Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The "other" karaoke book...

Karaoke memories are unforgettable. Like the time I was at a scary Orange County bar full of rodeo clowns and Vietnam vets (no joke), and the bartender-cum-MC replayed a loop of me in the middle of me belting-out some Bonnie Tyler, yelling, "give it up, for Miss...ANNE!"

So give it up for Brian (and Mike)!
They rule and Brian's written the definitive karaoke history book (Mike provided pics). It is a must-have for anyone who's been asked to "stop throwing the mic and jumping on the sofas." Brian's Site.

Dry T-Shirt Contest #4

Between the historic presidential inauguration, the lunar new year, and a widely contested BCS championship, Super Bowl looks like a rerun of Saved by the Bell (i.e. ghey). Let's celebrate the most useless, underwhelming, out-done Super Bowl of football history with a t-shirt!

Any ideas for slogans?

PS: I'm only finally getting around to doing the Cucumber shirts, but "JON FROM HAWAII LONGTIME GR READER" who came up with these gems:

I pickle my own.

Is that a Japanese cucumber in your pocket or are you just Japanese?

I "heart" cucumbers (sexually).


...needs to re-mail me. Dibs.

bullies versus terrorists.

Some numbers from a NY Times article on Digital Harassment:

[Three high school girls] had sent nude pictures of themselves by cellphone to their teenage boyfriends, who were charged with possessing child pornography.

The legal consequences in this case may have been unique, but the behavior is not. About 20 percent of teenagers have posted or sent nude cellphone pictures of themselves, according to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, a nonprofit group.

Almost one in 10 high school students has been physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or girlfriend, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention research. And one-quarter of teenagers in relationships say they have been called names or harassed by their partner through cellphones and text messages, according to a study commissioned by the clothing company Liz Claiborne, which sponsors antiviolence programs.

About 39 percent of teenagers have sent sexual e-mail messages or instant messages, according to a 2008 study from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy and CosmoGirl.com.
(From NY Times)

Teenagers are the scariest mofos on Earth.

Monday, January 26, 2009

More Bat-Manga love

NPR's Day 2 Day digs Bat-Manga!

ill iterated npr!
(cf: Anne meets Roy Haynes)

Note to Listener: So that y'all don't go on thinking I am categorically incapable of PG-rated conversation, I want to clarify that the producer of the segment HAPPENED to edit me down to the phrase "I'm not unfamiliar with things that have the faint smell of male sweat and tears and blood..." which comes from a longer (complete) statement on how much more special the Kuwata comics were than the collected whole of the antiquated aspects.

Now, where was I...ah yes, researching "bara manga"...

Friday, January 23, 2009

gung hei fat chance

Happy Year of the Ox y'all.
(pic: Gigazine)

Obama in a Kotatsu (via TM)

I want.

Short notes on the Easy 10

I'm no film buff, and I've only been to advance screenings when asked to unchi on exoticist plotlines, but a film editor once told me, "anyone born in the last century can judge a good movie. Anyone." I'm taking that to heart when I talk about last night's Easy 10 showcase.

The event was fun. The gift bag was lame. Sorry Scion, but if you're going to waste natural resources making 3XL T-shirts that say "customize or die," why don't you just set fire to a pot of gasoline? (sigh) The Ugly T-shirt is the new postcard/flyer/sticker. At least you can recycle paper goods. What the heck am I going to do with a T-shirt the size of a sleeping bag with a dog on it?

It's telling that half of the featured short films last night were about music. Not complaining, of course. It wouldn't have made more sense for the films to be about dance, or cuisine, or... cars that look like baseball caps... God bless marketing the dissociative fugue. But popumentaries are always exercises in idolatry. I suppose "homage" is the better word to describe these films, as I did not really learn anything about music.

And I knew it would be good, but congratulations on Eric and Sheldon on a rad film really well done. Sheldon definitely blew everyone out of the water in direction, for my 2 cents. The subject (the Sumidagawa bums in Tokyo who've literally crafted a way of life along the river bank) was zen altogether. Made me think of deadbeat dads, and appropriately, left me at forgiving and pensive. Check out The Dwellers. (More from Eric)

In your face!book

Just as I'd started to get comfortable in my willfully defying facebook hegemony ...
Well, I've caved in to stay relevant instead of unique, only to find out
Facebook thinks I'm fat, poor, homeless and horny. Great.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Can the "can"

The ads in this morning's paper demonstrate that copywriters for luxury brands are completely brainless when trying to be relevant.
Cigar Aficionado. Gosh. I can't think of anything more relevant than overpriced instruments of celebrating excess, but can't fault whoever wrote this. Gitmo is finally going to shut. Light it up.

(Apologies for poor iPhone picture resolution--on the upper right corner is the tag line, "Yes, you can.")
Harry Winston. "Yes, you can"? Seriously. Harry. What was going on in your karat when you approved this? "We just inaugurated our first black president. People are amped. LET'S EMPOWER THEM TO BUY DIAMOND RINGS."
This ad doesn't really offend me. I mean, what better TIME to talk about watches than during this TIME of "pride, promise and hope," right? I think I'm more annoyed that they think "time" is a powerful turn of phrase. You make friggin' watches that actually CAN'T tell time. Have you ever been able to judge time on the face of a Movado? Although I've parodied this phrase when uttered by wannabe b-boys, I think a simple, "It's time." would have sufficed.

[Ed.: This just in at The Hater. An ostrich-skin "Hope-Obama" clutch. takes. the. cake.]

Friday, January 16, 2009

Playlist 1549

A Playlist
1. I'm Like a Bird, Nelly Furtado
2. Wind Beneath My Wings, Bette Midler
3. Seven Swans, Sufjan Stevens
4. Eight Miles High, The Byrds
5. Carvin' the Bird, Charlie "Bird" Parker
6. Up Where We Belong, Joe Cocker
7. Flying Birds, The RZA

And some Zen:
David Attenborough with the Lyre Bird. Beautiful. (Thanks, Marshall)

How could the passengers tell the pilot was going to ditch the plane?
He had goosebumps.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


I've never seen the movie "Alive," but I can tell you that "Texas Chainsaw Massacre," "The Cook, the Thief, his Wife, her Lover" and "301/302" are all wonderful movies in part because they end in cannibalism. I especialy love "301/302," where the cannibalism is a homo-wonderful psychosexual act of symbiosis. In the movie, apartment 301 is inhabited by a lusty gourmand who lives to cook. Room 302 is inhabited by an anorexic child-abuse survivor who only eats vitamins. 301 and 302 hate, then love each other, then eventually make a pact -- 301 will eat...yes, eat...302. You know, to put her out of her depressed misery and spend the rest of her life inside her best friend's body?

Anyway, 301/302 is the only movie that makes logical sense of cannibalism, because the cannibalized human is treated like a comestable meat. She feeds on a vegetable-mineral diet free of all toxins. It's the purest kind of flesh, and the only kind that would taste good. In real life, humans would taste horrible because of all the toxins we ingest and store in our cells. If you think about it, most of the animals we eat are vegetarians themselves. It's bad enough they are shot up with antibiotics, but imagine if your hamburger were a chain smoking alcoholic. Yum.

All of this however, is just a preamble to why I think this is the grossest thing I've ever seen. Not simply because of its pervy nature (the wax darts don't bother me in an of...), but because the average dickwad is going to be chock full of toxins.

Furthermore, I don't think I'll ever be able to eat flan again.

"A Kanji Website for Foreigners"

Kanji Fandom is a conversion tool for "foreigners" (read: anglophiles). Type in your name and the site spits back a list of possible kanji configurations.

I entered "Poseur McDouchey" but apparently, some names are simply un-translatable (and in those situations they ask for an email address so someone can custom transliterate it for you).

Enter Your Name

Monday, January 12, 2009

Happy birthday H Murakami

The man unwittingly responsible for the career of many a Japanese-English translator, has just turned 60.

Happy Birthday Haruki Murakami.

Perfect way to celebrate his birthday and the new year: buy one of these things. I rate it just above a Gossip Girl soundtrack in "invitations to get slapped," but with it you'll never be far from a non sequiter about cats or ex-girlfriends. Nor will you be very far from the Japanese flag which adorns its cover...(did Random House UK do any research beyond inferring from his name that he's Japanese, when they made this thing?)

Tsukiji Re-opened to Tourists

Tsukiji market in the Japanese capital Tokyo had accused tourists of flouting hygiene rules and causing disruption with flash photography.

Some tourists had been caught hugging, licking and even riding the huge frozen tuna that are Tsukiji's most arresting sight, an official said.


Friday, January 9, 2009

It's only just occurring to me how audacious it was of Nip/Tuck to use a Kanye West song ("Flashing Lights") in a commercial for a show about the life of plastic surgeons... CONSIDERING HIS MOTHER WAS KILLED BY ONE.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Here Lies Your Manga

“When a child receives a copy of Manga Messiah from Santa, that is something they are going to cherish and keep."


From Tezuka's "Watashi no seisho monogatari"

Monday, January 5, 2009

Overheard on the bus

This has to be the best thing I've overheard on NY Mass Transit in 2009 so far:

[Scene: A group of black teenagers on their way home after school. They're making fun of each other. A lot of fat jokes and then some pretty funny bad breath jokes (my personal favorite: "your breath smells like my dick"). One of the boys starts talking about how much he likes "Candace."]

Candace is so fine...if it was 4am and she said she was hungry, I'd cook my cat!

My last post on C-Anne-ada

CANADA: above it all.

It's official. The ill iterate "Canada" shirt.
(Also, free t-shirt to anyone who can teach me how to take pictures.)
Note: I now accept PayPal payments.

je suis un taureau

I happened to read my astrological forecast for 2009 in a French-Canadian entertainment weekly while in Montreal, which went something like this:

In the U.S. Constitution, black people were only considered 3/5ths a (white) person. Then finally they were emancipated and became whole. Like black slaves, you can consider yourself whole in the new year.

Granted this translation is from memory, but what a strange metaphor. Here's another translation:

In case you don't understand what it's like to be undermined, diminished, disenfranchised or discriminated against, here's an example: American Slavery.


Saturday, January 3, 2009

Tech Detox, Food O.D.

You've all read the stories: cell phones cause brain cancer, computers make you antisocial, Americans work more hours of the day than they admit in their 9-2-5s, we don't know how to vacation properly. I usually find these stories a little insulting to the millions of people who work because they both want and have to (except that, well, cell phones really are pretty gnarly). But I'm insulted because happy living in the city means someone's always working. If it's not you, it's the person working for you. And I know, it's not like that in the countryside, but I hated living in population 300 middle-of-nowhere-France precisely because absolutely nothing was open on Sundays. Yadda yadda, complain complain complain...

Well, last year I gave in to similarly "insulting" anti-smoking campaigns and things are pretty awesome. So this year I gave in to "technology-exile" and went to Montreal without a computer or PDA. I couldn't believe how freaked out I was for the first few days, but after a week of "technology detox" I feel like, well, I feel just like I did after I quit smoking:


Now, Montreal. Why Montreal? Because spending Canadian dollars looks and smells and sounds like spending American dollars, but feels like a million (and four hundred seventy thousand) bucks? Because the Quebecois speak French and then repeat themselves like obsessive-compulsive rainmen in English? Maybe it's the sub-Farenheit days followed by sub-Celsius nights. All of it was worth it, but the thing that made Montreal extra special (extra spécial) was animal fat.

Day 1: Le Club Chasse et Pêche
By recommendation, I start with grilled octopus, then order the duck rissotto and panache de légumes, but by the second bite of my rissotto, I want to cry. It's been cooked in duck fat, duck meat, then covered in fois gras shavings and topped with a friggin' duck rind. Yes, deep fat-fried duck skin.

Day 2: Au Pied de Cochon
By recommendation, I start with an "appetizer portion of the lobster special." Half a humongous lobster, stuffed with buttery grits, nuts and mashed potatoes. Then my main course: duck in a can. Hu-what. The. Fuck. Potato purée (mashed butter with a little starch, as far as I'm concerned), topped with a whole duck breast rendered in an inch-thick layer of its own fat, sauerkraut and carrots cooked in duck fat and maple syrup, and on top of the whole thing is an entire fattened liver, the size of a moleskin notebook. AND A SIDE OF FRIES. Delicious, yes, but after a couple bites of it... I want to cry again. It was like having a urinary tract infection. You know it probably felt good getting there, but once you're in pain, it's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and soon you're just sitting on the can waiting for some of it to come out.

Duck fat is the Ron Jeremy of Quebecois cuisine.

Day 3: Bière
Nothing quite as ridiculous as the past two nights, but it's still "all-ou-can-eat-mussels." You can just imagine. At this point, I'm feeling like a leathery hole and can't feel anything. I'm half-numb from the cold and alcohols. Deep fried sushi? Suuuure. Poutine? Psshh, whaa d'hell nawrt. Djess puttit in my faissss.

Americans are the gang bangers of all food.