Learning to play the Piano

In a fit of ADHD spontaneity I went out and bought a keyboard. I’ve been wanting to play an instrument again for awhile. I played cello when I was a child and gave it up as I got tired of lugging that instrument to and from school.

Maybe one day I can play like in Kids on the Slope anime.

I did try the guitar and ukulele but I really hate the feel of the strings on the pads of my fingers. It’s a tactile thing for me.

I decided to go with a keyboard rather than piano because it is great to plug in your headphones and not disturb anyone. Also the portability is nice. And I figure if I keep it up and upgrade I should be able to give this one to my future grandkids.

I went with the Casio CT-S1 61 key. It is $299 CND. It has full size keys and is touch sensitive which were must haves. The sound quality is great. It is everything a beginner needs. I also bought the stand and bench. I didn’t intend to but the desk I had originally set it up on was giving my wrists a severe ache. I knew I had to improve the set up. The stand and bench was just over $100 for both.

I bought a year subscription to Flowkey. I use my Ipad and Flowkey knows if I’m hitting the correct key. I have no problem recommending Flowkey but I still wonder if Pianote would have been a better choice. The Pianote tutorials online are very good and they seem to have a really good platform app as well. If Pianote goes on sale I will buy it as well to try it out.

Currently I am learning scales and chords and can play some simple to hand songs. I am loving it and I’m happy I’m not rotting my brain scrolling on my phone as much.

Most stunning quest in FFXIV.

Look at stunning this looks!

Beautiful!

If you haven’t bothered to finish the Doman Enclave Restoration quests I highly recommend it. The visuals like the two above are just gorgeous. The story builds each week and is charming. And when you finish it all, you get this great glamor to purchase. The Yanxian Merchant Haori is just the style I love. Just do it…do the quests there….do it…save the enclave.

Holyland Manga – So much bad ass!

I am rereading all my old favorites to see how they hold up after so many years and then I aim to compile my ultimate tier list of the best of the best. I started Holyland again last night and read 40 chapters before I passed out! I just couldn’t stop reading.

Holyland by Kouji Mori https://myanimelist.net/manga/3285/Holyland is amazing. I really believe this series would be so much more popular if the character design was…not so unattractive. I know it’s mean but if you look at the faces they are very raw. It’s a bit jarring at first but you quickly adapt and begin to not notice as the story and characters are so good.

Ugly faces…. 😦

With the popularity of MMA, I feel this series if relaunched could be massive. There is a live action but it’s very hard to find online. I did watch it but felt it could have been amazing with a bigger budget.

The story is of a boy so badly bullied that he stops going to school and thinks of taking his life. He decides to get a boxing book to learn how not to box but more to learn how not to get hit by the punches so much. While locked in his room he starts drilling the basic boxing punches day after day. When he ends up going out and gets cornered by thugs…low and behold his punch connected and in a devastating fashion. Wondering if it’s a fluke he goes and gets in another fight and he wins again. This starts him on a crazy journey of getting better and fighting for his existence on the streets.

As someone who has zero experience street fighting this manga will tell you the technical fighting stuff without being boring. It just all flows great together.

If you like Yankee, MMA, street fighting genres this is a must read.

New Adventures in FFXIV.

The crush with Estinien is over. Adult Varshahn is my eye candy now.

Also the new quests and dungeons are great! Loved every moment of doing it in my NPC group. As a very old and not so social person, running dungeons with NPC’s is perfect. If I want to break for a drink I don’t have to worry about inconveniencing others. Playing with NPC’s feels more like Dragon Age gameplay and I love that.

My Island Sanctuary has become a beach haven for every wind-up minion I was allowed to pop down. Seeing them run around and talk is great. That was one thing I did like about in WoW with garrisons was having a pet toodle about. I’m a leisurely levelling up the island. I am in no rush.

My Tier rankings for CC PVP – FFXIV

I’ve only played CC using these seven classes but here are my rankings. This is solely based on how much fun I have playing them. Scholar is number one as I feel I can stay alive in the circle and spread damage over and over. You might not notice while playing the actual damage you are doing but when the end stats come up it is so easy to be at the top for damage. If a Scholar is low dps they need to watch a guide on how to spread the dots effectively.

Samurai is on par with Scholar for me. I feel well protected as I dash, slash, dash, slash away. The payback is immediately felt unlike Scholar and that is why it feels so satisfying to play. If you can have your limit break go off perfectly you can take down 3-4 enemy players at a go….total power!

Monk and Ninja I just need to get more comfortable playing. They could move up in my tier if I get better. I do prefer a more in your face pvp experience and with Ninja it is so hard for me to be patient and wait for that perfect moment.

Machinist has a wonderful limit break spells that feels amazing but other than that it is a really simple class to play and can feel easy mode compared to other classes.

Astrologian and Summoner are kinda of meh. I just have more fun playing Scholar than these casters.

Now the question is what class to try next. A tank seems logical but which one? Dragoon and Red Mage look fun as well.

Reading Old Manga – Yu Yu Hakusho, Bleach & One Piece

I’ve been working away at reading older titles. The Drifting Classroom from the 70’s was so good I plan on reading some more 1970s titles.

Next I caught up to the current chapter of One Piece. I really get why it is considered the GOAT for many fans. While I wouldn’t put it as GOAT, it would be on my S tier list for sure. I need to read Hunter X Hunter and Slam Dunk again to see where I would rank it amongst them. The best thing about One Piece is the art work. The detail in background faces and expressions are great. You do a disservice not really analyzing each panel as there is so much extra sauce. On the negative I felt each arc could have wrapped up faster. I get why they slog it out for the sales but I couldn’t help feeling I just wanted the arc to be over to get on with the story. The arcs I liked the best are the Water 7 Arc, Thriller Bark Arc, Amazon Lily Arc and the Impel Down Arc.

I read Bleach to the end of the Soul Society Arc many moons ago. I couldn’t remember why I didn’t keep reading it. So I recently started binging Bleach the anime. I got to the Bount Arc and it all came back. It’s not bad but just not engaging. I have kept trying to watch and will finish but I’m just not super hyped. I love the characters, I love how they don’t feel cartoonish (except Kon) and I especially love the background music. They have an edgy intense music that plays when shit hits the fan and it really builds the mood. Bleach will always be a low A tier but it had the potential for S tier.

I started to read Yu Yu Haksho after the announcement of the Netflix adaption. I had watched the anime but honestly forgot so much other than the tournament arc. The manga has a great start. Nothing beats a character that you hate at the start but they write it so well you end up loving them…Kuwabara! Actually I think Togashi excels in making every side character as interesting as the protagonist and that is what makes a manga S tier. It has dropped off a bit as I’m getting really deep in the story. I have read how he struggled towards the end and you can see it in the flow of story and artwork consistency but it’s still great.

As for the Netflix adaption, I’m really worried. The teenagers look like adults in wigs. Kuwabara doesn’t have the iconic Yankee red hair which I feel is a big mistake. Kurama looks like the cheapest cosplay wig of Ebay and Hiei is the worst representation of them all. When reading the manga Hiei would rank #1 fan favorite character polls and my old dinosaur self was perplexed. Then I started to think about how Hiei is tiny and small compared to the rest of the crew but still bad ass. Maybe young Jump readers who were small, dorky and felt left out at school had a character they could aspire to be. The Netflix Hiei looks like he is 30 years old. Why can’t they cast a 13 year old? At least he would look the part.

Next manga to read will be: Hunter X Hunter, Gintama and Full Metal Alchemist. I have watched the anime for all three but never read the mangas.

The Drifting Classroom is top tier scary.

The Drifting Classroom by Kazuo Umezu is one of the scariest things I’ve ever read.

While it was written in 1972 it never stopped amazing me how fresh it felt even though the artwork looks it’s age. Is the art work bad? Not even in the least but it does have a style that isn’t in vogue now. But when you have such a solid story that never wavers in intensity the art work won’t bother you.

I can see how all modern horror have borrowed aspects of this masterpiece that I sadly never heard of before this summer.

In the aftermath of a massive earthquake, a Japanese elementary school is transported into a hostile world where the students and teachers are besieged by terrifying creatures and beset by madness.

Out of nowhere, an entire school vanishes, leaving nothing but a hole in the ground. While parents mourn and authorities investigate, the students and teachers find themselves not dead but stranded in a terrifying wasteland where they must fight to survive.

https://www.amazon.ca/Drifting-Classroom-Perfect-Vol/dp/197470937X

It’s a recession…no more Fantasia!

Instead of spending more money on Fantasia I decided to just roll a new toon on a different server. (I’m really cutting down on extra expenses.) This doesn’t bother me in the least. I love my Au’Ra but I love my new Lala too! ❤

Also I love RPG stories so I get to experience it a second time without the “hurr durr” noobness of my first playthrough. I am also changing all the voice acting to Japanese. Firstly so I can compare which voice actor I prefer and secondly it will force me to read the text bubbles. Who knows how much story I tuned out the first time.

So far Alphinaud and Minfilia are way better in Japanese. I think I like the Alisaie better in Nihongo too. But English Merlywb in the first act is perfect.

I gave up mucho subs so I don’t fell guilty buying this Shiba.

Goodbye Netflix, goodbye Crunchyroll, goodbye gym membership, goodbye Disney+ (won’t miss you), goodbye azuki, goodbye Pimsleur.

I don’t feel guilty spending almost $50.00 on a mount and glamour now.

As for anime, I’m using Tubi so I can stream a pretty good catalogue for the moment til I get bored and resub. Crunchyroll’s prices are pretty high. I can afford it but it’s the principle! I’m going to explore free stuff for a bit and that’s not a problem as I like vintage anime and manga.