I have to admit, I am totally impressed with Adel, a drag queen who goes by the name Leila. He was recently featured in the journal under the title “Dancers Cheer Islamist Defeat In Pakistan Vote”. While it’s easier being yourself in San Francisco, it takes a lot to do that in the North Western Frontier Province of Pakistan. NWFP is a place where non-conformists have a short shelf life, and forget being a drag queen, even listening to music was banned under the Taliban. Leila is illiterate and dancing is how he makes money. Not just that, he enjoys it, and beliefs that the recent defeat of the Islamist administration that had cracked down on the arts in general, would help revive his career.
February 26, 2008
February 25, 2008
The highlight of last weekend was of course WonderCon, the comic & pop culture mega conference. I got there by noon, in time for the last ten minutes of Q & A with Steve Carell & Anne Hathaway promoting “Get Smart”. I couldn’t take my eyes off Steve’s nose, that nose is the size of a sandwich triangle, wow. He did mention that he just put in some quality jury duty time, and that he is incorporating that in the new episode of “The Office”. The only other star sighting worth mentioning was Gillian Anderson & David Duchovny, they were there to promote the new X-files movie in the making. It was mildly disappointing that Seth Green couldn’t make it for the new Robot Chicken Star Wars spoof, but their pre-taped Q&A wasn’t too bad.
While last year, I über loved the alien costume, this year it was this guy. But the truly weird moment I had was sharing a moment of extended stare with Peter Mayhew, the guy who played Chewbacca in Star Wars. It was too late before I saw the sign above his head that read “I know you love me, but don’t stare at me”. Too late. Since that was fresh in my memory, I avoided staring at the Darth Vader guy or the original Hulk. The day ended with watching the world premier of the new Justice League movie, which wasn’t really great, but wasn’t a bad way to kill an hour either.
I almost forgot to mention the guys at Haunted Memories, who convert regular portraits into “spooky changing portraits”. The fun part is they sell their portraits in sets, a normal portrait and a spooky version of it. So you frame the normal one and hang it on your wall for a while and when people are used to the portrait swap it with the spooky changing one. They do custom work and just when I was plotting a prank, I was told the cost would be $500 per face for custom work, dang. But off the shelf they start at around $25.
February 21, 2008
I hate worms, especially caterpillars as they tend to be weird even by worm standards. But this Japanese Tea commercial is cute as hell.
January 8, 2008
A few weekends back at a birthday party, a friend of mine was talking about “The Man from Earth”. He was strongly recommending that I watch it, but would not say anything about the plot. All he asked was if I was religious… so moving forward, I finally got myself to watch the movie and I must say this is one of the best movies I have seen in the last year. I definitely don’t want to reveal the plot either, but I guess I can tell you it’s not sci-fi as the title may sound like but more of a narrative/ conversational movie.
Digging a little deeper (i.e. Wikipedia :P) I found out that the writer & cult figure Jeromy Bixby completed the screenplay on his deathbed, by narrating it to his son. Then it was given to director Richard Schenkman to finish it in a $200,000 budget, believable given that the whole thing happens in a living room with a fireplace. Even more interesting was that the producer of this movie, Eric D. Wilkinson had publicly thanked the BitTorrent enthusiasts who saw this film for taking it farther than the traditional scope would have allowed.
January 1, 2008
Bacon, sweet peppers – yellow, orange & red, cream cheese, tabasco.
Cut the peppers in half, fill with cheese, wrap with half a bacon slice (cut horizontally), bake at 375 degrees for 12 mins. Drizzle with Tabasco and serve with beer. Oh did I mention, I was supposed to have bought jalapeño peppers and goofed it up by buying sweet peppers, so had to salvage it with some Tabasco. The better alternative to this is to just use jalapeños, cream cheese and bacon. Simple and heart clogging, wholesome junk food!
December 27, 2007
“Attack of the
green giant leeches” (no surprise there)
“How the Grinch stole Kwanzaa”
“Jesse James meets Frankenstein’s Daughter”
“Santa Claus conquers the Martians”
“Star Wars – Contract of Evil” (not bad, just that I hadn’t heard of it before, it’s a fan film)
“The brain that won’t die”
Let me know if you know of any titles this bad or worse.
December 25, 2007
I had no idea the section reserved for Mario Batali in the Serious Eats website was called “Mario Unclogged” as in he is not wearing his clogs. Glad they put a picture of those little orange clogs, it’d have never struck me otherwise.
December 22, 2007
Saturday morning was spent at the Farmers’ Market looking, scrutinizing, sampling, talking & laughing. The spoils of the day ranged from maitake mushrooms, mixed germinated beans, raw feta cheese to great tasting free range, pasture raised eggs from Eatwell Farms. I learnt that raw feta cheese can be preserved by storing them in brine or whey, not that I am going to do it, but it’s good to know.
The mixed germinated beans were fun, I cooked it with my nutty flavored organic rice with red wine vinegar – very simple and healthy. I paired this with some saucy maitake. I am trying to break away from letting spices overpower the food which usually is the case with Indian, Thai or Mexican food and consequently killing the natural flavor of vegetables or meat. My new style is to use very few ingredients, with techniques like boiling, steaming, baking & broiling. So if basic ingredients is all I’ve got then I’d better go for the best eggs, asparagus, carrots, cheese you name it.
December 20, 2007
While Ms. Teen South Carolina was insightful in her explanation (now at close to 20 million views on YouTube) regarding why a 5th of Americans can’t locate the US on a world map, on your part how geo savvy do you think you are? You can test yourself here & find answers here. As an upshot, some of these facts can make for a good conversation starter at your holiday party.
Here’s a sampler:
1. What is the only U.S. state to allow its residents to cast absentee ballots from outer space?
2. The International Date Line runs through only one continent. Which one?
3. True or false: When crossing the border from China to Afghanistan you must set your watch back 3 1/2 hours.
Answers: 1. Texas 2. Antartica & 3. True. Virtually all of China is on Beijing time.