About being a former Amazonian

Amazon1I worked at an Amazon Fulfillment center roughly 4-5 years ago for the holidays making $10/hr for 3-5 hours a day. I remember them explaining how co-workers complaining about this or that, and one of the things was the pay. $10 an hour was better than I was making at a grocery store after 3 or 4 years of service at the time, so I was baffled.

On a regular day, you go in through a metal detector before your shift, making sure that you do not have you cell phone on you and that you aren’t stealing, and then after clocking in via Kronos and checking what you are doing that day, you head over for your scanners as well as announcements/stretching.

One of the positions is grabbing boxes off of a conveyor belt, scan the box, find the pallet it goes on, scan the floor where the pallet is, place it on it, and repeat. Supervisors would watch you, and if you were going slow, they would tell you that they had been watching you, and that you need to speed up. That sucks. I would pray to not have to do a job that uses a scanner.

In the all concrete building, with high security, constantly being monitored, having to take your break at a certain time, etc. It kind of felt like how I could imagine jail would feel… although, if you worked hard enough during Christmas time you might end up winning a free TV!

While all of that sucks… I’ve been treated similarly. I work at a grocery store. I’ve had managers call me on my phone on my register, and say ‘You’re in the red. Why are you not scanning more items in a minute? You need to speed things up, as you shouldn’t have that many people in your line.’ We have a heat sensor that tells how many people are in a line, btw.

A different job I held  in 2010 was over the phone tech support for AT&T U-verse. Phone calls were supposed to only last so many minutes, and you would be reprimanded for habitually going over. Also, there would be times when you would immediately go from one call to the next. Also, you had to dial a number into your phone to go to the bathroom, and dial back in… only have so many minutes per day for bathroom breaks.

The Young Turks talk about an Amazon employee talking about their working conditions, and yeah… it sucks? But… I mean… this isn’t new?

*sigh* I don’t know what to say. Does it suck? Yeah? …. …. that’s why I only worked there for the holiday?

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Millenials are killing Yaoi?!

ainokusabiThis article might be a little bit NSFW, but I was in charge of badge checking at Louisianime 2019 this weekend for voice actor/director Brittany Lauda and fellow voice actor Matt Shipman’s LGBT in Anime panel, and some things there were said that really bothered me.

Apparently in 2017, Media Blasters dubbed the yaoi anime Ai no Kusabi. Brittany and Matt kept going on and on about how it was the first yaoi to be adapter in English, and how proud they were of it… especially seeing as how Media Blasters was not sure if it was going to be successful or not. Apparently this 4 episode show was popular, and some more yaoi titles have started to come to the West… but the whole idea that this was a ‘new’ thing just did not sit well with me.

GravitationI got up from my chair, and said “I haven’t seen your show, but what about Gravitation? That came out in the early 2000’s.”

They hadn’t seen Gravitation. According to their understanding, Gravitation was more into boy’s love, and different from their show. They then tangent-ed about how some older shows didn’t count because they had one or two gay characters here and there, and that once again… their show is different because… I guess all of their characters are gay? What a narrow world view.

Gravitation is a show about a young rock star falling in love with a cold romance novelist. The main character tries very difficult to make the novelist fall in love with him even more, despite the fact that the novelist already does. Spoiler warning, the main character even gets traumatically raped by a bunch of dudes! This show is really gay, and involves some serious topics even. WTF?

Also, Boy’s Love? Anime News Network describes their show thusly: “The four-episode remake series adapts Rieko Yoshihara’s boys-love novels.” Their own show is defined as a ‘boy’s love’ show.

Gravitation 2I described the panel to a fellow volunteer who’s been going to conventions for quite a few years like this: ‘She claims that they are the first to dub a yaoi anime into English.’ and he said ‘Which one? Gravitation or something?

Okay, okay, so maybe I should check with some more of my friends later… after all, I was staff and I didn’t want to be very rude at their panel… especially over a topic that I am not 100% knowledgeable about.

I asked a webcomic artist’s chatroom, and they very much disagreed with the statement. Maybe if they had said that Ai no Kusabi was the first mainstream yaoi show it could be over looked… but once again… Gravitation… but maybe they meant something more serious?

Kizuna and Kizuna 2 were dubbed in 1994 and 1995. It’s about gay romance, kendo, yakuza… and from what I’ve seen from the parts I skimmed through while watching it on youtube for this article… it’s really gay.

The actor who plays the main character in Kisuna, Kei Enjoji, is Dan Green who much later went on to play characters such as Yugi Muto (Yu-Gi-Oh!: The Dark Side of Dimensions), Knuckles the Echidna (Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing), and Leonardo (Turtles Forever).

Seeing as Brittany Lauda was born in 1993, I guess she was not aware of this yaoi gem from when she was 1 years old? Matt Shipman born a year before her in 1992… so… *sigh*

Why do Millennials think that they are the gayest people around? Also, we did not invent everything, and maybe we should just get over ourselves?

Congrats on getting 4 episode long yaoi dubbed into English and it being well received though, as that is a great feat unto itself?

I Thanos snapped my video games away?

Zelda ocarina of time mangaFor (at least) the second time in my life, I’ve purged myself of most of my video games. Almost all of my GC, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, and Wii U games netted me over $170 in Gamestop store credit. True, I put that into gift cards from Subway, Xbox, Steam, and Taco Bell… but it was the right decision.

I would have bought an Amazon gift card, but sadly… Amazon cards can not be bought by store credit. The women behind the counter tried to do it by turning the store credit into a GameStop Gift Card… and still… nothing. So now I can eat and buy a few digital games on PC and Xbox One… which I’m keeping as my Blu Ray player.

Eventually, maybe I will get rid of my NES, SNES, Super Famicom, PSX, PS2, Dreamcast, and Sega Saturn… I swear to god, I got rid of most of my physical games O_O … most being at least 50%…

OH MY GOD! WITHOUT MY copy of The Legend of Zelda Collector’s Edition, I have no way of playing Ocarina of Time! Oh wait… 3DS… Whew… that was a close one.

twilight princessI’m not happy… not all of the time. My games collect dust in a box in my garage, not even properly displayed so they can peer over my should and judge me for not playing them.

My roommate got rid of all of his games years ago. Wii, PS3, Xbox 360, DS, and a crap ton of PC games that he literally threw away. He also got rid of his DVDs. He too wasn’t happy. He seems happier now.

Tips_Tricks_Volume_IV_Issue_1_1997-01_LFP_USI want to note that GameStop, outside of selling every single game independently, was my best option out of three. I first tried Half Priced Books, who after over an hour and a half told me that all of the games that I brought in, some DVD and Blu Rays that were not open, and a crap ton of magazines and some books would only net me $130. Gamestop would have given me a little under that for just MOST of my games alone. Cash America Pawn? they would have given me $1 for each of my Xbox 360 games, and looked at me weird with my cube collection.

mario kart double dashOH MY GOD I SOLD Mario Kart Double Dash!

It doesn’t matter though… because the friends that I played that game with were from over a decade ago, and re-buying it didn’t re-buy that experience for me.

It was the right time to sell, as each game got me an additional 50% in store credit. I’d have received more if I had subscribed to their magazine, but I would have still had to pay $3 of the store credit to get their magazine for a year. Nope.

Switch_SuperSmashBrosUltimate_illustration_02OH MY GOD! SMASH BROS! Melee, Brawl, and Wii U! What did I do?! NOOOooo… doesn’t matter. I still own my physical consoles, and there are a lot of games downloaded that I can still play… and… ouch.

BUT I WASN’T PLAYING THEM! The idea that I would be a grandfather someday and some kiddo would find my games in a trunk in the attic and become engrossed in them like I once was… I might never have that… so things are fine. They are fine.

I would like to point out that I got the most money for my Gamecube games… still there was a trade bonus. I’m still gaming a little… and there’s some hope for the future.

John_and_Cortana_re-unite_-_Close_shot

We are not Nazis, nor is every hater a man.

antinaziClownfish TV as well as other people who have either been on the more neutral side to the far #IStandWithVic side of the #KickVic hashtag movement have sometimes been yelled at as being ‘Nazis’.

Meanwhile, people who have not liked shows such as Ghostbusters 2016, She-Ra, or the upcoming Captain Marvel have been called that and even worse… Men.

What’s funny is that I on the pro ethics in games journalism, anti Ghostbusters 2016, but pro #IStandWithVic side was also called a Nazi. *sigh* Not everyone is a Nazi. Some people are, such as many but not all of the people who protested for confederate statues in 2016 in Charlottesville.

Kittyhawk GBDNATE ZaraAlso, women, such as webcomic artist and indie video game creator and even cameo Kittyhawk, who both dislikes Ghostbusters 2016 and She-Ra but oh so loves women with huge boobs even… is in fact not a man, nor a Nazi.

I know this is the equivalent of ‘not all women’ but seriously… ‘not all women.’ It is incredibly sexist to revoke someone’s womanhood based on their opinion. Stop erasing women and their voices just because they disagree with the narrative you are pushing.

netsenshi_evelyn_mermaid smallLike I said earlier, I was on the #IStandWithVic side of the #KickVic situation. I think that at this point, everyone who is on the #KickVicSide and #IStandWithVic side needs to shut up though… let the lawyers do their job… and see what happens.

Also… it’s really weird that Vic Mignogna’s lawyer Ty Beard is on the internet shit talking and swinging his law dick around twitter before officially notifying the women and husbands Vic Mignogna is… I guess… suing on Facebook. *shrugs* Seems kind of childish and unfair to do to everyone involved, including the #IStandWithVic crowd even.

I dunno. I just want this whole thing to go away until everyone is in court.

#Kickvic≤Anime Gate

ushicon4SeanPeople have been clamoring that there is an Anime Gate going on, and that taking down the popular voice actor, Vic… Mig…nawn… Vic. Taking down Vic was a huge part of this. My argument is Anime Gate is much older than #KickVic, and is much broader. Let’s start at the beginning.

Signs at conventions asking for hugs/kisses, people taking pictures with cosplayers with their hand on their boob/butt, hyped up youngsters running at people full speed for a glomp, etc… Anime Convention goers have always been debaucherous, and there has always been this awkward excited energy to anime conventions… and a lot of us finally grew up and it became more okay to say ‘This! This! I don’t like THIS!’

momokun 021519
Momokun

2014’s Cosplay is Not Consent is where Anime Gate really started from. Then we have the whole Momokun situation where a cosplay guest was being all handsy and gropish with other attendees. People complained and conventions restricted her appearances but lately it’s as if people forgot about her.

In between, we’ve had the whole Anime Matsuri situation, where John Leigh of Anime Matsuri had lolita guests claiming that he had harassed them both online and in-person.

Vic Mignogna has had allegations whispered at conventions since I’ve been going to them in 2004 that I have personally heard of. Women claiming that Vic is creepy, that conventions were going to stop having him as a guest, etc.

Vic_MignognaThere is a spreadsheet going around of accused abusers from anime conventions. Right around this time, #KickVic started. Something like #KickVic was almost destined to come up in this post #Metoo world. The allegations against Vic Mignogna aren’t that bad even, for the most part. Too huggy and kissy on women/girls of questionable ages for way too long of a time. That sums up this whole Vic thing, in a nut shell.

‘This! This! I don’t like THIS!’

While convention behavior between guest and attendee, cosplayer and attendee, and even guest and convention volunteers once you factor in Vic’s alleged behavior towards staff when he doesn’t get his way, is only half of what could be considered an Anime Gate.

teen-titans-goYou then have Westerners trying to re-make anime in their own image, what with Crunchy Roll allegedly misappropriating funds to make High Guardian Spice, Steven Universes nods to video games and anime, Crunchy Roll ignoring the popular Goblin Slayer for it’s yearly awards because it’s content is problematic, Netflix’s She-Ra, and the countless ‘Ameria-manga’ cartoon and comic art styles that have come before all of this.

chibimoonThe real Anime Gate might just be the fact that a lot of the 2nd generation of Anime fans who were 90’s kids finally grew up and took off the rose tented glasses, and said enough was enough on social media… where they were finally heard.

But hey… that’s just a theory… an Anime Gate theory!

The Vic Mignogna situation…

Vic_MignognaThis whole… #kickvic and #IStandWithVic situation is… *sigh* upsetting to everyone, involved or not. Basically, for years, people alleged that voice actor Vic Mignogna was an inappropriate guest at anime conventions.

People have been hitting twitter, myself as an anime convention goer since 2004 included, and yeah… we have all been pretty bad to each other.

He admits to hugging and kissing people who may not have wanted it because he’s lazy. Some of those people were under age possibly, so couldn’t have consented. I get that kissing people on the cheek can be a greeting, but it’s unusual for a man Vic’s age with women who might be too young to consent… especially because they are… you know… strangers, and he represents the shows that he works for.

marzgurlFull disclosure, the woman who coined the #KickVic hashtag, but did not start the discussion over Vic Mignogna, Kaylyn Saucedo A.K.A. Marzgurl, was a friend of mine who I used to go to anime conventions with in Texas, lived next to for roughly 6 months, and I even traveled to Japan with her in 2010.

Vic Mignogna was a guest in 2012 at Louisianime, a convention one of my friends runs that I often volunteer for. I was given the opportunity to eat with the guests, but after learning that Vic would be there, I declined because Vic Mignogna has always weirded me out… only partially due to the allegations I had heard whispers of in person at conventions.

Vic was let go from Rooster Teeth and Funimation.

The worst allegations were that in the late 80’s he was a teacher that tried to have sex, but failed, with an underage high school girl he invited over to his place. At a convention , a woman who was underage, was in an elevator and Vic supposedly put his hand down her dress. Three voice actresses have backed up claims, including Bulma’s voice actress Monica Rial and Vegita and Goku’s voice actors have back up Monica.

vic letter0

Vic Mignogna, once again, has apologized for maybe hugging and kissing people without consent out of laziness. In another apology he says that he’s course correcting, recommitting to God, and seeking the help of a counselor. He then told everyone on both sides to not hatefully target people.

vic letter

Monica Rial has been talking to a lawyer, and supposedly Vic Mignogna has also sought one as well. A lawyer unrelated, but bias towards Vic is going to start a fund for him. In his youtube video, he says tactically Vic should go after Marzgurl, Rooster Teeth, Funimation, Monica Rial, etc… and as someone who knows Marzgurl, I find that worrying.

Edward Elric Fullmetal AlchemistI am not a lawyer, nor do I know a lot about law… but this whole thing is weird for me. From both sides making things up, such as Anime News Network blurring a photo in an article of someone to make things look worse, the girl in the photo saying it was out of context but then sharing a different picture that was taken either before or after to prove it (which is weird). #IStandWithVic allegedly fabricating screen shots of a Facebook Group plotting to make fake photoshop images, someone supposedly supporting #KickVic faking a swatting… Pensacon threatening to have attendees arrested if people go to Monica’s panels showing support for Vic… things are crazy.

All of that, and I haven’t even touched his fan club that literally worship him, and hunt down anyone that talks poorly about Vic who he told to do whatever they could to help him

vic fan club

Todd and Vic 2012 LouisianimeUltimately, we do not know everything, and never will. I thought that no one personally involved would want this to go to court, but that seems to not be the case anymore. Vic’s career is, at this moment, over… but what are my thoughts.

I was tired of hearing people talk badly about Vic for over a decade. The man is a wild card, and you can never tell with him how he’s going to act. He’s… eccentric, vain, and has always come off weird when I see him at conventions.

I just didn’t want him at conventions anymore, and I assumed that was what most people wanted. I suppose Marzgurl wanted him out of anime all together, but that’s conjecture? Is it wrong to stand up and say, “This bro’s just creepy… what with how he interacts with younger fans? Can we not have him at conventions anymore?”

I really hate the holidays.

mariolittlemacOn December 23rd, I got the alarming text message from my bank, asking if the $206.48 from Sam’s Club was authorized. I hastily, maybe too hastily, canceled my cards and contested the fee. I say cards, because some how I canceled my debit card as well.

Just go to the bank and get a temporary card, right? Capital One did not allow that on my type of card…. some how? Keep getting cash from the bank? On Christmas Eve and Christmas? New Year’s eve my bank did not have holiday hours posted, and I got there in time to see them closing. Thankfully, I got my cards that night… but there was a snag. My credit card was fine, but when I went to activate my debit card, I activated a different one than the one that was sent to me.

PicardDoubleFacepalm-1I tried to call the customer care number last night and a few minutes ago… and they will have you go through the entire shpeel only to tell you after a couple minutes that the customer care line is closed. AWESOME.

Well… so at least I have a credit card again? That’s something, I suppose.

We really need to space these holidays out.