Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Force Was Strong This Halloween

The pumpkins Fred and Julian carved. Julian picked out the pumpkins and designed the faces while Fred did most of the cutting. Check out the little one on the right.

So, as we have in previous years, we did a family costume.

Originally, only Julian was going to dress up this year. Years ago, Lucas* gave us the awesome Darth Vader helmet with the attached chest piece (which with a touch of a button plays the breathing sounds and lines like, "Don't make me destroy you" and "You don't know the power of the Dark Side"). So, given Julian's recent interest in Star Wars, we encouraged him to embrace his inner super villain. He was into it, especially when he realized he would get a light saber. Then Joel pointed out that it made no sense for Fred and I not to dress up as Luke and Leia as we both have the hair for it. The costumes were fairly easy to put together when all was said and done and we looked really awesome.

Many pictures of Julian engaged in light saber duels have been taken, but unfortunately, none of them were with our camera, so I have to wait for people to mail those to us.

We got a ton of compliments on the integrated family costume. On some level, Fred and I were probably acting out our own childhood fantasies (well, I was. It actually took a bit for Fred to accept he couldn't dress as Han Solo). Also, these were super comfortable (Julian is in sweats, Fred and I are in slippers). Yes, it is true, we had another costume with headgear so cumbersome that Julian did most of his trick or treating while his parents carried the crucial identifier.

My only complaint is the headphone hair is, perhaps, the single most unflattering hairstyle ever. Look what it did to Carrie Fisher when she was a mere 19 years old! Honestly, it could drive a girl to drink.

*Julian's cousin Lucas, not to be confused with George Lucas.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I thought about including this video in the previous post about cat calls, but then I figured this song deserved a post all its own.

I remember the first time I heard this song. It was a Thursday night (I know this because it was played on WXRT on "New Release Thursday), it was spring and I was driving home from ballet class. My first response was surprise that this was Lush, a band I had considered a Cocteau Twins inspired, shoe-gazer 4AD band (which, coming from me, is a compliment). My second response was that I had to pull the car over so I could give the song my full attention because it was JUST THAT GOOD. I love the guitar riffs. I love the speed. And I absolutely love the message. I remember I kept hoping WXRT would play it again and the one time afterwards when I heard it, I was once again in a car, this time with people, and I recall going on about what an amazing song it was and how disinterested they were in what I was saying, seemingly more impressed that I could recall the lyrics of a song that I claimed to only have heard once before. Yeah, it just happens to be that good a song. I find myself quoting this song in my head quite a bit ("save your breath for someone else and credit me with something more").

I really wish this song had existed when I was in college, it would have made my interactions with members of the opposite sex so much more interesting. And by interesting, I mean funnier. If there is any justice, this song is in the pool room jukebox. I mean, assuming that there is still a pool room, which I doubt since it isn't coming up in any google search (though it is nice to see someone went to the trouble to set up a MySpace page for the jukebox).

Also, it is a really good song to run to which, lately, seems to be my primary criteria for choosing music.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

What You Looking At?

Years ago, back before Hollaback, a friend of mine was walking down the street and was being followed by a bunch of young boys who were catcalling her. She went into a corner store and the proprietor told her the boys were "good kids, from the neighborhood." Armed with this knowledge, she went back outside and confronted them, asking them if they had mothers and sisters and how they would feel if people talked to them the way the boys had been talking to her. All the boys turned sheepish and apologized to her, promising they wouldn't do it again. It would be nice to think that guys everywhere watch the above video Stop Looking At My Mom and learn the same lesson those boys did. Because catcalling isn't harmless, it is a means of objectifying women and shaming them for being in public and, sometimes, it is a precursor to sexual violence. Hopefully, more men will see that the woman on the street is someone's mom, sister, daughter, a person who does not deserve to be frightened and objectified simply because of their gender.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

How Ink is Made

It is obvious from this beautiful video that the people at The Printing Ink Company miss Mr. Rogers as much as we do.