Observations on the Road to...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

The holidays are always a time that gives you that warm fuzzy feeling inside... or at least, that's what the feelings they're meant to evoke. It's been a long year for me, personally, and I'm feeling particularly festive/jolly/that warm fuzzy feeling. I'll get to that in a year end recap entry a little later. Til then, I'm "off the grid" for a few days (not that that matters that much, I'm sure. When I'm "on the grid" it's not like I've made that many posts the last few months), so have a Merry Christmas / Hanukkah / Kwanzaa or whatever brings about your holiday spirit.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


No one should be surprised at the influx of good movies that should be seen this winter season, because that's usually how it always is. It's prime restate for Oscar contenders. Why do you think Warner Bros. is re-releasing The Dark Knight in January?

As mentioned in my previous entry, I saw Milk on Saturday, yesterday. I lived in San Francisco for two years, and you don't live in the city and can't get choked up by this film if you know this city, regardless of sexual orientation.

Harvey Milk, and what he helped to accomplish is a huge part of San Francisco history, and the Bay Area at large. With what is going on socially in our country right now, this film is especially poignant.

The whole thing about past being prologue couldn't be any truer now than it ever has. California's Prop. 8 in 2008 is an evolution of what California faced when Milk led the charge against Prop. 6 in 1978.

With the issues that the country is going through, as far as socially, economically, and abroad, it is, personally, a little weird, unnerving, and yet an exciting time that we are living in right now. There's always talk about doing something, about changing things, and about hope. And then there comes the time when it's actually happening in front of you, and you are seeing it with your own two eyes.

Gus Van Sant and Sean Penn are at the top of their game here. Van Sant blends some actual newsreel/stock footage from the 70s' into the narrative. It's not a technique that no one hasn't seen before, but when executed well, the result is nothing but gravy. The last time I saw it done was well was George Clooney's Good Night, and Good Luck a few years back.

As usual, you can always count on Josh Brolin to be good in roles as the antagonist and/or very-layered arc types, and he does it well here again playing Milk's and Mayor George Moscone's eventual killer, San Francisco Supervisor Dan White.

Penn's performance is very warm, and with a lot of heart, and is unmistakably Harvey Milk, and although Prop. 8 may have passed in November, it really is nothing more than a speed bump. Just look at who was elected President in the same election. As Milk stressed constantly, "you gotta give 'em hope." This bio-pic does what other good bio-pics do, it inspires.

Friday, December 19, 2008

What needs to be seen: A few choice reviews.

I was able to catch preview screenings of Clint Eastwood's Gran Torino and David Fincher's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. The protagonist in both films undergo very fascinating experiences through different means, but the themes in both films are similar in ways as well. I won't tell you what they are, because that'd be telling.

Clint Eastwood's Walt Kowalski and Brad Pitt's Benjamin Button reach certain viewpoints of the world, with the main crux of each film is particularly focused on unlocking the untold and mysterious aspects of both protagonists.

Walt Kowalski is such an engaging character. That despite being as old and old-fashioned as he is, his mind and heart are as strong as ever.

Benjamin Button is the kind of character who lives such an extraordinary life that you have to wonder if a person like this actually exists.

Both films are well written, produced, and directed, but it's leads in Eastwood and Pitt that bring an energy and magnetism to their roles that really pushes their respective films over the top. To that end, both films must be seen.

Tomorrow, I plan on seeing Gus Van Sant's Milk. Which is another film with a primary focus on a very magnetic protagonist, except for the fact that it's based on a real-life person. I've been wanting to see this for the longest time, in anticipation, and I don't think it'll disappoint. I'm sure I'll post a write-up on this in the next couple days.

Also, another recommendation to pass along: Phonogram 2: The Singles Club #1. This bad boy came out last week, but haven't had a chance to plug this. If you love music, dig magic, and think comics are cool, then you really need to read this comic book. By all means, you should pick up the first Phonogram series, but you don't necessarily need it to enjoy what's going on in this second series.

Friday, October 24, 2008

I'm Not Voting on November 4th...

Preface: Yes, I realize what's written below is a little cliche or maybe over the top with the gushy, but so what if it is. I felt the need to point it out.

I'm not voting on November 4th because I already have. I had to do my ballot by mail this election because I guess there wasn't enough people registered in my immediate area, or something or other. I forgot what the letter said exactly, and I don't have it with me at the moment. I was a bit disappointed with that aspect. I was actually looking forward to standing in line the morning of election day, but oh well. At least I got to vote, right?

In the primaries when California participated in Super Tuesday, I was able to walk to the polling place, and vote Obama, and for the general election, I of course went with Barack Obama again. Kind of a no-brainer for me; my mind has been made up since January of this year on who I planned on voting for.

One of the things that I like to think that I'm good at is being a good observer, and the way I see things progressing in this country is that we're inching closer to the center of that political spectrum as it is another generation's turn to step up to the plate. It's our individual experiences that shape our view of the world, and we are not always going to agree, but electing Obama as President would be that shift that this country needs right now.

As Colin Powell said in his appearance on Meet The Press, Obama is a "transformational figure" for us. There are so many things that an Obama presidency will represent for us, and I am hopeful that he is elected. I think it important that we elect him, because in the same way that a main character in a story has to make a decision at the end of the second act/beginning of the third act in order to demonstrate how far he or she has come in their journey, we as a country are faced with something similar. Put it this way, we have to change our environment, before the environment forces us to change.

I'm not saying John McCain isn't an electable candidate, because had I been of age in 2000, I would have voted for him. But somewhere in the time between then and now, I just don't see what I thought appealing about McCain. True, I was only 16 years old by the time the 2000 general election rolled around, but maybe that's all the more reason I'm troubled with what I've seen out of the McCain campaign in the run-up to this election.

I realize that there are a lot of things to be unhappy about these days, but like Ferris Bueller said, "Life goes by pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

So take a moment to think about this election, and I really hope you'll reach the same conclusion about who should win this election, and why Obama needs to be elected. Also, in that same vein, for you Californians, please vote No on Prop. 8.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Be care what you wish for: you might just get it!

So it is indeed going to be the Tampa Bay Rays and the Philadephia Phillies in the 2008 World Series.

I swear, Game 2 of the ALCS was absolutely awesome to watch, and so was Game 7. Seeing the Phillies win the NL Pennant was awesome to watch, too. With the World Series starting up tomorrow night, I'm excited to see two completely fresh teams having a chance to win it all.

It's always fun to upend the system, and seeing the Rays and Phillies in this Series tickles me to no end.

But when it comes to taking a side between these two, I'm gonna go with Rays in this one. Like I said before, this Tampa team just reminds me so much of the Oakland Athletics of the early 2000s, except for the tiny fact that the Rays have won at least one playoff series, let alone two. Moreover, reaching the World Series.

As for this year's World Series, I do believe this is at least going to six games, although seven is very likely as well. And in the end, this series is going to Tampa. So we shall see by the end of the month. Go Rays!

Friday, October 10, 2008

October Baseball

I meant to post something a few days before both the NLCS and ALCS opened up. But better late than never.

It would have been nice to have seen the Chicago Cubs at the very least get to the NLCS, but oh well I suppose. The two teams that I really wanted to win in their divisional series match-ups were the Philadelphia Phillies and the Tampa Bay Rays. If nothing else because I like the make-up of both teams. Particularly, because both the Phillies and the Rays are two teams I haven't seen play for an extended time in the post-season. Although, with this being the first time the Rays have ever made the playoffs, everyone can say that about the Rays. During the Rays' divisional series with the Chicago White Sox, I tweeted that this Rays club reminds me of the Oakland A's of the early 2000s, except for the fact that the Rays won their divisional series... on their first try. It took two two seasons away from the playoffs, and major roster changes for the A's to finally make it to the ALCS for the first time since 1992. There is just a free spirit about the Rays that I identify with.

Now, if the Los Angeles Dodgers end up beating the the Phillies, I can handle that. I like them for the most part. At the very least, compared to the Boston Red Sox, I think I wouldn't mind seeing any of the three remaining ball clubs winning the World Series.

In the Red Sox and Anaheim Angels (they play in Anaheim, that's what they should be called) series, I was kind of torn at first who to root for: Do I root for the my Oakland's chief division rival? Or the Boston Red Sox? (note: I give my computer screen the "evil eye" as I write "Boston Red Sox.") I eventualy went with the lesser of the two evils: the Angels. Right now, the Red Sox as well as some of their fans just need to be taken down a peg or two. I won't say all Red Sox fans because I do have a few friends that are die-hards. They get a pass, but that's about all I can handle.

So in the end, I'm pulling for the Phillies and the Rays to make it to the World Series. And as far as the chances of seeing that match-up actually taking shape?

It's a possibility. The Phillies already beat the Dodgers in Game 1 last night, and the Rays won the American League East, and won their season series with Boston, 10-8. But then again in the post-season, you're only as good as the game you're about to play. Just as the White Sox, the Milwaukee Brewers, and particularly the Angels and Cubs. The latter two who had the most wins in the American and National League in the regular season. In any event, it's October, and despite the A's not in the postseason, I'm excited to be watching.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Treasure Island Music Fest 2008

I wanted to go to Coachella this year, but being what my financial situation was, it was either Coachella or New York and San Diego. It’s pretty obvious by now that I opted for the latter two destinations. However, I was not about to miss out on a music festival just up the highway in San Francisco at Treasure Island. Especially with Justice and CSS playing the bill, and as the schedule was made clear, the two bands that closed out Saturday’s end of things. As much I’m sure Sunday would have been, Justice is who all of us wanted to catch.

Thanks in large part to Dang and Alisha, I’ve gotten into Justice this summer, while I owe my thanks to another friend for getting me into CSS late last year. The name of that person: well, it might be best to just let that be for now.


Basically, all that needs to be said is that it was an entire day of awesome motherfuckin fun! Everyone will say they have the best friends in the world, so who am I to not miss a chance to harp on that same sentiment with my friends? Because in addition to the likelihood that I’ll be going to Coachella next year, I am also currently contemplating going to Glastonbury! Anyone else down to party?

Monday, September 15, 2008


A few weeks ago, I started thinking about a few things in regard to the kinds of taste that we as comic book readers and moviegoers have, and after writing it up, I sent it to a friend, and... well, more after the quote box. Here's what I had initially written followed by some after thought type stuff:

I work a few days of the week at my local comic book shop. A few weeks back I overheard a couple customers and the owner of the shop, talk about the Barman R.I.P. storyline. I wasn’t particularly paying attention until one of those customers made an off-handed comment about Superman: “That’s why Superman sucks.”

A little while before I had also overheard another customer with his little brother or cousin, the elder one probably mid to late twenties, and the little bit of their conversation that I overheard ended with that Superman “is just too invulnerable to relate to.”

As far as some readers out there not “getting” Superman, I in turn don’t really understand: what isn’t there to get? But that’s the thing about personal preference, isn’t it? We all have different taste, and not every single one of us is going to agree on things. Superman is a God-like figure. His personal story, and how he came to earth is such an epic origin. Superman’s biological parents sent their only son into the galaxy’s vast unknown, and onto a world where he would possess powers beyond ordinary men. Batman’s origin is rooted in a deep-seeded yearning to avenge his parents’ death. Wonder Woman’s mother sculpted her from clay. There have been numerous men to hold the Flash mantle; so much so, there’s a museum dedicated to the hero. There is an innumerable amount of Green Lanterns in the universe, yet through the years there have been a handful of Lanterns to occupy sector 2814. The strength of the DCU is that their characters and their stories are inherently epic.

On the other side of the street is the Marvel Universe. Most of Marvel’s characters don’t seem as epic, and are as normal as can be, but somehow find themselves in extraordinary circumstances. Peter Parker was a kid part of a middle class family, who like anyone else has their ups-and-downs. He’s given these wonderful abilities, and yet experiences heartache and tragedy over and over again. The Fantastic Four are a family of science, and instead of dying out in space in an explosion; they come back to earth with abilities given because of that explosion. Steve Rogers was a soldier enlisting in a war that he believed our country had to absolutely win. Their stories just seem to resonate on a more personal level.

I’ve only been reading and collecting comic books since 2002, and still think I’m only just scratching the surface of what comics can offer. For that first year or so, I got into comics mostly reading DC books, and some Marvel books, too. But I didn’t start expanding my reading material beyond the big two universes until I picked up on Y: The Last Man. I found it unique in not only that it didn’t have any capes, but also in it’s execution.

Alfred Hitchcock is my favorite director. I saw Psycho for the first time in 9th grade. In fact, some of my friends and I had recreated the film for a short stage play for our drama class, with one of them suggesting we do Psycho. And as it was my job to translate the script to fit our play, I had to dissect the characters, story, and plot, and then help perform the play itself. I made the realization of not only discovering how awesome film really can be, but it was what inspired me enough to think I can aspire to be a screenwriter / filmmaker. I had that same wide-eyed look of wonder when I first started reading Y as I had when first watching Psycho.

Being the film nerd that I am, I can really dig old black and white films, but I have friends –who aren’t into classic cinema/studio era films– that just can’t sit through black and white films. Adversely, I once had a film professor that believes that the films of today are nowhere near as creative as they once were in the studio era. Another film professor –last time I heard– had seen Citizen Kane eighty-four or eighty-five times. It’s likely that number is up closer to ninety by now. When discussing film noir with a friend of mine recently, he mentioned that although he realizes and appreciates all of what Citizen Kane brought to cinema, the film itself just wasn’t his cup of tea. It’s totally understandable. I’ve seen the film four times, but I ended up somehow taking a power nap during the second act in each of the last two viewings. Yet I do geek out at specific scenes just like anyone else who comes across their favorite scenes in their favorite stories. Citizen Kane is a favorite film of mine, but it’s not as high on my list as it would be on my old professor’s. I understand why it’s so great, but I also understand how tedious it might seem to most.

I started out reading primarily DCU books, but gradually, my taste widened. I still gravitate mostly toward DCU books, but there are a little more Marvel and creator-owned/ independent books thrown in here and there. Everyone has their own preferences in a myriad of things, not the least of which are comics. Sometimes as I try to figure out how a character in a story ticks, it somehow bleeds into how I might analyze a work in general.

People are the most fascinating creatures on the planet, and I can’t seem to ever be surprised by that. You can get two totally different reviews of a comic from two different friends, and each argument raises valid points. So what makes one person’s opinion more valid than the other? Well, if you have to choose one, then you’re likely to choose the opinion from the person you trust most. But what you must also consider is which person best realizes the appeal of the story and/or the character(s). But in the end, each one of us will read or watch what we read or watch because it’s what we like; or whatever the reason may be. It’s just fun trying to figure out why someone’s taste is different from your own. It helps you understand your taste, and help gauge whether or not your taste changes from time to time.

When sharing my thoughts on this with a friend of mine a couple weeks back, he pointed out that my argument just seemed, well, obvious. And of course, he’s absolutely right, but I just wonder if readers out there that are willing to try to understand characters and stories that aren’t necessarily to their taste. I’d like to think that I would, and have tried to give my best college effort to understanding material that others have no taste for. I also like to think of myself as a good observer of things, as someone who can read a particular situation well. Maybe I’m just a big softie, but there is underlying merit to the stories that we read, watch, and hear about, and the characters that inhabit them. Sometimes, I just wish that people’s tastes were broader than they are, and those characters and stories that are not to a particular person’s exact taste not be immediately dismissed.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Happy 24th, Justin!

For Reference

Today is what would’ve been Justin’s 24th Birthday. I’m sure that today, and this next week is gonna be just as weird/difficult/reflective as it has been the last four years since Justin’s passing (September 4th).

Not since 2004, have I had such an extraordinarily challenging year to waver through. This year I lost my maternal grandmother, which was excruciatingly hard. Also, my paternal grandmother’s health isn’t doing all too well. Also, I’m not exactly happy with where I am in my life right now. But in spite of that line, I am trying to use it as fuel to get myself out of the rut I feel I’m in; or at least do so as best as I can.

Don’t get me wrong; there have been a lot of good times this year to balance all the difficulties. Within the last nine months both my sister and brother have made new additions to their respective families, bringing the niece/nephew count to eight. That’s not counting to the nieces and nephews I already have from all of cousins. One of which just had another baby matter of fact.

What’s more, I actually got to travel to New York for the first time and San Diego for Comic-Con this summer, too.

Yet, at the same time, I’m just ready to clear the slate and move forward. But today has me thinking about Justin, and the good times I know my friends and I have had without him physically there with us, and knowing how much he would’ve enjoyed getting to do the things he wasn’t able to while sick, and the good times I wish he could’ve had since his 2004.

Justin had a way of not letting the bad things in his life effect his bright outlook on life; he didn’t sweat the small stuff. It’s one of the things that I try to adhere everyday. But every now and then, especially every year this week, it’s just a wee bit more bittersweet.

Happy Birthday, Justin!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

50 Things I Love About Comics

So after reading a few posts off of 4th Letter (which in turn David had found from blake-reitz.livejournal.com), I decided, what the hey, I'll jump on the meme.

So here are my 50 Things I Love About Comics. The list is comprised of single issues of particular titles, titles themselves or GN's, comic properties in other media, creators themselves, and a quote that I don't think I'll really ever get tired of. Some of the items may actually cross-over with one another, but whatever. Here's the list:

1. Y: The Last Man #60
2. Gotham Central #37
3. Seven Soldiers #1
4. Gotham Central #12
5. Infinite Crisis #4
6. The Spirit #6 (Darwyn's run)
7. Tiny Titans #1
8. Captain America #25 (vol. 5)
9. Ex Machina #1
10. Solo #10 (Damian Scott issue)
11. Detective #787
12. Captain America #10 (vol. 5)
13. Y: The Last Man #58
14. Batman #603
15. Amazing Spider Man #36 (vol. 2)

16. New Gods/4th World
17. Runaways
18. Teen Titans Judas Contract
19. Pride of Baghdad
20. Black Hole
21. The Pro
22. Scott Pilgrim
23. DC: The New Frontier
24. Transmetropolitan
25. Phonogram
26. Suburban Glamour
27. Astonishing X-Men (Whedon & Cassaday)
28. XXXombies
29. Crisis on Infinite Earths
30. 52

31. “I’m the Goddamn Batman!”

32. Batman: The Animated Series
33. The Dark Knight
34. Spider-Man 2
35. Iron Man
36. American Splendor
37. Superman: The Movie

38. Brian K. Vaughan
39. Geoff Johns
40. Grant Morrison
41. Adrian Tomine
42. Pia Guerra
43. Tony Harris
44. Ed Brubaker
45. Tim Sale
46. Terry Dodson
47. Darwyn Cooke
48. JH Williams III
49. Jack Kirby

50. Twitter (what better way to keep tabs on most comic creators these days)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

How I Spent My Summer Vacation: New York

Before going to San Diego last month, I had taken a visit to New York with my friends Joseph and Alisha. Joe and I had originally planned to go to New York sometime last summer as a graduation gift to ourselves. But due to poor planning, and just plain too much to do and take care of the first half of last year, we had to scrap plans for the big trip. So by the time 2008 rolled around, we made it imperative to start planning things to make this trip happen. Which for me that included having to sacrifice going to Coachella back in April with Alisha, Dang, and a bunch of other friends. I actually bought tickets to the event, but luckily, Keoki, who hadn’t yet bought his tickets to the festival took them off my hands.

Then after a while, and Joe and I began eyeing dates in which to go, Alisha told us she was thinking how much she’d like to see New York. Which led to Dang also to contemplate a trip out east. But in the end, Dang just wasn’t gonna be able to make it out with us. So it was Joe, Alisha, and myself.

Being the big, gigantic Oakland Athletics fans –let alone baseball fans– that Joe and I, we just had to make sure that we had to see a baseball game in Yankee Stadium. This 2008 season of course being the last season the Yanks would play before moving next door into the new Yankee Stadium. It just so happened that the A’s were playing a weekend series in New York in July. What worked out so picture fucking perfect and then some, was that the weekend after the trip to New York, was Comic-Con weekend.

To maximize our time in New York, we figured getting on a red-eye that left SFO on Wednesday night, and our connecting flight from Las Vegas to JFK would get us into New York at a little past 8am Thursday morning. In the cab ride into the city, I chuckled to myself as Alisha and Joe were either still kind of sleepy or had their attention elsewhere as we passed by an exit to Queens Boulevard. I mouthed the phrase: “I AM QUEENS BOULEVARD.” Joseph being a fan of Entourage as well, I thought he’d get a kick out of it as well, and I tried to show him the exit sign before it was too late. Hell, I got so much a kick out of it that I tweeted: “I am Queens Blvd.”

Anyhow, after checking our bags into the hotel (located in Times Square), we headed straight for the Statue of Liberty, which I gotta preface by saying that it pays to not only buy your tickets for these sightseeing stuff ahead of time, and online, but also to get the express passes. It really is so freakin damn worth it considering all the time you save, especially considering we were running from place to place at break-neck like speed –might be over-exaggerating with that, but still– we had to if we wanted to see and do everything that we wanted to see and do.

After the Statue, we had to conserve a little energy to get to Rockafeller Center for the tours we had planned for there, so we didn’t bother getting off the ferry again to see Ellis Island. Following the Statue of Liberty, the three of us headed to Rockafeller Center to take a pair of tours: the NBC Studio Tour and the Top of the Rock Tour.

The studio tour took us to the set where Brian Williams does the network’s Nightly News broadcast, which is actually only one room away from where MSNBC does their programming. We also got to see Studio 8H, which is where Saturday Night Live is taped. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to go tour through Conan O’Brien’s set. My guess was that since it was so close to the hour in which they tape the show that they were probably rehearsing. Oh well. Also, they didn’t allow for pictures to be taken on the tour. Again, oh well.

After the studio tour, we took the Top of the Rock tour, which was basically a tour of the Rockafeller Center, and concluded with being shown to the top of the Rockafeller building.

Throughout the trip, I took photos with not only with my digital camera, but with my manual camera, too. I think I took something like four rolls at 24 exposures each. Haven’t gotten them developed yet, but I will, and like the others I’ll end up uploading it onto my flickr.

We went to Papaya King afterward for a quick –and I mean quick– bite to eat, which is also to say, some pretty good hot dogs. We had just enough time to get something to eat before having to get ourselves ready to catch the Avenue Q musical just down the street from the hotel.

When Alisha picked out the musical, I scratched my head sine the title sounded so familiar. They did a run of the production at a theater in San Francisco not too long ago. Thought it was enjoyable, especially considering most of the characters’ arc fit our the themes in which the three of us could relate to.

To cap the night off, we headed down to a movie theater on 34th Ave, where we met up with this fucking guy. Dave and his friend were already in line, as they were waiting for us to catch a midnight screening of The Dark Knight. I’ll share and repeat Dave’s description of the line that night: it was retarded! That line worked its way around the freakin damn corner; it was so long.
Since the theater sold tickets to the movie in four different auditoriums, Dave and his friend had tickets to watch the movie in a different auditorium than the three of us.

But when we met up with Dave after the movie, there was no denying the fact that we were all just in so much fuckin awe of that movie. The way in which Alisha kept describing my reaction to the movie –as the credit rolled– to people: “It was as if Joey had just seen Jesus.” More on The Dark Knight soon, I promise. I’ve been meaning to write something up on the film, and a couple other issues as well.

Anyway, after the film, as Dave was escorting/walking us back to our hotel, he laid this little bit of information on us: last call at bars and clubs in New York is as late as four or five in the AM. Of course, in California, bars and clubs have a last call at around one-thirty or so. Although the three of us were dead damn tired after just the first fuckin day, we took full advantage of this information the next couple nights.

And like the San Diego recap, there’s just too much to fit into in just one single post, so I’ll leave off here, and pick things up in the next couple days.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

How I Spent My Summer Vacation: SDCC '08 Pt. 2

Check out my Flickr for photos from SDCC.

Attending San Diego Comic-Con requires an awful lot of energy, and especially more so if you go out after each day’s events inside the convention. By Friday morning of the con, my level of energy was pretty low. In fact, a little lower than I would have liked considering I had just come from spending a few days in New York. But, hey, it’s Comic-Con; you gotta suck it up for Comic-Con, right?

Although there wasn’t really any official Caballero meet-ups with the members of the former Brian K. Vaughan forum (now part of the current Tony Harris forum), I did get to hang out with a number of them here and there throughout the course of the weekend.

On preview night, I had dinner with Carrie and Stephanie and their friends, where Carrie her Ghost Whisperer-comic writing partner, Becky, and I geeked out on Indiana Jones and Star Wars.

Thursday night, I hung out with some friends from San Francisco that I hadn’t seen in quite a while, including my friend David Brothers, who was part of the comics-blogging panel at the end of the day, as well as the Japan-bound Mindy Owens. David may have complained about the lasagna having a little too much meat for him, but I think I was hungry enough, that there was probably too little for me. Anyway, twas a good meal.

Also got to hang out with Mike (Lagomorph), and Nick from the board on Friday night for dinner, before parting ways: they went to the Oni Press party, whereas I went back to the convention center for the tail end of the Eisners, before calling it quits for the night.

On Thursday I had a quick lunch with Capntightpants (David, I swear, I don’t know what it is, I just happened to know a swell of Davids) and his girlfriend. And then I also met up with them for the Joss Whedon panel on Friday. It was a packed panel, one in which I barely made it into, and right on time. Joss actually brought out his family that he worked with to create Dr. Horrible, as well as the cast of Dr. Horrible. The panel was awesome to say the least.

In fact, had I made it into the Watchmen panel, I definitely would not have made it into Whedon’s panel. To which, I was so fuckin close to getting into the Watchmen panel before being turned away because Hall H had reached capacity. And despite not making it into the panel, I had found a fellow complainer in Whitney Matheson when she told me that she didn’t get into the Watchmen panel either while we waited for the Entertainment Weekly: Filmmakers panel later in the day. Although we shared that in common, the fact that she still got to meet Zack Snyder, and I didn’t… well, one of the perks of being a member of the press.

To start things on Saturday morning, I went to the Black Panel, and there I found out about Method Man’s graphic novel, which I still gotta check out. Someone was dressed as Captain America at the panel, and I wish had gotten a photo of him, too. But I did take a picture of this person as bumblebee. Absolutely awesome! I missed out on getting into the writers of The Office panel, but I did make it into the Grant Morrison and Gerard Way panel, which was… well, do you need to know anything else other than Grant fuckin Morrison? And my favorite quote from the panel came from Gerard: "I don’t know what a Grammy means anymore, but I know what a Eisner means." Gerard and Gabriel Ba, of course having just won the Eisner for Best Limited Series the night before.

I ditched the last few hours of the con on Saturday to go to the Whitney Matheson / PopCandy meet-up at the Marriot’s roof-top Altitude bar, and for those PopCandy readers that rsvp’d for the meet-up were given Whitney’s Twitter-mini-comic. Online version found here!

I don’t leave any comments, and mostly ghost through the comments on Whitney’s blog, and didn’t rsvp for the meet-up, but being the kind and super-cool person she is, Whitney handed me the Twitter-mini-comic to me anyway.

After the meet-up, I grabbed a quick dinner by myself before crashing in my bed in my hotel. That is until I woke up around 11:30, and on the verge of stir crazy. Luckily, Lagomorph (who was still recovering from the previous night) was also getting a little stir crazy, and we met-up at Lime, and hung out for a few hours.

Sunday morning, I went to the Jack Kirby panel, and the last DC Comics panel of the weekend. It was actually the first DC panel I had gone to all weekend. It was a good one to go to since at the end of the panel, DC announced that Neil Gaiman and Andy Kubert are gonna be doing a little Batman story early next year. After that panel, I spent the final day of the con roaming around the exhibit hall. Where I got a cute little sketch of Nightwing from Art Balthazar. I still have to scan it, though.

At the airport, a few San Francisco friends had their flight delayed, including my friend Aaron Farmer. I showed him my Noir Sketchbook, and since his flight delayed, he did me this sketch of a noir Starscream. Epic.

There’s a bunch of other things I did while in San Diego that I’m sure I didn’t even get to in these recaps that I’m just remembering now, like the Ed Brubaker panel, or Geoff Johns panel, the Boom Studios Drink Up / Gay Pride Party. Like that Starscream sketch, the whole con was just absolutely epic!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

How I Spent My Summer Vacation: SDCC '08

Well, this month has been a blur. I went and visited New York for the first time a few weeks ago (which I’ll elaborate more on in a later post), and had just gotten back from San Diego for Comic-Con. In general, the San Diego convention really does seem to get bigger with each and every passing year. Says the guy who has now attended SDCC a grand total of two times.

Preview night seemed to have gotten bigger from what I remember. I wish I had gotten to swanky booth# 2207; otherwise known as Darwyn Cooke, Cameron Stewart, and David Bullock’s booth, as they had a few giveaways, including some postcards and such to promote Darwyn’s new work at IDW, and David was giving away limited prints of the first issue cover of the Sentry mini series that he’ll be doing covers for at Marvel. In fact, I didn’t even get a chance to say hey to David all weekend until the last hour or so of the convention on Sunday, the whole weekend was just that crazy. However, I was able to get to write in one of the three notebooks that were available to everyone to write their thoughts and feelings to and about Michael Turner. As most of you that are reading this may or may not already know, one of my best friends, Justin, had suffered from Osteosarcoma, and I actually shared this bit of information with someone from the Aspen booth when he approached me while me and some other folks were writing in the notebooks. It wasn’t til near the end of our little conversation that I realized that I was talking to Vince Hernandez, Aspen’s editor in chief. I thought putting those notebooks out for everyone to write in was a lovely idea, and as the rest of the con played out the rest of the weekend, I smiled each time I passed by the Aspen booth and saw more people writing in the notebooks.

Also, I got to bug and pester Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie for the better part of the weekend at their section of the Image booth. To which, I got Phonogram and Suburban Glamour t-shirts they had for sale, a postcard each promoting Kieron’s Busted Wonder web-comic, and the upcoming second series of Phonogram, as well as getting Jamie to add to the noir sketchbook on Saturday.

But before Jamie did his Astrid sketch, I got a noir sketch from Amanda Connor of The Pro. Although getting a sketch from her took a longer considering the amount of people she had to get through before even getting to mine. But it came out great. Then after Jamie’s sketch, I handed the sketchbook to fellow Caballero, Stephanie, also of Conjoined Comics. She sketched me Emogician, a creation of her and other Caballero, Carrie’s mini-comic creation.

Then on the con’s last day, I got a quick sketch of Ampersand by Pia Guerra while at the DC booth. Of course, I just had to congratulate her on the pair of Eisners she won two days earlier. One for winning Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller and Inker team with Jose Marzan Jr., as well as for Y: The Last Man winning Best Continuing Series. Unfortunately, I didn’t make it to the beginning of the Eisners, and didn’t see those two categories announced, but Pia did tell me she had a good time celebrating the win after the ceremony, and that although she and Brian (or BKV to some of you) hadn’t yet actually talked to each other about the win, they played phone tag with each other’s voicemail.

Well, I think that’s where I’ll leave things for now, because as I said earlier, this convention was just too big to try to worm my recap of it only into a single post. Come back tomorrow, and I’ll have more good times to share, which of course, will include photos, too.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Currently (w/May and June's Pictures of the Month)

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: I don’t think I will ever be ceased to be amazed by is the concept of time, especially with how fast time passes once you’re an adult. However, there are instances when life slows down to a snail’s pace.

And if you follow me on twitter, then you’d probably know that for the last week or two, I have been a wreck. My maternal grandmother passed away on June 20th, and this has been really hard on my family and I. However, the cloak of auto pilot status is slowly but surely wearing off.

One of my aunts set up this online obituary and guest book at legacy dot com. I just wrote my guest book entry today, and posted it there. So please, give it a look–see. It usually takes a while for their moderators to, well, moderate the content. So if you go there now, and see that it's not quite posted there yet, give it an hour or so. In about a month or so, I'll probably archive it here on the 'ol blog.

The general rule for my pictures of the month thing is that the pictures chosen for each month’s distinction have to be taken within that given month. But since I’ve been horrible with keeping on schedule with this whole thing, I’ll bend the rules that much more for May and June’s pictures of the month.

May's picture. I forgot what age and what year. I'll look it up soon to see for sure, but I'm pretty sure this was during Christmas one year.

June's picture. February of last year. Nanai with my brother's (current) youngest, Ava. Pat and Bella are expecting another on August 13th. Which just happens to be my birthday, too.

Also, another thing I don’t think I’ll never be ceased to be amazed by are people themselves. To reiterate this post, people are the most fascinating creatures on the planet.

The love and support I’ve gotten from family and friends the last couple weeks have all been appreciated to no end. I’ve expressed that all before, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to do so again.

Today’s the first day of July, which means my trips to New York and San Diego are just around the corner, and I can’t wait.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Life is Crazy

Can’t believe how infrequently I’ve updated this thing this year. Well, actually that’s because I’m just not on the grid as much as I’d like to, but go figure.

The year is practically halfway done. It’s crazy how fast time moves when you’re an adult. Maybe it’s just something that I think about a little too much, but I just don’t think I’ll stop being surprised by the quickness of time. Oh well.

In another news, I just can’t wait for these New York and San Diego trips next month. I still gotta plan what exactly me, Joseph, and Alisha, and hopefully Dang (provided he’s able to make the trip) are gonna be doing during our trip to New York. I mean there are some people that I wanna meet-up with, but our days are yet to get actually detailed.

So far, Joe, Alisha, and I are going to see Ave. Q, on the 17th, and Joe and I are gonna meet up with Dave and head over to the Bronx to see the A’s and the Yankees play on the 18th. But that’s about it so far. Other than of course the fact that I’ve vowed to be inebriated for at least no less than 50% of our trip. And no, I’m not even sure if I’m joking whenever I've express that.

Then after New York, it’s a pit-stop back to San Jose before getting back on a plane to San Diego for Comic-Con. I’ve only gone to SDCC once back in ’05, and spread myself too thin during the day, that there was little to no energy for the evening. I had gone to conventions before then, but yet had no idea how much bigger a scale SDCC operates. The conventions that I’ve attended since (and by the by, the only other cons I’ve been to have been WonderCon and Super-Con), I’ve learned to pace myself better, and maximize the fun at the particular panel, presentation, or time on the exhibitor floor that I choose to spend my time at. At cons, there’s always one or two somethings that you’re gonna miss out on. It sucks, but we can’t all vibrate through walls and can’t get from Point A to Point B as quickly as The Flash.

Also, I just found out this afternoon that Tim Russert had passed away earlier today. Tim's passing reminds me of when Peter Jennings passed away three years ago, and like Peter, Tim was a great journalist. And it is indeed a sad day for journalism. Rest peacefully, Tim.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

March and April Pictures of the Month

Yeah, I'm late with posting these two up. Really late.

I got the Hal Jordan mini action figure from the dvd package from Besy Buy and the flyer there is from the Justice League: New Frontier afterparty hosted by Isotope and iFanboy.

This is from an Oakland A's-Kansas City Royals game at McAfee Coliseum from April 18th. The team had a promo of half off the price for the Luxury Suites for the month of April. If you can't tell, my chucks are pretty wrecked by now, and I'm in need of a new pair.

This weekend I spent most of my time at Super-Con. I'll be sure to do a wrap-up in a day or two. It's just that right now, I'm pretty damn tired. But just know that I got two great sketches: one from Darrick Robertson of Spider Jerusalem and another from David Bullock of Raven. The Noir Sketchbook is a growin!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Barack Obama in 30 Seconds

In this world, any and everything is possible. So is it so wrong to hope? Is it so wrong to aspire, and want something more out of ourselves? There is always the possibility of failure, but without hope, how can anyone expect to succeed?

Change can only become a reality if one recognizes it as a necessity. To implement change, it requires support. The more support given, the better the chance for change.

There’re much more smarter people in this world than I to discuss to politics with. But be that as it may, I like to keep positive in all the things that I say, do, and all the things that I am as a person. Is it so wrong to believe in Barack Obama and how much good that his presidency could mean for America?

There are a number of reasons why I wanted to submit an entry into this Obama in 30 Seconds contest. I collaborated on this project with my friend Jason, and for me, some rewards have already born fruit.

Also, Jason and I will be the first to admit that the quality of the video is a little, um, not great. With so many problems we had with scheduling the shoot, editing, and so on, I’m grateful we actually finished. Hopefully, you guys like it.

Voting just started today, and when you go to watch the videos, you’re given random batches of videos, so no ballot stuffing through those means. Another way to get into the second round is have your video have one of the top five most “unique views” (the contest organizers’ words, not mine). So the more you spread the video around, the better the chance mine and Jason’s video can make it in the contest.

Until today, I’ve been off the grid for a couple days, and I’ve already seen a few videos, some of which pretty good.

Watch mine and Jason's video, here:

Vote for it here:

And take a look at the rest of the field here:

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Youth is 100% Baseball

Well, yesterday I went to an Oakland Athletics' home opener for the fifth straight year. The A's lost, but they've lost 4 of the 5 times I've gone to these five straight home openers. So no real biggie.

Although, I must admit the A's already had their home opener back in Japan last week. But I won't tell anyone if you won't. Going to opening day is a bit of a tradition for me. To make things short, I've gone to opening day to sort of honor a couple friends that passed away in 2004. Here's a little more background on that. They were friends that loved and enjoyed baseball so much.

I know that at best, the A's have an outside shot of winning the AL West, but I have a feeling they will have surprised people by the end of the season. I also realize the season just started, and everyone has a good feeling about the new season, but I -honest to goodness- really do have a good feeling about the A's 2008 campaign. Maybe not win the AL West, but I believe they can and will turn some heads. After all, this is the Green and Gold we're talking about.

This is what transpired right as the A's DH Jack Cust came up to the plate from the on-deck circle in the second inning:

My friend Mark jokingly shouts: "Cust, you're forgiven for takin roids." (referring to the Mitchell Report)

Me: "As long as you hit a home run."

Cust hit a home run on the first pitch. We laughed our asses off as soon as that happened. And then I noticed on the big screen along side the replay, that everyone in our section, #224, gets a free personal pan pizza because of the home run. But when the vouchers were handed to our rows a couple innings later, we only got two vouchers (there were four of us). But like I said earlier about the A's not winning the game, this was also a no biggie.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


And boy, do I have plenty of it. My room is an absolute mess right now. I'm in the process of making my room about the most awesome room ever. But like I said, it's pretty damn messy to begin with. Add to it this Obama in 30 Seconds thing that my friend Jason and I are currently trying to work on. Finding a way to cram my idea into something less than half a minute long, worrying about audio, scheduling, actors, and having a camera we can work with has been pretty stressful. I first heard about this a little over a week ago, and although an idea came pretty quick, the timing for producing and executing this idea has been a bit difficult. Deadline for submissions is April 1st.

Even if this project is destined to go down in flames, I'm hoping at least it'll have a couple seconds of life before the smoke starts.

Monday, March 17, 2008

February's Picture of the Month

It's well after half past March, and I find it quite ridiculous that I haven't made this particular blog post until now. Moreover, the fact that until now, I've only had one entry in this blog this whole month. Anyway, I don't think I made it all that clear in January's post that I wanted to take photos specifically meant to be chosen as POTMs, and not necessarily choose photos taken randomly at parties, or elsewhere.

Well, anyway here's February's Picture of the Month:

As I first started thinking about doing these pictures of the month, I thought I'd be snapping pictures a plenty this year, and I would have a wealth of photos to choose from. But that just hasn't really happened. I mean, I didn't reallying take that many photos in February. I only took eighteen (decently shot) photos in the three and a half days at WonderCon. Getting back to the photo, it's another one that's also set in my own room. Hopefully, for March's photo I'll have enough self-awareness to take a photo outside my room. At the very least, I should get my camera out into the hallway.

It is also pretty crazy how many comics and books I've amassed in the five and a half years I've been reading and collecting comic books. I still have books on the floor and comics all over the place. But that part is mostly because I'm a messy, unorganized schmo.

EDIT: Also just wanted to point out that today is my brother, Patrick's birthday! So Happy Birthday, Pat!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Peter Jennings: A Reporter's Life

Almost three years ago was when Peter Jennings died, and ABC aired Peter Jennings: Reporter just a few days following Jennings’ death. I wasn’t able to see it as it aired, so I recorded it on my TiVo. When I had the time to try to watch the program sometime afterwards I had to turn the television off because I was crying so much, I couldn’t watch any further. So up until late last fall–early winter, that program stayed on my TiVo’s “Now Playing List.” That is until I goofed and the program was erased to record something else. I don’t even remember exactly what other program it was being recorded. The Peter Jennings special that had remained in my TiVo box was no more, and I hadn’t ever actually watched it.

It was also around that time that I kept seeing a book on Jennings, Peter Jennings: A Reporter’s Life, in bookstores. It seemed like something I was interested in getting, and told some family members, and even made the book a part of my Christmas List.

Sure enough, my sister and her husband got the book for me for Christmas. It took a while to finally find the time to start reading it, but I finally finished it almost three weeks ago.

I thought if I couldn’t get through watching the television program, maybe I could at least get through reading the book. I was kind of right. I had tears rolling down my face as I read through some parts of the end of the book.

In the book, his family, friends, and colleagues recount Jennings’ life and career as a reporter. The reflections made were either taken from transcripts from the ABC special or from Jennings’ memorial service.

What I have always like about Jennings was that his voice commanded your attention. But it was also one in which you didn’t feel threatened by or obligated to do anything, except listen. Of the three: Jennings, Tom Brokaw, and Dan Rather, I’d say that my father probably watched Jennings the most. And by de facto, me as well, However, that is all I can remember from my younger days. I can’t think of a more lasting memory of ever watching a broadcast by Jennings. I mean I vaguely can recall watching Jennings’ millennium broadcast, but all I can remember about that broadcast was him “throwing it out” to a Neil Diamond performance somewhere in Colorado. I know the man spent and ungodly amount of time in front of the camera at the anchor desk not only for the millennium broadcast, but also for 9/11 too. But after coming home from school that afternoon on 9/11, I vaguely remember watching anything on the television. Yet, that’s mostly because I honestly could not keep watching the same damn thing over and over again on the news.

While reading this book, I kind of re-realized why I have such an affinity for journalism, and why I had such a respect for Jennings himself. Among other things, that manner of respect he commanded and gave, the curiosity, the doggedness to pursue the truth about a subject, to talk to people from across the world, and giving them their chance to tell their stories.

I have an ambition to be a writer of fiction, in numerous mediums, but I think if the ball had bounced in a number of different ways, I could just as easily decided to become a journalist. I say that as I’ve reached senior citizen status. Hell, I’m only 23, and yes, I realize I can just as easily switch gears, and still do the journalism thing. But I’ll stick with writing stuff of fiction.

Peter Jennings: A Reporter’s Life is a book about a newsman that was unlike any other. The book delves into Jennings’ home in Canada, his first go-round as anchor for ABC at age 26, his seasoning as a foreign correspondent for ABC, World News Tonight, everything in between, and so on.

Here’s an excerpt from Bill Blakemore, who was teaching in Beirut before Jennings recruited him as his soundman:

He always made the point: “Don’t stand like you’re in front of a stage set. Touch the surroundings where you are. Bring it alive so that this two-dimensional medium we work in is one in which people can imagine being there and touching it.” So he did one on-camera from the back of an elephant. Another one about overpopulation – he just gathered some Indian street kids around him. He told the cameraman, “Start rolling.” The kids were snapping their fingers. Peter turned to the camera and said, while snapping his fingers, “This is a game, but it’s telling us something: every time you click your fingers, another child is born in India.”

Monday, February 25, 2008

WonderCon 2008

So WonderCon has come and gone once again, and once again, I got to hang out and talk with a few Caballeros/Castaways. Last year, it was Triggerman that I hung out with most. Unfortunately, he's back home on the other side of the Atlantic. The same with Nick I.. And of course, Old Man Harris. But not all was lost. This year I got to hang out with fellow Castaway, Kedd. Also another change was the fact that I don't live in San Fran anymore, so my buddy James and his roommates put me up for the weekend.

Anyway, now for some of my Personal Highlights

-Meeting Darwyn Cooke on Thursday night at the Isotope and finding out -among other things- that Cooke and I are both Clash fans, and that his New Frontier character design of Captain Cold is based off Grant Morrison.

-Getting Darwyn Cooke to John Hancock my Absolute New Frontier, as well add a sweet image of the Spirit to the noir sketch book.

-Having a blast at the Get Smart panel.

-Visited Carrie and Stephanie's table, and picked up some of their awesome work.

-"My father doesn't love me."

-Finding out the main reason why Kedd's is able to maintain such a high post count.

-Being present at the DC panel that Kedd made Didio momentarily speechless as well as the moment Bagley called Kedd a trouble maker.

-Watching DC's New Frontier

-The Iron Man movie panel.

-Getting a helluva lot of new reading material throughout the weekend.

-Conversing with Mikie from the 'ol BKV Board. (He has yet to register onto Harris' new board.) Talked some really good stuff with him at both shin digs first at the Isotope on Friday, and then especially good stuff on Saturday.

-On Saturday, I went to Trad'r Sam for the first time since May of last year. This time with James (guy w/darkened Raiders cap) and crew. For Arvin (far left), it was his first time ever at Trad'r Sam, and he didn't listen to our warnings of just how strong Trad'r Sam drinks are. Yeah, he got messed up. But I on the other hand, am happy to report that I actually did a good job of getting a real good buzz, and yet, not getting defeated by the dreaded Scorpion Bowl.

-Getting a couple Tiny Titans posters from the DC Booth. Some of them are for my nieces and nephews, I swear.

-Here's a quote from James Sime's Twitter that best describes the mass of people from Saturday night.

-Seeing so many Castaways (unfortunately except for Capntightpants and Christopher)

-And getting Mark Bagley to add an utterly bad ass noir Batman to the sketchbook.

Good times. Good times. Good times. I usually take a lot of pictures when out on the town, but for some reason, not all that much in the span of four days... Probably because I "feel" more photogenic, and camera trigger happy when I have more than just a good buzz. Oh well.

Here be the rest of the weekend's photos.

EDIT on Weds. Feb 27: Forgot to add the highlight of chit-chatting it up with Brian Wood, and getting him to sign my first two issues of DEMO, and vol. 1 of DMZ. Awesome guy.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Castaways formerly known as Caballeros

So last week, when Brian Vaughan hinted that we Caballeros should get our Cabal related affairs order, I wanted to post an entry say just how deflated I felt about it. Moreover, that the reason I felt so heart struck was because the people that inhabited the board are just damn good people; some of which I have had the pleasure to meet and hang out in real life. And in the years that Brian has had the board up, our little community of Caballeros have become extremely tight-knit.

Case in point: Most of us Caballeros registered on Tony Harris' original Jolly Roger message board via ezboard, as well as on the Caballeroslove freeforum that NothingFace and Michael Heide (high fives go out to them).

I had a film professor that described that what made Jean Renoir and his films so great was that in each and everyone of his films included practically every aspect in life: love, family, war, death, youth, everything. And not only am I inclined to agree completely with that, but also I believe that to be one of the reasons why the Cabal was such a fun destination to hit each day I got on the internet. We had threads on comics (obviously), movies, politics, sex, and the birth of nnnnn, and a helluva lot more of course.

Last year at WonderCon, Brian signed my copy of Pride of Baghdad:

Joey JP-
Long live the Caballeros.
Brian K. Vaughan

While we are to still be Caballeros at heart, alas, we are now Castaways (at least I think that's the name that has been settled on). I guess it's kinda like when Zach de la Rocha left Rage Against the Machine, and Tom Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk joined up with Chris Cornell and formed Audioslave.

Awesome new digs, right? (It's been said many times, but it's worth saying again: Mucho props to Tony Harris, Michael Heide, and NothingFace)

Friday, February 8, 2008

Peope are Fascinating

By far and away, what fascinates me most in this world are people. We are all different in our personalities, our wants, our dislikes, our geography, education, religious affiliations, ethnicity, history, everything. The people that I've met in my life so far are inspiration for what I'm trying to do with my life, which is write.

Last month, there was a week in which I encountered three situations that interested me to no end. I can't exactly remember in what order these instances happened, but the first instance to mention was when I was waiting outside the restroom in the food court in a mall here in San Jose. The janitor was already in the process of cleaning up the men's room, and a couple other guys came by after me looking to use the bathroom as well. One of them some teenager. First thing I noticed was his uniform; he worked at the mall's theater above the food court. Then he asks me if "this the line?"

I look at his face, and his left eye is absolutely red. As if he popped a blood vessel within the last day or so. I was taken aback, but I quickly answered that it was, or is, in that instant. Then he walked back into the hallway meant only for mall employees, and came back a minute or two later. As he walked by me, he whispered, "Have fun waiting in line."

I wanted to slap that kid upside the fuckin head.

Then I wondered if he was acting dickish because that's who he is, or if it was because he noticed my surprise when first I saw his eye. Either way, I hope his eye specialist/doctor overcharged him for treatment.

Another instant was when I was an a comic shop, and overheard a couple looking for two issues of a particular Star Wars comic series for their son or nephew.

"Two-ninety-nine?" He said to the girl. "That's cheap!"

I smiled, and tried so hard to keep from rolling on the ground, and laughing out loud.

Then that leaves a time when I was an another comic shop, also in San Jose, and the employee at the shop was talking to a friend of his, and not a minute after I walk in, the friend blurts out the fate of a character in There Will Be Blood. And I assumed the character they were talking about was "character x." I hadn't seen the film yet, and I wanted to wring out both of their necks. Fast forward to today. I finally got to see the film.

I walked into the theater anticipating the fate of "character x." Low and behold, "character x" was not who the employee and the friend were talking about, but another character. Even though everything turned out okay, there's still a little part of me that feels the same way that I felt that day in the comic shop: there are people in this world that just don't have any common courtesy or sense of urgency. The two people in the shop that day likely have more courtesy than most, but damn if I didn't wanna call the two of them a pair of asses when I left.

All in all, people are fascinating.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

January's Picture of the Month

I've decided to do something similar to what some have done, including Alisha, which is to taking a photo a day, or week, or whatever. But the hell if I'm gonna remember to take a photo a day for 366 days this year (it's a leap year this year remember). Well if any of you out there know me, you know that I take a lot of photos. Case in point, my previous entry. And I doubt I'm actually ever gonna get to all of the Hella Photos I originally wanted to post here, so like I kind of mentioned in that entry, you may as well check out my Flickr.

Anyway, in all the photos that I take throughout the given month, I'll end up picking the one photo that stands out to me, and declare it the photo of the month. That said, here's January's photo of the month, Paulie Bleeker:

If you've seen Juno then you should instantly get the title's meaning. Late last month, as I was getting ready for bed, I took off my Livestrong and Don't Sweat The Small Stuff wrist bands onto my desk, and it landed on near the little basketball. And me being me, I didn't wanna go to bed right away, and started fiddling with it, and eventually got what you see above. Ridiculousness, I realize. But in the background you'll see my Frank Sinatra box set, Grant Morrision beer glass from the Isotope, The Office day calender, the box of my Dan Johnson- Sacramento RiverCats bobble head doll (the actual bobble-head doll behind the Morrision glass, and behind the box is my 10-inch Ray Palmer-The Atom... all of these "toys" reaffirming the fact that I am one huge dork.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Y: The Last Man

Alas, the end has come.

I went to my LCS today, and picked up Y#60. I just finished reading it, and I'm still digesting the series' last issue. I have a full slate of things to do today, and I read it so quick, I'm gonna have to reread it to really grasp it's finality. But a box tissues may be needed for a few choice scenes, if not the entire issue.

To Brian, Pia, and so many of the other people who contributed to creating such a beautifully executed story from beginning to end, thank you. I thank you for taking us all on such an amazing ride, and congratulate you for an exquisite job well done.

It is bittersweet that even though there is a definite ending to the story, that's just it, but it ends. However, the thing with kick ass roller coasters, is the ability to ride it once again. I'll be sure to do just that.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Hella Photos part 1

So for various reasons I just don't upload photos in a timely manner. Yet, at the very least, I get to make entries such as this: a photo parade. So alas, let's get things started.

These photos are from all the way back in July of last year when I saw Incubus play the Greek Theater in Berkeley. (See. See what I mean about uploading photos in a not so timely manner) With the photo on the right, I guess I tried getting a shot of the crowd behind me. Kind of like "diamonds strewn across a blue blanket," you might say. Okay, maybe not, but you get my point when I say "Wish You Were Here."

My pillow, err.. my niece Lexy while at dinner for my mom's birthday last October.

My mom is the one holding the flowers, while my niece T.T. is doing her funky walk. Not that she has a funky walk. It's just that in this photo she's walking a bit funky. She's not much for taking photos -embarrassed she is- but then again she's almost 14, so go figure.

My other niece Ava (Yeah, I got a lot of nieces and nephews) doing some shopping down there. And then we have my mortal enemy. Or at least the enemy that I had made that night. I wasted at least five bucks trying to get a bite from 'ol claw machine, and ended up coming away empty handed. I just thought this last one is pretty cool. That I and think I need new chucks, or well, new shoes in general. The UGGs on the right belong to Tris. As the title on this entry suggests, I gots plenty of photos left to share, and I'll get to all that soon. Of course, if you can't wait that long, then by all means do the cheat sheet thing, and check out my Flickr page.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Too Early.

Heath Ledger is dead. My jaw dropped the moment I heard the news on the radio this afternoon on my way to pick up my niece and nephew from school. It's just sad. Plain and simple. Sobering news indeed. But what hits home most of all is the fact that the man was only 28 years old. As with anyone who passes away young, those that are left in mourning beg the question: What could have been?

And it sucks to find ourselves asking that question regarding Heath because the answer is quite simple: The future was bright. Very bright.

May you find peace, Heath.