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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The panoply of human perversity boggles what we laughingly call my mind. Being in an anime fandom industry, I have the misfortune of seeing the unseemly from time-to-time. The Japanese are a lovely people, but that little island nation is a a bubbling fetish-pot. If it's weird, and you get off on it, there is likely a vending machine that sells it.

Perversity is not limited to the sexual, though. There are more benign weirdnesses. The news has been awash with tales of Infection Most Vile regarding The Incredible Edible Egg.
Two MAJOR egg producers have had to recall over half-a-billion chicken eggs due to salmonella issues. Over a thousand people have come down with the squits after eating at Sam 'n' Ella's Cafe'. The federal inspectors have finally gotten around to checking these mega-farms out, to find disgustingness on a grand scale. Chickens being chickens, you are never going to have a sterile environment, but things they found are beyond horrible. What if YOU went to work producing whatever widget you make for a living, and the guy next to you on the production line was a rotting corpse? Sweet work environment.

Do chickens have a sense of time, such that they would cluck to themselves "The foodening person will be along to get this horror out from my cage." or is the chicken's life one endless stinking suppurating NOW?

So, with the possibility of living in the loo for awhile, I get a jones for fried eggs. Not well-done, with a crumbly yellow yolk. No. Over easy, fried in butter. Oozy. Better yet, that amazing, horribly-named-yet-apt English confection: toad-in-the-hole. Two slices of toast with a hole cut in the center using a small biscuit-cutter. Plop those in the pan with some melted butter on med-low heat. (Heat the pan well first, then cut the heat down.) break one egg into each hole. Put a little butter on top. (I said BUTTER!) Let it fry intil the underside is firm enough to hold the rest of the egg in. With your spatula, carefully flip the toast/egg combo, to finish cooking. I poke the egg a bit to see if the yolk is still jiggly. When it has cooked as long I dare let it, onto the plate with salt and pepper to taste.


Monday, August 23, 2010





In the late '80's and early '90's after Doctor Who and the Britcoms, our local PBS station would close out the day with The Star Hustler. We got the heads-up on awesome astronomical phenomena for years, courtesy of Jack Horkheimer. His cheesy enthusiasm was a neat addition to our homeschooling household, and his Tomita-flavored theme was the best!

He has passed away, now, at age 72. Thank you, Jack. Though the later years were PC-titled "The Star Gazer", you will always be our Star Hustler. We'll keep looking up!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Exactly WHAT are they warning us about? What are we preparing for? A sudden destabilization of Earth's gravity? I cannot fathom this. The Dread Dormomoo, who is the farthest from Fox Mulder that I can imagine, harbors concerns of Dark Possibilities, like Alien Incursions or somesuch. Precisely what is in the tiny family bug-out bag? Freeze-dried provisions for a ride to Algol or Canopus? Hmmmm....

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Inroads into feminism

Here are two of our latest shirt designs. (They look better on the shirts!) I look at them as getting in touch with your inner Ward and June Cleaver.

I really wanted to do these. I designed the top one, Riatsila the bottom one.
They make me happy.

Now, the trick is, how do you market them, given the rabid feminist doctrine to which Western culture have been subjected?

You put 'em on the table, and wait.

The college freshman chick walks by, looks at the top design, reads it, and slaps the shirt with her hand. "That is SO wrong!" she huffs.

I look her in the eyes, and say with utter innocency "What is wrong with doing something to make someone happy?" Sometimes it clicks. If she is with a boyfriend, often they buy both designs, his 'n' hers, to be ironic. Sometimes, a couple will walk up, and she says to the other "I'll wear that if you buy it for me.".

I recognize the "irony factor" in many of these transactions, but I think that I am seeing cracks in the feminist facade. We will do our best to chip away at the edges.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Hello, Mr. and Mrs. America, and all the ships at sea:

I am reporting from the wilds of Northern Atlanta, at a Holiday Inn Select, wherein is held the Faerie Escape Atlanta, an odd little con dedicated to , well, the fantastical world of faerie. Pretty girls and older women are running around in woodland attire, trailing wire-and-silk wings, alternately hoping for and dreading a stiff breeze. There are steampunk encroachments, as well. We did the con shirts, swapped for a table, and now I am seeing every fannish person from Huntsville. Lots of Alabamastanians here, slumming in GA. We have had a lovely time, seeing old friends, making new ones, and seeing yet another facet of fandom. I have seen the teaser trailer of a lovely film, the Titania prequel by Lisa Stock. Get behind this work. It is a beauty! Hi, Lisa!!

We 'Varks have been uber busy with cons. G-Fest in Chicago was amazingly good, record-breaking, even. J.D. Lees, Ruth, and crew did the usual wonderful job of putting on a successful and drama-free Godzilla convention! We saw tons of fan-friends, and clothed lots of kaiju fans with our shirts.

Animazement (Raleigh, NC) was another outstanding anime con. We printed their con and staff shirts, lots of them, as well as setting up for selling in the dealers room. We LO-O-O-O-OVE Animazement. They are easy to work with, and know how to balance the fannish and cultural aspects of Japanese pop-culture. Like G-Fest, they bring Japanese guests: artists and voice actors to the fans of anime.

IkasuCon (Ft. Wayne, IN) was a record-breaker saleswise. It has historically been a coma con for us, but this year was our best year at the con. The food helps, too. "Pint and Slice" is a wonderful pizza place, featuring area brews as well. We show up once a year, and the owner rcognizes us, smiles and greets us warmly...she's a peach!


Hygiene tech begins to pall. The bathroom faucets with motion-sensor or IR valves still need work. The sensors can be picky, and in order to get the water to flow, it seems to onlookers that you must be playing a theremin, moving your hands about, but not actually touching the faucet. Perhaps a clever soul could incorporate theremin technology in the faucets, so that you can play ethereal music whilst getting the thing to turn on.