Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Strange Ways of Stardom

Jamaica's pop culture is one strange place. This guy looks like a crazy homeless man, but he's a major star:

Fortune Cookie

I don't understand my fortune cookie. It says:

"It is not necessary to understand. All that is necessary it to enjoy."

Tea Kettle Tree

It was 1:30 a.m. and I was walking Bella through my dark Curtis Park neighborhood, when I heard a tea kettle whistle coming from a tree. "Well, this is a novelty," I thought. "My neighborhood gets stranger by the day."

I traced the noise to the roots at the base of the tree, so I got down on all fours in the shadows and started digging through the leaf litter to find the source. I explained to Bella, "I'm not crazy. I'm not talking to a spirit in the tree, like Cinderella does with her Mother, or talking to the tree, like Frodo does with the Ents. I'm just trying to find the entrance to Peter Pan's underground Neverland lair, because he left the tea kettle on the stove." Meanwhile, Bella was buzzing about like "my master is so crazy."

Eventually, I uncovered a plastic water pipe, and even though there was no obvious air or water leak, I'm sure it was the culprit of the noise.

Very Much Liked "Mockingjay - Part 2"!

I was puzzled by the reviews of the final installment of "The Hunger Games": namely, "Mockingjay - Part 2", so last night I went to go see it for myself.

Movie reviews stressed that Jennifer Lawrence isn't in many scenes (actually she's in most scenes), that the movie is too claustrophobic (but at least no one stays in one place), that it's too grimly predictable (most wars are) - too many other unsatisfying things. I don't know what movie they saw. It faces the same issues other movie series do of tying up loose ends, but I thought they did well with their choices. Julianne Moore as Alma Coin and Donald Sutherland as President Snow were brilliant. Donald Sutherland's last laugh is precious! Why isn't he running for President of the United States?

Of the four movies, I think I prefer Part 3, namely "Mockingjay - Part 1". Reviewers didn't like that one either, because they said it didn't have enough action, but at least it was thoughtful. And Lorde curated the sound track, and her choices were brilliant.

I was aghast at a film clip shown before the main feature. Apparently a children's charity is teaming with "The Hunger Games" to raise money. It's so wrong. Don't they grasp the movie's theme? (Or maybe they understand it even better than I do.)

"Mockingjay - Part 2" doesn't have a brilliant sound track like "Mockingjay - Part 1", but there are songs elsewhere in the Universe that carry similar messages. Like this one:

Clam Jumper

Amused by conversation with Homeless Guy (H) while standing in line at the pharmacy:

H: Man, I got roughed up Halloween night! I was in the gutter over there across from Clam Jumper...

M: Clam Jumper?

H.: Clam Jumper, over by the light rail station near I Street. I was shouting to the ladies walking by on the sidewalk across the street, just trying to give good advice, like "Don't have sex until you're 21!" when these guys step out of a car, and one says to me "Looks like you need a fade."

M.: What did they do?

H.: They stomped all over my head! At first I tried to resist, but then I just gave up and let them hit me. My nose hasn't been working right since. A doctor looked at it and said "Yup, it's broken!" Now I can't blow my nose properly because it's too sensitive and the boogers are piling up inside and I have to reach up in there all the time (illustrating).

M.: That's terrible!

H.: You know, I'm a drunk and a meth-head - that meth really makes you go KKRRRAAAZZEEEE! - and one thing I want to know is, why don't they bring back Nancy Reagan's "Just Say No" campaign?

M.: I dunno. Maybe it doesn't work?

H.: But they should try! How do they know if they don't try? Nancy Reagan would sign off on that in an instant!

Laure Courtellemont Will Be In Sacramento December 11th!

Coming next month to Sacramento! So excited!

"The Debut"

I'm dancing in this event! Hip hop! Looking forward to it!
"The Debut" is just a week away and tickets are selling fast. Make sure you don't miss this event!

Tickets are just $10.

Faith in El Niño

The 16-day GFS forecasts are pretty optimistic about rain in northern California in December (but those forecasts are always optimistic). In the meantime, November will be a drier month than average in Sacramento.

Depressed by the lack of rain - we need it so bad - but Bill Patzert at JPL has deeper faith in El Niño:
The pool of warm water in the Pacific Ocean west of Peru is huge and very deep. “There’s been a tremendous distribution of heat, and that is definitely not going away” any time soon, said Bill Patzert, climatologist with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge. “I’m quite optimistic that the entire state is going to get hosed.

"This El Niño is so dramatically large. It’s so intense. It’s hard to imagine that it won’t deliver," Patzert said.

Suicide Bomb Trainer in Iraq Accidentally Blows Up His Class

Poetic justice:
In what represented a cautionary tale for terrorist teachers, and a cause of dark humor for ordinary Iraqis, a commander at a secluded terrorist training camp north of Baghdad unwittingly used a belt packed with explosives while conducting a demonstration early Monday for a group of militants, killing himself and 21 other members of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, army and police officials said.

Vitter Loses

Pleased that the Republicans lost the Louisiana Governor's race.

Lots of special circumstances there, but I am glad David Vitter's desperate last-minute effort to use Syrian refugee panic to his advantage failed so spectacularly. It sends a signal to other politicians that there's no profit in whipping fear on this topic.

Crow Funerals

Like Western Scrub Jays:
There's an unusual but known behavior among crows, that they gather around the bodies of their dead. A crow dead on the street or in a field will be surrounded by a few to a dozen or more crows, all seeming to contemplate their fallen comrade. The notion of crow funerals has been documented but not necessarily understood, so University of Washington biologists Kaeli Swift and John Marzluff decided to create experiments to find out what exactly is happening.


So like, right now for example. The Syrians need to come to America. But some people are all, "What about the strain on our resources?" Well it's like when I had this garden party for my father's birthday, right? I put R.S.V.P. 'cause it was a sit-down dinner. But some people came that like did not R.S.V.P. I was like totally buggin'. I had to haul ass to the kitchen, redistribute the food, and squish in extra place settings. But by the end of the day it was, like, the more the merrier. And so if the states could just get to the kitchen, rearrange some things, we could certainly party with the Syrians. And in conclusion may I please remind you it does not say R.S.V.P. on the Statue of Liberty. Thank you very much. *curtsy*


My sister and I making a raid on the Nestle's Quick (about 1962).

Happy Thanksgiving

Dancehall Tips

Trying to pick up Dancehall tips. I can work on the looseness, but it would be helpful to drop about 25 kilos first.