Friday, December 11, 2009

The only thing missing is the body

Since I believe most people find me really weird, I figure I might as well reinforce that belief.    This may be why I have a Psycho themed bathroom.    Writing about this will inevitably take away from the shock factor you might have had if you had walked in cold, but I figured Phoebe might want to see it.    It usually gets a chuckle, but some people are legitimately creeped out which is all the better.

The most important thing is the Psycho shower curtain.    I've been using this shower curtain for about thirteen years, simply because I haven't been able to find another.    It has undergone numerous repairs and the holes have been fixed several times.   I've seen other curtains in this same vein, but no others were licensed by Universal and usually look cheesy.     This is the only one I've found that says Psycho and has the trademarked image of Mother holding the knife.

Next is the skull and wig that I keep on the back of the toilet.    I thought about keeping a bloody knife next to it, but I elected against it for safety reasons.     

On the wall I have a lithograph of Janet Leigh screaming her face off.

The only colors in the bathroom are red, black and white.   The floor is black and white checked which looks great against the red floor mat and towels.     I find this a nice alternative to other parts where I live which have been Empire Strikes Back themed for about thirty years.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

If I did use the F-word......

I'm not one to use the F-word, but if I were, it would probably be used in conjunction with my disdain for The Chipmunks.    If you do hear me slip, don't feel the need to point out the inconsistencies between my faith and mouth.   I am fully aware of these things and can admit my shortcomings, mostly because of my understanding that I'm internally flawed to begin with.  At least that's my excuse.   I digress.

My parents will gladly point out that I did like The Chipmunks at a much younger point in my life and how I probably laughed at their cute little voices to no end.   I think the more recent disdain has taken an influx because of the tendency of Hollywood to put a modern tilt on an already irritating idea.  Specifically, The Chipmunks have gone hip hop and as you can see on the poster for The Chipmunks movie, they are "keeping it real" as opposed to just singing Christmas songs.     

This is both an insult to the hip hop industry as well as chipmunks as a rodent.   I suppose this is an insult to Entourage as well (referring to the slogan), but I've never actually seen that show to make a comparison.  I don't find Jeremy Piven's voice nearly as shrill as Theodore's if that counts for anything.   I used to love looking at chipmunks in New Mexico, but now my mind is plagued by high voices when I see one scurrying around.    Anyway, this poster is just flat out dumb and unfortunately the poster for The Chipmunks 2, The Squeakqual carries on the flame of retardedness.   


This time Alvin has his hat turned sideways to show his rebellious streak.  Instead of Theodore giving the peace sign with his fingers, it is now Simon.    Also, Simon is back to wearing his thick, nerdy glasses, which makes me wonder if his sunglasses in the first poster were prescription lenses.  Doubtful, but I do wonder.  That being said, I can't imagine ruining Christmas day by sitting through this film.

Now the movie business taking an idea from bad to worse isn't new.    Here are just a few examples:

1) a digital Garfield
2) George Lucas went from a digital Jabba the Hutt to Jar Jar Binks in a few short years
3) Toy Story 2 and 3 (also all digital)

While all of those are awful in their own right, I find this particular character transformation (which looks to be hand drawn) taking my disgust to a new level.

Lord, help us all.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Are we so enlightened?

There are things I love about NYC and things I hate.   Among the things I love are the vast amount of great concerts I get to see here as everyone plays in New York.   I also like the energy of the city at times as it is vibrant and full of life.   Among the things I dislike include the weather and the absolute disdain that the locals have for their own city.   They litter relentlessly on their own streets and then make fun of the tourists, who undoubtedly take better care of this city than they do.

The thing I hate most about New York (specifically New Yorkers) is the notion that they are better than everyone else.   At some point they were given the impression that they are more enlightened to the world and that people in other parts of the country are simply not as good as we are.  

I would like to take this post to declare or, dare I say it, prove that New Yorkers really aren't so enlightened.    Seeing as how today is Friday the 13th, I thought it the perfect day to present my case.    As part of my experiment, I carried my camera with me for a week and photographed the elevator panels in every building I entered with more than thirteen floors.    Out of the nine buildings I went into, surprisingly only one had a thirteenth floor *. 

How could this be?    Is the enlightened New Yorker so naive to believe that if they live on a thirteenth floor that something bad will happen to them?     It is important to note that a few of these buildings are less than ten years old, meaning that this superstition is still fully alive today in New York City.   The naivety extends to beyond that of just a missing floor.    Is the thirteenth floor not thirteen floors off the ground regardless of what it is named?   Meaning, someone living on a fourteenth floor is really living on the thirteen floor of the building.   The name is arbitrary if you think about it.    Superstitious tenants should be wary of such smoke and mirrors so as not to be fooled into living on such an unlucky floor.

If this ratio of one of our nine elevators is representative of the entire city, then a staggering 89% of New York City buildings do not have a 13th floor.   I find this rather astonishing for a city that claims to know it all.  I am interested if this phenomenon is present in other cities, thereby making other places as unenlightened as we are.    Please enlighten me as to the elevators in your area.     I, for one, would gladly live on a thirteenth floor, especially if it would come with a reduction in rent.

*Interesting that most elevators put a star on the first floor.   I'm not sure what superstition that is referring to or how that came about.

Monday, October 26, 2009

For The Love of the Game

Baseball is the "great American pastime", but it doesn't appeal to me at all.   Some live for it and find it highly exciting to watch.   I find it wrist-slittingly boring and there aren't even any cheerleaders for heaven's sake.   I like watching little kids play baseball in little league, but that's the extent.  Six and seven-year-old's kind of suck at everything and I find it funny watching children fall down. One of my few joys in life.

Part of my distaste for baseball could stem from the fact that my parents forced me to play baseball as a kid and I was unquestionably the worst player on the team year after year.    (This applied to soccer as well.)   The coaches would always hand out awards at the end of the season and I always got the Participatory Award, which would have been more aptly named the You Suck Award.   At some point I knew I would just mess up, so I sort of just stopped trying.  I would just stand on the field like a dipshit* and drag everyone else down.  Funny how this notion never went away.  

I teach alot of kids how to play guitar here in NYC.   Frequently, I am asked whether I like the Yankees or the Mets.   My stock answer was always that I don't watch baseball, but I guess I would choose the Yankees.    I have since altered my answer to the Mets ...and that I still don't watch baseball.   The Yankees might lose a few games here and there or maybe even lose the pennant by a game, but their history is still full of successes.    For the Mets, it's quite the opposite.   The Mets are losers, but they keep getting out there and playing game after game, as futile as their efforts might be.  I find the effort inspiring, although most would deem it pathetic.  The Yankees will always come out winners and the the Mets will always be losers.   That's just the way it is.   "For the love of the game", as they say.  

Incidentally, I don't watch basketball either, but my favorite team is the Washington Generals.    I have searched high and low for a Washington Generals jersey to wear, but no one sells them, nor have I ever seen any Generals merchandise on Ebay.   At one point, I thought about going to a game with a hundred dollar bill and trying to buy a jersey off a player.   That never really panned out and I stopped thinking about it until today.

Thanks to Cliff for the inspiration to have a baseball related blog.   You can read his blog over at:

*I hope no one is offended by the use of the word dipshit, but it sums up my athletic abilities better than any other word.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A good day to be a nerd.

So, I'm at work today and Star Wars artist Kevin Liell calls me on my cell. You may remember him from NY Comic Con where he held the Star Wars Trivia Contest. A great guy and spectacular artist. He had an extra ticket to the World Business Forum being held in Radio City Music Hall, where George Lucas was speaking from 5-6pm. I managed to get off work because I couldn't pass this up. Being a nerd, I got there early and had some things for him to sign 'just in case'. I showed up and he had just walked in less than five minutes before. One guy was there and had about ten things signed by George. I was bummed.

Anyway, I guess George talked for about an hour about his career and then it was over. Well, the Lord almighty smiled on me today. After the talk, Kevin and I went to the stage door and hung out for a little while. Eventually George came out and I got two things signed. My 1975 third draft script and a photo which was already signed by Gary Kurtz. I could have had more signed but there were a bunch of professional autograph hunters which mobbed him. It was successful, even if I didn't get to talk or anything.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Coffee Cake Conundrum

There are many things in life I just don't understand, which range anywhere from the popularity of Jack White to the willingness of Mac users dish out $3000+ for a computer in the 21st century. But whatever. Coffee Cake falls into the category of things I don't understand.

Let me explain. I don't drink coffee. It just isn't my thing. I like the smell, but that's about as far as it goes. I don't like coffee-flavored anything. That includes the following: coffee, ice cream, cake, gum, or you name it. Some people live for coffee but not me.

For the majority of my life, I lived without coffee cake because I don't like the taste of coffee. At one point in the last few years, I remember having a similar conversation to this with somebody.

Unnamed individual: "Daniel, would you like some coffee cake?"
Me: "No, thank you. I don't like the taste of coffee."
Unnamed individual: "Coffee cake doesn't taste like coffee. It's called that because you eat it with coffee."
Me: "That's about the dumbest thing I've ever heard in my life."

I don't know what genius named coffee cake, but he/she is officially on my black list. I don't call french fries "Cheeseburger Sticks". I don't call ketchup "Hot Dog Juice". What jackass came up with the reasoning behind the name for Coffee Cake? Since when do we name food for what it might go well with? Sometimes I wonder why I get up in the morning with morons like this running the world. All this time I could have been eating coffee cake had one of my hundreds of "friends" let me in on this secret.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Labor Day Weekend 2009 - The Food :)

The Shed - Santa Fe, NM: Green chile stew followed by blue corn chicken enchiladas.

Orlando's - Taos, NM: Chile rellenos

El Paragua - Espanola, NM: Chips, salsa and salad followed by two chile rellenos. This salsa was super hot. New Yorkers would have been crying.

The Cowgirl Cafe - Santa Fe, NM: Chile rellenos

Besides the food at the Cowgirl Cafe, the servers are all really cute and dreamy. My adorable server had "serenity" tattooed on her hands. This should give me enough ammo to dream about for a year.

Just a sample of the rainbow trout I caught during my short trip. Much larger fish than back in April.

Labor Day Weekend 2009 - New Mexico

I spent more time in New Mexico over the long weekend. It is a home away from home and such a nice place to escape to.

Monday, August 31, 2009

The Ring 2 - part 2; The Ring 3 - part 1

This is starting to sound like a bunch of horror movies, but it is just more of me banging on quarters. I realized I never posted pictures of the second ring.

Long story short, the second ring was just way too small. It looks pretty good though. I have since these pictures smoothed out the edges a little bit.

Seeing as my personality won't let me live with something I don't like, I looked on Ebay and found another 1938 ring.

That arrived at my place on 8-29-09. In four hours on Saturday, I pounded, drilled and shaped it into this. FOUR hours start to finish. Pretty dang good.

Here are the three rings I have made thus far. The first ring (on the left) was a little too big, the second (on the right) was too small and the third fits just right and has the most words visible. I only have a little left to do on it, but it will probably have to wait until I get back from vacation. On that vacation I will see my parents and see if they want the first two rings. I'll keep the third.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

We aren't as tough as we would like to think.

There's something very peaceful to me about watching a violent storm from a high rise. It makes me smile seeing the proud run for cover.

"Can you send forth lightning that they may go and say to you, 'Here we are'?" -- Job 36:32

(Click on images for full size)

All seems quiet....

but there is a lurking terror.....
ready to strike.