May. 27th, 2011 05:12 pm
I must escape the office soon, but: last night after practice, I rolled on over to Dante's to meet up with Joe. To see effin' GUITAR WOLF.

Yes, it was completely awesome. I couldn't understand a bloody thing he was saying for 90% of the show--apparently, my Engrish-to-English translation skills have waned, as of late--but that was one of the most amazing performances I've ever witnessed. They really, really know how to put on a show.

We also ran into about eleventy-billion different people I know, including Andrew, a girl I met while shooting at Salty's, Joe's former roommate, and several derby girls.

So, to sum up the evening: I touched Guitar Wolf! And then he threw a beer at me! And then I moshed on one leg, Guts 'n' Bolts slapped my booty, and Lethal Lolita "asked" me about roller derby.

This totally unplanned weekend is going to seem sleepy-tame after last night. Hot damn. Also: LOCK AND LOLL!

...okay, seriously. If you haven't seen Wild Zero, you really should. It's an experience. XD Hell, I may even set up a viewing prior to the show, if I can get my act together on the social planning end of things.

(and yes, I am absolutely going to that show. Juuuuust sayin'.)

Marching On

Mar. 7th, 2011 03:04 pm
If you have never seen March Fourth Marching Band, I will tell you this: it is exactly as fantastic as everyone claims. We went to the late show on Friday night, and it was 100% AMAZEBALLS. The music was fantastic, the costumes were rich and envy-inducing, and the showmanship was above and beyond. I'm absolutely in for next year's show, and I intend to wear a much more ridiculous-and-awesome getup! I need more hats.

I also surprised the hell out of myself by jumping on stage and dancing my ass off, during their audience-participation Dance-Off. As I worked my way towards the stage, I kept thinking, "what the crap? I'm not actually going up there." But, then I got to the front, and somehow talked myself into it. I didn't win the trophy, and I have no idea what anyone else was doing, dance-wise, but I had a surprisingly good time flailing around like an idiot in front of a room full of strangers, and at least I had room to dance without having some idiot spill half of his beer all over my leg. (yes, that actually happened) It was completely exhausting, but in that good way.

All the dancing and the lack of sleep on Saturday made practice truly brutal, but after some unexpected bumps in my schedule, and having crepes with [ profile] katlyn, I rolled on over to watch Brutal Beauty with a handful of Wreckers and Freshies. It was amusing seeing people we recognized from the league in the documentary, and it was fun

On Sunday, I picked up a few things for some house-prettifying projects, one of them involving a trip to the Rebuilding Center. I was sorely tempted to tear apart my downstairs bathroom, while there, because they had the perfect matching toilet/sink/bathtub set there, but, fortunately, I talked myself out of that. ;) I still have plans to throw down some accent wall paint soon, however, and I have a good lead on a free dining room table that will be far more awesome than the current one. (which is, quite literally, on its last legs, hurhurhur) After that bit of running around, I also did some website-prettifying tasks for Real American Dollars.

I got done with the latter early enough to talk myself into going to extra off-skates training before derby practice, and that turned into a serious beating. Something about off-skates derby training flips my overachiever switch, so I blew myself out during the off-skates, and then barely made it through the hour of on-skates practice. There was a point during pace line drills when my lower back muscles hurt so badly that I nearly started hyperventilating.

I don't think I've ever, ever trained through that much pain in my life, and I don't want to move today. Like, at all. But, damned if I didn't pull through that entire practice, and keep skating for the rest of the hour, after the endurance-cleared skaters were excused at quarter-til. The human body is an amazing thing.

And yes, I was the only not-cleared skater at practice yesterday. The few other not-cleared skaters were either sick, injured, or had quit Fresh Meat entirely. I was strangely not bothered by the fact that I was doing laps around the track by myself, while everyone else packed up.

Anyhoo, the question looming on my mind today? Whether to stick with the 8K for the Shamrock Run, or downgrade to the 5K. My foot seems to be doing somewhat better than it was the other day, especially the Achilles, but The Plague that's been going around at derby seems like it's trying to take me down. And, well, I haven't run anything beyond a 5K since I registered, so, er, that's not a great sign.

Well, whatever. I plan to go home tonight, sleep off Teh Sick, and then get up tomorrow and keep marching on.
Last night was pretty damned excellent. I got wind of a promotion for Google HotPot, which involved three free shows in Portland. I snagged wristbands for the first show, which was at freakin' Oaks Park Rink, and included skate rental for those who don't have their own pair. Skating + Live Music = Genius.

We were late getting there, but we still caught the tail end of Lifesavas, and the entire set by The Thermals, and both were pretty great. Joe also had a spectacularly good attitude about learning to skate, and even sounded like he wanted to go to an open skate session at Oaks, so he could skate more. Obviously, I'm in favor of this, heh. ;) And I can definitely appreciate a person who can fall on his ass repeatedly and have a good laugh about it.

If I had my way, I'd get passes to next week's show, because it involves The Dandy Warhols, and it's high time I saw them play, but unfortunately, it's during derby practice. Sigh. The link is above if any of y'all would like to try, though! The Dandys are from PDX, so I'm sure there'll be some other opportunity to catch them in the not-too-distant future... just probably not for free.

Speaking of shows that are not free, it appears I'll be seeing the March Fourth show on Friday. I've heard from multiple sources that their shows are nothing short of amazing, so I'm pretty jazzed. It's going to be an awesomely music-tastic week.

In closing, this shot is from the jewelry shoot I posted previously; I was also tasked with getting a headshot of the designer, so we kept it simple and used window light.

Why do I always go for the smirky shots? Heh.

Smirky Kimberlee


Jan. 20th, 2011 05:11 pm
Well, yesterday at The Job was not particularly happy-making, and I spent much of the day feeling drained of energy and headache-y... which, of course, makes little-to-no sense to me, seeing as I'd actually had a nice block of sleep the past few nights.

I did make myself some pretty excellent curry for dinner last night, though, and then I rolled downtown and had a hell of a good time at Neal's show. It's amusing that there's inevitably one person in the audience who's so completely un-self-conscious that they'll dance like a maniac at a show, even when absolutely no one else will join them. This show was no exception, and I eventually decided I was in enough of a groovin' mood to give the guy some implied props and join him on the dance floor for a song or two. He seemed pretty happy to no longer be the only one dancing, so hey, mission successful!

And speaking of mission successful, we finally, FINALLY have internet at the studio. I'm typing this from there right now, in fact! I'm so happy about this development that it borders on the ridiculous, which is a good thing, because the headache and tiredness has returned. Bleh. Let's hope some skating tonight takes the edge off.
I know several of you have mentioned Miike Snow in the past, and I feel rather foolish for not following up on that, because, damn, I'm loving these tunes and getting them for myself as soon as is humanly possible.

The contents of my existence over the past week can largely be summed up with the following:
A) Work Work Work
C) ...wait, WTF?

Things are going well, but I've definitely been thrown the occasional interesting curveball. I think I have too much on my plate to devote more than 2 minutes of thought to things outside of Points A and B, but a few things in list-y format:
  • Thanks to a lot of thought, a few good practices, and a well-timed message from [ profile] marykae, I've committed to trying out for Fresh Meat in a week or so. Odds are, I won't make it, because I'm new, and my endurance sucks, and there are 30-some-odd girls doing the special bootcamp that I wasn't able to do. But hey, no expectations is not a bad place to be.
  • My busted furnace is finally scheduled to be replaced! Yelp proved successful once again in helping me find some good heating companies to give us estimates, so not only are we getting a really nice, 98% efficient gas furnace, but we're also getting in on a ton of federal and state tax credits, so it'll be wicked-cheap. (comparatively speaking) Other than the fact that we've been freezing our collective butts off for the past three weeks at the house, this really couldn't have turned out any better.
  • I started watching Hellsing last night, in the hopes of powering through it so I can return the DVDs to their rightful owner in a reasonable amount of time. I'm only two episodes in, but so far, it's amusing.
  • I found a few spare minutes on Tuesday to throw together an infusion, and it seems to be progressing okay, so far. Hopefully the end result won't be awful!

Tonight, I wushu and consume a Killer Burger. Tomorrow, I get a massage, go to derby, and hit up a cocktail party. And Sunday? Nothing but gaming in the evening. And I'm sure any blocks of free time I manage to find over the weekend will involve working or studio things. Waaauuuuugghh.

No complaints, though. No complaints.
Well, I got busy with photo processing yesterday and forgot to post about last weekend. And I should, because it was pretty great.

Friday night was wushu practice, as always, and I've been working with Master Chen on a new nandao form for the past few weeks. At this point, we have several good pieces, but haven't strung them together into a cohesive whole, yet, and there are parts that definitely don't come naturally to me. But with more practice, this form will be badass, and 100% worthy of advanced competition. I may never make it to Nandu Land, but having a new and personalized form is exciting. Working on this at demo team practice is basically the only thing that's truly motivating me to go to wushu, at the moment.

After practice, I came home and had dinner, took a shower, and then had my bedtime tea and read a fucking book. Being home alone was fantastic. <3

Saturday, I went to Derby practice, and it went pretty well! I realized after practice that I didn't fall down even once, which came as a complete shock to me, so I hope it was due to increased skill, rather than lack of risk-taking. I have felt like less of an uncoordinated slob in general, over the past couple weeks, so I figured maybe the previous weekend's practice wasn't a complete fluke.

But no, the highlight was just after practice, when guest coach Napoleon (who's becoming something of a regular coach; she's been there for several weeks now) told me I looked a lot more comfortable on my skates. (!!!) "Whatever you're doing, keep doing it." D'aaaww! I'd already stopped feeling quite so awful about how I was progressing, but it was SO nice to hear that from her. It's amazing how supportive and encouraging some people are in the derby community, and it's obvious that many of them go out of their way to do that.

After that, I went to IKEA and picked out my new couch, and was fortunate enough to save some dolla' bills by finding the comfy chair I wanted in the As-Is section. Of course, I spent that on some new curtains and throw pillows to go with, but I've needed to get curtains for that room for a while, so it was a legitimate and long-overdue expense.

Then, I had a delicious dinner out, which was, unfortunately, riddled with some disturbingly awkward and uncomfortable moments. But, I got to dance it off with [ profile] katlyn afterwards at Holocene, until we got worn out on the guest DJ's selections. We sat and chatted in one of the side rooms for a bit, until a bouncer suddenly ordered everyone out of the room. It looked like some guy had gotten in a fight/hurt himself on the dance floor, but we didn't find out any specifics. HOORAY DRAMAZ. :p

Sunday was much better and far less dramatic: my new couches were delivered, and hoshit, the living room looks at least ten times more amazing. I'm withholding photos until I have a chance to clean up a bit more, because I'm re-thinking the furniture arrangement and considering painting an accent wall, but I'm excited to finally be doing something respectable with the living room.

Then, I met up with [ profile] _dilate_ at Oaks Park for the Halloween Bazaar. There were some cool classic cars styled up in spooky fashion, incredibly cool steampunk jewelry and accessories that I was tempted to buy, and also some strangely adorable crocheted Cthulhu and Shaun of the Dead dolls.

We had a mid-afternoon nosh at the Muddy Rudder after that, and then I went to Get Fit class at the hangar, and all of us derby girls had our asses thoroughly kicked by the trainer. It's basically an hour of bootcamp/circuit-type training, and I've always done circuit training solo, in the past, so it was quite a bit different. But dude, I worked HARD, and I'm still sore today, and I LOVE IT.

In between, I did a lot of cleaning and tidying around the house, and working on photos. I'm still more behind than I'd like to be on the photos, but I'm getting there. I guess I wound up doing quite a bit over the weekend, after all, but I had the luxury of choice. I wasn't committed to be at a bunch of places at any particular day or time... it was nice to just decide spur-of-the-moment, for once.

Oh, and I completely neglected to mention this last week, but on Thursday night, I went to see the Corin Tucker Band at the Aladdin. It was interesting to hear what she's doing now, outside of the context of Sleater-Kinney; we agreed that she didn't quite seem like herself, early in the set, but she was rocking it out by the end.

Feh, how is it almost lunchtime already? Time needs to slow down.
Question: Where is your favorite place for Indian food in PDX? I have been challenged to come up with a good Indian restaurant by Saturday, and I've only been to one place in town, thus far. I *could* probably find it again if I wanted to, but I don't even remember the name of it, so I figure there has to be something around that'd make more of a positive impression.

In other news, I went to the Scissor Sisters show after wushu last night, and it. Was. AWESOME. They sounded great, they knew how to perform and had a great flair for the dramatic, AND they got the whole crowd dancing like crazy by the end of it. Portland shows seem to have a way of being very sedate, so I was prepared to be all disappointed if this completely danceable set didn't get their booties shakin'. But, much to my surprise and pleasure, PDX stepped up. So, so fun.

I also went to a Run and Yoga class yesterday morning, at this place near 43rd and Hawthorne, and I *loved* it. I've been spotty with keeping up on running, and I've been meaning to get back into doing yoga at least semi-regularly, so this kills two birds with one stone! And, ~45 minutes of stretching and restoring after a solid stretch of running is basically the best idea ever.

My shoulders and upper-back are still wicked sore, though. I think spending all of PAX weekend with various bags over my shoulder didn't do me any favors. :/ But, I'm starting to feel better mentally, at least.

And finally, this day of the meme is lame, but here it is:

Day Nine: Two smileys that describe your life right now.

1. XD
2. :o

Day One: Ten things you want to say to ten different people right now.
Day Two: Nine things about yourself.
Day Three: Eight ways to win your heart.
Day Four: Seven things that cross your mind a lot.
Day Five: Six things you wish you’d never done.
Day Six: Five people who mean a lot (in no order whatsoever).
Day Seven: Four turn-offs.
Day Eight: Three turn-ons.
Day Nine: Two smileys that describe your life right now.

Day Ten: One confession.
Whooooof. Scattered, crazy, and likely poorly-written, but here's the weekend recap:

  • Went to wushu practice, and made the chain of bruises on my left arm worse again! But, I nailed down the new section of my nandao form and it was 100 times better than last week, so Master Chen gave me some new and slightly confounding material to work on. My new form is going to be fantastic when it's done, though, and I AM EXCITED.
  • Met up with Travis at the Blitzen Trapper show! They sound amazing live; they played a few new songs, and a lot of my favorites from their last album, and it was also nice to *finally* catch up with Travis a bit. I've been busy, but Amy has been even busier than I have (is that possible? heh), so I hadn't seen her and Travis in quite a while. Sounds like things will be slowing down for both she and I soon, though, at least, so that should hopefully change.
  • I was coaxed out to the Fez post-show, for mass quantities of booty-shakin'. Blitzen Trapper made me feel like dancing, but nobody wanted to dance *at* the show, of course. Sleepy Portland show crowds, jeez. DJ Gregarious is definitely improving; the mixing is getting smoother, and he quite possibly made my night when he played Rebellion (Lies) by Arcade Fire. Also, amusingly enough, I thought to myself at one point, "oh, I'm out dancing! [ profile] dawningday would be up for this," but then I realized I didn't have his number, so I shrugged it off. But then, moments later, there he was! Good to know the dancing train still rolls, even without my help. ;)
  • Peeled myself out of bed in time for a proper breakfast, and then rolled out to derby class. It's definitely going better, and I feel pretty confident about the parts that involve actually moving. (crossovers, sticky wheels, etc.) The parts that involve stopping? Uh, not so much. XD T-stops are going to be my mountain to climb, I can already tell.
  • MK and I also had our first Wreckers practice; it was roasty-hot in the hangar, but I learned a lot, had a good chunk of time to work on my knee-drops, and my inner thighs are *still* sore today. Holy damn.
  • Went home to shower, and then grabbed my laptop and kicked back at the Press Club on SE Clinton for a few hours, to eat crepes for dinner and work on my new business web site. Crepes were tasty, and I think I'm going to love the web site once I'm done with it.
  • Karaoke, which was fun, as always, and we also encountered a dude who was the first man to really, truly impress me at karaoke in a long, LONG time. His voice was amaaaazing, and he didn't sing a song that I even knew or liked, but his mad vocal skills held my attention from start to finish.
  • The aforementioned Impressive Guy also attempted to sing I'll Make A Man Out Of You from Mulan, which would have made my night, if the karaoke track hadn't been broken. (my wushu crew would understand my sentimental attachment to that song, heh) But, that did give me the idea of singing I Just Can't Wait To Be King, which was so, so fun. I need to make that song happen again, and soon.

  • Lazed around a lot in the morning, but managed to get some photoshopping done, and almost went to play kickball for an hour, but then didn't because I was short on time, and [ profile] kaptian and Hilliary had decided to opt out.
  • Biked on down to Brewfest to meet up with [ profile] marykae and Andrew, and drank a bit more beer than I'd intended to, but it was worth it. One beer did make enough of an impression that I actually remembered it: Reggae Junkie Gruit. There were some hilarious moments that usually involved one of us trying to find the other two, and it was really nice to just wander around, taste excellent brews, and relax.
  • Towards the end of things, I got hungry and bought a slice of pizza and a brownie from the Rogue brewery food stand, but the guys there gave me two brownies, even though I told them I only wanted one. So, I kind of accidentally made us some drive-by friends, by giving away the extra brownie to a guy sitting near us. It was nice enough chatting with them, and I'm pretty sure Andrew got to enjoy a bit of safety as a direct result of my action, so I consider that a job well done.
  • Biked back to my house at hyperspeed, so I could do a musician photoshoot for [ profile] virgoqueen7 and her musician partner. I took them out to Powell Butte and got pretty, pretty pictures, and [ profile] matrixleap  assisted me with hauling gear and keeping my strobes from falling over, which was really nice of him.
  • After the shoot, [ profile] matrixleap gathered me, [ profile] daemonwise and [ profile] herince_emyn together for a bite to eat over at Tik Tok, and then I went home, proofed the images from the shoot, downloaded and watched the new True Blood episode, and slept nowhere near enough.
I'm gearing up for event shooting this afternoon, and then doing absolutely nothing this evening. Except watching Netflix. And maybe playing Dragon Age. (which, yes, I did find time to play for a bit last week, too. Slow progress, I know.)
batskeets: (ken)
It recently came to my attention that Scissor Sisters is coming to town! They're playing the Roseland on 9/14. I think this will require my presence.

I know [ profile] _dilate_ is interested in going... would anyone else care to join us?

If I had time to say more, I would... but I don't. The weekend is nigh!
The last few days have been awful/crazy/awesome. I'm a little confused as to how all of that can happen so close together, because it's usually a long string of suckitude or a boatload of spectacularity. And yes, I'm making up words, but point being, things have been all-over-the-map in a very short period, and I'm accustomed to much more gradual shifts. But eh, such is life.

The New Pornographers show was really, really enjoyable. They did play the only song from their new album that I don't particularly care for (Silver Jenny Dollar, if you're curious), but they also played all of my favorites from the new record, plus a lot of favorites of mine dating back to friggin' Mass Romantic, so that completely made up for it. And yes, Neko Case *was* actually present for the show. I was also fortunate enough to run into [ profile] kaptian and Hilliary after the show, so I went out for drinks with them afterwards, and I may have been conscripted into joining their kickball team at some point in the none-too-distant future, heh.

Saturday was ROLLER DERBY. Oh my god, so fun. It took me probably the first 20 minutes of class to even remember how to skate without falling all over the place, but once I did, I felt like I was getting the hang of things by the end. [ profile] marykae and I both bought our own derby gear, so we each have our own fancy-pants non-rental skates now. We got to try them out during the open skate session right after the Derby class, and dear god, what a difference! And of course, I'm already thinking about what to paint on my shiny new derby helmet to make it extra-special. <3 I can't wait until the next practice!

We went to [ profile] twilite_embrace's for her housewarming after that, which was very chill, but quite enjoyable. There were some pretty amazing red velvet cupcakes on-hand, and I think at least 1/3rd of the people there had some connection to Wisconsin or Minnesota, which was kind of random. Also, having a coffee in one hand and a beer in the other at one point was fairly amusing.

Sunday was Veronica Mars and Waffles, and I think I need to put shredded coconut and chopped pecans into my waffle batter for the rest of my life. I spontaneously threw it in there on this occasion, and it was *delicious*, and went wonderfully with all the various waffle toppings I tried. But then again, I love coconut more than any human probably should. ;)

After that, I rolled on over to shoot Carolyn's Fall 2010 collection, and it went incredibly well. Our model had only done one photoshoot before this one, but she was moving like a pro by the end of it. And her adorably polite Japanese boyfriend helped me haul my lighting gear into the building, d'aawww. And, I have now heard legend of Green Tea Donuts in Japan, thanks to her, although I still don't believe that she's eaten 340 of them.

So, yeah, I'm pretty pooped out today, but feeling pretty satisfied. I'd say that I need to stop having such exhausting weekends, but you know? I'm having too much fun. And hey, I'm greedy.
FRIDAY NIGHT: I'll be heading straight from wushu to go see the New Pornographers at the Crystal! EXCITEMENT. I would still *love* some company, so let me know if you're going, or would like to. ([ profile] daemonwise?) If you're a Neko Case fan, she's a member of this band, and if you want to test it out, I'd be happy to throw an album or two of theirs at you. :)

I have much, much work to do today, because I'm taking some PTO later in the week. So, not much time for chatter.

Here's a shot from Sunday, though: camera in one hand, reflector in the other. Yeah, that setup was bit unwieldy at times, with the wind and all, but I'm a little bit wacky like that. ;) And when I showed her the preview on the camera's LCD and got to hear her go, "*gasp!* I LOVE it!" made it worth a bit of unwieldy-and-wacky.

Senior Portrait Sunday )

I'm looking forward to playing with a few shots I got of her among the grass and trees soon; the colors in that setting made her eyecolor pop like craaaaazy.

Yeah, I'm definitely feeling the excitement. And I get to do a fashion session with Carolyn this coming Sunday, which I'm definitely jazzed for. The last significant bit of fashion I did was the Spring/Summer 2010 campaign with Alyson, so I'm way overdue. Oh emm effing GEE.


Jun. 22nd, 2010 03:38 pm
I stayed out way too late for a Monday, which is completely my own fault. And then, my body said, "hey, let's wake up an hour before the alarm today!" But hell, it was worth it.

Last night was the Dandy Warhols Bike Ride and Karaoke Extravaganza, which I decided to head over to after work. I've been too overbooked to do any of this year's Pedalpalooza rides prior, but this one was pretty awesome. We cruised around to different spots around PDX where albums were recorded and videos were shot, and the organizers gave us little factoids about the significance of each place where we stopped. The particularly cool part was that one of the band members (Zia) was with us for the entire ride, so she'd interject with random corrections or insider details to go with the information the organizers told us.

We ended the ride at Dante's, where the Dandys had shot one of their videos, and had a little karaoke contest. They only karaoke version the organizers managed to track down was Bohemian Like You, which was, um, NOT one of the songs I knew well. Or at all. XD But, I'm never one to shy away from karaoke OR free swag, so I listened to a couple other folks do it first, and listened to a verse from the original recording through my futurephone, and then attempted to fake my way through it. Apparently, my efforts were good enough that Zia awarded me a Dandys t-shirt! WIN.

I also had a sort-of-date from the internet after the ride, which was okay, too. I don't think I want anything beyond friendship with this person, but I did have a good time, at least, and I didn't feel like a total clod while trying to make conversation. And biking home down Hawthorne is much nicer at night than it is during my usual commute time.

I don't know how I'm going to get through wushu tonight, but I'll certainly try. And then, I am going to sleep the sleep of the dead. Anyone who wakes me could very easily get punched in the throat. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

And, in conclusion, I've been left with the overwhelming feeling that I need a much cooler bike and helmet. Maybe I'll actually do something about that, eventually.
batskeets: (ken)
Ground Kontrol Update: Saturday evening sounds agreeable to most, so that's the plan! I'm thinking maybe 6 or 6:30-ish, in the hopes of getting some games in before it gets *too* terribly busy?

Also, [ profile] twilite_embrace sent out invites to Neal's show, which is at 9:30pm, so I'm thinking I might like to do both, if possible. Y'all are not obligated to join me for the show, but if you'd like to, let me know. :)

Speaking of shows, [ profile] _dilate_ and I went to see the Buzzcocks last night, and it was *awesome*. They played a lot of the songs I already knew, and it made me want to DANCE. The crowd was pretty sedate for a punk show, but at least there were a few people who were getting into it, so I flailed around as best I could in the space available. And man, there's something about seeing old dudes who've been around forever, still rocking the hell out of a venue that just warms my silly heart. They put on a great show, and I emerged half-deaf, covered in sweat, and thoroughly satisfied.

On a completely unrelated note, while I was kicking around with [ profile] katlyn and [ profile] daemonwise the other day, I was commiserating with the former on recent sad-making events, and the latter quipped something to the effect of, "this isn't a meeting of the Sad Sack Club." To which I replied, "nah, I have a dumptruck full of sad!"

After a flurry of silly jokes, brainstorming and speculative t-shirt ideas, an image came into my head. And yesterday, I got bored enough to open up Illustrator and put a very rough version to pixels:

The Sad Dumptruck Club )

I like that I did this, and I'm thinking that dedicating a little 30-minute chunk to silly design-y flights of fancy every week or so could be a nice way of exercising my inspiration muscles, and boosting my creative output. Here's to hoping...
Things are definitely becoming Good. I suppose they weren't necessarily bad, before... sometimes complicated, yes, but not out-and-out bad. And really, having angst over dumb things is basically one of my superpowers, so things tend to be overall better than I estimate.

ANYWAY. Dancing on Friday was equal parts hilarious and fantastic, aside from a stolen property scare. Fortunately, said property was all recovered an hour or two later, so we decided that called for a celebratory bite at the Roxy.

Saturday involved eating tasty, tasty crepes with [ profile] katlyn, because Chez Machin and Groupon are both fantastic. And then we both endured a good 90 minutes or so on the highway to get up to [ profile] herince_emyn and [ profile] matrixleap's for a musical marathon. Yeah, bridge construction on I-205 plus god-knows-what on I-5 equals absurd amounts of stop-and-go traffic. :p BUT, it was fun and worth the drive. And dude, Angela Lansbury with Chibiusa hair? She kind of rocked it.

Sunday was a quick in-home portrait shoot, and a bit of running around doing errands and talking serious business, until it was time for [ profile] virgoqueen7's show at Someday Lounge. I hadn't been to a show there before, but I liked the space, so I'll have to keep an eye out for other events there in the future. And of COURSE her set was amazing! After they finished, we stayed through part of the following band, and then [ profile] marykae, Andrew and I headed up to DoomCo for the LOST finale.

Keeping it un-spoilery, I will say that the LOST finale succeeded in not making me angry, so I was ultimately satisfied. As I was telling Jason (a.k.a. possibly THE most quotable person I've ever met), after quitting the show midway through Season 2, I was so detached from the characters that I didn't exactly care what happened, even after I started watching it again. I show up, and I laugh, and I occasionally hope that the annoying characters get tossed off a cliff. But story? They stopped having anything resembling a cohesive story ages ago. The ability to sit back and enjoy the ride has served me well.

In other news, I snagged all the necessary cables to hook up my XBOX to my computer monitor and speakers, so I camped out in my room for a good couple of hours last night and started in on Dragon Age. Can I just say? Having a few hours to just sit on my ass and play games was terrific. I may have to repeat the performance tonight, now that LOST is over and I won't be rushing off to the Bagdad after wushu. I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS.

That probably sounds silly if you don't play games, but... oh, wait, most/all of you play games, so it likely doesn't sound silly at all. This is why you are my people. <3

Anyhoo, it's Tuesday, and I'm only doing marginally well at getting more sleep, but Monday set a good pace on the rest of those goals mentioned on Friday. I feel pretty excellent.

Brain Fog

May. 18th, 2010 01:41 pm
This is obviously one of those days where nothing wants to work properly. This, apparently, also includes my brain.

Oh, I know! I can post about shows, on the off chance that anyone has interest. I have tickets for the following:

6/1 - The Buzzcocks @ Berbati's Pan
7/16 - The New Pornographers @ Crystal Ballroom
7/23 - Blitzen Trapper @ Crystal Ballroom

I also expect to be seeing Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground @ Mississippi Studios on 7/3. YOU SHOULD COME WITH ME TO THIS, because I love them to death.

I'm certainly open to other suggestions for awesome shows coming up, and I would love company for any of the above shows! So far, I only have a definite concert buddy for Buzzcocks, and maybes for The New Pornographers and Blitzen Trapper.

That is all... FOR NOW.
Here's the rest of that list. Again, in no particular order:

16. Get digital piano and play the hell out of it.
Oh lord, do I want to play. So much. I'm watching Craigslist like a hawk until a deal on a good keyboard pops up.

17. Stimulate the local economy.
This is something I've always wanted to do more of, but I didn't feel I could afford it. Now that money is more free-flowing, I could really take this on, and still have quite a bit left for savings. I've always been a fan of farmer's markets and locally-produced foods. I'd love to focus my girly spending on locally-made wearables, because I know great people who produce such things, and I want to support them. I've also sometimes been able to support local businesses by going to them for my own business' needs, too, and I love that and want to do even more of it.

18. Learn bike maintenance.
I know at least a few people who maintain their own bikes well, so why not me? Every time I ride my bike and look at my screwed-up back tire, it fills me with sadness.

19. Do something that scares the crap out of me.
No, this does not mean pursuing the realm of "extreme" sports. This is about confronting fear, and gaining strength from doing things I would previously have avoided, no matter how ordinary some of them might seem to others. Some of the things on this list could fit the bill, but I imagine the real triumph will be something very personal, and fairly difficult to quantify.

20. Tap dancing class.
Of all dances I've tried thus far, tap is probably my favorite. There HAS to be a tap class for adults in this town (EDIT: that does not also conflict with wushu practice). I've looked for this off and on with no luck, but confound it, THIS WILL HAPPEN.

21. Try out kettlebell and/or CrossFit.
I was reading about both of these things off and on, at the height of my fitness frenzy, and I wanted to try it, because functional strength training is fantastic. This might be a good opportunity to do so. I think I might be too wimpy for CrossFit, but maybe kettlebell would help me work up to it?

22. Aesthetic improvements for my house.
My bedroom is already well into this process, but the rest of the house essentially looks like a bunch of random crap haphazardly thrown together, because... well, that's what it is. I *would* like to get some paint in the walls, and then some art to go with it, and maybe some furniture, further down the line.

23. Art prints for my home, and possibly yours.
I've procrastinated on getting my own art prints sorted and printed, largely because doing that before I'm done painting didn't make much sense. But I have a lot of shots, and a lot of bare walls, and maybe you have bare walls that need prettying, too.

24. Doctors and dentists.
Because I'm the sort of person who doesn't seek medical care unless I'm having a problem, I still don't have a primary care physician or a dentist, after living in Portland for three years. This is dumb, and I should fix it.

25. Give more gifts.
I think I fell out of the whole gift-giving thing during college, because I had no money to spend. Still, when Christmas shopping time rolls around, I'm consistently reminded that I enjoy finding the perfect gift for people I care about, the thing they'd love but wouldn't expect. It'll likely be a thing I do when I'm struck with a great idea for someone, but I already have a couple ideas for upcoming birthdays and am putting them into motion, and I hope to make this more of a habit.

26. Leave room for spontaneity.
My calendar is taking over my life, and I do not like it. I'm something of a Plan Monster, and most of my major goals require me to be, and I'm usually assailed by raging guilt when I promise something and then fail to follow through on it. But, it *is* possible to leave room for large, unplanned blocks of time, and I must learn how to do so without becoming a flake.

27. Stop hating my job.
This could manifest in several ways. I could learn to accept the boredom and frustration, because it is only temporary. I could somehow alter the shape of my job so it becomes *less* boring and frustrating. Or, I could quit The Job entirely and do something else that I love much more. Which of these things it'll actually be? Biiiig question mark.

28. Teach an after-school program.
After shooting for an article at The Job about after-school programs and meeting some of the volunteer instructors, I had the thought of running an after-school wushu program. I'd be teaching older kids, *and* spreading the gospel of wushu. Of course, now that I might actually have time, the school year is almost over, but there's always this coming Fall.

29. BAKE.
I have not baked nearly enough, largely because this tends to run counter to goal #4. But hey, maybe doing this will teach me the meaning of moderation.

30. Let the right ones in.
Yes, I Have Trust Issues, but it doesn't have to rule me. There are people worthy of my trust, and I should know when to give it to them.

And, even though it has already been stated previously, an extra one to grow on:

31. Play more games.
The D20 campaign is starting off on the right foot, and this weekend, I am officially buying myself an XBox 360 and a copy of Dragon Age: Origins. Throw in monthly game nights and other such gatherings, and I'm already pretty well on my way with this. W00t!
I just fell upon yet another awesome costume idea that I want to do. This is becoming a problem, because Halloween is still a good 6 months away, and I already have no idea how I'll be able to choose my eventual getup! And I'm sure that, given that much time, I'll think of even more ideas in the months to come. Halloween needs to happen at least 5 times a year. :p

Anyhoo, yes, things are awesome. And I'll tell you why!

First off: STUDIO. It already sounded like a great space just from hearing Ben's verbal description. And he also sketched a diagram of the floor plan, which was good because I basically can't grok spatial relations without a visual. But, I got to actually see the place on Saturday morning, and just, WOW. The space was used by a now-retiring commercial photographer for ~20 years, so it's *really* well-outfitted. The shooting space is probably double the size of our old studio, there's already a cyclorama built in, not one but TWO gigantic softboxes to make use of, and a garage entry. Yes, so you can bring car-sized things in to shoot. :O And, outside of the shooting space, there's be a reception area, offices, a kitchen, stylists' room, waiting area... blagh, I can't even remember all of it, but it was great.

Anyhoo, we would be sharing with one other photographer, maybe two, but with a space this extensive, it's *really* not going to be a problem. The idea is to update some of the non-studio areas to look more modern--there's some *very* 1970s-ish linoleum and color in the place--and the other details of the agreement are still being worked out, and starting things off at the outset will certainly be tough. But, we already have some good ideas on the table, and sweet hairy jesus, it would be amazing if this space worked out.

After the studio meeting was a breakfast sandwich at Meat Cheese Bread, which I'd heard good things about, and which happened to be close by the studio. Sausage, shaved fennel, and some spicy variety of cheddar, all between two slices of bread pudding. That place definitely passes inspection, because that was one hell of a sandwich.

Then, it was my first Saturday wushu practice in a while, and it went shockingly well. The combined powers of the week off due to Spring Break, and my continuing efforts to beat the hell out of myself in the gym made it pretty painful, but my tornado kicks are starting to feel more floaty again. I've also figured out how to stop hitting myself in the face with my chain whip, which should at least last until Master Chen shows us more new moves. And I appear to be slowly winning the battle against my post-holiday gut! And I've also signed up for nanquan and nandao at Berkeley, so there's no bitching out on it now.

I really look forward to May 2, because then the constant soreness can end. Until I do it again next year. Because I secretly enjoy pain. :p

Friday karaoke was fun. We got to sing quite a few times, and through the powers of [ profile] marykae and myself combined, I finally did a RENT song. It's rather silly that it took me this long to work that in, considering how completely obsessed with the soundtrack I was years ago. The karaoke track they had us use was kind of ghetto--a duet with no color-coded lyrics? Seriously?--but it was still fun and I want to do it again. I apparently make a pretty kick-ass Joanne.

I also enjoyed some good tea and quality one-on-one friend time on Sunday afternoon, and I don't think I will ever get tired of that. Hyper-socialness has been happening for me quite a bit, as I challenge a lot of preconceived notions and old patterns, and you know? It's good to have people I can actually, you know, TALK to about my problems. Most people don't frequently fall under my Trust umbrella, so to have even a couple of Actually-Good People around me who do? Just, wow. I've been pretty exhausted these past couple of days, so I might need to think about slowing down a bit on the social things, if that continues. But for now, it's really, really good.

Okay, um, back to Saturday. It's vitally important that I tell you to go listen to Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground, because they're (wait for it) AWESOME. I think I love their album a little bit more each time I listen to it. They played at Berbati's Pan this past Saturday night, and the crowd was on the small side, but it was SUCH a treat to be there. I enjoyed their set A LOT and I wanted to give them more of my money. I was hoping they'd have albums for sale, but I had to settle for giving them five of my dollars for a t-shirt.

AND I got to enjoy the show with Really Good Company, before, during, and after. Going into it, I expected the evening to be equal parts Exciting and Terrifying, but Terrifying surprised me by not even making an appearance. Looking back on the evening, or hell, the entire day, I can't think of a single bad thing. Even under the best of circumstances, you never expect it to be that easy, but sometimes it just... happens.

I let up on my beer embargo a little bit that evening, but I kind of don't care. It was completely worth it. If you spend 6+ hours with the same person, and find yourself smiling on the ride home, you must be doing *something* right.

I don't know what I did to deserve all the good things that have transpired over the past month or so, but if there's more ahead, I'm so, so ready for it.
Yeah, most of Saturday blew goats, but I feel better after editing this:

Frost )

It's something of a comfort to know that, even on a day when the universe appears to be conspiring against me, and I'm freaking out and running around doing damage control, I can still put out a damned hot photo.

SO! The GOOD part of Saturday was the Jonathan Coulton show, and I enjoyed that immensely. I'd been texting with [ profile] herince_emyn just before the show about sitting together, so I was looking for her when I got there, but I ran into [ profile] xplo_eristotle first. Of course, turning towards him to say howdy meant that Emmy was right behind me, and I didn't hear her calling my name above all the other chatter in the theater. So she had to call my cell phone to get my attention, and it was rather hilarious at the time.

Anyhoo, once I got situated and all that, we had lots of fun watching the show! Paul and Storm were quick with the funny comments throughout ("...six relatively cheap panties have been thrown," heh), and JoCo sang the Ikea song, which I hadn't heard before. And they all got together and did the full set of Fingertips from TMBG's Apollo 18 album, which was AWESOME. (I always liked to listen to them all at once, too <3)

On Sunday, I was interviewed by [ profile] marykae! I was still waking up when she arrived, so I blanked out on some questions and will probably sound retarded, but it was still fun. And then I finished painting the green part of my room, and wandered off to a planning meeting for the Imnaha trip. It's going to be freakin' FUN. I have never been anywhere near that part of Oregon!

Also, due to that trip, I will be without Internet and cell phone coverage for FOUR DAYS, you guys. (3/19-3/22, specifically) I figure I should mention that ahead of time, so nobody assumes that I've been a victim of foul play, based on my absence from Teh Internets. Because I basically live on the internet, you know. ;p

Anyhoo, I'm going to *try* and get some damned rest this week, but knowing me, it probably won't work too well. I'm super-tired today. I should go to bed early tonight after wushu. If you guys see me online after 9:30pm tonight, please feel free to smack me over the head with words and tell me to go to bed.


Feb. 13th, 2010 02:05 pm
I bought me some Jonathan Coulton tickets for the 27th! If you are going, we should hang. :D

Also: Ticketmaster can die in a fire. I should have gone to the box office. :p

Lots of places to be today. Time to put on my face, heh.

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