Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Death Pumpkin

In lieu of candy, I give you cheese.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Continuing YouTube Comment Ownage

In an unrelated mini-flamewar today on YouTube, some fellow made this comment on one of my videos:

"pretty sure this guy will never ever make it into his local newspaper"

It was very satisfying to provide him a link to the New York Times.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Almost robbed again... by an 8-year old.

Today during our weekly pick-up soccer game in Central Park, a group of young kids, ranging in age from around 8 to maybe 15, came and hung out on the sidelines. We let some of them play with us, the rest of them were just hanging around by our stuff.

First mistake.

Some of the older kids eventually left, leaving a group of 4 or 5 smaller kids. I glanced over and saw the smallest kid with my backpack on his shoulder, trying to casually walk out of the park. I immediately shouted in my Shakespeare/kung fu instructor voice, "Drop it now, son." The kid dropped it and took off running. The rest of his group started moving more quickly to the fence. I ran over towards them and they took off too. I quickly checked my bag to see if anything was missing (there wasn't) and then ran after them in case they had gotten anyone else's things.

They had about a 50 yard headstart, but here's the thing - I'm pretty fast. I may be incredibly out of shape and broken down these days, but you give me an injection of adrenaline and I'm frakkin' Carl Lewis. At the very least, I'm faster than a bunch of 10-year olds. 

So after about 100 yards I caught up to them and shouted again in my best Dune voice, "You can keep running or you can be able to walk the rest of your lives." Yes, I yell bad action dialogue when I'm chasing people. However, it worked, and they all stopped running, thus preventing me from treating them like the little brothers I never had.

They quickly offered to empty their pockets and bags, but I told them we were going to walk back to the field to see if anyone else was missing anything. One kid was sucking on his asthma inhaler, for love of Pete - ridiculous. I felt like I had foiled a robbery attempt by the Bad News Bears.

A couple of other soccer players caught up to us and I asked if anything else was missing and they told me no, so at that point I let the kids go.

Mistake number 2. I should have still walked them back to the field and taken their information and photos, as well as made them do push-ups and sit in horse stance for the rest of our game.

The problem is, the older kids who had left earlier swiped two of the other players' bags, so it might have helped to track down the older kids if we had the younger ones. Still, the cops nabbed two of them who be able to ID the older punks.

It all was just so sad - the kid couldn't have been more than 8 or 9 years old. Heart breaking, really. Plus, if they had at least been older, then I could have taken out the recent theft of my computer on them.


Return of the Samurai

If you're over the age of, say, 28, you may remember a certain unsung member of the Superfriends named Samurai.
Samurai was one of the four Minority Report heroes (along with Black Vulcan, Apache Chief and El Dorado) added by Hanna Barbera in an attempt at providing a level of diversity within the Justice League.

Samurai had wind powers. Samurai could turn invisible. Samurai could turn into fire.

What Samurai could NOT do is hook up with Wonder Woman.

Until.... TONIGHT, BABY!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I miss the dog.

I had one of my passionate, intense and, unfortunately, fast burning summer flings this year. As always, it ended coldly and horribly, but one of the new twists in this episode was that she had a dog of whom I had grown very fond.

I never had a dog growing up - I had other, less cuddly pets; birds, fish, hamsters and the like. Nothing I could wrestle or run with, nothing that would curl up at my side of the bed just to be near me.

Other girlfriends have had cats, but (as any dog person knows) a cat's love, while very fulfilling, is conditional, while a dog's love, once given, is perfect faith and friendship.

So it was with this dog. I loved walking him, I loved feeding him and watching him eat. It was incredibly meditative, the intensity and rhythm of his mastication. Once given permission, his focus became laser-like; he pragmatically dug in, cleaned his bowl, checked for stray bits and then returned his attention to the world around him.

He'd crawl under the desk while I was working and guard my feet. When I'd see him after several days of absence, he'd bound up to me in that joyful way dogs have. We'd immediately mute our elation at being reunited in deference to my ex-girlfriend's rules about him jumping up on people, but in our hearts we were rolling around on the ground of her East Village apartment.

Running was fantastic for both of us, as I had never had a dog to run with and he didn't get taken for runs as much as he would have liked - he was walked quite often but never properly tuckered out as he needed to be. One time, jogging along the East River, we ran down by the band shell on the Lower East Side. There's a jump up onto the concrete stage there of about 3 1/2 feet. I headed straight for it and leapt up (I'm a bit of a jumper), giving him enough advance slack to either try it or avoid it as he saw fit. He jumped - right into the concrete. At full speed.  My heart stopped for a moment, watching his canine carcass slamming into the hard rock face and tumbling onto the ground. My fear was short-lived however; he immediately sprung to his feet and tried to scramble up the ledge again. Fear turned to elation watching him try a second, then a successful third time. When he made it up, he practically tackled me with happiness, jumping up and down around me, so proud of his accomplishment. I had to maintain a dominant position, of course, as he has had a history of negative rambunctiousness, but inside I was secretly deliriously proud. In that moment he was MY dog, and when we stopped in the park for water and grass, I felt a kind of peace I'd never really experienced before in my life.

Tonight, walking to the market in the rain, it seemed everyone chose that exact point in the hour to walk their dogs. My eye and mind deconstructed different parts of the dogs I passed and reassembled them into my friend; that was his snout, those were his eyes, there wags his tail. My throat tightened knowing I'd probably never see Mister Tallulah Raisinfarm again, and then I walked into the store.

Friday, October 26, 2007

For Halloween I'm dressing up as a (zombie) hipster!

Although it dangerously treads the American Apparel-clad borders of hipsterism (a movement I consider to be the death of culture and creative thought), my love of Halloween and the Halloween Parade, combined with the genius of (1980's version of) The King of Pop, is far too great to resist this:

ThrillerNYC is, in their own words, "a group of New Yorkers who once a year become one of the undead in order to follow the king of undead, Michael Jackson, through the streets of the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade."

What's not to like?

I'm going to end up missing the first two rehearsals, but I plan on forcing my roommate, who is also doing it, to teach me. I've made a copy of the convenient choreography handout he received from the group; it contains such helpful move descriptions as "Zombie Cheerleader" and "Zombie Swim."

While I will miss the 4 consecutive years I dressed up as Groucho Marx and ran around like an idiot with my friends dressed as the Marx Brothers, sometimes you just have to move on.

Although, I could always go as ZOMBIE Groucho. Hmmm....

November is National Novel Writing Month!

I missed this last year, so I'm super psyched to give this a shot so that I can cross "Write a Novel" off my Life List.

The great thing is it has all the motivating factors of a competition without any of the actual judgment or ranking of a contest of literary skill.

Go ahead and join up. It's free! I'm thinking of maybe throwing a little potluck here at Game Headquarters to kick it off!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Free Cory Doctorow Short Story has published a little Cory Doctorow short story. Do yourselves a favor and read it - it's only 2 pages long.

If you don't know who Cory Doctorow is, he's a futurist science fiction writer. His mystery/sci-fi novel, Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom is fantastic, as is his collection of short stories, Overclocked. In short, he's just about the best thing going in sci-fi today, in my opinion.

He gets all my whoofie and a bag of chips.

Thanks to Sean over at the nerdalicious I'd Rather Be___ blog for the heads up on the Forbes link!

Rain + Cold + Early = No Soccer for Shy

So I can do early and rainy, or early and cold, but I just can't do early, rainy AND cold. Thus I skipped my 7 am pickup soccer game. I did roller-blade about a third of the way there before I decided to nix going, so at least I got out of bed and got dressed, rather than throw the alarm clock at the wall and go back to sleep.

I need more soccer! Stop raining/being cold!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

BACK to the Future - New Posts are Old Posts

It should be noted that since this blog is new and an attempt to consolidate my various musings on different subjects over the past 15 years, many of my new posts will appear months, if not years, in the past, as I'm stickler for chronological order.

So check the archives if you're curious.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Logic is underrated

I love it when people try to change the initial premise of their argument in order to avoid being wrong. The most obvious and infuriating example of this nowadays is the Bush administration's uber-spin machine, but it's my one-on-one Internet interactions with cyber trolls that really amuses.

For example, I just had my first flamewar on YouTube (ah, you always remember your first, don't you?). I'd rather not give this fellow any more attention than he already desperately craves, so here is a summary of the exchange:
Guy 1: No one shoots movies in chronological order.

Me: Sure they do. Saving Private Ryan, Werner Herzog's Aguirre, the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Lost in Translation, Dead Poet's Society and A Beautiful Mind all shot in chronological order.

Guy 2: No one shoots movies in chronological order. You're thinking of editing and you're a halfwit moron.

Me: I just listed a bunch of movies that shoot in chronological order and you're rude.

Guy 2: No one shoots movies in chronological order.

Me: Well, now YOU'RE the moron; they do. Google it.

Guy 2: Yeah, but it costs a lot of money.

Me: That's not what we were discussing, and that's not always the case.

Guy 2: If you argue with me, you're a doodoo head.

Me: Who are you, Karl Rove?

Guy 2: You're a doodoo head!

I then go watch this guy's videos, and his most recent video is a blog about being kind to strangers! He actually says in his own video, "Do you wanna be remembered as the faceless asshole who just bitched and whined and left nasty comments on YouTube?"

Yes, I'd like the Irony Cobbler with a side of Hypocrisy please.

After I rate his video 1-star, he then writes this little poetic gem:

Petty-rating the videos of someone who refuses to be dragged into a childish argument with you online is no more than I'd expect from an immature cunt such as yourself. If it helps you deal with your debilitating sense of powerlessness for one more day, then I've performed a useful service to society. But you'll have to find ways of dealing with the other 21,900 disasppointing days of the rest of your life. Maybe half a dozen more MyFace profiles will help create the illusion that the world gives a shit about yet another web-lurking housebound freak.

Ah, nothing bespeaks aged wisdom like the phrase "immature cunt." I tried to respond in order to point out that I low-rated his video because it was hypocritical, but he blocked my account so that he could have the last word.

Again, ironic. But quite entertaining!

Anyway, my point here is that if a nice, basic Logic class were included in the curriculum of high schools, we could avoid a great deal of all this nonsense and confusion, from the media and government spin and rhetoric, all the way down to Internet trolls with fragile egos.

Imagine how much easier life would be if people could readily identify logical fallacies? No more falling for ad hominem attacks. No more irrelevant conclusions, non sequiturs, or generalizations!

Sigh... it'd be nice.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Indie Comic Books

Man, I hate indie/"alternative" comic books. You know what? Being emo isn't a super power. Get a dose of gamma radiation! Build a super suit. Fight some frakkin' crime!

Indie comic book writers are just lazy, wannabe novelists. Get your whiny, melodramatic tripe off my comic store shelves and write your damn novel/screenplay/tv pilot already.

Yeah, I'm talking to YOU, Love and Rockets!

(That said, if you happen to write/illustrate an indie comic book, you're automatically cooler than I am because you're getting your stuff done. Christ, nevermind this rant, I'm just bitter and uncreative.)

Friday, October 19, 2007

More Dumpster Diving Success!

This past week I found an Inversion Table just down the block from my apartment. Some physical therapist or the like had clearly just gone out of business. It was disassembled and missing a pin and a few other parts, but nothing that couldn't be jury-rigged via Home Depot. I've always wanted an Inversion Table - unfortunately there's just no room in my apartment for one. So I sold it on Craigslist for $50! Financial windfall - whoo hoo!

And, of course, there's always the continuing stream of free flowers on my street - a fringe benefit of living in the flower district.

Oh, and if you're wondering if I regret getting rid of the inversion table before I used it for some other purpose... the answer is Yes.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Why do all Spiderman costumes have muscles now?

It's ridiculous. When did Spiderman become the Hulk?

Spiderman costumes should just basically be underoos/long johns. Hell, ALL superhero costumes should just be underoos/long johns.

Fake muscles in Halloween costumes are the modern day equivalent of having a picture of the character you're supposed to be dressed up as on your chest.
I always HAAAATTED those costumes as a child. It's like, "LOOK, I want to dress up as DARTH VADER, not have a PICTURE of him on a plastic bib!"

Why are adults so stupid when it comes to designing kid stuff?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Some guy writes a song about my love life.

Saves me the trouble of having to write one myself.

"Thank You For Leaving Me (When I Was Down)"

"Thank you for leaving me when I was down
Now I can pick myself up off the ground
Now I can cry without you around
Thank you for leaving me when I was down
Thank you for leaving me when I was down
Now I know what your love was all about
Now you can fly without me around
Thank you for leaving me when I was down"

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Giving Drupal a shot.

Well, PostNuke, Mambo and Joomla have annoyed me to no end in terms of their lack of a simple, intuitive user interface. These Content Management Systems (CMS) are ridiculous; are these keyboard jockeys SO out of touch with mainstream users that they don't know how to do a simple WYSIWYG interface? #@$*(&#?$^!!

Featured on the Nerve Video Blog today!

Nerve Video Blog

They've featured my Asian Response and Some Kittens Can Fly! on their video blog page today by the inimitable Jessica Gold Haralson.

Special Thanks to Mike VanHelder and Luke Crane for the referrals!

Apparently my name is funny...