May 23rd, 2009



  • 06:16 In my dream, Facebook had the option of saying you "adore" someone, but I wasn't sure how to use it. #
  • 06:21 I hear that Godsmack is going to be starring in a production of "Godspell." #
  • 16:28 There's a sign on the bathroom wall where I work that says, "Identity thieves love trash." Hey, just like Oscar the Grouch! #
  • 16:31 @samuraifrog Now I can't help thinking of the Allan Sherman song where he rhymes "Lollobrigida" with "Wichita." #
  • 16:33 @heiditron3000 Do they cancel each other out? #
  • 16:35 @samuraifrog So who's he marrying? Or is he going to marry both Betty AND Veronica, and live on a Mormon compound? #
  • 16:37 @gick7 Some Jesus Juice, perhaps? #
  • 17:04 Isn't "Superabound" an awesome song? I still don't know what an ishist is, though. #
  • 17:19 @gick7 Because THAT'S what everyone needs to remember Jacko for! Not, you know, the Moonwalk or Thriller or anything. #
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Oh, pity me, Garuda

A mythological figure I've been thinking about recently is Garuda, the King of Birds from Hindu legend. I like the idea of an avian deity, and his name is just fun to say. So I thought I'd do a little looking into the background of the bird.

While the term can apparently be used as a generic term for divine birds (sort of like Triton in Greek mythology, I suppose), THE Garuda hatched fully grown from an egg (sometimes said to be the same egg that produced eight celestial elephants), and was so powerful that he had to reduce his size and energy after a plea from the gods. He is the steed of Vishnu, and one of the most famous myths concerning him involves his enmity with his aunt Kadru, the mother of serpents. His own mother, Vinata, ended up as a slave to her sister due to losing a bet. In order to win back her freedom, Garuda had to steal the elixir of immortality from the gods. He succeeded, but made a bargain with the sky god Indra, which resulted in the bird-god's tricking the snakes into performing religious rites before drinking the elixir, which gave an opportunity for Indra to steal it back. Ever since then, Garuda and the snakes were enemies, with the bird devouring as many serpents as he could. It's also said that his journey to take the elixir is when he became Vishnu's mount, but this page says that this relationship started when Garuda stole the Moon, and Vishnu was the only god who could prevail against him.

Garuda is sometimes depicted as fully avian, and other times as partially human. I have to say that images of him with a partially human body and Vishnu riding him look a bit homoerotic. {g}

When I was searching for pictures of the god on Google, this one immediately caught my attention, probably because it looks kind of like a Chocobo:

This unfinished Garuda statue is in Indonesia, where the bird is an important symbol, appearing on the flag and in the name of their national airline. It was meant to be a giant monument and the centerpiece of the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park. They ended up having neither the budget nor the cooperation necessary to complete it, though.

And if I may leave the avian ruler aside for this final thought, happy birthday to colleenanne!
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Lower-Quality Adventures in Videoland

I think it's about time I turned to the final installment in the Mario and Captain N cartoon series, known as Captain N and the New Super Mario World. Yes, apparently "new" is officially part of the title, despite the fact that it's now over fifteen years old. I watched this show when it was new, but even then I realized that it was quite lacking when compared to the earlier cartoons of the same sort. And those weren't exactly masterpieces, so that's saying something. The animation was even cheaper and more lackluster than before, and the plots even seemed a bit thinner.

The Super Mario World cartoon took place in Dinosaur Land, where, for some reason, Mario, Luigi, and Princess Peach Toadstool were living. Doesn't the Princess have her own kingdom to rule? Yoshi is there, but he's really annoying. I like Yoshi a lot, but I didn't care for this show's decision to make him into a bratty kid who speaks in broken English and baby talk. I think the Yoshi of the game was supposed to be an adult. I mean, he has his own house, and wrote a letter that Mario could read. Of course, there's more than one Yoshi in the game, but only one in the show. There are some other dinosaurs, though, as well as an indigenous human population that everyone calls "cave people," even though they actually live in a city of dome-shaped houses. As there's no hint of such people in the game, I don't know why they became such a central part of the cartoon. Mario and company are always trying to come up with ways to civilize them, which makes me wonder if their presence in Dinosaur Land is a Peace Corps sort of thing, or like a mission without the religion. Toad isn't in this series, supposedly because he wasn't in the game, but it's not like those cave people were either. There is a regular character named Oogtar, a badly behaved cave kid who has the same voice actor that Toad did in the earlier cartoons, but unfortunately he's sometimes even more irritating than Yoshi.

Also included in the show was the third season of Captain N, although it isn't part of the Complete Series DVD set, due to some weird legal issues making CN and SMW the same show, while I guess CN and SMB3 weren't. The season actually consisted of only seven episodes (the remaining Mario cartoons were accompanied by trimmed-down versions of episodes from the first two seasons), and they cut a lot of corners. They were shortened to half the length of the earlier cartoons in the series, only one episode featured the entire N Team, and they cut even more corners with the animation than they had before.

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