4.04.2013

Wonderful television series and why the fantasy genre always gets an edge...

I used to never really watch TV.  That's okay, because of the past few years, I've picked up a few shows that I really like. 

Through the aid of modern technology and Netflix, I have become addicted to the newer Dr. Who (was never big on sci-fi), the Walking Dead (was never big on horror), and Bones (but I've always loved mysteries!).  My PS3, which I watch more shows on than actually play games, has made this possible.  My family and I watch a lot of these crazy shows together.

The most recent DvD I picked up has been The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.  I know I'm kind of on the late bus for that, but I have been at the point in my life (a while back) where I just really didn't care about what was new, hip, or trending.  So ....while people pay astronomically stupid amounts of money to go watch shows with a hundred other people and overpriced popcorn, I just wait for the release on DvD...and now, Netflix.

I have to say though, that when it comes to spending money on useless junk, that generally the fantasy genre wins hands-down every time.  I mean, yeah, it would be neat to have a $40 sonic screwdriver pen, but why buy a pen when I can get something as cool as Gladriel's ring?


I know, I know, I painted the door like the Tardis.  And it's cool and all.  But to me, a reproduction of a magical ring, maybe some Gryffindor striped socks, or an elven star is something you can probably wear and get away with easier.

Not that I haven't seen a friend sport a Mockingjay pin, or even people with steampunk gear...but somehow...a 'prop' that's sci-fi and doesn't work doesn't seem as cool as a magic ring or talisman....that might work... I dunno.  Leave it to the imagination of someone who believes in magic to come up with that kind of backwards logic.


3.09.2013

just the awe


I have no reason why I woke up at 5 this morning (I am NOT the morning person...), so I took the freshly-made rye out of the bread machine (which I bought recently at a FABULOUS deal) and started some wheat-flax, then baked cinnamon roll waffles in the waffle iron.  I hear mom shifting about, so this morning, we attempted to call my half-sister in Thailand.

I dial out the phone numbers through a 5 dollar calling card, hand the phone to my mother, and hear a strange, long beep.  My sister in law  answers the phone, and my mother and her begin a loud exchange over my cell phone, which mom promptly takes outside.  It's 8 am here, the sun is just beginning to break past the city skyline, and there's enough light to see so she's outside watering her Asian corn and talking to my sister in Nan.

It's moments like this I find remarkable.  Thirty years ago, any phone call attempt is kind of hindered through international lines, costs a fortune, and you're dealing with operators along the way.  Now....somewhere, a signal bounced from this hand-held device, across the atmosphere, and over half a day and half a world away.  For less than five bucks.

The timbre of Thai, the singsong language of my mother's people, I find soothing.  Perhaps its the inflection, or the knowledge that whatever she's talking about (I don't understand the mothertongue) is totally mundane and the chatter of a loved one calling you, but it sets me at ease.  The rate at which our technology has advanced is astounding, but I'm grateful it makes it possible to connect my mother to her family in Thailand, from which she has been isolated so long.

2.24.2013

The Time Lord Door


So of recent, I've been on a Dr. Who kick.

I don't care too much for Sci-Fi, but really, I kind of enjoy the modern incarnation of Dr. Who.  My father has a passion for Sci-Fi, as do many of my other family members and friends.  But...all the technobabble and such really is kind of a turn-off for me.


I particularly like David Tennant.  For the short-lived incarnation before, and the 11th Doctor (who..well, I just got into that season on Netflix, so we will see), I think that Mr. Tennant brings a beautiful element of compassion to the playful eccentric attitude in which he plays the good doctor.  So...in tribute to that thought, I decided to make the outside facing back door of my shop disguised like that loveable blue police call box.



Firstly, my sister was quite the artist.  She got a degree in art, and I think for all intents and purposes, I felt overshadowed by her talent.  It took me quite some time to realize that regardless of how wonderful her art is, that in my own form and fashion, I too am an artist.  So I gave up on perfection or out-doing my big sis, and just kind of started doing my own creative thing.  Perhaps most people don't recognize me as an artist - I don't care.  I mainly just claim to being creative and witty, both of which pay poorly, but are more fun at gatherings.

The blue door has more meanings though, too.  It is fitting that it is the Tardis.  A time machine.  The blue in and of itself reminds me of happy moments.  One in particular (and kids, this is AFTER I started the project...here I am, gently caressing the door with my brush, trying to invoke a specific color...and with it, certain memories come rushing back) of taking portraits in front of a blue door.  Others from school.  Happy moments, which have drifted off into time, letting me gaze back in the wake, sometimes wistful.

But it is art, and it will move forward. And we will see what comes of it.

2.11.2013

Preparations

So Mom and I have been talking a lot about what we would do if anything ever happened.....and after talking about it, we decided that going the route my sister took was easiest on everyone.  She was cremated through the Neptune Society. Everything was so easy and it was appreciated. And there is even a payment plan.

2.09.2013

At the market

So, at the market, things have been interesting.  They have had cukturak dancers all day. The kids have haf fun, recording and watching. I love seeing traditional dance of other cultures.

Instead of collecting useless stuff (I dunno...sterling is nice to look at, but who realky cares about some piecemeal,  used set bought off Ebay?), experience and seeing, they seem to be worth more to me. Just saying.

12.14.2012

AWOL brain

So, yesterday, at the last minute, my eldest daughter explains that they are having a Christmas Party for her AJROTC group at her high school and she really-really-really-please-mom wanted to make cuppy cakes.

Being a moderate fan of the tiny little sneakable baked goods, I do the mommy mutter all the way to the store.  Bobble-head is in tote, squee-ing over the idea that she's baking for her friends.  She settles on lemony cuppy cakes, lemon and strawberry icing.  When we return home, she sets about destroying the kitchen.  

Standard Operating Procedure for a teenage kid with a sweet tooth.

Anyway, late into the night, the smell of warm lemon wafts through the house.  I start in on the whole be-a-responsible-adult-thing. "Now, darling, you realize you need to clean this mess before you go to bed, right?"

"Yes, mommy!"  

"All right.  I'm off."  And so I go to bed fitfully.  Stupid cold, stupid congestion.

I wake up to a catastrophe of epic proportions.  Shuffling down the hall and by the kitchen, I realize all the lights are off, save for the artificial glow of the white yule tree beaming at me good morning.
Ugh.

I tap on doors now, waking kids, who probably should have been awake at least half an hour before me.  When I reach my teenager's room, I call off into the darkness.

"You awake?"

"Am now."

"Good....because man, you're gonna be late."

Then I proceed to explain to her that when I say the dishes have to be done before she goes to bed, garsh-dern-it, they have to be done before she goes to bed.  I'm not mean, but I'm like, "Really?  Seriously?  What part of dishes-before-bed got lost in translation?"

With a groan, she sets about hurriedly doing all of her morning getting ready activities at top speed.  During this time, the trooper doesn't really complain, she just focuses at what she's doing while I take her younger sister to school.  It's only a few blocks away, and by the time I make it home, the teenager is now at the end of the driveway, balancing two plates of cupcakes on one arm and has a cake carrier full of cupcakes on the other (and a jacket over that arm, and a backpack filled to capacity slung on her back).

"Can you drop me off at the JROTC building and then take me back to the main building so I'm not too terribly late?  I have a test this morning."

"Crud, what do I look like?  Your mom or something?  A taxi?"

She giggles a bit and tries to figure out how to squeeze into the autobot, so I roll my eyes and take the cake carrier with a long-suffering look.

As we make our way to the giant hamster playscape that is her high school, it is not uncommon for cars to stop on the main thoroughfare and drop kids off, holding up all of those diligent parents which drop our kids off at the specifically designated drop-off lines.  A kid pops out of the car in front of us and shuffles along hurriedly.  My daughter rolls her eyes and mutters a name.

"That kid has no integrity whatsoever."

I personally thought that comment might be a little harsh.  I mean, he's a kid, and I'm just one of those fools that believes most people are basically good people.

"What makes you say that, dear?  What is the definition of integrity?"

"Integrity is doing the right thing, even if no one is watching," she recites, being that it's part of the creeds and definitions and what have you that she has to memorize for JROTC.

"Hmm.  Well, what makes you think he doesn't have any?"

"He's always late, mom.  He never dresses the way he's supposed to, never tucks in his shirt.  And never has his badge.  And he's really disrespectful to other officers."

I thought of this a moment.  "You know, when I was ya'll's age," (I think I died a little when I said that) I said slowly, "I did the right thing when no one was looking.  But I didn't care much...for rules.  Like tucking in your shirt and stuff.  Why should there be a rule for how I dress?"

"But mom, there are gangs."

"Well....maybe there are gangs because people don't like to be told every rules for every single detail of their lives.  Maybe if there were less rules, there might be less rule breakers."

Yeah, I was kind of surprised that came out of my mouth too, as she looked at me (as I looked at her, as I tried to drive 20 down the street and not hit kids).

"Maybe."

So as she made her cuppy-cakes-like-drug-run drop-off, I thought about what I just said, and I thought about her responses.

My daughter wants to be a Marine.  To our family, and in regards to our friends, serving our country is an honorable thing.  We don't always necessarily agree with choices which are made, with war, but we do have a lot of respect for those that serve.  And while I applaud the idea that she is learning discipline, honor and courage, I also want to make sure that if she is going to follow along with the herd, that she is keenly aware of the exit gates conveniently located throughout the pen.  

As we grow older, our choices get distinctively and even more complex.  Add in the responsibility of guiding another person through the darkness with you, someone who depends on you (heck, I have two, and a partner in crime that is muddling along in the darkness with me), and it makes for a really insane run through the starless night.  Since 'perfect' isn't anyone on the horizon of my life or my person (Hell, I wouldn't be surprised if it had a  ghillie suit, bought itself a new identity, skipped down and was on the first boat to some uncharted island), I have a lot of those, "WTF ARE YOU THINKING?" moments.

This morning just happened to be one of those moments.

11.28.2012

the media


I realize that in the past few years, and more importantly, the last few months, that I rarely watch TV.  And rarer still, the news.

Sometimes, I flip it on in the morning, just to see the weather reports.  But I realize that it probably has about a %40 accuracy rate, so generally, I just don't.


About the only TV I seem to watch now is Netflix through my PS3.  Reason being is that I can watch a story (sit-com, drama, series, etc.) without interruption.  Or I can see a movie that interests me (on occasion...you should ask my husband or my friends how hard it is to get me to go watch a movie with them).

But mainly, I really just hate the fact that there are so many reports on bias media.  And how the media doesn't really objectively report anything.  And all you really see on there is death, destruction, and murder.  Every now and then, they make a shallow attempt at showing something meaningful.  On occasion, someone does.  But really, it has come to the point that no news is good news.

There's a lot you don't see on TV.  That's what you have the internet for.  But it's hard to get people to report what FOX or CNN or any of those channels won't report.  Kind of makes me hate the whole thing all together.

So between the word I get from friends, some select internet sights, and NOAA, I'm pretty set.

Sharing the Dreams