You Think About All The Friends That You Hate To Leave

This past Friday, I made my final decision: In four months I’m leaving my hometown of Sudbury, Ontario and moving to Oshawa, Ontario to attend Durham College for their Computer Programmer Analyst Program. It’s a three-year program which is a huge commitment, especially for someone as old as me. But I’m excited, it’s a new era for me, as I finally get the chance to start life anew. After all, Journalism didn’t do anything for me. Maybe entering the tech industry will change things.

It’s also exciting because I have to admit, I don’t actually like this town. Nothing ever happens and the majority of the population is paste-eatingly stupid. So that’s two strikes against it. And really, I have nothing holding me here. No reason to stay. Some may mention my family, but as I’ve said before, I don’t actually like my family. So that doesn’t help.

Plus, the move is a chance to reset, and finally get rid of all the crap I’ve been accumulating after all these years.

It is an opportunity, and one I shall not miss.

And one other thing: I don’t think I’m ever coming back. I have no reason to, as I’ve already stated.

Oh, sure, I have friends, who I like, and will miss. But sadly, I’m not particularly close to any of them. We rarely spend any time together. So they don’t hold me back as much as one might think.

It’s actually kinda sad when you think about it. I first met these guys back in October. And ten months later, I may never see them again, unless we plan to meet up at the next Anime Convention. Let’s hope that happens.

But yeah, I’m leaving everything behind. And that’s why the first season finale of Littlest Pet Shop is one of the few episodes I could empathise with. Continue reading

Littlest Kleptomaniacs

Littlest Pet Shop is a strange show.

Our heroes are pets who live in a pet store, plus one human with Doctor Doolittle powers. Backing them up is an eccentric cast of mental patients, and an occasional random animal whom we never see again.

I still don’t get why Sugar Sprinkles went walkabout after her appearance, but Butterscotch kept coming back even though I want her to die.

I also don’t know why so many other animals visit once and are never heard from again. Like Gail, Zoe’s sister, who would have had every reason to make return appearances. In fact, I don’t know why Zoe visits the shop, but her sister doesn’t. Let me guess: Gail has a day job. She works retail.

But this week, we introduce another animal guest star. And this time, there a reason we’ll never see him again. Everyone hates him. Continue reading

Egos, Lies and Dismemberment

Friendship is not easy. Sometimes personalities clash, and tempers flare. Differing political opinions, religious views, and even something as mundane as one’s mood can cause a friendship to break apart.

Sometimes, this can also happen between people who are too alike. People whose egos are the size of planets, because generally, you can only have one alpha per group.

I’ve seen this happen a lot. And before you start making unfounded accusations; Yes, I was generally one of the egos. It’s something I’m working on.

But the collapse of a friendship can happen before you even realize it. Suddenly you say one wrong thing, they react, then you react, then suddenly you hate each other, and you think: “How did that happen, oh wait.”

It doesn’t ever feel good to lose a friend. Never. It feels even worse when you know for a fact that you’re in the wrong. So you stop, and do what you might be afraid to do: Apologize.

Some see it as a sign of weakness, especially American politicians. I don’t see how, but that’s how they see it.

I don’t agree. I just see it as something you do when you’re in the wrong. It can clear the air, and make everything better. It may not accomplish anything, and you might not get anything out of it, but that’s how the world works. You don’t get an award for doing the right thing.

But why do so many people take so long to admit they’re wrong? Egos, typically. And this week on Littlest Pet Shop, two of the show’s biggest egos go head-to-head and try to out-Pinkie-Pie one another. Forgetting why they’re doing it. Continue reading

Best Frienemies

There’s a crucial difference between an adversary and a friend. Friends have a tendency to help you in any situation, regardless of how it might affect them.

Adversaries do the exact opposite.

How the hell could these lines blur?

Well, sometimes perception is everything. You may think someone is being mean or animus, or that they’re out to get you. When they may be the closest ally you will ever have.

In my personal experience, this has happened many times. Not just on the internet, as I’ve explained before, but in real life as well.

Once I had the unfortunate experience of having a prick as a roommate; he was a violent, arrogant, moronic bigot. I mentioned him before, and he’s since gotten his ass evicted by refusing to talk it out with the landlord. When the landlord asked to speak with him, he said he’d rather rest up for partying later that night.

I’m not sorry to see him go, but there is one thing to note: I actually tried to get along with him. I tried to help him. I didn’t want to see him evicted and I didn’t try to get him evicted. That was what everyone else did.

I was probably the closest thing he had to an ally in the entire building. But for some reason, he thought I was out to get him. He saw me as an enemy. And I had every reason to hate this guy, but I don’t hate. Pretty much as a rule, I don’t hate. I’d be a right ass if I did.

Maybe I need to pick a more a more universal analogy… The second half of Portal 2. Hey, that’s actually apt in several ways. Props to Jonathan Coulton for doing the impossible and writing an even better finale song than Still Alive.

Though I’m sure not everyone has played Portal 2. There must be another! AH! Littlest Pet Shop! Continue reading

False Love

‘Why?’ is a simple question that people don’t ask often enough.

Why spend $10 on a movie ticket? Why take a trip to New York? Why write? Why work in retail? Why go to college?

Some of those questions might have legitimate or obvious answers. Then there are questions like this:

Why enter your pet in a dog show?

The typical answer to this might be: Because they love it! Because they have fun!

But, that would be an outright lie. Typically at a dog or cat show, the animals spend half their time trapped in steel cages, and the other half being examined like a piece of meat. The only fun they might have is the time they spend with you, which means the animal would have more fun at a park, or at home.

No, the real reason to enter your animal in a dog or cat show is for your own self-gratification. To win a prize and make your pointless and shallow life feel a bit more fulfilling. It’s the same reason one would write a blog where they insult people and put them down for no real reason. To make themselves feel big.

Wait…

Anyway, I have a hard time believing any animal enjoys those kinds of competitions. So it’s all for the owners, to socialize and shop for stuff they claim is for their pets but is really bought so they can show off.

It’s lies like these that piss me off. How many parents enter their children in talent shows and schedule showbiz auditions? Often, it’s not because the kids like it, but because the parent wanted to be in showbiz, so they try to live vicariously though their children.

Admittingly, I’m probably also gonna do that when I have kids.

Yes, it’s all about the adults, the owners, and the people who sit in the background. But they lie, to the world, and I assume themselves.

Which eloquently leads me into this week’s episode of Littlest Pet Shop. We all remember that Zoe is the diva right? Continue reading

A Character-Development Walk

The reason I love Littlest Pet Shop is the same reason I love My Little Pony. The episodes are well-written, the plotlines are interesting, the animation is superb, and the characters are not simply caricatures.

Unfortunately, this is less true with Littlest Pet Shop. Zoe is basically your archetypal diva, with very little deviation; Pepper generally fades into the background, which is ridiculously ironic; and Russel is just the generic smart guy of the group, Twilight Sparkle with a stick up her ass.

Then there’s Blythe, whose position as a fashion designer doesn’t really sit well with me. I mean fashion design isn’t any worse than any other career path. But it feels so shockingly generic and cliché. Especially for a female character.

That being said, I do like the characters, and the overall show. But the lack of character development cripples things somewhat.

Which leads me eloquently to this week’s episode, where the potential existed to give two major supporting characters significant development, But that potential was perplexingly and literally beheaded. Allow me to explain. Continue reading

Littlest Plotlines

It can be hard to maintain focus in a story. Especially if you have a creative mind. You can try to focus solely on one simple plot thread. But then, sometimes, a supporting character shows up; and suddenly, you get an idea for that character which you then branch out on.

Other times your simple thread might require a certain event for plot convenience. However that event, you realize, would have far-reaching repercussions outside your simple thread.

Then there are times your simple plot thread is just too short. You can’t come up with enough material within that thread to pad it out without looking stupid. So you tack on another plot thread that is only tangentially connected.

Which brings us to this week’s episode of Littlest Pet Shop, where Vinnie finds himself at the city dump, and Blythe loses her superpowers. And no, these two plot threads are not connected in any significant way. Continue reading

Party in the LPS

Some people are bothered by how materialistic our society is.

I can kinda understand. Being obsessed as some people are with acquiring more items and objects, it seem frivolous. But the way I see it, the things people buy are not simply objects, they’re something more.

Depending on the specific item, they represent joy, safety, security, self-reliance, or intellectualism. For instance, owning tools means you have the ability to fix something at a moment’s notice, on your own. It can help you become independent and reliable.

Toys can have the same impact. For me, my toy collection brings me happiness. Just looking at it, for some reason, can wipe my blues away… sometimes.

Then there are gifts. Which can represent the love one has for another. The more effort the individual puts into acquiring the gift, only to give it to someone else. It shows how much they care. The price tag is just a representation of the amount of labour one must put in to acquire it. It’s not shallow to want someone to spend a lot of money on you (okay, maybe it is a little). It’s representative of the effort they put in.

Then there are the custom-made gifts, which takes more thought and effort than anything one can pull off a shelf. And something nice, and personal, from someone who cares, can mean more to you than anything else in the world.

So what if you lost it. What if you lost something that meant a lot to you? A custom-made gift from someone you loved. How far would you go to get it back?

Well, this week on Littlest Pet Shop, we see just how far Blythe is willing to go for the same thing, when she loses a valuable necklace in some cake batter. Yes, she does work in a pet shop, and I will get to that. Continue reading