Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

I San Francisco

And this oh-so-magical artifact.

San Francisco 1958 from Jeff Altman on Vimeo.

Were you aware...

that in Japan, Kit Kat bar pandemonium has intensified, with Nestle's release of a special "cherry blossom" edition? "Kitto Katto," as the bars are known there, come in a wide variety of flavors including Green Tea, Apple, Melon, White Chocolate and Maple, etc. The cherry blossom flavor will be released in April to coincide with cherry blossom season, as well as test-taking season because, apparently, Kit Kat bars are are viewed as lucky charms in Japan. This may be due to the fact that "Kitto Katto" sounds very similar to the Japanese phrase "kitto katsu," which translates to "You shall surely win/be victorious."

Take a little trip down Kit Kat Breaktown way; buy some golf club bags.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Tough times in the world of dudes

My friend P found this recently on the Craigslists. She found it amusing, but I think her interpretation was: "geez, this guy is a real a-hole." But I don't, I think I see his frustration:

Check this out! - 28

Date: 2009-10-25, 9:28PM PDT

I know my job and I own up to it, I learned the hard way - but I own up to it now. My job is to be decisive when you say "what do you want to do tonight?" My job is NOT to say, "I dunno, what do you want to do?" It is my job to say, "I would like to [verb here] to [insert place] and [activity here]. Yet, I must also know when you have your own idea and actually want me to say, "I don't know, what about you?" How should I know? That's my job as a man. I must know. I do know.

He wants to be that in control/take charge kind of manly man. But, at the same time, he wants the lady to feel like he respects her ideas as well. At any rate, I'm glad it took him only 28 years--not the average 45 or older--to discover that women want to be with someone that knows what they want and how to take control, yet can also manage to respect a lady's need to feel like she has an equal say in all matters of going out on the town. I know if I were a dude, I'd be confused about my gender role as well. Old fashioned values in the modern world--it's tough for dudes, tough times indeed.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Adlai Stevenson

I'm a new mother now, to a four month baby kitten that I've named Adlai "Cricket" Stevenson. While I've always been wary of pet people that refer to their little bundles of joy as "children" in general, I'm starting to see how easily it can happen, how one can fall into parent mode when a new, vulnerable life rests solely in your hands. But hopefully I won't become too comfortable with this concept, for I fear I may turn into this:

But it's strange how these things happen. One day, you're just looking out for top dog numero uno, and the next, you're buying food for this new creature, taking it for physical examinations, being handed an "adoption certificate," and, worst of all, having nightmares that the little varmint has fallen into a well or worse. And when someone calls the squirrelly little rascal "stupid" or "slow" for attacking the knob on your dresser, or for biting its own feet, you get protective and your mama bear sensitivities make you defensive. But all of this ridiculousness is well worth it when you come home to a little creature that seems to want nothing more than to love you and get showered by your attention. This strange new animal is now looking at you lovingly, as if you were the only person in the world that matters. Is that a kind of motherhood? I think so.

Although, you won't see me putting my precious one in a stroller and adorning it with sweaters. I'll save that for the gay couples that frequent Duboce Park (a friend of mine witnessed it, this is what happens when people aren't given the right to start an actual human family).

So, getting back to the name "Adlai." I love this name, and this man. Adlai Ewing Stevenson was a one-term governor of Illinois who ran for president; lost to Eisenhower--twice--but, the third time, when up against JFK and of course losing, was entrusted with the role of UN ambassador. Stevenson was known for his grandiose oratory skills, his wonky professorial demeanor, and as a liberal crusader for the Democratic Party. But his most resonant characteristic was his quirkiness, and an iconic photographic of his shoes:

Supposedly, Stevenson wore these shoes with great pride, as it represented his devotion to pounding the pavement while on the campaign trail. I only found out about this man and his mysterious shoes when this image came out during Obama's campaign:

There is one more sweet little anecdote about this obscure man of mystery and beauteous name, found via the wiki:

At the age of twelve Stevenson accidentally killed Ruth Merwin, a 16-year-old friend, while demonstrating drill technique with a rifle, inadvertently left loaded, during a party at the Stevenson home. Stevenson was devastated by the accident and rarely referred to it as an adult. However, as the Governor of Illinois he was told about a teenager who had survived an automobile accident while his friend was killed. Stevenson told the teen's father that he should tell his son that "he now has to live for two", which Stevenson's friends took to be a reference to the shooting incident.

If names become indicators of anything, my child/cat better grow to be something special.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Asgarda photos by Guillaume Herbaut

File under: epically great ideas

I read some shocking news the other day, got me real mad: In India, illegal, sex-selective abortions are still on the rise, and contribute to a $250 million per year industry for the country. Despite the government's best efforts to give incentives for families to raise daughters, females are being killed brutally by such methods as drowning, starvation and poisoning. Over the last 20 years, researches have begun noticing the impact. Whereas in most countries there are 105 females for every 100 males, there are now only 93 females for every 100 males in India. Apparently, some Indians believe that those who give birth to females will be reincarnated into a lower caste system. How murdering an infant can then allow these scumbags to reach a higher ranking in the "next life" is something I can neither comprehend nor explain.

However, I can explain how to eventually reverse this horrific predicament: send members of the neo-Amazonian, Ukrainian tribe Asgarda to India, have them beat the shit out of known offenders, then whisk young Indian girls away to their own special commune in the foothills of Nepal, where they will learn karate and grow strong like the Asgarda. Then, let the Indian girls loose where they can rape and pillage the hell out of all those neanderthals killing babies. Like the original Amazonians of the Scythian variety, they can rape men and have the babies in a safe place where no one will kill their infants, then continue to raise only the girls, sending the male infants back to the villages from whence their fathers came.

Then, Quentin Tarantino can make a bloodfest of a film about it, a worldwide phenomena will be created, and similar Amazonian tribes will naturally crop up all over the place. I must say, my ideas are quite brilliant at times.

Friday, October 02, 2009


I love watching children get into a song, and the mesmerizing innocence they can bring to the most jaded of ballads. This reminded me of the Langley Schools Music Project from the late '70s.

(Thanks, Sean!)