Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Strange Maps: an exhibit by Lala Gallardo and Luis Katigbak

It all started when I attended the Graphika Manila conference last December with my friend, visual artist Lala Gallardo. (Lala's an immensely talented young artist who's had a bunch of solo and group exhibits, at places like the CCP, Big Sky Mind, Store for All Seasons, and Chunky Far Flung Gallery in Cubao.) When we were taking a short break from the lectures, she suggested that we work on an exhibit that would combine her images with my words.

I ended up writing ten very short pieces of prose, which Lala is incorporating into ten works of mixed-media art. Some themes emerged in the process: distances and how we deal with them, the relationships between people and places, the faint yet constant yearning for elsewhere. “Strange Maps” seemed an appropriate title.

Photo by Joelle Jacinto. Thanks Joelle!

We'd like to invite you all to the opening at the second floor gallery of SaGuijo next Tuesday, February 27, 7 PM! By a wonderful coincidence, a Play4Serve production is scheduled for that same night, and the lineup is killer: Sandwich, Imago, Daydream Cycle, Teeth, Pedicab, Vin Dancel's new band Peryodiko, and this new all-girl supergroup called Duster which I'm very excited about, which counts among its members Katwo of Narda, Kris of Cambio, and Myrene of Sandwich/Imago! Hoo boy. Also, according to Cris Ramos, The Bitter Pill will be playing too, for the first time in far too long a time.

So, go to the exhibit opening at 7 PM, then head on down for the gig afterwards. :) Sounds like a great night out to me. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

The Sad Story of Thurber the Hamster

"So after wanting a hamster for months and buying books on hamster care and lurking on hamster owner online communities and message boards and occasionally dressing up like a hamster and roaming the streets of Makati while making loud squeaking sounds (okay, that last bit may be untrue) -- I finally did it. I got a hamster." (Read the rest here.)

The hamster in the picture isn't Thurber, by the way, though it does look a lot like him -- I just found the image on flickr. Can't post any pix or videos of Thurber yet, as my main camera these days is my cellphone, and Nokia, in its infinite wisdom, has chosen NOT to include a USB cord or any sort of way for me to connect it to my PC with its packaging. It has to be bought separately. And it's not cheap. Bastards.
"I started musing philosophically about how much there was to learn from Billy's simple life. All he did was eat, sleep, run in his wheel, and amass a pile of worthless seeds. Yet that was all it took to make him happy. If only my own life could be like that, I said to myself. Then I realized... hey, my own life IS like that. It doesn't do to think deep thoughts about hamsters." ~ from the excellent Hamster Tales

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

What to Do with $16,999.95

The Levitating Hover Scooter. I want one.

It's "a miniature flying saucer with handlebars." The hover scooter "provides an unprecedented experience in personal transportation, levitating inches above the ground and speeding a single rider across level land on a cushion of air... Learning to ride the scooter takes less than five minutes, and no previous skateboarding, surfing, snowboarding, or other experience is required... The hovering scooter deftly glides over level, solid ground such as concrete, asphalt, or well-groomed grass, free of debris, sand, stones, and other obstacles. It can even travel up minor inclines."

I want everyone in my barkada to get one too. Then we'll find a wide open space and play Hover Scooter Ultimate Frisbee.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Mekanda Robo: TRY ATTACK!!

I love giant robot cartoon opening themes. And even though I used to hate giant robot cartoon closing themes as a kid, I grew to love them too. That is pretty much the extent of my maturation process. Anyway, I was running searches on all those giant robots of my youth ("Giant Robots of My Youth" -- what a great title for something. I call dibs), and I found this, which I wish to share with you. It is a thing of beauty. It is the Mekanda Robo opening sequence.

Mekanda Robo was one of those B-list robots that never achieved the popularity here that, say, Voltes V or Mazinger Z or even Daimos did. But man, check out that opener. First of all, the song is insanely catchy, and gloriously silly: "Mekanda Mekanda Mekanda Robo! TRY ATTACK!!" It gets even better during the volt-in sequence: "Mekanda ONE! Mekanda TWO! Mekanda THREEE!!" Thrilling!

And DUDE. The ASS-KICKING. Mekanda Robo will FUCK YOUR SHIT UP. Did you see what he did to that first monster? First he tears out its guts using his spiked shields, and then he slams the shield-spikes together on the monster's head and then he tears him in half with the blade-edges of his twin shields. Fuuuuuccckk.

The second opponent -- some stupid-looking piece of crap with antlers -- gets it worse, if that's even possible. First it gets the back of its head torn open by a kick -- a kick so lightly tossed off that it oozes contempt -- and then, when it tries to fight back using its ultimate technique (spinning like a saw blade), Mekanda just flash-fries it in mid-air with his chest flame throwers. Chest. Flame. Throwers. And then finishes it off by doing a cute little flip and launching a missile from his foot. A missile shaped like a shark. Holy crap. And then KABOOOM, that's all she wrote.

Mekanda Robo. Just one of the many reasons why I'm so well-adjusted today.