Friday, July 31, 2009

lesson in bay area slang

i enjoy learning new slang, and i'm often curious about the etymology of words. this doesn't give all that, but it does learn you a lot of fun words. read quickly.

rubber hose chair

this post is mainly for justin and adam. i challenge one of you two (or anyone else) to make me a rubber hose chair like this. if it's comfy, i'll buy a set from you. i realize it's more likely adam will take on this challenge, but i know justin appreciates a fine chair.

i think this would make great lounge furni for my back yard.

here's a boing boing post and a indestructables article that gives you some instructions.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

odd photos - discovered at the landmark and snarky note

last night at the local i saw something on the wallpaper that i'd never seen before. this always amazes me because i frequent the local, and use the restroom. how have i not seen this little line drawing before:

i thought it could be someone's original doodle, but no, it in fact is part of the wallpaper and repeats.

this next photo i took at work today. there is a board on the fridge so people can leave a note about food they're sharing. i didn't like the use of quotation marks on the watermelon note so i had to add my own two cents.

i'm a jerk. what's your excuse?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

william shatner recites sarah palin's farewell speech

i admit i haven't stayed up and watched conan host the tonight show, but i've seen a few clips and it looks pretty fun. good funny ideas executed well.

in this one, conan got william shatner to recite sarah palin's farewell speech like a beat poem. brilliant.

but really, that was her speech? what the eff? bizarre.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

the great fresno tweetup

ah, twitter. i know that some of you, along with myself, joke about twitter. one of the best descriptions i've heard or seen lately about twitter is that it is a great marketing tool masquerading as a social networking site. and i see a lot of local folks using their tweets to advertise their job skills, their businesses, their blogs, and so on. most tweets aren't just the stereotypical "pooping, then a shower, and maybe some lunch at el torito."

twitter is also becoming a way of organizing people. i wonder how future protests might use it to organize meet ups and avoid police. i know it was used somewhat in iran recently for this very idea. locally, and on a much smaller scale, the fresno grizzlies and the beehive have joined forces to gather local twitter users for a game.

so, i've already rsvp'd myself for the game. $5 ticket, + i get a $1 drink coupon. it's thirsty thursday, so my first beer is on them. sweet. and, as many people as want can come along (although i'm not sure on the drink tix thing).

so, who wants to brave the heat and see the grizzlies play?

Monday, July 27, 2009

monday haiku

mowed the lawn today
also a little late seed
croquette maintenance

one hundred three does
not feel as bad today. am
i heat adjusted?

happy birthday

on 7/27/05 this blog started. now it's turning 4.

so, what are we going to do? celebrate?

Friday, July 24, 2009

tower community meeting

i'm pretty impressed with fresno right now. you all know i love this city, but sometimes they do things that really make me hopeful. the other day the city held a meeting about downtown improvements. i didn't go to it, but i'm hopeful that those that did contributed to a healthy discussion.

this weekend the city is having a meeting to discuss my neighborhood, the tower district. what can we do to improve olive, van ness and the surrounding streets? will more bike racks help? should we have more public art? something else?

you have an opportunity to add your voice.




(sadly, i have a previous commitment on saturday and won't make it to the meeting myself. but i'm for bike racks!)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Monday, July 20, 2009

monday haiku

heat is crushing me
repeated wake ups during
night. just awoke from nap.

m.c.a. from the beastie boys has cancer

wow, shocking news from the beasties camp. mca has treatable cancer, and the album & tour are being pushed back (understandably).

Thursday, July 16, 2009

one day vacation trip reflection

ah, back from an enjoyable 24ish hours off the grid. no cell phone coverage, no internet, no facebook, twitter and whatever else. it's weird, we have coverage just about everywhere now, so when you hit a spot that doesn't it's sort of nice, just lets you enjoy what is happening around you.

stayed the night at camp fresno with some friends. a few refreshing beverages, couple hours of poker, good times around the camp fire.

speaking of camp fires, along with "normal" wood we also burned a broken chair from my buddy's back yard. went up quick, burnt hot, looked cool.

camp fresno is a dinkey creek, is rather rustic, but was a nice get away.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

miracle at st. anna

today i watched miracle at st. anna. i have many thoughts, and thought i'd share them in a brief fashion:

why didn't this movie receive all the life like war acclaim that saving private ryan did? race?

dave chappelle/david alan greer black actor theory - cast of the wire + remember the titans - okay, a little bigger than that, but still, a lot of the same faces.

germans speaking german, italians speaking italian. how novel for a war movie.

germans using the idea that "terrorists" (partisans) not protected by geneva convention - very familiar

same prayer in multiple languages great touch

spike lee's best movie to date

lunch experiment

i do enjoy to experiment a little in the kitchen when i have some time. today was such a day. i had been kicking around several ideas for lunch, and settled on this one.

we bought these noodles the other day for some sort of spicy asian salad thing. they sucked in that capacity.

you see, these noodles are a mung bean noodle that are rather bland when you boil them as prescribed. so i figured that i would try something different with them. the package says you can fry them, and i thought i'd give that a try.

but what to put in them? let's think veggies. ah, we have broccoli!

you soak the noodles for a while, and then i boiled them a bit. you can see in this pic how transparent and sort of nothing these noodles are.

i let the noodles boil a bit and then added the broccoli to let it cook a little.

after boiling, i drained my noodle/broccoli concoction, put a little olive oil, pepper and garlic powder in the pan to let it all warm, and then dropped in the noodles. i also added some teriyaki sauce and some soy sauce, which gave the noodles a little color and flavor.

i let it all fry for a bit to get that pan fried noodle feel and taste. this was a bit tricky because i didn't want to burn the noodles, and i also didn't want them to stick to the pan.

here's the finished product:

post meal thoughts: nothing special. the noodles still sucked texture wise, although the stuff i added gave it a decent, familiar taste. i can't say i'd make this again. not exactly a lunch fail, but not a win either

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

what is it?

let's play a little game, which i know isn't original to me: what is it? i saw this today, and thought i'd snap of photo because i thought it looked interesting. but, can you figure out what it is?

leave your answer in the comments.

Monday, July 13, 2009

concert review: abigail nolte, niilo smeds & wheels of fortune

it's funny how things happen sometimes. you meet people and stay vaguely connected. i met niilo and brianna smeds at a friend's apartment a while back, and we had rather nice conversation. i wouldn't say we hit it off, and hang out all the time. we have sat at a bar once (maybe twice) since then and had a drink, but that was more random chance than some sort of meet up. anyway, i eventually became facebook friends of them both in time, and so i see their status updates. btw, this sounds extremely creepy as i write this.

anyway, i saw a status update the other day from niilo, about an upcoming show featuring r.c. from el olio wolof and my friend abigail nolte at audie's olympic. the show was only going to be $2, so i figured i would go. at the time, i thought it was that night, which sounded great - something to do, and monticore could go as she was on vacation. a few minutes later i reread the post, and noticed that the show was actually sunday night, which ruled out monticore coming along as she was returning to work today and needed to sleep.

as the weekend went along, my excitement for the show began to lag, and on sunday i noticed that niilo had again updated, and that r.c. had canceled out. that sucks, and it pretty much put me into a spot where i figured i might not go.

then, about 8 i received a text from abigail. she wondered if i had a capo, and if i could bring it to the show. i said i did, and would. i'm glad i did.

abigail started the show off, using my capo on the second song, as well as others. abigail is a great talent, has an awesome voice, and is a good song writer. i've talked about her here before, have enjoyed her rogue shows, and so on. last night she impressed me even more by doing something that is rarely seen: she shut up a crowd of dudes talking at the bar. and she didn't just yell, "stfu!" she stunned them into silence with her voice and songs. and this happened in the first two songs. she even got two guys playing pool to stop playing, sit down, and pay attention. the rest of her set was well done and much appreciated by the crowd. and, she bought me a beer for bringing the capo.

the rest of the show was an interesting mix of stuff. basically, all the guys of wheels of fortune played solo sets, and then the band played a set as a group.

james brittain gore went first. i've seen james play a few times, and he received a lot of local press last year about this time as he was releasing his solo cd. anyway, james has a nice voice, and is an all around talent. he did four songs (i think) that were nice. btw, the drunks started talking again. i guess it pays to be an attractive female with a big voice.

dylan tidyman jones was next. he's played in a ton of local bands, and i know he does solo stuff that i've seen but i can't remember the name he uses for that solo stuff so i can't link to him. anyway, he's got a quirky voice, and had the sound guy and reverb and echo to further trip it out. i enjoyed his set, but his vocals needed to be a little louder, or guitar quieter. wait, i finally tracked down a link, he performs as succulent.

andrew carlos bunnell
is a guy i heard and met last night for the first time. honestly, i'm forgetting his set right now. ah, wait, he did songs that were a nice mix of pace, sort pop-rocky. i don't know if that's a fair assessment or not. after his first song, he said it was a cover of a swedish (?) band and he had translated it from swedish. then he said that wasn't true. pretty funny.

niilo smeds, (read a nice interview w/him from mike oz here) no longer has a myspace account. or at least he deleted the one that he had that i was going to link to. he does however have a ton of talent. i've seen him play solo, and enjoyed the show, and was sorta disappointed he only played one solo song before the whole band joined him. as a band, i don't think i'd seen this group, but maybe i had because the songs had a very familiar feel to them. maybe that was from seeing niilo solo, whatever. it's a good familiar feel, like something you've listened to a dozen times and want to keep listening to. which, if you look @ my itunes and see how often something gets played, there's a lot of 1 or 2 played songs, but only a handful of ones that get more than a dozen. i think wheels of fortune could be one of those bands for me. the band played a nice set and left me wanting to hear more.

so, where does this leave us? well, abigail nolte: see her. in fact, she hosts an open mic on mondays @ starline grill for free. wheels of fortune: see them. see them, along with the sleepover disaster & rademacher @ the post art hop show on august 6 at tokyo garden.

two final notes - i was sitting with malcolm sosa from rademacher @ one point, and he said, "club fred makes him feel old and sad." this cracked me up, and when i pressed him for why he didn't specify. however, he tweeted this which i think sums it up, "Is watching my old heroes play to an uncaring room for a two dollar cover." (you can catch rademacher @ the partisan this saturday with the sleepover disaster & downtown/union.)

later, i was sitting with vince from the sleepover disaster, and we were chilling, enjoying the show. abigail texted us both and said we make an adorable couple. i thanked her, vince texted that i was taken. you can see the sleepover disaster on tuesday night @ audie's olympic with geographer (from san fran).

auto-tune the news: vol 6

so, these guys have made several of these, but this was the first i'd seen, and thought i'd repost it here.

while it makes me laugh, it also reminds me that all songs with auto-tune are crap. the awards at the end of the vid are the bestest.

monday haiku

michael bisping, chris
tucker has something for you
knocked the eff out

notown derby is
always fun and exciting
can't wait for next match

Thursday, July 09, 2009

create your own flyer

i saw this while i was walking home from scoops, enjoying some delicious ice cream.

i'm sure that when it was posted it had something written on it, but it's long since gone. it's funny because it's written on lined paper, like they posted a letter or something, not a flyer.

now, you can let your imagination run wild and create your own flyer.

nude flight safety video

air new zealand has done an interesting little safety video for their flights. rather than have some boring old flight attendant drone away about the exits and what not, they've put together a video featuring flight attendants...nude.

okay, they're painted, and the paint job is actually pretty good and looks like their uniforms.


blake jones @ tokyo garden

received an email from the master of the theremin and thought i'd pass along the info to you:

Saturday, June 11th at Tokyo Garden.
Three bands bring some sweet coolness
to your summer Saturday night:

Opening the show is:
Blake Jones & the Trike Shop

Second up , from San Francisco, it’s :
(indie-rock/prog w/ a sense of humor)

!!HEYA!! ---Come on out; let's give these out-of-town bands
a great Fresno audience and show 'em that this is a place to
mark on their map for further shows!

Closing things off, it’s Fresno’s own:
It’s an Icicle

First band (Trike Shop) is up promptly
at 9:30.

Come drink in the sounds of local and
not-so-local music as you lounge under
the comfort of Toshi and Tomi’s
inflatable Godzilla.
See you Saturday night!
5 bucks (cheap!)
promotions go to local TV:
check :
Central Valley Buzz on Thursday, June 9th
from 4-6pm for live music, witty banter, and more

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

united breaks guitars

for more details on the story of united airlines breaking $3500 guitar by recklessly throwing it around, click.

metric fail update

remember this post? it seems that someone may have heard about it. whatever the case, we now have a better fitting title.

living with first person shooter's disease

if you're not careful, video games can have very drastic results on your life

show review - rademacher & these united states

let me start out by saying that i'm only review two of the three bands that were actually on the bill. i missed the headliner because i was getting a little tired and didn't want to fall asleep on the drive back from visalia.

this was the first show i've seen at the cellar door, and i like the venue. it's a nice, wide open space, although the stage/dance floor sort of dominates it. if you're not up on the floor, you're looking up @ the bands, which isn't a problem unless it's packed and that area is full and you're not on it.

rademacher opened the show, and malcolm said that the 9:30 time slot was the earliest he'd ever played at the cellar door. ah, the joys of opening. i thought rademacher started their set very well. the first few songs had me enthralled enough that i tweeted "rademacher sounding nice at the cellar door right now." and i meant it, the sound was real nice, the band was playing with good energy. i was really starting to believe a theory i had about rademacher playing stellar shows outside of fresno. and then malcolm flubbed the lyrics to "if u got some magic." and rademacher's set sort of had an ebb and flow of goodness after that. some songs sounded nice and had me loving it, others dragged. i have really enjoyed the addition of jonathan hadden, and i think he is getting more comfortable in the band and is adding to the rademacher sound. the last show i saw, at tokyo garden, really rocked and i think jonathan was a big part of that. tonight, he seemed a litle lacking, and his solo on their newer song lacked. but, i really like that song and want to keep hearing it. one last thing, malcolm on the keyboard: i don't mind it, but it seems to distract him from singing & playing bass. maybe put the keyboard right in front so it doesn't have to be a big transition between playing it and singing. or maybe get a keyboard player?

these united states - i dug these guys, but don't have quite as much input for them because i haven't heard them as much as rademacher. these guys hail from washington, dc and kentucky, although i'm not exactly sure how that works. but, they have a sort of alt-country sound that definitely feels more kentucky than dc. the music had a lot of layers, but that should be expected when you have 3 guitars, a bass and drums. and, one of the guitar players worked a lap slide for quite a bit of the show, which was a nice sound. from the band side, the only issue i had was that the lead singer seemed to mumble his lyrics quite a bit, as well as some of the between song banter and it was a bit difficult to understand. on the cellar door side, there was a lot of feedback during this set, and i know the sound guy was working his hardest to eliminate the squeal but it persisted long enough to be a bit of a distraction to the set.

overall, i enjoyed the show, even if i didn't stay for the main act. the cellar door is a pretty cool spot. i continue to enjoy rademacher's music and hope they continue to work on their sound. and, i'm going to have to look on emusic and itunes for these united states - shoulda bought an album from them last night.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

eric frimpong

i encourage you all to read this interesting piece on rape, athletics, race and the justice system from espn. it's only one side of the story, but it is a very compelling read.

michael jackson

i appreciated the music of michael jackson. i think he was a fine talent, although his latter work tailed off in my opinion. nonetheless, his early musical career is something to be respected, admired, and possibly even used as a road map for success.

having said all that, i also recognize that he was a man with a lot of issues. and, his issues often took on a very public nature. there were rumors, tabloids, papparazzi, and everything else. and then there were the trials.

when he first passed away, i felt bad for the man and his family. and, like many, i just wanted to focus on his musical career. not that i wanted to dismiss the allegations, but i wanted to remember why i had enjoyed his music and keep that memory of this public figure.

but now, with all of hoopla surrounding his burial, memorial, etc. i'm a bit disgusted. he may have been the self proclaimed 'king of pop' but he wasn't an actual king or head of state. there is no need for his body to be viewed by thousands at the staple center. there is no need for his memorial service to be broadcast on several networks. there is no need for the rampant speculation about where his body will be laid to rest.

and the further it goes the more it goes the more it bothers me that we are sweeping under the rug the fact that he was accused of child molestation, and that it was widely speculated that this was a repeat occurrence. i watched the martin bashear documentary where michael talked about how sharing his bed with a child was the most beautiful thing. something wasn't right in how this guy treated children, and he settled out of court so we'll never have a verdict to prove what was really going on.

michael jackson was a great entertainer.
michael jackson was a troubled individual.
michael jackson was a star.
michael jackson was a pariah.

we must hold all of these paradoxes in their tensions, and never forget what we know about michael. i'm not saying he should be laid to rest unceremoniously, but we should keep it in perspective.

Monday, July 06, 2009

monday haiku

nice weekend for us
few bumps but still lots of fun
roman candle duds

rest in peace mcnair
unfortunate end to your life
respect lost titan

happy birthday wiens
nephews turned one today
twin boys are trouble

Friday, July 03, 2009

red pepper pizza and birding cat

two funny photos from thursday evening:

the first came from my art hop show. my buddy mike wise charlie wanted a little red pepper flake on his pizza. in true comic fashion, he ended up with plenty on it.

for those that missed the art hop reception, don't fret. you can stop by milano any time during the next month and see the paintings. 1243 fulton mall.

the second picture is funny because in her old age, our cat has decided to be a bird killing cat. or, at least she is trying to pretend that she is. there were two dead birds near our house, and i guess it's possible that she killed them. she brought one of them to the door step last night. we've had the cat like thirteen years and this is the first time she's done this:

Thursday, July 02, 2009

a post for brodiemash

have some cat drifting

stupid protest sign

"if you like foreign oil you'll love foreign food"

as i read a story online about a water protest in downtown fresno i saw a photo of that statement on a protester poster. then, as i read the print copy i noticed that the photo was front and center.

to me, the statement is ridiculous. the two things are totally unrelated, especially when you are at a rally for water in our state. whether or not the federal and state governments regulate water has nothing to do with importing oil.

seriously, the more i try and make a connection, the more my head hurts. our farmers want water. if they don't get enough water, food production will be done. and how do we make the jump to oil?

let's try the other way. i like foreign oil. so, maybe i like foreign food (which i actually do). how does this relate to california water?

can anyone help me out? am i being obtuse? does the sign make sense to anyone?

not my class but i want to kill someone

so, as some have gathered, i don't have a class currently @ one of my jobs, so i'm on a "vacation" for five weeks (this is week 3 of it). but, that doesn't mean i'm not working. i'm doing a bunch of sub work, mostly in what's called the student center. it's a computer lab where students can work on papers, get help with math & english work, etc. but, it's also used by classes for lab time.

due to this, i get to watch the interaction between instructors and their students. one particular instructor has a very different class management style than i do, and that's fine. but, some of his students treat him with such disrespect that i want to slap them. really. i've mostly bit my tongue, but today a particular student got the best of me.

he came to class an hour late, and then went to use the restroom. then, he basically sat and did nothing while he pretended to work. as the instructor explained an upcoming paper, he asked what double space was. is it pressing space twice after each word or each line?

i had enough. okay, i actually had enough when he came to class and then announced he was going to the restroom. i challenged him with, "really, you come to class late and then go to the restroom?" so when he asked about double space i asked him if he really didn't know. he said he didn't because he doesn't use windows. he uses mac. to which i explained that double space is pretty much the academic format for everyone, everywhere. windows, mac, doesn't matter.

so, instead of jumping up and trying to kill this fool, i'm blogging about it.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

july art hop

All Free*.

Milano restaurant - 1243 Fulton Mall

*free is relative. you're free to look at and enjoy the paintings, and even free to purchase them. the pizza, well there will be free pizza while supplies last. then you can buy some. the pints, from the get go you're free to purchase that.

cats in costume

interested in seeing a poor lot of cats dressed hilariously? i am. click over here and enjoy.