cat alarm clock

this video cracks me up.

It reminds me of this old Sandra Boynton mug that was in our family for years (who has it now? I don't know, but I should be up for my turn at it, along with the abstract Maziarz painting my parents got as a wedding present. To me it's always been a furniture store. If you ever see the painting, you should be armed with the knowledge that I was nearsighted by age five).

Oh how I wish I could find a picture of the mug. It was purple and saturated with hippos fornicating in every possible configuration.

Wonder how much it would fetch on eBay? But really, I doubt we could ever part with it ...


rose petals and coconut

Natalie brought me to an amazing sushi/potluck Thanksgiving. I spent much time in the kitchen making the sushi, thus ensuring a repeat invite next year. Someone contributed a turkey with a duck in it (this I discovered in conversation, not by inspecting its innards). There was a sacrificial fire in a welded flower firepit made for the occasion, and the hostess introduced this thanksgiving ritual: everyone wrote on a little paper something he or she was thankful for (the French have a gender neutral pronoun that doesn't turn you into an inanimate object. I suppose I'm not keeping with the Thanksgiving spirit by being pissy about it, but it's necessary to sublimate one's disgust surrounding the history of the holiday if one wants to have a proper, celebratory Thanksgiving anyway; so best I merely expel my pissiness on pronouns and get on with things) .. on etait thankful for. (maybe that's right. it's been only about eighteen years since I studied French. And I doubt the French let you stick a preposition at the end of a sentence either.)

Anyway, then we each took a rose petal (representing things for which to be grateful) and a piece of a smashed up coconut (ego, things to be let go) and were instructed to approach the fire, say a little prayer if desired, and drop the lot inside. "I ate my ego" said one guest, en route to the fire. I had taken a small piece of coconut, broken it in half and returned part of it, concerned there wouldn't be enough to go around. Oops.

Yesterday I went on the lunch ride at Sunset Ranch with Sharon and Lou and various members of their entourage. Appropriately, I rode a mustang who wouldn't stay in a single file line and, as a parting gesture, smashed me into a solid wall of rock.

Till next time.

Will be throwing much coconut into flame.


kung fu chicken / writers' strike

So I worked on this Burger King commercial awhile ago, and it's a big YouTube hit.
Here's the commercial:

It goes by pretty quickly, so now check out some photos of the dojo and environs, complete with ladders and paint equipment:

(not me in the condor with the silly hat)

all the wires you see below, snaking around the foo dogs, are fx cables with which things got knocked around during the chicken kicking.

mostly, my job was to age the doors and the (don't call them lions!) foo dogs:

Well, that was fun! I don't often get to see my stuff finished .. which is fine, since you can't inspect the afternoon's worth of aging on the foo dogs in the nanosecond the chicken kicks Big Foo's head off .. (par for the course) .. and that actually was a special breakaway foo dog, which was covered with new plaster and didn't take the paint very well so looked shoddy anyway. boo. Well, they pay me all the same. You see the photos of the nice ones. Wish I could show you the reference, but it's covered in paint and dust, stuck under a rock or in a tree, or in the back of some folder of Blaise's, or at the shop with a paint can ring in the middle, or maybe the art director's got it. I can't find anything like it on the web.

It was a million degrees out that day. Everyone was whining, epitome of workaholism Blaise included. Local people (unphased by the sweltering dust pit and, evidently, by gravity) kept arriving to climb a rock we had co-opted for the paint department's use of its shade; they left, then, miserably. (Thanks, spell-check. Wouldn't have guessed "unfazed" is the way you write that. but I much prefer it this way.)

On a completely unrelated note, or mostly unrelated to people who live here, but quite related to those who live in a world entirely outside of the black hole that is the film industry:
Are you confused about why the WGA is on strike? Never fear.

read this. (oops, gone.)
and/or this. (gone too. It happens ... )
and/or (especially, although it helps to be previously informed by other sources as to what the bickering is all about) this (not really written in 1969, I'll guess), in which the writer makes eloquent and very appropriate use of the word "sophistry."

or, if you are very lazy, at least watch this:

Negotiations resume next week. Let's hope the writers don't completely take it up the bum.


a blog of no importance

Raz has been ill, cowering under blankets. Fever of a hundred and five. I've clearly done something to anger the cat gods. With a little help from some antibiotics, he's slowly coming back to life ... walking around with his fur all on end (dehydration? got the chills? dunno) looking rather like a stuffed animal that's been through the wash.

He's cute this way, but I do wish he'd get better.

Some random photos I like, discovered via and/or stolen from A Visual Junkie's Daily Fix:

by Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott for W magazine

photographer unknown - but check out the whole editorial

still from Ingmar Bergman's Cries and Whispers

photographer also unknown ...

and by my new favorite photographer
(& creator of surrealist worlds) Eugenio Recuenco:

happy Saturday .. off to a birthday party (not mine)


what's weirder?

.. that I heard Rod Stewart's "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy" two separate times today, from two entirely unrelated sources?

or: that my eight year old nephew is reading Great Expectations?


more than just traffic jams and fake boobs

Yesterday I caught two amazing exhibits at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences: Period Costumes For the Screen; and The Art of the Motion Picture Illustrator.

Here are a couple of watercolor illustrations for Rosemary's Baby and The Graduate by William B. Major, whose work totally blew my mind and is allegedly being made into a book, thankfully, as most of his originals are owned by producers and art directors all over town. There are even better illustrations in the exhibit - without even knowing the films, they're just fantastic watercolor interiors. And the pictures don't come close to doing these justice.

Also here is a storyboard for The Birds by Harold Michelson:

Here are a few pix snapped with my phone in the costume exhibit, where they let you go bonkers taking photos, as long as you don't use a flash:

The Academy also is responsible for one of my all-time favorite art exhibits, The Secret Life of Sets: Set Decorators at Work. And while I was sleeping, I missed things like From Amarcord to Z: Posters From Fifty Years of Foreign Language Film Award Winners; Movies on the Mind: Psychology and Film Since Sigmund Freud; and Tech Art. This Tuesday: The Next Dimension: 3D and the Movies. Coming in December: The Art and Artists of Matte Painting. They also have tons of special screenings, showcases of documentaries and shorts, and lectures on every element of film production imaginable. If you love film, getting on their mailing list is a must. (all previously available links to exhibits have been removed, I'm afraid)

I also keep tabs on the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. They host my favorite show of the year, the annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design (generally runs from about February to April) and keep up a little online gallery of previous years' costumes and other past exhibits (things like .. costumes from Star Wars, mannequins as art, and the "Wizard of Shoes").

Speaking of shoes, if you're rich and have all the time in the world, fly over to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston sometime between now and March and check out Walk This Way. (Or you can just do the virtual tour, which introduces a pair of Manolo Blahnik maryjanes with an anecdote from "Sex and the City.") If you're really rich, fly over to the Tate Gallery in London and see this deliberate crack in the floor.

Lastly .. if I haven't yet plugged Rosson Crow, let me do it now. I am absolutely in love with her weird interiors:

... good night! sleep tight. don't let the bedbugs bite.