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22 Jan 2006: Tempus Edax Rerum

I am so not in the mood for a web update. I'm not that interested in investing the time on a major web update at the best of times but there are so many more interesting things that I would like to be pursuing right now - it's a new year after all, if that means anything to you - that this monthly update feels like an annoying distraction.

Got meself a new MP3 player for Christmas and it's proving to be an excellent shield from the noise of the workplace. Developers need to concentrate, after all. I'm not sure I need to listen to everybody's speakerphone conference squalls.


Some welcome discoveries on eMusic this month include FC Kahuna "Haying", Louis Philippe "Your Life", Ladytron "Destroy Everything You Touch" and eccentric The Hold Steady "The Cattle and The Creeping Things". My Dad was cited on the Channel 4 news, but not as a criminal or anything, which was a relief, still not quite as good as when I appeared on a Channel 4 show many years ago though, heh. Was wondering how a colleague of Mark Oaten's might respond to the news presenter when she was asked the moronic question, "what might be the reason that Mark Oaten would do such a thing?" Geez, enough already, give me more on the Thames whale inquest, which was apparently the second major headline of the national news for around 24 hours - hah, and the British think they're above the Japanese fawning over pandas. I have also disabled hotlinking as various sites were draining my bandwidth by stapling my images directly into their pages, take that you bastards.

Bonus Pictures

Not so many bonuses on the Japanese web log, I haven't been very snap-happy this month.

Lain Corner

Ah, Lain, I've been wondering how I was going to write this up.

Lain montage

Most reviews will give a quick summary of Lain's opening episode, explaining that one of Lain's classmates kills herself by jumping from a building in Shibuya but then the dead classmate starts sending e-mails from the Wired (the Internet of Lain's world). This might sound like the start of intriguing story in itself, but have no fear, the focus shifts sharply away from this "distraction" onto Lain herself and her relationship with her family, her friends and the Wired.

Not your stereotypical anime, the thirteen-episode story contains barely any action sequences. It is a dark fantasy with an intellectual slant and needs your full attention if you are going to have any hope of understanding its puzzle. What is reality and what is imaginary is difficult to distinguish and, to some extent, it might not matter.

It defies explanation and simply has to be watched to understand how well it resists understanding; Aki accompanied me on this journey and was often completely lost as to the relevance or meaning of many of the scenes. That aside, this is not Evangelion without a satisfactory ending; Lain most definitely finishes, but you'll be wondering what it is you've actually been watching.

Lain is about identity, belief and the relationship between memory and reality. That's the best I can do. If you want to know more, you're going to have open Pandora's Box yourself. But don't say I didn't warn you.