I saw one of these people in Picaddily Circus in London. Didn't hug him...
too strange when your sensei is around ;)
By the way, it was great to see him after so long... Kind of missed Japan...
Oh well... maybe I'll go there soon...
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Friday, December 01, 2006
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Sunday, October 29, 2006
Is having too many options a good thing?
I have recently tried to figure out what I want to do with my life after the PhD. First comes the big question: Go back to Greece or stay to the UK or even go to Japan?
It is difficult, really. Of course, I'm not the one facing the same problem. Almost everyone I know is kind of thinking in a similar manner. Then, the second option pops up. Stay in academia? Work in an engineering firm? Work in a financial firm?
The decision of the first question negates some (if not most) of the options in the second one.
So, which one? I'm telling you; it's not easy to decide. All options have their own charm.
I went to a McKinsey & Company presentation the other day and I really liked it. But I'm not sure if I can do this line of work.
I shouldn't be ungrateful though. I am really lucky to have done the things I've done and there are so many people that are not given a choice at all. It kind of reminds me of a recent debate in UK politics on the subject of "too much choice"...
I don't know, honestly. And I have to decide. Soon.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 18:30
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
There are times when something comes, a film, a record, a book that just changes one's landscape. Haruki Murakami's Norwegian Wood is such a book.
It might be a love story, but an amazingly written one and so moving that I cannot really describe this bittersweet feeling right now. I can't remember the last time I finished a book at 5am in the morning. I don't read nearly as many books I would have liked to, but I am truly moved by this one. A shockingly honest look to human relationships and possibly one of the sexiest books I will ever read.
I really would like spending some time thinking about this masterpiece.
But it's late, and I have to go to sleep. And I don't want to...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 05:14
Thursday, October 05, 2006
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Στο δρόμο του γυρισμού, ανάμεσα στους μεθυσμένους του βρώμικου λεωφορείου, άκουγα την ανυπέρβλητη μελοποίηση του Σωκράτη Μάλαμα του ποιήματος του Κωνσταντίνου Καβάφη, Δεκέμβρης 1903:
"Κι αν για τον έρωτα μου δε μπορώ να πω
αν δε μιλώ για τα μαλλιά σου, για τα χείλη, για τα μάτια
όμως το πρόσωπό σου που κρατάω μες την ψυχή μου
ο ήχος της φωνής σου που κρατάω μες στο μυαλό μου
ημέρες του Σεπτέμβρη που ανατέλλουν στα όνειρά μου
Τις σκέψεις και τις πράξεις μου πλάθουν και ζωγραφίζουν
σ' όποιο θέμα κι αν περνώ, όποια ιδέα κι αν λέγω..."
Κρίμα που ο συγχρονισμός είναι τόσο κακός κάποιες φορές... Ή μήπως όχι;
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 01:57
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Monday, September 11, 2006
It's reaaaaaly difficult not to like these cigars
For pure pleasure...
Just in case you wanted to know, this guy is probably the company's owner.
(*) In Larissa.
Not that people in the UK have better taste, even when they have a lot of money :P
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 23:51
Many people have asked me why I sold my Mp3 player. And it is difficult to explain why, since it was definitely a great piece of engineering. It was small, light with a high capacity and really good looking. So, since it had all of the above, why did I change it?
Because I was sick and tired of large corporations dictating me on how I use and listen to my music. The plague called DRM is a menace and has to be stopped. Sony, Apple and Microsoft have no right to tell me how I can use something that I've paid for. When I buy a CD, I pay at least £10, or 15E or $20. And I pay ALOT of money for the service provided. Still, I want to buy the CD instead of stealing it since it's only fair and people live through my and others' purchase of this product.
BUT, when a multi-billion industry comes and treats me automatically as a thief then I get pissed off. Imposing restrictions on me will only move me to the other side of the spectrum where I won't care if a steal a CD or not. I mean, who hasn't written a cassette to a friend? Isn't this helping the spreading of the music's popularity? Why should Sony make my life difficult when I just want to listen to the things I bought? I don't see the point any more, especially from one of the most ruthless cartel in the world.
All of you, please; stop buying the iPod, stop buying Sonys, stop buying music from iTunes. Buy something that is not infested. And think about it. What will happen when the iPod is not the trendiest player out there as the signs already show? What will you do with all the music that you've bought from iTunes? Well, you'll just be another victim of customer lock-in.
Buy something like this that sounds great and gives you the freedom you need. No iTunes, no SonicStage. Just drag'n drop.
By the way, the Sony sold for a good 160 quid :P
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 23:34
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Some things in life are just like a commercial.
Tickets to see the Strokes in Hyde Park ---> £40
Sony camera to take images of you and your friends ---> £300
Random white-trash drunk/stoned caricature pees on your feet and almost getting into a fight with the party of his 5 wanker friends ---> A lot of nerves, an almost brawl, change of positioning in the crowd and 2 washes of the peed clothes
Watching one of the hottest bands in the world with your best friend intact ---> Priceless
Yep. It was worth it.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 01:39
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
I just got back from watching Miami Vice. What a dissapointment... the story was very weak and the style did not reach the peaks of Heat or The Insider. It's too bad because I dragged 6 more people with me, since the trailer was fantastic. I cannot believe such a weak film is a Michael Mann film... And all because of the fantastic trailer
I'll be more careful next time.
Gong Li looked fantastic by the way :P
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 00:46
Saturday, August 05, 2006
Saturday, July 22, 2006
Sunday, June 11, 2006
So, I'm back to London. I have left all the great people in that great country to return to the UK. I am not sure if this blog will continue to exist. To be honest, I don't see a point to it. Still, I will think of its fate. It will probably transform into something else, that I don't know of.
I don't think any interesting things will happen from now on. Not at least at the same degree to the things that happened in Japan.
Time will tell...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 21:16
Monday, April 10, 2006
Today I'm sick, so I found some time to update the blog with this post about Hanami.
A FACT KNOWN TO ALL OF HUMANITY:
Japan looks its best when sakura (cherry-blossoms) is about.
As with all of the countries in the world, in terms of natural beauty spring is the most beautiful season of the year. But in Japan, sakura blossoms and makes nature at this time unbelievably beautiful! Ofcourse, japanese people agree and they take any opportunity they can to celebrate the beauty of nature under the beautiful flowers. The amazing combination of white and pink in this tree inspires japanese people (nature's beauty always does this, doesn't it...). But here's the catch: the flowers don't usually stay longer than one to two weeks! So this beauty, once a year, represents how beautiful moments in life are so frail and pass quickly. So, almost all japanese go for hanami, which is having a picnic under the sakura (usually involving alot of drinking!). To give you the size of the importance of this period, tv-stations monitor the progressing of the blossoming throughout Japan, while a hanami usually kick-starts the new academic and fiscal years!
Enough talking, on to the pictures I managed to gather... Unfortunately, most of them are not at the peak of the season which is usually around
My house :)
Near my house
Unfortunately there's a problem with blogger.com. Will post a couple more soon!
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 15:27
Sunday, April 09, 2006
Saturday, April 08, 2006
Wednesday, April 05, 2006
Sunday, March 26, 2006
I have learned about it today at about 2pm from Danny's Website. Ofcourse today was the last day, but I thought what the hell I should go. So I went to Odaiba, which is actually quite far from my house... But I thought that would be a good opportunity to take some nice images with my new camera. On my way there, I took some interesting ones
And after about 2 hours I was at Odaiba's Tokyo Big Sight which is this futuristic Star-Wars-Empire-Side building, with MANY people carrying anime-drawn bags full of merchantise
The inside was sparsely decorated
and even though the exhibition was until 6pm and I was there at 4.30pm, they stopped selling tickets... Very very disappointed I returned back to Shibuya, while taking some images of the interesting buildings around Odaiba
I also took some images of Shibuya on a Sunday evening. Have a look how it's like...
I am very very disappointed... You can at least see Danny's images here.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 14:20
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
One of my personal favourites, Thanasis has given us a new cd. Read his statement here (in greek) with his hilarious comments at the end. Also, note the title of track no. 6. Too bad I cannot get my hands on it soon...
ps. thanks Dimitris for pointing this out to me ;)
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 03:37
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
I managed to get it! After the disappointing stroll in Akihabara, I went to Shibuya and saw the camera for Y4000 less. Still, that price was high compared to Amazon.co.jp's. So, I thought, I should get it by the net. BUT, when I came home, the camera was out of stock. It's ok, I said. I will take it from Shibuya. So I woke up yesterday and travelled to Shibuya. I got to the store and asked for the camera.
OUT OF STOCK!
More than irritated, I went to the closest to my house department store and got the camera for even more. Still better than greek prices, relatively same with english. In any case I GOT IT! And I am so far happy with it, if you exclude the fact that there is no battery level indicator...
Some samples. The view from my house on a day
and on a night
More interesting photos soon...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 03:21
Monday, March 20, 2006
I had a great night yesterday. we went with Yoko-san to a Kobe-beef place. for those who don't know, it's a specially treated kind of beef. it is rumoured that the cows are being massaged and fed beer to have a better taste.
and believe me, they do... by far the best beef I have ever had.
ofcourse, at a Y12000 (60 pounds/85 euros) price for the set menu with 200grams of beef it's not an everyday treat. Still, TOTALY worth it!
after the fantastic meal, I also witnessed my first cherry-blossoms (sakura)! the "national" flower of Japan, captures the spirit of life's frailty for the japanese people, since the cherry blossoms stay for only a little while every year. a beautiful but very short sight, it is usually accompanied by the hanami, picnics in parks and general feel-good mood. the media crazily follows the cherry-blossoms evolution from the north to the south of Japan. truly sugoi.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 16:15
for all you 10 people that don't know yet, Final Fantasy XII is out. FF are, I think, the most best selling game franchise ever. and for a reason. the graphics are always on a different level than anything else, the storylines are amazingly complex and interesting and the enjoyment huge. so, to make you understand the popularity of the game in Japan, I will just show you what I have found on my nearest combini (convenience store) on the release day of FFXII. enter the FFXII potion
a RedBull-style drink. I haven't tried it (yet).
UPDATE: It was not that great...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 16:13
Sunday, March 19, 2006
so I went to Akihabara once more on the search of a new camera. I was disappointed. the price for the camera was too high compared to an internet price I have found. maybe I don't know where to search, but still I was disappointed. of course Akiba was as always very lively with maids, idols and otakus running around in search of everything possible. there were also the legions of Final Fantasy followers trying to get a glimpse of the new amazing game.
I'm not happy to say so but I will buy the camera from Amazon.co.jp!!!!! who would have thought...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 10:09
Friday, March 17, 2006
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Sunday, March 05, 2006
I'm back! Japan is fantastic as always but the trip has taken its toll on my sleeping pattern... for three days in a row, I am sleeping at least 5am and waking up on the afternoon...
anyways, yesterday I went to a live concert by a band called "Mice Parade". their sound is fairly different but they were tiring with some points being very very long... still, it was a great night.
I now have to concentrate on my work. new posts accordingly...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 14:45
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
btw, it's approximately my birthday today... still, it's not the best thing to spend one's almost birthday inside an airplane, but my family and friends gave me a surprise party on Saturday so I'm not complaining.
I have to wait for two more years to have a decent birthday...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 09:09
It has been a great week. I have seen many good friends, I have been to Athens, Thessaloniki, Edessa, Giannitsa and seen from my university years, I had my fair share of coffees and great food and a new (impressive! who would have thought...) passport.
I am once more in snowy Zurich with the most decent internet connection I have had in a week and preparing for a two-month run of hard-work.
It was worth it.
Thank you sensei.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 09:04
Sunday, February 19, 2006
It has been a while... しばらくでしょうね。I have finished a report I had to submit yesterday and it took a lot of time... anyways...
I'm back in Europe! currently i'm spending some time in the Zurich airport, having lost 12euros trying to get my laptop to connect to the net...
In any case, I'm very excited to go back to greece since I will be seeing many of my friends that I haven't seen in ages. So my flight schedule was/is:
7.00am Hiyoshi -> Shibuya (by train)
8.09am Shibuya-> Narita Airport (by train)
11.00am Narita -> Zurich (+14hours by airplane)
9.00 pm Zurich -> Athens
7.00 am Athens -> Salonika
9.30 am Salonika->Edessa
13.00 pm Edessa->Giannitsa
that's a total of 25 hours of constant travel!!!!!!! the highlight was a half-an-hour long conversation with a japanese person sitting next to me in japanese! I REALLY need to study from now on...
given the fact that I have slept for about 2 hours at saturday night, it is fairly interesting....
especially when I will go to the police station to get the new passport.
the mood will be great for "public service screaming" --- greek style.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 17:48
Monday, February 06, 2006
My truly great professor in Japan decided the following:
- I should go back to Greece for a week and get a new passport. (yeaaaaaaaa!)
- I should stay 2 more months in Japan until May (super-yeaaaaaaaaa!)
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 10:08
I had the chance to spend yesterday in Yokohama with great company. we saw Munich and talked alot. closed about 3 coffee-shops :P. but we discussed like old friends even though we don't know much about each other. I am really glad I met that person. yesterday's result: today's fever...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 10:02
Sunday, January 29, 2006
should I get one after all? is the camera really the reason I cannot get good pictures or is it my non-existent photography capabilities? I would say the second. I have to train my photography skill with the camera I currently have before buying a better one. camera buying is officially postponed...
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 16:20
today I had a great time going to Shinjuku. my friend Ichi-san was playing the trombone in the Amadeus Society Orchestra, which is closely related with Keio University. all of the band played perfectly works from Carl Nielsen (Aladdin Suite), Joaquin Rodrigo (Concierto de Aranjuez) and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (Symphonic suite "Scheherazade"). the music was amazing, and I was really impressed by the introduction of classical guitar in the Rodrigo's work. actually, the Adagio part I already knew as "Follow Me" by Kimiko Itoh in Ghost in the Shell: Innocence (which by the way is an excellent movie). the guitarist was Shin-ichi Fukuda who was applauded heartly from the audience.
of course, it wasn't only the concert that made the day great. I had a great company with me, Kumiko and Yukata with me. we had a really nice time in a tempura restaurant in Shinjuku that (ironically) I suggested.
a memorable day.
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 16:03
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Sunday, January 22, 2006
Christos insisted to go somewhere with the Nozomi Shinkansen (300+km/h). we was actually whining on this since before he came to japan... so what's the best place to go with the shinkansen other than Kyoto?! ofcourse, when we got in the, fairly expensive, train he complained because the train was TOO fast for him to get photos...
when we got there, we followed the "path of wisdom" along the old canals of Kyoto. it was a fantastic walking path. actually it would be great if we didn't actually walked there in the night... later on we returned to Gion, the district with the geishas. we actually spoted one or two! we had dinner and then we found our hotel which was again japanese! of course, with a high-tech toilet ;) late at night, we ended up in a hotel in Kyoto station sipping some really aged whisky!
next day, we started walking from kiyomizu-dera towards heiyan-jingu the place in which Scarlet walked in Lost in Translation one of favourites. we went to many temples along the way until we reached our final destination. unfortunately, my camera card was full and Christos would not take the images I wanted... so what better to do than transfer the images from the card to the laptop... in the garden... while it was raining... and it was closing time... and the guard was waiting... ok, not the best of ideas....
Blog vandalised by kzarog at 16:34