Thursday, December 18, 2014

christmas time

My family has three Christmas traditions. By my family I mean, Andy and I. Since, both of our extended families don't really have a tradition, (unless you consider, my mother being an absolute emotional terror or Andy's mother celebrating the winter solstice in her beautiful pagan goddess way.) We made our own traditions and every year we get more excited about them.

1. We make print our own obnoxious Christmas cards. (This year's Christmas card)



2. I make a yearly scrapbook as a gift to ourselves. (Here are some images of the Christmas pages from scrapbooks past, which includes old Christmas cards.)







3. We eat Chinese food buffet at all kinds of weird hours. (I don't have any awesome pictures for this so Instead I found this instead. PS - I'm Buddhist.)


Friday, December 5, 2014

animated

I thought I would do a blog post made up entirely of random images (all from the junk folder on my desktop) to express how my holidays are going so far.





and finally...

Thursday, November 20, 2014

i hate acronyms

Hate may be a strong word.

Revision: I strongly dislike acronyms (and initialisms for those that know the distinction)

They are a plague on my literal mind. Every time I see them, via text or in my email, my mind grinds to a halt. JK? LOL? YOLO? Why are there so many and why do we use them so much?

My first experience with "not understanding acronyms" was in sixth grade. I remember it like it was yesterday. A friend of mine gave me a picture of her marked on the back with her phone number and the letters KIT. I was baffled. KIT? Was that a nickname? A code of some sort? Did she hand me something that actually belonged to this Kit person? Later, (and after much nagging) she informed me it meant "keep in touch". I could see in her eyes that she regretted that message because of my obvious lameness.

My second experience was during the heyday of AOL. The irony of AOL being an acronym for America Online does not evade me. Anyway, I was in some some chat room and a person keep tying LMFAO. Which, to my embarrassment, I thought was some sort of slang term for about llamas. You can imagine my confusion.

At least it wasn't ROFL (I pronounce this like waffle) which hits my top ten of most hated acronyms. You are rolling on the floor laughing? Really? I think not. You may be remotely amused. Even smiling. But you are not ROFLing.

So, I have taken to responding to acronyms by inserting my own meaning and responding to that.

Example:

Them - "I've been in a LTR for so long IDK what to do."

Me - "My God! You've been in a live trampoline riot!? I don't know what that is but invite me next time! Also, I Donkey Kong too. No worries. "

Thursday, November 13, 2014

vegetarian holiday

It's almost Thanksgiving and I am figuring out what I want to do for the holiday. We aren't traveling this holiday so we will be laying around the house like a bunch of bums. The fun part is figuring out what I'm making this holiday, as this will be our first vegetarian holiday. Not vegan yet, sorry.

I have collected some recipes together and made some adjustments.

My main dish will be Seitan Roast with Old Fashioned Stuffing.

I am borrowing the seitan part of this recipe from Keepinitkind.com. Then, I am changing the recipe to make the roast into a stuffed roll. The stuffing is also a grabbed from a Campbell Soup Recipe Book. Random, but I wanted a similar taste to the flavor I got from using giblets and I have used this recipe before when lazy.

Photo Courtesy: IsaChandra (Theppk.com)

 



Seitan Roast


Wet Ingredients

2 cups crimini mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 2/3 cups vegetable broth
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tsp liquid smoke

Dry Ingredients

2 cups vital wheat gluten flour
2/3 cup chickpea flour
½ cup nutritional yeast
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried sage
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375F, and prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the garlic cloves a few times and then add the mushrooms. Pulse until the mushrooms are in small pieces, no bigger than ¼ inch long/wide. Pour the mushrooms and garlic into a small bowl and add the other liquid ingredients. Mix to combine.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and use a wooden spoon to mix them together as much as possible. Once you can no longer use your spoon, use your hands to knead the dough until it comes together into a ball.
  5. Set out 2 pieces of aluminum foil, each about 16-18 inches long. Lay them out so that one overlaps the other, horizontally, by about 5-6 inches. Lightly spray the aluminum foil with olive oil spray.
  6. Roll the seitan out into a square on the foil, about ½" thick if possible. It may be thicker than that in spots.
  7. Pile the stuffing into a wide line the center of the seitan, and press it down slightly to compact it. Carefully fold the seitan over the stuffing and pinch together the ends and seam.
  8. Using the foil, turn the roast into a huge "Candy" by rolling it length-wise then grabbing the loose foil and twisting it until tight. Be careful not to tear the foil.
  9. Place your roast onto the baking sheet and bake it for 50-55 minutes, turning it 90º every 15 minutes. The roast should be slightly firm.
  10. Take it out of the oven and unwrap the foil, halfway, making sure not to tear the roast. Bake it for an additional 10 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Let cool for 15 minutes before serving.
  11. Serve with a side of gravy or vegetable broth, to add more moisture.

Old Fashioned Stuffing


1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon McCormick's poultry seasoning
1/2 teaspoon pepper
4 tablespoons butter (I use Organic Earth Balance Spread)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of mushroom soup (or make your own cashew cream of mushroom soup)
1/2 cup dried cranberries (optional)
8 cups dry bread cubes (I used bread that I made)

Instructions

  1. In skillet, cook celery and onion in butter.
  2. Add soup, blend well and set aside.
  3. Cube bread and season evenly with salt, pepper, poultry seasoning, and cranberries.
  4. Combine wet and dry mixtures by folding ingredients.
My side dishes are as follows and taken from various recipes around the internet. I have made minor adjustments to each recipe for health reasons. I don't feel the need to share those but you can make any adjustments at will.

Swiss Chard Gratin (Be sure to use non animal rennet Parmesan.)
Sweet Potato Mallow (Use vegan marshmallows and be prepared for them to melt slower)

Saturday, November 1, 2014

i'm not homeless, i'm just awesome


I'm not homless, I'm just awesome by definelulu

Everybody knows I dress in two distinct fashions. One being various levels of greys, blacks, and browns, layered to give me an almost apocalyptic look. OR many levels of clashing, with patterns and colors that shouldn't go together. So, that is what this collection is for. My current autumn clashing interests, which focus on hideous faux coats and loud sequins skirts.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

fishy smalls

Andy got the first half of his birthday gift today.

A fish!

Basically, he once had a Betta fish named, The Eighth (It was a King Henry Betta so he thought tit would be funny.) This fish lived for like ten years. Which is a ridiculous lifespan for a Betta. Long story short, Andy always dreams about his next Betta. 

We found a beautiful marbled white Betta and purchased the Aquafram Tank from Backtotheroots. It is a wonderful fish tank kit that includes everything you need to start-up except the fish. We of course, added our own flair and water heater for maximum fish happiness.

The cool thing is I live in an apartment with terrible natural light and I have had no problem growing wheatgrass with the tank. Plus, our little fishy's tank is nice and clean.




Sunday, October 19, 2014

5 DIYs for Halloween


This is a super simple DIY tutorial brought to you by blogger Delia Creates. Even though I sew, I love the idea of anything that requires minimal effort.


If you are like me and live in an apartment building that is surrounded by rogue alley-cats that destroy everything, then the idea of carving pumpkins and putting them outside is a "no go". Why not buy a bunch of plastic pumpkins and paint them with personality? This one is a set of 15 DIY Painted Pumpkin tutorials from The Nest.


When I saw this I thought to myself, "DAMN IT!! WHY DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT!" And yes, it was internally versed my loud inside-my-head voice. This tutorial comes from Moms and Munchkins. It includes the full cookie recipe as well, but I have a feeling the lazy of us ladies will be using tube cookies.


This one comes from How About Orange. And I know it is almost totally reusing the spiderweb cape idea. However, I like this way better than spreading around that insane plastic-cottony-fiber-mess all over the place. If I don't like walking through real spiderwebs, why would I walk through fake ones? Huh? Answer me that!


And last but not least. Pineapple Jack-o-Laterns!!

I just plain like this. I really don't know how well it stands up to the test of time. I'd imagine that it becomes a giant mess after a day. However, for anyone that lives in a warmer climate (such as myself) this would be a fantastic centerpiece for that, "Halloween Themed Luau" you always wanted to throw. Oh wait, that's me. Regardless, thank you to A Subtle Revelry for this and other Halloween ideas on her page.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

say no to sex, drugs, and cocoa puffs

Screw you, Chuck Zlosterman.

I read your book and it was one of the most well written pieces of self deprecating garbage I have ever read. And I read a lot of garbage. But what you've done with the book, Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs has currently placed you in second for my (drum roll please) "People-I-have-never-met-but-I believe-them-to-be-my-nemesis" list.

But hey Chuckie Chuck. I guess you did something right by aggravating me to the point where I felt it necessary to write my first book review.

First, I will point out that I did not purchase this book. Someone asked me if I wanted to borrow the book. What was their pitch? Oh, I'll tell you.

"Do you want to read this book? You can borrow it. It was terrible."

That should have been the first sign that I'd hate it.

It also took years before I even looked at it. I left it laying around my house, packed, moved, unpacked, let it lay around a second house and then only read it when my power went out. A.K.A. I was bored out of my freakin' mind.

Now, I read through the whole thing. At times I wanted to spike the literature out the window. However and like I said; it was well written. And even if I was fundamentally revolted by the content, I was willing to read something, "well presented".

Klosterman begins by complaining that no woman will ever satisfy him. Mostly because he's a moron and tries to be someone that he's not. But then he goes on and complains throughout the book by sharing his misguided beliefs on how it's the "cool kids" fault. Or Coldplays. Or whatever else? Because being published and being a senior writer for SPIN magazine is the epitome of uncool right Chuck? I suspect most of your problems actually have more to do with your inner struggles coping with "Man PMS".

Most of the book is tongue-and-cheek. He is a lone, vapid, hipster struggling to feel something and get life right. But with all his semi valid points and pop reference anecdotes, I found it disheartening that he spends a long time focusing on things like The Real World and Saved By The Bell. Then, in his next breath, he takes wonderful things and smashes them under his foot. And when you add the fact that he pieces it all together in a bizarrely fragmented contradiction, a looping bad record, I just can't take it.

I mean, seriously, Klosterman you sound like an asshole.

Friday, September 19, 2014

vibrational art

I just finished a painting that is going into a Metaphysical store. I am super excited about it. So much so, that I let Andy film me painting.


And here is the finished piece called, "Genfold Frequency".


Sunday, September 7, 2014

vegetarian

Today was an interesting day. It started out like any other day. Andy and I did regular errands, ate lunch, went shopping and then came home. We sat down to watch something on Hulu. And then it happened. A commercial changed Andy's life. There was crying and emotions. And after hours of calming him down it was clear, he had become a vegetarian forever. No meat. No fish.

Not, that I'm complaining. I've been trying to get us to eat that way at home for years. The big change is that we don't have to argue over restaurants anymore.

And what caused this you might ask?

Monday, September 1, 2014

ghosts of hair color past

I colored my hair today. Back to it's natural brown black color. My hair has been growing out at an insane speed (a little over an inch a month) so bleaching it and always having roots was getting ridiculous. So here is a nice montage of all my old colors worn over the last year or so.




Friday, August 29, 2014

strange messages

There is something about me that attracts bizarre attention. When I first told Andy this years ago, he told me that I was crazy. But after a variety of highly uncomfortable situations and almost getting attacked by a homeless woman that looked suspiciously like the girl from the movie the Ring. Andy agrees with the level of weird that finds me.

As such, I will now share a message I received from someone today.
Question what would you do if while returning home from being out and about... you found a tiny man only 6 inches tall as he hid in your purse and hitched a ride when you were not looking. The little man had to hide as he was eluding teenagers who were looking for him?
Do you think you would be tempted to keep him?


Do you think you would ask if he was in need of assistance?

Or do you think you would return him to the store as you want nothing to do with his situation?
And yes, I responded. I always do. 
Honestly? I'd scream.

I have an irrational phobia of leprechauns and little people.

Oddly, enough. If he could explain himself, and calm me down somehow. I'm sure compassion would take over and I'd try to befriend him.

Would I keep him? I don't think I'd consider him something to keep. Seems like a imprisonment in some way. But if he needed my help I'd try. If he needed a place to stay. I'd give it to him.

Yup.
WTF!? 

Monday, August 4, 2014

cuphead

EXCITEMENT!

If you haven't seen this trailer for this super awesome  sidescroller videogame then please watch. Cuphead is a new indie game that combines some of my favorite aspects; cartoons, retro, 1930's, animation, silent films, video games. Yes! I can't wait.


Monday, June 16, 2014

lisa knows best

I talk about my mom frequently. People that know me, know much of THAT story. The ups and downs. The ins and outs. My mother, Lisa, is a fascinating anomaly in my life. A woman that both frustrates me and inspires me.

One thing I have realized, is there was a time my mother was infinitely cooler than myself. Let's push away all her certifiable crazy and talk about one of those cool things she once did.

She has told me a lot of stories about The Safe House. A hangout of hers, in her younger years. The place has been around since the late sixties and is somewhat cheesy. However, there is nothing more awesome than local secret shrouded in spy paraphernalia.

On my next trip to Chicago, I'll have to make it a point to visit Milwaukee and see what all the hub bub is about.


Thursday, June 12, 2014

another throwback thursday

I used to travel a lot. I mean A LOT. Not international travel, as much as, always being in a different state. So, this throwback is from one of the many times I was in Vegas.

Yes, I am the girl in the "I <3 Beaver." sweatshirt. I got this sweatshirt in Beaver, Utah. I still wear it from time to time, even though it had an unfortunate rumble with some bleach. Behind this lovely group is the Excalibur. I was en-route to New York, New York.

It took me about thirty minutes to cross the catwalk and get from door to door. I was stopped every few seconds as if I was famous. People shook my hand. I got phone numbers. Someone even invited me to their room. These lovely people decided that a group shot was needed.

Note: I have no idea who any of them are and I never spoke to them again.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Friday, May 30, 2014

twitter feed

I have had a Twitter account forever. Well, since 2010. I guess four years feels like forever to me. The point is, it has taken me those four years to completely understand what that tweet thing is all about. Which means, it is on it's way out. Thank you, Snapchat.

Be that as it may, I will share something I found on the Twitter and also shamelessly beg for more Twitter followers.

Follow me.
Beg.

Now that, that is over with. I found the Twitter feed for www.textsfromlastnight.com/. The basic concept is that they post texts sent from the night before. But here is a quote explaining it from their website.

Texts From Last Night (TFLN) was founded in February 2009 by two friends for reasons that may or may not include: the tendency to press send more easily as the night turns to morning, friends' social habits, disgraced government officials, exes, law school, closing down bars and leaving tabs open, general debauchery and/or a common disgust for all the negativity surrounding the 'sexting' phenomenon.
We prefer texts, not conversations. We reserve the right to post portions of conversations without duplicating the entire thing. It's not because the entire thing isn't funny, but the funniest texts are those we can all relate to, so without the context of the conversation, they become really funny.
Our goal was to create a site that was revealing in nature while concealing the identity of everyone involved. This is why we only ask for an area code to accompany your text messages.
We don't want texts that are offensive to the point of being viciously personal, racist, exceedingly profane, violent or excessively graphic in nature. It's a very hard thing to judge, but we'll do our best.
Here are a few of my favorite texts from their Twitter feed.

(917): Trust no bitch in laser tag. Not a single one.
(989): Some male strippers are here, I threw pancakes at them. It's ok.
(610): I woke up with a thorn in my belly button. A THORN!
(585): No. Every time we go there, you end up getting high, then lost, then going home with strangers.
(843): My uterus is doing all sorts of karate moves to break free of my body.
(703): How'd the date with the redheaded dentist go? (Response 202): She didn't like my gingervitis joke.
(661): I'm sorry your Amazon says buttplugs now.
(731): I just farted so loud someone came to check on me. Thought something fell in my office.
(216): You did a body shot out of her belly button with a bendy straw.
(412): Your rough animalistic sex sounds are disrupting my cocktail hour.
(361): I'm two shots in and wandering around Barnes and Noble with $58 in singles.
(310): Sorry I punched you in the throat. You got in my way. You understand.

You are welcome. (I am aware you didn't thank me yet.)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

throwback thursday

When did that phrase come to be? Throwback Thursday. 

I suppose I could look it up but I am just too damn lazy to troll around the internet looking for answers. As if that two minutes of mouse-and-click googling is really going to set me back.

So, I guess I will post a photo in commemoration of today's reminiscence, that happens to be on a Thursday.

The back story? I had just got back from living in Los Angeles. It was winter in Chicago, but not particularly cold. That was nine years ago. 

I remember feeling out of place. I remember not caring that it was raining. I missed the cold rain of my home city. My friend let me borrow his hat and started taking pictures of me. I let him, which is unusual for me since I am not one to be in front of the camera. When I look at the picture, I can almost hear the ambient sounds of car tires splashing on the wet street.

And now, here is a list of other randomness that is gathering dust in my mind.

1. I talked to a stranger on Skype the other day. He tried to have cybersex with me and failed. Reason number one that he failed? He used the word  "knickers" as he is British. Even if I was in a sexual mood, and felt the urge to entertain such musings, it wouldn't be him. It would be Andy that I would want to please.

Not only was he a terrible conversationalist and completely single minded the usage of "knickers", it was also a sexual no-no. That term makes me think of large white granny panties, bed pans, and being fed mushed up bananas.

2. My low latent inhibition is getting worse. Which is an uncommon personality trait. The basics of LLI? You notice more, hear more, smell more and feel more through tactile contact. Without any conscious effort, your mind is in possession of a broader intake of information. Short story, LLI is making me impatient with people.

3. I actually had someone message me this, "Why are you 32?" I responded with, "That whole being born in 1981 and time thing." As it turns out, I was mistaken for a teenager. I am not sure if I feel complimented or offended.

4. A few days ago, I was accused of being "needy" and "too flirtatious" by a person I was talking to for the second time. It was because I was being polite and attentive. I sent them a link to something I thought they would enjoy. Apparently that meant, to their ego, that I was trying to steal their soul and marry them. Regardless of the fact I am so very taken and didn't say anything weird to them.

5. I spent fourteen hours writing today. Because of that everything I am saying is coming out with diction and pomp.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

the melting pot of variance

I have realized that a person needs variance. There is just something fundamentally genetic about the need to gain unique information. Without this newness, we become stagnant and bored.

This thought started when I considered the little things that have been indoctrinated into my personality from other people. A saying here. A habit there. A new food. A new idea. A new joke.

I am already prone to picking up random mannerisms and facts from others. However, I think we all in some way become a melting pot of the people in our lives. So when we meet a new person that interests us, it is that taste of something fresh that we are drawn to. A moth to a flame.

Anyways, I wish I would have realized this sooner in my life. I mean, I know all those lovely five second sayings that mothers dish out to their daughters.

"You are a direct reflection of the company you keep."

"Only surround yourself with people who lift you up not bring you down."

"Bad company, corrupts good character."

So on and so forth...

But, that doesn't change the fact that I now understand this on another level. 
 
Epiphany reached.

My new goal? Interact with as many people outside of my comfort zone as possible.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

goodbyes

I have a hard time saying goodbye. I naturally just don't see the point. 

At one time, this inability to say goodbye was so unconscious that I would just leave a social event unannounced. Yes, I am aware that is a rude. However, with all my other quirks it became a charming thing people would talk about in reference to me. 

"What happened to Lu?"
"Oh you know how she is...I wouldn't worry too much about it." 

Maybe I like leaving things open ended? Maybe I don't need closure? Maybe I don't need an ending? Maybe I just don't feel like stating the obvious? Maybe I think that a temporary goodbye is ridiculous? That wouldn't even be a goodbye would it? 

For that matter, If I didn't greet you when you were born, should I send a farewell when you die?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

hipster


So what defines a hipster? What is the mass idea? Am I a hipster too? In my urge to be sensible (and a bit anal) I have compiled a list from all over the internet of hipster things. Because I wonder in my old age......

1. You prefer to ride a bicycle or walk everywhere. I am guilty of this. Although, my bicycle tires have been flat for the last three years and the only reason why I walk is because I don't drive. I don't drive because I am bad at it. Plus, the seizures and depth perception is an issue.

2. You drink coffee. Also, guilty. Though, I think this one was a weird. A lot of people drink coffee. I suppose they are referencing the copious amounts of coffee hipsters drink? In that case, a lot of doctors and lawyers are screwed.  I don't drink much coffee and I like my coffee sickeningly flavored, creamed, and sugared. I also like tea and other beverages.

3. Wearing obnoxious glasses. I may be guilty of this one?  I have a fairly light prescription. It is very close to regular reading glasses. When I was younger, I used to collect weird vintage glasses and wear them. That was fifteen years ago. Now, I rarely wear glasses and I can't see shit.

4. You are a part-time DJ. Only if you consider the following a "part-time DJ". Me, huddled on my computer, in my back room, making mixes, and sharing them with no one.

5. Flannel. Not guilty. I originally avoided flannel because I am allergic to wool. Now I avoid it because I live in Texas and don't want to look "too country".

6. You have a beard, and if you are a girl you wish you did. Nope and nope. I don't like beards. I like scruff on the right guy, but not beards. Never have. Never will. Also, I get these three little black hairs on my chin that I battle back with morning beard checks and my trusty tweezers.

7. You immediately give up on any band, the second a single other person hears about them. No, I pretty much stick to the music I enjoy. Dedicated.

8. You have a blog. HA!

9. You are vegan, vegetarian, or organic. I am strictly none of these. I eat vegan and vegetarian. I am not that much of a meat eater. Never have been. But, I eat meat at times. I also have some organic stuff in my kitchen but I have everything else too. What it comes down to it, feeling good and having a happy belly is all that matters to me. I love many types of food. Shitty. Good. Organic. Chemical filled. Trendy. Fast Food. Whatever.

10. The Urban Outfitters paradox. I go there to window shop. Sometimes I get clearance books. However, I find that hipsters are torn on this subject. They want the clothes. The don't want the clothes. They are upset that Urban Outfitters is stealing from them. They are happy they can go to one place to get their over priced clothes. They are upset that most the stuff there is made in China. They are upset that it's not from China. They are upset. Relax man, it'll be alright.

11.  You go to art shows. Not so much. As an artist, who has a stage fright issues, I have a problem with experiencing art shows. 

Patron: What does this piece mean?

Me: What?

Patron: It seems to represent the complexity of  the human condition.

Me. Sure.

It's art. It's relative and unique to the experiencer. I am not going to explain it because that would ruin the point. The experiencer makes it their own thing. So, the few times I happen to end up at an art show. I eat as much snacks as I can and do everything to "not talk about art".

!2. You dress like a hobo. No, I don't. Sometimes, I dress like a Polish Christmas tree. That means lots of color and bold patterns. Or I dress layered modern goth. That means not ridiculous, no black lipstick, but definitely a darker style.

13. You live in Portland, Silverlake, Austin or NYC. No...but...I have considered moving to both Austin and Portland. Austin was too hot and Portland was too wet. I never had interest in moving to New York City. I was leaving Chicago to get away from, "the big city.". Why would I move to a bigger one? I spent some time in Silverlake. The people I hung out with were more of the, "people you might find at a fetish club" variety than the hipster variety.

14. You feel emotionally connected to this picture. I don't. I like Apple. I also like Linux. I also like Microsoft. I am not racially selective of my technology. The velocipede is cool in a steampunk sort of way. But, I wonder why someone would go to a computer store on a vehicle that would be pretty useless on a haul trip.




15. You get offended when someone calls you a hipster. Also, no. I have never been called a hipster. By the fact that I am seriously considering if I am a hipster and willing to accept it....it should be clear I am not offended.

...

Mind you, I have done this with every sort of "stereotype" popular labels at the time. I am indifferent to labels as long as they aren't hurtful.  I just wonder if a day will come that I will find a stereotype that makes me say...I HAVE A PEOPLE!

Monday, April 21, 2014

annals of my history

I am going through all my archives and updating my online presence. It has to be the most boring and tedious process known to man. What is even more super duper awesome is that my computers can't seem to handle the sudden misuse. I am having to stop to patiently wait for my tech to catch up with me.

Now, what do I mean by archives? The photo below will show you my picture archives of my photography categorized by year and/or project.


I have DVDs upon DVDs of old art, photography, music, writing, etcetera. That doesn't include the terabyte of information shared on my hard drives or the crap I need to scan. At least I have everything clearly labeled and organized.

I guess I shouldn't have procrastinated for the last ten years.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

the blood moon

Did you miss the first "blood moon" eclipse? I sure didn't. I was out there at 3am gaping at the sky. I have already marked my calendar for the next one. October 8th of this year. If you missed it, here is a redo.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

happiness.

I am happy.

I have always been happy. Even in the darkest pits of hell; I have been happy. No, not like maniac happy. Not that "ridiculous grinning like a mad-hatter happiness". True happiness.

And what the hell does that mean? True happiness?

Happiness is wealth and by wealth...I mean, all satiable needs have been met. Did you notice the word "needs"? That's key. I think to be able to have wealth you need to be able to distinguish between "need" and "want". Not that monetary wealth isn't nice. It is. Makes certain things less stressful.

Happiness is love. You know all that Oprah, self-love, affirmation stuff. That's a part of it. Loving is a way that provides yourself and thereby all things around you the love. When you are filled with this kind of love it just creates a state of happiness that blooms from you inherently. Oh yeah and general compassion, blah blah blah.

Happiness is the ability to live once removed. We all know that when others treat you like shit and the world is destroying itself, it is difficult to be happy. When your boss yells at you or your girlfriend is a complete cunt...How do you handle that? Scream? Fight? Passive aggressiveness? My usual response is to accept it for what it is and move on. It is really irrelevant to have someone cut you off on the interstate. In the grand scheme things, that tiny blip -- that one human lifetime seems pretty ridiculous. So why lash out as if the all of existence is going to wipe out that "bad driver". Pointless.

Happiness is expression. We have this amazing capacity to create and inspire the world around us. So even when a person is down, expression through; art, music, laughter, whatever...has the ability to "grow happiness." That's real magic.

Honestly, I could keep going on. But, I think I made my point.

The sad part is, I know my fair share of depressed people. Clinically and otherwise. It's a damn epidemic if you ask me. Which you didn't so

...I'll go back to being happy and whatever.


Sunday, March 23, 2014

hairdo

I have been waiting impatiently for my hair to get long enough for hairstyles that don't require tons of time. I have been eyeballing this hairdo forever and finally I have success. Now, I can tromp around and look like a real touch girl.



Monday, March 17, 2014

one of my tattoos

In my last post, one of my tattoos is visible. Someone asked what my tattoo said...

The simple answer? Ö-pa-me or od dpag med in Tibetan script. It means Infinite Light and is often used as the terminology for The Buddha of Infinite light a.k.a Amitābha a.k.a. The Red Buddha. a.k.a The Buddha of the Western Pure Land.

My tattoo story goes like this. When I was a child I'd imagine a light in me and outside of me. It was always there and I thought of it as somewhere in between an imaginary friend and the true image of my soul. I was in high school when I decided that my first tattoo would be the words "infinite light" to connect me to that side of my existence. The only problem was getting it in English seemed wrong. So I promised myself that I would get it in whatever language I happened upon that seemed appropriate.

When I saw Tibetan script as a mantra for the first time, I knew it had to be that script but at the time there wasn't a lot places I could go to make sure I didn't get the word POTATO tattooed to me. So I waited an scoured the internet.

Once day, I happened on a man named Tashi Mannox. He is an Englishman that became a monk and studied Tibetan calligraphy under a Tibetan master. At the time he wasn't very well known except with in the Tibetan Buddhist community. Now, he is quiet successful in his art. I contacted him and received a personalized calligraphy from him, with the understanding that I would have it as a tattoo.

 

I get a lot of comments on the tattoo. A lot of questions. Most the time people assume it's script from the Lord of the Rings. Which I find amusing. 

But, the longer I have it, it seems the deeper the meaning evolves for me. First, I'd like to say that infinite light is something I see as a part of my soul and like a conscious. A Jiminy Cricket if you will. I got the tattoo predominately on my neck to the right side because I saw it as something protective, that could whisper knowledge in my ear. That may sound esoteric but it was a vague thought. Another reason I chose it to be so visible is that it is believed that the Tibetan script is sacred and can bless anyone who sees it. One of the interesting things about the Buddha of Infinite Light is that this Buddha is said to have made a promise. That if you remember his name you will be reborn in the Pure Land, which could be compared to a kind of heaven, In theory, just by having the tattoo perhaps I am sending the gift of heaven to anyone who sees it. 

There is a lot more little things that surround the tattoo, but you get the idea.

Here is a old close up of it.




Wednesday, March 12, 2014

another hair color

After waiting a year to be able to order a restock of Special Effects hair dye, I finally got to order one of the colors I use. I purchased the color Blue Haired Freak and was happy to dye my hair immediately. I mixed it with Deep Purple and a ton of conditioner to create this pastely purple denim color. Now, all I have to do is wait until I can reorder the Fishbowl color and I will be set for another year.

Get it together Special Effects! You are my favorite hair color provider!


Thursday, March 6, 2014

oil slick iridescent

I find it beautiful when oil means water. The colors are amazing. All that opalescent peacock coloring. I wish it wasn't terrible for the environment.But I still think it's gorgeous.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

the thrift store

I have an enduring love for thrift stores. I think it was bred into my family line. My grandmother took my mother to the thrift stores. My mother, in turn. took me. Not that she had much of a choice. I grew up ridiculously poor. One step away from homeless poor to give you an idea.

I have long since surpassed the need to shop second hand. But, now when I go to a regular store I have a hard time. I am usually annoyed by the terrible music playing over my head. Then, I am displeased with the people asking me if I need help. Note to my audience: Do not hold out your arms and flail saying I demand to be dressed. It gains an odd reaction. Then, there is all the superfluous retail decor. How does one shop this way?

For myself, I like the hunt. Walking through the bare-bones mixed aisle of the thrift store. Running my hands over all the items; each having their own history. I become a predator. An eagle for hand-me-downs.

I will adopt you, sweater. I will take you home and love you the way you should be loved. You don't have to hang on this rack, with all these other ugly sweaters. You can tell me your stories and keep me warm. We will be symbiotic. We will be master and servant  We will bond.

Okay. Maybe that is a little extreme but this is what happens inside my head.

So, imagine my surprise when just the other day I was speaking to someone and they told me they don't like thrift stores and would never shop at them.

"Why don't you like them?" I asked with a degree of self indulgent curiosity.

"The clothes smell."

I laughed and made a judgmental expression "You wash the clothes before you wear them and if something smells that awful, don't buy it."

"Well, it's just gross. I prefer shopping at regular stores where the clothes are clean."

I sighed and smiled my usual mischievous grin "You do realize that the clothes that you buy from the store are most likely full of more chemicals and toxins than most clothes at the thrift store?"

"I like chemicals."

And that, my friends, is when I ended the conversation. That night, I went straight to the thrift store as an act of pure rebellion and maybe a little self reassurance.

I know. chemicals make up a lot of things. I mean chemical reactions create much of the processes that are required to live. But I am pretty sure she meant that she likes the smell of polyester and plastic. 

To conclude my little rant, I will post Thrift Store by Macklemore. Not because I am a huge Macklemore fan. But, if I were a male hip hop artist, I would have probably made this song myself but with less "big cock" and more melodic harmony.



Thursday, February 20, 2014

moldavite

So, there is this crazy green rock stone stuff called Moldavite. I am drawn to this stuff. It reminds me of glass, but it's shaped naturally. Rumor is, the stone was formed by an impact of a meteorite that hit the Earth and is only found in a specific place in the Germany, Czech Republic vicinity.

I ended up purchasing a necklace with it and although I don't think it is particularly fashionable, I can't stop wearing it.

There is speculation that this stone is spiritually aligned and I must admit I have been having some pretty glorious dreams since I have been wearing it. 

Here is a little tidbit from Wikinut:
"The most common effect I have seen when a person holds Moldavite for the first time is a tingling sensation in the hand and up the arm, which often spreads throughout the body and causes a flushing of the face. This is called, 'The Moldavite flush.' Some feel heat emanating from the stone or energy jolts in different parts of the body. There are some people who have told me that it made them feel extremely relaxed when they first held one. This is less common, but it does happen. It varies from person to person, but most people, even the ones who aren't usually sensitive to stones, can feel Moldavite when they first hold it. Faceted jewelry can intensify these effects. 
If you choose to work with Moldavite, start off slowly. Pay attention to how you are feeling. Many people feel light headed and a bit spacey when they first start wearing this stone. Just remember that your body is adjusting to a higher vibration. Start off wearing it for 20 minutes a day and build up from there. It's also not a good idea to put it in your bedroom or near your bed at night when you first get it, as it can disrupt your sleep. As your body adjusts to the frequency of this stone, you will be able to wear it comfortably all the time.
Moldavite can help to enhance the effect of other stones, especially, Amethyst, Aquamarine, Black Tourmaline, Citrine, Charoite, Hematite, Lapis, Larimar, Rhodochrosite, Sugilite, Smokey Quartz and Tanzanite and has a tendency to supercharge any stone you pair it with. It can be particularly helpful to use Amethyst, Black Tourmaline, Hematite,Smokey Quartz or Tiger Iron with your Moldavite if you are feeling spacey in the beginning. These stones can help you to feel more grounded and balanced during your adjustment period. - Carol Kinsman"


Monday, February 17, 2014

let's talk about airplanes

After 9/11, everyone was terrified of flying.

Well. not everyone...

I was eager to fly. In fact, I speculated that it was the safest time to fly. Therefor, I was buying super discount round-trip airfare all over the country for months. I didn't have my passport. So, I couldn't leave the country. However, I took as many weekend getaways as possible.

This gave me a taste for flying. For airports. For turbulence. I love turbulence. For cabin movies. For those cardboard pretzels. For all of it.

Needless to say, I love to fly.

So, I was delighted when I had to fly to my hometown Chicago. In the three days I was there, I got a cumulative six hours of sleep. I saw and I conquered. I won't go into the twists and turns of my adventures. I'll just let you know I had a great time.

When I was leaving Chicago there was a little snafu because of snow. Was I concerned? Not really. In fact, even when I saw this departure board - I was at peace.

All the yellow on the the boards are delays or cancellations.


I just went to my gate area and watched the airport people slowly keep the snow away.



Everyone was grumpy and wary. But I have to say it was one of the most peaceful days I have had in a long time. Thank you airplane. You made my day!

Monday, February 10, 2014

sacred geometry


Yup. I have been into sacred Geometry since I was a child. I saw a Nova documentary at the age of maybe ten years old about the fractal universe and it was all down hill from there. Recently, I have noticed it is hip and cool, so I thought I would make a little hip and cool sacred geometry post.

P.S. Golden Mean

Saturday, February 8, 2014

need this record