Sunday, August 28, 2011

Duck Alarm Clock And... ESP(Maybe)?

ALTERNATIVELY, THIS POST COULD BE TITLED 'FOR ONCE, A TOTALLY USEFUL SYNCHRONISTIC EVENT'


In 2008 I bought the South Korean movie 'Project Makeover' (Unni-ga Ganda/언니가 간다) on DVD. It's a time travel comedy about a woman who gets a chance to go back and warn her younger self about a crucial, life-changing event, hoping thereby to improve her own present life.

Usually, time travel humor involves someone from the past being a fish out of water in the present and constantly amazed by modern developments -- but in this case, the opposite happens: once back in the Korea of her high-school days, the protagonist is constantly amused (with a wink to the audience) by the ubiquity of what to her are nearly-forgotten relicts, but to the people around her are the latest and trendiest innovations, such as pagers, dial-up modems and 'ancestral' *K-pop^^.


I liked the two lead actresses, Ko SoYoung and Jo An, who played older and younger versions, respectively, of the same woman; as well as the cute concept and the colorful, storybook-like visuals that fit the fantasy premise nicely. I even loved the theme song. I was surprised, therefore, to find out that the movie did not do so well in Korea. Oh well.

Anyway, at the beginning of the movie the heroine is awakened by the sound of a duck alarm clock going "Quack-quack".


It was so funny and cute I wanted one immediately, but since the movie was shot in South Korea I figured it was probably a local item, most likely not available here in Los Angeles.

Flash forward a year or so and my cousin Ben was about to graduate with a degree in pharmacology, so Mom and I needed to shop for a graduation present for the kid. We didn't know where to start because we hadn't decided what to get him, but while trying to decide that I suddenly had a 'feeling' involving the duck alarm clock and Kim's Home Center (김스 전기), a well-known store in Koreatown (founded by an old family acquaintance, BTW). I therefore suggested we go and browse there, and Mom agreed that was as good a place to begin as any. I didn't tell her my real reason, though.

So we walk into Kim's Home Center, and what do I see the first thing? -- a duck alarm clock, just like the one in the movie except the bow tie (which doubles as the alarm button) was a different color, on a shelf behind the downstairs counter. I asked for one, and I was told there weren't any -- the one on display was the only one in the store. So of course I asked them to sell it to me, which they did.

Coincidence? Possibly.



*K-pop: Korean pop music (including the dances that go with particular songs); part of South Korean popular entertainment in general, which is increasingly popular outside of Korea these days.

2 Triangles: One Pointing Down, One Pointing Up

THE SEARCH FOR RANDOM ORDER NEVER CEASES (AND ONE TRIANGLE IS IMPLIED)


The title of this post sounds like:

#1. Something from the early days of Abstract Expressionism -- Russian Suprematism, in particular (as exemplified by 'Black Square and Red Square' by Malevich)

#2. Something out of a Monty Python sketch (a la 'The Society for Putting Things on Top of Other Things')

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Drunk

ME, I GET ALL HAPPY AND SILLY


Some people are known to get all depressed and weepy when they drink.

Then there are those who become angry and aggressive.

Yes, sometimes I drink more than is good for me -- like last night.

Still, I believe a little drinking really can do you good -- and not just physically.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

An Intriguing Dream

INCIPIENT LUCIDITY -- I SOLVE A PROBLEM IN A DREAM - CONSCIOUSLY

[This is a new dream I just had this morning. The following is a modified version of the entry I just added to my Dream Log]

I kept drifting in and out of sleep all night. At one point I dreamt that I was going to a house to meet this woman for some sort of (art-related?)business deal. I arrived before she did and parked my car by the curb on the same side as the house.


After the meeting, we said goodbye, she drove away, and I looked for my car – only to find it was gone. I scouted up and down the block, on both sides of the street, to no avail.

While worrying about it I began to rise out of sleep and became partly conscious. That's when a solution occurred to me:  I should go back into the dream and dream that I found my car!


It worked like a -- well, a dream.  I managed to go right back into the dream and continue with the new scenario -- but curiously enough (maybe not so curious, considering this was a dream), in a somewhat garbled form; I found myself in my car, responding to my call to bring the car back!


Then there was a small flash-forward; the crisis had been resolved and I was back inside the house, telling someone in the living room about the unusual thing I had just managed to pull off.


Edit: Why didn't I just find my car, instead of driving it back to where 'I' was waiting? Maybe this is my way of telling myself that only I can make things happen for me(?) -- that, instead of just thinking exciting thoughts and living inside my head, I should get cracking and try to do them in real life...

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Dawn Moon


Shoot The Moon


Another Twisty ConTrail

A WHIMSICAL PRODIGY


This one is even more unusual than usual(hah) -- I know it can't possibly be true, but this one not only has three half-twists in it, but it looks as if it's been folded flat (say by an origami-loving Cloud Monster). Below is a model I made to illustrate the point more clearly.


Why would a condensation trail left by an airplane look like this? I really, really would like to take a helicopter and go up there for a close look.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Koi


Today I had lunch with Mom at our favorite Chinese place. There was a young couple seated at the table next to us, and I noticed the head of a fish peeking out over the back of the girl's top. It so happens I'm a fan of the colorful Asiatic ornamental carp, best known here in the U.S. by their Japanese name koi. I asked for permission to photograph the tattoo and got it.

Which reminded me of this.


On that previously-referenced trip to Jeju-do, South Korea, I happened across a beautiful koi pond in a park. Such extravagantly glamorous fish -- It's as if they were born wearing embroidered silk robes. And I'd say the tattoo artist did a fine job of capturing their sinuous beauty.


There are koi on the noren curtains in my loft, as well. Wonder if they taste as good as they look? Just kidding.

Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Goat

AND AS THE OLD GOAT HE MAY SOME DAY BE, HOPEFULLY



Another Random Set


DRAGONFLIES



A KOSHER TREE



A MAN HIDING

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Crane Project Update #1 (New Style)


I don't know how many are shown here; probably not that many. Anyway, from now on I'll just keep adding more panels to this picture instead of showing individual updates. I think it'll be more fun that way.

Up until a few minutes ago I was sure the best alternative method of displaying these birdies was to buy a glass bowl from an aquarium shop and cram them all in it. I thought it would be an elegant and impressive way to show them off.

However, as I started to write this post it occurred to me that might not be the best way -- over time the combined weight of the upper ones might crush the ones at the bottom, for example; and in any case the majority will not be visible, being inside the mass of birds.

Now I'm thinking of compromising with the traditional method of stringing them up; I could hang them from the ceiling -- individually. Now THAT would be an impressive way to display them, but it will be an insanely tedious job to hang them all. I'll have to think about it.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Amazing Tree

TREE FIRES A SHOT



I don't know how or why a tree does this, or just WHAT it is that's being launched/shot away (signal to other trees? weapon against cloud monsters? tree version of a toy pop gun?), but it HAS to be related to this phenomenon.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Afternoon Meeting


There are more and more meetings at the office these days, at ever more frequent intervals. Usually they take place in the morning, but this one was in the early-mid afternoon, not long after lunch.

I could have used a pair of those 'alert eyes' gag eyeglasses:


They really should make a clip-on version for people who already wear glasses.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Again, Some Old Art

MERMAIDS, TOO, DIE


I did this one a long, long time ago. It reflects a continuing fascination with mermaids since childhood, crossed with a grownup melancholy. I wish I hadn't sold it -- I think this and 'The Flying Fish' are the most personally meaningful and best-executed pieces I've ever done -- with the possible exception of 'Avidya' (here and here, among others); but at least I know who has this one.

And thank you, Daryl Hannah.

A Random Pairing

A HEART/ A FIG




Entropic Moon


Random Shot: "Land!"


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Origami Paper

WHERE CRANES/STORKS COME FROM


Happy Evil Face

I MAY BE DESTINED TO BE REBORN AS A SNAKE, BUT MY ENEMIES ARE GOING TO BE REBORN AS FAT SLOW MICE


Here's to hoping this is the expression I'll be wearing on my deathbed.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Giving Blood

TO THE RED CROSS
(AND ALMOST TO JACK NICHOLSON, VAMPIRE)

This past Friday I went to donate blood at the Red Cross at the Veterans Hospital in Westwood. Just as the tech was getting ready to insert the needle, it occurred to me I should take a few shots of the procedure. Come to think, it's odd that I never thought of doing it before -- me, the compulsive photo-diarist -- even though I'd donated blood several times since I started the blog; but anyway here are the pictures. For some reason the old lady in the chair across from me thought what I was doing was hilarious and kept chuckling.


Prepping the site with iodine



The nice phlebotomist lady with the smile on her gown



The part I still hate



I pretend to squeeze the rubber ball for appearance's sake, but what I really do is replay in my head some of the exciting swordfight scenes from the yet-to-be-made movie of my life; that always gets the blood pumping way faster. Just kidding.



Bag o' blood, warm and delicious (BTW, I love this picture -- a full bag of ominously dark blood, flanked by a limp hand clutching a red ball on the one side and a hemostat pinching a pristine white lab gown on the other -- I'm not sure what it means, but it sure is evocative)



A good friend of mine -- let's call her, say, Muffy -- is a fan of vampires. A long time ago, she made me promise that if ever I was bitten by a vampire and turned into one myself, she would be the very first person I would turn in my turn (hah, "turn in my turn").

Some time after that, I dreamt that Jack Nicholson was a vampire and that he was dating my mother. He was also a bad guy (I mean in the sense of being a lowlife thug in addition to being a bloodsucking demon); so I told him I was not happy to have a guy like him hanging around my mom, and boy, he did not like hearing that from some skinny-ass punk kid. Which had me scared that he might come after me and suck my blood. But then, I remembered that I'd promised Ev.., I mean Muffy, that I would turn her into a vampire, and thought maybe I should let him.

What a great friend I am, remembering promises even in dreams.