Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Hundred Years to Live

Here I sit the night before New Year's Eve and I am wondering why I simultaneously choose to be alone but wish that I were surrounded by friends, friends, and more friends. The first friends are the friends that I have always had and I should not take them for granted. The next friends are friends of friends. I wonder how my friends became friends with those friends and whether, by the associative law, I could be friends equally with those friends. The third friends are for friends that I have recently made but, more importantly, am soon to make. Sometimes I don't believe that third friends exist. You might think that I am lonely. Not exactly. I live in my head and I could easily add friends there. I can add not just friends, but random people from the street like hobos and plumbers. That's probably why I am comfortable being alone. Alone in the sense that I'm not twittering or facebooking people til kingdom come. I'm not overly obsessed with acquaintances and how I can develop their status into friend territory. It's trouble enough to just maintain the friendships that I have, that adding new people into what should be my circle of five (ten, fifteen, etc.) feels like work. I feel that if I don't even try then I won't have to suffer the humiliation of someone rejecting me as a person. And let's be honest, 99.9% of all rejection is a personal rejection. So I put up fluffy walls that can easily be crossed by me or by futur friends. It's fluffly because really scary walls scare people and I'm not like that. I don't want to scare people, of course, I just feel comfortable with my head on something soft and not having to worry about being liked.

The good news is as long as you're alive there's always hope. I forget what movie or book I recently learned that maxim from, but it's a good start to 2009.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Punk Rock Princess of Baby Shakes

I just found out today that, this whole semester, I've been in class with a rock star. Can you believe it? The same girl I've developed a thing for, wondering what she's like, wondering how such a cute girl could have all these tatoos (two). Just today, my friend facebooked me and said to check out the basis of this band. I recognized the band in the link as the band that that girl in my class has a bag of. Right before I clicked the link I already had a feeling something was up. Could there be a link? Why did I think that? Well, me and my friend were recently just talking about that girl and it's sort of become an inside joke of sorts. And when I say talk I mean me curiously talking about her a little too much (just see the last few posts on my friend's wall).

So Frack me when I click the link and see that the basist is the cute girl in Spanish class. It totally answers the tatoos. She's in a punk/pop-punk band-- and it's all girl. All cute girls. I don't know many basists but this girl falls in the intersection of cute basists and cute girls I take a class with. She sort of gives off the vibe of "why do I need to be in class? I'm a goddam rock star". She's quiet but not in the shy way, like in the way that borderlines I'm better than you status. I was so excited when she sat next to me in the past. I thought she was just the artsy type because she had those art portfolios and during a lesson on "cursos de universidad", she described where the location of the art facilities.

You should have been in my head this whole semester. I had made up all these diabolical plans of how I was going to finally have a conversation with her. The first plan was to catch her right after class and casually talk about how my brother also likes art and whether she knew any good way to get art framed. That's sort of true because it is and I like to think that it would have worked except she always leaves class early. Should I have been the weirdo that also leaves class fifteen minutes early (Umm, are you stalking me?) right when she does. Obvious.

I also thought of a plan that involved winning some Coldplay tickets to a special Yahoo secret concert. I'm of course a huge Coldplay fan, but something tells me had I won those tickets and asked that girl, she would have been less than thrilled to go since she's so punk and all. Apparently, Coldplay makes you gay. Me gay. Also, I never win cool things, especially when it involves Coldplay. I don't even know why I'm in that frickin' mailing list when I can't even see them live for shite.

Anyway, she's now 100 times more out of my league now that I know she has a secret identity. It's hard enough to talk to girls. Plus combine that issue with the fact that she's pretty gorgeous and then the fact that she's a rock princess of punk and I might as well become celibate.

To think I was about to right a poem about her. Eso es mi vida.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Reboot Heroes

This post has been a long time coming, so here goes: Heroes is horrible. Watching it now is an absolute chore because on the one hand I am a die-hard fan, I defended it after it's bad second volume, and even after several wonky episodes of this third season. But now, this show makes no sense and I care nothing for any of the characters.

Back in season 1, I like a handful of the characters. Each character felt trapped by their mundane lives, and realized that they had extraordinary abilities. Connected by some destiny that would only be realized at the end of the season, and you have yourself a great story. Forget even that it's a superhero story.

Season 2 was bad, but I use the word bad only because I have had the privilege of trudging through the third season. It's as if the first season and all it's back-stories and character development never happened. Now the characters are not acting like themselves, which would be acceptable if the show ran with this but Heroes' characters flip-flop so much that you'd think that they were puppets being played by first graders. No-- I actually remember classmates in first grade making better stories with our action figures.

I can't even list all the crap that pisses me off about Heroes now. I will pretend that season exists in a vacuum, in a world where everything past the last five minutes of the first season never occurred.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Prospekt's March

I freakin' love the Prospekt's March, sans Jay Z of course. But it's so good that adding Mr. Beyonce is almost entirely canceled-out. Coldplay probably did that so that the new EP would not be too awesome, 'cause you know, you have to leave the fans wanting more.

Let's do a track by track analysis, shall we?

  • Life in Technicolor II -- What happens when you take the best non-track ever from Viva La Vida (the track is basically a less-than-two-minutes instrumental) and you make it a "real" track? You get a part two that's even more awesome. Who knew that adding vocals to one of my favorites would make it so good? Well, actually, I did.
  • Postcards from Far Away -- This is probably the equivalent of Life in Techinicolor part 1 from Viva La Vida. It's also an instrumental. But this time it consists of only piano. It's a short, tiny morsal of warmth. Maybe if there's a second EP (please!) then Postcards could become a smooth balad.
  • Glass of Water -- l love when Coldplay rocks out by banging wildly on the piano. Clocks and Speed of Sound from their last albums were great, but Glass of Water has this great off-beat chorus of thundering piano. I'm not as musical as my history would say I am, but I think the timing changes during the chorus and makes you want to grab a piano and smash along with it. Go crazy. I can imagine Chris Martin just doing his weirdo dance while playing this song. Coldplay at its best.
  • Rainy Days -- This reminds me of Beck for some reason. It sounds like there's a turntable in the beginning so it sounds nothing like Coldplay in the begining, but you start to realize that you like it still. Then the strings come in during the chorus and Chris plays around with the lyrics in a syncopated matter. You'll find yourself waiting patiently for the chorus everytime.
  • Prosepekt's March --Here is the title track. Love the smooth feeling and the lyrics are great (Don't you wish life were as simple/ as shooting fish inside a barrell when you've got the gun?) . Though it's slow and there's a simple guitar riff, Chris really sings the song well. Another track that makes you feel good.
  • Lost+ -- Jay-Z. meh. Sounds like Jay-Z phoned in the lyrics, literally, rather than show up to the studio and jam with Coldplay. This is disapppointing considering that had the two actually come up with something original, it would have been oodles better than this weak effort. I loved all previous Lost versions, but this one is bad.
  • Lovers in Japan (Osaka Sun Mix) -- I absolutely love this track on Viva La Vida. This is pretty much the same track. There's a slight change in the middle where there's some faint extra singing added. Also, this is no longer a two-fer-- no Reign of Love. So it's a good addition to the EP not like that bastard Lost plus.
  • Now My Feet Won't Touch the Ground -- This is acoustic Coldplay. Slow and Calm. It's a good change of pace and an end to the EP.
I love Prospekt's March. When Viva La Vida intially dropped this summer, I did not get the chance to buy it. However, I believe that my not buying it was a sign from the music gods. They delivered to me this little gem. Especially, now that there's a Viva La Vida: Prospekt's March special Edition.

So, yeah, I love Coldplay more than ever.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Love to Eat Turkey

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. Today I have an excuse for over-eating, which, as it turns out, is much better for my self-esteem than pigging out during any other day. The food had some Filipino twists compared to your All-American fare. For example, instead of collard greens we had something called "laing". It's pretty much just like the former, except spicier and with some coconut milk. I'm probably getting the recipes mixed up, but I'm no cook. I prefer to consume with minimal discretion, unless there are any crustaceans since I'm allergic.

The key-lime pie was bad, though. I don't think I've ever had it before, but it was one of those pies you get at the supermarket that's made at the supermarket. It tasted like it wasn't meant to be eaten, like it belonged in one of those comedy sketches where people throw pies at each other. The interesting thing is that there was another pie from the same supermarket that was made in a similarly careless manner, but was chocolate, and it tasted way better. The pie was still light enough to fit nicely in the said comedy shows, but everyone had seconds. Of course, that includes me. What didn't I have seconds of?

I ate too much. Before dinner, I told everyone that Thanksgiving was my favorite holiday. Immediately after my last bite, I was barely able to breathe out the message that I changed my mind-- I hated this holiday. But that's the best thing about Thanksgiving: I love it before and I hate it afterward. It's sort of like when you do something that's evil and you feel dirty and guilty immediately afterward. This is the only holiday where it starts to feel like work towards the end of dinner. It became my mission to not let that huge-ass turkey leg go to waste. I was going to let all its white meat go to my own huge-ass, right next to all the pie fat.

Then we all played Rock Band-- The gimped Wii version because I'm such a Nintendo Fanboy and I'm still suffering from having this sorry excuse for next-gen hardware.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Guys and Dolls

Frack me. I just saw this documentary called Guys and Dolls and it will blow your mind. I like to think that I am somewhat open-minded (sure, you can be gay but I don't think you should kill babies), but damn if having plastic girlfriends isn't the weirdest thing ever. It really is just a high form of masturbation. That's why I suggest you save your money for something else because the internet is free and full of you-know-what that you don't need to screw synthetic material shaped into human form.

After watching this disturbing/interesting piece, I now have another thing to put on my list of what-I-hope-I-never-become. It's difficult to get dates, but do I really need to bone a doll?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Why, Coldplay. Why?

Should I even bother putting the "Lost+" track into my iPod?  Yes, I'm a huge Coldplay fan, even though I've never seen them live (still furious about that), but that doesn't mean that I don't think that Coldplay has a few stinkers.  Just listen to any version of the track "Lost" except for the plus version and you'll see why the version with Jay-Z might not make it into my mp3 player.  I really want to put all the tracks of their new EP into my playlist, but something about hearing the beautiful Lost raped by an overrated rapper seems wrong.  Maybe it's the rape part.

Just listen to the track.  It's basically the original track plus JHov's voice rapping over it.  I'd rather have Kanye remix Coldplay's track while he stutters than listen to this abomination again.  I'm probably still bitter about not getting a chance to see Coldplay, but dammit if this song isn't crap.  Other than that, the Prospekt's March EP is pretty great.  It complements Viva La Vida well.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Pushing Daisies


I knew it was coming. I saw the signs on the wall when I did not see a single second of promotion from ABC. But here it is: Pushing Daisies is canceled. Let me keep it short and sweet. Such has been the fate of other great-but-canceled television (specifically Arrested Development). What will I miss the most about Pushing Daisies? Pure escapism-- from the vibrant colors to the sharp dialogue. It looked good and it sounded good. You won't see color like that in the real world. You won't hear conversations like that in the real world.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Quantum

What are the critics smoking? Quantum of Solace was fantastic. While I'm not ready to concede the title of the best James Bond movie, which for me still goes to Casino Royale, Quantum gives it a run for its money.

Quantum is like Casino, but with more explosions and less talking. I can definitely see that the Bond franchise is taking a bit off of the Bourne series, which in reality has taken a bite from Ian Flemming's Bond. Casino Royale gets an edge in the pacing, though, since there is much more plot and character development. In Quantum's defense, this is probably, to my knowledge, the only Bond movie that is a direct sequel (it takes place right after Casino left off). So if you take this movie as a sequel to Casino, rather than a stand alone movie, you may enjoy it more. Either way, it's still a great movie.

Plus, Olga Kurylenko is so beautiful. She definitely pulls of the Latin looks well. Bond always gets the hotties, doesn't he? Oh, and there are gadgets, you're just not paying attention, but Bond and MI-6 is not underpowered.

As an aside, this is the type of movie that makes me wish I spoke other languages--just look at the locales and people! Yes, this semester I'm working on some sort of Spanish, and I may have to just learn it on my own when I start my second masters, but I wish I could just immerse myself and learn it already. I'm actually really jealous of anyone who is multi-lingual. I really don't count the Tagalog that I understand since, I can't communicate properly and most Filipinos speak some sort of English (just watch the frickin' The Filipino Channel and you might understand half the words they say). We're living in a global world that's more interconnected than ever, speaking more than one language can bring us closer.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Kanye Le Douche

Kanye West is hilarious, if not a huge douche. He is a megalomaniac who thinks that the words that comes out of his mouth have some sort of profound meaning. Let him speak for himself. I do just fine making sense on my own.

Maybe he's just run out of oldie's to sample.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What the FOCA

I am surprised to find myself a little torn. On the one hand, I feel it is wrong that the government gets to define who gets to marry whom. Then there's my long-held belief that abortion rights should be determined locally, that is, the states should be allowed, via voting and referendums, to institute laws allowing or prohibiting abortions. Basically, if you are the type to believe that a person should be able to get an express abortion, then you should be able to get one if you live in a state where the majority of people agree with you. However, if you still believe, for whatever reason, that you cannot allow abortions to occur, then you should be allowed to live similarly.

Shockingly, I find that this view that I hold resembles more closely the right-to-choose views of the country rather than what I initially believed was my pro-life slant. But, I have to declare that I am a pro-lifer because at the end of the day I would stray on the side of life and love. I am not making a judgment here on other people's morality-- I have not brought any religious elements into the equation. Life, for me at least, begins at conception. So in essence, when one aborts, they are destroying a life. (Interestingly enough, I am unable to type "kill" in place of "destroy.) However, I believe there are certain situations that paint this moral issue a dark gray. In instances of rape, incest, or when the life of the child or mother is in danger, then I believe abortion is an option. I have no problem with this and I actually understand this position. However, I just don't think anyone else should easily be able to have an abortion.

One may argue that it is the woman's choice because it's her body. Well, you can believe that, but I believe that that is a life inside a woman and not an object. This position of mine is very slippery, but that's why I draw a line at defining life. I use the simplest definition and that's at conception. No trimesters, no partials, just life.

What I will oppose is any mandate forcing all physicians to perform abortions. If a doctor does not want to perform an abortion because of personal, moral, or religious beliefs, then he or she should not be forced by the law. They can still fulfill their role as health caretakers by offering the individual other options, including doctors who can perform the abortion. It's one thing to perform what I believe to be morally questionable, but it's a whole 'nother issue when the government forces someone who does not believe in it to do it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Proposition Hate

The United States takes two steps forward and one step back. While we have beautifully inspired the world by electing a minority to the highest elected position of power, President-elect Barack Obama, the state of California has voted to pass an amendment to their state constitution that re-defines marriage, essentially making all previous same-sex marriages illegal.

This is proposition 8, or as many now know it as proposition h8 (hate).

This is no doubt due to the influence of right-wing Evangelical Christians and their stubbornness to realize that their god (and probably my god), if he were so ever-loving, would at the very least, love all his children, including gays and especially ignorant religious biggots.

Look, when it comes to the issue of abortion, even if were absolutely unassociated with any religious organization, I would always believe that life begins at conception-- when the sperm and egg join. (I believe that the zygote is the beginning of human life. I have no problem with preventative contraception that stop the sperm and egg from joining. Because that does not destroy the life. But abortions are a different beast, and I am not entirely black or white on that topic, which is a post for another day.)

When it comes to homosexuality, I could never understand how some people could be denied their right to love. I understand that a church can make its own rules, but it is absolutely hypocritical that god proposes "love thy neighbor" but deny "love" for some. That's what irks me so much about Christianity. I grew up learning about how Jesus loves you, but as I grew older it seemed so contradictory that some people are loved less. I'm pretty sure that's not what Jesus had in mind, denying all people, embryos and homosexuals, a right to life and love.

That's what it comes down to folks. You could be the most religious person in the world, or you could be an agnostic, but what you all have in common is the right to life and the right to love. To have someone else deny you that right defeats the whole purpose of everything. If a single person in the United States of American is denied this right, then we still have a ways to go.

Love thy neighbor. Period.

Friday, October 03, 2008

This is So Wrong

You have to, have to, have to, have to, eighteen years-old before you can even remotely look like this. I'm going to need therapy now because you cannot look like this and NOT be legal.  It's the law somewhere.  I need therapy.  Thanks, Momsen.
Actually, I probably already need therapy for a host of other complexes but this one is just the most easiest to write about.  Burn this photograph from my mind, por favor!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

More Action Than Heroes

"I need to tell you something, Blaire. I have a British accent."

Fucking Hilarious. The season premiere of the second season of Gossip Girl had it all. More importantly, out of everything else about this show, it's extremely over-the-top. Half-way through this episode I thought I was watching a sluttied-up version of Pushing Daisies. If Daisies met some science fiction like Star wars.

Why? Well, all this bullshit that's going on between Blaire and Chuck. First of all, make up your fucking minds, you two. Chuck, you left Blaire and now you're surprised she's found someone else. Then you are near tears when it appeared that Blaire-bitch gave her pin to that fake Brit (My money is on him being actually from Staten Island and is actually a rapist). As for Blaire, what is the deal with you still liking Chuck? Do you really need him to say those three little words. Can I say those words? Will that make it okay? Seriously? You became a couple by boning in a limo.

Gossip Girl felt really science-fictiony in the scene where Chuck chases Blaire as she is about to talk to that Brit dude. Then Chuck says that she is manipulative just like he is, that they are meant to be together because they are the same. Then Blaire backs off and is all like, "I can't because I don't want to be like you". Que her running away.

That was actually awesome. It's like Chuck (the dark side) is showing Blaire (secretly the dark side) her true colors and she won't accept it. Awesome.

What else happened? Well you have statutory rape between Nate and this married woman. I guess Nate has all the fun, huh? By the way, how forced did the opening scene seem when Chuck had to be suave with the triplets ("I'm going to sleep with you. You. And . . . you." One of the weaker lines of the episode).

Also, Dan is a player now. Good for him. Except I would've liked it if he had learned to be a player back when he was too busy pining for Serena at the beginning of the series. Now he just comes off as cocky ("Hey, I had the girl of my dreams. Now I just want to have fun because I can").

A resounding finally (sa wakas!) that there's an Asian chick on Gossip Girl that's not nerdy or a sheep following the herd. It was just a walk-on roll, but she played a cute, strong girl very well. Kudos to the show and here's hoping for more Yellow fever. I think I know that girl, though.

Eric's role in the episode seemed force too. Especially that frickin' brunch in the beginning. Who was hosting? Why was Chuck, Blaire, that Brit, Eric, and Serena's grandma having brunch together? Actually, Why was Chuck invited?

I'm getting nitpicky. It's still a great episode. One of the better ones. It's only going to get better. I'm especially excited for Jenny and Eric becoming friends again. Jenny's back on the good side (Did you see how she chose to stay with that designer woman, even though she had the chance to stab her back?). But, I'm hoping against all hopes for Jenny and Eric to become a couple (Gay reversal).

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Rachel Lampa equals Freakin' Awesome

I knew something good was going to come out of the 2008 Republican National Convention. That good thing is a girl and her name is Rachel Lampa. Did you see her performance on Tuesday night? She is gorgeous and can "sang" (You go, girl!).

My views have vacillated like everything else in my life, but what hasn't changed is my taste for hot gals. I was literally watching the RNC. So I wasn't watching anything political, but Lampa caught my attention. She was all cool with her nose ring and tan self. Plus she has a great voice (It was live, people!). My opinion of Rachel didn't even change when CNN flashed on the screen that she's a popular Christian artist. She sings about God, so what. That means she's probably a nice girl you can take home to meet your mom.

Immediately after her two songs, I raced to the computer to google her. I was wondering while I typed how she could be so pretty and be my age (You see, long story, but I've been feeling old mostly because I've been seeing all these "youngin's" who are so cute, ahem, Chelsie H.) Can you believe there are people my age? It turns out she's frickin' half Pinay (Okay, I have to represent this once!). And she has some Irish in her. I haven't listed all the things that's good about her, but she might make a run for dream girl if you ask me. Freakin' Awesome if you ask me.

Now, I won't google any more of her. I'll probably just download some songs, but damn do I really want to have a video of her performance in the RNC. I almost want to vote Republican.

Either that or I just really want some Lampa. Or lumpya.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Bristol Banged (up)

It looks like someone beat me to the punch. Shucks. McCain's veep, Sarah Palin, who one sxephil cleverly calls a VPILF (you figure it out), has a daughter who is 17 and pregnant. Five months preggers to be exact. I don't blame, Bristol. She's quite the looker and it was only a matter of time. Look at the mom. Palin has 5 children of her own and I wouldn't be surprised if she knocked out a few more.

OMG, how awesome would it be if Palin became VP and got pregnant and gave birth while in office? Well, it would suck for everyone else since that would mean 4 more years of McBush.

Why is it those "values" people always have the most "un-values" of problems. A child is a gift, okay, and maybe this isn't such a problem since Bristol plans to keep the child. But, doesn't this shine a not so bright light on McCain's ticket. Here you have Palin who was supposed to bring the conservative vote to McCain that pundits say he needs, and instead, Palin brings her hot pregnant daughter. What values are we talking about again?

In a much kinder note, I wish the best for Bristol (even though I was hoping I would, you know). Let's all pray together that the media does not attack her and Palin for this. Aww, who am I kidding. This is politics. Of course she will be destroyed. Not literally though. The family is too good-looking for that.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Fringe

Let's just get one thing straight: Abrams knows how to get the right lead female on his shows. If Fringe isn't the next Lost, then at least it has Olivia Dunham, played by the Brit Anna Torv. (She's British-- her name isn't Brit.) There's this one scene in the pilot that Torv has to get a little nakey-nakey and she looks sexy-sexy. Whaddaya know, she's also a blonde. On a side note, I think we can officially stop calling my infatuations with blondes just a fad, and instead realize that I find blondes attractive.

Yeah, so Anna Torv is cute. She's not dream-about-her-every-night material yet. For one thing, she's a human being so eff me for objectifying blah blah blah. Just Watch Fringe for her if you don't like Sci-Fi.


Meat And Potatoes of Fringe

Now on to my impression of the the "leaked" pilot of the new science fiction show Fringe. It's produced by J.J. "Lost" Abrams. Fringe's pilot is not of the same caliber as Lost's phenomenol first episode. While Lost keeps you on the edge and wanting more straight through its two hour premiere, Fringe starts off with a similar bang (plane fetish?), but due to the incredulity of some of the "science" in the episode, Fringe starts to taper off in the middle acts.

Also, maybe there's not enough characters yet, like in Lost, but the few faces of Fringe lack chemistry. I think Joshua Jackson's character was supposed to be witty, but he came across as annoying. When everyone else was having their own serious conversation, in this pilot, Jackson would interrupt with a "witty" remark that everyone would ignore. I think the writers were trying to make it funny. I'm hoping that he isn't just relegated to comic relief.

But just think of how beautiful Anna Torv is and you'll be fine.

There's definitely potential for the future of Fringe if it doesn't get cancelled. They strictly deal with an unknown source doing fringe science experiments on the world itself which call the phenomenon "the pattern". Sounds freaky, so me likey. It's Dunham's job to find out who is doing this and how they're all connected. There's mythology that can be explored in this series. I hope there's alot more twists and turns and mystery, though. If they can introduce better dialogue that would be a plus.



Not Like Any Pie I Know

This time last year I was super-hyped for Pushing Daisies after seeing its pilot, though I'm not raving about Fringe after seeing its pilot, I'd say it's at least better than anything that's new on TV this Fall. But that's just saying how crappy all the other new shows are. I hate my grammar.

Where Have All The Asian Girls Gone? (Borderline Racist)

Let me preface this post with a little disclaimer. Yes, I will admit that my confidence and self-esteem fluctuate a lot, but I have to ask the world,

"What is up with all these Asian girls NOT dating Asian dudes?"

More specifically, it's always a the white guy who ends up with the Asian girl. Maybe this perceived problem is similar to how some black men wonder why all the black women don't date them.

Or maybe, I just answered my own question in the first line of this post? (Typical over-achieving Asian male, answering his own questions in a single karate chop.)

I know the typical answer would be that Asian guys tend to not be assertive enough. That they are too shy and do not make any moves, thus leaving the girl to any other guy. Yeah, I can see this. It's true in many cases and for any ethnicity. But come on, you're telling me that there are no Asian guys who are slightly assertive enough to get with their female counterparts? Really?

You know what, maybe we should just go for white girls. White girls have yellow fever too, don't they? Don't they?

Meh.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Obama Nomination

How do I know I'm American? Whenever I hear the "I Have a Dream" speech, whenever it's played and I hear the sincerity and hope in Dr. King's voice, I always almost cry.

I think it's hard for some people to understand this. Some people think that you have to be black in America to feel the power of the words and believe in it's meaning. Well, I'm not black. I'm just American. Actually, I think anyone in the world can connect with the message that we are all brothers and sisters regardless of our many differences. Yes, we do have differences and it's a mistake to pretend like they do not exist. Color exists but that does not make us human. Gender and sexuality exist but that does not make us human.

It's probably easier for me since wherever I go, I see all types of people who are not afraid to walk on the same sidewalk with each other. We are all different, but there is something about living in America that brings out our shared experiences and our similarities.

This country is far, far, far from perfect, but if we can elect a black man to be our most highest servant, then humanity is one step closer to getting closer. Think of it as globalization but more brotherly and more celebratory of our unique qualities, minus all the forced conformity to a single ideal.

I hope I make sense.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Life, Prince, Nina Meyers

You Have Video Games In My TV Soup

I think there's a word for when two things you like to do that are usually separate meet with interesting results. The summer is basically done and it's time for classes to begin once again (When will this school thing end? When I say it does.), so I have spent my time just going online and watching the tv show Life on Hulu. I'm up to the seventh episode and there's a part where the detectives have to play video games for something. Lo' and behold, they end up playing Prince of Persia, and guess what I'm using to currently feed my addiction? Prince of Persia!

Pretty neat, huh? My life is so awesome.

The interesting thing is how they totally butcher or alter the game. Prince of Persia does not have levels per se, yet in the plot of the episode, the police have to get to level ten to unlock something. Also, just throw in the usual Hollywood tactic where whenever there's video games, some plays it like they're having a manual seizure. Nobody moves there body like that. This isn't Wii Sports.



Hotties


Life is a decent show, so I might have to tune in this season. But people should definitely watch out for Fringe. It's pretty high on the buzz meter, and though I have downloaded the pilot, I have yet to find the right time to settle down and enjoy the show properly. I just may have to watch on premiere night 9-09-08.

The episode of Life I was talking about had particularly good looking women. So get ready to add more girls to the Asukal files. No, none of them blonde, but there is a red-head. There's this one chick, Sarah Shahi, who I suspect is of Persian descent. She's petite so that's definitely a plus, but she gives of a strong but sexy vibe. Yes, very sexist of me, but I'm just saying. Shahi is cute. She reminds me of Vanessa Marcil of Las Vegas fame, also from NBC. It's good that brunettes are being represented now in this Asukal post. It's a good change from the usual oh-my-god-I-think-I-have-a-blonde-proclivity posts.

Though I am still a huge, huge, Chelsie Hightower obsessed fan.

Oh, Chelsie. :)

I almost forgot! Sarah Clarke, yes Nina from 24, was in this episode. She's still hot. And interestingly enough, two things I like have intersected again: Sarah Clarke is sporting a blonde do. I don't know if she's really a blonde (I know she's hot), but does this count as another one in the I'm-a-blonde-guy-now-for-real column?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Still Waiting

It's weird that the summer is coming to an end. It's even weirder that I'm still in school. This coming Fall will hopefully be my final semester in the masters in education program. But, I am actually hoping to start a second masters in biochemistry come next Spring. I figure, I might as well stack up in degrees, but I'm getting ahead of myself. The school's decision should arrive late September or October. So we'll see.

Right now though, my youngest brother just left for college the other day. I feel so old now! I'm a thousand percent positive that he'll fit in well and have the best years of his life in Binghamton. As for me, I am, of course, just a commuting grad student.

My Lolo is in the hospital, though. He's always had trouble breathing, but it's gotten bad since he recently returned from the Philippines. So when he finally got checked by the doctors after months of trying to tolerate his condition, the doctor decided that he should be left in the hospital for a while for some observations. I hope he does well and gets better because I'm sure it's hurting my Lola so bad right now. I'm not too down though. It's not like this just happened out of thin air, and I'm hopeful anyway.

So that's my life right now. A sort of purgatory in that I am technically out of college, but I'm still in school. Anyway, good luck to my bro and get better, Lolo.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Oh, Chelsie

Check out my new celebrity (?) crush: Chelsie Hightower. The judges on So You Think You Can Dance call her a firecracker on stage, and who would disagree? Chelsie really destroys the competition with her Latin ballroom skills. I can't stop watching her dances on youtube. Her partner Mark definitely deserves props, even though I'm jealous that he got to dance with her. So it's no surprise I was a little bummed she didn't make it one more week for the finale.

From a purely dancing point of view, I really enjoy her dancing. All the Latin stuff is great. Part of it might have something to do with her beautiful legs (I'm not even a leg guy!). The best thing outside of the way she shakes those hips of hers (oh em gee), is her playfulness off of the dancefloor. The clips of her rehearsals really make her seem like just a chill person. I'm actually surprised that I find her so attractive since she has this tomboyish nature to her. In fact, that's what probably adds to her fireyness.

There are fans of the show who may believe that Courtney deservedly advanced to the finals over Chelsie, but Chelsie had the edge in my book. Some may say Courtney got in because she's sexier, but at least to me, Chelsie is sexy. She just exudes sexiness on the dancefloor, and more importantly, she can switch it up when she gets off the stage. That's definitely very appealing because of the great contrast. It feels like you could just hang out with her, but then she could still do the whole girly thing (but not too girly).

Marry me, Chelsie!






Wow, another blonde? I might have to do away with the whole "I'm not attracted to blondes" thing. In the mean time, I'm going to learn the Argentine tango.

Dollars and No Sense

If you are interested in buying this "app" for your iPhone, but are not able to, I suggest a similar alternative which is to have the words "I am a douche" tatooed on your forehead. Best of all, it's cheaper. If you don't like cheap, then pay a homeless guy $999.99 to punch you in the face. The homeless dude can use that money to buy brass knuckles that can leave a similar imprint on your smugly mug as said phrase.

Thank you.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Family Vacation

I just returned from my Myrtle Beach vacation--well, actually, my family and I came back two days ago, but who's keeping track?

I should have blogged during my time off to save my memories in the internet bottle, but I did not have adequate internet access. That, and I was lazy.

We stayed in the awesome beach house of my aunt and my first thought is how I wish I would be rich one day. Besides the warm sun that reminded me how great it was to be a teacher during the summer (too bad I'm not working anymore), the best thing about the vacation was spending time with extended family. My brothers and I were once pretty close to our cousins from West Virginia when we were younger, but after they went to boarding school and we all went through our awkward phases, we did not visit each other as much. It's not perfect now and I will always say that nothing ever is, but at least now, I have a better appreciation for family and friends. In fact, I would go so far as to say that we might be getting closer.

The way I see it, family and friends have things in common. Friends are people you can confide in and be yourself with no reservations. Finding these people is difficult and even harder to maintain relations with them. But for some reason, family is always there. The best thing though is family who can be friends. I'm hoping that this is the case not just for those cousins I was once close to, but for my cousins half way across the world, cousins just barely teens and cousins who have their own families now.

The more the merrier.

I know I haven't told any family about my little asukal blog here, but I would like to just say to them: Until the next time we share the sun together, I have your backs and you have mine and it's good to know that.

Ciao.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Lullaby

I would like to present you with a quote from a terrifically queer novel I just finished reading called Lullaby by Chuck Pahlahniuk.

The best way to waste your life is by taking notes. The easiest way to avoid living is to just watch. Look for the details. Report. Don't participate. Let Big Brother do the singing and dancing for you. Be reporter. Be good witness. A grateful member of the audience.
The novel itself is just the right kind of twisted that you need to read it.

Valerie

Right now, when I hear that name, I immediately think of the infectious and uber-fun song of the same name by Mark Ronson and Amy Winehouse. It's just a really good song and I promise you it will not disappoint.

Just this past week, my family started subscribing to The Filipino Channel (TFC) because my aunt and mamay felt it was the right time. I guess they are often bored. Well, they are also fans of Wowowee, a hugely popular variety show in the Philippines. Anyway, true to the name of my blog, I would like to briefly talk about one of the lips that are like sugar on that show.

But, Blueberry, you're Filipino, so of course you'll think those girls on TFC are hot. Not true. I am an equal opportunity guy and find all sorts of girls cute. In fact, I find inanimate objects cute (sometimes the curves on the piano's legs are just too irresistable). With the exception of Heart E. (please don't hate me for being cliche), I have yet to google any of the girls on the channel to find out more about them. That was until I started watching Wowowee and saw Valerie Concepcion.

I thought she was cute so just today I did some Wikipediaing and that's when the surprises slapped me. First of all, she's only twenty years-old?! What the frack, man? I've only been watching for a week, but I would have guessed she was a couple of years older, you know, just slightly younger than me. She's even younger than one of my brothers. So after thinking about it a little longer, I come to accept that she's younger than me. In fact, that's not so bad-- that's actually a good thing. I am youthful for my age, so I imagine that I would have more in common with a youngin'.

The age problem becomes a non-issue, but then the second factoid that gets me (and this one is humongous) is that she has a child. Wait, she's twenty and has a child? That's not all. She had her daughter when she was sixteen (frack!) by a Sotto guy! Well, I immediately stop reading because that whole Sotto thing disgusts me and the fact that those cats are old and impregnate a teen.

Well, Blueberry, maybe the Sotto guy the website talks about is actually a young guy unlike Vic. Pish-posh. I refuse to read any more and have those facts destroy my image of Valerie. I'll be fine. I will pretend that Valerie's having a child has made her more selective with her love interests, thus making such an awesome guy like me an excellent suitor. I'm better than a Sotto guy, right?

Whatever, I just hope I don't become more douchey by reading more biographical data on Valerie. I'll just enjoy her on Wowowee whenever my family watches The Filipino Channel.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Arghh, Nintendo at E3

I just finished watching Nintendo's E3 2008 press conference and I have rediscovered the meaning of the word "crap". That whole mess of a wreck was horrible. The only thing I found interesting was the Grand Theft Auto Chinatown game and that did not even have any screenshots or video.

Sure, Animal Crossing may be interesting in the same way that Animal Crossing is interesting to only a select few people. I am not one of those people. It looks like more of the same and the only reason I have played the DS version was because I wanted to see what the whole fuss was about.

The whole presentation just talked about how many Wii's and DS's Nintendo has sold. Big deal. The games for Wii are getting on my nerves now since there is no real substance. Do I have to wait once or twice a year for a great game like Super Mario Galaxy and Smash Bros.?

Nintendo, I don't care about your Wii Music. It's not even a game. Even Wii Sports was fun. Actually, I'll give you that Wii Sports is a decent game, but only because it was the first game to showcase the Wii's controller. Wii Music has no objective but to look stupid while pretending to play a wind or string instrument using the Wiimote. It doesn't even sound like the real instruments.

It's a good game if your're two years-old or are not a gaming enthusiast. There's nothing wrong with that except, your real fans will have to start to look to other consoles. I'm going to see what Sony and Microsoft has to offer, while you, Nintendo, sell a butt-load of Wii's that most people will never buy another game for (they can just play the Wii Sports which they think is the whole damn reason for owning a Wii).

I am angry and frustrated, because now, I have to consider spending 400 bones for a different system and I have a Wii that will collect dust perpetually.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Price Droppin' Fool

The xbox 360 $50 price drop is imminent and makes purchasing an xbox almost affordable. I am seriously contemplating buying one. However, if I think about it long and hard enough (hehe) I realize that I should probably wait a few months or a year to see if Sony drops the price of their Playstation 3.

Here are my reasons why I have to try my best to NOT buy a price-dropped xbox 360:

1) First of all, look at it's library of games. Yes, there are some really good games like Call of Duty 4, Bioshock, and Mass Effect, but not a whole lot of variety. The 360 is mostly good for shooters, which though I am a fan off, can get old fast if there's not fluffy stuff to balance out all the shooting and explosions.

2) In keeping with the games theme, the many of the good games are also multi-platform. In other words, there are not many exlusive games to the xbox 360 that warrant a purchase. Halo 3? Good game, but it's another shooter and there's a whole boatload of those on othe sytems. Where are my action adventure games and RPGs?

3) Playstation 3 has better exclusives and a better variety. Just look at the Ratchet series and think about Square Enix's support. I know the Final Fantasy series is overrated as are many Japanese RPGs, but it is a change of pace. There is at least good Japanese support for the playstation.

4) This price drop also signals that Microsoft may be coming out with another configuration for the xbox and they're just trying to clear up some room for this new one.

5) More importantly, the ps3 may also have a price drop in response to the xbox's. I really hope that the 360's sell really well following price drop. This would signal to Sony, that maybe, just maybe, 400 to 500 bones for a video game machine won't cut it for many of us. Hell, I still don't have a good enough TV to enjoy high-definition or any definition for that matter. If the xbox sells well, the ps3 will have to come down in price soon. I can only hope. Then I can judge for myself what moves I should make.

Let's pray for 250 to 300 dollar price point for both systems. Let's even drop the $60 price tag for games.

Peaces.

Iran is Not Da Bomb

Are you serious? Under no circumstance (at least currently or even foreseeable) should the United States even consider attacking Iran. We are still in two wars, if people forget: the hugely unpopular Iraq occupation and the less publicized Afghanistan operations.

Let Iran showboat and flaunt its photoshopping capabilities. I don't care how many missiles and nuclear plants it has, we cannot do a damn thing about it. We shouldn't even try because a three front operation is not going to happen. That's like the most unpopular kid alienating two random kids and deciding to give a third kid a wedgie (atomic wedgie? sorry). It's not good publicity much less the cost and casualties.

Mainly, the U.S. needs to let the rest of the world (Europe, ahem) deal with any supposed problems in the Middle East. Let's clean up our mess in Iraq, return to looking for Osama and Al-Qaeda, who are now most definitely in the mountain tribal regions of our "friend" Pakistan. But we should be careful about that, too. Pakistan does have nuclear capabilities.

As a matter of fact, let's just get the hell out of the Middle East all together and just strengthen our homeland security. Why not develop oil alternatives so that we don't have to step foot in the Middle East until they are an inviting enough place. Just read the Kite Runner and dream of the good parts of that book (what parts?). I'm all for travel and having a global community that celebrates the uniqueness of culture (I wish I had money to travel), but there are just some places right now where all parties are misunderstood.

Let's gallavant in Europe, instead. I hear it's great there in the summer.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Do It For Russia

I am a patriotic man. I am so patriotic that I am taking up the responsibilities of all patria. One country I plan on helping is the motherland, Russia. The twelfth of September, 2008 has been declared Family Contact Day where married couples are encouraged to "engage in marital intimacy". Sounds good to me. The goal is to create boat loads of Russian babies by June 12, 2009, to combat the falling population rates of Russia.

I say, Hooray for babies, but a double Hooray for engaging in marital intimacy. I would go so far as to say that one may leave out the marital part, but I'm sure Russian officials would not be down with that.

As for me, well, I am extending a proposal (I think there's a joke to be made here) to one Ms. Hotforwords, "Let's make some magic and some Hotforwords Pinoy-Ruski-American babies."

Ciao.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Casino Royale: Take Two

What's with me and watching movies for a second time through NetFlix and loving these movies even more? First, I saw Batman Begins for a second time and I was enthralled for the whole two hours and came out super excited for its sequel. This time, I rediscovered the goodness of Casino Royale.

I saw Casino Royale, probably back in 2006, on my computer so I didn't get the whole theater experience. The image quality was great, but it was on my computer and that may have affected my first impression. Since I was able to rent the DVD just recently, I was able to follow the weaving plot and more importantly, the witty, typical Bond dialogue that was heavily accented when I first saw it.

This movie is definitely along the same lines of Batman Begin's reboot of the franchise: it has refreshed double 0h seven. Don't get me wrong, I am a fan of Brosnan's Bond, but it was getting stale. The movies started getting too flashy. The gadgets were just too unbelievable (car controlled with a phone?) and the villains were over the top (diamond faced dude?). They weren't bad. They were good, but Casino Royale showed me that Bond could be better.

While not as gritty as Batman (can anything be, really?) Royale tweaked Bond to rely less on fancy devices and more on solid action sequences. It had parkour for crying out loud! You can feel Daniel Craig exert energy as Bond trying to achieve his mission. There was no ease of accomplishing things with the flick of a rist watch, just the use Bond's wits and doggedness. He friggin' ran after that parkour dude, and he kept up with that airplane bomber by just calling his phone.

Casino Royale has the good kind of glitz and glamour. The locales are amazing (Venice and Prague), and his suits are really sophisticated. Plus, Craig is in super good shape. It makes sense how he can do all these things.

This was and is Bond 2.0. I can't wait for the sequel Quantum of Solace. The sequel promises more of the same (good thing) and be a continuation of the plot established in Casino Royale. Plot continuation, anyone? Yes. Sign me up.

Monday, June 30, 2008

That Reminds Me Of The Time When...

What is the deal with two-minute webisode content? That's episodic web content. The dude who made "Family Guy" and Google have a deal to deliver original content (a new cartoon) to websites that Google predicts are sites that Family Guy fans visit. Of course, the two-minute episodes will have product placement and your typical advertising and banners.

Is it just me, or does this smell of money money money? (I don't know what money smells like, so I couldn't find an adequate euphemism.) Maybe that's the purpose of Seth McFarlane's and Google's objective. How do you sell a product marketed to the Family Guy demographic (people who don't understand comedy and have ADD)? Well, why not create "content" (advertisements) by a popular cartoonist (unfunny bastard) that the intended demo will click. Plus, since the webisodes are two minutes long, it's practically a commercial. In fact, it's a commercial bookended and plastered with more advertising.

Genius marketing or are FG fans just stupid? Both.

Have fun watching glorified commercials, fans. I'll just wait for youtube to have the episodes so I can watch one and decide that I still don't like anything McFarlane makes.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Hair Countdown.

I got my hair cut today. I can't wait until it grows back. But, for now, I will enjoy that it's not too hot anymore and I don't have to wear my hair in a vertical pony-tail while at the gym. No faux-hawk for me, though.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

You Think You Know But You Have No Idea

Okay, I am going to try to explain how to explain-- no, I am going to express how it feels to feel old.

There are varying degrees of old, and for the most part one can be old, or feel old, or both be and feel old. For me, I think I've always been immature or child-like in my behavior and lifestyle. In a way, I like this because it makes me feel youthful. More importantly, I think that kids enjoy life more on a basic level. They play. They are fascinated by common things.

Well, recently I feel like I just woke up suddenly one day and realized I am at the stage of my life that young'uns look forward to. It's the point between adolescence and adulthood. Yeah, I know that adolescence varies between individuals and maybe I'm not exactly at the point anymore, but instead past it. But it's just weird that when I look all around me, people are still growing and have their whole future ahead of them, while I am in my future. Maybe it' s not exactly the future I was planning, but it is a future.

A year from now, I will see if my new plans have come to fruition. Hopefully, with a little more do and a little less reliance on lady luck, I will be in a position to do what I want to do.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Letter To Coldplay

Dear Coldplay,

I am so angry that I did not get free tickets to the MSG concert. This is a problem and will be for quite a while. You see, Madison Square Garden is the most accessible venue that you played in for your Viva La Vida tour. Now, I have no chance to see you live. I have never seen you guys live! Since I am also budgeting my money for future education expenses (hopefully, more grad school), I cannot afford to buy tickets to your shows. More importantly, I am the only one I know who digs Coldplay. My friends are a little "meh" about you guys, and the ones who are fans live in another state so going to a concert with them is out of the question.

If you guys could play another gig or two in New York, that would be balls to the walls great.

Yours Truly,
Blueberry

P.S. I love the new album. At first I couldn't get into it, but since I am such a huge fan, I eventually found a way to dig it. But I cannot emphasize how much I want to see you guys live before I die. Ciao.

Taste my Adobo, Bitches

Surprise. I am not upset about what the President said about Filipino-Americans. First of all, of all the things that I could be upset about Bush's presidency, this remark is a non-issue. I can't even figure out how to make it an ignorant remark. The chef of the White House is Filipino and he was just saying that when he eats his food he is reminded of the talents of such Filipino-Americans. In no way can that be interpreted as an implication that Bush thinks Filipinos are just cooks. He may think that, which I don't believe he does, but his comments did not reflect that.

So, relax bloggers. Nothing to see here. In the mean time, while we all wait for the end of this administration, as a fellow Filipino-American, I offer you some lumpia.

Friday, June 20, 2008

I used to rule the world

Go to Wordle.net to create your own awesome. Can you guess what's on my mind?

Coldplay First Listen - Part Two

I have actually listened through the whole Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends album and have come away with a positive feeling. Once again, remember that I am a huge Coldplay fan. If you are not a fan, listening to a random song on this album may not persuade you. On the other hand, this album has a different vibe than their past efforts, specifically X&Y.

Coldplay has thrown out the formula with this album so even huge fans like myself may have had trouble listening though it for the first time. There are definitely the standout and possible radio-friendly hits like Viva La Vida and Violet Hill. But, radio-friendly is relative in this case since most of today's pop hits are hip-hop infused or sugar pop. There's nothing wrong with those types of music, but Coldplay's music won't get much air time with those stations in the first place.

The album has an overall string and acoustic vibe. Some may feel the glossiness of the album through first listen, but it's just Coldplay's style. I have to say, though, the acoustic versions are equal to if not better than their full counterparts (Lost? and Strawberry Swing). The full version of Lost? has a great clapping beat that would work extremely well in a huge concert setting. It also helps that it's a catchy and uplifting song. The marching beat is matched with great background vocals.

This brings me to the other feeling Viva gives you: it feels like the album takes place in a cathedral or a huge building. There are organs and the secondary vocals are choir-like.

If you are a Coldplay fan who only like songs like Clocks and Speed of Sound, then you might be slightly disappointed that there aren't many piano based "trance" songs. But there are songs that have a driving force and percussive nature to them like Viva La Vida that you can convluse your body to in classic Coldplay style. Some songs are in the album are just begging to be full tracks rather than just appended to the end of other songs. For example, Life in Technicolor does have that old Coldplay feel but is too short (a little over 2 minutes).

Be prepared to fall in love with tracks like Lovers in Japan and Strawberry Swing. Lovers has great percussion and a bouncing piano line with an ever so tiny layer of gloss. I keep saying gloss, but maybe it's something else on this track. You definitely need to listen to this track.

In the end, Coldplay's Viva La Vida or Death And All His Friends will satisfy Coldplay fans but may not necessarilly convert naysayers even though the album is more different than any other that Coldplay has created.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Coldplay First Listen - Part One

Coldplay Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends - First Listen

I am blogging my reactions to my first listen of Coldplay's new album. Be forewarned, I am a huge fan so you have to take that into consideration. Let's get started.

Lost? - Nice intro beat. So, far lives up to the acoustic version I've been listening to for a while. I'm still digging the acoustic version by a smidgen, but I'm sure I'll come around. I can really feel the cathedral/open echoing vibe this new album is sporting. It's new Coldplay. I think I'll have to get used to it.

42 - Another slow song (But, Blueberry, isn't Coldplay just all slow songs?). Okay, it's picked up the pace a little bit. I haven't gotten a "love this" moment yet for this song. The bridge in the middle is what throws me off. Actually, after the bridge, when Chris starts singing again it's not bad. It feels like Coldplay has went back to their Parachute routes more than their glossy X&Y, though I really like X&Y.

Lovers in Japan - Sick! Now I can tell I'm going to love this song-- just listen to the percussive piano. I think I may have my first "love this" moment. This is Coldplay at it's best, not too glossy, but definitely emphatic in it's driving nature. You can bob to this rock music. I'm still a questioning the layer of organ (?) or some sound that makes it feel X&Yish (think Speed of Sound-- I love Speed of Sound but this song doesn't need that background).

Reign of Love - Actually, this song is attached to Lovers. Decent. Better as a change of pace from Lovers' piano force. But what is that airy background vibe again? I never felt this from Violet Hill or Viva La Vida, so I don't know what's going on. Maybe I have it on too loud with my ear phones on. Okay it's getting better, I don't really feel it to much, or I've just been desensitized.

Yes! - The track is actually called Yes! I wasn't just sceaming in excitement. There's more acoustic guitar than the previous tracks. Wow! What instruments did I just hear? It's strings, but I'm not really good at identifying them. The strings part remind me of middle eastern sounds. It's definitely different. There it goes again. I like that part, actually. It's a nice reprieve. This album is going to take a few listens for me to love it.

Wait, the end of Yes has another song. It's upbeat and the vocals are airy and backgroundish. You can't really make out the words, but that's good in this case. It's a nice track. Also has that driving force but this time with electric guitar. Okay, I really like this track. Why couldn't this be a separate track? It's almost vocal-less, and purely instrumental. Good stuff.



This is a good chance to take a break. The title track is on (Viva La Vida) and you already know I love this track to death. It's probably my favorite of this album (so far) and of any Coldplay song probably ever. Probably.

Also, I have to go watch some awesome dancing in America's Best Dance Crew. So, holla.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Adventures on El Tren

Yesterday was the first day I might have possibly bought into the whole superstition deal that bad things come in threes.

It was Monday and I had just finished my only class for the day. It's some geometry crap that relies heavily on proofs, but anyway it was boring as usual. The first bad thing was the weather. Yes, it was hot because it's summer, but then all of a sudden, while I was trying to sleep in class, the thunder roll and the lightning strike. It started raining. It was pouring heavily and it was getting a little chilly. So when class ended I had to walk in the rain without an umbrella (ella eh eh).

Then, when I get to the subway station mildly soaking wet, I was thinking that at least I'm underground now. Well I waited for fifteen minutes and then I heard an announcement that the D train was going really slow and was at 59th street. It wasn't too bad, I was at 145th street maybe it'll get to me on time. Well after another fifteen minutes, there was another announcement that the train was still going slow and was still at 59th street.

I wonder what their definition of "going slow" is?

So I decided to suck it up and go back above ground and take the more expensive route using the metro-north railroad. I'm really cheap only because I have no job right now and as a student, I'd rather save my money for more fun endeavors like beer or movies or video games, not a train train ride.

As I get to the metro-north train station, I see that I have one minute to get on to the train that I needed. I thought to myself, wow, things are looking up, usually I have to wait a while, but at least if I run fast enough I can get on my train. So I jet across the steps probably scaring the old guy walking leisurely on the steps and as I open the door the train that I need is just about ready to close its doors. Wait! I don't even need to yell because I zoom past everyone and jump in the closest car.

Yes, I made it into my train. Bad things don't really come in threes. Except that wasn't my train. It was an express train going all the way to Connecticut passing by my dear old city just north of NYC. Sonofabitch! I had wished I would have missed the train like all those other times, but instead I make it in time for the wrong train, you ass. Anyway, I take the 40 minute ride to Stanford, and then wait another hour at the train station, all the while I am hungry because I missed dinner seeing as how my commute would now take me three hours.

I eventually take the local train back home from Standford. The thing that kept me going and focused through the hunger and waiting was I could not wait to get home at eat some lumpia. I resisted myself from buying any food at the train station. Plus, the food was just donuts because it was late at night and everyone eats donuts at night.

Finally, when I get home at 11 pm, I collapse mentally because the lumpia was not cooked and my motivation to survive the day was all for not.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Mid-Summer Movie Madness

This summer is shaping up to be a great summer for movies. Here is a list of the movies I am looking forward to starting with releases in June 20.

June 20.

Get Smart - Steve Carrell is always hilarious and the premise of him being a secret agent is too hilarious. I can't stop laughing at the trailer when Carell gets burned by lasers. Dwayne "the rock" Johnson also is a strong action-comedy guy. And, of course, Anne Hathaway is beautiful eye-candy.


June 27.

Wall-E - I shouldn't have to explain why this is on the list. In fact, Wall-E should be a list on its own. It's a Pixar movie and that should suffice. Plus it's about a cute robot in space looking for love.

July 11.

(Yes, I am skipping Hancock. I'm a huge Will Smith fan, but this superhero thing looks tired.)

Hellboy 2 - I was not excited for the first Hellboy, but it turned out to be a decent popcorn movie. The second outing looks to improve with the director of Pan's Labyrinth on the helm. You can see the great visuals and atmosphere with all the monsters and demons that Guillermo adds to the mix.

July 18.

The Dark Knight - The sequel to possibly the greatest comic book (and just plain films in general) film, Batman Begins. Need I say more. Well, I will. It's a good thing that Wall E and The Dark Knight don't premiere on the same weekend or else I would be torn.

August 1.

The Mummy 3 - People can say what they want about sequels, but the mummy franchise has always been a solid popcorn flick. This time the setting has changed to China, which mixes it up a bit. I'm surpised that I'm a little bit excited for this one.

August 8.

The Pineapple Express - This is another Judd Apatow movie. I really liked Walk Hard despite it's poor reception, so I am actually looking forward to more of his stuff. Also, James Franco is actually a hilarious guy (see his Apatow-directed skits on Funny or Die (dot) com).

August 15.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - It's Star Wars but completely in computer graphics. Looks like a fun diversion, but I would watch it for the action and possibly great visuals. Plus it's Star Wars, whether it's good or not, you have to see it.

Tropic Thunder - I seriously cannot wait for this movie. All you have to know is that a bunch of actors, who think they're in a movie, are put in a jungle in the middle of the war. Robert Downey, Jr. (Go, Iron Man!) who plays a white actor who gets surgery to look like a black guy for the "movie". Hilarity will ensue.



So those are my picks for this summer. For a more condensed list, I would recommend The Dark Knight, Wall E, and maybe even Tropic Thunder. Happy movie watching.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Yes It Was That Awesome

The Happening was a blast. I just saw it tonight and it has to be one of the funnier movies I've seen this year. The whole theater could not stop laughing. Who knew that Mark Wahlberg could have such vibrant delivery. I mean, when he yells out "What? No!", I wonder to myself if M. Night really is a brilliant playwright. The way Marky Mark pretends to be pretending scared was awesome. He plays a character who is actually pretending to be scared of this happening. In reality you can see he has no emotion whatsoever. I also loved the whole theme of this movie. In some movies you have to guess until the end what the message or twist is. In The Happening, you don't need to guess, because your first instincts are correct. You already know what is happening, even if it seems ludicrous, even if the characters on screen mention the causes but it sounds so unbelievable that you think to yourself that it can't be that obvious. No. The Happening is beautifully simple. In fact, M. Night was able to protract a sub-15 minute short movie into a huge comedy blockbuster. He could have made an impact with a short vignette, but he literally went the extra hundred miles of the USA east coast and gave you an unbelievable adventure through miles of green pastures. Gone is the boring suspense of Night's previous efforts. No work required here, guys. If you don't believe your first guess, then The Happening sort of wraps it up with a newsreel explaining the whole event with the final verdict that no one really knows how it's all happening.

I cannot wait to see the sequel titled The What-The-Fuck-Was-That-Piece-Of-Shit.





I love you, Zooey Deschanel. Please don't hate me forever.

Friday, June 13, 2008

June Blerg

After years of waiting, R. Kelly has been acquitted of 14 counts of child pornography. There was supposedly a sex tape of Kelly and a 13 year-old girl. At first, I'm a little pissed that another celebrity gets away with things that "normal" people cannot, but then I read that the family of the girl on the video never testified. So, if it doesn't bother the victim, then I'll hold my tongue and tears.

Plus, even as much as I think R. Kelly is a douche, you have to put the case into perspective. Here, the victims won't even testify so it's understandable that Kelly walks. Whereas when an unarmed man gets fired upon with 50 bullets, the police who did the shooting walk.

Balance?

On a more personal and non sequitor note, I am so frickin' lazy. I'm actually not scared of this lazy summer because it has been a lazy and depressing 2008 for me. All I ever feel now is meh.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Psychology of a Haircut

I always thought that Asian hair was non dissimilar to your Caucasian/white folks hair until I started caring about how I wore my hair and realized how varied hair can be. According to many websites, and most people I know, one with a round and youthful face such as myself looks best with short hair. Ever since college, though I may not have yet to full discover who I am as a person, I at least know that I like to rock the long hair look more often than not. When I say long hair, I mean any style that's not your typical clean cut look that is close to your head.

Why not just wear my hair the way most people say I look good with? Yes, I have worn my hair short recently (last summer), but I like my hair to express how I am feeling. With a short hairstyle I feel that gives off the message of "Hey, let's hang. What-up?!" I feel that it is a more of in your face style. It gives off the vibe that you are open to being read. Nothing really wrong with that cut. I actually agree that I look better with short hair, and I enjoyed wearing it in the summer of last year. But, sometimes I don't feel that way.

I like long hair because, to me, it let's me take a back seat and hide if I am not feeling down to hang. I use it as a protection to blend in. Now my hair isn't long like a girl's but it's really shaggy. More puffy, actually. Asian cats don't really have hair that's feathery naturally. Mine grows thick and full. It can possibly be interpreted as unattractive, but I believe that gives me a better edge personality wise. If I can impress folks with me just being myself, then I can have any frickin' hairstyle I want. Basically, I hope to use substance over style.

Plus, I like to rock out with my hair all disheveled-like. But I foresee that even before the Fall semester begins, I may have to get into the clean cut look. The short hair does actually look even better as it grows out. I can just gel it up and get the same laissez faire vibe. Ultimately, that's the message I want to give out. Lower expectations, but when someone gets to know me, and if I let myself get closer, they will appreciate moi por moi.

Now if I can just find a salon that can give me that shag haircut on a consistent basis, then I'll be so happy.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Too Hot

It is too frickin' hot here in the Northeast. I don't know how the West and the South do it, but this 97 degrees (F) plus weather is killing me. As a matter of fact, it has made me lazier than usual, if that's even possible. I do not want to leave the house because it's too hot and my skin burns easily since I'm so pasty white.

But the world believes I should go out more.

Just for health purposes, people need the sun to get their vitamin D. But what about all the skin cancer and skin damage? I could just eat more oily fish and take supplements. But I hate taking pills. I can take vitamins, but I won't enjoy it. With this burning weather I'd swallow a whole bottle not to have to go outside.

Thank god I am only taking one class this summer in the evenings. I won't have to dilly-dally all around the city in the afternoons. While that was so much fun last summer, I was employed back then and enjoying the benefits of teaching. Now I'm in a purgatory of uncertainty with the the only thing getting bigger is probably my weight.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Ella A A

I'm late to the party (or am I early?), but I just found out about the singer/song writer Marie' Digby. She pronounces her name marie-ey. She's known for her acoustic interpretation of Rihanna's Umbrella. I'm not a huge fan of Umbrella, Rihanna did an okay job but the acoustic version Digby does gives it an edge. The hip-hop/pop/rnb vibe that the original obviously puts out is filtered in the acoustic version, but not to a point where it's not danceable or recognizable. It's great how all the beats and production of the original is still somewhat present in Marie's version.

Big ups to Marie Digby and of course Rihanna.

On a more Asukal note, how cute is Ms. Digby. Of course, once again, a half white and half Asian girl is attractive. Big surprise. Now I did hear Umbrella before I saw who actually sang it so I'm not too douchey.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Cool Hough Kids

It's a Sunday evening and I'm listening to The Cool Kids. I just found out about them, of course via what some may think are questionable means: iTunes free tracks.

It's very much in the same vein as Lupe Fiasco. People say it's a throwback to the Hip Hop of the 80s. Whatever it resembles, me likey. As long as it's not like the crap that I hear blasted through cars all over the place today. I'm not a hip hop fan--it's fun to dance to when you're out and about, but to listen to everyday? Not so much. But The Cool Kids are something I can listen to. It's not tolerable, it's actually enjoyable.

On to another topic: dancing. Specifically, that Dancing with the Stars has some really hot girls. Of course, Cheryl Burke is cute. I've known that for the past few seasons, but I only found out about Julianne Hough today. I can't believe there's another blonde I can add to my mental cutie list. She is really something. I guess that dancing does your body good. It looks fun what with all the dancing shows that have sprouted recently.

If Cheryl wasn't a reason enough to watch DWTS, then Julianne shaking it will force me. Just maybe.

Proxy

Do we live proxy lives? Well, think about what you do and what you get. Do you do something that will immediately or directly get you what you need or want?

I've never really thought about this, but I say we do live disconnected lives. If you're working, you go to work to make money. The immediate result of working is receiving money. This money then is used to get you things like food or fun. In a life that is not a proxy life, one would do something where the act of doing is the goal or its immediate outcome is the goal. Proteanview compared it to tribes who go hunt or gather to get the food that they need. Or if you wanted to have fun, you would actually do the act of having fun like dancing.

I would say that the proxy life is what allows us to have complex and sometimes fulfilling lives if conducted correctly. But this is also a broad generalization. Maybe there are people who like working for a company and actually work for the goal of helping that company. Maybe some people don't pay for their fun. Maybe some people do gather their food at the end of they day.

For those who live the proxy life, the use of money and trade has allowed us to get material wealth and satisfaction. I like my video games, and for the most part, I worked to get money to get them.

Of course, there's always more to life than this proxy and daily grind. I think those who do the proxy thing really well, make loads of money so they can do loads of things. In those cases, the proxy life works.

For me, if money didn't matter, if I felt invincible, if I didn't need to worry about the future, I think I could enjoy myself more.

But that's when I ruled the world

I can't think off the top of my head a Coldplay song that featured violins so prominently as the driving rhythm as they do in their single Viva La Vida. Of course I am a little biased since I am such a huge Coldplay fan, but I really love this song. So far, they're two for two. I really liked Violet Hill, and I think Viva La Vida really complements it. Viva La Vida has a driving beat like many Coldplay songs, but I get a laid back feeling from this single. Whereas Violet Hill is a little more determined and serious like a marching band, Viva La Vida is just a genuine enjoyable feel-good song. It's like opening a box and a gust of wind hits you and you smile and listen to to the violins playing. I'm not trying to analyze the lyrics, but I like that they gave a shout-out to Roman Catholic choirs. I can just picture a choir full of singers in the black and white church frocks on a grassy hill and everyone having a good time in the summer. Except not to hot like an American summer, but what I imagine a European trip to a field would be like.

I really don't care that Viva La Vida is played in the iTunes commercial. I'm past judging when bands sell-out. If it weren't for "selling out" I would never have heard of Coldplay back in the day. One of their songs ("In My Place") was played on Smallville, when Smallville was still bearable and interesting. Since then, I never looked back.

But, I have yet to experience them live. I'm upset, thought that in their Norther American tour, they won't be selling tickets to a New York City showing. You have to win it, so I'm hoping I have good luck.

Violet Hill and Viva La Vida feel like Coldplay's newest effort will be really fresh. They seemed more relaxed and I'm hoping that each track spawns the same desire from me to listen to them on a loop.

Monday, May 19, 2008

M. Night's "The Happening"

M. Night Shyamlan's new movie The Happening comes out this summer.  Check out the trailer first then decide.  So far, I'm very "meh" about this movie.  It's definitely not because it's by M. Night.  I've already come to terms that The Sixth Sense will be his best movie, but I am not a serial M. Night hater.  You just need to realize how good his first movie was and then tone it a tad bit down for the rest, but I actually really liked Signs and I liked The Village (but not too much).

People and animals, I think, are dying all around the world.  People are scared and panicking.  No one know what's happening.  It sounds like a good suspenseful premise.  I feel like it could be a J.J. Abrams type of Lost thing, but quieter and creepy.  But it's just the damn trailer and makes it look horrible.  Rumor has it that there's no real resolution in the movie.  It might end in a cut-to-black or the actual "happening" is invisible or imagined.  Actually, as I am writing this I am starting to feel a little hyped for this movie.  I just hope that the resolution is satisfying or at least I can syphon some deeper meaning whilst everyone else hurrah-hurrah's for the stupid Hulk movie.  (I'm still going to see the Hulk.  But not in theaters necessarily.)

I guess you shouldn't watch the trailer.  That way, the whole suspense and atmosphere of the movie won't be spoiled.  I'm going to keep my fingers crossed, but I won't be holding my breath.  (Lady in the Water just hurt me too much.)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Oil

Did you know Brazil can function well even without foreign oil?  They have cars that can run on sugarcane ethanol.  If there were a situation that prevented the import of any oil, like, oh say, we run out of this "unlimited" fossil fuel, Brazil would not flinch.  I'm calling the U.S. out on this.  Why?  Why can't we develop technology that will make our economy and security that much stronger.  We will be independent and keep the earth healthy.  We won't have to unnecessarily kiss the middle east's ass.

Oil is not unlimited.  The world will run out soon enough.  Maybe that will be the only thing that keeps people from driving.  Also, we could just stop using plastic bags in supermarkets.  It takes oil just to make those bags that people throw away after they buy their grocery.  Switch to cloth bags that you can reuse again and again.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Lost Predickshuns

What the fuck is up with Lost? Seriously. I just saw the episode in the fourth season (current) that has Locke asking a dude in the cabin how to save the island from the boat guys. This show is constantly throwing me motha-effing questions. I seriously feel like I'm being jerked around. The Lost writers are having field days where they sit around in a circle, probably on the grass in the forest, while they smoke some herbs and shrooms, and they decide to put the most unbelievable things on the show. Not too unbelievable, but just crazy enough that you think what the fuck just happen in the last hour.

You name it they have put it in the show. You thought polar bears were nuts. You thought smoke monsters were insane. Try having time traveling and flashbacks that combine with flashforwards and an island that seems to have no rules. I think that the show ends with the island just having some goddam underground railroad system that supplies the insula with all the freaky shit ever. ("Hey, let's put a polar bear and some dharma cereal on this thing and send it to the island. We got nothing else to do".)

Now Christian, Jack's supposedly dead father, and just last week, also Claire's father, is actually on the damn island. And not just on the island like where-the-fuck-am-I, but inside the cabin with friggin' Claire. Claire is not even freaked out. She has even let her infant son go. What kind of fracked up shiznit is this bowl of honkey doo?

Stop jerking me, Lost writers! It's episodes like this when I just want to shoot myself and switch back to being a Heroes fan. Sure, Heroes is Lost lite, but that's because when they give you questions they answer it.

Let's make a bet, we'll see someone get shot on the island but mysteriously reappear later on. No,not crazy enough. He'll reappear as a girl. And he'll actually be Jack from the future. She'll be Jack from the future who had a sex change because that's the only way the island would let Jack back on the island.

And then someone will discover that if you stick an iguana in your bum, the smoke monster will appear in a pinkish hue and the theme song from Charles In Charge will announce its arrival every time. That way you have a head start.

Let's see. What else will Lost come up with. Okay, Locke will learn magic during an extended stay in the cabin. Not Harry Potter magic, but stupid parlor tricks. Let's make that one singular trick. He can turn a flower into a dove. And that dove craps green meteor rocks that people can eat just in case there's no helicopter drop-off. Of course Hurley will have a ball with this dove. Not because he's fat. But because instead of a regular dove face. The dove will have the face of Libby. Yeah, motherf@#$ing Libby.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Fringe and Dollhouse

Fox has a history for being a trash hole for reality television and crappo vision in general. They do get good shows once in a while, but they don't know how to market or handle it and Fox ends up canceling it (e.g. Firefly and Arrested Development). Recently, Fox has picked up orders for two shows that have great potential for next year's television run: Fringe and Dollhouse.

What makes Fringe and Dollhouse Asukal fodder? They're made by the Lost/Cloverfield guy (J.J. Abrams) and by the Firefly/Serenity dude (Joss Whedon) respectively. Lost and Firefly are two of my favorite things. That and kittens. Plus had Iron Man not been so hot, I would say that Cloverfield is the best movie I've seen in theaters this 2008.

Of course, Fox will fuck it all up, so I'll probably end up just adding a box set of seven episodes for each show next-next season. Fringe is about a government group that studies paranormal events. From the little I've read, it sounds like an X-files show. I actually never watched X-files when I was younger, so I'm actually not really looking forward to Fringe its content; rather, I'm just riding the J.J. hype train. (He made Lost and Cloverfield, so Fringe might be good.)

I'm more excited for Whedon's Dollhouse. The last thing of Joss that I was into was Firefly/Serenity, and since that's dead, I've been lacking in the Whed department. Firefly was the bomb. But even without Whedon's name on the show, the concept sounds loads more interesting than Fringe. It's also about a government group, but it's a group of people that can have memories or personalities downloaded and use that to solve cases. It's a secret group, I am guessing, but the drama and excitement comes from the question of whether it's ethical to do such things and whether the dolls have true identities themselves. There's a lot that can be played around there. It will of course have the wit that comes with Whedon's writing. Just think of Asukal but the exact opposite.

We shall see. Hopefully there will be more box sets of Dollhouse than of Firefly at the end of its run. Oh, and Tahmoh Penikett of Battlestar Galactica will be in it alongside Eliza Dushku. Penikett deserves more screen time as he was one of the better actors on BSG. Go, Helo!

Friday, May 09, 2008

Check Out My Stimulus Package

What would I do with my stimulus check? Let's see: I'm unemployed because I quit my job months ago. I'm still in grad school part-time for a degree that will get me back into the same job that I quit. I'm living at home and living-- err, I mean, mooching off of mama and papa (emphasis on the second syllables). And, I am slowly chipping away from my savings. Actually, it's not slow, I am blowing it.

Most people are going to save it. They're the smart ones. They're the ones with discipline and jobs. They have the foresight to look to their retirements. But what can I say? I'm in my mid-20s (almost wrote 'early', arghh!) and I think I should focus on enjoying myself. About a year ago, when I was enjoying work (summer is awesome, not just for students, but for teachers) I was thinking of saving up to go travel for this summer. I wanted to save up enough to so I could pay for my brothers also. But of course, plans change. Now I'm taking it slow.

I still want to enjoy myself. So I'll feed my second addiction, which is video games! Depending on how much I get, I plan on saving it temporarily and earmarking it for a nice Playstation 3. Grand Theft Auto IV is begging to be played, but I want that PS3 bundle that comes with Metal Gear Solid IV. I may have to spend more than the stimulus, but this is a great excuse to blow several hundreds of dollars. What was I gonna save for anyway? A car? Well, maybe that would make more sense, but I have the urge to splurge on gaming. Plus, you know my Wii is horrible for anything but Smash Bros.

I dont' know. Maybe I should wait until the price of a Playstation 3 is more manageable, like around $200 to $300. Who knows if I'll even get a check.

EDIT: On second thought, I don't even have an HD tv to enjoy this sucka.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Go, Batman. Go, Batman, Go!

Just to show you how much I love Batman Begins: I came home last night tired and allergic to everything, but I still popped in BB from NetFlix, and I still was able to stay up (3 am end time).

I couldn't watch it in the family's pseudo home theater/den because my bro was studying in there, but I was not easily prevented from enjoying god bat fun. I pulled up my lappy (that's laptop for you laymen), grabbed my bed sheets and jumped on to the uber-comfy leather sofa. It wasn't an ideal set up since I had to use headphones and I had to tilt my head to see the screen, but the softness of the couch alleviated some of the problem. Hey, it was better than sitting on a chair with the laptop on a table as if I were studying. Paper!

I was actually surprised that I enjoyed Batman Begins so much on the second time. Well, I was more surprised that I hardly remembered each scene. It was as if I were watching it for the first time. Still an unbelievable movie. The ironic thing is that the realism and plausibility of the movie is what made it so good.

Batman has always been that type of hero: relatable and human. You believed this rich man is so angry at life that he became this vigilante. You believed that he was inspired by his good parents to make things better in Gotham by seeking justice and turning away from his angry vengeance. Most origin super-hero movies are like that. It's great to see how Batman came to be. Literally, it was great to see how he learned to work in the shadows, where did he get the inspiration for his special gloves and his symbol. It was great to see how he acquired his gadgets and how his bat signal came about. So good.

I was also really impressed by the star power of the movie. Most movie stars stay away from comic book roles and roles that have them play limited parts in general. Cain and Freeman, two of some of the best actors around, had little screen time compared to Bats and action, especially Freeman, but that didn't stop them from playing their characters well. It's great to see that they're not too stuck up to be in comic book movies.

One may also argue that Batman Begins stands on its own outside of the comic book genre. I actually feel that Batman Begins can be a good movie by itself unlike movies like Spider-man and Iron Man. (Absolutely, under no circumstances, am I dissing Spidey and the tin can. Awesome and almost stands with Batman Begins in the best movie category. Actually, those three movies may switch places alot in my book.)

This post is already too long. I was going to argue against the naysayers who say nay to what they think was an unexplosive movie. Maybe later.