Archive for August, 2008

August 29, 2008

agIsh: Rock Out with My Sock Out

As I look forward to my Fall Semester, I seek comfort in the small things. Here is a list of songs that really gets my head bobbin’ and generally bring up my spirits. If I actually had the respect of my peers (bg included) I’d be worried about losing it after this list. However, since I don’t, here they are in no particular order:

  1. “Love At First Sight” – Kyle Minogue [video]
  2. “Rock Your Body” – Justin Timberlake [video]
  3. “Kiss On My List” – Hall & Oates [video]
  4. “Toxic” – Britney Spears [video]
  5. “You Are My High” – Demon vs Heartbreaker [video]
  6. “By Your Side (Neptunes Remix)” – Sade [video]
  7. “I’m In Heaven” – Jason Nevins featuring Holly James [video]
  8. “Reminiscing” – Little River Band [video … this video fucken rocks, by the way]

Sure I could’ve chosen a less gay list but how interesting would that article be? I challenge you to listen to these songs and come away less happy! I’m sure there’s more to add to this list but it’s about 2 in the morning and I can’t think of any more. And I figured since I had the bug I might as well post something or else laziness would’ve gotten the best of me.

nv@ag

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August 18, 2008

agIsh: Back In My Day… Special First Edition!
(“First” indeed implies more are to come!)

Welcome to “Back In My Day”, an article I will use to vent my frustrations with the current state of the world from the point of view of an old man. Sure, I was born in the late 70s and suckled on the teets of Transformers, Hall and Oats, and ring pops, but that doesn’t mean that time can’t beat my mind and body into a leathery pulp! What do you know, anyway? You’re just a kid!

Back in my day, we used to trust cops. I remember fondly my D.A.R.E. program in 5th grade. D.A.R.E., for those of you who associate CGI with the “original” Transformers Movie and think that the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage has always been at Disneyland, stands for Drug Abuse Resistance Education. This was circa 1986 when “Just Say No” was at its peak, when drug use was purely recreational and no one had glaucoma or arthritis to alleviate.

Yes, I suppose you could say it was a sort of utopia.

D.A.R.E. programs were usually taught by policemen (this was the unisex term we used before the coining of “cops”). My policaman’s name was Officer Peña. As you can guess by the name, he was latino, most likely mexican, spoke english well, and was respected. The ability to speak english and having the respect of others are mutually exclusive…in this instance, that is.

During my D.A.R.E. stint, I learned that drugs are things other than food that you take into your body that messes with your head. I learned what can happen when drugs are introduced into your body. I also learned effective methods in combating peer pressure.

…in related news, I’ve tried marijuana several times since and have been in a drunken stupor more than I can remember and have enjoyed these experiences immensely every time.

The point of all this is that Officer Peña was a nice man, fun, and trusted by all! At no point did I feel that I was going to be body checked while riding my bike [story]. At no point did I feel that I would get my head bashed in for spilling water [story]. I’m sure police brutality isn’t a new invention but it does seem to have escalated and spiraled out of control recently.

This isn’t all surprising when you think about who it is we’re “trusting” here. I’m inherently not trusting at all. It takes quite some time for me to trust anyone and, once earned, that trust has to be maintained. Last I checked cops are people too and using the simple “if A = B and B = C” method I learned back in my day, I am not to trust cops – they have to earn it. We’ve appointed…no, others have appointed these people to put on uniforms, carry guns and batons, and protect us. I don’t recall getting this run by me. What if this dude really doesn’t like asians, is really having a bad day, and finds me bumping Coltrane in my bad ass Camry? I’m effed, straight and simple.

Here’s an interesting video series that’s entitled simply “Don’t Talk to Cops“. This may be second nature to many of you, but this is something I’ve had to unlearn since my days of D.A.R.E.

Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m not encouraging cop-bashing. I’m not saying I hate cops. I’m not saying “eff the police”. I am saying that cops are people too. Do with that as you will.

My Thundercats DVD just came in the mail – I will chegg you later.

nv@ag

August 5, 2008

agIsh: Comic-Con 2008

A wise man is once quoted as saying: “Do you remember when we fell in love – we were young and innocent then. Do you remember how it all began – it just seemed like heaven…so why did it end?” He went on to produce other insightful pieces entitled “Rock With You”, “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”, and “Billie Jean”. These words are fitting for this year’s Comic-Con, which was held in San Diego, California.

I’m not sure what it was; after all, it fit the formula…

There were costumed weirdos:

There were the latest and hottest sights:

There were women to ogle at:

(Does anybody know who the girl on the left holding the Chopper Zombie book is, by the way? She’s effin’ gorgeous. Tell her I want to have her children. Like me, literally carrying her children all nine months to term. That’s how much I love her.)

Even the ever-elusive Darth Maul was there:

…and in spite of all this, something felt not-quite-right, something was missing.

I was gung-ho upon entering the Convention Center, as I am every year, and was once again overcome with vertigo – as I am every year – as my mind tried to take in all 100 acres of comic book paraphernalia, media hype, and fanboy-ism.

Wait! That was it! Our entrance into the Comic-Con was far too easy! Previous Comic-Cons gave visitors the opportunity to purchase passes on site the day of. The result was hours of waiting in line that I’m sure snaked back into Orange County…but you got in eventually and most of the joy and rapture was being able to walk in an air conditioned environment. Coupled with the sights, the sounds, and yes, the smells, the buzz was undeniable.

There were several goals I had set:
1) Attend a panel
2) Get some sketches
3) Get free ish
4) Buy lots of ish

1. Attend a panel
This was interesting. Aside from the main hall of vendors, the Convention Center also has countless rooms where talks of upcoming movie or comic book events take place. An associate of mine wanted to attend Marvel Comics’ Secret Invasion panel, wherein they’d talk about who was a real hero or an alien posing as a hero. Although interesting, it was way more fanboyish than I had anticipated. Writers and artists spoke for about 15 minutes while the remaining 45 minutes were dedicated to questions from the audience. “What if…”, “What happened to…”, “Is there any chance that…” Booooooring. I’ve always said “Try everything at least once.” Now that I’ve gone to a panel, I’ll never go to one ever again. Time would have been better spent among vendors and sweaty visitors. I give this a Pass minus.

2. Get some sketches
bg and I love sketches. We love sketches more than we love cleava…wait, I’m not gonna say something I’ll regret later. Let’s just say we really enjoy sketches. In years past, one could walk up to a man at a desk, command that he draw a picture for you, and he would have no say in the matter. You would walk away with a sketch and his pride in your possession to do as you see fit. This year was different. It seemed as though everyone was wise to this “eBay” and was charging ridiculous amounts of monies for a pencil drawing. One man had this posted on his table: “$20 – head, $40 – half a body, $80 – full body”. I thought to myself, “This is disgusting! What kind of a world do we live in where the Koreans roam free and a man feels that $80 for a pencil drawing is justified? Whatever “Jim Lee”, I’m outta here.” No, I kid. I wish it were Jim Lee. The rest of the story is true, I assure you. There were a couple of guys I was hoping to meet but didn’t catch them. Needless to say, I came home with no sketches. I give this a Fail minus.

3. Get free ish
This is one of, if not the highlight of attending Comic-Con. Vendors make items available at their booths and a riot insues. Hands without identifiable owners just grab the ish without asking and in minutes the table is empty! It’s great! As I said, this year was different…much less free ish this year. I grabbed one Green Lantern ring (they failed to mention that it’s just a plastic replica and doesn’t really work) and a Transformers Post-it note pad (this doesn’t tranform and is, in fact, just a Post-it note pad). Either I came too late to the Convention, everyone else was too fast, or the vendors were being tight but the free ish was few and far between. I give this a Fail plus.

4. Buy lots of ish
The opportunity to spend excessive amounts of money on ish that will mean very little to you several months later is enormous and I look forward to it every Comic-Con. My main target was a rare issue of Batman and I’m happy to report that I found it at a reasonable price. I also wanted to pick up other current issues and a maquette or two. Although I found the issues I wanted, the maquette was out of my price range (it retails for $90 but was going for $200). This last goal of “buy lots of ish” is where I got hit the hardest. Attending the panel killed an hour of my time and apparently lunch killed more time than I thought. Apparently the main hall closes at 7pm every year at which point the spending spree must end. bg and I hadn’t run into this time constraint the years we attended, so I was entirley unaware of it. At 6:30pm an announcement echoed over the 100 acres and I found myself backtracking wildly like a boar through my mental shopping list. Eh. There’s always next year I suppose. I give this a Pass minus.

Overall, it wasn’t the best Comic-Con experience I’ve had and now wonder if I’m over Comic-Con. Was the hype indeed too mudge? The only sure way to determine this is to attend Comic-Con 2009!

nv@ag

PS: Now that I think about it, I don’t think bg was with me either. I wonder where he was… *shrug* It’s all a blur to me now.