“The one with the final post.”

…That was the original working title for this post when I began writing it yesterday as VOX allowed me access for a short while last night but something that Paul Thomas wrote to me today in an e-mail has changed my mind so perhaps a move to a new site is in question. It's now Thursday and 3:37 p.m. and I've just been able to access VOX again but I'm not sure for how long so I'll try finishing this first…. Zush also mentioned a suggested new site host but I'm not sure if I can impose that way on someone…after all it's just me and this little blog. 😛

It's now 5:12 p.m. on Wednesday and I've been trying to access this site since about noon today. In case anyone's wondering no I haven't fallen off of the edge of the earth just yet but since Sunday this very moment marks just the second time that I've been able to access VOX. And I mean all VOX related sites not just this one as my browser just keeps freezing up on…."transferring data from aka-static.vox.com" seemingly endlessy as I've left it there for a few hours once to see if anything would ever load which just didn't happen. I've already tried clearing out my browser's memory and I also tried out Opera which interestingly can access VOX sites but it doesn't display every thing on the page and it doesn't allow me to compose any posts so that's out too. And IE is even worse. But you see it's just VOX as Firefox can access any other site that I direct it to just as long as it's not VOX related. I'm going to try to write every thing in this one post because I don't know if and when I'll be able to access this site again after I close this page.

I apologize so much for not being able to respond to recent comments and private messages as I just can't get into them as well. I am able to read comments on my Blackberry but I'm unable to respond directly to a particular person so I don't think that's very useful either. There's just so many issues that keep coming up and I think this is the one straw that finally breaks the camel's back so to speak. I'm just really tired….not being able to upload photos directly to VOX, I can deal with that……having to restart my laptop each and every time that I upload a music file to VOX, I can deal with that….but not being able to even access this site on a normal basis, I think that's asking for too much.

Last night when I was mysteriously finally able to access this site which was the first time since Saturday night I started to write a post but after about 2 hours of writing either VOX, Firefox, Vista or a combination of them decided to eat my post as it just froze up and I was unable to save or recover any of it besides the title as all of the text and photos were gone. Firefox does this thing where it tries to restore your last session but even that function was unable to recover the post. It wouldn't be so bad if I could say that my dog ate my post but I don't own a dog. 😛

I do fully intend to finish the "Berikyuu! Idol" voting over the next few weeks but without regular access to VOX unless some miracle occurs sometime soon, I intend to post it elsewhere and possibly ask Paul at Hello!Blog to link it for me if he would. I actually e-mailed him a short while ago asking if he could post a little comment here saying that I was unable to access VOX (edit: he's already posted the comment for me!) but just now it finally let me in but I fully expect that after I close this browser it won't work again for a long time as has been the trend. VOX recently underwent a server change and I don't know if that has anything to to with this accessibility issue but I don't imagine that being the case as I'm seemingly the only one who's unable to access VOX as far as I know.

And I apologize again that I most likely wont be able to reply to anyone through VOX  although I will be able to read them on my Blackberry. It's really like being muzzled. :O So anyway here's what I was writing last night until the three-headed monster VOX/Firefox/Vista ate it……….I wish I could remember everything that I wrote…as it's so frustrating trying to re-write something that you've already written…..

…It's amazing how time flies and an idol that I sort of "grew" up with in the sense that she regularly graced the idol magazines that I began collecting early on in my road to idol obsession, Matsumoto Rio is already 25! My subscription to UTB began in late '95 and you may have noticed that on the cover of UTB above from September '97 her name is written as Matsumoto "Megumi" which is an earlier "stage" name that she went by prior to a hiatus from the entertainment industry which then saw her return with "Rio" in place of Megumi. I remember when I first saw her going under the name Matsumoto Rio….and I was thinking that she was possibly "Megumi's" sister because they "looked" so much alike! 😛 Then shortly thereafter I learned that it was her! And speaking of UTB, the idol publication that I've loved so much over the years, it's gone through a change of sorts with its latest issue and I think the jury is still out on whether those changes are for the better. Since late '95 I've watched this publication go through 3 significant changes in terms of magazine layout and features which have involved the actual size of the magazine, it's features, paper type, as well as extras. From trading cards, pull out posters, clear files, DVDs, etc., UTB has offered a fair share of fan enticing extras but with the new format all of that seems to have gone away unfortunately although I'm still hopeful that this one issue is just a one time special edition and while it does include a very impressive array of idols, each individual article is quite limited. Also all of the special feature articles are absent from this issue and that's possibly the most worrisome change overall. In the past UTB used to even have a section dedicated to J-Pop new releases and it's really sad that that feature has also disappeared over time. I'm really anticipating the next issue as I think a lot of questions on the magazine's "new" format will be answered and ironically I'm hoping for a return to something a bit more similar to one of its previous formats.

Matsumoto Megumi….haha I keep wanting to type that…I mean Rio has grown from a successful idol and become quite an accomplished actress whose resume is very impressive as it includes numerous t.v. dramas and movies which she has appeared in over the past 10 years. And like so many other idols, Rio also ventured into the music industry albeit a very very brief venture at that as she released just one single release.

Admittedly I've purchased my fair share of one shot idol music releases where things just didn't pan out as hoped but in numerous cases perhaps some idol's vocals just weren't suited for the endeavor…however that's exactly where Matsumoto Rio differs. I had previously heard her speak in dramas and I never imagined that she'd have such a great singing voice but this really can be the case with so many other vocalists as well. Matsumoto Rio's vocals projects a deepness with both strength and character and her ability to hit a subtle falsetto adds a beautiful and memorable touch to her release "Seraphito no komori uta." And although this release is about 4 years old it holds no characteristics in style, arrangement or genre which the passing of time can otherwise tarnish.

And with the powerhouse musical home Avex behind her this release didn't skimp on any of its attention to presentation or extras as all of the outer pages of the booklet as well as the front and back covers are all presented on beautiful glossy thick stock paper along with the inclusion of a DVD containing the pv for the title track "Seraphita no komori uta" along with two t.v. CM spots (AVCD-30622/B edition). This release is also available without the extra DVD.

To further point out the elegance of this release, when both discs are removed they reveal an absolutely beautiful gate fold photo of Rio which is spread across both the front and back inner jackets.

I tried to scan them together here…I just love this photo of her so much! ^-^

Three songs and a total of six tracks are included with this release: "Seraphita no komori uta", "Sweet Season", "Make me smile", "Seraphita no komori uta" (piano version), "Seraphita no komori uta" (Instrumental), and "Make me smile" (Instrumental). Here I've uploaded the pv for the title track:

Matsumoto Rio "Seraphito no komori uta" pv

The songwriting is nothing short of excellent and with Rio's strong performance it leads me to speculate that perhaps she opted for a career centered on acting and fashion design rather than music as with a debut this impressive it's difficult to imagine any other reason for her abandoning the music industry altogether after just a single release with such strong backing and support.

Here are tracks 2 and 3 from her single:

02 Sweet Season
Matsumoto Rio

I can't stress enough how beautiful I feel the production is for this release as Matsumoto Rio is the picturesque vision of pure elegance throughout all of its included photos.

Here's a little trip down memory lane from about 11 to 13 years ago and isn't she absolutely adorable in these photos! I've always thought that her best facial feature is her beautiful large almond shaped eyes! And this may sound a bit strange but I also loved her eyebrows too when she was younger! 😛

These two snapshot collage pages show her fun playful side! So cute!

In the event that I do restart blogging elsewhere if VOX continues to deny me access here on a regular basis the one thing that I would like to add immediately would be Blogpatrol's widget which you can find on the lower right side of this page above the koi fish pond. Please feed the fish they always seem to be hungry! 😛 I first saw this widget on Henkka's VOX blog and decided to give it a try back on March 8th and the information that this site acquires for you is really amazing! Every thing from top ten pages visited during a week, last ten pages visited, top ten referrers to your site for the week, the last ten referrers for the week, web browsers used to view your site broken down into a percentage pie chart, operating systems in use to access your site also by percentage pie chart, screen resolutions used to view your site, and a constantly updated analysis of the last 25 visitors to visit your site is also included and it even displays which posts, photos, etc, were viewed and for how long a duration of time which is pretty amazing data…well at least to me as I'm kind of a simpleton! 😛

I really wish that I had known about these types of widgets when I first began here on VOX as the information would be that much more interesting and complete….Hmmm…..Hennka why didn't you join VOX sooner! 😛 With Bloggerpatrol installed since March 8th, 2008 it's been about 2 months and a week of data collected on visitors to this site and at this moment the visitor count is 23,112 with a total of 53,196 hits and roughly it's a little over 10,000 visitors per month in well these past two months. Interestingly a large portion of these hits occur on much older posts here and it always surprises me when it's actually a photo that links visitors here. A lot of my older posts have really awful resolution regarding photos so I'm really sorry about that but I was so limited back then with my old pc…"Dino." 😛

Here's one of my favorite features of Blogpatrol's database as this is a pie chart from about a week ago based on this blog's data. It displays the number of unique visitors to your site on a daily basis and shows which countries they're from. What really surprised me at first was that even though I don't write posts in Japanese here Japan counts for a significant number of my visitors which is almost a third, Japan is second only to the United States as far as visitor location as Japan counts for 30.45% of unique visitors here versus 40.26% from the U.S. The rest of the percentages from the chart above for this blog are as follows: Australia: 6.99%, U.K.: 4.29%, Thailand: 4.04%, Canada: 3.97%, Singapore: 3.08%, Indonesia: 2.76%, Taiwan: 2.24%, and Germany with 1.92%. The last two pie slices for Taiwan and Germany aren't labeled above but if I hover my mouse over the slices the countries' percentages appear. I do wonder how much of a percentage is required for a country to appear though as I do imagine that there are other countries where visitors are from which don't appear in this graphic analysis. If you aren't yet using a widget such as this one I highly recommend it as it's really interesting to see the data which Blogpatrol is able to acquire and I believe that you can just click on the widget that I have here on the right side to reach their website and then set up your own Blogpatrol account which is totally free! ^-^

Well the week wasn't all bad as while I've been dealing with issues with access to VOX sites Cdjapan did deliver me the PV DVD single for Milky Way, C-ute's latest DVD single for "Namida no iro", and Yes!!!! Buono!'s LE of their latest single offering "Kiss! Kiss! Kiss!"!!! (^o^)/…and Fields of maiZe and berryZ and Berryz Kobo International have reviews that you'll just love!! ^-^

I also received from Amazon Japan an issue of Switch magazine with Aragaki Yui on the cover along with Kamei's latest shashinshuu extravaganza!!!…..and this one just caught my eye!! An issue of "Digital Photo Technique" where Kamei is the cover girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I may try scanning some of the photos inside as she has a 9 page article inside but I'm just so afraid of creasing the cover and spine! 😛

Again I hope to have the "Berikyuu! Idol" results from week one up soon….please "aka-static.vox.com" be good to me! 😛 A total of 126 votes have been cast so far and the voting will close at midnight tonight for anyone else interested in seeing their favorites make it into the next week. I'll still accept entries for the Berryz Kobou/ C-ute DVD giveaway up until the first week's voting results have been posted. ^-^

I'll post again soon….if VOX allows me access…… 

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About MorningBerryz

Lover and free spirit who's interests in Japanese culture and the like are insatiable. I am of pure Japanese/Okinawan descent, love my cats, sleep and am a bit naughty at times :).
This entry was posted in Japanese idols, personal, Zasshi and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to “The one with the final post.”

  1. Mikey says:

    Arrgh! I feel your pain! I really do! :(I think part of the problem with VOX/FF might be DNS (convert http://www.vox.com to numbers that the Internet really uses). Try this:click the Start button in the Start Search window on the bottom type run you will see a program called RUN with little blue box on the leftclick on itin the OPEN box type: ipconfig /flushdnsit will run a DOS box and dlash offrestart FF and see if that helps. OK?

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  2. Zush says:

    I say this again: We need you and your blog! Don't stop. Contact Ray.

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  3. DJ_MaiMai says:

    This is what makes me want to relocate my blog (again D=<). I can access Vox and comment and stuff but I can't post anything. But I've only had this blog for about a week…

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  4. Mikey says:

    Yes, please, I beg you MB! I think we can work this out for you. There are techical resouces in this group, even if VOX isn't too responsive. I think part of the issue is being wireless and being in one page so long (plus some of your posts are HUGE). One trick I do is to set the Post for ME Only Privacy, and save it occasionaly. When done, you reset the Privacy to Everyone, and all can see. I do think your provider could be having a bad/slow DNS. There are other DNS servers you can use. The bet the ones the University of Hawaii has would be kick-ass for instance. One thing you can try is to have someone bring their laptop or PC over and plug it in exactly like yours is now. See how that one does. Then you will know if your connection/Provider is the issue. I think I could have this resolved in one day if I was there – which I am not 😦
    I think you underestimate how important you are here dear. Working with other blog software is no panacea either. I don't blame you for being peeved/frustrated! Seems VOX does A LOT with pages and storage that call a lot of DNS requests! SO, I am thinking their design can make some computers/providers go bonky (as we have seen). Microsoft has long standing issues (bugs) with DNS too. Of course, its worse when the system is stressed.
    you can contact me at: mavila_92111ATyahooDOTcom

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  5. Lauren says:

    Hi, this is Lauren from Team Vox. I'm sorry to hear that you're having so many problems with the site! We would hate to see these problems lead you to leaving Vox and would like to work through the issues with you.
    If you could send Vox some feedback (the link located in the footer of the page) and give us a list of all the problems you've experienced, along with any details you might find important to mention, the rest of the team and I can try to help you out. You would most likely get a response by sometime early next week.
    Again, I'm sure we can help you before you decide to cancel! ^__^

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  6. Thank you for the help! But I'm just so afraid of anything involving DOS….going back 2 pcs ago I had a friend come over and he thought he was helping me by using Norton utilities to delete all sorts of files that the program deemed to be unnecessary but what really happened was the pc died and then all I had was DOS to look at for the next few days until another friend who was taking computer tech classes at the time (thank goodness!!) came over and was so incredibly nice to spend I think it was something like 8 hours typing all sorts of things in DOS until my pc finally came back to life! He had this telephone sized book with him for reference but I didn't understand a single thing written in there…..I think it was written in Greek! 😛

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  7. Zush your words really mean a lot! ^-^ I don't think Ray remembers who I am and wouldn't it be strange if a strange person showed up at your site's doorstep one day asking for help. 😛 Paul Thomas at Hello!Blog has offered to set up an account on the same server that he's on so I'm also thinking about that. Have you ever heard of wordpress? I'm wondering what it does. Amazingly VOX has been working all day today so far……it's as if "it knows" that I may be moving.

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  8. Mikey says:

    Thanks Lauren, you are the best!Hate to bug you, but situation is critical! :)Have a good weekend! ^^

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  9. Mikey says:

    MB, I understand. But there is no danger to do this one command. I tested the steps myself. It's not even DOS anymore (finally). Just try it if things start glitching up again, OK? :)That is very generous of Paul to offer! But WordPress is a whole order of magnitude more to deal with than VOX. Even with his generous help, things you now expect to be done for you, like grabbing YouTubes, pictures, etc. will be a lot more involved. That's why I came and stayed at VOX – it was SO much easier! All that power behind the scenes is awesome! So, for many people VOX let's them just blog and not worry about the details. I know this is terribly frustrating, but as The Beatles said: "We can work it out"! Hugs

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  10. Mikey says:

    [いいですね]

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  11. Hmm…I'm wondering why you still can't post anything. If you can comment and access all of the sites I would think that posting would work okay too. Last night something really strange happened here when I was trying to save this post which had been carried over for the last 3 days…I did get the same error message as you and it persisted for about 15 minutes or so. It was already bedtime for me so I was getting worried about losing the post again since I couldn't save it. It was just this little window that would open up and say "error your post could not be saved" but I kept the window open and waited while I went elsewhere with a separate browser open. I kept returning periodically to check to see if I could save the post but what I realized at the same time was that while using another open browser I couldn't reach any other VOX sites either during that same time as I would just get a blank page or a url not found message….and when suddenly after about 15 minutes of trying other VOX sites one did finally appear and when I returned to my post page which I'd kept open the whole time it did finally save this post properly. I'm wondering if this same type of thing is happening to you. When you aren't able to save a post are you able to access other VOX sites at that same time with a separate browser? Things are really great here at VOX and the site is really user friendly and aesthetically looks nice I think. I've been only having these issue recently but maybe they'll begin to sort themselves out. By next week I should know if I'm staying or leaving. Hmmmm…I hope it begins working for you too so that you can stay here too. ^-^

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  12. I feel so bad to bother you! and I can't believe that Mikey sent you here…bad Mikey! 😛 I will try to explain in a message to VOX what is happening right now and thank you so much for your message and concern! ^-^

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  13. Lauren says:

    No, don't even think twice about it! We really love to hear from Vox members, even if it means something isn't quite working right on the site for them. We're always here to help so drop us a message whenever you need help with something– or even if you just have a comment about a feature you like or would like to see. It's what we're here for. ^__~

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  14. She's just so cute on this cover and I've just never owned a non idol magazine which features a single member as their cover girl! Eh? you're looking at the camera name first?! :O

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  15. DJ_MaiMai says:

    Hmm… I don't go on any other Vox sites.
    What I've tried doing is first, I deleted all my cookies and history. Then I tried posting with no other windows open, and none of them worked. I don't think theres much else I can do…
    wait… I actually do have a pretty nasty virus on my computer. I don't know what it does but maybe thats whats causing the problem.

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  16. Mikey says:

    That's something I hadn't really thought of… viruses, etc.! Many steal a lot of processing cycles from the computer and make other functions go loopy too. I am on Vista (so is MB) and I use Norton 360 software. It integrates really well with Vista, and my Wi-Fi router has a firewall function too. Plus, all patches and updates too. But it's very hard to keep totally up to date all the time! It's a shame you pretty much have to have a firewall, anti-virus and anti-spyware just to surf these days! :(VOX is a nice place to be, and I hope you can get things sorted out. Are you using Firefox as your web browser? It's usually a lot less problematical that IE…Take care! 🙂

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  17. Mikey says:

    Did you see what I was saying about Saving your posts often using the Me Only privacy setting? No one can see it but you, so you can save it as often as you want! 🙂 Then change to Public when you are ready! ^^That Blog Patrol does sound nice. I had something like that, back in the day, but I had to copy all the data to Excel to examine things! 😦 My current one is pretty and does have interesting information. But… ^^Wouldn't it be funny if the fish program was messing up your sessions?! 😛 NOT!

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  18. Slasha says:

    I had that problem too.After a while of waiting I gave up.But good to see Vox is working again.

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  19. I also get stuck on your pages when I visit and usually have to close my browser… but I find that everything loads fine in Safari?

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  20. A virus?!! Maybe a program like Norton can help you get rid of it…I hope it's not too serious. It's really strange….now every things working again and it's like it knew I was seriously going to leave. I don't know why it's working again as I haven't done a thing to try and remedy the problem…did it fix itself? Try the Norton antivirus program as it may be able to help.

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  21. I actually do save quite often while writing posts but I think I may have become too comfortable since getting the laptop as I used to save numerous times back when I was using Dino! I've definitely learned my lesson! Hey I love my fish pond! 😛

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  22. Maybe my site is just too cluttered like my room! 😛 After nearly 5 days of keeping me out, VOX seems to allowing me in again..I'm so puzzled by all of this.

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  23. I'm not familiar with that name…is 'Safari' a type of browser? After just about 5 days of been locked out for the most part VOX is somehow working again for me all by itself. I have no idea what's wrong anymore….not that I ever did actually. 😛 I'm so sorry that this site gives you loading problems too. I'm beginning to wonder if I just have too many things here to load…it's been getting quite crowded lately with videos and audio uploads so that could be the culprit. I hope you're able to use 'Safari' okay. ^-^

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  24. Safari is the Mac default browser – and for the most part, it's a great alternative to other browsers, but just doesn't handle some web apps as well. :\ (Which is why I use Firefox for most of my browsing~ ^^)

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  25. Mikey says:

    MB, you are having intermittent problems, so I don't really think it's anything that you are doing, including big posts. Except when the problem occurs, that accentuates it.I am really wondering if very occasionally your wireless broadband signal and/or provider is having issues? DNS can work fine for almost all sites, but have issues with some like VOX that are DNS intensive (all those lookups you see at the bottom of your browser). Maybe coincidence, but it seemed to happened this last time when VOX was down. If they rebooted that could cause DNS changes that might not get sent out or updated by your provider in a timely manner. I know you are @@ at all this! :)Anyway, we all understand if you can't post for a while sometimes. Can you login with Blackberry to VOX? That would allow you to do quick post if you have laptop computer issues. VOX does have a mobile phone posting system. 🙂 Might be good to check it out.Crossing fingers that Pele is appeased for a while…. 😛

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  26. Mikey says:

    Here is VOX moblogging help from VOX… they even mention Blackberry! ^^Oh, I feed the fishes too! 😛

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  27. For me too Firefox is really just the fastest and most complete browser that I've ever used…it just seems to have a love/hate relationship with VOX periodically. It's Monday and it's still working! ^-^

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  28. That's a good thing because asking me to scale back on photos would be like asking your cat to not sleep so much every day. 😛 I just can't figure out why they're so tired all of the time…I go to work..they're sleeping….I come home…they're sleeping…………..they eat and then go back t sleep…..what a life! :O So you're thinking that perhaps something like this will occur each time that VOX does some kind of system change or maintenance? But if I could be sure that it would go away after awhile that would be much more easing on the mind. My Blackberry can log into VOX but I don't know if I'm up to that much typing on that little keypad with more than one letter per key! 😛 Actually I've never noticed it having a "post" option though. Maybe mines doesn't.

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  29. Oh and thank you for the mobile link!Thank you for feeding the fishes! ^-^

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  30. Mikey says:

    [いいですね]

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  31. Okay now I get it! 😛 I do wonder if it will work though as I don't recall seeing a post button to click on while being logged in with my Blackberry. I'll have to check again. That's what I was thinking….Eh?! I couldn't possibly type all of that on that little keypad! 😛

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  32. Mikey says:

    I will try a moblog from my phone. Any phone should be able to do this. I 'll go thru the steps with you then. Good to have a Plan "B"! :)Don't want your fingers mangled for life! :PKamei!!

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