Tuesday, April 29, 2008

More recent purchases

For my birthday, Mordecai's parents generously sent me this nifty gift card from Best Buy:

I had some things that I had been meaning to purchase for a while, and I was able to acquire them all at once. It's pretty sweet to hold multiple things in your hands, not having to decide which to sacrifice for a later time.

From left, I got Marie Antoinette; The Police, "The Police"; Lost in Translation; Michael Jackson, "Thriller" (25th Anniversary, Deluxe Edition). My interest in the Police has significantly increased since singing "Next to You" and "Synchronicity II" in Rock Band, so I got some massive Best-Of compilation. And my favorite song by Michael is "Beat It," so I figured if I were to buy my first MJ album it oughta be "Thriller." I like the shiny, holographic cover, and splurged on this edition because it contains an extensive little booklet that may or may not be worth the extra $10. If not, I guess the translucent paper is worth it. Also, the DVD is a little transparent, which is pretty awesome (but the DVD is included in the non-deluxe edition; I'm not sure if that non-deluxe DVD is also sheer-like).

I've seen both Sofia Copolla's movies here, but I hadn't seen them since the theater releases long ago. I'm looking forward to the scenes featuring macaroons in Marie Antoinette. As for Lost In Translation, I've always had mixed feelings about it, and I still do after seeing it again at home. There are many questionable moments that render parts of the movie uninteresting, even bordering on offensive. But I'm always eager to see images of Japan, especially of areas that I have been to, like Shibuya, or of people I've seen on TV who I love, like Matthew Minami (a.k.a. Fujii Takashi). I think the movie was made with the right intentions, even if some of them slipped through the cracks. Overall, I have to say the movie makes me excited for my summer vacation in Japan.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Acid Wash?

I don't really remember when acid wash was big in the 80's or 90's. A lot of people cringe at the re-sight of them, but I don't see anything inherently wrong with it.

I saw one of the sales attendants at American Apparel wearing these jeans with sneakers, and I didn't find them to be "ironic" or whatever abused adjective it is that people are on these days. But the price tag wasn't all that appealing, even if each pair is uniquely acid washed. I also figured that summer is on its way, so I let this one go. Instead, I focused on something more attainable--the t-shirt. Lately I've been into purple, which has traditionally been a clothing color I considered grandmotherly and thusly avoided. I justify my sudden interest by saying that I'm wearing my favorite Skittles flavor, the underrepresented grape, or my favorite soda flavor. If you didn't know, a hot dog and fries goes best with Fanta Grape. (Welch's Grape needs to step their game up.)


It kinda looks dirty, but I think it's a nice change from solid colors or the "Tri-blend"fabric. One thing you will not know about this t-shirt until you've touched it is that it is so soft. I don't know why, if it's the wash, but I could live in this shirt forever. And then it would really smell as dirty as it looks.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Southern Style Chicken Sandwich

Joe wrote about McDonald's latest menu addition, the Southern Style Chicken Sandwich. Inspired, Mordecai texted me this morning suggesting McDonald's drive-thru for lunch. The bun was indeed soft like those of the Filet-O-Fish (but not perfect; it had a little butt crack-like line), and the sandwich was indeed pretty bare inside.

I liked the way Joe's photo exposed Burger King's pathetic breakfast wrap. I've made an effort to expose Southern Style's bareness. But the sandwich itself looked good (I had a American Idol Chicken McNugget Happy Meal), and with a packet of old ketchup lying around in the car, we get a satisfied customer, if not also enthused:

Monday, April 21, 2008

Cubs vs. Mets 2008

While I am normally a White Sox fan, and even though the Cubs destroyed the Mets, I have to say the game today at Wrigley Field was quite enjoyable. Mordecai wanted to see the Mets play in Chicago, and I can never object to a live viewing of Jose Reyes. Further, I have been wholly supportive of the Cubs' acquisition of Kosuke Fukudome and hope he does well with them. Our field trip to Wrigley Field wouldn't have been complete without another Japanese baseball fan, Kota, and our baseball-game-regular (though for Sox games), Matt Hacker.

My camera reduces the blurriness of close-up photos. It also serves as binoculars when we can't figure out who's pitching. Kosuke has a rather boxy body. It reminds me a bit of Domo-kun.

I wish Jose had been beaming his million-dollar smile so my camera's super-zoom could capture it. Instead, I have here his "I'm gonna steal second base for the 209381209381203912nd time" pose.

I can't quite figure out why I don't care for the Cubs despite going to many games during summer day camp (Crayon Campus!), despite going to said day camp with Shawon Dunston's daughters, despite spending many days after school down the street from Wrigley Field (Sanko! Pan Asia!), despite having Ernie Banks' signature addressed to me (BTC!). As of late, I look at that neighborhood with more or less contempt, for its infestation of pseudo-"pub" sports bars and for the despicable vehicular and human traffic the area produces on weekend evenings and game days. But I like going to baseball games, even if I end up paying more attention to the food and nearby roaming fans than the game itself. Today I derived surprising pleasure from wandering around the stadium alone in search of a concession stand that sold Red Rope.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Ideal dinner

My dinner location tonight:

We discovered this Tastee Freeze at California and Armitage at the end of last summer. In honor of today's temperature (70F), I requested a trip here after tonight's American Idol. As we pulled up, I remembered I had a late lunch and only a salad of lettuce, cucumber, and soy nuts before Mariah's performance. So I decided I had room for a side snack and ice cream.

We shared a Snickers Sundae and cheese fries. No one beats Doggie Diner's cheese fries, but I always appreciate the effort by other fast food locations. The bottom of the sundae consisted in chunks of Snickers and caramel, which required digging. It was a little difficult with a sub-par plastic spoon.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

For the Record

Mr. Porok handing out candy on Friday!
What's scary is that the stuff on the board looks insane.

I was going to say that I'm getting tired of people writing Mariah Carey's new album as "E=MC2" because at least according to the album cover, the "2" should be a superscript. (It turns out I don't know how to write superscripts in Blogger, but I'm also not a professional journalist covering her album for an official publication.) Obviously, there is a difference between multiplying and squaring something. I had a decent foundation in mathematics, even if I ended up being the only Asian in Mr. Porok's class junior year. Anyway, it turns out that Mariah herself says to MTV that "It's sort of like, the emancipation of Mariah Carey, times two." That was disappointing.

But me and Mariah, we go back like babies and pacifiers. I'm a pretty loyal fan (I was one of the few pathetic souls who went to her Charmbracelet Tour but missed out on her less embarrassing, more successful Rainbow Tour), so I refused to download her album through torrents before the release date. Indeed, I contributed to her beating Elvis as the solo artist with the most #1 singles by purchasing "Touch My Body" on iTunes and downloading it as a ringtone. Today, I watched her "mentor" American Idol contestants on TV, and then I made my mom take me to Target to get her album. I opted to get the "Deluxe Limited Edition" of her CD, which cost a few more dollars. I'm not sure what's so deluxe about it--normally in diners, you get soup or salad and some fries in addition to your sandwich. In this case, you get "an exclusive iPod skin and fold-out poster." They don't mention this on the sticker, mostly because it's pretty obvious, but you also get the now-ubiquitous flimsy cardboard CD case as well.

What am I supposed to do with this creased-ass poster of the cover?

That serves the real purpose of being the lyrics and liner notes sheet?

If I had known the contents of this edition beforehand, I probably would've gotten the original version. The most coveted version of Mariah albums are always the Japanese ones anyway, with all the special bonus tracks. But the experience of breaking the plastic, of digging into the CD case seeking treasures, and then feeling simultaneously duped by the "poster"/lyrics sheet and giddy for the silly iPod skin is priceless.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Toe Cleavage!

Earlier this week, I ordered a pair of pointed flats from the Gap. They are a part of some "European Collection" that is available only through their website. I had a gift card, so I basically paid for one of them. I probably won't get to wear them until after I'm completely healed, but the "limited edition" factor and that they were featured on New York Magazine's "Shop-A-Matic: Spring Shoes" had me on board.

But on Gap's website, or New York Magazine's website, no model, no mannequin, wears the shoes. All I knew about the shoes were that they were two-toned and pointy. I forgot to consider how they would actually fit on a human foot. Generally speaking, this is why we should purchase shoes in person, and not online.

But everything seems fine, and the two tones look kinda cool. I was worried about the pointiness, since I'm not used to that. They're even comfy! Who knew. So far, so good.

But TOE CLEAVAGE?! This seems a bit risqué. What about the children?! I like the shoes enough to get used to it, so it's not a big deal. It was surprising though, and I wish there were pictures of someone wearing the shoes just to know beforehand. Well, now there are such pictures available on the Interwebs. And once I start wearing the shoes, I will have well-aired toes.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Golden Nugget

When Maddi (Mordecai's sister) first started visiting us in Chicago, she remarked that we ate like 12 year olds. I think this was because our dining destinations were something like: Weiner's Circle, Doggie Diner, Arturo's, and Margie's. With or without out of town guests, we still eat out a lot, and a lot of the times we end up at the Golden Nugget on Clark (we've got a good Friday/Saturday waitress here, and this location is somehow more appealing than the one on Diversey, which is a lot closer to us). Tonight I had waffles with some bacon.

Their bacon is so good. It's probably mediocre by "true" bacon standards, whatever that might be. But I ask very little of my bacon-cookers and bacon: it shouldn't be raw or burnt, and it shouldn't be all fatty. Bonus points for shininess.

I also enjoy their crappy cup of coffee. It is typical diner coffee, but I love it. I don't particularly drink coffee at home, and it's largely because the coffee Mordecai makes tastes different, and also because I don't have that cup and saucer. In short, I cannot duplicate the experience of diner coffee, so I don't bother.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Fluffy Day

This morning on the way to school I picked up some McDonald's Hotcakes. They were nice and fluffy. Mordecai suspects they are called "Hotcakes" because they are not made in pans, so cannot be called "Pancakes." Whatever the case, they are not bad.

Before I left for school, my birthday presents from Mordecai arrived. My leg is resting on one of them in the above picture, while I sit in the other. I got a Kapibara-san tissue box holder. I named her Lucy, after the kapibara who appeared on Shimura Ken's animal show. She is so soft and fluffy, even more than my hotcakes. The chair is Philippe Starck's Louis Ghost chair. Mordecai had shown me this chair before, and my interest in it had grown since I saw it in TeenVogue in one of those sections where they revamp someone's bedroom in NYC. It is surprisingly comfortable and just generally awesome.

Carleton and Lucy hang out at my desk.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Ankle Progress

As of last Thursday, my left leg has been liberated from the hot pink cast. I am still bound to crutches, but I now have what is called a Cam Walker brace, which helps me slowly start walking again on my own. It basically looks like a moon boot on steroids; a friend has also dubbed it the "RoboCop Boot." The walker is removable, so it enables me to access my left leg again. This basically means I can wash it and wear my jeans again.

Bathing and wearing jeans are good things, but they don't hide the conspicuousness of the brace. I wonder if most people don't care about this, concerned only about the forthcoming return of their leg's health. But for me, this means the return of my right black Hunter boot! The top of the boot is at the same height as the brace, so there's a little bit of matching going on beyond the color. I'm very glad I didn't pick the hot pink Hunter boots back last fall.

Because my Hunters only work with my jeans or tights, and in order not to live out of those two jeans for the next month, I've ordered some leggings from American Apparel. So I guess in lieu of Avril Lavigne-on-crutches, I'll be rocking a somewhat Lindsay Lohan-on-crutches look.