Archive for November, 2010

Happy Fangsgiving!

Saturday, November 27th, 2010

Happy post-Thanksgiving, y’all! I haven’t written anything for a while due to a combination of nothing interesting happening to me and being worked to the bone, but I’ve had a few days off and I have recuperated, and I also went to see the Thanksgiving Day Parade again from my office, which I will delve into momentarily. But first, I hosted the festive feasting at my apartment this year, and I cooked everything myself for the first time. I’ve never had that much raw dead poultry in my personal space before, I wasn’t really prepared for the sheer ookiness of the whole thing. I got parts-of-bird instead of one giant turkey because most of my family likes dark meat, so I was marinating the many legs and thighs and the one breast in a variety of vessels in my fridge overnight. I would forget they were there, and I would stumble into the kitchen for a drink in the middle of the night, open the refrigerator door and – AAAHHHHHH! Corpses! Corpses littering my – and then I would remember, that’s right, I put them there. This happened at least three times. Then I had to rub the skin with butter, really massage it in there, which caused me to have a total Silence of the Lambs moment, and the worst part of the directions was “put the remaining butter in the chest cavity.” Dear God, cooking can be so gross. But dinner went smashingly, except that I couldn’t find all of my grandmother’s fancy cutlery and that caused a few small problems. Have you ever watched people eat jello mold with herring forks? It does not go well. It looks like they are all unwillingly participating in an obstacle for a Nickelodeon game show. But the next morning I got to go with my father and see the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade from my office, and that was delightful. I’ve covered it before, and everyone has seen it live on TV, so I’m going to only talk about specific bits that were of importance to me. Many of the pictures are mine, and the rest are taken by my beautiful co-worker Lor who was stationed on the ground and often had a better view.

Because they’ve changed the parade route, they performances no longer happen right in front of my building, but around the corner, so the only way I could see the dance routines was to watch the reflection in the mirrored building across the street. If you look above the Foot Locker sign, you’ll see the reflection.

Pokemon went by and he had a really great preceding float. I believe all of the balloons had little floats before them or following them. I thought this one was shnazzy.

My favorite float was the Jimmy Dean Breakfast Food Items float. While I actively dislike his breakfast food items, specifically his sausage, I am enamored of the commercials and this float. Damn you, Jimmy Dean, and your sub-par product! You taunt me with rainbows and solar systems! You are like the Lisa Frank of pork sausage!

There were two castle-type floats that caught my eye. One was the Office Max float. Why they picked a Foster’s Home of Imaginary Friends-type house as their float, I do not know, but I thought it was great. Then there was the pink castle. Now, I am a female, I have always been (despite some rumors to the contrary) and I like girly things just fine. But this pink castle, it was just so, PINK. I was overwhelmed, like I had been slapped in the face with a uterus. Filled with glitter.

There were two costumes/floats I desperately want to be on or in some year. One was at the base of the Murakami balloons. Here are the Murakami balloons.

And here is the costume.

Maybe they’ll let me borrow the headdress part and I can wear on the weekends while I run my errands. I think that would be super.

The other thing I wanted to be a part of is the small following float of Spongebob Squarepants. There was a very nice mermaid riding a lobster.

I MUST RIDE THE LOBSTER. I would wave so hard, my arms would fall off. Mayor Bloomberg, let me ride the lobster please!

This girl had a hell of a job, walking in front of the Big Apple float with Kanye West on it. I wonder if people threw stuff at her.

And here’s Kanye.

Following the Big Apple/Kanye float was a herd of people dressed like cops and robbers because…crime in New York is up? Or down? Maybe Riker’s Island paid for the float? I don’t know.

The other bizarre combination was a Statue of Liberty float (okay) covered with the little minions from Despicable Me (huh?). My father has not seen the film and insisted they were salt shakers. What was neat about them is they were all little people in there, but I don’t think there was any way for them to see out, so the ones on the float were fine, but the ones wandering around the street waving each got their own handler who would hold their hand and gently steer them around.

There were two balloons I had never seen which looked like the die (dii?) from Dungeons and Dragons. They weren’t really near anything else recognizable, so I wonder why they were there.

I was really excited about this float: you all know that I painted a piece based on the story of the world being on the back of a tortoise, and then there was this! And I was there with my dad, who told me the story! I felt like singing “Circle of Life” from The Lion King.

I also loved the Ukrainian ball balloons.

And that’s about it. I’ve spent the rest of the weekend so far working on my own artwork, so hopefully soon I’ll have a cool post about that. In the meantime, I hope everyone has a healthy and happy Thanksgiving weekend.

Addendum: The person in front of the Murakami float was, in fact, Takashi Murakami. So the chances of me getting to wear that costume are slim to none. Someday, though, I would like to be as happy as he is in the second picture. So. Happy.

(These two photos of Takashi Murakami are from slamxhype.com.)

Doily pattern of death, Part 2.

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

I showed my co-worker my design and he said he found the leafy parts distracting, so I deleted them and whaddya know, it’s better. Now it looks like this:

I need to keep remembering that white space is not the devil. I know nature abhors a vacuum (and so do I – my dust bunnies are now dust rhinos! booyah!), but there can be empty space in my work and the earth will not collapse into itself. All kinds of pleased with myself, I immediately started to work on a second complicated doily. And after investing six hours in that one, I realized it was waaaay way too complicated.

SO MANY SQUIGGLES. And the lines are too thin. So, sadly, I broke it all apart and culled the ornateness down. After another four hours of fussin’, I got it down to this:

Good. Better. Less stuff all over the place.

I found a place that would cut out my stencil for me. Expect to see exciting things pertaining to this in the near future.

The gamut of emotions in mere minutes.

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that the last two Christmases seasons I have been obsessed with these dripping lights draped all over the trees outside my office. Every year I try to make an animated gif of them to capture the magic. I fail every time, but it doesn’t mean I won’t stop.

I decided this year to look at see if I could find them for myself and I could have drippy Christmas lights all year ’round, which would be GLORIOUS. So I did a hunt on the internet, and lookit! I found them!

(This is part where I am happy.)

And then…I see the price.

Holy crapbadgers! That’s five lights (I’m not counting the amount of bulbs, I’m just counting the tubes) for over $100 a tube. Ehhhhh.

(Now I’m sad.)

Maybe they sell shorter, thinner, less industrial versions. I’ll look for those.

And they do!

(Happy-ish.)

Aaaaand, then there’s the price again.

(Sad.)

Okay, now they’re $33.00 a tube. Better, sort of.

Long story short, they sell itty bitty ones for about $10.00 a tube. But it’s a really short tube and there are only 18 LED bulbs in each tube, so I would have to see them in action to see if they have the same effect as the long ones. It’s all been very emotional. I need a nap.

Addendum on December 7th: They have not put the lights in the trees. I am concerned. Perhaps there will not be drippy lights in the tree this year. I therefore see no reason to go to work until January.

Doily pattern…of death!

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

I’m in a flurry of creativity over here at Casa Rothmanpants, and I just spent a good six hours designing this really complicated pattern. I’m going to have it professionally cut out to be a stencil because there’s no way in hell I can cut it out by hand, not if I want it done in my lifetime. Ignore the leaves, those are there for my reference. The black part is the part getting cut out. The leaves I will be handpainting in later.

Now I have to see if I can find a place in the city that will cut this out for me without charging me all the money in the world ever. The hunt begins…

Halloween 2010.

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

Last week was Halloween, so I done got m’self all costumed up (as The Rotten Tooth Fairy, pictures below) and attempted to win an iPad for best costume at the work party. I did not win, but I think I looked pretty rad nonetheless. Here is a bathroom shot of my costume.

Someone described me as looking like a “chubby steampunk bounty hunter”, which I thought was an EXCELLENT description of my costume. I will break it down for you.

Number 1 is a bowler hat that I put a temporary band on. Then I printed the letters T O O T H and watercolored the paper so it looked aged. I put those letters on wires and hit the letters with some gold for added ping.

Number 2 is a necklace I strung with molars I made out of polymer clay for extra creepitude. Those were a big hit wherever I went.

Number 3 are antique dental instruments I bought on eBay. There are two pick-things jammed in my waistband, but the best one were the pliers that hung from my belt. The pliers are cupped inside so as to better grab at your toofers.

The work gathering was delightful. I always like to be reminded that I work with creative people, and that was in full force. Here’s S. being a Na’avi from Avatar. You can’t appreciate it, but his puffy white things have LEDs in them and they light up.

Here’s a timely costume – a bedbug. I think the eyelashes really make it.

Also timely, a Chilean miner.

Dead Marie Antoinette.

P. was a superhero, and he made a sign that said “POW” that you held next to your head while he pretended to punch you. I thought that was a genius costume. He now has, like, thirty shots with people making their best “punched in the jaw by a superhero” face. Here’s mine. I look like I’m being abducted by aliens, but I’ve never been punched in the face before by anyone, so I was woefully inexperienced.

My favorite costume of the day was the “Wrecked Fung Wah Bus”. The Fung Wah bus is a bus that goes from Chinatown in New York to Boston. It’s about $30.00, so in that respect it’s great. It’s not so great that the bus crashes from time to time. I am definitely biased because Chuck Norris the Oversized Pomeranian was part of the costume and I love that damn dog so much. He puts up with everything. He’s not bothered by this weirdness at all.

Someone else was a great New York Times crossword puzzle.

And this is my lovely co-worker B√∂rkke going as the personification of the song, “Once, Twice, Three Times a Lady”. She borrowed my t-shirt with the speaker in the front and I programmed it to play the song. Rather shnazzy.

They announced the winners, and I didn’t place, but I was totally okay with that because the other costumes kicked so much butt. Dead Marie Antoinette got first place and an iPad, Wrecked Fung Wah Bus got second (go Chuck Norris!) and Avatar got third.

The next night, I went to my annual Riedel Dance Company Halloween Fundraiser Dance Thing. As always, it was delightful. JR and his wife went as a band called GRAPHIC INTENSITY. They insisted that the band’s name be typed in caps.

There was line dancing.

And someone was there as Paul the Octopus, the semi-famous octopus who picked the winning teams for the World Cup.

And this was the costumed Paul the Octopus. He had a nametag with Paul on it and a soccer ball to complete his look.

Has everyone seen the video of the Red-Shirt-Guy at Blizzcon asking a question about World of Warcraft? If you haven’t, you should.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DwyMB19q7ms

Now, armed with that knowledge, I want you to imagine me cornering Paul the Octopus Costume Guy and saying in Red Shirt Guy’s voice:

“I like it, but it would have been easier to identify you as a cephalopod if you had painted chromatophores on your costume. Chromatophores are the cells in the skin of the octopus that allow it to change color and texture. Individual colored areas in the cell swell and shrink depending on the color the octopus is trying to mimic, like a TV screen.”

BECAUSE THAT’S PRECISELY WHAT I DID. I felt so bad for him. He was nice about it and everything, but I still feel like a complete dweeb.

When I got back to White Plains on the last Metro-North train, I wasn’t tired at all, so I trundled off in costume to the diner at 3:00 a.m., where I was accosted by what I like to call Whore-loween (girls, you have beautiful bodies, but for the love of Pete, PUT SOME PANTS ON), and it was loud. These broads were noisy and sloppy-drunk and made it very difficult for me to listen to my iPod and eat my sandwich. There was a lot of “You’re dead to me!” and “I can’t believe you!” and “Fuhget her, she’s a total skank!” and various other statements I can’t write here due to the coarse language. And then I went home and went to sleep while the sun came up. A delightful Halloween all around.