27 July 2008

Back at the Helm

Took a 4 roughly 3 hour power nap,
added a bit to the tank,
and had a walk about in the backyard;
sunshine, warm air and a killer breeze.

A-Shift Over

I would like to thank Khouria Jen for making the Day of Blogs a reality, my awesome monitor JL who I never got to thank until now, everyone that I monitored, Anna, Becky, Cara, isabella, Letterblade, Melissa, and Moira, and esp. my sponsors.

I am going to take a nap and will return in a few hours or so.

(48) Mecha

This is your basic piloted walking and/or flying robots.

Examples: Voltron, Full Metal Panic! and even a Godzilla film had a piloted robot

Kikou Kantai Dairugger XV

(47) Pop culture

As an artist I am influenced by pop culture, and not just from the USA. Culture is spilling over borders more that I remember growing up. Then again everything is very different from when I grew up. I was at the end of a generation before mass technology. I remember when CDs first came out, a time before video games or at least the way gamers are now and when MTV was brand new and played videos. I know I am revealing my age, but hell I am not remotely old, and that is my point. There was an explosion and I was just old enough to see it and live through it.

My interest in pop culture lies on the lowbrow side, which is influenced by the area I live in – not even saying this is a bad thing since “good” and “bad” are irrelevant. I show life the way I see it or sometimes as a reaction to what I see.

"Kitsch is mechanical and operates by formulas. Kitsch is vicarious experience and faked sensations. Kitsch changes according to style, but remains always the same. Kitsch is the epitome of all that is spurious in the life of our times."—Clement Greenberg, "Avant-Garde and Kitsch," 1939.

(46) kawaii (可愛い)

No amount of punk music and horror films quells cuteness entirely. I still love Hello Kitty; it is possible to stay way from pinkness. Goofy stuff like that creeps into an otherwise black dominated existence (except now as I am wearing a florescent green t-shirt and Crocs, yet dark grey pants).

Then there is amigurumi (編み包み), i.e. knitted/crocheted cute animals or objects. If I can figure a way to make these without getting attacked my uber-playful kitties, I wanted to make some for the local Children’s Hospital.

(45) ---

A free for all, the wild card, the I do not want to have a set topic for a post. Now that I have halted my brain for the lack of following the script, i.e the topic list.

Which reminds me of The Topic, a long since gone coffee shop on the corner of Elmwood Ave. and Allen St. (where the Bubble Man lives -- really the guy blows bubbles from this apartment window, still), where one could order a giant cup of coffee called a "Hot Sludge". It was hot, thick, sure to rot your insides and the best damn cup of coffee!

(44) Go (囲碁)

I have tried to teach myself how to play Go and was inspired first by a manga series, Hikaru no Go (Hikaru’s Go). I have a board and started to learn the basics, but really need to be able to play against someone, someone who knows how to play.

(43) MAC

I am an Apple user and have been for a number of years now. With the new Intel based iMAC I am able to and do run Windows XP through Parallels, aka a Virtual Machine. Why? I have to stay current with both platforms first of all, and also because some of my classes use Windows based programs. It is very odd to be in a Windows environment and still see the MAC underneath.


Talking about windows, the sun is rising (well we are turning), never-the-less it is getting brighter outside.

(42) Crochet

I had tried to crochet on a regular basis as I find it soothing. There is nothing soothing about a couple of wound up cats attacking the yarn, even if it is in a “bag of death”. I started a scarf so long ago that I no longer wear the jacket it was supposed to go with – the point is a long period of time not matching. Alas, I would like to try and start again, even if the cats are just as crazy. They could be sleeping in the back of the house and know I have yarn at the other end of the house no matter how quiet I am, or think I am.

(41) Insomnia

What an appropriate topic for an early morning or a late night, depending on your viewpoint. I am wide awake again and have only had one more cup of coffee than “normal” (being 3), well make that half a cup since I still have some left. I do not sleep well to begin with, do not stay asleep well and tend to get up late because I finally fall asleep late. Hopefully in a few hours I can sleep for a bit. Last year after the Blogathon I only slept a couple of hours.

(40) Ninja Warrior

In Japan this TV show is called Sasuke. It is an obstacle course divided into 4 stages. Only 2 guys were able to finish the whole course out of 100 people each tournament for 20 tournaments. There is even an all female version with a different course. It has elements of a typical Japanese game show, crazy contestants mixed in with the serious ones, and the crowd carrying on when someone falls, unless it is one of the all stars. I think I have seen all the episodes for each version.

Here is a sample:

(39) Water

I have always lived near some kind of water, be it a lake or river. The water is so calming. Early mornings sitting on the beach watching the sunrise, is a perfect morning. I also like walking the shoreline looking for beach glass to turn into mobiles. Or, how about sitting so quietly at the edge of the tide line, listening to the water wash through the pebbles.

(38) Tofu

Bean curd, bean curd, yeh, yeh yeh!

If it tastes beanie or bland it was not cooked properly. Tofu will absorb any flavour you present it. Some people have a problem with the texture. I suggest trying a different type – more or less water will be harder or softer, respectively.

(37) Noodles

There is a difference between noodles and pasta. Noodles are ramen, udon, and soba (among others). Pasta, on the other hand, is shells, elbows, rigatoni, heck even spaghetti. Does not mater much to me as I love them all.

(36) Vultures

Many people I know dislike vultures. On campus (University at Buffalo) this year, there were 5 or 6 Turkey vultures living on Clemens Hall. They would fly and glide from the 10 story building – just magnificent.

(35) Skulls

There is something about skulls that I am drawn to, maybe because my favourite holiday is Halloween or maybe because of horror films. Could also be because of pirates, esp. after watching Goonies as a kid, who am I kidding I just bought the DVD last week. I have a mini skeleton hanging here by my desk and a larger skull next to me, one large enough to evoke Shakespeare –
“Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio: a fellow
of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy: he hath
borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how
abhorred in my imagination it is! my gorge rims at
it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know
not how oft. Where be your gibes now? your
gambols? your songs? your flashes of merriment,
that were wont to set the table on a roar? Not one
now, to mock your own grinning? quite chap-fallen?
Now get you to my lady's chamber, and tell her, let
her paint an inch thick, to this favour she must
come; make her laugh at that.”

(34) Ugly dolls

The official website

These toys are considered “designer” toys or “art” toys and they are part of a much bigger scene. I have a (small) Babo, and he goes almost everywhere I do because he is attached to my bag. I also love Ice Bat, Big Toe and Moxy.


(33) Body Modification

Tattoos, piercing, and gauging oh yay!

I love tattoos, watching people get tattooed, even though I do not have one yet (stressing the yet). Eventually I would like to get a Koi dragon wrapped around my left arm, coming from a whirlpool at my elbow. I think I will start on my left leg first, but I do not know exactly what yet (that and it is a bit expensive), hence the hesitation.

I have piercing, however, and I have gauged my ears to just about 0 (zeros); just about because I have not slid the new stainless steel pinchers in just yet.

(32) ukiyo-e (浮世絵)

Japanese woodblock prints are some of my favourite types of art (right up there with Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec). This style illustrates Japanese life beautifully, almost as a record of life at the time, esp. during the 17th century. Some of my favourites come from the kabuki theater or are by artist Katsushika HOKUSAI (葛飾北斎); the views of Fuji-san and “The Wave”.

(31) makizushi (巻き寿司)

Another very important lesson from Japanese culture class: how to make makizushi. I make mine with lightly browned tofu, cucumbers and/or sometimes avocado.

See example of Tofu Makizushi: