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Zaka's infrequently updated personal blog. Apparently za RSS import sucks less now, so here you go.

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Zakamutt

I’m not writing this for you. I’m writing it for myself.

今年もとある滑稽な癖に従い、伝統ありのヴァルパージス炎を観に行った。別にその滑稽な想いだけが理由でもなくが、正直な所、その想い未だ持っているだけは情けないと思う。

I met my soulmate about a week before I started the first, transitional year of elementary school. I guess that means we were like, six or seven years old? She was sitting on the swing in the playground next to an apartment complex, and for whatever reason I was drawn to her instantly – I broke off from my parents and greeted her, and we got along like a house ablaze.

The next time I saw her was at school. She was in my class, and it was only natural that we’d be inseparable from that point on. Or was it? There was another boy who by now I barely remember who used to be in the picture, but he moved away. I think at one point she – I guess I’ll call her M – told me I was actually her second choice, but that other boy had left, so she’d picked me. Looking back I find myself analyzing this interaction as heckin’ weird, but at the time I accepted this without feeling bad about it. I guess I used to be even more obviously autistic than I am now.

Soulmates, for those reading who have had the misfortune of never having had one, are a real thing. It’s hard to describe the feeling of absolute, utter 乗り, of flow, I felt in her presence. Sometimes I doubt myself – did she feel the same? – and I guess by now I’ll probably never know. But there was something there I have never felt interacting with anyone else in my life.

She and I were best friends for I think five years. For most of them, as far as I know, I was essentially a donkan eroge protagonist, going as far as openly telling other people ‘she loves me, but I don’t love her’. We were officially boyfriend and girlfriend to each other for a little while at the end, but the most intimate thing that ever happened was a hug. Technically we got best couple at a dance or something, but frankly what I did there was a performance, not *real*. So I’m left with the curious feeling that while I may have unlocked the achievement ‘kissed a girl’, though we never did do it in the French fashion, I have never done it when it truly meant something to me. I think it’s fair to say I was a late bloomer when it comes to emotional maturity, if I ever hit it.

Eventually we slid apart, gradually, seemingly as naturally as we were first joined. Different classes and different friend circles meant we rarely met. We actually did happen to join up once again after having slid apart, however, and it felt just like to old times to me as we took a walk together. But that was it; we went to different high schools, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen her since then.

今でも彼女を会いたいなぁっと想い、毎年あの炎に行く。 Mum told me she went to IT-Gymnasiet. 毎年「やっぱり居ないなぁ」って感じで炎の原始的な美しさを楽しみながらちょっとした悔しい思いも含む状態でいる。 She talks to M’s mum sometimes, I guess. 必死染みた所もあり彼女を探して失敗して、毎度悔いの有る想いを持ちながら火を観るのも飽き、家を向いて戻り始める。

今も会いたい。それだけだ。


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Zakamutt

…And you probably know about it already if you know me, but anyway, my own #brand is Memeshii Translations apparently. Since you’re here, have some information on the experience of working with the paltry tools available:

*The linecount had to be the exact same or the insertion tool would crash with an unhandled exception.

*Some lines had a linebreak in the original; these were joined together engine wise so they had to be line broken no matter what. Usually this wasn’t a problem, but some lines ended up short in english but still needed a linebreak so they look wonky, and the second line in-game had two lines that wanted to be long and couldn’t be split so it was kind of hell to fit.

*Weeb quotes 「」 had to be used or the engine wouldn’t read it as a spoken line.

*One line was turned from speech to narration for flow reasons (it was like suu haa or some shit) by removing the speechtag annotation in front.

*There was no manual linebreak code I could use (mandated ones were just CRLF linebreak, and could only been used for that specific line). However, the engine does automatically line-break on a character level, and seems to be more or less monospace. So I ended up doing some of the line-breaking in this truly kami manner, checking it manually ingame over like 5 iterations:

notepad++_2019-02-14_19-42-46.png

す@ is Sumire; あ@ is Azami

*The extracted yscfg.ybn file had the window title at the end in plaintext. But the title seemed to be read in 2 char blocks or something which meant the title ended up as either “The world ends tomorrowA” or “The world ends tomorrowb” after insertion. I fixed this by adding a space after the name.

*The nametags were in a different script than the scenario but they were just text strings, so I could just edit them

*Same for the exit message when pressing the cross at the top right

*Since we used the “spoken line” format I had to convert this to the japanese quotation brackets. Kotlin code for you to meme at:

N9GlK5Y.png

oh, java strings are immutable, fuck… fiiine I’ll your it your goddamn way

This is probably half the reason why any in-line quotes ingame are single quotes; I actually edited a pair of doubles because I couldn’t be arsed to clean up the script after the fixer code worked on it… or something.

Okay since you read this far some stats; I used Mediafire for the release because it gives download counts. It seems to update daily or something. First update was 63 downloads. Second was 89. I had 66 pageviews the blog release post on feb 14 and have 178 so far for feb 15. 89/244 gives us a ~36% download rate per view, not too bad. The About page seems to have gotten like, 8 views. The dedicated asuowa tl page has 7.

So uhh I guess I have to tl more shinimasu now.

fuck

 


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Zakamutt

Restrospectives are good. Posting on Reddit is not my style though and besides this is too fucking long. The Reddit tradition of describing things as boxes I am more ambivalent about, but I’ll do a few entries in that style I guess.

Jisatsusha x Yuusha First Connect
I found this vn in a MEGA archive with lots of now-unavailable doujin games. I think I got the link from moogy’s ask.fm a few million years ago. Curated by 2ch anons or some shit. Either way I was just casually browsing the catalogue and the name of this vn appealed to me for some reason, so I decided to try it out. I don’t regret it but it was, uh, mostly of meme value. The story has several fairly random 中略’s but basically involves the female main character biking, sort of dying in a traffic accident (wait did she kill herself? fuck the title certainly implies it but), then some UNIMPORTANT coming back to life thing I can’t fuckign remember and I think maybe there was some prophecy or some shit, then she wakes up again and is in an isekai with a VERY CUTE SHOTA THAT WILL SAVE THE WORLD and there’s this raising sim-ish? interface with a few interaction choices and stuff. Did I mention that oneechan lusts for shota boi very hard? Yes. 5/10
03/26

Soundless
already reviewed on this very blog. 8.1/10 read it god damn you
03/30

Sugar And Massacre demo
Cool but the prose is not close to strong enough compared to all the other elements. Would still read a full version god damn. These are some serious production values. That said the Kickstarter failed hard so it’s probably dead rip

An Octave Higher
Indonesian developer Kidalang builds a fantasy world, decides to take some inspiration from local history and mixes in some perspectives on communism with veiled crystallized version of the memes of production in mana potions, then adds some sprinkles of programmer humor and a decidedly nerdy magic system including university lectures that made me feel right at home actually. Kidalang writes it in English in the typical Indonesian prose fashion: somewhat poorly. Especially weird is how the whole thing opens with a battle scene since that scene is so badly written holy shit they really can’t do that well. But I suppose I’ve seen much worse. At its best it gave me a similar feeling to Discworld books; I’m somewhat reminded of Monstrous Regiment. Do make sure you read the second half of the game as the first half is a meme in comparison, especially the extremely extraneous character endings which I hope were added to satisfy kickstarter goals or something. 7.9/10
05/14

One Small Fire at a Time
A vn set in the same world as An Octave Higher but with a fairly different tone and focus. Protag-chan lives in a madhouse despite being rather sane, since she can’t use magic, which is unfortunate in a world where work involves repetetively casting spells at things. Basically it’s the old, memeier kind of sanatorium, but we should mention that it is not run cruelly or anything. Well, there is the whole thing where people disappear into the other building on the property when they get old enough though. How mysterious. A dark, tragic story, a few somewhat interesting philosophical ramblings from the characters that I had seen expressed before but nevertheless appreciated, a kinda sweet, kinda bittersweet end. I very much enjoyed it.
The writing is slightly better than in An Octave Higher, possibly thanks to the modest efforts of the editor, Ryechu. Not exactly well written prose wise though, still. Modest efforts. I guess it’s possible the original text was horrible, of course. 8.0/10
05/15 because I really wanted more from the dev after An Octave Higher

Who is Mike?
I picked this fairly small box up because Tay recced 3 million years ago it or some shit. It’s box in which how you open some boxes determines how you opened other boxes and in fact what your box opening tool even is. Rather out of the box. Horror/mystery, kind of cool, but not more than kind of. Also the official walkthrough is rubbish get something more detailed. 7/10
08/05

I picked up Cupid by the same dev because they seemed to have potential but i didn’t really get hooked and I while it was unusual and interesting I didn’t like the way the choices were done, I guess.

Evenicle
Evenicle is a JRPG, not a visual novel. It will thus not be discussed in this visual novel retrospective or given a vote on vndb, much like how I treat Ace Attorney. However I did more or less complete it this year.

Winter’s Symphonies demo
Leafcascade is not a good enough writer to consistently pull off this kind of prose. Otherwise interesting, I guess. Reminds me that I want to read Anomie but paying for things is not generally my thing when I could spend it on snacks so w/e. Well maybe it’s on certain sites… I should check

Yugami Kairou
A middling-sized box that when you open it contains a few other small boxes and a small piece of ribbon. The small boxes all contain their own small ribbon pieces and seem to have some conspicuous holes to stick the ribbon through. Eventually you get to the last box, but its piece of ribbon isn’t really long enough to satisfyingly tie all the boxes together. Realizing that you’re not going to have closure, you look at the small boxes again as more isolated beasts, and they are still kind of entertaining, really, but you kind of wanted something more. At least the use of ero cgs was unconventional in an unfappable but cool way. 6.8/10 but I didn’t read the addition yugami garou yet so if that changes things consider me beaned. Definitely got me interested in the creator though and I’ve got 鉢の底 downloaded for reading some time later. Download, along with other geemus from the dev: here.
11/29

Himawari (日廻り, the one that’s not on vndb)
Short, damn good graphics, why is the font randomly missing strokes, unhookable which made the engine dev actually contact me about hookability lol, wew that ending, very bimyou geemu but I respect it. 7.5/10 I guess
comp’d around the 20th of december I think

Uso to Makoto ni Oshioki wo
A short “ero-drama” from 10mile, packaged with another similar style of story by the same writer. As an “ero-drama” it skirts the line between nukige and not by sort of having a plot. Also the ero scenes are written with humor in mind and include some amusing fails like the girl being too short for 69 to work properly. Kami tier ending that should be an inspiration to us all. 7.5/10
12/26

Unfinished business

Being zaka, most of the things I started or played some of this year I did not complete:

Amairo Islenauts
I read some more of Yune’s route during various times of the year. She’s pretty kwi. I haven’t gotten the first scene of them actually fucking yet. Last screen I can find is from chapter 11-1… Masaki route remains stalled.

Hakusen
Read like the first 200 lines or something. Too high level for me rn really holy god the vocab. I mean I could read it if I tried, textractor can hook the text. I’d rather read easier chuuniger like Sanzen first though.

Sanzen Sekai Yuugi
Otome R-18 chuunige, it said on the box. Intrigued, I picked it up. Kind of interesting, amusing protagonist for sure. We’ll see when I pick it up agqain.

Trans!
I’m just reading this for better tlc, honest, nothing to do with it being a hot nukige at all. Have to say I don’t particularly identify with the female perspective thing I guess, but I can still fap to it so /shrug

Ie no Kagi
Picked up because some people said it wasn’t as pedo as it looked. As far as I can tell right now, they are correct. There are definitely elements and yes, the mc is literally a pedophile (though limited in his current crimes to taping girls peeing). However, it’s mostly focused on a suspense / thriller plot driven by the devilishly clever kami I want my daughter to be like this but I’m not going to have children though Sakuma Rika. Was unhookable, might be hookable with the newest version of nexthooker, though holy god there are a lot of threads to look through.

Kodoku no Yurikago (link nsfw, not on vndb lul)
Picked up because their next work, Himawari, was promising and also Kiri was memeing it. Denpage. Chopin is kami actually. My music drivers bugged out and started playing only scattered bits of pieces and I thought it was the game doing it. Damb.

Kotonoha Amrilato
Read again from the start, stalled, kinda kwi, fun, learning esperanto is realdeal dot org.

Umi Kara Kuru Mono
Cool suspense/denpage thingy I read some of. Some lines literally have 250 moji, though at least they’re not 1 sentence. No voice replay is baka (I think there might be some way of doing it hidden in the year 2003 interface somewhere but fuck). Literally moogy approved though so we know it’s bound to be shit /s

Sukisuki (eop so not worth linking)
Yuuki is cute and I’m happy I applied the first patch by Yuukianon because not properly marking vowel elongation in Japanese names bothers me way more than it should. BGM is kinda subpar. Did not get that far tho

Exit/Corners
For once this is unfinished because the actual geemu is unfinished. Cool mystery to the tune of 999. Final eps to cum out in february next year or something. Maybe then people I rec it to will actually fucking play it. Also maybe he’ll release it in something that’s not a fucking browser flash is a terrible engine for vns stop

Wagahigh (eop)
I finished Kaoruko’s route. It was surprising to me that people found it disappointing as it just seemed like moege 101 to me, which is exactly what they should have expected. Started a bit on Ashe’s route, didn’t get far.

Re;lord 1 ( eop)
Fairly entertaining. With my touchpad curently broken but to my swelling battery unseating it from its proper position I don’t think I can actually do it the way I want it though since the combat controls are extremely hostile to non mouse users holy shit the touchpad made things hard but now I’m having to use a ps4 controller and wow.

Iroseka
Started it up, eventually got through the common route, got some distance into Mio’s route, stalled. At least I actually got some h scenes wwwwwww

Shinsetsu Mahou Shoujo
Seems fun from the like 4 chapters I read. Sci-fi magical girls through spinal injection. I’ll read this when it’s hookable okay

Haruka Kanata
Did common route. Verdict: meme
Did precisely the amount of Haruka’s route that wasn’t yet the cool part according to the guy that recced harukana to me. Sucks, mate.
I’ll get back to this one day, totally.

Toushin Toshi II
JRPG. See Evenicle.

Y;N / Yin
Actually an adventure game, so no comments on contents if I can avoid it. Quit because I get too scared by horror, and stuff.


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Zakamutt

I recommend reading this one on my blog as forum formatting makes tables look like shite. Your choice though.

I’ve mentioned earlier that I think one of the reasons there haven’t been a lot of translation blogs on Fuwanovel is that a lot of advice the editing blogs are peddling could equally well be applied when translating. But how would that look? In this blog (and maybe series, but me and regular effort don’t tend to get along), I’ll try to show you the process of translating with an eye to using the structure of English writing rather than following the Japanese.

The great thing about being the translator rather than the editor (or editing while knowing Japanese, but that’s a luxury) is that you don’t have to go ask the translator if the structure of the Japanese prose, when copied, looks weird. You can just make the adjustment yourself, without worrying that you’re distorting the original meaning too much.

This post is primarily aimed at translators, but should hopefully be useful for editors as well. It is probable that some of the patterns shown here could just as well have been picked up by an editing blog; the main difference will be that I can also show how it looks in Japanese.

I am by no means perfect, and any comments or suggestions are appreciated.


In the spirit of leading by example, I’ll be quoting my in-occasional-progress translation of 私は今日ここで死にます (Watashi wa Kyou Koko de Shinimasu; ‘This is where I die today’). Me and Asonn have settled on the shorthand “shinimasu”, but the author’s comments actually use わた死 (“Watashi” with the last syllable using the kanji for ‘death’ that appears in “Shinimasu”). Thus the title.

Let’s start with three lines from the very beginning of the novel. Our protagonist 京介 (Kyousuke) has just seen a girl jump off a bridge, gone after her by jumping himself, and managed to get her out of the river and onto land. The reader doesn’t know this yet, however the start just talks about what you’d do if you saw someone about to kill themselves.

Japanese Literalish translation Adapted translation
「入水自殺、か」 “Suicide by drowning, huh.” “Tried to drown yourself, huh…”
ぽつりと呟きつつ、腕の中でぐったりとしている“それ”を見る。 While mumbling a few words in a staccato manner, I look at “that” resting limply in my arms. I look at the girl resting limply in my arms.
まだあどけない顔をした少女だ。 It is a girl with a face that is yet cherubic*. Face innocent as a newborn babe’s.

The adaptated first line is based on trying to get nuance right. While I mostly did it on instinct, we can motivate it more logically. In English, the literal version feels like something you’d say when starting to talk about a topic I’d expect Kyou-boi to expound on the subject of suicide by drowning afterward. But in context he’s commenting on the specific act the girl in his arms has attempted. Another consideration is brought by the second line, which shows that Kyousuke is looking at said girl while saying this. So we’re looking for a line that sounds reasonable spoken to a person that can’t hear it. Which is a weird category now that I think of it, but not entirely uncommon. The ellipsis is questionable, especially when cutting ellipses is something editors do all the time in j>e translation, but I have a reason; it’ll be in the next line analysis.

The second line features a thing frequently found in Japanese visual novel writing that doesn’t really agree with English style conventions at all: describing speech after it’s already been said. Frequently this is entirely redundant information in a visual novel due to speaker tags, but in some cases it will contain some kind of judgement or opinion of the viewpoint character that you might want to preserve. These kinds of redundant lines is a good reason to ask whoever’s doing technical work on your translation if you can just plain remove lines (for example, they might be able to program something that detects the translated line being exactly “SKIP” and cuts those lines.) However, it should be noted that cutting these redundant lines will change the flow of a text. If it’s frequently used in a passage, you may end up with a very different feel than the Japanese ― perhaps this is worth it, but it’s something to take into consideration. わた死 doesn’t do this that frequently, however, so we probably don’t need to worry.

This gives a bit of motivation for adding the ellipsis in line #1; it makes the line more mutter-y in a way that doesn’t make it look weird. This is one strategy for dealing with structural incompatibility: move the piece of information where it does fit.

There’s more. The line doesn’t mention “that” being a girl, revealing this in the next line. I’m not sure why the author did this -maybe the lines read better in Japanese that way, and Japanese lines in succession often depend on each other - but the technique just looks weird in English. Thus, we move the information from line 3 to line 2 in our adaptation.

The third line is annoying because while we technically do have a word that fits あどけない fairly well, cherubic - angelic, innocent, and youthful - few people are likely to know it and it doesn’t really fit the register the Japanese word uses. As such I’ve tried to reword it, though honestly I’m not really satisfied. I’m also not entirely sure if I’m missing a nuance of まだ (yet in the literalish translation) I should be getting; it’s probably just consonant with あどけない as “still looking young”, but it could also be referring to her state of unconsciousness causing it or something. The next line that I’m not showing talks about her looking young for her age though, so we can at least use that. The other thing of structural interest is that we’ve moved the “girl” piece of information to the second line, as mentioned.

…Man this took a while and I only did three lines. I think I’m just going to post. Like, comment, watch the Shinimasu translation progress here, design a double-sided daki with both Yukas on it for me if you’re feeling generous.


As a bonus, have a few other examples of describing things after-the-fact and how I’ve currently handled them:

idkGffX.png
As you can see the pattern isn’t limited to just speech. Here I decide to go IN and use context to write a line half new.

quGwiHw.png

Another thinking version.

AKwa9PX.png

And here’s one with 返す. Also this has mixed speech and narration, which I’ve tried to work into the English as well. Though I’m going to go change this to present tense now since I picked that later, fuck.

 

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Zakamutt

I'm sure there are legitimate complaints to be had about the biman 1 translation that cummed out today, but who has time for that shit when you see THIS?

PLEASE IGNORE THE FACT THAT THIS IS A MEME PATCH WITH THE NAMES WRONG RIGHT (thanks @HMN), THE OTHER TEXT BITS WILL BE THE SAME OKAY.

 

ZDRukDG.png

YES THAT'S RIGHT, THAT IS THE MOTHERFUCKING DOUBLE HYPHEN STANDIN FOR A PROPER EM DASH. THIS IS POSSIBLY THE UGLIEST PUNCTUATION SHORTCUT IN EXISTENCE. WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND WOULD USE THIS MONSTROSITY RATHER THAN EVEN A TECHNICALLY NOT APPROVED BY LIKE ANY STYLE GUIDE SPACED DASH?

THE BIMAN 1 TL IS CONFIRMED SHIT. THANKS FOR COMING TO MY TED TALK ON LIVING IN A MOTHERFUCKING SOCIETY

BOTTOM TEXT:

 

mhMQkWW.png

UPDATE: MORE CRIMES AGAINST TYPOGRAPHY HAVE BEEN FOUND: BEHOLD THIS RIDICULOUS DOUBLE SPACING:

 

YfI0qBh.png


VIEW THIS BOORISH TWO-PERIOD ELLIPSOID:


unknown.png

Zakamutt

This article contains major spoilers for Saya no Uta, gratuitous re-interpretation of canon, and probably a lot of words. Be warned.

 

 

 

 

 

When Saya no Uta first started showing its true colors – when Urobuchi first decided to throw a spanner of Lovecraft into a work that had been entirely plausible as a sci-fi story – I was a bit disappointed. Sure, the old L-C is cool and all, but the whole going mad from the revelation kind of thing never felt right to me. And honestly, don’t you think the “true” ending is kind of unsatisfactory? The aftermath is certainly implied to be a horror by the tone of the novel, but we’re never really shown its effects in detail to let us judge by ourselves. Let me fix that, and give you one heaven of a take.

But really though, scale back the layers and think of any magic you see as merely technology you cannot comprehend. How did Ougai contact Saya? Through some kind of communication unknown to current science, accessed by the occult artifacts and knowledge he gathers. The transport of Saya to Earth? Through that same network. Her home planet’s motivation? Efficient spreading of their superior culture throughout the universe – the ends very much justifying the means for the dull, foolish population of the planet we live on.

Let us ponder the method: detecting an occult signal is a surefire sign of intelligence, which indicates habitability by an intelligent species; genetic modification of the host species ensures ability to keep unique environmental modifications (though terraforming also occurs). It is also possible that teleportation is only possible through occult conduits, and Transformer probes such as Saya can only be sent if the other side invites them.

Modification is also significantly more humane than another viable choice: eradication and founding of a new colony.  While it can be argued that some of the humans transformed by the gene-modifying spores released by Saya in the good ending would consider themselves to have “died”, and the transformation process is likely to be distressing (though likely tempered by its relative rapidity in most locales as well as communal development), I cannot agree that the elimination of 7 billion humans through some means is preferable.

As for any generations birthed after transformation, there should be no argument that them being of Sayan heritage is preferable to them being human by any sane measure. From Ougai’s notes as well as her own feats, Saya’s intelligence and ability to learn is markedly superhuman. Saya’s species is also sure to be able to create supertechnology far beyond the reach of our current civilization if they are able to precisely teleport anything.

There’s only one conclusion: Saya no Uta has only one good ending, and it’s the one where humanity is turned into tentacle monsters from beyond the void. The two others are horrible losses of potential, and we can only hope that a world-conquering probe such as Saya will be summoned to Earth once more, this time to succeed.


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Zakamutt

Are you the kind of guy that loves stews but hates having to prep all the shit going into them? If so you’re uncomfortably close to being me holy shit stop. Anyway if you try to google up recipes for a pork stew using wine you inevitably get something that could be much simpler. Here’s my attempt at such a thing; I’ve cooked this twice and IMO it’s excellent.

INGREDIENTS (serves 2 if you’re me and my dad)

  • ~500g pork meat cut into medium pieces
  • 1 bouillon cube
  • ~200ml red wine
  • ~100ml water
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • chili flakes to taste

LITERALLY THREE PLUS ONE FUCKING STEPS BECAUSE I PUT THE PREPARATION STEPS IN THE INGREDIENTS PART

1. Brown the meat in your fat of choice on high heat in a saute pan. Salt and pepper those shits for good measure, though honestly idk if it matters so I cba to put them in the list.
2. Turn down to low heat and add wine, water, onion, garlic, chili flakes, and crumble in the bouillon cube. I usually mix it all together but who knows if this is even needed? Not le watakushi.
3. Let stew w/ lid on for as long as it takes for the meat to be nice and tender.
4. Serve with magically appearing rice I didn’t tell you about.

QUESTIONS

How do I know how long the meat will take to cook?

Since this is a general recipe I can’t tell you, but pork chops took ~1h 15m and store-tenderized pork chop meat took like an hour. Tougher cuts made for stewing might take as much as 2 hours 45 minutes or more. I also recommend the “google it” and “ask your mum” options if available. On your first time using a new kind of meat, I recommend sampling the meat at likely points. This will fuck with your rice timing which sucks, but so does life so nothing new there really.

How do I make this efficiently timewise?

The main timewaster is the slow boiling process, so the goal should be to get that started as soon as possible.

Start by cutting the meat into pieces unless it is already. After that use any downtime, for example when the fat’s warming in the pan or when you’ve just put the meat in and are letting it rest for some surface, to chop the onion / garlic. It’s not particularly important to add the garlic or onion or really anything to the stew at the same time as you add the wine, just get them in once you finish processing them.

Ok but I have beef not pork

Then do the exact same things and it will probably still work lol.

Ok but I have chicken not pork

Then make this high effort recipe instead. Or just try anyway. Cooking time will be much shorter though.

Ok but I have <other kind of meat>

We live in a society, dear reader. I’m sure you can figure it out.

That’s still too many ingredients

Fair enough. I don’t think the garlic is essential and chopping it is annoying so take it out if you wish. The chili flakes are also a bit of a flourish and you might not even like them so omit them if you want.

I would not omit the onion but if you’re a hater it probably won’t kill the dish entirely to take that out too, I’m never actually going to try that myself though so good luck.

Ok but I don’t have a bouillon cube

I will assume you have liquid broth then, use that. Otherwise supply your goddamn kitchen. Since broth will increase the total amount of liquid you probably want to cut down on or use no water at all. I have not tried this at home but like it’s a stew it’ll work out.

Actually I think a few more ingredients would be ok

I would suggest looking up more traditional recipes at this point but here are some things I have not tried: mushrooms seem like they’d fit in well. Carrots are also often mentioned though idk if I like the idea as much. I can also see bell pepper but I have a bell pepper fetish. As for spices you could try grated fresh ginger (obviously ditch some or all of the chili then I’m not responsible if you kill yourself with this) or maybe szechuan pepper.

Where’s the obligatory shitty picture?

JPEG_20180913_185236


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Zakamutt

The problem

While spurred by recent events, this essay touches on something that seems to have been a pattern in site moderation for some time now.

Let me make a claim: if a rule, especially one that is vaguely worded, is not enforced, for a decent amount of people that rule does not exist. This nonexistence integrates into the mental model of the rules that forum members construct, no matter what the formal rules may say. For members using this mental model, beginning to enforce a rule that was previously unenforced is equivalent to creating a new rule. As such, the same procedures as those used to notify forum members of new rules should be applied, possibly with some adaptation on the lines of "we will now actually enforce this rule", as the rule effectively did not previously exist.

The ur-example of this is the loligeddon of yore. The takeaway from the loligeddon when it comes to this essay is this: mods repeatedly stated that no rules had actually been changed. Yet nevertheless the appearance and subsequent removal of a particularly problematic post sparked sweeping policy changes, a cleanup operation, a tl;dr post by the administrator explaining the changes, et cetera. This should make it clear that changing policy is a big deal, even if no written rules actually change.

Recent policy changes, however, have been very different from what happened during the loligeddon. Frequently the only indication that effective rules have changed has been moderator action, sometimes fairly strict. In essentially all cases this action has been explained either inadequately or, most commonly, not at all. When this occurs the target(s) of moderation will likely feel that they have been unfairly, erratically targeted by a capricious, uncommunicative bully. What do you do when you get bullied? Well, you could talk to HR, but the mod that bullied you is probably in HR anyway and you might not even know who did it. Another option is to fight back. You annoy me, I pay you back in kind - and if I can get some fun at your expense, sure, why not? You're a bully, you deserve it.[1]

I do not mean to suggest that we need to have a tl;dr writeup every time a rule is changed, but a simple statement of intent would be appreciated. I estimate that writing this should take no more than 20 minutes. As an example, here's a hypothetical notice regarding the changing of rules on gifs that took me ~10 minutes to write. Note that the policy mentioned here could be reversed or altered to be more specific if it turns out that it was unclear or did more harm than good, which is arguably more difficult to do if the rule has been made official.[2]

In the light of this, I would like to present some recommendations.

Recommendations

When moderating, consider if your action is effectively creating or modifying rules

Remember: in the minds of some of your users, unenforced rules may as well not exist. If you decide to moderate something that was previously typically not being moderated, this will cause confusion and consternation.

As such, whenever you make a decision, ask yourself: am I changing the rules? If so, you need to consider both whether your action is actually justified, and how you are going to inform the public of your policy change. You are not a cop, you are a judge in a precedent-setting court. This is especially true due to the (understandable) current policy of supporting other mods' decisions near unconditionally.

Do not make controversial decisions when following up is difficult

On some occasions moderators have moderated while on vacation, using their phone, with bad connections et cetera. I strongly recommend against making anything close to a controversial decision in these conditions. You will end up both ruining your vacation and doing a bad job.

Talk first, shoot later

If you are performing a moderator action which reasonably should include notifying the target of the action, write up the informative PM or otherwise establish communication before enforcement. You could also consider writing up the notification of intent to change / differently enforce / clarify rules before moderating. Most of the time nobody is harmed much by leaving something up until you can handle it properly. For things that require more urgent management such as a fast-evolving derailment, consider either using a PM template for 1-2 people or making a post stating that you have removed derailing posts in the thread you moderated.

Make people feel heard

One key theme of this essay is the importance of communication. This extends beyond just notifying people of changes to the rules. I am under no illusions that your actions will go uncontested or that people won't meme and fling shit at you even if you try your best to communicate as advised in this essay. In part this is due to the frustration some people, and certainly I myself, consider you responsible for creating due to your actions up to this point. However, when hostility meets well-practiced civility its fires often run out of fuel. If you constructively engage with those who would oppose you, you can both soothe their frustration and create better, more precise final rules.

Obviously there has to be a limit and ultimately you set the rules to follow. But explaining, refining, and justifying your position elevates it from that of a dim-witted bully with little justification for their actions to someone who has a well-grounded but different opinion of what the rules should be. The first one deserves punishment, the second, grudging respect.

As a personal observation: in general, you should assume that much less of your decisions are obviously justified than you currently think. One man's common sense is another man's borderline acceptability is another man's utterly idiotic rule enforcement.

Moderation is a hard job

If this all seems like a lot of hard work to you, congratulations! That's what I thought too when the mod applications came along, so I didn't apply. Any moderators that cannot actually moderate disputes should either confine themselves to routine, uncontroversial moderation tasks or step down from their position. Believe me, nobody will die either way, and you'll get to spend your free time doing something that suits you better.

Notes

[1]
I personally don't consider the mods bullies when I do this kind of thing, but I do consider them deserving of public ridicule. The intention is both to correct behaviour and to extract some entertainment out of people that deserve to be made fun of.
And yeah, I have no respect for authority. None. I will judge you by your actions alone.

[2]
This is an assumption based on my conception of normie considerations like pride, sticking with your decision, whatever.
Obviously if a rule does more harm than good it should be removed whether or not it was enforced temporarily, but it is probably easier to do so politically if it was in fact considered temporary.
Look, I'm trying desperately not to kill all normies every day here. Give me a break.

Zakamutt

Introduction

This article's probably going to look like shit on this forum no matter what I do to it. Try my offsite blog for a better visual experience.

Mercy sees things. It’s too bad that what she sees are warped distortions, filthy beetles, tentacles, horrifying flesh-beasts and all that, but at least it isn’t permanently on so she’s not quite Fuminori yet. Too bad it’s getting worse, though.

denpa4-soundless.png

Mercy lives in a small, secluded village; the village is strongly religious, ruled by the local church, and all the kids around see her as a convenient punching bag. But hey, it’s probably her fault anyway, she was cursed by sinning at the tender age of ten. She was seeing nice things before that.

titledrop-soundless.png

Mercy is the protagonist of Soundless -a modern Salem in remote area-, which is a bit too weeb of a title to not have me wrinkle my nose, but hey apparently they’re trying to pay homage to the old denpa game aesthetic, down to the 640×480 resolution (handily you can play at 2x window size…).

happytimes-soundless.png

Soundless is about knowing that you are never safe, you could be hit any time, you could start seeing horrors any minute, and you will be punished for your own misfortune. Soundless is about freaking out and watching distorted background upon distorted background parade in front of your eyes, the attention to direction making the NVL format much less stuffy than you might expect.

alittlenuisance-soundless.png

Soundless is about surviving when almost everyone you know is trying to destroy you, whether slow or quick. Soundless is about being trapped by guilt. Soundless is about being exploited. Soundless is, perhaps, about breaking free from your tormentors – but it is not afraid to humanize them. Sometimes, you just have to let go anyway.

2xwindowsize-soundless.png

Maybe a 1.5x setting would’ve been good for those funky 1366×768 screens?

Judgement

Soundless is written… acceptably well on the prose front, though it gets awkward more often than I’d like. There are a few standout moments, mostly during freakouts, but mostly it’s just… there. There’s also some annoying confusion in the tenses that 7 beta readers couldn’t catch, which I guess proves that you need not just QC but competent QC (though they did catch a lot of typos according to the dev). Overall I would recommend an editing pass by someone competent, but I think that stands for like every EVN I’ve read bar Lynne so whatever.

fausttheangryatheist-soundless.png

I guess this is okay, though.

The music and ambient sound generally work well at conveying the atmosphere, though sometimes it suffers from short loops in ambient sfx leading to stops and starts in the track (a pet peeve). Sometimes the volume of the ambient sfx seems off, but I think that might actually be intentional. This is a denpa game, after all – you expect it to screw with you. A major bonus for adding sound effects to some of the distorted speech, though the VN is generally unvoiced.

wordshurtwow-soundless.png

brb kms

If there’s anything to criticize, it’s the last part of the novel where things go seriously south. You could argue that the change in pace is too much of a break, but for me the themes remain consistent and carry it through to a natural conclusion.

doievenhaveapersonality-soundless.png

Soundless sets you on a bloody path to madness, gore, and suffering, horrors, despair, a crescendo – and then, the point. It ruined my sleeping schedule yet again. It was kind of fucked already. I guess I don’t really mind.

allmyfaulttho-soundless.png

Soundless is one hell of a ride and I recommend it to anyone into the horror/madness aesthetic that can take the content portrayed – none of which is sexual, but expect violence.

Download: https://milkplus.itch.io/soundless

 

 

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Zakamutt

Despite there being a few good editing blogs on Fuwanovel, there doesn’t seem to be much in the way of translation blogs. I think part of the reason for this is that editors in the fan translation scene are often doing things the translator could very well be doing themselves, often to the detriment of the final product. Look at, say, the “big back” entry Fred wrote. Now tell me why this issue couldn’t be avoided back at the translation stage.

There are two reasons why you would do this: one, you don’t know Japanese well enough to understand what is actually meant, so you put down whatever it says literally. In this case, the sane way to handle the issue is to ask someone who knows Japanese better than you for advice. Two, you’re just lazy. Who actually thinks “the date changed” sounds right in English? An edge case of this is prioritizing speed; Ixrec and MDZ* both prioritized speed and neither had very good results to show for it, but they did complete things. Personally I still think this is ultimately lazy; it is significantly more simple to translate literally than to try to actually write well. In this case, ask yourself if you really want to produce a shitty translation.

What I’m trying to get at is this: if you actually want to produce something good, you can’t just leave writing the thing up to the editor. Editors are not miracle workers; they have to deal with what they’re given. Furthermore, many editors working on fan translations, and well, translations period, are not very good at the job. Any time you leave something bad in, there is always the possibility of it sticking around in the final product. I’m not saying you have to be perfect. I’m saying this: for the love of visual novels, try.

If you ask me, before you hand your script to the editor, you should have already done an editing pass on it. Or two. The lines should connect with each other rather than float like islands in a sea of prose, there should be at least an attempt at character voice, and all ugly stock translations should be kawari-fucking-mashita’d, much like the 日付 at midnight, with extreme prejudice.

Sometimes you’re still going to come up short. Sometimes it just won’t sound right whatever you try. That’s when you should pray that your editor knows better than you  leave a note at the line explaining the problem, move on, and hope to hell that your editor is actually good enough to work it out. That’s what the editor is for. The editor should not be translating from weeb to English. The editor should not be doing your job.

*Its not just the fan translation scene that does this, by the way  there are companies, like Aksys, which demand its translators write a colorless literal translation to be punched up by superstar editors later. Unsurprisingly, they’ve put out some real stinkers; I have a lot of respect for Ben Bateman’s work on 999 for this reason.


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Zakamutt

Dawn.

d

The view outside has no business calling itself a dawn. Sure, morning has just broken – but dawn has a warmth to it, a promise of brighter times, of new beginnings, of respite from the unfeeling night. The gloomy Swedish winter dawn outside brings me only a feeling of cold distance, steely gray sky falling softly onto the white fields below. Snow-laden pines clamber laboriously through the fog, watching the dawn with little more enthusiasm than I myself can muster.

It’s mornings like these that make me want to end it.

Not seriously. Not bad enough to be something I need to worry about. God, I don’t even check the “I don’t want to live but I also don’t want to die” box any more. I am absurd tiers of not actually depressed. But yeah, fuck this so-called “dawn”. Fuck this dawn for being so empty. Fuck this dawn for being so cold. And fuck me for writing about it; it’s only going to make things worse.


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Zakamutt

Programming would be much more convenient if I could get a linux distribution to work. Unfortunately, what I managed to do instead was render my system unbootable, possibly even without it being my fault. This is my story.

Once upon a time, a young Zaka installed Ubuntu on his old laptop using wubi, an installer that actually runs under Windows! It worked without any major hitches and the Zaka was pleased.

Fast forward six or so years to the ugly future that is 2017, and things were very different. Wubi didn’t even work since he was using UEFI, and the unofficial fork that did work looked sketchy, so he tried to install it using a USB stick (okay, an SD card with an adapter to USB. It should work right, they’re both flash memory man… dad has a zillion sd cards and like zero pen drives).

The process was vaguely annoying but not too bad; download ISO, format the drive with rufus, try to install, get mysterious freezing crash! Okay, fuck that let’s try the acpi=off option for grub. Wew, setup actually starts. It’s sort of a pity how I couldn’t see any partitions and clicking any of the options on that screen caused a crash! Whew.

Okay fuck that, time to try this unofficial Wubi fork that supports UEFI and has unclear instructions clearly written by a very enthusiastic ESL. It seems to work, but I don’t use the MOK Manager the first time the option is given and then I never can for the rest of the time and eventually the boot seems to just skip over the grub thing and honestly fuck this shit.

Never say never! I download a Debian net install iso and do the now familiar bootable usb steps using rufus. It’s too bad my wireless firmware isn’t supported, because debian meow meow open source woof woof. Okay, I download the “with non-free firmware” iso instead, try again… it still doesn’t have the firmware I need, but I can do a minimal install at least. Wow. Ok so I actually have a working grub -> windows bootloader flow dual boot now, lemme try to manually install the firmware… oh yeah and I have to set it to not boot silently for some reason in grub to even get it to start, because for some reason not showing acpi errors (here we cum again!) makes the thing not boot. Wew. I put the firmware in /lib/firmware, it’s still not found during boot, the boot hangs later on, I wait, sigh, and hold the power button for 5 seconds to force shutdown for the umpteenth time that day, start it all up again, and…

Current mood pic.twitter.com/ZQpLezAkSS

— 變態魔灋猫ザカちゃん (@zakamutt) August 29, 2017

I am currently using my bad old year 2010 faptop, getting a win10 install media thingy onto my totally-a-usb memory which is by now a micro sd in an sd card adapter in a usb adapter setup. It’s taking beyond forever. It may or may not let me reinstate the boot record. In either case, I should be able to preserve all important data SOMEHOW, though using a live usb for linux for recovery which would be my usual plan is kind of dicey when linux hates you.

All in all… this may or may not be entirely my fault, but my current message to whatever dev caused this is quite simply:

givingthefinger.jpg?w=625

Thanks, Twelvestepsbeyondrecognition, for taking a pic of this so I don’t have to.


It is now the Future, and I am slighly less peeved. The Windows Media Creation tool is a piece of shit-stained vomit; it downloads a ~3gb iso in like four hours where I could get it in one through http or bittorrent. It also crashed with an unhelpful error after working for like five hours when I tried to use it directly with a USB stick, so I instead made it download the ISO (again, rip the hours of progress lost), formatted the usb stick with rufus, and used that instead.

I tried to recover the bootloader in some way using the windows installation media, failed, used the command prompt to backup some files, and reinstalled windows. I suppose if nothing else, I don’t have any hp bloatware on this thing any more! …and it’s working fine so far, with no data loss. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some studying to do to catch up for the time I lost… that I totally wouldn’t have used chatting instead. Adios!


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Zakamutt

In honor of having finished reading Stargazer in Fapanese today, I figure I’d give you an idea of how I can simultaneously have read quite a bit of vn writing in Japanese yet also only have completed two short yuri doujins (my first was 明日終わる世界、その前夜). A lot of things here were sorta read in parallel with other things, which might not have helped (´・ω・`).

I started out with Amairo Islenauts; I got quite far into Masaki’s route, then stalled that ’cause I kinda didn’t want to read the drama or something. Much later I decided to go back and read a bit of Yune’s route… and that’s where we’re at now. Stalled.

I started reading Air in Fapanese as none of the two translations available impressed me; I knew Winter Confetti’s had taken flak for inaccuracy, and the start of Gao Gao’s patch felt worse than Winter Confetti’s on the editing and flow front, not to mention I was told it would be technically inferior to the Winter Confetti patch as the MC would be unvoiced for certain sections. I kinda got discouraged by the choice maze though and eventually stalled it because frankly it wasn’t that interesting.

Angel Beats -1st beat-… Honestly if it wasn’t for a bug and/or sneaky copy protection measure I might have read more of this;  I spent quite a long time with it and eventually got to like the second or third map location select, which didn’t work for some reason. Also you can’t transfer saves to other computers apparently, fucking rip. I might pick this up again, maybe even reading it together with the forthcoming English translation so I can shit on VA fucking it up like we all expect they will (´・ω・`).

Watashi no Real wa Juujitsu Shisugiteiru, or watajuu for short, was a really entertaining otomege that I’d recommend to everyone. Ultimately though after reading two routes I stopped midway through the otouto route because… well I didn’t like it as much, choices in-route confused and enraged me for some reason, and given how long the knife of unforgettable betrayal had been twisted at that point, I started reading…

Subahibi. I liked it a lot when it was a yuri harem, then I kinda liked it when it was denpa but it got harder to read and I stalled it about when a certain train arrived.

Then Kiririri eventually wore down my defenses, and I picked up Hatsuyuki Sakura. One of the better decisions of my life, as it’s consistently entertaining and seems well written both prosewise and plotwise. Finished the rather long “prologue” section, read a little bit of the “introduction”, stalled. Maybe I’ll pick it up again now though after finishing 11eyes and Stargazer.

I also read a bit of Zannen na Ane to no Love Comedy somewhere in there, but I think I’ll want to be able to power through silly SoL faster to not die reading it. Apart from that, I have like 20 minutes of …in white left or something, but I started reading that looking for short doujin vns to tl, so idk man ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.


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Zakamutt

I have a lot of trouble getting started on things. One area in particular that has been consistently difficult for me is going places – work, school, the store to buy muh colas before they close for the night, that sort of thing. I have recently discovered and begun formalizing a technique which seems to help with it. However, it is creepy, because it involves partially dissociating your mind from what your body is doing. Today I fashioned for it a shitty chuuni chant: there is strength in emptiness: Automaton!

To be honest, I’m half hoping the chant doesn’t work as a switch-flipper, considering how terrible it is. My apologies, O chuuni gods.

It begun one day when I was lying around, trapped in a familiar sensation where I seemed unable to will myself to any action, enmeshed in repetitive and irrelevant thought and generally getting nowhere important. I felt out of touch with the world, like there were no thread connecting me to this plane – indeed, was the world even real?

A seductive call beckoned. Perhaps I should try something I had done piecewise before, but never so deliberately, so completely – could I give my estranged body over to an imagined automaton, let the automaton collect the knick-knacks and tie the shoelaces and lock the doors and ride the elevators, and take back control once I needed to once again be human?

The attempt was a resounding, if alarming, success. My body proceeded to smoothly go to work, while I, dissociated, observed that I probably tie my shoelaces faster and more efficiently when I’m doing it on autopilot. In the end I spontaneously reintegrated over time without having to force it, which was a relief – one time I was at the store and borely (and likely boneheadedly) started practicing the mindfulness concept of framing your thoughts as things you are having rather than facts that are; while it didn’t really elucidate much, I did find myself unable to easily exit the frame, which was honestly a bit unchill.

I have used the automaton takeover concept like, two times after that, and it really does seem to work. It’s not just mindlessly doing things on autopilot either – the disconnect ensures that you have actual thinking time while carrying out business, and is the prime difference between this and pure distracted flow.

To use this technique you should probably be somewhat comfortable with feelings of derealization. The good news is that these correlate with depression, and I swear half of you fuckers want to kill yourselves, so it’s vaguely plausible that someone else might have had a similar experience. I do wonder if I have accidentally stumbled upon and formalized a Normie Technique(tm) that nobody told me about, but the fact that I’m worried that someone with psych issues will try it and end up being unable to return to united reality or fucked up in general does bolster me somewhat. Uhh, be careful trying this at home, I guess.

My personal motivation was that I was pretty derealized already, so making things more formal wasn’t really going to be that much of a problem. If you find yourself able to convincingly make that argument, this method may be worth trying.


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Zakamutt

I got my first welfare check in summer last year, just before I went on vacation with my parents.

There are some demands placed on those applying for welfare; one is that one must not unduly refuse suggested interventions. No interventions were suggested for about six months, but hey, cash money. Then I was summoned to a meeting, where I was given a plethora of options, except eight tenths of them were second hand shops and cafes and fuck anything where I have to do customer service. Also, everything had long waiting times anyway.

There were only really two options left: go back to the environment & ancient remains conservation agency where I worked in late 2013 / early 2014, or this other place that did carpentry – more specifically, in-shop manufacture of wooden items. My counselor was not particularly subtle in recommending the woodworking shop, claiming it had both rave reviews and, amazingly, the ability to accept new recruits right this moment.

I left the meeting put in queue for a potential spot at the agency and awaiting a text regarding an interview for the whole wood thing. “To start with you’ll build a box, and if that works out, we’ll put you straight into production.” Well, I’m not a huge fan of handicrafts, but it’s not like I hate it either; guess I’ll check it out and decide afterward.

About two weeks later I was given a tour of the premises, then an interview by the supervisor. I noted the structured approach to the interview; especially a technique used where, before asking about who I was as a person and where my problems lay, the manager volunteered some details about his personal life first – his kids, not enough time, how his work there gave him meaning, that sort of thing. It was pretty transparent; I figured it was likely an adaptation to help people with certain neurodivergences, but also wondered if it was part of the broader style of the therapeutic techniques used.

Earlier during the tour I was told about the “sharing” ritual, where at the start of your shift you sat with the other participants and could optionally share how you were currently feeling, if there were any special affordances you’d need or appointments to keep that day, and what you were working on briefly. This ritual was shielded from latecomers, which served to protect it, but also as a soft punishment for arriving late. I’m not sure how explicit he made any of this; I could feel myself starting to assign greater value to coming in time, realized I had been hacked, and figured that this was fine as the hack was desirable anyway. The boss seemed pleased, but in what might have been another affordance, he wanted me to go back home and think about it before taking any decision.

Two days after my social security contact had said she’d called me she actually did, and I accepted. I was then scheduled for a quick meeting where we would actually negotiate working times and other details. Some time later, I had agreed to work there from Monday to Wednesday, 12:00 to 15:00, with the assumption that I would eventually take on more hours. I was to start on a Tuesday, February the 21st. I was told by phone that day that, umm, I’m kind of sick so can we make it just tomorrow? Okay, fine, my sleep was all kinds of shit anyway that time rip me.

I woke up at like 2am on the 22nd. I had crisps for breakfast. Brewed tea, which is a pretty potent mindhack when you’re not acclimated to it. Biked through miserable snowfall on my mum’s three-speed bike, on which only the first two gears actually work. The front tire was inadequately pumped. It was not a good experience. I arrived twenty minutes early.


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Zakamutt

I mean, it’s not like I have better content to give ya. Like the last post, this is unedited from what I wrote down on the trot, with corrections at the bottom. You have been warned.

2017年1月13日
私には3の合い約束[1]があります。19日は脳の事。24日は銀行、25日はまた脳に対する。そして時が分からないけど、仕事のはも待ちます。

昨日は役に立てかもブログポーストを読んだ。「するべきは悪い」ってのは(ほんやく羽えぇ…[2])、「するべき」の思いは苦しいけど大体に行動を変わらない。「するべき」の思いが私によくあるから、気に入った。

1月15日
最近アイディーアがあった。大体はオリエンテーションで、今の合い約束と計画等を紙に書い[3]、未来と夢に考える時間だ。ふつうに、パソコンで遊びや買い物しとかに込み、大事と難しい事は頭に入いていない[4]。

昔はそんな事は何度も頭に回りながら良くないに終わりから、多分こんなけっかだ。でもざるを得ない事は世界に沢山あるから、少しでも変化がいいと思います。


I write 合い約束, but what I’m looking for is 会う約束. Repeated later on, too. ファック!

2
Meant to be 弱えぇ, but apparently I was 羽い(ふり:ハイ) or something and wrote this instead

3
pls zaka, that should be 書き. YOU KNEW THIS.

4
残念ながら、入るは一段じゃねぇ(´・ω・`)
正解は「入っていない」。


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Zakamutt

Well, long time no content here, eh. So, uhh, I started writing a diary when I poop. But it’s in bad Fapanese. I have some faint hope that seeing my amusing stumbles might inspire you to practice writing in Japanese. Yes, you over there in my target audience of maybe one person. The actual content of this entry is unlikely to inspire anyone, so it’s all the better that nobody will understand it anyway.

For authenticity (and hopefully showing that it’s ok to mess up a bit or something) I have preserved all the grammatical and kanji errors I made, noting what I spotted reading through it again below.

11月24日

28日が近づつつ[1]、メールをまた書かなかった。ウェルフェーアのことも準備はなかった。正直に・・・この一月[2]は、リアルに対してゴミにしただけ。バーチュアルはもっと良かったけど、この生活はどうだろう?変化は難しいのはよく分かるでも、このゆっくり過ぎ流れは誰にも良くない。

まあ、ウェルフェア[3]限り[4]は今日するつもりにして・・・かもしれない。
・・・その適当すぎな感請[5]がきらい。でもそれ以上は出来ない。
いやでも、悪いでも、恥ずかしいでも、それは私の本当の気持ち。
それ以上の方には、負けの機会[6]っが沢山ある。
。。。また明日、うんこするなら。ってその終え方下手すぎ!ごめんなさい、みんな。

Fuckups

[1] I’m not even sure if the つつ grammar is any good here, but I made a more fundamental error. つつ needs to be attached to the actual stem of the verb in question (here 近づく), rather than what you get when I use ichidan verb rules on godan verbs. tl;dr this should be 近づきつつ.

[2] While 一月 apparently can mean “one month”, it also means “January”. What I meant to write was 一ヶ月.

[3] Pls decide if you want a chouon or not in the word you katakana’d because you don’t know the fapanese one, zaka.

[4] I wrote this kanji wrong, using 良 as the right side.

[5]感請 should be 感情 here.

[6] I wrote 機 without the tree on the left and kinda wrong in general. I have recreated my failure in paint for you to enjoy.

準備のことはまだ、でも今すぐやるつもりです。メーレは・・・まぁ。


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Zakamutt

Vacation

I’ll be gone on a trip to germany -> mostly france -> germany the entire month of august.

I’ll try not to die and may or may not ever get nets

Farewell cruel world

 

If you want to contact me, hit me up on Twitter because that’s what I’ll be looking at on muh smartphone and ill only be using muh smartphone for any random wifi hotspot while we travel.


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Zakamutt

Oh shit, I’m cooking today and it’s like one hour til I have to start. I really should have remembered to take something out of the freezer to thaw… I really don’t want to thaw something in the microwave, so my options are basically gradually peeling off a block of ground meat in the pan (huge pain), krögarpytt (brand of frozen mix of potato, onion and various meats, plus lots of things I’d have to look at the ingredients list for), or… oh yes, my saviour – that lovely meaty cylindrical thing I first had back in Eastern Europe.

Regrettably, I am not speaking of dicks.

The frozen ćevapčići lidl sells in 1kg bags is both delicious and affordable, but we’ve had it a few too many times recently. I should probably cook something else… maybe I’ll change the condiments from rice to pasta or fries… fuck fries turning them is a huge pain… meh fuck pasta too… okay it’s rice again… wait, I could make a sauce! …but what exactly? It’s not like I have the time to make tomato sauce from scratch, and frankly it’s not like it’s that great anyway (I’ve done it according to a legit recipe once!).

Well, if you don’t like a recipe you can always change it! I quickly search the fridge and find a fairly small red onion, garlic (not an option, was rotting), and okay that was all I was looking for in the fridge to begin with. Next I reach for the box of strained tomatoes I know is in the larder next to the fridge. Surprisingly it has not been abducted by aliens (maybe the red on the packaging scared them off), allowing me to wrest it from the depths of the… just kidding, it was at chest height on the second shelf.

I get a bouillon cube, a knife, put some rapeseed oil in a saucepan, and set to business; the business is making the bouillon cube submit to my knife (not the easiest), and cutting the onions.

I managed to not cry.

The preparation of the ćevapčići and rice was easy (and irrelevant). Anyway, the sauce. I heat the oil at medium-high for a bit, pop in a piece of onion to see if it’s ready, and the bubbling around it assures me that this is the case. I put in the rest of the onion and stir it around a bit, lower the heat, and pour in some of the strained tomato and the semi-powdered bouillon cube (it did not submit fully, but I was able to impose strict limits on its military and generally destroy its infrastructure), let it boil, add salt (used a lot, which was a bad idea – try not to do that, the bouillon cube prolly has it already), white pepper, and finally the x-factor ingredient I just had to put in: chili flakes. A bit too many, I reflected after I had thrown in a bunch. After letting it boil slightly and stirring it around a bit, I decided it was done, used a spoon to try it, and was promptly greeted with something strong and edible, probably in that order.

It was actually not too bad, and if nothing else it proves that whipping something up on your own isn’t necessarily too bad. At least if you’re a Zaka. I may or may not make it ever again, but I’ll probably take it a bit easier with the chili flakes and use less salt.

Thus concludes this episode of Cooking With Zaka.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bouillon cube
  • 1 red onion
  • strained tomatoes
  • white pepper
  • salt (maybe)
  • chili flakes / seeds / whatever
  • rapeseed oil (olive oil might be better)

Serve with other stuff, if you actually think it’s worth trying. There are probably better recipes.


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Zakamutt

As you may or may not be aware, for a while now I have been waiting on a diagnosis, or lack of one, after a series of psychiatric evaluations. I started it due to suspicions of me having ADHD predominantly inattentive (also known as ADD). What transpired today was thus somewhat of a surprise: I did indeed receive a diagnosis – of Asperger Syndrome.

It’s not all that easy to accept because, well, I never felt all that aspbergy. I’m not the best guy ever when it comes to socializing, but I’m not really super bad at it either and I don’t like, interpret idioms literally or totally make an arse of myself all that much. Lots of things /do/ fit, however, and I think the doctors are right. Especially the typical life story outlined, with a failure in uni studies, an outgoing early life but a descent into passivity when grown up… it all fits me to a T[1].

The one thing I’m thankful for is that I performed like a normal person in the video test where I was supposed to interpret people’s motivations and feelings based on a video I was shown. Apparently this is because I use my highly developed other skills to interpret information in a logical manner, allowing me to mimic the intuitive understanding exhibited by your average joe. Also a plus: my iq-penis is apparently in the top 2% of the population, to the point where if I tried to join MENSA I might be able to pass the test. Not that I see much point in doing that. A part of me really wants to be top 1% because that’s just a much prettier number somehow, but, uhh, I guess I’ll have to deal.

Unfortunately my short-term memory and “speed”, whatever that means exactly, are significantly less above baseline than my other skills are. I can definitely agree with this assessment, and hopefully I’ll be able to learn how to compensate for this efficiently somehow.

So where does this leave me? Well, apparently I have the right to… stuff that places can provide. And things. I feel pretty weird about like, taking courses in how to handle typical aspie problems – I feel like some people I see there might be much more hindered socially than me and thus a real bother to deal with. Is this unfair? Maybe. But given that this is something I’ll be doing voluntarily, it’s something I’ll have to think over. In any case, I’m meeting the people currently coordinating my efforts to get back into some form of occupation on the 28th, so I think I’ll take it from there. I actually have something I need to think about more before that visit, and hopefully I really will get it done… if only to not feel bad. That’s a pretty bad reason, but, uhh, results are all that matter right?

…I should really try to mentally reframe it as something to benefit myself when I can.

In conclusion, how I feel like right now is kind of like when I got diabetes – I’m really annoyed with this shit and will try my best to kick its ass. As for you all – all I can really say is, I still (probably) care about you even if I might occasionally seem not to. Feel free to remind me to think about your feelings on occasion, because I don’t necessarily do it automatically😛.

The title is a lovely piece of bilingual wordplay. It may or may not make you groan if you figure it out. If you want a hint… the English word you seek is not politically correct.

[1] The Grammarist claims that “to a tee” is incorrect, but it’s in the bloody Cambridge English dictionary and all with no note of it being a misspelling or anything. I still like the form I use here the most, but while it grates on me to see the more teematic version, I can’t really correct it in good conscience. Yet another little annoyance that I will have to either get used to or suffer through to the end of my days, sigh.


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Zakamutt

I’ve always loved good food. It’s not too rare for the highlight of the day, in retrospect, to be dinner. Home cooking, whilst quite a bother, is something I’ve gotten more and more used to recently. Unfortunately, the more good food I cook, the more mum will want to make me cook instead of her, and the more of my time will be spent away from the keyboard. On the other hand, my chicken stew is kind of good, and I’m getting better at preparing it all, so I guess it all balances out.

Oh yeah, the stew. I did title the post after it and shit.

I based this recipe vaguely off of this one (I hope you can read Swedish lel), which actually looked a bit different back when I checked it. Among other things, it called for red wine, not white. I wasn’t too keen on the walnuts and prunes, but I figured a few substitutions were reasonable. I mean, it’s a stew. Science, it ain’t.

Unfortunately, you may have trouble getting the funnel chanterelle this recipe uses (we pick it ourselves at a certain place in the woods, then dry it.) Much like Dr. Boom in most Hearthstone decks, there’s probably no real replacement. You basically want something with a bit of spiciness and a bit of general mushroominess. Good luck.

INGREDIENTS

  1. ~500g chicken filet of some sort (~1.1 pounds)
  2. 1 red bell pepper, medium to large (this is known as red paprika in Sweden, while paprika powder refers to the powdered spice. Very confusing.)
  3. 1 yellow onion
  4. ~0.7dl of red wine (1/3 cup)
  5. 1 bouillon cube
  6. 1 tbsp wheat flour (15ml, this is apparently same as the Amurrican tablespoon)
  7. 2.5dl of cream (1 cup)
  8. Thyme
  9. (Dried) funnel chanterelles, reconstitute if dried
  10. 2 carrots, medium size
  11. Salt, white pepper (Do I even need to add this?)

PREPARATION

  1. Creamy Mix: In a convenient vessel, mix za cream with some thyme (don’t be shy), the red wine, and za flour, then crumble the bouillon cube into it. Take a moment to lament your now-crumbly hands. Lightly whisk it all together.
  2. Cut za bell pepper into ~2cm (0.8 in.) wide, ~5cm (2 in.) long strips. Stripping own body optional but recommended (to be a naked chef).
  3. Peel, then cut za carrot into thin rods about 5cm (2 in.) in length. Resist urge to joke about eating rods.
  4. Chop za onion. Relish opportunity to shed manly tears by thinking about CLANNAD / listening to Close Your Eyes.
  5. Cut the chicken meat into medium-sized pieces. If there’s a goddamn tendon in each piece like in what we use, do consider cutting that out too.
  6. Be really annoyed that you have to wash your hands and everything in general like it has ebola or something because fuck chicken.
  7. Time to start actually cooking. If you have a pan with a lid which you can both fry and stew in (Wikipedia makes me think this is a saute pan, but fuck terminology), use that. Otherwise you might have to put everything in a pot for the actual stewing stage (when you add the creamy mixture), which would be a huge bother.
  8. High heat: Lightly brown the chicken in some kind of cooking fat. Salt and pepper ’em.
  9. Medium-high heat: Sear the bell pepper, then the onion. If using a saute pan, be lazy and shove the already seared stuff to the side while searing the next item, it won’t matter really.
  10. Medium-low heat: stir the Creamy Mixture into the pan, put the lid on. Let boil softly for 5 minutes. Don’t worry, it isn’t actually that reminiscent of semen.
  11. Mix the carrots and funnel chanterelles into the pan and let boil for another 5 minutes. We call them trattkantareller in Swedish.
  12. Serve with basmati (master race) rice, which has magically appeared (I hope you actually read through the recipe once before starting on this shit, otherwise, rip in lazy recipe tradition. Don’t forget to salt the water.)
  13. Holy fuck it’s done.

Obligatory tweet of shittily lit low-res picture of result:

Occasionally, the Zaka cooks pic.twitter.com/ZB1pjXg5Xz

— 變態魔灋猫ザカちゃん (@zakamutt) January 3, 2016

Hopefully you will enjoy this as much as I do, assuming you actually cook stuff random amateurs post on the interwebs.


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Zakamutt

I’ve always loved good food. It’s not too rare for the highlight of the day, in retrospect, to be dinner. Home cooking, whilst quite a bother, is something I’ve gotten more and more used to recently. Unfortunately, the more good food I cook, the more mum will want to make me cook instead of her, and the more of my time will be spent away from the keyboard. On the other hand, my chicken stew is kind of good, and I’m getting better at preparing it all, so I guess it all balances out.

Oh yeah, the stew. I did title the post after it and shit.

I based this recipe vaguely off of this one (I hope you can read Swedish lel), which actually looked a bit different back when I checked it. Among other things, it called for red wine, not white. I wasn’t too keen on the walnuts and prunes, but I figured a few substitutions were reasonable. I mean, it’s a stew. Science, it ain’t.

Unfortunately, you may have trouble getting the funnel chanterelle this recipe uses (we pick it ourselves at a certain place in the woods, then dry it.) Much like Dr. Boom in most Hearthstone decks, there’s probably no real replacement. You basically want something with a bit of spiciness and a bit of general mushroominess. Good luck.

INGREDIENTS

  1. ~500g chicken filet of some sort (~1.1 pounds)
  2. 1 red bell pepper, medium to large (this is known as red paprika in Sweden, while paprika powder refers to the powdered spice. Very confusing.)
  3. 1 yellow onion
  4. ~0.7dl of red wine (1/3 cup)
  5. 1 bouillon cube
  6. 1 tbsp wheat flour (15ml, this is apparently same as the Amurrican tablespoon)
  7. 2.5dl of cream (1 cup)
  8. Thyme
  9. (Dried) funnel chanterelles, reconstitute if dried
  10. 2 carrots, medium size
  11. Salt, white pepper (Do I even need to add this?)

PREPARATION

  1. Creamy Mix: In a convenient vessel, mix za cream with some thyme (don’t be shy), the red wine, and za flour, then crumble the bouillon cube into it. Take a moment to lament your now-crumbly hands. Lightly whisk it all together.
  2. Cut za bell pepper into ~2cm (0.8 in.) wide, ~5cm (2 in.) long strips. Stripping own body optional but recommended (to be a naked chef).
  3. Peel, then cut za carrot into thin rods about 5cm (2 in.) in length. Resist urge to joke about eating rods.
  4. Chop za onion. Relish opportunity to shed manly tears by thinking about CLANNAD / listening to Close Your Eyes.
  5. Cut the chicken meat into medium-sized pieces. If there’s a goddamn tendon in each piece like in what we use, do consider cutting that out too.
  6. Be really annoyed that you have to wash your hands and everything in general like it has ebola or something because fuck chicken.
  7. Time to start actually cooking. If you have a pan with a lid which you can both fry and stew in (Wikipedia makes me think this is a saute pan, but fuck terminology), use that. Otherwise you might have to put everything in a pot for the actual stewing stage (when you add the creamy mixture), which would be a huge bother.
  8. High heat: Lightly brown the chicken in some kind of cooking fat. Salt and pepper ’em.
  9. Medium-high heat: Sear the bell pepper, then the onion. If using a saute pan, be lazy and shove the already seared stuff to the side while searing the next item, it won’t matter really.
  10. Medium-low heat: stir the Creamy Mixture into the pan, put the lid on. Let boil softly for 5 minutes. Don’t worry, it isn’t actually that reminiscent of semen.
  11. Mix the carrots and funnel chanterelles into the pan and let boil for another 5 minutes. We call them trattkantareller in Swedish.
  12. Serve with basmati (master race) rice, which has magically appeared (I hope you actually read through the recipe once before starting on this shit, otherwise, rip in lazy recipe tradition. Don’t forget to salt the water.)
  13. Holy fuck it’s done.

Obligatory tweet of shittily lit low-res picture of result:

Occasionally, the Zaka cooks pic.twitter.com/ZB1pjXg5Xz

— 變態魔灋猫ザカちゃん (@zakamutt) January 3, 2016

Hopefully you will enjoy this as much as I do, assuming you actually cook stuff random amateurs post on the interwebs.


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