29 October 2010

Back to back Daft Punk

Sneak preview of the Roommate's Daft Punk costume for Halloween. Total domination.

The picture of Rodin's Thinker is a wall hanging I bought from Room & Board. The actual sculpture was too large to fit in the house. And also too expensive.

Party pics to follow.

oh hell yes

Daft Punk brings the noize.
Might have to get the soundtrack before I see the movie.

The brunette in black is Olivia Wilde, who is so pretty it makes my eyes hurt. Were there any other people in the video besides Ms. Wilde and Daft Punk? Not that I noticed. 

28 October 2010

Cats = win

Got a haircut today. Just in time for Halloween. It doesn't really add or detract to my guy-in-green-velour-shorts outfit, but now my hair is shorter. And I'm 85% more dashing. Helloooooooo, ladies...

In unrelated news, this graphic with the cat made me laugh. I got it off the internet, so thanks to the theoatmeal.com for allowing me to pilfer it. I liked this, too.

And if you want to know how many Bieb-dawgs you could take in a fight, go here.

Me: 24 Biebers. Could have done better but refused to make protective armor from pieces of dead Biebers.

The people have spoken, part II, re: Pawn Stars

Longtime reader Big Cheese says:

I too just discovered pawn stars and came up with the very same analogy...its like antiques rodeshow with attitude. Its not as dumb as one would think. However, after watching every available episode on demand, I now have mixed feelings. Everyone who sells shit on the show gets taken to the cleaners. I guess your an idiot if you try to sell something at a pawn shop in the first place, but the smugness of rick, who is clearly knowledgeable, rubs me the wrong way. Its hard to watch a show and pull for a guy who takes advantage of people, kinda, even if its only cuz he's a savvy business man. Interesting show nevertheless.

Oh and I like chumlee btw.
Well allow me to retort:

To put it bluntly: you can't rape the willing. It's a shame the people need the money more than they need whatever it is they're selling, but they are not coerced into selling. Nothing prevents them from going somewhere else. Or not selling. So I don't agree that the guy is 'taking advantage' of people, at least not as far as they show us in the program. If anything, it's the fault of the seller for not doing some research before they show up. And also their fault for not walking away from the transaction.

I also enjoy watching Rick drop knowledge. I also enjoy them asking, "pawn it or sell it". It's one of my new favorite expressions.

Maybe I'm smug because I love watching Rick tell people how much their stuff is worth? Seller: "I hope to get $3000." Rick offers $250, buys for $300. And then I laugh.

Reader Shannon (not my sociopathic sister) likes the show, and also to say the words 'Pawn Stars' because her "life is boring and it makes [her] feel a little dirty", which is funny. And reminds me of how my friend Boston Jeff liked to use a similar expression, pronounced 'pahn stah', in re: his, ahh, anatomy, and a girls indelicate handling thereof. Coincidentally, Boston Jeff's comments also made me feel a little dirty. Synergy.

Thanks for reading.

27 October 2010

Westside Batman

It was this or batman with deer.
The westside hand was the difference maker.

Post fail - Update

Tried to post via mail and it didn't work. 

So here it is again:

This happened.
If it doesn't make sense to you, go here.

26 October 2010

Truth in cookies

This is is pretty much how I decide if I should eat a cookie.
I love dessert.

Out of Town, watching TV in a hotel room

Out of town this week so I ended up watching some (mostly) bad television in the hotel room. That's why I don't have a TV in my room at home. Anyway, fun programs to watch on the History channel: Pawn Stars, which is like Antiques Roadshow with some harsh lessons about economics mixed in. And also American Pickers, which is a couple guys in the midwest trolling around and trying to find items they can flip for a small profit.

Pawn Stars is awesome in that the guys are smart, do a brisk business, and don't mind giving people a hard lesson in economics (and negotiating) when they bring in stuff to sell. The lesson is that your stuff is worth only what someone else will pay for it, which usually isn't much, and it is ALWAYS less than what YOU paid for it. They also employ the dumbest guy I've ever seen on television: Chumlee. Check local listings or set your DVR so you don't have to sit through the interminable commercial breaks.

American Pickers is two guys traveling around trying to flip antiques they dig up. The show was originally recommended to me by Jeff, and I was skeptical, not least because I'm never home and hardly ever watch TV. Long weeks traveling on business fixed that, so I'm caught up on my TV watching. Pickers is entertaining because they are not wealthy, just carving out a living doing something they love. And although they mostly sort through junk and trash, they do have a passion for old stuff and an infectious enthusiasm.

If you don't feel like learning about antiques and pawn-shop desperation, you can always head back over to discovery channel and enjoy more episodes of idiots yelling about overpriced, slow, hilariously unrideable penis-extensions. Or not.

22 October 2010

21 October 2010

The people have spoken!

Reader Shannon (not my similarly monikered sociopathic sister - some other Shannon) commented on the Mondrian Cake post, which is near and dear to my heart because I have liked Mondrian's art for a very long time, and I love cake like it's my job.

Take it away Shannon:

I've never cared for Mondrian because I always thought it looked like he made a career out of repackaging the same painting over and over again. Then again, I love Fornasetti who is pretty much the godfather of the one hit wonder.

So, I'm fickle.

I have no idea who Fornasetti is so I had to look it up.
Yikes! I don't see the appeal there, but to each their own.

Yes Mondrian tended to do the same thing over and over again. Most artists do, but Mondrian is more obviously repetitive because people recognize the pattern. Rapahel never got tired of painting his sluts groupies girlfriends as madonnas, for example. But that's apples to oranges. Maybe a better comparison is Pollock? Both adopted a style and then worked within it, trying to execute their vision. Either you like it or you wonder why anyone would hang it on the wall, never mind pay for it. 

Probably I like the Mondrian because it soothes my OCD. A place for everything, and everything in its place. It must be said that the works tend to show better in person; I've never seen a Mondrian and liked it less than I thought I would, even though they all "look" the same. Except when they don't. a ha.

20 October 2010

Photo op: Seville

Seville, walkway
Been editing and re-editing my posts lately. Takes me a couple tries to get the words in order. If I edited my papers this much in college I might have gotten decent grades (proofreading is for chumps; I got by on genius alone).

Full size versions on flickr.

Took this in Seville. If you click through the image has a caption that explains why I enjoy this picture, but if you're not in the mood, here's a summary:

It's got some people for scale, and organic and inorganic elements mixed together. The architecture gives it a unique feel. It looks very Seville to me.

Walkway is wet because it had rained overnight, washing away some of the grit. (Seville can be a hot, dry, dusty place.)

Seville was a great place to take pictures. The architecture is beautiful, and the weather was either cloudy, with patches of sunlight, or bright sun. Cloudy weather makes things easier to shoot with my shit camera because the light is diffuse. Sunny weather makes the colors pop more. Either way it's hard to take a bad picture in that town. Like this wall, for example. It's a Gothic wall against a sharp blue sky, but it still looks cool. At least to me.

18 October 2010

Motorcycles: putting some life in your years

sean on the bike
Spent Sunday visiting with my friend Sean, teaching him how to ride his motorcycle. Photo is him sitting on it and getting ready to start learning how to ride. I had to sneak a shot from this angle because I know he was nervous and I didn't want him focused on me taking pictures; I wanted him focused on not dropping his bike.

We started from the beginning - he didn't have much experience on a bike before we took it to the parking lot. And by 'much' I mean 'any'. But that's okay - everyone starts from the beginning, and he had a good attitude about it.

Riding a motorcycle is not easy, but it's easier than you think.

Once he got used to the idea that he could do it (an important step in the process) he was doing circles in the lot without issue. Which is funny, because I didn't tell him how to turn the bike. I just said, 'make the turn' and pointed him the direction I wanted him to go. Moderate-speed turns on a bike are one of the easiest things about riding. Technically you use countersteer to turn (you push the handlebar in the direction you want to turn, so push left, go left; push right, go right), but by the time you get done explaining it people have a glazed look in their eye and they're worse off because they start thinking about it, tense up. Tense is bad, and Sean had enough to fret over with the shifting and braking and clutch and gas.

He did superbly, and he's got his permit, so he's going to practice in his suburban neighborhood for a while until he takes the MSF safety course and gets his full license. But now he can practice on his own. Awesome.

15 October 2010

Hee fee

This from ze Smith.
What did I like best? Was it the soundtrack?* The graphics? The haircut? The unbridled awesome? No. It was they way he said "hee fee" every time 'HiFi' came on screen. Ahh, I laughed. If he had said something about "1969 being a very momentous year" I would have fallen out of my chair.

*In the time it took me to type this, the soundtrack skipped from Ghostbusters theme, to Pirates of Caribbean theme, to Indiana Jones theme.

Speaking of soundtracks, also this. I didn't much care for the video, though.

Let's take a picture

Posted the last of the pictures from my recent trip to Foreign Lands to flickr. Still planning on highlighting some of my favorites in this space. Pretty soon. Eventually.

For the record, this is the second to last picture I took on the trip. And the only extant photo of me and ze Newbs from the whole deal. Had to use the camera timer to get it. I know what time it is. (No, really, I'm wearing a watch.) Shirts optional. Killed the image at request of ze Newbs.

True Story: Had to call a guy from work and ask him a question. I kick out the jamz in the office, because I have a door (which I generally leave open, but whatever). I turn the jamz down when I get someone on the phone because the headset mic is sensitive and I don't want to bring the noize too hard. I'm a professional, after all. Just as I get on the phone the computer has a seizure so all of a sudden volume control is not available. Co-worker inquires "are you having a rave?" Me: "nah. it's dance party USA up in here, all day. TGIF motherf*cker!"

I'm management material for sure.

14 October 2010

Watch this!

Because I think you should watch it, and also because it's a clock. Get it? har har har

The 600 Years from the macula on Vimeo.

Art you can eat: Mondrian cake

Some people like Piet Mondrian's artwork, some don't. I'm a fan.

In related news, I hope the next time I'm at SFMOMA I can get a slice of this cake. Because it's artistic. And I love dessert. A lot.

13 October 2010

Happiness explained (evolutionarily speaking)

I thought I had posted this from ze newbs, but when I tried to find it, I couldn't. So here you go.

Short version: Your brain will change your view about the world so that you feel better about the world that you live in. And you won't even notice.  :)

Presenter is Dan Gilbert.

12 October 2010

"Beer Guy" costume: delivered

The Liederhosen / Beer Guy / Shorts with Suspenders and Matching Socks costume arrived in the mail. It's early doors, but:
  • It reeks of diesel exhaust, sweatshop, and child labor. I'm concerned it won't survive a wash; I'll have to hand wash and air dry. 
  • The socks are my favorite part. 
  • Green velour is very slimming.
  • The hat doesn't even kind of fit.
  • Tried the shirt on in the office, and it's a wee bit small. And by that I mean it's skin tight. Friends of the blog will remember that I'm not above wearing slim-fit shirts in general, so I'm going to keep it as is, since if the 70's taught us anything, it's that a tight polyester shirt > a loose polyester shirt. Or something.

11 October 2010

Craig Ferguson wins again

Cold open from his show, featuring a flock of seagulls lip sync and the guys from Mythbusters.
And puppets.
And total domination.

The monster your monster could smell like

If loving this is wrong I don't want to be right.

A spoof of this excellence.

Note: 'I'm on a cow' just doesn't have the same ring to it.

Did they get him off the waiver wire?

Following the game from the web while I finish up at work. No idea who Fontenot is. Presumably he plays for the Giants, because I'm pretty sure the Cubs didn't make the playoffs. I know it's hard to keep track of all this stuff, but I'd imagine they would go through and audit all their player photos for the playoffs. Or not. Not's good.

Keeping busy: Stand up paddleboarding in Newport Harbor

Yesterday I wasn't busy so I followed up my advanced yoga class with a pleasant afternoon paddling around Newport Harbor on a stand up paddleboard. Conditions were really good and I was not terrible, so it ended up being really fun. Here's the summary of what I learned:
  • The board is more stable when you're moving. If you get stuck standing (literally) in one place, such as if you have to wait for the ferry, you are more likely to fall in. I didn't, but it was a near thing.  
  • Paddleboarding is waaaay more fun than going in circles in a Duffy. And better exercise. I'd argue it's better than a kayak, too. Much better view, 6 feet off the water.
  • If you get stuck waiting for the ferry, tourists will take your picture. They do it to everyone, because when I told the guy at the rental shop that I had to stand and wait for the ferry boats, he laughed and asked me, 'did they take your picture?' And indeed they did do. I almost waved, but I didn't want to go tumbling into the water in the middle of the channel. Not because I couldn't get back on the board, but because the water in the channel is nasty. 
  • Paddling downwind is easy. Paddling upwind, less so. 
  • Eat a powerbar and drink some water before you get started.
  • Sunglasses are optional but recommended. Sunscreen is required. 
  • It's hard to throw a friendly wave at passing boats when you're one careless gesture away from a dunking. So I made do with my paddle as best I could. 
Next time there's no waves and warm(ish) weather I'll try it at Doheny, which is supposed to be super fun. At least the water there won't give me hepatitis when I fall in.
See you there.

08 October 2010

Decision: Made

In a nice change from what has been the Shittiest Week Ever, I got to visit with my friend Steve and his lovely daughter Madeleine (pictured). She's in the argument for Cutest Kid in America, which is good, because her sister (not pictured) is also in the argument. Steve had the good sense to marry up, so they get their looks from their mother.

For those of you waiting on pins and needles re: What the fuck am I going to be for Halloween? - Wait no more. I decided to be the "Adult Beer Guy", which is sort of an octoberfest / liederhosen / alpine deal. I opted for this getup because it's about average in terms of douche level, but should be reasonably comfortable. Those velour shorts are looking wonderfully textured and polyester. Very slimming. You can't ask for more than that. At least not for $60.

06 October 2010

It's times like these you start asking yourself the important questions...

Important questions like: what the fuck am I going to be for Halloween?

I loathe dress up but the alternative (sitting at home doing nothing) isn't really workable, esp. when my friends are throwing a big Halloween party again this year and all I have to do is show up. Last year they got 300 people to go. Plus there will be plenty of trashy girls dressed in slutty outfits (or is it slutty girls in trashy outfits? either way, really). So we're costume shopping.

Because I'm crap at costume ideas and even more crap at putting them together I'm going to buy one off the internet. It's fine to show up as a sunflower (Pete in 2008) or kissing booth (Jeff, 2007) or 'dynamite in the sack' (Jeff, 2006) or Dennis Rodman (Pete, 2009) or a cockblock (Mike in 2006 - he wore a box with pictures of roosters taped to it) but only if you're really committed to the project. I'm committed to getting out of the house, not the dress up aspect. Narrowed it down to a few choices: 
I'm leaning towards the Liederhosen outfit because it would be reasonably comfortable and appropriately silly. Even though someone else will almost certainly be wearing it. Mix and match, get a Lieder-disco thing happening?
We're soliciting feedback, so if you've got some, let me know. I'll transact by the end of the week, I think. To make sure it's here in time, fits, etc.

Today > Monday

Nothing great about today except that it's not Monday. I wish I had something nice to say but I don't. FML.

Right now you'll have to make do with the first batch of pictures from my recent trip to London and Spain. I put them on flickr (instead of kodakgallery) because I wanted to be able to link to them directly from here and not have to send you an email invitation. It's especially useful for the people that visit this space that I don't know very well. Which, judging by the google analytics data, is most of you.

If you do decide to browse the flickr photos, be sure to read the comments. They may (or may not) explain why I included a particular picture. Photos that I really enjoyed will show up in this space for further review.

Photo for THIS post was taken in our room in Madrid. Both me and Ze Newbs were a) glad to be on the last leg of our journey, and b) glad that our trip from Sevilla to Madrid was about as easy as it could have been. And I thought it was funny to get a picture of him coming out of the closet, as it were.

04 October 2010

Watermelon facebomb

Terrible day today. Just fucking terrible.
Bad news in my personal and professional life. On the professional front, my company is being acquired by another company. Should know if I have a job in the next 4-6 weeks. If not, well, I'll get a new job. That's life. Could have done without that news, esp. in light of the personal disappointment. But it's not like you get to choose this stuff. It just happens.

On the other hand, people still punish themselves with watermelons to the face.

True story: I sometimes use the phrase "I can't feel my face" after I've had several drinks. So that makes it funnier when the girl says it after she eats the watermelon.

It's the little things.

01 October 2010

Decorating tips? Brotally!

Roommate hung this over the fireplace this week. It's powerful. Friend Scott says, "You guys are such bros!" I think he's just jealous.