Thursday, September 18, 2008
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
First off, we have a children's book about weed. “What’s that, Mommy?” asked Jackie. “Are you and Daddy smoking a cigarette?”
Jaw-dropping - you gotta read it.
Next. Last night at work, Dances With Chickens, Token Boy Librarian and I spent a lot longer than you might reasonably expect trying to figure out if the above observation is correct.
Third: proving that comic books are abusable too, there is Paul Karasik's resurrection of the work of Fletcher Hanks, I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets.
Karasik's brother was in the library last week and in the course of trying to hunt down some Love & Rockets anthologies, he clued me in to this deeply, deeply, deeply weird collection. It's psychotic 1930's misanthropy in the guise of superhero stories - the superheroes are unrelievedly "mysterious" and "remarkable," and tend to thwart the plans of criminals (sort of like Dick Tracy with fewer clothes) only after a significant number of innocent people have been gunned down/gassed/sent into space/killed by giant spiders.
Karasik's web site has a ton of insane images of Hanks' work.
Lastly, if you're going to abuse Pocky, why not make it Thomas the Tank Engine Pocky? I love the little squad of schoolchildren massed behind their giant pig overlords. I never know what's going on in Thomas.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
My friend Aimee was sitting on the floor one day putting on her boots. As she picked one up, she felt something shift inside it. As all boot-wearing mamas know, kids love to put Hot Wheels cars, sidewalk chalk, and walkie-talkies in boots, so she sighed and upended the boot, expecting a piece of train track or a handful of crayons to fall out. Not expecting a live mouse, anyway. She and the mouse looked at each other for a second, then the mouse ran away. She turned to the two cats watching from the bed and gestured futilely toward the fleeing mouse. "What do I PAY you two for?!" she yelled in disgust.
My friend Juliet was at the SuperFresh the other day, picking up the peanut butter and the contraceptives, when she passed a dad with a full cart and three kids. He had a 6-year-old with him, a baby in the baby part of the cart, and a toddler in with the groceries. All of a sudden the toddler threw up. All over the groceries and out the bottom of the cart. Juliet had her own kids with her, so she made a "Yikes" face at the dad and got the hell out of there.
My friend [name redacted 'cause would YOU want the whole world to know you have IBS?] has IBS because she refuses to eat anything with a square cell structure.
I haven't had to deal with a supernatural Japanese hair-cutting monster.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
"Find a female dwarf. With an axe," commanded Dances With Chickens. "A two-handed axe," she clarified. "No, that one doesn't look drunk enough."
Making fun of avatars is dirty pool. It's like pushing a baby out of a swing - inexcusably heartless, because it's just too easy. Any time a person creates an avatar, he or she is solemnly trusting the forbearance of the rest of the human race. For example, my Second Life avatar is eight feet tall and wears a skin-tight tuxedo. Make of her what you will.
However. Once Token Boy started scrolling through the miniatures representing human wizard characters, I just couldn't resist.
"There's got to be something in here about getting this fucking thing off my hand."
This guy... throws birds at people? That doesn't seem to be a real special power.
"I remember... I remember... clapping."
"Get that Balrog offa my lawn! I'm not cleaning up after that thing again!"
Being a wizard is still no excuse for the pornstache. Plus, this guy's name is Garish MacRae.
Oompa Loompa? or balding Mae West?
"Wait for the light."
"My tumor, let me show you it."
"My pipe wrench, I will smite you with it."
"Where's that can of tuna? I found the opener."
Token Boy's character is a young mage, so he was in the market for a wizard without a beard (and, presumably, without a bird, a can opener, fire instead of hands, or a terrible mustache). This young fellow was the closest thing. Unfortunately, his name is "Marcus Starsong," which I'm pretty sure is D&D code for, "Our community embraces people of all orientations," and, while it's true that role-playing games such as D&D offer people an opportunity to explore personae that they will never inhabit in real life, I don't believe Token Boy is working that particular side of the cobblestoned alley.
Dances With Chickens said, "Not this guy, he's kind of geeky." Right.
- "LEGO" is an elision of the Danish words for "good play," "LEg GOdt". In Latin, "lego" means "I bring together". Just a coincidence.
- The world's children spend 5 billion hours a year playing with LEGO bricks.
- My children account for about 3 billion of those hours.
- There are some awesome stop-motion LEGO fiends out there.
Some are Harrison Ford fans:
Some of them seem to believe that Han Solo and Chewbacca REALLY know their ship:
And then there's actual genius:
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
There are showgirl outfits made entirely of human hair. There is a monster truck made of human hair perched atop a woman's head. There are spiderwebs, there are bats. There are crowns, birds, helmets, a fishbowl, the Olympic rings.
Detroit Metro Times photos/George Waldman
The color! The eyelashes! The outfits! The models: beautiful real women, mostly African American and mostly not teenage stick figures. I imagine it takes stamina to sit for these hairdos. Lots of glue. Lots of glitter.
Lots of respect to the publishing company that put the money into this beautiful book, powerHouse Books of (where else?) Brooklyn, NY.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Look at her laughing - she makes Bourdain look like a puss!
My kids were SO impressed: the one said, "If I ate a grub I would spit it out!" Of course, he says that about mushrooms too. The other said, "Can we see one with the grubs going in people's noses?"
Jesus, what am I raising?
On the other hand, they both ate squid for dinner with an adventurous aplomb I've not seen since their first encounter with chocolate chips. Thanks, James.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I picked all the brown food. heh.
Next week is National School Lunch Week.
No, really. It's apparently not a joke. I remember school lunch - I used to sit on my sandwich because I didn't want to eat it and the teachers would walk around inspecting your lunchbox to make sure that you ate everything. No wonder we're all obese in this country. Hrmph.
So, on their web site you can cast your vote for which mascot you think would best represent National School Lunch Week. Take a look. Really. They're all terrible - ugly, badly-drawn, and actually gross - but it's Yumi Rice Bowl that's gonna be chasing me down the halls of my junior high in my nightmares tonight. They put sticks in her brain! AAAaaghhh!!
A far better mascot for National School Lunch Week (I mean come on! who comes up with this crap?!) would be Cathy (above), the virtual lunch lady in the Virtual Cafeteria. You really have to try this one out - you can choose what you want for lunch (actual school lunch menus are used) and see how nutritious each item is. The Virtual Cafeteria tots up your total calories, protein, etc. - oh, and also how much you've spent - and Cathy gives you praise for picking the healthy stuff.
My favorite part? The Condiments tab in the lower right-hand corner. That's got to be the cutest illustration of a mayonnaise packet I've ever seen.
Monday, October 01, 2007
Halloween is the best. Best holiday. Best color scheme, best iconography, best outfits, and best shopping - with candy, one size fits all!
I just lifted a new paperback off the shelf written by a guy who REALLY gets it. Titled Extreme Pumpkins, it's all about the best ways to gut a pumpkin, how to get 3-foot flames to spurt out the top of a pumpkin, and how to make a bathtub full of blood.
But I wouldn't have blogged about it if it hadn't made me laugh out loud three times. Three times. That's my threshold. If you're once, twice, three times funny, you're gonna get blogged.
1. Cannibal pumpkin. A big jack o'lantern with a teeny screaming jack o'lantern wedged in its mouth. Yeah man.
2. Puking pumpkin. An ill-looking jack o'lantern with pumpkin guts welling up and out of its mouth (and nostril, nice touch!).
3. Punk rock pumpkin. Painted flat black and then carved, this jack o'lantern gets staples for eyebrow rings and a piece of hose clamp for a lip ring.
Additional over-the-top Halloween projects are documented in full on the man's website. Go forth. Scare the neighbors.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
If you said "bubbles," you're three years old. Get off my site, you're too young for all this.
But if you answered, "bubblewrap," then THIS is for you! Thank you Ava for the link!
And if you answered, "a gearshift knob with the Virgin Mary inside," well, I sort of wish I could say I couldn't help you... but I can. For $18.95 plus shipping and handling, the Virgin of Guadelupe can reside in your car like Our Lady of Blessed Acceleration. While you're there, at my old friend www.latinworksco.com, pick yourself up a dozen cascarones, blown eggs filled with confetti and covered with colored tissue paper.
Two tips about the cascarones, by the way:
- Hold onto them for a few months until the shells really dry out. They're shipped pretty fresh, so at first they don't splinter when you crack 'em, they just kind of crush.
- Don't use them at a friend's apartment, even when she's having a party. It will take her a while to get all the confetti vacuumed up, and she'll be kind of cranky about it.
Monday, August 06, 2007
You know that part in Dangerous Liaisons when John Malkovich, tricked into breaking up with Michelle Pfeiffer by the devious and jealous Glenn Close, keeps murmuring "It's beyond my control" and Michelle Pfeiffer keeps screaming at him to stop saying that?
Every time I step close to my back vegetable garden I am put in mind of that scene. That overgrown, mutinous thing: whenever I go near it I am bit, stung, scraped, entangled, or, as today, irrevocably grossed out.
I was examining the latest pumpkin (and may I say thank you pumpkins for turning beautifully Halloweeny orange - in AUGUST! you dumbass vegetables will have long returned to compost by the time we'd want to put you on the porch! stupid... pumpkins...), and when I pulled back some weeds - EW! The weirdest mushrooms I have ever seen!
Took a picture, came back inside, googled "dog penis mushroom". Ok: I know better ways to identify living things; I am one of about 230 people who own a copy of G.W. Hudler's classic Magical Mushrooms and Mischievous Molds, for pete's sake. I understand character keys and taxonomy, and I know where to find the online species databases.
But when you want to identify a mushroom that looks like a dog's dick, man there's nothing faster than the straightforward approach.
Stinkhorn. Mutinus elegans. Devil's dipstick.
The kids are into the folk-and-fairy creatures right now. In the car we're listening to The Spiderwick Chronicles (read by Mark Hamill, an interesting choice), and at home they are poring over compendiums of wee folk and dragons. In part, those books are about looking for and interpreting signs of the "magical creatures" around us.
Nibbled leaves, flattened grass, and unusual flowers are all supposed to be evidence of various sprites, fairies, etc.
Yeah. I'd like to see the wings on the fairy who left these in my garden.
(and for Christina, here's how to cultivate them)
Saturday, June 02, 2007
Elric! Red-eyed, pointy-eared, white-skinned Elric! He of the REEELY big, er, broadsword! and the huge hair! and he's, like 428th Emperor of BøyswhöreadElric Névergëtląid! And the guy who writes him is apparently honestly named Michael Moorcock.
Elric has inspired MORE fan art than perhaps even Dawnstar (speaking of tokenism) (although not as many people seem to have named their pets after him). Please for me click these few things:
- REALLY big broadsword (and, my husband points out, a really rockin' man-panty)
- not a girl!
- not gay porn!
- not Edgar Winter!
- (Edgar Winter)
- ok maybe kind of a girl!
Good luck with that!
Thursday, May 17, 2007
A model of the proposed Czech national library. Apparently, the Czechs hate it, but I say godspeed, you alien-infatuated Simpsons-watching slime monster architect emperors.
And when I went looking for spotted dick on the Internet, I found this bunch of hat-wearing get-a-lifers. Wow.
Thursday, May 03, 2007
This monk looks like someone. Maybe a guy in a Clint Eastwood movie? Bah. It's not coming to me.
And you know, he can clasp his hands and look furtive all he wants - I just don't think he's going to hold out against those tits. What's that dress made out of anyway? Rubber?
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
This librarian blog thing is getting downright eerie. Every time I happen upon a blog that I think is funny or interesting, it turns out that the blogger is another librarian. SJ. Maughta. MotherReader (mother, reader, smartmouth). fusenumber8 (who got an advance copy of the next Kiki Strike novel, must be nice to work at Donnell). Marissa (also a Daniel Craig fan). Julie at work. There's a ton of em.
And just last night I came upon NixieKnox, who, come on, her blog is Your Friendly Neighborhood Librarian! In addition, she has two kids, lives in Detroit (which is a lot like Baltimore), Daniel Craig is her secret boyfriend, and she really liked Kiki Strike in the Shadow City, such a great read, kind of like if Wednesday Addams lived in Manhattan and made friends; go to the website, it will satisfy your craving for detail and intrigue. So we're practically the same person.
To say nothing of the Society for Librarians* who say Motherfucker. That one puts me back on the rails every time.
He had to ravish her - he had to kill her!
Gosh I think I've HAD this dream - the one where I'm Parker Posey? and my tree-limb arms are like suspended from the ceiling and somebody's painted out my nipples and I'm being strangled and my coif is getting a little disarranged? Wait no I just have the dream where my teeth fall out.
You know most 1950's and '60's pulp porn was erotica disguised as cautionary tale... or cautionary tale tarted up to look like erotica. This is a humdinger of the genre. The teaser on the first page reads:
Harlot Mother!Churning. That's actually kind of effective imagery. But what I like is that it's not clear whether the john or the boy strangled the mother. Hm! Must read more! (Well actually not - I've had this thing for probably ten years and never even cracked it. I'll just leave it in the closet for the boys to find when they get older.)
He was blessed with a sordid memory of his 14th birthday. For on that night he saw his mother twisting and churning in the arms of a strange man, and ever after Sean McClain would know no peace. Not in the orphanage where they sent him after they took him shuddering from her grotesquely strangled body... that was where he had the first dream. Not later, when he joined the Police Force ... the dream of the wanton, willing, enticing blonde whose face was a mask of Death.
This is an original Nightstand Book
Monday, April 23, 2007
Inspired by Maughta (and excuse me may I say Yo? if you want to know what not to read, Maughta has an entire very funny blog basically devoted to the subject), I had a quick flip through my small collection of pulp paperbacks with covers too campy to pass up, and present to you this gem.
Copyright 1961, Things With Claws is a short story collection edited by Whit and Hallie Burnett. It originally went for thirty-five cents, but pencil marks inside indicate it has made the rounds of used book sales priced at 50 cents, 19 cents, and 9 cents. I got it for a quarter, a pretty good bargain.
The stories are reprinted mostly from Story magazine and were originally published in the forties and fifties, by such fantasy luminaries as Daphne du Maurier, Byron Liggett, etc.
But what I like most about this cover is that despite the amount of time someone put into that ludicrously unique painting, they couldn't bother to spend ten minutes on a cover design that wouldn't require the hyphenation of "creatures" in the tagline.
Pray for me - I'm going into the playroom closet to find the even tinier collection of ancient pulp pornography. That stuff is the Hello Kitty of my book collections.
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Lucky, lucky Albanians. Oh, wait...