May 2009 Archives

Come back Ewok

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This is an amusing clip shot during the filming of Return of the Jedi.

Warwick Davis' Return of the Ewok

Taste of Cincinnati, trash fest

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People of Cincinnati and visitors to our fair city.  Will you please throw your garbage in a trash can when attending Taste of Cincinnati?  You know, those round or square containers that are placed every 15 or so feet?

Yes, I know people clean up after the festival, but what is so difficult in throwing your garbage away so that what little seating is available is somewhat sittable?

Also, I didn't see any recycling bins for plastic bottles.  Pretty bad, especially since they were selling all soft drinks in plastic bottles.

Overall, I felt that the food was mediocre.  Good and distinctive restaurants don't need Taste of Cincinnati for exposure and so they don't participate.


Photo: New Ritz and Oreo Packaging

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I like the Ritz and Oreo packaging that I saw the other day at Target.  It's a much cleaner and simpler look with a design aesthetic.  I especially like the word Oreo with each letter in a white circle, reminiscent of the white icing middle.

In contrast with the beauty of the new package, we have the old Double Stuf packaging on the right.  Yes, it is spelled Double Stuf with one "f".
OreoRitzPackaging.jpgIt looks like there may be a functional change behind the package redesign.  It looks like you can open the Oreo package and reseal it by lift the tab on the top. OreoPackaging.jpg

NYTimes.com: A Prom Divided

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From NYTimes.com: A Prom Divided

"It's awkward," acknowledges JonPaul Edge, a senior who is white. "I have as many black friends as I do white friends. We do everything else together. We hang out. We play sports together. We go to class together. I don't think anybody at our school is racist." Trying to explain the continued existence of segregated proms, Edge falls back on the same reasoning offered by a number of white students and their parents. "It's how it's always been," he says. "It's just a tradition."
It's pretty surprising to me that this type of thing still exists.  I wonder which prom Asians would attend if you lived down there.
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More marketing genius.  Saw this at the local BMW dealership and thought it was pretty funny.  What was just your normal detailing is now Swine Flu Sanitization.  I like how the sign says that you should "Protect it", as in your car from the Swine Flu. 
From NYTimes.com: A Chili Sauce to Crow About

An article about the ubiquitous Tuong Ot Sriracha sauce (you'll recognize the bottle).  I did not know that it was an American creation.
Yahoo.com: Shanty home of 2nd 'Slumdog' child star torn down

The 9-year-old girl who starred in "Slumdog Millionaire" dodged pieces of falling debris Wednesday as she tried to salvage twisted metal and splintered wood -- all that remained of her bubble-gum pink home after authorities demolished part of a city slum where she lived.
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Ten policemen beat Rubina's father with their sticks for 15 minutes shortly before the demolition began, sending him to the hospital, family members said.
It's sad to see that with all the success of Slumdog Millionaire, that kids in the movie are still living a life of poverty.

"Marketing genius" (photo)

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If I drink a 32oz soft drink every day, I can have a free one of Friday.  Sweet!
Via OMGPosters.com: Kevin Tong's Printing Process (Mogwai Poster)

3495862581_828b29a09e.jpg.jpegAs printing technology gets more advanced and everyone can print great photographs on their home printer, I find myself being drawn to posters screen printed by hand.  Computer printers and larger print presses combine four different colors (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black) to print photorealistic images.  Screen printing is different and much more difficult.  In screen printing, each color printed uses its own screen.  You want to have 12 colors?  You'll need to have 12 screens.  And between each color, the ink needs to dry before the next layer can be printed.  The difficulty in this lies in registration, the placing of each screen perfectly above the print so that all the colors are in line.

Generally artists will work with three or four colors and create designs that work within that constraint.  Limited colors force the designs to be stronger.  And I appreciate the craftsmanship involved in producing a poster by hand. Kevin Tong documents this process in a series of photos below.  Kevin Tong's poster is available for purchase at tragicsunshine.com UPDATE: Print is now SOLD OUT.


Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.
From NYTimes.com: Overhaul Likely for Credit Cards

Banks are expected to look at reviving annual fees, curtailing cash-back and other rewards programs and charging interest immediately on a purchase instead of allowing a grace period of weeks, according to bank officials and trade groups.

"It will be a different business," said Edward L. Yingling, the chief executive of the American Bankers Association, which has been lobbying Congress for more lenient legislation on behalf of the nation's biggest banks. "Those that manage their credit well will in some degree subsidize those that have credit problems."

As they thin their ranks of risky cardholders to deal with an economic downturn, major banks including American Express, Citigroup, Bank of America and a long list of others have already begun to raise interest rates, and some have set their sights on consumers who pay their bills on time. The legislation scheduled for a Senate vote on Tuesday does not cap interest rates, so banks can continue to lift them, albeit at a slower pace and with greater disclosure.
Credit Card reform on the surface sounds like a good idea, but now some of the changes seem to have a negative impact on those who have been paying on time or paying their balances in full.  Credit card companies still make money on those who pay off their balances because the credit card companies take a percentage of the sale from the merchants. 
From NYTimes.com: Chinese City Is Chilly to a Sex Theme Park

Sex in China has a long and varied history, as evidenced by accounts of carnal excess in "The Plum in the Golden Vase," a Ming-era classic, and more recent tales of Mao's insatiable appetite.

But an attempt to open the first sex theme park in China was quashed by local officials over the weekend, well before construction was completed.
I can't imagine a sex theme park going up anywhere in the United States outside of Las Vegas.  I had to blog about this because of this picture.
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From ESPN.com: Gruden joins 'Monday Night Football'

Gruden will join play-by-play man Mike Tirico and analyst Ron Jaworski in September, replacing Tony Kornheiser.
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Kornheiser decided to step down after three years of MNF, citing his fear of flying.

"I am totally grateful for the MNF opportunity that I truly enjoyed the last three seasons," he said. "I feel we got better each year. My fear of planes is legendary and sadly true. When I looked at the upcoming schedule it was the perfect storm that would've frequently moved me from the bus to the air. I kept looking at the schedule the past month and wanted to find a way to quietly extricate myself."
Kornheiser actually stepped down voluntarily? For fear of flying?  Couldn't they have picked up John Madden's bus on the cheap now that he isn't using it anymore?

When I first heard this story, I thought ESPN had canned Kornheiser because he sucked on MNF.  Kornheiser is fine on his show PTI, but added nothing worthwhile on MNF.

Photos: Maifest 2009 Covington, KY

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I crossed the river into Covington, KY for Maifest on Sunday. 

What is Maifest?  From the Covington, KY website:

"Maifest is to celebrate the first spring wine, theoretically, and Oktoberfest is in honor of the first Oktoberfest, which was King Ludwig's wedding, in the 1800s, in Bavaria. But for our purposes, they're basically the same."
I didn't see a lot of wine being served there, definitely not a wine festival.  It is pretty much as they say, Oktoberfest in Mai, or May as we like to call it.  But, it is a nice festival and it was a beautiful sunny day to walk around MainStrasse to people watch and to look at booths.  The vendor booths are interesting, but really, how many Redneck Windchimes does one need?

Surprisingly the MainStrasse area wasn't too crowded Sunday afternoon and much of Main Street was pretty empty.  But, I love walking around there.  Main Street is so quaint, so much character, one of the nicer areas in greater Cincinnati.

We discovered that a new place called Europa is opening up on Main Street in a couple of weeks.  They were open, handing out free sample cones of their tasty Gelato.  In addition to Gelato, they'll be serving High Tea and baked goods.  I spoke to the owner and she said that they're planning to be open until 1AM on Friday and Saturday.  Sounds like a great place to pick up a late night snack.

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Europa3.jpgHere are some photos that I took:




From ObeyGiant.com

Lance Armstrong is back training for this years Tour De France. For one of the "Triple Crown Events", the Giro d'Italia, he is going to be riding a Shepard Fairey Designed Trek Madone Bike and Giro Helmet.

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From NYTimes.com: Tracking Down Auto Warranty Callers

On Sunday, Senator Charles E. Schumer held a news conference to complain about car warranty telemarketing calls.

Mr. Schumer said he had received several of these warranty renewal robo calls -- the latest taking place last Wednesday.

"I've had enough," Mr. Schumer said. "These are scam artists."
I haven't received one of these calls but I know a lot of people who have.  But, now that politicians are annoyed things will probably get done to stop them.

UPDATE 5/15/09
NYTimes.com: F.T.C. Cracks Down on Car-Warranty Robocalls

The seller took in more than $10 million as a result of the calls, as well as related mailings, according to the commission.
Scams work, that's why they do them until they're caught.

Icee Float

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IceeFloat.jpgSaw this concoction at the Sharon Woods park concession stand.  I have always had a fondness for Icees.  When I was a child I would get a coupon from my doctor for a free Icee after each of my frequent allergy shots.  So, now and then I still indulge in a traditional Icee after a long run.

I'm not sure about this Icee Float though.  The white stuff on top is soft serve ice cream.  I asked if the ice cream was just on top and was told that it's actually layered throughout with the Icee mix.  That doesn't really sound good to me as the textures are really different.
From TMZ.com: Broke-Ass Supervillain After Shadow Hare

An evil genius has placed a $10 bounty on the masked super-hero roaming the streets of Cincinnati -- which means Shadow Hare officially has an arch-enemy ... and he's really, really cheap.
Check out the story.  It's worth it just for the Craigslist posting.
From NYTimes.com: G.O.P. Worries About Sounding a Negative Tone

"They have to avoid being stigmatized as a bad bunch of people," he said of the Republicans.
I think it's a little too late for that.

Star Trek Bachelor Pad

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Telegraph.co.uk: Tony Alleyne and his Star Trek flat

Really cool.  But, like any other modern design, where do you hide the clutter?

UPDATE: Just read the captions to the pictures.  Actually kind of sad.

Trekyourself Obama Vulcan

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Ok, I had to do this.  It's the Obama Vulcan!  It's made from the official Obama portrait.  This autoplays with sound, so I'm putting it in the next section.

Trekyourself

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Thought this was pretty amusing.  Go to Trekyourself.com and turn yourself into a Star Trek character.  The technology for the face mapping software is getting to be quite impressive.  Because it autoplays and there's sound, I put the images after the jump.

Colonial One NYC Flyover

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Pick another Fortune Cookie

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Got this winner the other day. 
Here are a few photos that I took of the Flying Pig Marathon with my iPhone.  I was standing on Gilbert Avenue by WCPO Channel 9.  It's a pretty nice vantage point where you can see all the runners heading out and the half marathoners returning.

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Saw this Adwords ad on one of my blog pages.

I have been repeatedly told by my co-workers that Battlestar Galactica is not an appropriate first date topic.  I wonder what the guy to girl ratio is on the "Geek 2 Geek" dating website.
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Had to climb on to my roof for some air-conditioner maintenance.  Everyone who's been on my roofs says that I should build a small roof top deck.  It's an intriguing idea, but one that's probably a lot more complex to implement.

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