Friday, 31 October 2014

pumpkin carving

I decided to try a Halloween Mr.Burns and Flanders. They turned out ... okay. You can tell what they're supposed to be I guess. I accidentally cut through a few supporting structural pumpkin areas on Flanders though, and the bottom of his eye and the top of his mustache both broke off. And you can't really see it in my photos but Mr. Burns' entire top jaw broke off while I was trying to clean off the gunk from the outside of the pumpkin before putting a candle in it. I pinned it back on but I was SO MAD.

Guess you need actual carving tools to do fancy designs properly. I was using a swiss army knife!

The kid did the Mr. Boogey or whatever that guy's name is from the Nightmare Before Christmas. And Ryan's is hard to see in the dark but in regular light it's awesome. He made his pumpkin into one of those candy dispenser machines. He's hoping to make some coin this Halloween! Ha.
We had fun, that's all that matters, right?

Thursday, 30 October 2014

October Links 7




you have a beautiful smile

At the bus stop the other day a sleazy looking man walked across a restaurant parking lot and said something to me. I couldn't hear what he was saying due to my over-the-ear headphones but my guard was up. I paused the podcast I was listening to and pulled one side off my ear.


"Do you have the time?"

Oh. Silly me, he was just asking me a normal question, and it would make sense to ask me because I clearly was listening to something on a device that would have a clock.

"Yeah," I said, relieved. This was going to be a normal human interaction for once. "It's 7:33."

"Thanks." He said and started walking away.

I put my headphones back on, pushed play, and then when I looked back up from my iPod saw he was still standing there, saying something. I pulled the one side away from my ear again and said "Sorry, what?"

"You have a beautiful smile."

And then he just stood there looking at me.

Well. That interaction was ruined.

Guess I'm not just a person with a clock after all.

I reacted by putting my headphones back into place with a blank look on my face and crossing my arms, basically ignoring him until he walked away. But all the rest of the way to work I felt so upset and I couldn't figure out why.

I guess it's just ... I never seem to have just a normal interaction with a man in the street. And honestly that hurts a bit. I just want to make a human connection every once in a while that doesn't end with "NICE ASS" or a creepy wink, you know?  Does every conversation always have to have an ulterior motive?

Anyway just wanted to share that, because it's still sort of bumming me out a few days later and I'd like to hear what some of you have to say about it.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Reading in 2014 - Book 31 - Seriously...I'm Kidding by Ellen DeGeneres

You know how people always say there's "dad jokes", like dumb puns and that kind of thing? Well I think of Ellen's jokes as grandma jokes. They're the kind of thing that I can picture a 60+ year old lady laughing and saying something like "You're so bad!"

Anyway this book was FULL of grandma jokes, and very little substance. I learned less about Ellen than I would watching one of her monologues on her show.

I'm saying this as a fan. I like her show, it's a feel-good time passer. And definitely the lesser of the evils of daytime television.  I admire her work ethic, and her commitment to keeping a positive attitude, and of course her love for animals and that she was super brave coming out publicly in the '90s and bla bla bla. I used to watch her sitcom all the time as a teenager.

Buuuuuuuuuuuut... this book sucked. It reads as a one-dimensional goof-off and as a reader I wanted more. I was disappointed that she didn't spend any time going back and maybe telling the truth behind those flat jokes. Where's the pain, or a struggle or something? Where's the real life? All we got was TV Ellen.

Maybe that's what her fans like, but it was not for me. 2/10

Reading in 2014 - Book 30 - The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

Yes, read it. I know it's everywhere right now and maybe some of you, like me, don't think the photo on the cover of a painting of a bird looks all that interesting but man oh man it gets good. And quickly!

You follow the narrator from when his mother is tragically killed in a ... let's say "accident" that happened in a NYC museum, and through the various households he ends up living in over the years. The book delves deep into his feelings ... wait, let me start that again because that sounded dumb. The book is super realistic and you can basically feel the character growing up as he ages in the book.

Bad shit happens to this guy and his friends, and crazy people come and go. I don't want to say much else in case I spoil a surprise plot point. But this is a really good read and you should give it a chance.


Monday, 27 October 2014

Don't set your sights too high. Or do. What do I know?

As some of you probably remeber, the youngest kid, the 12 year old, is in karate. He's been going five days a week (whenever his schedule allows for it) for over a year. He is committed, and working so hard.

Well anyway a few months ago he came home with a newsletter saying there was a tournament happening soon and one of the prizes for best kata in all the age groups was going to be a trophy. Not just a medal but an actual trophy. The kid had stars in his eyes, talking about how he couldn't wait to have a trophy, getting Ryan to come into his dojo to look at the trophies and saying things like "this is the one I'm gonna get", stuff like that.

I was starting to get worried. He kicked ass at the last tournament but he was in the beginner class that time. Now he's an intermediate, as a red belt. I tried to manage his expectations ... gently. I said all the cliche things; it's all about having fun, it doesn't matter if you win or lose bla bla bla. He said "I know" every time, but kept up with the extreme optimism.

On Saturday I had to work, and so Ryan and the kid went down to the tournament. I got a text a few hours later saying that there were no other intermediate level kids the same age, so he was placed with the advanced group, ages 14-16. Oh. Shit.

Shit shit shit.

Now he was competing with actual black belts. What the fuck.

But guess what.

His kata won the motherfucking advanced trophy! And he placed in both sparring events as well.

So the moral of the story is ... I guess don't let your dad's girlfriend talk you out of being super confident because it's possible that you'll literally beat up black belts.

The end.

A video posted by @_darthskater_ on

Friday, 24 October 2014

How many tattoos do you have? Part nineteen - elbow flowers

I just got these on Sunday, as you probably saw if you follow me on instagram. Anyway I LOOOOVE them. Caroline, who I work with at Tattoo Zoo was nice enough to help me figure out how to fill one of the last spots on my arm.

*record scratch sound*
WAIT!! Both arms are basically full you guys, so weird. Oh my god. No more arm tattoos???!!!

Anyway ...

It was a really awkwardly shaped spot so we decided something organic like flowers would work best, and she is the master of the super traditional classy tattoo, so obviously we went for a classic flower design. I love the black leaves.


Getting your elbow tattooed for the most part isn't as bad as you'd think it would be. To be honest it was mainly weird, every line felt completely different. Some bits I could feel in my fingers and some I could feel in my chest. I guess there are a lot of nerve endings in around the elbow! Surprisingly, the part that hurt the worst was that little third of a flower up beside the skull optical illusion, the furthest bit from my elbow. Bodies are so weird. 

I am so ridiculously happy with these little guys. They're beautiful!