Your browser needs less fail and more canvas. Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox support Canvas

Back downunder

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,

Long time, no post, it wasn’t that I didn’t have things to say, rather it was a case of that I couldn’t find the correct words to say them. I am finally back in Australia. I arrived back in June of last year, and I returned to Brisbane at the end of January this year. This blog has been mostly quiet for the last 5 years, though my life has been anything but quiet.

The quick summary of my life events to date, are given below:

  • Returned to Japan at the end of November 2014.
  • Began job searching in Japan.
  • Returned to Australia in order to attend my paternal grandmother’s funeral in Valentine’s Day 2015.
  • Returned to Japan 7th of March to resume job searching.
  • I found work on July 2015. It lasted until October 2016.
  • In September 2016, I purchased an image board and have been administering it along with a small team of staff ever since.
  • I resumed job searching and found work on July 2017. It lasted till April 2018.
  • I returned to Australia in June of 2018. I have spent the last 6 months resting, catching up with family and readjusting to life in Australia. (yes reverse culture shock is a thing) and began job searching in January 2019, I found work on the 1st of May.

But as they say, the devil are in the details, and all the little adventures and stories will eventually come out of the woodwork, as I once again find the words to express everything that I experience.

A summary of the recent highlights include,

  • my first ever pub crawl which happened 2 days ago and was very interesting and included air hockey, basketball, watching people falling off a mechanical bull after signing liability waivers , suspicious free strawberry creams from a pale imitation venue that attempts to caricaturize food and beverage venues I enjoyed so much in Texas. (Johnny Ringos is to Spring Creek BBQ and Dickeys Barbecue Pit as Outback Steakhouse is to the traditional family Australian BBQ or Black Hide Steakhouse or Norman Hotel (Brisbane’s worst vegetarian restaurant ®) ) , This isn’t the sort of word game you could put on an IQ test though., and discovering the remains of a secret tunnel that was used to sneak away payroll from the casino. Though to be honest, I prefer 飲み放題 to pub crawls, because you stay longer in once place so you can enjoy the ambiance and the price is fixed for drinks and you can order food as well.
  • Resuming playing badminton socially after more than 10 years of not having somewhere to play
  • my culinary skills reaching the level of weaponization , at least for a specific set of dishes (e.g. once you start eating the cooked food, you can’t stop, you want to stop but you can’t because the deliciousness overwhelms you), or in Japanese (飛び切りおいしい)
  • Replacement of my umbrella , (I have a new my umbrella, to replace the old one that I had for over 14 years). It is amazing, handmade by Moira Igra as was the experience of meeting her and seeing her factory. If you need a new umbrella, then I highly recommend her umbrellas.

I will try and post more regularly in future, and you will see more updates to the existing pages and themes and features on this site over time.

Best wishes,

Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂

Latha Bealltainn

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,


Long time, no see.




Went to Malaga Spain for work for what was supposed to be 1 week, which ended up being 2 weeks.

仕事 にマラガスペイン へ行った。1週間期間ことになっている。しかしながら 2週間期間なっている。

Hotel was fine. It was very close to the office, (which everyone else said was a bad idea, but I found it nice to be back to a short walk commute to work, like I had previously in Brisbane).  Highlight was the Spanish TV channel Boing, which had Doraemon (both series and movies) in Japanese and Code Lyoko in English  (yay for Dual Audio) .

ホテル を良い とでした。ホテル は事務所に非常に近い。ホテルの一番いい点は Code Lyoko と ドラえもん 見てい のために「Boing」テレビ局持っている た 。

Other then the 1 work dinner obligation, where I was told I couldn’t order a paella because it was for two people, and inconvenienced a colleague who said he would share, but rather who not have, (the paella was smaller than the one I had eaten in Barcelona back in 2000), the only adventure I had in Malaga was trying to get to someone’s house for a BBQ on foot with all my luggage , which was just me walking in a large circle like shape in the heat around Maqueda, asking for directions and having everyone draw blanks, although the most helpful was an old man, who was able to speak to me in French, when I couldn’t understand his description in Spanish, and drew me a picture.

私は Malaga に2冒険を持っていた。第一,同僚と私はよく、仕事の後、夕食に出かけます。共用の 食事の場合に限り ,パエリヤを注文するできる。前者理性ので同僚はと食事をする。極小のパエリヤ!!! 🙁 。第二に,手荷物を運んで徒歩で職場の同僚BBQ に赴くを試みるつもりでした。炎天下でMaquedaにグルグル歩き回るた。道を尋ねようとしていた。どの経路 は誰も知らない。老翁 は単純な指示を与えるで一番役に立つ 。まず彼は、スペイン語を話した。わかりません。次に彼はフランス語を話した。わかりました。それから彼は、地図を描いた。

2.5 hours of walking later, I returned to where I set off from, and attempted to have a taxi take me to the address in Google Maps I had been given, he took me to the top of the street which was over 5 km away from where I needed to be, so I then just told the Taxi to take me to the airport, where I killed time for at least 5 hours. The most enjoyable part of killing that time was meeting a couple from UK that have a house in Spain, and the woman worked in social services, and her partner was a criminology professor. They were both very happy to talk about their work and their children which was nice.

徒歩で数時間後にホテル に 帰る 。タクシーで職場の同僚BBQ に赴くを試みるつもりでした。しかし、ドライバーはアドレスが不完全であったと述べた。空港に代わりにいく。私は、空港さの中で5時間待ちました。UKから夫婦に会った。らはスペインに家を持っていた。彼は犯罪学の教授であった、彼女は社会サービスワーカーだった。彼らは、自分の仕事や子供の話して幸せだった。

Trip back was via Dublin, and the 12 hour layover in the airport was fun , and long  enough to be annoying, but ultimately too short to do anything other than take advantage of free WiFi and not sleep, until I had to fuss, because I had been mislead about my requirements for boarding based on Dublin being a US Customs Clearance area. Yay for scrambling to buy another ticket from my own pocket at the last minute (not!!!).

Dublin によって往復旅行 。Dublin 空港での12時間の乗り継ぎ時間楽しかった。不愉快に思うするだけの時間しか滞在しない。時間は短すぎる だから何もしたくない除いてインターネットをブラウズすで夜通し起きている。難局まで 。 上司は搭乗手続き条件の件で私を欺く。いよいよという時にチケット購入 。やったない

Luckily with a receipt for a ticket leaving the US, I was able to board the plane to the US. As it turned out my account didn’t have enough money for that ticket , so American airlines cancelled it after I had arrived in the US,  and despite my attempts to call them. I called US number, they said they couldn’t take my Australian debit card, despite their website taking it earlier, and to call Australian American Airlines office, which I did, but I couldn’t afford the cost of international dialing being on hour for more 25 minutes twice. In the end I ended up organising another flight returning to Japan, which had been the plan all along.

幸いにも, 航空券の領収書だから 飛行機に乗ったことができました。アメリカに着いたとき、資金不足のために取り消された帰りの切符。結局,日本に帰りの切符を買った。最初の計画にこだわる。

Arrived back in Japan in October, and was very happy to be back. Finally ate non kombini sushi in Japan, because I was hosting a work colleague that wanted to eat it.   Caught up with Tim and Sarcha when they were visiting for IROS 2013 (Tim was presenting a paper), which was wonderful and I must catch up with them again.

十月に日本に戻った。私は本当に幸せでした。私の職場の同僚の飲食の欲求だからやっとコンビニな寿司じゃないを食べてする機会に恵まれる。Tim とSarcha と近況を話し合う。Tim はロボット工学に関する論文をIROSの大会で発表すた。Tim とSarchaと一緒に楽しく過ごす。再びあの夫婦と近況を話し合なくちゃ。

Flew to Australia almost 1 month later for Christmas holidays with family and to attend my cousins wedding (after giving notice, and taking offer to return to US in the new year).

ほぼ1カ月後,クリスマス家族と共に過ごすと従姉の結婚式に参加するだからオーストラリアに飛行機で行く 。(辞表を出して,新年に米の遠距離通信会社からの仕事を引き受ける)

Had my birthday and Christmas with family and my mom’s family. Cousins wedding was amazing. Birthday highlights were the game of Mao (so much laughter) and the frozen ice-cream berry cake that I made for myself.

私の誕生日とクリスマス家族と母方と共に過ごす。いとこの結婚式素晴らしいた。冷凍のベリーのアイスクリームのケーキの自製 にとマオ(トランプゲーム) は誕生日のハイライト。

Currently located in US for work.

仕事のために 私は現在位置 アメリカ合衆国。

Ordered futon online with Rakuten, it was a great success. Was cheaper than just trying to buy a futon here even with the shipping.

楽天で布団オンライン注文する。 大成功を収める。輸送費にもかかわらず 手頃な価格。

Finally have internet at new apartment.

ついにをインターネット  持っている新しいアパート。

Same / similar job, different title and hiring organisation.

仕事同じこと 。相違する会社の請負業者。

Have a glass jar with quarters in it for laundry.

洗濯物 のためにガラスの瓶  の中には 硬貨 持っている。

Best wishes,


Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂

Everything is bigger in Texas

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,

Long time no update, very busy with work, lots of changes and other nonsense going on. My unpublished draft from April will eventually be published, unless I forget its contents in which case it will be dropped.

In Dallas for a few weeks for work. First time in the USA, very interesting experience so far.

Positive Highlights

  • Limousine bus to Narita Airport (Baggage Attendant reported to me in English that my luggage was a structural weakness. I said I already know, and thank you very much, he also tagged it fragile and marked it as damaged though it wasn’t actually broken any more from the bus trip then its original damage., He also noted that the handle on the side didn’t work (把手 注 意 )
  • Narita Airport (Money exchange, waiting in Narita airport, Customs & Immigration, Shopping Centre and Last meal in Japan (Miso Ramen and Melon Ice Cream Soda for 1390 Yen, best way to use all my coins at Airport ever) (People that know me know I like airports)
  •  Walking 4 miles round trip to Radioshack. Apparently nobody walks in Texas, well I guess I do.
  • DART (Dallas Area Rapid Transport), This was awesome whilst I was in Spring Valley Richardson, $5 day pass got me to and from work.
  • Waffle House (I had breakfast / dinner between 12am and 1am after doing laundry), and the service was wonderful and the food was delicious. (Both the hashbrown all the way, which was like Okonomiyaki, and the waffle and the Angus hamburgers). The waitresses were polite and full of banter, and the a special shout out goes out to Amos (The senior grill operator) , who in my opinion was like the Mr T of that Waffle House. He had everything sorted, Grill operations, correcting the waitresses on customer orders, how to use the waffle machines without the waffles sticking, etc, etc. The junior grill operator is apparently going to college to study game design, so I gave him so advice based on my experience graduating from tertiary education will several hundred students of computer game design, that never got to make it big in industry.
  • I got to see a Squirrel on Memorial Day. I have some photos.
  • I got to see a baby Rabbit / bunny on the way to work. I have some photos. (To understand the significance of the  above two points, see Белочка (Belochka)  )
  • Ben & Jerrys Icecream in Minneapolis airport. Blueberry frozen yoghurt, Blueberry sorbet with extra blueberries. It wasn’t as big as I expected
  • Getting to meet Jerry and Kevin (who I worked remote nightshift with) in person. They are both amazing and hardworking people, going to Lunch with them at Chuey’s a TexMex restaurant was a wonderful experience.
  • Going to Denny’s for Breakfast with Kevin and meeting some elderly gentleman one of was a Korea – Vietnam veteran. Blueberry pancakes were delicious and the conversation about science fiction movies and miltary realism in military books and movies was very interesting. I was recommended Semper Fi, and I recommended Monash.
  • Buying half gallon tub of Strawberry Icecream from the local  CVS pharmacy, interesting that both CVS in US and Fitcare in Japan have pharmacies that sell icecream. Australia doesn’t seem to have this yet.
  • Free Wifi in hotels.
  • The guy that appreciated my air piano in Minneapolis airport, it is nice to have someone appreciate your craft when others are just giving you strange looks.

Negative Highlights

  • Delayed in Minneapolis Immigration, just because I was second last in line, and had 2 if not 3 queue jumpers in front me. Also the immigration officer seemed upset like he was missing his children’s birthday or something. My immigration only took 4 minutes to process.  
  • Missed connecting flight to immigration delay. (Yay for extra layover and running / rushing through airports and airport security, Tim F in the Delta booth was really awesome with booking my connecting flight, but the Delta Agent he instructed me to ask my bags about Yin L must have been having a really bad day, because she just got angry and me and told me what others had told me which is my bags would be in Dallas, which they weren’t)
  • Delta also lost my checked luggage. (I got it back 16 hours later after arrived 3 hours later in Dallas (Yay for being up for 35 hours straight). When I got my luggage back the resting stub on the base was missing (only 3 now instead of 4) and the handle was snapped with a nail protruding
  • Radioshack saying that they don’t sell the prepaid SIM card I was recommended to buy, when they clearly do and their website already says so.
  • Tom of Maine’s toothpaste now contains SLS, so I couldn’t buy it.

Pictures from Gallery

Pictures will be upload from the two phones and have and linked later.

Uploaded Texas food and some wildlife in Food and Animal galleries

See example food link below


Best wishes,

Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂


Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,


Long time, no update, mainly because I couldn’t find the correct words to express the emotions and circumstances.


All the while I re-realise what I first learnt at Uber Tweak so many years ago.
If I don’t write then eventually I won’t be able to contain myself in the realms of my mind alone.


Today is the public holiday Coming of Age Day (成人の日).

Also it is currently snowing in Tokyo, Yokohama and Shinyokohama. This is a big surprise as I didn’t expect to see snow.

See pictures below.


See poor quality video here  (taken from phone, will convert from 3gp to HTML5 at a latter point, watch using vlc or mplayer currently)


Work is still quite busy.


Milestones to date (一里塚):

  •  First Birthday away from family (離れて家族からの初めての誕生日)
  •  First Christmas away from family (離れて家族から最初のクリスマス)
  •  First New years away from family (離れて家族から最初の正月)

Achievements since previous post (because I tend to focus on the stuff I don’t manage to do) (これまでの成果):

  • Acquired hanko (adventure at Hanko store, went well, though it funny the proprietor tried to make small talk regarding my hometown as he had his honeymoon there) (判子 取得すった )
  • Acquired bank account (one rejection (I was not turtley enough for the turtle club) and another application later, found it funny that phone number is required to apply for bank account here.) (銀行預金口座 取得すった )
  • Submitted tax return on time (trip to post office, one of several, but the first to use prioritized mail) (時間通りに提出され、税務申告)
  • Immunized against Hep B (took a different route to get there the second time, which was much shorter and easier,
  • other anecdotes about the nearby cemetery, and the behaviour of children in doctor’s waiting rooms ,which doesn’t seem to change, regardless of where you are)  (B型肝炎について免疫)
  • Attended Tokyo Christmas Reddit Meetup (Yaki-niku, and pitcher of pineapple soda was delicious, the ridiculous walking around in circles in various attempts to carol Shibuya whilst only knowing choruses, not so much, though the Christmas costume stores seemed to appreciate our efforts to increase their business), on my train trip to Shibuya, I was on a special golden train, lots of spectators were taking pictures of it, I still don’t know why.) (「東京 reddit」 のクリスマスパーティー に 出席 於 渋谷)
  • Another trip to Devilcraft for a coworker’s birthday celebration. (More deep dish pizza, craft beer for everyone else, and more pineapple juice for me) (関内でDevilCraftで誕生日パーティーに出席)
  •  Have learnt Hiragana (平仮名) and Katakana (カタカナ), still practicing on recall when reading however.

Technology wise:

NAS fan died, then NAS died. (NASが死んだ)
Not sure of the status of 3 HDDs I have which all don’t work in my external caddy (various symphonies of clicking and beeping),
but they may work when plugged into an actual power supply, so I will try that before deposing of them.
One of them contains most of my TV , Games and some of my anime archive, so I hope it is not dead. (HDDはうんざりしている)

I will need to get a new NAS + router. (私は新しいNAS+ルータを取得する必要があります)
Ideally it will be hackable, running Linux, have 4 gigabit Ethernet ports, WiFi, either have drive support or multiple USB ports,
ESATA would be nice as well. Short list of possible candidates never eventuated.

EEEPC laptop isn’t dead yet, though HDD is in bad state, screen is damaged and AC adapter barely works.  (EEEPC はうんざりしている)
Lenovo laptop is going well, though there are still configuration things I would like to improve,

  •  some of the UIM, Scim behaviour
  • webcam support for Skype comes and goes with Kernel version
  • Various custom ebuilds I made earlier, that I have to find and install
  • Sorting of home directory contents

Learning wise I have been mainly watching various 29c3 videos (Tamagotchi Presentation, along with Hacker Jeopardy were my highlights),
the occasional video, and one or two C++ channel9 videos.

In terms of what I did for my time off.

I didn’t do much mainly study Japanese, and watch the anime Gintama.

I really like the intertextuality. The humour was also supportive.

Apologies in advance if the translations don’t contain the banter of my native tongue, banter seems difficult to translate in a way where not only the meaning is isomorphic but also the expression and emotivity. I will also have to continue translating this post & updating this post.

Hopefully I manage to slowly revive some dormant side projects.

I hope everyone’s new year is interesting.

Best wishes,

Benjamin Southall




Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,


This post was going to be finished earlier and cover more than just my culinary adventures, however I figure I may as well just finish this post and dedicate it to them.

Note: The Japanese translation of rest of the post will take me sometime, but should eventually appear. Update: Translation is done is except for most of the banter, it only took me a few years to find the time (about 3 hours total)

Baking is Science for Hungry People. (ベーキングは、飢えた人々のための科学である)

What you need (ことが必要とされる)

  • 1 Rice Cooker (mine is a Toshiba RC-10NMF), preferably with a Bake Mode / Setting, though the original cake / pudding was made just by reusing cook and quick cook repeatedly. Having found an English manual for my model was a great help, although Bake Mode was not clearly documented. If you do not have a rice cooker you could probably use an oven and could possibly even use a microwave oven, though I do not know the settings for microwave cooking) . (1 炊飯器 )
  • Pancake or Hot Cake Mix , you can get this at any grocery store. Japanese Pancake Mix requires Milk and an egg, so it is like White Wings packet pancake mix in that way, and unlike Shake and Bake Pancake Mix (Greens, White Wings Bottle, etc) which are just add water. You normally get 4 sachets of 150g or 3 sachets of 200g.  Further experimentation identifies you can exclude the milk and use water and still make pancakes. (ホットケーキミックス)
  • 2 eggs (preferably chicken) (卵2個 )
  • 300 to 320ml of Milk (preferably cow)  (300-320ml 牛乳)
  • Arbitrary amount of Blueberry Jam (200g works alright, just use your common sense here, or in the case of the people that lack common sense and  realise that with too little Blueberry Jam, your cake is just a dry sponge cake and with too much Blueberry Jam your rice cooker will beep uncontrollably before the pressure opens the lid and an eruption of sticky blueberry goo / cake mix covers the surrounding area) (いくつかのブルーベリージャム)
  • You could also use fresh blueberries and replace the jam component with maple syrup or honey, though I have not located a source for fresh blueberries yet. My previous source of Organic Frozen blueberries at less than $20 a kg is now no longer an option.
  • A mixing bowl of some sort (I used an empty 2 litre ice cream container) (ミキシングボウル)
  • A mixing device of some sort (I used a normal  (non Australian) tablespoon, which looker like a dessert spoon to me, as apparently Australia uses a tablespoon that is 4 teaspoons instead of 3, and I have only used one real 20ml tablespoon before(yay for childhood memories), the rest of the spoons I have used appear to be 15ml tablespoons, that will always be dessert spoons to me, because they are what I eat cake and icecream with, where as tablespoons are what I mix cakes with and measure ingredients with, unless I have a measuring cup or jug and a wooden spoon or a whisk. For further etymology on the spoon distinction see here. (混合スプーン)
  • A towel or oven mitts for dealing with a hot bowl component of the rice cooker. Yes I used a beach towel, I am yet to acquire oven mitts and paper towels are insufficient in terms of heat mitigation for your hands. (タオル かそれとも オーブンミトン)
  • A plate or dish or cooling rack to place your cake on. (皿 かそれとも冷却ラック)
  • 1 pair of scissors to open plastic, Yes I know people can just tear it or use their teeth, but scissors lead to more mix in the bowl and less on the floor. (プラスチックを開くためのはさみ)
  • 1 bin for putting rubbish (at the very minimum broken egg shells in) (ごみ箱)
  • 1 refrigeration device (just in case you are unable to devour the entire cake in one sitting) (冷蔵庫)
  • 1 fork or skewer for testing cake readiness. (フォーク かそれとも 串)
  • 1 kitchen sink with running water for washing stuff up. (台所の流し)
  • Electricity (the rice cooker needs power to work) (電気)
  • 1-2 hours of patience, INSTANT CAKES ARE LIES.  (忍耐)

Instructions  (説明書)

  1.  Acquire all the things in the what you need section, please attempt to do so legally and without inconveniencing anyone, I know cake is delicious but jail time for cake just isn’t worth it. (必要ものをすべて手に入れる)
  2. Open the pancake mix sachets with scissors cutting off a triangular corner of the plastic. (ホットケーキミックスを開くためにハサミを使用して)
  3. Pour the pancake mix into the mixing bowl. (ミキシングボウル中へ混合物注ぐ)
  4. Gently shake the sachets , oscillating in order to wiggle any of the remaining mix into the bowl. (ホットケーキミックスが ミキシングボウル中へ優しく振る)
  5. Gently shake the bowl, till the mix is somewhat level, e.g. looks like a car park rather than the moon. (ミキシングボウルが 優しく振る 混合物が平  まで )
  6. Add your jam or jam replacement now. Do so either just with gravity using pouring or recruit your spoon for support in this endeavor. Yes I know this goes against the vast majority of cake recipes in existence, which always say to put the egg and milk in first. (ミキシングボウルにジャムを置く)
  7. Now crack open your eggs, and pour the contents of the egg (without any shell) into the mixing bowl. Do not lump the eggs together. (ミキシングボウルに卵を割り入れる。各卵が別々であることを確認してください。)
  8. Slowly pour in the Milk to the mixing bowl, ideally it areas where the jam or eggs are not, you want as much direct contact between the milk and mix as possible. (ミキシングボウルにホットケーキミックス中へミルクゆっくり注ぐ)
  9. If I was a recipe book writer, then next step would be Combine well, which is meaningful until you realise that you do not know what well means.
    • First slowly stir the mixture combining the flour and the jam, for about 45 seconds. (混合物が45秒まで 低速でかくはんするが空気が入らないように注意する。小麦粉、ジャムを組み合わせる)
    • Then stab the egg yolks and slowly stir into the mixture for about 45 seconds. (次に卵黄を刺す。混合物が45秒まで 低速でかくはんするが空気が入らないように注意する)
    • Then slowly stir the remaining milky parts of the mixture for another 45 seconds. (混合物の乳白色の部分が45秒まで 低速でかくはんするが空気が入らないように注意する)
    • Then quickly stir the mixture as it is for about 2 minutes, first clockwise, then anticlockwise, alternating every 15 seconds or so. (混合物が2分まで 高速でかくはんするが空気が入らないように注意する。時計回りにかき混ぜ、その後 反時計回り。15秒ごとに交互に)
    • Now eliminate as many pockets of dry mix or lumps of blueberry jam as you can by mashing them against the side or bottom of the mixing bowl. (塊がなくなるまで混合されていない成分をつぶす)
    • Then spend another minute quickly stirring (clockwise, anticlockwise) the mixture. . (混合物が1 分まで 高速でかくはんするが空気が入らないように注意する。時計回りにかき混ぜ、その後 反時計回り。15秒ごとに交互に)
    • Now spend 1 minute attempting to fold air into the mixture, you want as many bubbles as you can get, you do this by rowing the spoon through the mixing bowling quite rapidly. (よく混ざり1分まで高速でかくはん 。混合物に空気を折り畳む)
    • Now spend 30 seconds stirring figure 8s or Z for Zorros or whatever other shape moniker takes your fancy in the mixing bowl. (30秒までボウルに図形を描画するためにスプーンを使用して。)
  10. Now take your rice cooker bowl component out of the rice cooker, and pour the mixture from the mixing bowl into the rice cooker bowl.(炊飯器からボウルを取り出します。混合物を炊飯器ボウルへ移行する)
  11. Replace the rice cooker bowl now complete with mixture into the rice cooker, and ensure it is seated correctly. (炊飯器でボウルを交換)
  12. Close the lid of the rice cooker.( 炊飯器の蓋を閉める)
  13. Enable Bake / Baking Mode ( For my rice cooker it was Pressing the Menu (メニュー) Button twice.) (ベーキングモードにする)
  14. Now set the time for 60 minutes using the Minute (分) Button to increase the time. (タイマーをセットしてね60分間)
  15. Finally press the Cook Button (one on the right with red circle, with スタート in small letters) (ついにクックボタンを押して)
  16. Wait 60 minutes, preferably doing something else like watching TV, browsing the Internet or reading (60分待って)
  17. Open rice cooker lid, test how done the cake is with either fork or skewer. If wet mixture on the fork, then repeat steps 12 -16, with cooking time set to 30 minutes, otherwise proceed to step 18. (火が通っているかチェックするフォークを使用して。フォークが濡れている場合は、ステップ 12 から ステップ 16まで を順を追って繰り返す。しかし、30分の調理時間のみ使用する)
  18. Your cake is cooked. Prepare plate or cooling rack for cake to sit on. Then use oven mitts or towel to remove hot rice cooker bowl from rice cooker and place upside down on plate (the opening on the bowl should be facing the surface of the plate). Using towel gently lift the bowl and watch as cake is now on the plate by the magic of gravity. (ケーキは調理され。炊飯器ボウルの中身を平皿へ移行する)
  19. Cleanup everything you used, by washing it up in sink or placing it in bin. Do not place the cake in bin, if you want to place the cake somewhere either place it on bench top or in refrigeration unit. (後片付けぜんぶ。ケーキを破棄しないでください)
  20. Cake is ready to eat. Enjoy. (食べられる状態になってケーキ。いただきます)

Note: Changing the amount of cooking time and the amount of jam changes the consistency and texture of the resulting dessert between pudding and cake. Use this wisely. ( 望ましい稠度 のデザートは加熱時間によって異なると量のジャム 。あなたはプリンやケーキをしたいですか?)

Pictures of final products:  (写真)

Self Sauced Pudding version (プリン)


Cake Version (ケーキ)


Best wishes


Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂


海の日 & 秋葉原電気街 よく混ぜる

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,


Work is still quite busy.

Last weekend I visited Akihabara Electronic Town, looking to find a replacement laptop.
I wasn’t able to find one I wanted and was told to look online.
I couldn’t find a replacement fan for my NAS. I will need to try again another day.

I went to Ueno and played Marco Polo.

Ueno Park is very scenic and Ueno Station has a lot of entrances. Apparently the zoo was closed.

I found the people I met. We went to the “Hub”.
It was like a British pub-style bar.

The next day was a public holiday, called Marine Day. I didn’t do anything special.

What is everyone else upto ?

Best wishes


Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂



七転び八起き , Oh when the saints go ….

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,

こんにちは みんな

I am in an apartment now.

Work is very busy.


You never realise how many simple things you just get used to until they all change.


I appreciate my home cooking so much more now.


Laptop hard drive has bad blocks, but managed to backup all important data after eventually buying the correct power adapter from Yodabashi Camera, after trying Don Quitote, PC Depot and BIC Camera.

ラップトップのハードドライブが不良ブロックを持っている. ヨドバシカメラから正しい電源アダプタを購入しました。次に、データの回復が可能であった。

Best wishes,


Benjamin Southall aka Appelman1234 🙂


日本 初心者 and other news

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone .

こんにちは みんな。

Have arrived at a new country and employer.


SIM Card doesn’t work here as it is 2G.


Missed last direct bus from Narita. But managed to arrive safe and late anyways. Didn’t realise I could have had discounted bus fare due to youth until I was on the bus.



First week at work was busy but fun. Lots of new faces, new systems and new processes. 職場での最初の週は忙しいけど楽しかったです。多くの新しい顔、新しいシステム、新しいプロセス。


Power  adapter for laptop is sick. Will eventually buy a new laptop. Discovered 価格.com , which makes up for not being  able to use umart any more.

ノートパソコン用の電源アダプタが壊れている. 発見された  価格.com , これはumart に適した代替手段です。

Passmo and Suica cards , already are better than the go card I left behind. Washlet is also better than normal toilet. PassmoとSuicaカードは、Goカードよりも優れている。  Toto Washlet は、通常のトイレよりも優れています。


Train Network and Subway are amazing. Ikea was fun as well. Couldn’t find any cheesecake and made the same mistake  as when in Logan regarding not remembering that bed linen is on the ground floor.

鉄道網 すごい, 地下鉄網 すごい。 IKEAは楽しかったです。チーズケーキを見つけられませんでした。 忘れていたベッドリネンは地上階にあった。Logan IKEAと同じ。

As for everyone asking how I am, I am fine. As for everyone expecting correspondence, it is coming. I am still writing  or typing it up, and then I have to go and learn the wonders of the Japanese Postal  Service.

私は元気です。 郵便はまだ書かれていません。次に私は、日本郵政公社について学ぶ必要があります。


I am still learning Japanese and probably will  be for at least a year if not the  remainder of my life, any corrections or improvements to my Japanese are welcomed, as is any advice or questions.

私はまだ日本語を勉強しています。 それはおそらく一生かかるでしょう。私の日本語に対するすべての修正は歓迎されています。質問も大歓迎です。


Best wishes,


Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂




Early bird gets the matyrdom, spaghetti,causality

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,

Been very busy. Doors closing and windows opening.

Employer and physical location have changed. I had such a wonderful experience giving my own goodbye speech. Thanks to everyone at Emerchants that made working there so fuffilling and fun.

Have enjoyed saying good bye to several people in Australia, including a wonderful fish dinner complete with discussion regarding children conditioning their parents with verbal triggers, the nature and definition of live and living. (See announcement of synthetic life here and the line between life and non file here by Martin Hanczyc, also  see Theo Jansen’s Synthetic Creatures here , also see the Chinese Room Thought Experiment).

For most of the information from the life and living discussion see the Wikipedia article on Life .

Other highlights included a wonderful meal at Giardinetto’s, and walking to Red Hill and back again in the rain armed with only an umbrella. Walking makes you appreciate the weather, and distance and the nature beauty of your surroundings. Other methods of transports are certain more efficient and get you further with less effort, but ensure your journey is a different one entirely, even if the location is the same.

My earlier trip out to Fernvale and the relevant bbirthday celebrations of my great aunt and her amazing friend was magnificent, though the conversation was a little too political for my taste. The scones and the company was divine though.

Other recent fun experiences include two vaccinations and one blood test with band-aid that didn’t stick. Blood is no match for a microfibre shirt (didn’t even need bleach), and got to tell everyone that I was mauled by a bear.

Vaccination also make you appreciate life at the cellular level, which at first glance in the world around you doesn’t appear to be noticeable unless you are born with microscopic supervision or something similar.

As Nick said to me earlier, you don’t realise how much stuff you have until you are moving house. Apparently his move went very well, which is good. I also enjoyed a Reddit Board Games meetup.

I was able to play Munchkin, Scrabble, Cranium & Mao, and spectate Game of Thrones (I haven’t watched the television show yet, but if it is like the board game, then I can understand the attraction) .

Highlights of the Cranium game, included the failed guessing of Al Pacino from Scar Face (based on my team mate’s wonderful rendention, and my total mental blank), the failed guessing of a Whole New World from Aladdin after I whistled and hummed my heart out, and the failed guessing of the event the Baby Boom , when the best I could render from my partner’s actions was the hilarious but not quite correct “PREGNANCY EXPLOSION!!!”. It was a pleasure to meet Jesta Mctogaboy and his partner, I hope her online Mafia game goes well.

I also met an interesting character on the train on the way to the Board Games Meetup, and another different interesting character on the way home.

Other game playing that occurred whilst saying good bye, included a spectacular set of games of Mexican Train Dominios , though we seemed to be playing without the namesake train, never the less it was a very fun night, hearing about my great uncle’s bowling championship win, seeing his thriving vegetable garden and of course his wonderful trips to Los Vegas.

In terms of technology. I have been researching laptops, but haven’t replaced my EEEPC 1000h yet, stuff at work before it finished was mainly just a mini adventure in consumption of WCF webservices using WSDL rather than MEX, and having to flatten the WSDL to remove imports that had location uris using internal IP addresses, and then explicitly override the base address of the site. Thanks SSW .NET Ninjas Brisbane Branch for all the fun.

Other work stuff was mostly generating written and verbal handover documentation.

I haven’t managed to define Life generally yet , let alone my current life, but Life seems to be defined by the actions one takes, the choices one makes and journey along the way.

What does Life to mean to you ?
Best wishes,

Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂


Sweet dreams are made of sugar ?

Posted on by Benjamin Southall

Click to view

Hi everyone,

New things :

  •  Fixed second hole in umbrella
  •  Darned hole in pants (Cloth hacking FTW)
  •  Plenty of apricot nectar
  •  More Icecream and Blueberries
  •  Pineapple Juice
  •  New Icecream Scoop
  •  Got book I loaned back
  •  Got new working headphones
  • SSL update broke AMSN (still looking for fix)

Found someone’s special lost magazines and books.

Rescued someone that was lost.

Had 4 litres of Mountain Dew recently.

Work keeping me busy.

Was delayed by random stranger that referred to Australia’s heart as dead and didn’t appreciate subjective aestheticism.

Caught up with several colleagues from who I met at university. This was good. We talked about animals in pet shops, adoption, Advanced Microsoft Word,  the joys of working in software development, 90s ABC Television shows, the definition of trauma in the context of various forms of media, the nature of cliques and social dynamics and numerous other things.

Had serendipitous / funny moment when phone had no battery, and I was eating dinner at restaurant across the road from people trying to call me to invite me to dinner at that restaurant on the other side of the road. I had walked past the restaurant they were in several times and they didn’t notice me.

Wondering what the correlation between blood sugar level and type of dream someone has is ?

What are you dreaming of ?

Best wishes,

Benjamin Southall aka Appleman1234 🙂