Friday, January 27, 2006

Choppy Waters and Snowboarding

Another week has washed over us here with a brief but relatively uneventful conference which was made more interesting because of the fact me and a few other people skipped off in the early afternoon to do some shopping across town and mingled back in with the general population during the break between sessions in the afternoon.

Of further note was my attendance at the ‘Things you need to arrange for leaving Japan’ a list of which is just as extensive as the things I needed to do to come here. It’s all rather boring, involves nominating tax representatives so lets leave it at that.

Episode 3 of Chickens is complete and up on the site. Had lots of fun making all the forest backgrounds by layering trees at different scales over each other to give some notion of distance perspective.

This time next week I will be on a plane somewhere over central Japan going on a nicely expensive snowboarding weekend in Hokkaido…After five months of solid saga it’s beginning to wear again, have to motivate myself to be as happy and positive as I need to be to get the job done properly here. Time for a break. Holidays are good. Speaking of holidays, some people take them a bit more seriously then needed.

Middle aged people who go on cruise liners can suck. No really, you guys can suck ass. I can say quite happily that its mostly middle aged people who pay for holidays on these floating pleasure barges, these mobile Hilton hotels, because anyone my age just doesn’t have the money, and even if they did, would do something far more exciting than being chauffeured around exotic islands in a floating shop front of western civilization, looking at quaint locals and being sold things by people desperate to make enough cash to survive. I’ve had this opinion of cruise liners for quite some time and working in a waterfront bar only reinforced this position. However, the latest pack of whining, fat pampered morons who are throwing their toys around onboard the QM2 are enough to make me want to start up an enterprise in Somalia that focuses solely on firing RPG’s at cruise liners. Just read this article on the BBC.

‘Anxiety and depression’ after twelve days at sea? Good God look at how far we have fallen in the west over the past 100 years! Long gone are the days when young men and women would pack themselves onto a boat and sail for THREE MONTHS to the other side of the world for a chance at a better life. Braving storms and ice in rickety wooden death traps where permanent sea sickness could be a way off life if you couldn’t adjust. Now we have a few rich people, probably a minority of the total on-board population who complain about their encroaching psychological problems when, due to an accident with the ships propulsion systems, they are forced to spend twelve days floating at sea onboard a stabilized, air conditioned, pleasure ship replete with casino’s, a full theatre, movie screens, swimming pools, gyms, saunas, karaoke bars and all the gourmet food their heaving bloated fat bellies can eat.

In the real world, sometimes things go wrong. You have to accept this. Nothing is perfect, and hey guys it’s a horrible cliché but lets face it, worse things have happened at sea. Sure, some people have missed stops, some people have missed a hotel booking and there has certainly been some inconvenience to those on board and the company is offering compensation, which may, or may not be adequate. I don’t know, I don’t have any figures to base an analysis on. However, I totally lost patience with this storm in a teacup when I read about middle aged peoples psychological problems at sea on holiday in the worlds largest, most luxurious cruise ship. Filing a class action suit may even be justifiable depending on the financial loss incurred by the holiday makers and considering the miss-representation that they claim Cunard guilty off. Not being in full possession of all the facts it’s hard to judge.

However, once I hear people crying about how they are depressed, anxious and stressed inside their ocean pleasure dome it just reeks of opportunists trying to take advantage of a situation. Come on you pampered toy dogs, just relax and have sauna, then go to the bar and have a drink before your enormous gourmet dinner, try making the most of the situation you’re faced with. Your cries for help fall on quite deaf ears back in the real world. You booked a cruise on a ship and you’re sick of seeing the sea? What the hell were you thinking might happen if something goes wrong? More money than brains obviously.

Nearly time for lunch! Woo!


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