Lady and the Clamp

Last night I attended a post-christmas pre-new-years-eve party with Beth. It was being held over at my sister-in-law's home and was accompanied by a host of very tasty, at times even fancy, treats.

Now anyone who knows me also knows that I don't often react well to anything fancy. If the bow doesn't have a clip-on, then chances are it's going to end up tied around my head like a bandanna. Luckily, the food was delicious, but I ran into a problem when Beth and I wanted to try the pizza-like dish covered in delectible feta cheese. This particular entree was prepared on a thin crispy crust, one that would easily crumble upon the first bite.

Unsure of what to do in this situation, Beth and I decided the best course of action would be to eat it "Lady and the Tramp" style, with her starting on one end and myself on the other. This method would ensure tasty satisfaction for both partners, while also providing an endearingly sweet moment to share.

As she lifted up the pizza we both leaned forward and began to sink our teeth into the crispy episcenter of delicious cheeziness. Expecting a certain toughness to the crust, I was about to bite down as hard as possible when I experienced a warm and slightly rubbery texture in my mouth. Looking up, Beth's wide painful eyes met mine, and at that moment I realized I was not about to eat pizza, but was actually in the midst of gnawing off my girlfriend's finger.

Luckily, I stopped myself in time before I broke any skin, but not before we both ended up crying in a strange mixture of laughter, and in her case, pain.
It truly is a wonderful life.


Floating Hair Monster

I witnessed this inter-dimensional flying hair monster summon itself from the nether world whilst at my girlfriend's apartment. I have the feeling these beasts are going to start showing up everywhere. Sick. On the bright side, I don't think it has teeth, just lots and lots of hair.

The good news is that it seems to have fallen comfortably onto her pillow, where I assume it will remain. Either that, or it'll excrete some sort of unearthly dark matter. One way or another, I'm not going to be the one cleaning it up.



It's Exam Week

And I'm only one man.
So posting might be a tad light this week.

Oh but hey, it looks like the best movie ever is coming along nicely...



Keeping Up With the Chimes

The Biola Chimes, that is.
In case you don't know already, I have a new article up.

You can read it by clicking this text right here, right now.

This week it's about online gambling.


I don't know if they have online gambling in the form of Bingo, but if they do, MAN I am ON that.


Toot My Own Horn

The above is a schematic from a patent (US patent US4429685 to be exact) by Timothy Zell for a surgical procedure which magically, and by "magically" I mean kind of "insane-mad-doctor-ly," turns a goat into a Unicorn. Except this Unicorn clearly would not be a horse.
it would be, like, a Unigoat. But is that such a bad thing?

Well, yes, if you actually plan on doing something like that to an animal.
We here at the Awkward Unicorn don't promote the surgical implementation of horns without expressed written consent. Otherwise it's sticking to rolled up newspaper and superglue on the forehead.

Now if you excuse me, I'm going to try and catch our cat Stiggy.


Chirstmas Time (It's Practically Already Here)

This is what you get when you google "Christmas" and Hamster" in the same sentence.

Why would I do such a thing?
Because the deadline is coming up for the "World's Largest Christmas Gift Exchange," and right now it isn't so much as "large" as it is "reasonably sized."
You need to get in on it.
And then get all your friends in on it.

Sign Up Here For the World's Largest (uber) Christmas Gift Exchange Ever!

I suggest you stand by the water-cooler and casually mention it. All day long.


This Is How I Treat My Cat

If you're going to pet a cat, you must learn to BECOME the cat.

Stiggy spent last night gnawing at my toes. What was cute at first turned into blinding pain within seconds.


Meeting the Neighbors

I've been living in an apartment for about seven months now, so I suppose it's about time that I started meeting our neighbors. Up to last night the only notable interaction we've had with any outsiders have been listening in on fights between crazy people, that one evening where the apartment below us smelled like a hamster cage, and a few weeks ago when I walked past the guy who lives next door as I came down the stairs and he mumbled something along the lines of "howgoin?" Fortunately, last night a friendly fellow approached Jon and I as we basked in the greatness of the community hot-tub. Although I don't remember his name, he politely introduced himself after asking if we left the outdoor grill on. We hadn't, but luckily this served as a fantastic opportunity for our neighbor to grill up a few savory meat strips.
While they simmered, he struck up a conversation with Jon and I which began ruminating on his old smoking days, then turned to the lack of women roving around the apartment complex, then the joy of children, the pain of his ex wife, maybe wives, and then finally turned to his various motorcycle mishaps.
While turning the meat, Jon briefly questioned the man's sanity, but finally we settled on the fact that he was simply a nice, slightly drunk, and maybe a little unbalanced, older man. We liked him. Jon even accepted the man's offer of a bite of grilled steak.
I myself have not only made it a goal, but a rule regarding my own self preservation to not accept strangers meat, under any circumstances, especially when I'm in a hot-tub. It's not that I don't trust him, it's just a principle that has gotten me 21 years ahead in my life. Is that so wrong?

Cute Aminal of The Day

Mexican Walking Fish.

This is what I imagine would happen if the Cloverfield monster and a Pokemon had a baby.
Pure bliss.


Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist - Review

Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist

So it turns out that while I was watching Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist, my roommates were repeatedly calling me to join them directly afterwards to watch Max Payne in the same theater. I didn't get the message. Yet, somehow, between the two movies, one focused on teen romance and one focused on a non-stop killing spree, I'm fairly certain that Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist remains the more rewarding of the two.

This latest teen joy-ride stars Michael Cera and Kat Dennings respectively as Nick and Nora, two high-school students who, despite being in the same circle of friends, have somehow never met. Nick has just been dumped by his trashy, "How did he ever go out with that girl in the first place" girlfriend. Naturally, after Nora unwittingly gives Nick a kiss of passion to stick it to his ex, the two are pushed together by Nick's friends, a group of homosexual teens riding in a van. Click click, match match.

By this point I wasn't entirely confident in the film. I didn't feel as though I was watching a group of teens as much as I was watching what a collection of concerned parents would imagine their teens to be like on a night out, or, more importantly, how MTV would like teens to be like on a night out. Somehow, and I could be wrong in this, I found the van full of gay boys to be a charming, but unrealistic portrayal of the younger homosexual community, the teens non-stop night drive without a single parental influence (call, run-in, or mention) to be an apparent ideal, but also a completely unrealistic occurrence, and the kids apparent ability to get ahold of alcohol so easily somewhat surprising. Maybe it's just New York, but I doubted it would ever turn out like this.

However, eventually that doubt began to wain. Eventually I began to grasp the over-active stimulus as just part of the unique universe of Nick and Nora. Really, this is all due to the characters, who manage to be thoroughly likable despite what our interactions with the real-life versions may be. In reality, they're hipsters. They pride themselves on the bands they "discovered," and avoid the popular trends that hit mainstream. Throughout their night journey they track down clues to find a mysterious band named "Where's Fluffy?" a group so popular that apparently every level of the high-school hierarchy is obsessed with their music. Again, I kind of doubt this. Indie-bands remain so for their decidedly select appeal. Let's be honest here, no matter how much they should, not everyone loves Devendra Banhart (who actually have a fantastic cameo). Still, as a narrative device it keeps them moving, and when push comes to shove their shift in priorities begins to reveal enjoyable, charming, and undeniably sweet characters. I liked the time I spent with them.

They don't quite have the charming innocence of Ferris Bueller (there is a gut-wrenching scene involving a toilet and a piece of gum), but towards the end Nick and Norah actually manage to find a sense of relational profundity. It exceeded my expectations, however admittedly low they were, and replaced my doubt in the hipster crowd (which I might very well be part of) with an assurance of the bonds between people. I eventually didn't feel as though Nick and Nora were more "matched" than they actually fit, and it felt right. For the sake of the moral purity of middle-school kids and teens (if there is such a thing) I probably wouldn't recommend it. I think I'm going to want my future kids to at least call me before they go to a gay Christmas pageant to retrieve their drunk friend. For the rest of you though, who actually can remember some of the indie-bands mentioned, I say you give it a go.



I wasn't really sure if none of my mail was getting through, or if nobody was sending me anything, but after a few weeks I asked around and decided to call my friendly post office for assistance.

"Post Office"
"Oh hi! I actually live just up the street and I was calling because none of my mail has seemed to come through to me in the past couple weeks."
"And why is that?"
"...Um, well, I guess I was kind of hoping you guys would know. The people in charge at my apartment building said that the new mailman didn't have my name down as living at this apartment and was returning my mail to the post-office."
"Why would they tell you that??"
"...I, uh, well I don't know. I assume because that's what's happening."
"Where did you move from?"
"I'm from Washington D.C."
"And you live in Huntington Beach."
"Do you live in this apartment?"
"Did you put in a forwarding request?"
"Yes. Wait. No-"
"If you didn't put in a forwarding request then your mail won't be forwarded."
"No, that's not the problem. I'm not getting the mail coming to me from-"
"When did you put in the forwarding request?"
"-No, you don't-"
"When did you put in the forwarding request?"
"No, wait."
"When did you put in the forwarding request?! WHEN DID YOU PUT IN THE FORWARDING REQUEST?!"
"We're going in circles here. If you didn't put in a forwarding request your mail from DC won't get to you. If you just want mail from next door then put a note in your mailbox for the mailman telling him you live there."
"Oh, alright."
"Thanks for the-"
*hangs up*

And that was my annoying social interaction for the day, speaking with a total D-bag post-office lady.

Seize the Day

It's early for me. That means it's before noon. And I'm tired.

So far there hasn't been much to write about today. Although I must say, this morning I followed a convertible on the way to work, and it had a license plate with the letters spelling out MR HSTRY. Next to it were two bumper stickers. One said "I THINK, therefore I'm dangerous" and "When you invite people to think, you are inviting revolution."
So I essentially met a high-school history professor who whispers "Carpe Diem" into his student's ears and does cool things like tear pages out of his required text books and teach by standing on top of his desk.

Since we're on the topic of History, I'm going to go off topic again so that I can show you my collection of messed up stuff I found online from Japan. I bet you have no idea what's going over there right now. I'm sure even if you lived in Japan, you still wouldn't understand. But let me ask you this: do you really need to?
When you have the opportunity to see a woman in a bear costume dance while wearing a backpack with a group of school-children, do you really need to ask questions?
No. No you do not.

It's not nearly the most confusing thing to come out of Japan. Frankly, I assume everyone in that culture regularly dresses themselves as bears.
No, what might actually be confusing, on a number of different levels, is the apparent success of the male bra industry in their country.
I could post the ad picture below, but frankly, it makes me feel slightly uncomfortable, maybe even a little jealous.

Shamefully, I missed the Japanese cultural past-time of cramming 2 kilograms of mochi into the backpacks of tiny school-children and then forcing them to run a race.

It might be the most depressing family activity in existence.
Hilariously depressing.

Finally, if you're still wondering what I'm going to send you as my annual Christmas card, well, here you go. Squid postcards.

In case your still not satisfied, here's a Red Panda eating berries.
Simple, yet cuddly.


Life In America: Black Friday and My New Wii Pajamas

Yes. I did take part in the Black Friday festivities this year. And it was GLORIOUS.
While most people waited diligently in front of Target (at 5 a.m.) for their GPS doo-dads, I meanwhile had bigger fish to fry.

That's right. I got myself a pair of Wii pajamas.
And now you can read all about them in my latest article for the Chimes. Hooray!

Would you kindly click the linky?


Dinosaur Sightings

Some might say the best dinosaur is the lovely Stegosaurus, the dreaded T-Rex, or the shameful, shameful Ankylosaurus.
Personally, mine is the one you can find along the 10 Highway, right after you hit the windmills coming over the mountains into LA.

The first time I saw them I had already traveled 5,000 miles or so from Washington D.C. Somehow I hit them just in time to get my picture snagged by a photographer of the LA Times.

I'm not really sure how it happened either, but it's definitely one of my favorite stories to tell.

They're the Cabazon Dinosaurs, and if they look familiar it might be because you saw Pee-Wee Herman hideaway in one while on his own big adventure.

Or glimpsed at in an Oasis music video.

They've been around for a while, about 40 years, and like most kitschy tourist traps, you can occasionally count on finding them mostly abandoned.

They were, after all, constructed out of spare parts from the Interstate 10. To top it off, supposedly the paint on Rex was done by one of the owner's friends in exchange for one dollar and a case of Dr. Pepper.

Few people really seem to care that these massive beasts are stranded in the middle of the desert, but somehow they keep popping up in the most unexpected places.

I mention this because my dad just took a snapshot of one on the side of a bus while in DC.

How it got there and ended up holding a television, I'll never know.

Chainsaw Gun

Hey, remember a few weeks ago when I mentioned the charm, wonder, and thoroughly unnecessary concept of a gun with a friggin chainsaw attached to it?
Good news. Some guy in the southern backwoods has turned it into a reality.

God bless America.

There are a number of wonderful things to notice in this video.
Primarily the fact that this man is clearly videotaping himself, alone, probably in his backyard, shooting and viciously chopping pumpkins, halloween jack-o-lanterns, with his makeshift "chainsaw bayonette."

Sir, you can't see me now, but I'm sitting in front of my monitor giving you a slow clap of approval.

I can't wait for that moment within the next ten years when we eventually get to have robot soldiers armed with these chainsaw-guns and realize it was a horrible, horrible mistake.

"I can see about ten spots on here that don't have chainsaw guns mounted to it."

It's going to happen. Oh yes. It's going to happen.


The Post Where I Talk About Videogames

If there's one thing I love more than Arizona green tea, it would have to be videogames. Even as a young lad, whilst I played Turrican on my brother's Sega Genesis, I knew this was how I'd lose countless hours, nay, DAYS, of my life.

But then again, videogames have also brought me much turmoil.

Recently, I was grazing the shelves at my local thrift store when I came across an old Sega Genesis with a price tag of five bucks.

I knew I had a choice. Eat tonight, or buy a game system I knew I would probably use once and never bother using again. Realizing that the system came with a copy of Cool Spot (a video game that shamelessly starred a long deceased promotional icon from 7Up soda bottles), the choice was practically already made for me.

The second I plugged it in/blew vigorously into the game cartridge, I remembered the most frustrating part about the early days of videogaming; they're essentially impossible to beat. You're given three lives, no saves, and if you ever plan on actually beating what you started you'll probably also have to plan on leaving the system on for a few days so that you don't have to start over from the very beginning again.

Now, a lot of things have changed. Videogames have stories, characters, even a philosophical outlook on the world. Admirers of the 2007 game Bioshock will occassionally give rants on the troubles associated with objectivism and the ideology of Ayn Rand. For the most part, they're still just distractions, but sometimes something genuinely different apears.
Games have managed to find their way into the art world, as in the case with Jason Nelson, a poet and artist who has spent much of his time creating online games such as This Is How You Will Die and his most latest i made this. you play this. we are enemies.

But then again, many things haven't changed at all. Games will still be grounded in the absurdly violent, the absurdly sexual, the absurdly cute, or all of the above as a means to provide unadulterated entertainment.

This year the Wii is still on the list of "highest in demand" for the holidays, and the Playstation 3 remains the proverbial "Booster" to Nintendo's "Turbo Man."

How antiquaited all this will seem in a few years, months, or weeks, will most likely astound me. In the meantime I'll prepare myself to one day reminisce about scratched disks, flashing red rings, and the long nights I spent with Halo.