Because we’re losers who need a visa to travel to Japan, I took a day off at work on Friday and we visited Toronto. Japanese Consulate is super nice! It’s located in one of those huge glass boxes Toronto is full of but at the same time it feels like a tiny part of Japan in Canada. It’s small and, somehow, cozy and virtually without any lines, plus, it’s full of kanji and posters with Japanese high school girls =) My experience with embassies and consulates are limited but American, for example, is huge, full of people and visa offices are obviously tired. We handed over a bunch of papers, gave our passports and, hopefully, will get them back soon, already with the visa.

The only place we visited on the first day was a castle, Casa Loma. I’m a terrible writer, so I’d describe it as huge and impressive. And overcrowded sometimes. A lot of room, a tunnel, old furniture, old cars — and other things any respectable castle should have.

The view from the top is crazy. And yes, we walked from and to downtown (a good training before Japan, hehe)

I know nothing about cars in general or old ones in particular. But as a good tourist I had to take a picture.

And a couple of photos of Toronto in the evening.

On the second day we somehow managed to visit two places with Japanese food. The first place was Tsujiri, they sell Japanese sweets and those sweets look amazing! The taste is more peculiar, for me it was fine but Nastya wasn’t super impressed. Had we only left Tsujiri (and of course I acted like an asshole and said “Domo arigato!” in the end, because girls working there were Japanese) we saw a maid cafe. Not sure what we thought, probably something like “We shouldn’t have any regrets” or something similarly pretentious but we ended up sitting in that cafe. Omurice, a spell to make it tastier and listening to one of the maids explaining to a kid that cats in Japan say “Nyan-nyan”. Omega cute.

Nyan-nyan =.^_^.=

My main goal for that trip, actually, was the Hockey Hall of Fame. We passed by a couple of times before and finally I did it! Here come tons of useless photos with jerseys, sticks and other hockey memorabilia. But first of all — fat Sergei with the Stanley Cup.

Kind of regret now that I didn’t ask a couple that stood in front of me in the line to take my picture because they even offered that themselves (I made their photos so they wanted to pay back).

Couldn’t resist — like this jersey!

Teemu Selanne’s jersey

A jersey belonged to Bobby Orr

Maurice Richard’s jersey

Maybe the oldest jersey I saw there (Ottawa Senators)

Jerseys from the “Original Six” time

The original Stanley Cup

An extremely boring museum for those who don’t care about hockey and rather interesting for those — who do.

Just a random picture I took at one of the streets (as a dog/cat person I couldn’t have missed it):

The final part of the trip was Central Island. Views from there maybe aren’t “$1000000” as they are often advertised but I’d say that they are great — plus, going there and back on a boat is an interesting experience as well.

Animelog: Tada Never Falls in Love

I wish I knew more synonyms to words like “generic” or “bland”. That would make describing anime as “Tada-kun wa Koi wo Shinai” (and there are a lot of them!) much easier.

Long story short, Tada never falls in love but sometimes he does. His chosen one is a princess of a European country, who incognito spends some times in Japan and of course she prefers an ordinary Japanese high-school student to her husband-to-be, cute blonde nobleman from her country. She’s a Japan geek and this is a good thing — Rainbow Shogun moments were at least fun. What else was fun? Pin-senpai’s clothing choices, Nyanko Big… and that’s it? Everything else could’ve easily been watched without looking at the screen — we’ve seen such stories million times.


I’m dumb. Have a view-projection matrix and points, which are behind the camera. Transform to clip space — and getting positive z values. Dumbly staring at this trying to figure out what’s wrong. And then realize that w values are basically view-space depth and w is negative for those points. Divide negative z by that negative w — voila, we got positive clip space z!

Every times that’s so sad when brilliant directors, top-notch animators, amazing artists and, in general, entire studios waste their talent and put their efforts into something generic and useless. I could say that about Shaft and Fate Extra, the same goes to KyAni and Violet Evergarden. This season has two such shows. Angels of Death and Sirius the Jaeger both are very solidly done and, let’s say, watchable. But at the same time watching them is very upsetting — I can’t spot thinking what could have been created had J.C Staff and PA Works respectively decided to make something more original and intriguing.

Powerwolf, The Sacrament Of Sin

Powerwolf’s a a synonym of stability. Every two or three years they release a new album that sounds pretty much like previous ones, songs are dedicated to the same topics as songs on the previous ones, etc. Surprisingly, I’m still not bored!

The only significant minus of The Sacrament of Sin is that it sounds even more pop-like than Blessed and Possessed, for instance. “Demons are a girl’s best friend” or “Stossgebet” barely can be called “metal” at all. The second part of the deluxe edition, covers on Powerwolf’s songs is also worse than we heard before (the versions of Conquistadors and The Evil That Men Do from the previous album found the spot in my playlist immediately). However, the rest of the album is good and I’m going to listen to it 10-15 times.

Animelog: Hisone To Maso-tan

I wasn’t going to watch this one. “Girls serving in the Japanese army and piloting dragons to save the world”. Staring at such a description I immediately begin imagining something either like Strike Witches or another zero-to-hero story. However, despite my prejudices, Hisone To Maso-tan turned out to be quite a comedy. A weird comedy but in a good meaning of this word. Four weird girls piloting OTF (Organic Transformed Flyer) and among them our main heroine, Hisone, who’s main problem is her incredible honesty. You know, like in that joke about the greatest weakness.

I didn’t care much about the dragons and other girls acted mainly as a background, even though every one of them got their 5 minutes in the spotlight — but Hisone ended up being a charming character. Oh, and how she licked up Maso-tan (and tried to do that with others)! Her slightly nut behaviour and, uhm, dumbness made a pretty usual story worth watching.

Yeah, unfortunately, the plot is not super unpredictable and, frankly, rather stupid. Especially disappointing are the last two episodes. But if you pretend that they don’t exist — HisoMaso is a good choice.

P.S. Visual is nice (Hen Zemi -like) and the ending in French accompanied by slightly weird (again this word!) but cute dances — deserves to be checked out.