Archive for August, 2009


Phlorida, Paradise, and Paradox

Thus far, we’ve ventured through different regions in the United States, parts of Borneo, and some theatres.  However, we often overlook the finer things in life.  The very fine things that are both unique and paradoxical.  That or something so out of place that the order of the universe begins to collapse on itself.  Such was what I had witnessed and recorded for our readers.  I, your humble observer and slave, have ventured through the jungles of Florida and the bayous of Louisiana to bring you this exclusive.

Chopstick Font

Chopstick Font

This is what I call a “chopstick” font.  It is mainly used in Chinese restaurants although I have seen it used in some Vietnamese and Japanese restaurants.  In a lot of ways, it is a bit racist and patronizing for a font.  Of course, in terms of racism, you cannot beat the swastika font famously used by Hitler.  (It is rumored that the Russian forces decimated the printing presses in Germany during its invasion thus leaving no proof of the said font.)  However, it does seem somewhat fitting to be on a van for a karate school.  Does it not make you want to just go, “Hiiya!?”  Trust me, I do it every time I see the font anywhere.

Now, I thought that this was pretty close to a universal collapse but I was ready to be vaporized once I saw this.

That's right, folks.  Sushi-Thai

That's right, folks. Sushi-Thai

As you can see, I took this photo on my cellphone as I was praying to the gods above.  It is a restaurant chain exclusive to a city in Florida (of which I shall not name,) with a total of three locations.  Despite walking around town rest of the day opened-jawed and drooling uncontrollably, I was fortunate enough to recollect the day’s event to report of this near galactic catastrophe.  Of course, as we all know, the word sushi means fish in Japanese and the word Thai comes from Mue-Thai, a form of martial arts from Thailand.  To combine the two and serving Thai cuisine with Japanese sushi, sashimi, and rolls, I was on the verge of spontaneous combustion.  The clash of cultures in my mind was so great and vast that I blanked out.  When I came to, I was eating Red Curry with Beef with an order of Sushi Combination.  My palates felt as if it was tasting a nuclear blast at ground zero.  I could no longer function as a human being.

Looking back at the near calamity and how I came to when I returned home, I felt dizzy again only to wake up while typing this article.  Everything I type from here on, I do with the clarity of a bull.  Red bull, that is.

In our world, there exist many paradoxes but most likely they will not trigger a collision of paradoxical forces so great as to destroy the universe.  However, I would like to emphasize the importance and the need to be vigilant over such matters.  Our universe is precious and we should protect it with our lives along with the aid of the Department of Homeland Securities.  Times like this, if only we could have Dick Cheney to fight by our side…


District 9 aka Peter Jackson’s King Kong 2: La Revue

My partner still has not returned from his trip into the jungles of Borneo so I will venture into the realm of the film industry yet again.  This time, I will quickly review a movie that I have actually watched in its entirety.  Please beg my partner to return as cinema is not my forte.


I prepared myself prior to my free viewing of District 9.  In my wallet, I had stashed a coupon redeemable for a movie ticket at a local theatre.  In my head, I had prepped myself up with the rage that can only be filled with the expectation of yet another bad movie.  I kept thinking about Shia Labeof and badly rendered CGI animations in all movies made post-1990.  Even now I rage at the god-awful CGI work done for Clerks.  It makes me want to puke.

However, rage aside, I kept moving forward in queue.  As the end of the queue drew near, I felt a jolt of profound ecstasy.  I could see a gigantic poster of 2012 behind the ticket clerk.  I was thrilled.  I cannot wait to see 2012.  I love movies about the apocalypse or any movies that feature post-apocalyptic world.  Already, I knew I was going to hate and rage on District 9.

*enters theatre, buys a medium soda that was 25 cents cheaper than a large and 25 cents more expansive than a small, takes seat, watches movie, takes one bathroom break, finishes soda, finishes watching movie, takes second bathroom break, walks to car, drives home*

As I was saying, prior to watching District 9, I was prepared to rage at yet another badly done movie about aliens and explosions and explosions.  I was utterly distraught and rendered useless once I realized that the movie was … actually a good movie.  However, I will not disappoint the readers of this regular column.  I, your humble servant and writer feel the need to satiate your desire for me to punish the fiends that created this cinematic masterpiece and I take up my sword (or keyboard) in doing this AWEsome deed.

First of all, District 9 was the most horrendous piece of sparkling trash I have ever seen in my life.  It was like dropping Pop Rocks into my eyes and then hurling myself over the Golden Gate Bridge while I have military-trained snipers shooting at me when it was raining fire and brimstone.  I felt like Alex from A Clockwork Orange during his “rehabilitation.”  I felt like Two Face McGee from the Dark Knight when his face exploded.  I felt like Elaine in The Graduate when Ben took her to a strip club.  I felt like Anakin in Star Wars episodio tre when Obi-the traitor-wan betrays him and cuts him into pieces.  I felt enraged.

If you may, I, your humbler servant writer, shall list some of the issues I had with the movie.

1) The movie had aliens – movies with aliens will always suck.

2) The movie was made by Peter Jackson – Peter Jackson sucks.

3) For some odd reason, I had thought that this movie was based on a video game.  It is not.  Ergo it sucked.

4) Relationship between humans and aliens resembled way too close to reality (hint: the movie is set in South Africa) especially since it almost looked to be didactic to me.  It sucked.

5) ETC – I could name a thousand more but I shall stop here.

Your humble writer refuses to believe that I have actually seen this aberration.  I have nearly erased this fact from memory and thus can no longer recall any of the scenes of the movie.

Seriously though, if I wanted to see a movie with an interesting plot that carries through to the end while characters are fully developed and mixed with great sound/visual effects/cinematography/etc paired with on-par acting, I would live in France eating French fries and possibly doing a French kiss while drinking French wine and join the French Resistance against the Vichy government or maybe read a  bit of Sartre, call myself Guy-Jean, then throw myself over a bridge.  So, it saddens me that I was forced to watch this movie while not having to do any of the mentioned absurdities.

That was about it for District 9: the Review.  This is Jefe Tomas.  If I still do not hear from my partner from Borneo I will have to send out a search party.  If you happened to be named Henry Stanley, please drop me a line.  I have a job for you.


Fear and Loathing in Florida, the Uncomma version

Thunderstorms, lightning, mosquitoes, and alligators.  Four things that make up Florida.  They are like the four essential elements of matter, the four biles of human something or another.  Anything in the state of Florida is made up of one of those four things.  For instance, gator meat obviously comes from alligators.  The summer rains are part thunderstorms and part lightning.  Florida Highway Patrol is made up of lightning, mosquitoes, and a bit of alligator.

Now, some Florida natives might complain to me and say, “Hey, what about rain?!”  To which, I answer, “You dumbnut, rain is the conglomeration of all that is Florida.  Thus, rain is made up of all of the four Floridian elements,  thunderstorms, lightning, mosquitoes, and alligators.”  The answer is all there, folks.  Just combine the four elements and you too can create your very own state of Florida.

Back when I were living in California, I started to miss rain.  It would only rain in the winters in California and relatively speaking, not much.  I shed a tear of joy the other week while watching the forecast for the following week.  “Scattered thunderstorms and afternoon showers” was listed for every single day for the entire week.  I thought to myself that this had to be a fluke.  No, sir.  It is not a fluke.  Ever since I have arrived in Florida, the gods have greeted me with consistently violent thunderstorms and downpours that would knock the socks off of a heavily socked individual.  I was in heaven.

In my belated ecstacy, I attempted to photograph the awesome phenomenom.  I would have proof, however, the electricity goes out once or twice a day as well.  And since, I tend to attempt transfer of my photos during blackouts, I fail at posting a related photo to this particular posting.  But to satiate our viewers and readers, I shall do my best and prevent further blackouts as is my wont.


I want to be that guy with the cell phone.

If you have ever picked up a business brochure, you have probably seen him.





See that guy?  I want to be that guy with the cell phone.  He is the prototypical male adonis.  Women want him and men want to be him.  Move over Austin Powers, here comes the man with the phone.

I first met him while I was working for —-, a telecommunications company.  Here he was blossoming in his own glory.  Smack dab on the cover of the brochure which held outdated and sometimes anachronistic revenue results, it was as if he were confiding to me about how awesome he was.  By having his image on the said brochure, it is inevitable that the company’s profitability will be as awesome.

He wears his slick black Italian suit as if he were ready to face Satan in a single handed battle in Armageddon.  His jet black hair adorns his charismatic yet youthful face like a tiara on Miss Universe.  His head is held up high staring at the sun because you know the sun does not faze him at all.  Rather, the sun is being overshadowed by his major awesomeness and glory.  And finally, the cell phone is his weapon, his comrade, his right hand man, which he carries with passion as if it were surgically attached limb.  And everyone knows that he is, at that moment, conversing with God on how he is THE MAN.

Such is the impact of this image.  Needless to say, someday archaeologists from the future will be digging up marble statues of this man.  Chiseled with infiinite detail and ever engrossing power that just communicates to the viewer of this man’s marvelous blob of charisma and what can only be described as bigger than infinity will leave an everlasting desire to be… that man… even in the distant future.

If you ever run into him in real life.  Be very careful and don’t forget to kneel immediately before his presence lest you just might be struck down by his awesomeness and lightning or whatever else he may wield along with his mighty cell phone.

To be continued?


GI Joe: a real American hero, and succumbing to reality.

Last week, GI Joe hit it big in the box office.  Beating out real contenders such as Julie & Julia, a cooking movie about the legendary Julia Child, G-Force, a movie about talking rats, and the new Harry Potter which was in its 4th week.  Of course, grossing over $56 million over the weekend is no small feat, especially for the Goliath of a brand called GI Joe.  YO JOE!

The biggest question, however, remains.  Should I, your humble writer, go see such pinnacle of cinematic mastery?  Or should I just write about it without knowing the full truth?

At the moment, I chose the latter… for now..

Although, I cannot see how you can mess up a brand with a movie when it has strong definitive characters and a good storyline.  For instance, GI Joe has the typical good versus evil theme.  Such theme was utilized in Star Wars, Harry Potter, Gigli, etc.  Also, GI Joe has numerous round characters in its brand as protagonists and antagonists.  We have: Duke, the closet homosexual; Cobra Commander, a man with a drape on his head and also the enemy leader; Scarlett Lady Jane, your prototypical female protagonist support character; the Baroness, your prototypical female antagonist part-time femme fatale; and of course, Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes, the ninjas because you can’t have an armed conflict without ninjas.

From what I know of the movie, all the characters I listed made appearances, making the movie a guaranteed success.  The obvious applause by critics domestic and abroad proves once again that movies based on toy brands will most certainly succeed.  It is without question that women in their 30s are now desperately awaiting for the Strawberry Shortcake and My Little Pony live-action movie adaptations.  Bring your kids to the back draft of nostalgia.  Watch GI Joe.  I know I won’t but I know that’s a burden I must carry with me until I do get to see the movie.  For now, I will huddle down in the cave and pray for the storm to pass.  As they say in the InterWeb, “the ninjas are coming.”

Stay tuned for more on movie-related postings.  Knowing is half the battle.  GI JOE!  YO JOE!


End of -Endless Eight, Journey to the East, and Nicotine rages-

This week in the world, there were many MANY harrowing events, some worthy of note, most, not.

T'is the night.

T'is the night.

Endless Eight is finally officially unofficially apparently over.  I have actually witnessed what appeared to be the actual end to the Endless Eight story arc in Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.)  Astoundingly, I have simultaneously concluded my trip to the Eastern seaboard, cured some unknown disease, and possibly eradicated crime and famine.  Moreover, with such high hopes flying all over anime fandom around the world, it also might be a sign of change.

The economy will soon recover, more jobs will be created, health care will be provded, and fansubs will officially be sanctioned.  We are at that pivotal moment whence vision is met with irony and reality.  Missiles will fly and governments will be tested.  Sirens will scream and sailors will be swallowed whole into the sea.

Nicotine should be an illegal substance.  It is strong when ingested and it makes you go crazy when it is intentionally avoided.  “Nuff Said”


Congress created Dust Bowl, aliens, and Ozona

According to signs posted on I-5 between northern and southern California, Congress created the Dust Bowl.  In my limited imagination, I pictured Congress passing some legislation to shove five extra pages into the American history textbooks for the sake of one or two extra questions on the American History AP exam.  How dreadful…

Congress created DUST BOWL

Congress created DUST BOWL

However, off I went, after hearing the dreadful news of Congress creating a phenomenon only to make students suffer, there I was driving on I-10.  I-10 is the other lateral spine of America, the other one being I-80, methinks.  So, apparently Phoenix, Arizona happens to be on I-10 forcing myself to inevitably discover, or rather confirm, the existence of the ubiquitous university of choice, the University of Phoenix.  Here I was face to face with what I thought only existed on banner ads and television commercials.  The University actually exists IN PHOENIX of all places.  I was shocked beyond belief.  All of a sudden, an epiphany hit me like a ton of bricks, now the Dust Bowl seemed all too real.

University of Phoenix IN PHOENIX!

University of Phoenix IN PHOENIX!

Due to the rapture I had suffered, I had the brilliant idea of driving up to Roswell from I-5.  It meant I would be driving up north for about 250 miles on a state highway.  Of course, my brilliance had calculated the distance to be approximately 100 miles.  Upon driving for 100 miles, I realized that I had miscalculated.  I was still 100 miles from my destination.  Following a random screening by border agents whereupon I was to confirm that I was not an alien of any sort, I headed to Roswell; to see aliens, of course.

To the left is an unknown being wearing what appears to be a brown t-shirt and jeans.

To the left is an unknown being wearing what appears to be a brown t-shirt and jeans.

My short stay at Roswell was by far the most disappointing event of my life.  Even when compared to the fallout from the hottest chick ever to walk the face of the earth.  This was worse.  I expected to witness aliens dropping down from a mothership all over the city and flying saucers built into every building.  But what I was faced with was utter boredom.  A total of one block with spacy-themed stores.  I entered the lone alien museum that was situated there.  For a cover charge of $5, I expected to witness some sort of alien orgy.  Instead I was greeted with cubicle walls of enlarged photocopies of newspaper articles and pictures that were already ingrained in my brain from all the History Channel’s alien-related shows.  I was there, used the restroom, then left.  I think I cried a little too…

Now I’m in Texas.  A place called Ozona.  I think they got their name from the fact that it smells suspiciously of ozone.  Maybe this is the place where Congress created ozones.  Perhaps you’ll be seeing a sign on I-5 in the near future that says “Congress created ozone.”

Texas used to be a country.

Texas used to be a country.

Stay tuned for another episode of the ever-exciting adventure of Tom in Vunterland.

Oh yeah…


Biggest Pistachio I've ever seen.  Unfortunately the photo was taken from the side but the shell is ajar on the side revealing the green yumyum part.

The biggest Pistachio I've ever seen. Unfortunately the photo was taken from the side but the shell is ajar on the other side revealing the green yum yum part.

Of course, giant pistachio would only mean...

Of course, a giant pistachio would only mean...