Archive for the ‘Stuff’ Category

Y’all need to learn about Ea-nasir.

Sunday, April 30th, 2023

Short backstory to Ea-nasir: In 1750 BC in Ur (modern-day Iraq) some guy named Nanni bought copper ingots from a guy named Ea-nasir. Nanni, upon arriving to Dilmun to pick up his order, found the copper to be substandard. Nanni then carved the first negative Yelp-esque review in history. The internet has, for the last few years, been delighted by Ea-nasir and his shady ways.

There are Tiktoks galore about the Ea-nasir saga.

There’s even a whole, complex Ea-nasir / Simpsons series.

It’s kind of amazing. But we shouldn’t be surprised that the first complaint took off like gangbusters on the internet. The internet is for porn and complaining. It is its nature.

Art is now confounding.

Saturday, April 1st, 2023

I do not understand cryptocurrency. I totally cop to that. I assumed it was like money but magical internet money. I feel like it’s more than that. For example, there’s this art piece called G.E.M.M.A. by a street artist I adore, Tristan Eaton. Here are some of his murals.

 

G.E.M.M.A. appears to be a computer-generated version of his art with variations of all those elements Tristan incorporates into his work. That’s cool.

            

But you can’t purchase any unless you have crypto and then… you don’t necessarily own the piece? I was like “Here’s an idea – how about I give you money, or beans, a big bag of beans, those are worth something, you can plant them, and then in return you give me An Art? We revert to the ancient concept of the exchange of payment for goods and services. No? Okay.” =insert my confusion=

 

Update: Now you can buy some of them in this plane of existence so why didn’t they do that before? I’m going to take a nap.

 

I am cool and hip. This is it. This is the one time.

Saturday, February 18th, 2023

Recently I saw a post on Tumblr.

Now, you might be “that is certainly a collection of words that mean nothing to me” but I understood! I understood all of it! And I’m going to explain it to you because it’s actually quite interesting.

This is a person named maia arson crimew. The all lowercase is intentional.

Her chosen pronouns are she and it. I’m going to use she for this post. Her last name is a mashup of “crime” (because she commits crimes) and “mew” (because she likes cats). She uses a super-cute cat drawing to identify herself. I love that her website looks like 1999 garbage.

She’s a Swiss 23-year-old and she’s a hacker. maia is quite good at it, too. But her latest act was to get the TSA no-fly list and release it to the public. The way maia showed she had accessed it is a point of interest to people: She took a picture of the site with a cute lil plushie and said “holy sh*t, we actually have the nofly list. holy f*cking bingle, what?!  :3”

People loved her whole personality.

 

But a lot of people were not okay with how she chose to identify herself or live her life, despite the fact that she bothered precisely no one about it. She is:

A therian, or individuals who believe or feel that they are non-human animals in a non-biological sense.

A bi lesbian, and a polyamorous one at that, who has nine girlfriends. I don’t know what a bi lesbian is, but again, she’s bothering no one so go for it.

A hard-core socialist. From her Wikipedia page: She has cited curiosity, anti-capitalism, anarchism, and opposition to the concept of intellectual property as the motives for her hacking, stating that “caring about literally nothing but profit definitely doesn’t result in security.”

On her Twitter bio, crimew describes herself as an “indicted hacktivist/security researcher, artist, mentally ill enby polyam trans lesbian anarchist kitten.”

A small portion of the LGBTQ+ community has problems with how she chooses to identify herself. They want her to be called something “sensible.”

NOW

Let us refer back to the original image.

We can now translate it! Clarity!

Bonus: She’s really quite delightful.

And if you want to hear her speak about cybersecurity, here’s maia is on a podcast.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FgbQb7G6e7w

I left the house! (Last year! But let’s not judge!)

Tuesday, October 11th, 2022

For the last few years (ignoring the suckfest that was Covid) I would go to San Francisco to visit my friend Ness-Ness. She usually takes me around and introduces me to things that aren’t a television or a computer or my bedroom. It’s very good for my mental health and well-being. Last Christmas she took me to the Oakland Zoo for their Christmas lights, they call it “Glowfari.” I was delighted by how many light-up animals were represented, specifically ones that were of great interest to me. It’s not often you get flies circling a corpse flower at a children’s event.

First, Bug Tunnel! I think it’s the queen ant and her giant egg-laying rump. I would want to use it as a chuppah for my wedding because I’m a romantic.

There were praying mantises (mantiiiiii):

And a rhinoceros beetle:

And this Tim Burton fella:

And the aforementioned flies with a corpse flower:

Plus two insects, I think they’re cicadas, in flagrante delicto:

Some of the figures had moving parts. There was the jumping spider:

And a centipede which was creepy as hell but I can’t hold it against the sculpture, centipedes give me the heebie-jeebies all the time.

*shudders*

A gathering of gastropods. We’re clearly taking some artistic liberties with the shell colors, but that’s fine. I can’t imagine any scientists are picketing outside.

Boneyard with porcupine adjacent.

Bearded dragons.

Dancing cranes. I loved the way these were set up. Very ethereal.

Bamboo forest complete with pandas. Note the pandas are not in flagrante delicto, in keeping with their character. They are notorious for not banging it out when given the opportunity.

African hornbills, nice to see birds I know all too well showing up.

Monkeys designed with eyes that know too much. The only major complaint with these animals are the eyes. The eyes are the windows to the soul and a lot of these animals sold their soul to our Dark Lord Satan.

Here is a picture of Ness-Ness’ husband to give you a sense of scale. These figures are all really big.

The African plains were by far the most impressive of the tableaus. There were massive crocodiles with jaws that opened and closed:

A boar with the ultimate blasé expression:

And both kinds of baobabs. There are the ones found on the mainland and the ones only found in Madagascar.

Gorgeous flower tunnel with animal heads. I think that baboon has lascivious thoughts. He has intentions. #HelloLadies

And this moose is going to straight-up kill this other moose. We have entered into a soon-to-be violent moose interaction and I felt compelled to back away slowly.

It gave me this kind of energy:

We went back the next day during daylight hours and the next post with have those pictures.

 

The cornucopia of internet has been bountiful this year.

Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

1. Lies! I have been fed lies! I was today years old when I realized quite how jacked up our world maps are. Seriously. You ain’t ready.

You know how Asia is a billion times bigger than the U.S.? It’s not. Canada’s not that much bigger either. And Antarctica is wee compared to the mammoth island we assumed it was.

 

2.  It was also extremely recently when I learned this about eel teeth.

I was still recovering from the Alien jaws-within-jaws thing some eels are bringing to the horrifying table and then see-through toofers had to show up. It’s too much, eels. Take it down a notch.

 

3. Today is all about education. This is what that container of ice cream is called. Not that I ever thought about it but now I know so that’s cool. I can store that in my mind with “plastic ends of shoelaces are called aglets.”

 

4. One final nugget of knowledge: If I ever go back to Japan, I’m visiting this island.

Poison gas AND potential snorkeling? I’m 100% on board.

 

East Africa, Part 21: Zanzibar.

Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Stone Town! But first, let’s look a fezzes. Fezzezzes. Many hates of the fez style. Zanzabar is Muslim so the men wear what is the appropriate headdress in this case.

You’ll also notice many of the women and girls wearing head coverings.

Here are two excellent examples of women wearing ankara material which I spoke about earlier.

On the road to Stone Town: Would you like some soccer balls? Men’s belts? The scalps of sea maidens guaranteed to bring curses into your home?

We drove through the area of Bububu. The name is thought to have come from the trains going by on the tracks but no one knows for sure.

Okay, Stone Town. Zanzibar’s capital city. Stone Town is knows for its large carved wooden doors. We did a walking tour to see as many doors as we could.

The first thing I noticed was how many buildings were falling down. The second thing I noticed was how many men were just… hanging out. Loitering. It may only be a woman thing, but men existing without clear purpose scares all of us. So I picked up on it quickly.

Here are some explanations of door designs: https://stickymangorice.com/2016/12/04/doors-of-zanzibar/

Electricity is reeeaaaaal concerning. I don’t know if the people there know how electricity works but I do, a little, and this cannot end well.

A tree I liked.

There’s no nice way to explain this next bit. Zanzibar was famous for trading three things: Spices, gemstones, and slaves. I thought the slave trade was solely through the left side of the continent to America but unbeknownst to me there was slave trade on the right side to India and Asia. I blame the U.S. educational system for my ignorance. In the center of Stone Town there was an enormous tree where the slaves were lashed and sold. When slavery was abolished an Anglican priest came and built a church where the tree was.

That’s where the tree was.

Apparently the columns were installed upside down. I can’t tell but I imagine some architects are ripping their hair out saying “How can you not see???”

I went deeper into the history of slavery on the island and it is horrendous. Like concentration-camp-level atrocious. There is a sculpture next to the church commemorating the slave trade. There’s also a museum worth visiting that was eye-opening. I recommend it.

I liked the way the Christianity and Islam live harmoniously together.

The locks and chains were to keep women in the house. Because, as you well know, if you let’em out, chaos.

All kinds of people came to Zanzibar to trade in gems, spices and slaves. You can see influences of all different cultures, mainly Arab and Indian. There’s a graveyard for the Sultan of Oman and his sons from the late 1800s.

And the remains of a fort.

Seriously, is everyone okay with the electricity system? No one is concerned?

The best takeaway image from the island was this impromptu picture. Men, sitting outside a store that sells tanzanites (a rare gem only found in Tanzania) eating fresh-caught and cooked prawns off a tray.

Thus endeth my trip to Africa. It had many awesome aspects, specifically the animal reserves. If you ever get a chance to go to Kenya and/or Tanzania and experience that, do it without delay. We will now return to our regularly schedule of random whatnot and charts. Thank you for your patience.

Home improvements! A thing that I do! Part 1.

Friday, June 11th, 2021

A few years back I had the PTAC replaced in my bedroom. A PTAC, in case you don’t know, is a heating and cooling unit that hangs out under a window. Hotels have them.

Unfortunately, they do not come in a variety of flavors and colors. They’re all pretty much the same.

Beige, beige, dirty eggshell, beige and, for a change, beige. I wasn’t in my apartment when the people installed mine so when I got home I was appalled by the workmanship. I’ve never seen a more “Here’s your stupid appliance now shut the hell up” job in my life.

I mean, look at how they slathered the silicone. Did they use a spoon? It’s an actual tragedy.

Anyway, after angrily staring at this for years, I decided to finally do something about it. I chose to pull off the silicone and reapply it with care and also to paint the plastic housing so it’s white and matches the wall. I started with the left-hand corner.

I learned that the installers stuffed this foam filler in the space so when I go to the hardware store I need to buy something similar.

And then I realized I needed to pull the front of the PTAC off to remove all the silicone.

Do I know how to put it back? No, I very much do not. But I’ll figure it out, and in the meantime I can clean off all the dusty crusty whatnot that’s been there for I don’t know how long. I’ll keep everyone posted on how this goes. Thoughts and prayers, thoughts and prayers.

Why I should not be in control of my finances, #643.

Tuesday, June 1st, 2021

I recently learned the most interesting piece of information: Bone Music.

The short version is after WWII Western music was banned in the USSR (no surprises there). But the cool kids desperately wanted to hear this music. One guy snuck in a bunch of records but there was no vinyl or petroleum or any material to copy the records. Then someone had a brilliant idea – use all the discarded X-rays from the hospitals. That’s how this got the name Bone Music. Here’s some additional information from Wikipedia:

Medical X-rays, purchased or picked out of the trash from hospitals and clinics, were used to create the recordings. The X-rays were cut into 7-inch discs and the center hole was burned into the disc with a cigarette. According to Russian music critic and rock journalist Artemy Troitsky, “grooves were cut [at 78rpm] with the help of special machines (made, they say, from old phonographs by skilled conspiratorial hands)”; he added that the “quality was awful, but the price was low, a ruble or a ruble and a half.” The disks could be played five to ten times…. The clandestine approach to circulating banned popular foreign music eventually led to a law being passed in 1958 that forbade the home-production of recordings of “a criminally hooligan trend”. The “hooligan trend” refers to the stilyagi (from the word stil’ meaning style in Russian), a Soviet youth subculture known for embracing Western styles of dress and dance.

Which is how I ended up on eBay and now own a bone record of “Beer Barrel Polka” on a pelvis.

Sometimes I worry about Japan.

Wednesday, May 5th, 2021

I keep getting ads for a place called Sugoi Mart. They seem fine, normal, mentally sound.

But now I get different ads. Disturbing. Concerning. Off-putting.

Hey, Sugoi Mart, you okay? Do you need someone to come get you? Let me know if you need a hand there.

 

Addendum – 5/16/2021: That have posted additional products. My concern has not ebbed.

Randomry you didn’t know you needed, but you do.

Saturday, May 1st, 2021

1. Mirabelle the Snail by Snuff Puppets.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAQSNBNsUOY

The music really compliments the video. If I saw that crossing the road I would need an asthma inhaler, I’d be laughing so hard.

 

2. There’s an episode of the older Ducktales (I still know all the words to the theme song for some reason) where, in the back, the eye chart says “Ask about the Illuminati.” I’m sure conspiracy theorists got all manner of excited about that.

 

3. Did not know about this creepy-as-hell mask women used to wear. You would have to hold it in place using your teeth. I imagine your jaw would get really tired being clamped like that. Never mind the potential for drooling.

 

4. I love this. There’s a commercial for a birth control product called Paragard. The commercial has smiling dancing people. However, as the commercial ends, it is clear the director called cut and the actors were like “whatever, just give me my paycheck already.” I guess that was supposed to be edited out but it was not. The tall dude in the middle actually checks his watch. But my favorite is the curly-haired blonde on the left.

 

5. I was working at an advertising agency when I noticed a rainbow on the wall. The sun was hitting something and throwing up that rainbow. Before it was gone I ran to the window and it was an crystal award shaped like a pyramid! Pink Floyd!

 

6. I saw a sculpture that I assumed was a joke. It is not a joke. It’s a legit sculpture. With dick grabby-grabby.

The story has man-eating horses. Trust the Greek gods to be absolute lunatics.

I tried to find this sculpture as a lawn ornament but the tallest version I found was 14 inches and like $100. If anyone finds it in lawn ornament size and at a reasonable price, please let me know.