, St. Pete sure isn’t. But our situation is also silly – the surrounding area was made into a separate municipality, with separate government.

I still have recurring dreams about high school. Most of them involve me finding out that I had a scheduled class the entire year before graduation and never attended/took tests, so I can't graduate.

Me too! I dream that there’re courses that I should graduate from but I have never attended. My father says that he has similar dreams dozens of years after school, so, I guess, that’s for life. Look what education does to people! Tis truly an evil thing!

Then you have the entire radicalism takeover by Erdogan, which is the craziest thing I've ever seen happen to a country in my entire life.

I agree that it is crazy. And it happens in broad light and with what seems like acceptance from every other country.

Why is August a dangerous year for Russia?

Nobody knows! But experience shows that it is. Kursk sank in August, the country defaulted in August, Georgia campaign was in August, putch was in august too. So people are sort of wary of it now.

Maybe it's just a language barrier thing, but why are you tense? Is your visit not a routine check-up? AND WHAT IS THIS ABOUT CONTEMPLATING LIFE? You can't be so vague, man.

I wanted to be more vague, but it’s hard to express hand wavings in writing!

Nah, I had some health problems. The main one being with my eyesight. There were some problems (I got a nice case of Sauron eye), and then I broke my glasses, and then I noticed that I don’t see shit, so I panicked. And ophthalmologists tend to not take anything you say seriously, so it took some time and money to get to a decent one. Looks like my astigmatism has gotten worse, but I also was prescribed a course of eye drops and eye exercises, because I’ve strained the eyes too much. I need to go do another checkup in the laser center, and they offered me to try and get a free referral from my district ophthalmologist, but I think I’ll pay this time, because the queue is 10 days long, and I don’t want to mess up my leave. I am sure they wouldn’t give me the referral too. Also I planned to get a discount on the lenses in my favorite glasses salon, but it looks like I won’t be able. Bye-bye, my 25% discount.

You see now – vague was much better!

So, basically, I am preparing to go on my leave and tour doctors. It’s finally hot – up to 27C in the day. I’ll move to my dacha for a few weeks, I wanted to travel somewhere in-country half-heartedly, before I got the need to see the doctors, but I think I’ll skip it, it’s expensive, I am not in the mood, and have other things to spend my money at.

The city is half empty, half strange. I am not sure whether it’s some special brand of people, or the locals are so unaccustomed to the heat, but the whole crowd looks decisively ragtag. The smells are… not good. This is certainly something that doesn’t work fine with the hotter temperatures. Everything closes, basically it’s a dead month business-wise. It looks like if you got into a hospital dying, they may leave you to wait until September.

There’re some half-baked holidays, mostly military. There’s the naval day, so military ships stand in the middle of the city, right besides the central bridges. They’ll hold a small parade on the Sunday. You can also stand in long queues to get onto the ships, but I wouldn’t. And on the 2nd of August the paratroopers will scare people in parks and bathe in fountains. I listen to the announcements in metro, and giggle, they’re all somewhat crazy like this. It’s really time to move out for a while.

How dare you. Lol I honestly don't have the expertise since I have only played through 1, 2, 3, and some of 4. I never played Brotherhood or Revelations, or any of the newer ones. I thought the story of 1 was a solid story and had good gameplay. 2 had the best story in my opinion, but the mechanics just got so repetitive and boring by the end. I liked the story and the mechanics in 3, but that was the glitchiest game by far.

I played through 1,2, Revelations and Brotherhood, and couldn’t get through 3 no matter what. Since that I avoid the series. The 3rd one was mind-bogglingly boring.

The idea behind the story was ok at first (before aliens), but I don’t think that the writing was that good even in the first two, also I’d prefer it to be a historical game, without the modern day connections and conspiracies whatsoever.

I like the first AC, because it offers a lighter, tighter gameplay, without the bloat of collectibles, economics, tower defense or recruitment. The second had more filler, but it was still fun, and after that the series became too bloated. But I also liked the battle system of Brotherhood, it made a good use of different types of opponents, you really had to pay attention.
deadoptimist Jul 25, 2016 2:05 PM
Ahah! Probably that's a sign!
deadoptimist Jul 19, 2016 12:14 PM
Wow, that article about barbecue you’ve linked… Wow. It sure looks tasty, but it’s sort of… a whole world of complex and interesting stuff appearing out of the left field for me. I would’ve never thought that there’re so many different types.

Did you go somewhere to cook or just made it near your home?

It made me think a lot too. You know, when you talk with people from other places, after a time it turns out that people are similar – we all study, work, have fun, try to deal with life the best we can. But everyday life is different, some details are different. Around this point of convergence it turns out that culture and environment do seriously matter.

You are right! You probably searched on the internet, though.

Noo-o, I just went with the most American variant, and bingo!

Baseball is a mystery for me, Japanese also seem to like it, so I often see some episodes about it in anime and manga, but I still don’t have the slightest idea about it, lmao. Well, I am familiar with the gear visually, and I know that there’re some cards that are a huge collectors item, but that’s it.

I’ve also looked at maps a bit, and turns out Arlington is very close to Dallas. It seems like a really great place to live – close to a big city, but not quite it, with smaller satellites, the climate and food are good, and then there’re the things you’ve mentioned about growth and lover costs of living. Looks really great. And a city built around sport is definitely better than some factory city. Also I appreciated the “American dream city” slogan. :D

Do you go to Dallas often?

The most surprising thing is how they have managed to build your college far from everything in an urban area this big.

Also it does look like urbanization in the US is different from what I usually see around here.

Haha I actually had to look up "white nights" and do some research because I had no idea what it was.

Basically the tourist season. The idea is to look at the raised bridges during the white night, that’s basically the main tourist attraction.

You know deep down what kind of mushrooms he was selling. You know. I bet watching fireworks on shrooms would be like a trip to another world. … Also, were those friends from high school?

Of course, I do think that psychedelic mushrooms were more likely, but I am not 100% sure. It was 11 pm, we were waiting for the last train, and then he suddenly appeared from underneath the platform and said “Guys, do you need some mushrooms? We have a whole backpack here below”. I mean - a whole backpack of psychodelic mushrooms? As far as I know, they're small. And we were like “No, thankyouverymuch”. The boys we were with went to put the fireworks in the ground and then came back, we all watched them go off and he just stood quietly with us, not pushing the topic.

Yeah, those were my high-school friends. Things just stopped working out between us at one point.

They are a huge problem on July 4th. My dad, who is a firefighter in the city, tells me that July 4th is often the busiest night of the year.

I guess, having a holiday with fireworks in the summer is a pain. Here people tend to set the grass on fire because they’re idiots. At least there’re less turf fires now, they used to be a huge problem a few years back. Nonetheless forests burn every year, and recently they have managed to lose a plane. I just don’t…

Talking about idiots, this weekend is so crazy. It seems you can’t go to a toilet without yet another huge catastrophy jumping into headlines while you’re in it. I am worried about August, it’s a well-known fact that August is the most dangerous time for Russia.

As for me – I am fine, thanks for asking, tho it seems that I’ll be visiting some doctors, and also I do contemplate life stuff, so my mood is a bit tense.

Good stories can also make shitty games when they focus their effort solely on that single aspect (ASSASSINS CREED, I'M LOOKING AT YOU).

Eh, I don’t think AC has ever been a good story, the mechanics were fine, when they were fresh, but now I can’t be bothered with the series. I just wait for a day, when they stop and go back to Prince of Persia.
deadoptimist Jul 7, 2016 1:43 PM
[quoteI can't believe it's been well over a year since the A.Z. forums ended. I've still never been so involved in episode discussion threads about anything to this day. It all still feels like it was yesterday.[/quote]
Was it really a year ago? Well, damn. I remember it as if it was yeaterday too. I guess, I should give it to A.Z – it was crazily good a source for flame wars. It looks like it became a closing anime for me. I haven’t been involved in anime since then. I don’t know why, but nothing catches my attention like that.

Even if our countries hate each other, we are still best buds. I'm pretty sure we would have been good friends in real life as well. You know, if we lived in the same country, spoke the same first language, etc.

Huh. Good to hear! I am always surprised by the hate thing though, but, well, things aren’t looking rosy for sure.

Crazy, isn't it? I finished my spring semester around May 15th-ish, but we have 2 summer semesters.

Yeah, it definitely sounds crazy. So are these some special sorts of summer courses for retaking? I hope you guys aren’t actually studying through all of summer each year.

But with so much effort put into studying it’s no wonder you’ve got an infection. Even if you don’t notice it, lots of exams take their toll. Don’t overdo it, ok?

Hmm… It’s hard to say with all the reforms happening all the time, but at least traditionally we don’t have stuff like that. Students normally finish their exams in June, and after that it’s the first wave of reexamination for losers and the end-of the-year paperwork for the teachers. Then teachers start to leave for holidays, and the next wave of reexaminations comes in autumn. However there may be orientation meetings, some stuff for the applicants during summer. In my experience most of the staff hangs around all of the summer anyway, though they are harder to catch.

All jokes aside, we Americans usually hold outdoor barbecues with family and friends on July 4th. … It's almost un-American if you don't watch homemade fireworks explode and light the nearest patch of grass on fire!

Did your family do barbecue? To be frank I have only a very vague concept of it in my mind. Is the stuff tasty?

Oh… wait! Homemade fireworks? Like… wow, really made at home?

People used to do lot’s of fireworks (bought ones) during the New Year. It was like a week-long cannonade, but then the government cracked down on it to prevent fires and injuries. They were banned for some time, now I don’t know. I definitely hear less.

The most stupid thing with the fireworks we have here is firing some during the white nights. They’re almost invisible, because it’s too bright, but smoke is visible allright. Yet they do it every year.

I am not a big fan of fireworks, but once I got a bunch of different boxes of them handled to me. I brought them to a friend’s birthday party and we watched them at the nearest waste lot. Actually it’s one of the anecdotes I often tell, because it was near a train station, and it was 11 p.m. and suddenly a guy with a backpack appeared from underneath the platform and offered us to buy some mushrooms. To this day I am not sure which kind he meant. He ended up watching the fireworks with us. *sigh* Though it’s also a bit sad, since I lost contact with that group of friends.

So grass fires are also a problem in the US? I saw grass burning at night this year, a fire moving silently in those big sweeping arcs, it’s a strange and worrying sight.

But ever since 2 major sports teams have moved to Arlington, it's now the fastest growing city in Texas. There are so many people in my city nowadays, it shocks me every time I go back home.

That’s really interesting. Which teams? My guess would be… (I honestly don’t look anywhere) maybe American football and baseball? Am I right? Am I? Eh?

And is the growth sports-based then? Or was it a kick for general economical growth?

I'm a sucker for RPG's. Honest opinion on the game?

It’s good! The plot isn’t quite there, but mechanics are superb. They’re a bit obscure, so it’s better to look through the dedicated wiki for better experience. If I needed to sum it up, I’d say that it’s a TPS aRPG with pimp simulator on the side. You need to make people hire your pawn to earn a type of inner moneys. All in all it’s immersive and fun. It was discounted during the steam sale too.
deadoptimist Jul 6, 2016 10:19 AM
Phew! I am extremely happy to hear that you’re fine. I was seriously worried! (Since I didn’t know about SAO, evidently.)

Caring for the well-being of a stranger on an internet.

You’re not a stranger. I don’t say it playing buddies or anything. We’ve exchanged enough messages for me to see a human being behind the letters.

short of that time I was IV'd with nitrous oxide to get my wisdom teeth out lol.

Oh, damn, wisdom teeth. When I got my last ones, my ears ached so bad, that I also hit a clinic. They grilled me for half an hour asking to bring some papers they needed, and then added “Oh, by the way, it’s because of your teeth, hit the stomatology across the street”.

This week, I've been super busy catching up with my final exams and then visiting my family in Arlington for Independence Day.

Wait, I though you are finished with your exams. Or will you retake some?

By the way that’s was the question I was planning to ask the last time. What’s with the Independence day? I mean, I know there’re parades and fireworks, but what people do except going to see them? Some special activities maybe? (Even I got some messages with the word “freedom” from American shops I have used.)

I googled Arlington and the majority of pictures show big neat graveyards, for some reason.

This is MAL. Where coherent ideas, well thought-out posts, and structured language go to die a horrible, horrible death.

I think that ads are more of a plague now, MAL literally drowns in them.

I wish I could talk about the new season in anime, but I've been drowning my free hours in Dragon's Dogma lately.
deadoptimist Jun 28, 2016 12:06 PM
Hey, how are you holding up? I guess, a sickness isn't something that makes writing on MAL anywhere near priority, but I sincerely hope that it hasn't come to this stage or, if, God forbid, it has, it will become better soon.
deadoptimist Jun 23, 2016 6:15 AM
Man, I’ve postponed my reply for way too long, that’s terrible on my part. I’ve desperately wanted to write properly and just couldn’t muster any energy (‘ll do it later, if you forgive me, I hope), but scrap that! I’ve been increasingly worried, actually I AM worried as fuck.

How are you doing? How are you feeling? How’s the diagnosis and the treatment?

Damn, an infection during summer is such a pain. Did they even tell you how you got it?

Considering that you are not new to headache, I can only imagine what the pain, that drove you to go to a clinic, was like…

But, if I may, did they connect your previous headaches with this (maybe a slow infection?)? Is there any hope that the current treatment will stop them from happening again?

And yeah, I always think that I am maybe terminally ill and dying. When something aches, I am sure, but I suspect the worse in general.
deadoptimist Jun 13, 2016 4:23 AM
Hmmm. I admit that I am not very knowledgeable about the economic state of Russia. I know that their foreign relations (import/export) isn't very good, but I guess I was just thinking of Russia being a world power due to their military. And you seem pretty content with life, right? I don't really see you complaining that much about your country and if it was really bad, wouldn't you probably want to move out of the country?

We-ell, nah, I wouldn’t say that I like where things are going, but I am tired of talking about this (talking doesn’t change much) and it doesn’t make for a fun conversation topic with people from abroad. Heh, as I’ve been once told – if you sit at the table with people, eating, chatting, having a good time, and by the end of the third hour you don’t discuss politics, the time, probably, isn’t so good. On the other hand, I notice that many people also start to ban the topic from the conversations to avoid confrontations and such.

Or maybe an NKVD officer doesn’t allow me, who knows, right?

Nowadays normally Russia isn’t considered a world power, from what I see in press. The discussion is whether it can be considered a regional one or not.

Calling it a true academic paper would be hyperbole lol.

You mention sometimes that people in the US are not very interested in the history of the Old World, but I must also confess that I have only the vaguest idea of the US history – I think, the majority of people from different continents know only of the stuff that happened close to their homes. And since the US doesn’t have that many neighbors it’s logical that it focuses on itself. There’re aggravating matters of world policing and many other countries being much older though, so I doubt the meme will go anywhere soon.)

The American popular culture though is a great incentive to learn more about the US. I am in awe of how much a popular culture can do, looking at the Japanese example as well.

By the way, since it’s come to this topic - I’ve been watching the streams of E3, and I sorely feel the time difference. The presentation by Bethesda, I was looking forward to, started at 5 am for me!

I guess it's just the feeling of tranquility, combining the beautiful architecture of Texas Tech and the calming silence while walking from classes. Makes me feel like I'm in my own world.

Being in such an environment sure puts you in an introspective mood. That’s the shift of perspective for ya, I guess! Many things look better, when left alone, to be honest, too. If you happen to be in the city at night and stand in the middle of empty crossroads, it also looks and feels so different.

I’ve googled Texas Tech, and I must say it’s really beautiful, like a fantasy castle, very old too. I was truly impressed by how the campus looks! Do the interiors still have parts of the old décor?

Haha not uncomfortable at all, although I may have a different view than you do because of culture difference. The legalization of marijuana is a pretty divisive topic among the population, with older people not approving and younger people calling for regulation.

Thanks for such a detailed answer! That is indeed kind of surprising for me, since I know only one person who have ever tried smoking weed. I don’t think we’re anywhere near the moment, when the question of the legalization can be discussed widely. (Though, of course, I also didn’t know that some guys in my class sold pills until after I graduated.)

I dunno, maybe making marijuana legal could’ve indeed been for the best, Russia has a terrible problem with heavy drugs, according to statistics. Heroin is smuggled from Afghanistan, often through Middle Asia, in big quantities, there’re the ever changing “spices” from Asia and, of course, synthetic drugs. Well, all according to statistics too, however a while back they even wrote ads for “spices” on the pavement illegally.

From what I’ve read, Mexico is in real trouble with the cartel wars.

I think you might have told me this previously, but how do you get a discount? Because of your job?

Yeah, they give discounts to the scientific and construction institues and such. They currently operate three stages, probably they want to be sure the houses are always full with relatively cultured public. As for me – I am happy to use the opportunity, and nobody can leave me out, since I gather orders for a department

Went another time yesterday and it sure felt we’re in the middle of the tourist season – I couldn’t guess what language the guys in front of me talked, and there were two groups of English speakers sitting nearby.

Ahhh! I wanted to see this so bad, but it's not necessarily a "bro" movie that a bunch of guy friends can go see.

I’ve seen good reviews, and judging by the amount of gifs used, a lot of people liked it. It’s a pity that you couldn’t find company! Though, frankly, I think movies are liberal. Once I went to see a movie with a couple of friends, all girls (some well poetic), and we couldn’t get to what we planned, so the others chose The Departed. Can you imagine? And I was suffering through it, because I didn’t know it was a remake of Infernal Affairs, which I somehow had watched before and remembered being much better. Also people do hide their tastes and guilty pleasures, but almost everyone has some. As the bronies subculture has shown young men are also susceptible to cuddly cartoons!

alas, not much reason to wear glasses with 20/20 vision.

So lucky! If the idea that glasses are goos comes again, think about the fogging and the raindrops and your glasses falling off! No-o, you’re better off without them!

It's kind of an elaborate story, but the short version is that I used the account to troll players in game before the term "trolling" was a popular word. i would sit on a dock where plays were forced to spend time to "fish" for food in game, which was used to restore health in fights once they were cooked.

Wow, it is indeed a long and illustrious history! You're absolutely right in honoring it, sir!

Uhg this manga makes me so pissed. One of the biggest letdowns I've ever experienced when reading a manga. The story had sooooo much potential, but eventually the only likable characters became Suwa and Takako.

I dropped it early, because the logic of the heroine’s actions was way too broken. She had a kid in the future for Christ’s sake! Why was she helping that guy through romance?! It was as if she was sacrificing her kid, and I just couldn’t stand it.

[quote]And what the fuck is Hatsuko Monster? What the fuck did I just read? How did this shit get green-lit to become adapted?[quote]
Ikr. It’s distasteful to the max. There’re a couple of shows and mangas like that, with a kid looking like a bishie. I don’teven want even to think, what kind of a fetish this shit is.

You can buy it premade, or you can buy the regular canned tuna and mix it yourself.

Thanks a lot for your explanation about tuna sandwiches! Really! They were sort of a mystery for me.
The approach to sandwiches is different here. I know that another popular variety in the US are the peanut butter ones, but we don’t normally have peanut butter. It’s recently appeared as a popular culture product of sorts, but I haven’t ever bought it. We, well, do mostly your typical cheese or sausage sandwiches (with one slice of bread).

And damn. For St. Pete being the second largest city in Russia, you sure are making it sound like it's a dwarf compared to Moscow. Is there really that much of a difference?

The agglomeration around St. Pete is about 1/3 of the one around Moscow, and the budgets are very different, since Moscow is supposed to be a showcase. It also has better climate and is situated in the middle of the European part – it’s a big railway center. The main source of my butthurt, as well as butthurts of people in other cities, is that because of the combination of factors Moscow eats away industries. The government, the lobbyists and the rich are in Moscow as well as most of the consumers with money, so places of work are bought off and destroyed in favor of ones around Moscow. This breeds tension. The opinion in Moscow is that they are the only ones who work and are better competitively. Excessive centralization is a bane.

I've had extended stays in colder climates like Colorado and I can't get enough of snow/rain/hail/wind.

I agree that excessive heat is more torturous, but it’s a bit too cold currently for my taste. The public heating is off, since they have already started the maintenance cycle, so it’s cold at nights. But I like it outside, the streets are much calmer, when it’s cold weather.
deadoptimist Jun 7, 2016 1:01 PM
I remember doing a report on mail order brides in the Ukraine in my high school current events class, but I never knew it was a thing in Russia.

I suppose that this must be a thing, and I know several girls who married abroad, though not by these means, of course. I suspect you may think that the level of life here is better than it actually is, judging by your reaction to the third world question. But it was a much bigger issue during the chaos of the 90-s, and, I won’t lie, Ukrainian prostitutes are a meme even here. On the other hand, Russian prostitutes are a meme too, which is also facilitated by the fact that few people outside of the former Soviet Union differentiate well between different Slavic nationalities or even non-Slavic nationalities of the former USSR, and women from other post-USSR countries may call themselves Russian for different reasons.
And it's true that the male to female ratio has been severely skewered towards females for ages, it’s been like that since the WW2, but I’ve read somewhere that current young generations are more equal. It's commonly thought that there're more women now too.

All in all it’s not a topic I am too knowledgeable about. It’s not that people don’t emigrate or don’t want to, but, of course, young educated ladies won’t post themselves on catalogues, and I mostly deal with this group.

Oh, wait. A report? Hm, it's a rather unusual topic. Did you dive deeply in the problems of the post-USSR life? What did the others write about?

I had 4 all in one week. I aced them all expect for my Spanish exam. Fuck Spanish, for real. I also decided that I would retake some classes before I graduate from the university in August to boost my scores for graduate school. I thought that there wasn't much difference in graduating in May or August, right? So I'm back in my apartment without my a college town where most kids went home for the summer. It almost feels like a ghost-town, especially at night.

Wow, it’s great! My congrats again, seriously, it’s definitely worth a lot of praise.

Actually, I think it’s a good call to hang around the college a bit. It’s an interesting opportunity to look at the place you’ve spent so much time in from another perspective. There’s a certain romantic spirit to places you know brimming with people being empty too. I am sure it’ll be an experience to remember and also a good opportunity to get to know the teachers, who are stuck there working, more informally.

And yeah, it was about a book written in 1972 by an American author called Endzone. The book is pretty hard to understand even though its about American football on the surface, but there are a lot of parallels it makes through the language of some of the passages that relate to the Cold War.

I honestly can’t say that it sounds great. I mean, I know that football is huge in the US, but I wonder if everyone liked reading in-depth about it. And the Cold War… You’d think that there may be better topics for young people of 2016 to dive into. But, well, I haven’t read it, maybe it’s a masterpiece.

drugs found on campus, etc.

Hm, if I may, I’d like to touch upon another slightly uncomfortable topic. From what I see on these forums, and looking at some news on the US-based news sites, marihuana is sort of big among the younger US population. Do people really smoke the stuff widescale? Or that’s just for some less intelligent individuals and you can easily avoid even knowing about it?

Yeah I'm not exactly sure, since I don't watch them very often. Although I have been to two Broadway shows, though. We just call them "plays". "You want to see that play at the theater?" Or something like that.

Wow! Were they touring with them? Or have you actually been to Broadway? I am sorry if the question is silly, but I don’t have any idea how it works. ><

Nah, I go to classic operas, ones by like Verdi, Wagner, etc. The deciding factor is the discount, of course, but somehow I’ve acquired a taste for it too.

I think you should watch it. I have a feeling you might like it, but I don't know for sure. The trailers and the promotions kind of fooled people into who the main character was, and a certain side of the fanbase was left disappointed.

Okay then. I guess, watching it was inevitable in any case, SW are a cultural phenomenon. Though I am very curious to see how the new movies will hold on, competition and diversity in pop-culture today are much stronger than they were back then, even for a leviathan that Star Wars are.

And maybe I should also watch Zootopia, while I am on it.

I only had read the Hobbit, but I never read LotR. I suppose most of the love for the movies would be diminished if I had read the books and didn't appreciate some of the creative changes Jackson made, but I just think those movies truly have everything you want in a movie. The trilogy is just an epic.

Well, yeah, it’s hard to see another version of things you’ve imagined, elves played by human actors can’t be as angelic as they were pictured in books.

Those round glasses, though *swoon*.

Really? Huh, the megane type won among the ladies of MAL, and I contributed, but I prefer oval or rectangular glasses. But my opinion is affected by terrible Josei characters, of course.

It's hard to take him seriously during action scenes when his coke-bottle glasses stay on his head when hes spinning around fighting zombies.

Ah, they always do, and it bugs me too. Fighting bespectacled characters are silly, unless their glasses are military-grade (which they never are), but the Japanese sure love’em.

By the way, where does the name deadoptimist come from? Just a creative name you thought of?

Yeah, it was invented somewhere around middle school, hence the pretentiousness, but I like the ambiguity and I am conservative in such things in general, so I continue to use it.

And where does yours come from? It’s very unusual.

I actually haven't. After being severely let down by the lack of ANYONE dying in The Lost Village , I've lost the will to be excited for anything related to anime.

Lmao, why did they need 30 of them in such case? It’s just too many without a bloodbath.

I’ve checked the anichart, and, well, there’s the adaptation of the already crap story of Zestiria, an anime about fudanshi (here I facepalm for a while), Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu Love! second season (basically the same as the anime about fudanshi), Hatsukoi Monster, which is reverse pedophilia, Saiki Kusuo no Ψ Nan, which I do not recommend based on manga, and Orange I also do not recommend. Well, there’s some hope with Mob Psycho from Bones and also a couple of shows to keep eyes on – 91 days, a-and, ok, Fukigen na Mononokean looks fun, but it’s Pierrot, hm… that’s all, unless you’re a Berserk fan. Also do you have any experience with D.Gray-man? I dunno, if I’ll get back into watching.

I, er, still haven’t gotten to Kabaneri (I've started Dragon's Dogma and it turns out to be addictive). Guilty here! But I wanted to ask, if you follow Kuromukuro and Kiznaiver. These too seemed like high-profile shows, but for some reason I don’t hear a lot about them.

It's basically tuna fish mixed together with mustard and mayo into this perfect sandwich spread. I had them as kid all of the time.

Ah, so it’s sold as a pre-made spread? I guess, it’s like the "tuna" they use in Subways.

Oh yeah. The heat has been picking up in Texas, which temperatures being 30+ all week. … I just wish I can get out of Texas eventually. The weather is too hot year-round and I've lived here for all 23 years of my life. I would like to move to Colorado or Oregon. I'd have to deal with the countless hipsters, but it's better than dealing with rednecks. How about you? Have you lived in Saint Petersburg throughout your whole life?

Yeah, nothing interesting on this front. It’s unlikely that I’ll move too. I don’t see any possibility to go abroad. And inside Russia it won’t be too logical to move to a smaller regional center, though maybe life’ll take me there; I am not much for downshifting and living in a village (I like my internet deliveries, thank you); and the only way to move to better conditions would be to go to Moscow, but it’s crazy competitive and expensive. Sadly, currently the country is divided into Moscow, which has money and work, and everything else. Arguably, St. Pete is also though of as a “lucky place”, but the amount of money and life is considerably smaller.

As for the weather – it was +9C last night, and we had a hail a couple of days ago! It’s said that it will be warm in July and August. Maybe. Also we got a warning that we’ll have a storm and a new hail. It’s sort of normal, but it doesn’t stop me from whining about it, I need at least 15C at night!
deadoptimist Jun 2, 2016 1:11 AM
Not really discussion worthy, but was watching a documentary about mail order brides…

Er, that’s a rather unexpected topic. Looking for a purchase? ><
That’s… huh, I haven’t finished the video, to be honest, since it’s all such a mess that it’s painful to watch, but they sure tried to show a street as if it’s a shop full of human product – it’s kinda scary to think that people look at other human beings that way. I wonder when they filmed, since normally the crowd on Nevski is at least 30% more hipster.

Congrats on finishing your exams! By the way, were there many?
You’re taking a break for now or already planning to start something new?

My professor must have admired my actual attempt to decipher the subtext, which is more you can say for 3/4ths of the class. He gave me an A, which means he probably didn't read my full paper. … There had to only be 5 pages of quality content XD

Was the number of pages set? Anyways, at least having said 5 pages of worthy content is already a big deal, maybe he didn’t mind the rest. Kudos for attempting to break to the core of the work, I am so tired of the “thematic analysis” I usually see on anime blogs and in some critical works. I mean, it often becomes half a listing contest, half sort of kindergarten shtick with giving out stars for “touching on a subject”, and I always think: “If you touch upon something, you’d better know what to do with it, otherwise keep your hands to yourself!”
Were you analyzing a certain literary work?

couldn't touch the ears or eyebrows (boys), needed to bring a Bible to chapel, etc. If you got caught not adhering to this by a teacher/administrator, you actually had to pay the school a $5 fine. Crazy shit.

That’s all sorts of messed up. No wonder you’re not particularly interested in the ritualistic side of religion. I’ve heard similar stories about the church schools around here. It’s sad that they only grow in number.

By the way, I’ve read somewhere that H.R. Giger said his experience of a Christian kindergarten laid the foundation for his hellish imagery.

I had a question typed out, but then I just assumed. The British call it "going to the cinema" while us Americans just say "go to the movies". Plays aren't very popular here unless you are in one of the main cities in the states, where all the talent goes to perform.

Thanks for the language tip! I guess, I did phrase it wrongly. In my case it would be “opera house”, right? Though, on the other hand, I know that the official English name of the place I go contains “theater”... Hm. Btw, fun fact – it was those guys, who have recently played in Palmira and go a lot of flak for it internationally.

But yeah, I'm not too much of a movie go-er myself. I heard Jupter Ascending sucked ass. It got really bad reviews in America. I do see the occasional movie if the trailers interest me, such as Mad Max: Fury Road and The Revenant. And of course everyone saw Star Wars. I still have yet to see a movie that surpasses my favorite movies of all time, The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Yeah, Jupiter Ascending is not worth even renting, if you ask me.
And, damn, I forgot the best one. Mad Max was really great on big screen. Just the right dose of action with a clear plot and few unnecessary bits. I liked it a lot.
At least I haven’t watched Star Wars. I guess I ought to, but I am not that interested, and while I was preparing, the fans I know have already watched it, and they weren’t eager to go second time. They told me that it repeats another Episode too much.

I was a big fan of LoTR books, when I was a kid, I read them dozens of times, but I burnt out before the teen years when people go play elves in the forests or learn Quenya. I watches movies too, but LoTR remains mainly a book for me. The movie series is impressive though, there’s no arguing with that. Did you like the new Hobbit ones?

What do you mean it was obvious? Were people just gossiping about his life all throughout the wake?

Not exactly, it’s just that I listened to the speeches, and somehow I imagined him sitting on the first row of chairs as he always did, and understood that I’d navigate to that corner, and he’d most likely wouldn’t have said such empty self-gratifying words, as they said above his body. That’s only my impression, of course.

I think you should watch it just so I can see if you get the same feeling too.

I’ve tried a couple of times, but I can’t get into it, I guess, for me the first and worst offender is the design of the protagonists, I dislike everything about him the lead - the round glasses, the yellowish color, the clothes; and the second main is a fighting doll-girl, which is too old and tired to be remotely interesting (at least visually).
I guess, I’ll make another attempt, but I’ll hardly be able to get through it, even for the sake of delightful discussions with Darklight.

Have you already checked the summer season? Is there anything decent?

Oh, and also, if I may, I’ll go back to one question from the last time. I am too curious, so, please, forgive me for disturbing the flow of the conversation. Are tuna sandwiched really popular in the States?

Is it hot currently in Texas? We finally reached 20+ temperatures, but it's not too hot yet. The white nights are already in full swing, so, accustomed as I am, today I had a lot of trouble sleeping (that’s why my English is so rusty today, sorry).
I’ve postponed everything and laze around while I can. Everything shifts to summer timetable, and during the change nothing in particular happens. It’s too fine a weather to think about complicated things too.
deadoptimist May 27, 2016 12:21 PM
No-o, It is I who should feel sorry for not answering right away to your last post, and I promise I do. I suddenly got involved into way too much typing, so it was a lot of work at first and then it was painful to see letters for some time.

But I am sure you’ve been doing your own share of letters. Are your exams finished? How did that 15-pages paper do?

This might be a little personal, but thinking about Easter sparked my curiosity. Were you raised in a particular religion? Or were you just raised to be agnostic, or simply atheist?

It’s basically the same for me – I was raised in a vaguely Cristian family, even baptized in early childhood, I still believe in something out there (Christian metaphysics sure is not easy to get away from), but I don’t practice religion. I must say I like your definition a lot, “casual Christian” definitely strikes closer to home than “agnostic”, agnosticism implies some thought put into it. I definitely gonna use this phrase from now on! Thank you!

As for the religion around here… If you look at it from a distance, it’s also sameish. Most people would be somewhat Othodox Christian (if they’re not muslim, or buddist; and Jenovah’s Witnesses nest not far from my home, and they attack you with “Do you want to talk about Christ” here too!), but the rest is, as everything In Russia, hysterical, political and messy. The governing religion in the non-islamic areas is the Orthodox Chistianity, it’s been there for centuries, but the Soviet citizen was supposed to be atheistic. The religion has never gone away fully, and the ban was much more lax after the WW2, still some of the older generation are uninvolved in the religion or, at least, not too accustomed to it (their parents or grandparents were in turn, however). Now the Church is back, and our current patriarch is aggressive and militant as hell, also with a huge taste for politics. Old soviet officials are all religious now, the head of the communist party claims that Christ was the first communist (yeah, I know, the Church is surprised too), Putin has his own confessor. That’s part of the reason for the unfortunate gay laws, btw. In the recent years the Church has become a lot more “with us or against us”, a lot richer, a lot more demanding, and it converts people in thousands, especially the young. Oh, and in the 90-s the country was flooded with esoterism and all kinds of weird teachings, the aftermath of it is still felt. In short – it’s a strange system, but on fast track to the church becoming big again, and, to my mind, obnoxious again.

Fun fact: the combination of Easter and on the communist marches is very historically true, since the marches were held on May, 1st specifically to get people away from Easter (in the same way that Easter was incorporated into Christianity from older beliefs long ago).

And Easter itself is bigger than religion, many people just follow the traditions they inherited, cause they’re fun. By the way, it’s celebrated differently. No bunnies involved, but we have special food - Easter cakes, sort of a pudding from farmer cheese and raisins (usually) called "Easter", colored boiled eggs. All of this stuff should be consecrated. During the first days you can exchange a special phrase with people and then kiss each other three times on the cheek. And also you can knock the colored boiled eggs together to see which one gives out first.
Phew, sorry for the long rant.

Psh. Not gonna lie. You would actually think that our country holds daily hamburger eating contests if you take a look at our red meat consumption every year. It's disgusting looking at how many people eat hamburgers every day, especially in the south lol.

Ha! I remember all the articles after the recent announcement by WHO! I googled a lot to find out what exactly the “processed meat” means (I mean isn’t everything that’s cooked somewhat processed?..), but it always boils down to bacon.

I must confess I have never eaten a Mc’Donalds hamburger. I’ve bought a couple of burgers in cafes tho. Restaurant burgers are a fad currently, as far as I can see, hipsters try to turn them into some sort of a religion.

And about fish – I think that tuna sandwiches are mentioned a lot in American fiction. I thought that tuna is a popular food in the US. Judging from what I’ve read maybe also salmon. I kind of understand the distaste for fish – it is expensive and not particularly pleasant to cook.

What has been your favorite movie this past year? It doesn't have to be an American movie lol. I can just look it up if it's Russian. I'd like to get a sense of your taste in live action movies.

Ee-eh, that’s a tough question. I don’t watch movies much, well, more like don’t watch them at all normally. I just don’t have enough time to consume three different mediums, so I focus on gaming and manga with occasional reading. I went to a couple of movies the last autumn, first time in several years. I think I watched “Chappi” (since I liked "District 6" and Die Antwood are fun to look at), I rather liked it too. I went to “Jupiter Ascending”, I didn’t expect much from it, I only wanted to see some space nobility, but even with low expectationa it was a disappointment, the action scenes were way too messy. Oh, and I also got dragged to “Leviathan”, which was a resonant Russian movie about corruption, and, well, it’s good I bough two packs of caramel for the venture, there was at least some good in that 2 hours. Maybe the shots of the northern nature were not that bad, but they are by far not enough to outweight the tedium.

My problem is that movies are mostly divided into action flicks and festival movies, the latter are frequently boring or obscure for the uninitiated like me, the former are kind of stupid, also I don’t like the whole superhero shtick. So, er, sometimes I watch random stuff, but I haven’t watched enough to have weighted favorites.

By the way, did you ask because of the theater that I mentioned? Sorry, I know, it’s too much to ask such things about a text, written about a month ago. It’s just that it was an opera theater. I can buy tickets with a 50% discount, so I go frequently.

[quote]Ugh I know, American politics is boring.[\quote]

Thank you a lot for the explanation! Well, despite all the criticism the political system of the US does make the country successful. I hope that it’ll be able to reform, if it’s necessary, and maintain the good parts.

Heh, on one hand, it’s bad to not know what’s happening in the politics, on the other hand, to follow the news is a bother and it’s not that you’ll learn much more than it’s fed to you. I’ve drifted to the second option, I mean, the news are ever-depressing, so I opt to watch or read them as little as possible. Apparently there’re some elections in the autumn in my city, but I am so super uninformed, that I didn’t know until I got the date showed in my face on a leaflet.

I'm really sorry about your co-worker. Were you close to him/her? Was his/her death premature and unexpected?

I wouldn’t say so. He was of a relatively old age – he turned 79, I believe. Logically, I shouldn’t be shaken – we were not too familiar, and he was a well-known man in his field, where is he and where am I? But somehow I felt the loss, he was good both in what he did and as a person.
During the wake it was painfully obvious that he was nicer than the majority of people present.

I guess I'm lucky to have been almost unaffected by death around me so far. None of the people that I see or talk to regularly in life have ever died. Even my grandparents on both sides are pushing 80-85, all 4 of them still alive.

That’s amazing! You’re really lucky here. I sincerely wish your grandparents the best of health!

Despite having a few relatives I’ve been to surprisingly many weddings (about 4 or 5) and funerals (3, I guess?). Unfortunately, some of the deaths were very close.

But, well, better get back to the gastronomical topics! And the most important and serious question of anime. So not liking Kabaneri so far?
Also thanks a lot for your kind words in the last post!
deadoptimist May 7, 2016 9:05 AM
Whenever I have a mountain of projects/papers to do, I end up sleeping a lot. Just thinking about them makes me tired.

I guess, it’ because of stress. I know it all too well after my uni years. The less time you can spare on sleep, the harder it gets to wake up, it’s as if your body also doesn’t want to do the papers. Nothing to do with it but cut the less necessary activities. …and then the days of "sleep, work, maybe eat" come.

I wish you best of luck with your projects!

People may think that you don't necessarily like them all too much or that you are faking your interest towards their friendship, but meh. It's just who I am.

Well, you sure are right that it’s impossible to build a healthy friendship on forcing yourself. Though I think that people do drift apart, if there’s too little socializing between them. After all there is a certain pragmatism in friendship too. But, yeah, it’s no use feeling depressed about it, you live the way you live in the end.

26 years old? You are practically the same age as me. There is still plenty of time to make new friends and make new connections.

Thanks for the encouragement, really! Lately I’ve heard many of the people of my age expressing the idea that it’s too late to make new true friends. But on the other hand, I know that one of my old pals has made a new bff and is extremely happy to find a person close to her heart.

Yeah I know it's on the internet, but I guarantee you that you are more interesting than all of my friends.

Ahah, thanks, you’re too kind, but I think that, whatever truth there is to it is, it’s thanks to the cultural difference. I am super boring.

I'm just too much of a coward to break out of my shell IMO.

You know, I've always wondered if a personality is made through the layers of the influences that accumulate through life, or there is a core you are born with. There is truth to both variants, I guess, but I’ve come to think that some aspects of us can’t be changed.

Er, sorry for the sudden bout of pseudo-philosophy. I mean, that maybe it’s fine that we’re comfortable in our shells, as long as it’s not clinical. And even then mild autism is en vogue!

I'll just move to Russia after graduation with my blu-ray box-set of Aldnoah Zero, so we can spend hours watching the behind the scenes material. Although I doubt I'd be let inside the country carrying a weapon of mass destruction.

You are a dangerous man! I have no doubt that an exposure of military personnel to A.Z will bring about a new civil war – Inaho party versus Slaine party – and ultimately the world destruction.

Yeah. If I saw him again, I'd have to challenge him to a vodka-drinking competition. Because that's how everybody handles disputes in Russia, right?

Of course! Or bear wrestling. But I’ve heard that there is a big queue for the English speaking bears with visa, so you could use the advantage and offer a hamburger eating contest! Ha-ha, got you!

[quote]What I meant was that Bernie Sanders is being liberal with his policies and beliefs, as in not confining to the strict recommended policies of the liberal democrats or the conservative republicans.[quote]

Thanks for the explanation! That’s interesting. I’ve even checked wiki, and it says that the Libertarian party is the next biggest. I have no idea how it works in the US, but is there a chance that it can get into power?

I've never visited Russia, but good god. It has to be better than prison or a 3rd world country. What a whiny brat.

The fun part that it looks like Asange hasn’t got to Ecuador, he is stuck into it’s embassy in one room forever (the discussion of whether Russia is a third world country aside).

As for Snowden - I get why he is hated in the US, but I think he is a honest idealist. It was time like that too, looking at Assange again. Betrayal is a tricky topic, it can happen for the reasons that seem good to he one who commits it. Many people betrayed the USSR, there were a ton of operatives selling info to the US, and it was so murky during the Civil war here for example… To be very honest, I think that USA may be just unaccustomed to this, though it’d be better for you if it stays that way.

Holy fucking shit. There has to be a movie dedicated to showing a first-hand account of this problem, right? It sounds like a tragic outcome for citizens that did nothing wrong.

Yeah, I hope that one day the events of the end days of the USSR, and the whole period of the USSR, will be studied calmly, without prejudice and hate, in all their complexity. But it doesn’t look like it’ll happen anytime soon, the polarization only gets stronger.

As for the events currently, and apropos the talk about the USSR – we are into the May holidays. We have two three-day weekends. First it was Easter on May,1, and simultaneously the Labor day. So those who like communism or simply marching could march. Now it’s the Victory day, so people will be able to march again. Now that I think about it, they could also take part in the Easter processional, or march against the celebration of the Labor day. So it’s all like a big marching festival.

I stay at home, play Dark Souls 3, occasionally go to theater and fry smelt (er, small fish, smells like cucumbers). It’s the time of year when here you must fry smelt, but it’s ungodly expensive for some reason, as if it was a sturgeon or something, not tiny feeble thing with fishing quota of hundreds on tons. I mean, really!

The actual meaning of these holidays though is not marching, but ancient and agricultural. People go to their dachas to plant stuff, so most of the region or maybe even country will be punctured by bent people – asses to the sky, hands in the ground. I guess it’d be hard to believe for you, but the leaves sprouted about a week ago and parks are closed for drying, so the gardening season is at its very beginning. I will be working for a colleague, who is on her usual heavy potato-planting duty, too.
The others use this time for kebab picnics. But this is considered a bit low-class, even though many do enjoy them. It can become not too nice, if drinking is involved, and there is the problem with rubbish left and potential forest fires. So if you haven’t gotten to any kebab-parties, you can safely say that you’re too elitist for them.

As for me – something always happens in May, this time it’s no exception: an important colleague died, then stuff happened at my father’s work, so it’s kind of nervous, despite the nice weather and the unbelieveably lazy atmosphere.
deadoptimist May 2, 2016 9:18 AM
Nothing like having the looming responsibility to write 5-6 essays before my final exams. 4 small essays for Intro to Fiction and then 1 big Spanish essay. Help me.

Oh, damn, writing for writing class must be especially stressful. With so much work, please, say – maybe a break in the conversation is really necessary.

Aww, why do you feel the need to be embarrassed?

There’s just too much of a difference between me never calling and me trying to be overly social and pleasant during gatherings, it also happens sort of involuntarily, and I always am afraid it shows.

Currently I see friends very rarely and maintain few contacts. But it’s the same for most school friends after school – you no longer have a common activity, lives change, everyone is busy, and I have never gotten with someone to the phase of frequently visiting houses. To be honest, I become more antisocial with time, and judging from what I see in my father, who I resemble a lot, I’ll stay a loner.

I even dislike multiplayer.

an asexual jokester

Wow, that should be made into a T-shirt print or into a new sexual orientation.

I was really happy inside because I knew if I faced him again, things were going to get ugly.

He seriously got to you, it’s good it hasn’t come to this.

'MURICA, BABY. Home of the terrible stereotypes.

It’s 100% universal! People are lazy, and stereotypes are pre-made, thus very convenient. They usually even have some truth to them, but, well, it’s truth mixed with lies and oversimplification, that’s the most damaging.

Sanders was actually my favorite by a long shot, but he was very liberal in what his policies were.

Hmm... And what do you mean under liberal here? Was it a problem? (I am sorry, I have an incredibely poor understanding of the American political system, I thought that a lot of people share the liberal ideas, don't they?)

Technology has advanced to a frightening level that it's almost a question if ground troops are really necessary anymore.

In the end it’s still people who fire the arms and die… I pray that another war doesn’t start, but the world is obviously smoldering.

I'm sure every country has something like the NSA, we just have the idiot that publicly leaked info instead of leaking it anonymously

Every government sure wants one!

Now Snowden is stuck living here. I’ve read he doesn’t like it and wants to go to Switzerland or to the US. I dunno, why he doesn’t appreciate his situation compared to Assange. At least he is not limited to one room.

O.O Now that is an eye opener. "The non-citizens are "citizens of the former USSR (..) who reside in the Republic of Latvia" help me try to understand this. They are Russian speakers that were living in Latvia when the USSR was dissolved? So they are closer to illegal immigrants to a degree? I mean, considering the rights that they lack as a citizen. Sorry if I sound feeble-minded. My American brain can only handle so much.

Well, it goes like this. You’re a doctor in the USSR. You’re born in Moscow. But after the university during the obligatory several years of work, when the place of work is determined by the government, you’re employed by a state institute, that works on a big program of fighting malaria in all the Soviet Union, and you’re sent to fight the malaria in Tajikistan. The program is long, you start to live there, and maybe you like the climate – it’s warm, the persimmons are tasty. You live there for 20 years, and then the USSR dissolves. Almost nobody among the people not involved in the politics was prepared for it. So now you don’t know to which country you belong. You either have to drop everything and go to Russia or to stay. But you may not have anything in Russia anymore, you may even be second generation and be born in Tajikistan. And regarding the legal issues – you used to be a citizen of the USSR, which doesn’t exist anymore.

You stay. You don’t know the language, since you used the Russian language, which was the work language of the Union. You probably didn’t pay much attention to the ethnic tensions, since they were hidden and the USSR had the “friendship of nations” public policy. But the Tajik want to get rid of the former ties, look for a new identity, so for them the narrative of difference (and superiority and darker pages of the shared history) becomes more important. After some time you’re told that this is their country and you should live as they tell or leave, and maybe also they mention form time to time that you enslaved them before, which you kinda didn’t do, you fought malaria. Older people from this group suffer, for them this is injustice, they’re bitter, often unable to learn a new language because of their age. Younger people may learn the language or not, but chances are they’re also bitter, since they don’t understand why they’re inferior in the country, where they were born and to which they have contributed their whole life, and want their national minority (which can be big) to have rights and attention as ethnic minorities in other countries do. And the locals may not like them too much, since they think that the Russians will work for Russia or bring Russian attention and influence back, also the narrative that Russians are bad has already been established. If you ask a Tajik (just in case - I use the name as an example of a former Soviet Republic, this has no real connection to the events there, it’s a generalization), they’ll say that Russians should leave if they don’t like the new rules, they should adapt as a minority and that they still carry the Russian imperialistic midset. If a Russian engages them in the discussion, it’s likely that in the end they’ll also start to list the atrocities, committed by the USSR, and list the negative qualities of Russians as an additional reason. By the way, this has led to tragedies somewhere (In Baku and Chechnya, for example).
(Of course, some Russians sucessfully adapt, and, in some cases, may even accept the new narrative towards their nationality or simply distance from the Russian Russians as a "better" branch.)

Oh, and also many of these countries have been parts of Russian Empire too, so they may have Russian population that dates way back (this is the case with Latvia).

So they lack the rights as citizens, because the laws has been made with excluding them from the citizenship as much as possible in mind.
deadoptimist Apr 30, 2016 11:02 AM
First of all – thanks a great deal for the explanation about the regions! It’s a huge help, so many things started to make sense. I can’t overstate how grateful I am.

Oh, and we do have hipsters, they’re called hipsters… Sometimes I see people, who could be put on a cover of some “hipster monthly”.

Uhg. I've had a nagging headache all day today and I barely made it through my Spanish exam.

Damn, a headache and an exam are such a bad combo, this stuff always happens when you need it the less. I do feel for you, truly. I hope you’ll get to the reason of it and remedy it somehow.

The ever-interesting prospect would be what would happen to the uneducated, starving, and semi-brainwashed citizens of N.Korea if the Kim dynasty were to fall?

Year, I also always think about it, when talking about North Korea, it will be so hard… I hope they’ll manage to cushion it somehow, but it’s unlikely.

sending Russian troops to fight against the Ukrainian resistance really soured relations with the western countries. I remember neighboring countries petitioning to join NATO after this was happening and it was a very surreal experience. I'm sure, as a Russian citizen, you have a very different view from what the rest of the world was given. Crimea as a whole actually does seem content with being annexed, so who knows.

Well, yeah, I wouldn’t even phrase it this way. Nobody knows the full truth though, everybody sees things only from their own perspective, and even then ignores some of the seen.

I wouldn’t say that the part about NATO is in any way surprising, since many former Soviet countries already have joined. Officially our government doesn’t acknowledge that there’re Russian troops in Ukraine, but, of course, there’re some. I haven’t heard any definitive opinions on whether it’s a really big contingent, or specialists, tech and personnel entering from time to time. The army is amassed near the border.

The loss of Crimea has always been a sore point for Russia, a lot of hard battles were fought for it and it means a lot for Russian fleet. I do know for sure that they had strong pro-Russian opinions even before this all started (not all people shared them, of course).

As for the events, I consider them tragic. Our government was stupid and lazy and corrupt enough to let it get to this. The carefully not-mentioned or outright denied, but, from my pov, very real thing is that in most of the former Soviet neighboring countries they in the end got a surge of nationalism, for the lack of ideological alternatives, maybe. And the butt of their nationalism are Russians. Basically – we’re the thing that stops them form succeeding, and our government controls their government, making it corrupt, cause we’re corrupt and the source of all evil. Nobody will admit thinking this, though. But there’re communities in the Russian internet, that gather and translate hate press from different countries, and we encounter Russian-speaking people from these countries on the web, and both of these sources give a lot of evidence for this claim. If you think that I totally exaggerate, you can look in the matter of Russian-speaking non-citizens of Latvia, who have non-citizen passports and are limited in rights That’s the mood I describe embodied in law. And there’s always the talk about NATO, some countries joined, other use it as a trading point. These moods are also what fueled the fear of the separatist regions of Ukraine.

I don’t try to advertise my opinion on the matter, there has been so much war on the net, that I don’t engage in debates anymore, but I thought it may be worth it to introduce a less known factor. Some take it into consideration, some deny it, I think it’s important.

Huh, I actually had to google what Victory Day was for you guys.

Really? Hm, I thought it would be known by the name, at least. But that’s good, if it’s not known, then the usual military jingoism may go unnoticed. (They show new military tech during the parades.)

But for most people it’s more about remembering their relatives, who took part in the war, paying attention to the veterans, honoring the dead and, for once, feeling somewhat better about the nation. That’s why the whole celebration now is hysterical, it’s like that last line people don’t let to deconstruct. The veterans die out, so people have invented a new activity – gong around with photos of their veteran grandparents. It sounds and looks extremely silly, but the participants say that the atmosphere is great and the spirit of community is strong, so, I guess, whatever floats their boat.

I wish we had a day for modern veterans, they’re overlooked, which is very wrong.

I guess the day a country invades the U.S., Armageddon would be upon us huh?

That’s the benefit of getting a new continent for yourself! Before the US Britian was the top dog of the world, looking on it and Japan, you start to think that island nations are indeed more successful, maybe because they’re not invaded so much and can focus on bettering their culture. Frankly, I think that the US is a huge island nation – Great Britian 2.0, which is pretty amazing.

We have an image of the bad-ass, ex-KGB, cold blooded killer as the typical Russian from action movies. I'm sure that's exactly how you are, right? I suppose that maybe I am scared of Russians, too. I played against a Russian player that didn't speak much english in high school basketball and he was very physical.

Of course, comrade! -_-\ What else can we be! But why was he there? Was it some sort of exchange event?

I absolutely can’t generalize the behavior of Russians, since I don’t deal with enough people and can’t compare. But, I guess, people may be rougher than in other places, since the recent years have been not easy, the atmosphere is never great, and, most importantly, after the fall of the USSR life was chaotic and it hasn’t exactly settled down. I think it’s true that an adult Russian develops an aggressive scowling expression and, sometimes, demeanor, but that’s a protective reaction. I’d like to deny it, but we’ve discussed it with some of my pals, and most agreed that they have it too. I don’t know about the level of actual aggression though.

There’re some problems when your society has been remade so many times, you don’t have a commonly accepted polite way of address (like sir or madam). We seriously don’t have a good way to call an unfamiliar person anymore.

Haha. For some reason this makes me laugh. It doesn't really translate well over to English unless I'm missing something.

The origin of this phrase is not very clear, it’s thought that it’s from a parody on a very inaccurate description by Russia in some French work. The point is that there’s an episode, where Russians “rest under the sprawling branches of a big cranberry”, and cranberry is not exactly a tree. Anyways, everybody understands, if you ask in Russian “Is there “cranberry” in this movie/book?”. The word also sounds sort of funny (kl’ukva).

There’s also a game in the Internet, where you start to write messages, as if you lived in a fictional world from such an offensive stereotype. The typical set of details involves half or fully sentient bears, nuclear reactor, valenki, ushanka, balalaika, queues (preferably for coupons for coupons), vodka between any two parts or if you don’t know what to say. A modernized version may also include Putin’s icons, praying to them, KGB or FSB, writing reports, coupons for the Internet, surveillance and canned hedgehog meat.

Er, I hope it was at least a bit funny. I typed way too many letters about the life here, my goal was to enetertain, but it may be just boring, sorry.

Honestly, with the two presidential candidates that seem most likely to represent the two parties, I wouldn't even be surprised at the idiocy. Even among it's own citizens, the 2016 presidential race is considered a prank that has gone too far. Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton were both the butt of a lot of jokes in the past, but now that the year of decision is upon us we almost can't believe we are in this situation.

It looks like Hilary will be elected, doesn’t it? Damn, from what I know, it looks like the world will burn afterwards, but, I guess, at least feminists will be happy. I hope that maybe the real president position will make her decisions more weighted. Is it looking good for the in-country situation at least?

And it’s sad that Sanders lost. He was interestingly sane.

The good thing is that the U.S. is one of the most transparent countries when it comes to knowledge of what our government is doing. I know the NSA scandal was a huge thing, but there are countries like China who even censor their social media to avoid discord. I sincerely hope that in the future, our two countries can mend old wounds.

Well, call me jaded, but I don’t believe in total transparency, though I do believe it may be better in the US, than in most other places.
The problem is that, as far as I see, no one is interested in truth, everybody is interested in the spin and campaigning. And even worse – the truth may not exist as a ready and comfortable answer. I think that in today’s world of media, it isn’t hard to create a war narrative from anything.

Ha! You are totally right. I don't want to keep you from your wild night club parties and your dates with chiseled chin Russian bad boys while I am writing comments on MAL, playing LoL, and drinking beer with my roommate on Friday nights.

*Looks solemnly at her Saturday night arrangement of Dark Souls 3, acidophilin (er, it’s something like youghurt, but with different bacteria) and a bunch of assorted fruit.* Did you mean party in the MMO sense? Oh, wait… wait… Sure, I may party with bad boys if I get so unluky as to run into pvp.

I think I prefer meeting new people online to meeting them in person. It's weird, I act like an extrovert in public and can talk with anybody, but I am admittedly an extrovert.

Oh, I totally know what you talk about, though I am not sure if the degrees are close. People are a hassle, and people in real life offer too many factors to manage. I also fill my talking quota through the net, though I do feel remorseful, since I lack networking. I also can maintain a decent chat during a gathering, it’s embarrassing, but I’ll probably even crack jokes and steal attention and feel embarrassed afterwards. And no matter what, I can’t survive too many personal meetings in a short time, I burn out. I am an introvert all right, yeah.