Sunday, June 27, 2010

Perth Supanova 2010 to infinity.

"Saturday. Sci fi convention."

As innocent as Ash's text was, the weekend-defining undertones it held could not be questioned. I'd never been to Supanova before and I had no idea what to expect besides a high concentration of nerd and cosplay in one place, which is an equation I have no trouble getting down with. The satisfaction I gained from the prospect of actually attending a sci-fi convention only grew stronger when I mentioned it to people that wouldn't dare set foot inside a Gametraders, let alone a convention full of costumes and hardcore anime experts. It seems as though regardless of how much the internet and video games and technology in general run everyone's lives, the general public (or 'norms' as they're now referred to) are still afraid to accept that unless you're in a varsity jacket and a soft top jeep with Maroon 5 on full blast, it's no longer kosher to persecute someone because their general interests differ from yours or because they happen to enjoy dressing up as Japanese schoolgirls with ridiculously large swords once a year.

Doesn't matter, I went and they didn't so I win by default.

I got there a little later than the group I was meeting. I put this down to the debaucherous evening prior and an extended mini-ring dunk session that went longer than extended. That, and Transperth. Of course on the one day of the year I actually need to be somewhere on time the fucking trains aren't running. The replacement bus was useless, the driver had no idea where he was going and the only reason I ended up remotely close to the Claremont showgrounds was an old lady sat next to the driver who happened to know Perth's entire geography street for street. Everyone on the bus was yelling at her and disagreeing with her directions but she just sat there like a trooper, channeling her inner google maps and simultaneously shutting down the ignorant passengers with her extra-terrestrial knowledge of the Western Suburbs. She actually started glowing at one stage, which got me even more excited.

After an inconveniently long walk I entered the showgrounds and was immediately greeted by a very convincing Mario, Luigi and Princess Peach. They were just walking around like whatever, carrying showbags and chatting quietly amongst themselves. I imagine they were discussing the benefits of flower power and how much of a jerk Bowser is when he's drunk. As I ventured deeper into the grounds things became even more surreal. The effort these people had gone to with their costumes was admirable and envy-inducing. I seriously can't describe how entertaining it is to see all your favourite cartoon, video game and film characters all just hanging out smoking cigarettes and acting out epic battles with inflatable swords. So much better than walking through the city and seeing all your favorite cartoon, video game and film characters all just hanging out smoking cigarettes and acting out epic battles with inflatable swords.

I saw my friend William in the smoking section and he informed me of the $25 entry fee and the pointlessness of parting with said fee considering my late arrival. William's a resourceful fellow though and managed to fashion a brand new media pass out of an old media pass and a little teamwork. As soon as we entered we had to go straight to the cosplay finals because that's where everyone else was. With this weekend being our collective first or second supanova experiences I expected the group to be sitting cautiously in the middle-back rows. That way as you become a more recognized member of the cosplay scene you can move a few rows forward every year. I was wrong. William escorted me to the very front row where Ash, Benny, Eliott and Tim were all sat on the floor, completely mesmerized by the dedication of the finalists on stage. We finally realized the meaning of life and went to heaven at the same time.

Even more mesmerizing though, was the zany and equally charming MC for the proceedings. He was a short guy with the most epic sideburns I have ever seen. Considering the fact I was at a sci-fi convention, the sideburn competition was stiff and this particular MC's cheek warmers were probably the reason he got the job. He was wearing a totally sweet purple blazer and some skate shoes as well, which perfectly accompanied the aspiring comedian/common forum moderator vibe he was laying down. Armed with the words 'awesome' and 'great', he was a capable host and had all of us rolling in the aisles with his unique mix of inside jokes and anime knowledge. He even got some flowers from a couple of swedish maids. At the end of the ceremony we all agreed that he deserved them.

Afterwards we were free to roam the grounds and checked out a few stalls before squeezing into Ash's car (I pretended it was his mum's minivan for effect) and making our way home, being sure to make as many references to pop culture as possible whilst planning our costumes for next year. So impressed by Supanova 2010 I was, that I made a return trip the following day for a second dose of euphoria. The second day was even better than the first (not possible, I know). Ash had taken a similar initiative and I located him and Sean (who was possibly more blown away by the convention than all of us put together, he was actually convulsing at one stage) who were both standing in line to see the master of human produced sound effects, Michael Winslow. I don't even want to talk about how amazing that was. I will say he reproduced the sound for an the entire Star Wars episode IV tie-fighter attack scene using only his voice box and a fine grasp of topical comedy. He did so much other amazing stuff but you weren't there so I'm not going to tell you what they were. I brought my other friends Tim, Matt and Blake to the second day as well, they fainted 14 times each which was understandable.

With an Eliza Dushku sighting towards the end and a few more gasps at even more incredible costumes, we were spent. I had officially reached nerdgasm. To balance the weekend out we went skateboarding at the nearby Claremont park and our status as life all-rounders was re-instated. Supanova is now my new favorite place in the world. The only time I've ever felt so surrounded by genius and universal culture is any time I play video games, which is great because that's a huge part of the Supanova aesthetic. There were no businessmen there, no bus drivers, no football players and only a few babies, but they were in costume as well so I gave them a pass. If any of you have an ounce of interest in pop culture and awesomeness, I suggest you book the next Supanova weekend off. Single men would especially be encouraged to attend on the strength of the girls in attendance, most of whom are dressed as scantily clad comic book characters ftw. There's seriously something there for everyone at Supanova, granted you aren't a businessman, a bus driver or a football player.



*All photos courtesy of Ash and his newly formed cosplay photography company, CosVision.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Mein skabf.

First 30 seconds of the first game, the rock is dished out to a wild-card point guard and I'm faced with the menial task of keeping him and the ball on the outskirts of our heavily guarded tarmac real estate. I'd been watching him warm-up. He was small, wearing a beanie cap and Asian. Anyone that has ever played basketball knows that small Asian players are extremely diligent when it comes to on-court intimidation techniques. Crossovers, pump fakes and spins are used in excess as a means of lulling their defense into a false sense of athletic inability so they can safely drive, only to get swatted or pass the ball to a more vertically-abled player.

I knew what he was up to, so I applied the white-on-rice defense in order to counter his technique. He went left, I went left, he went right, I pre-determined a fake and went left again. He wasn't expecting this and drove straight into my left leg. It was an odd manuevre that saw both of us lose our respective footing and my right knee coming into direct contact with the gritty concrete court with the same motion of a hammer missing a nail. The scores for the game may have been tied, but the play-off between my knee and the concrete stood at one nil in favor of the concrete. Almost instantaneously, what seemed like litres of blood began making it's way from the cut to my fresh white socks. My primary concern was no longer disinfecting the cut, but saving those fresh whites by any means necessary. I blood-ruled to the sidelines and fashioned a temporary bandage out of the seam of my polyester-mesh shorts and little else.

Over the coming weeks the wound slowly healed itself as platelets and blood cells weaved a rustic brown shield over the cut. The depth of the cut ranged between 'probably need stitches' to 'can't be bothered getting stitches' so this particular clot took longer than usual to reach it's defensive peak, which was a new experience for me considering I generally heal quicker than most (I'm no medical expert but I think it's scientific title is 'Wolverine Syndrome' and I've had it since birth). As this wondrous, man-made tapestry manifested below my right knee i came to appreciate the cut as it blossomed into a beautiful, sizeable scab. I'd had plenty of scabs before but due to the circumstances and the uncertainty of how long we'd have together it became somewhat of an extension of my leg, and I came to love it like I would any of my other limbs.

The scab and I did everything together. We ate, played video games, slept and partied together, his presence constantly reinstated by the sharp pain he'd produce any time I knelt on him or moved my right leg in general. Love hurts and I was willing to suffer if only to prolong the healing process and subsequently, our time together. I even introduced him to my girlfriend and my most esteemed peers as a sign of respect and to show him that he was more important to me than every scab before him. I know he felt the same by the way he'd tickle my knee. The temptation to pick, play with or scratch never crossed my mind and not once did I cover him with any pharmaceutical bandaging or disinfectants. I was proud of my scab and how well I was taking care of him.

Everything changed this morning though. I'd just collected my routine morning coffee from the cafe around the corner and was commandeering my skateboard through the usually smooth back alleys of my route to the train station when an unfamiliar entity came into contact with my front wheels. Some genius had left a hose running across a driveway DIRECTLY AFTER A SPEED BUMP. It was as if someone had been watching my journey for weeks and found the most strategically beneficial location for a trap and was possibly watching from a nearby gum tree, cackling to themselves as the urethane supporting my person came to an unplanned stop. Normally, any other hindrance could be avoided with a quick step off the board but this time was extra special, being a Monday morning and all. As I was launched from my vehicle, flashbacks of my scab's short life played through my mind in HD and for about two seconds, I was at peace with the circumstances currently surrounding me. I hit the ground knee first, slid for half a metre and I didn't even consider the fact that i'd just paid for a coffee which was now a 3/4 tarmachiatto. My focus immediately shifted to a sharp pain below my right knee, the exact spot where an old friend once resided. The familiar feeling of cold blood crawling down my shin confirmed what I feared most.

The scab was gone. My knee was fucked again.

It hurt me to know that something i had cared for so meticulously over such a long period could be destroyed in a matter of seconds through the careless actions of another. It was like my first Tamagotchi. I fed it, played with it and woke up at the most ungodly of hours to clean up it's accidents for several months. All it took was one sleepover and I had to come home the next morning to a digital devastation that no 10 year old should ever have to endure. This morning was no different. As I sat on the train in my blood stained jeans i came to the realization that life is not a right, it's a sacred privilege. I vowed to live life to the fullest from that point on, it's what he would've wanted.

While the sun had set on one scab, a new scab would soon appear under a new dawn. As I mourned a brief smile touched my face and i remembered that while scabs may come and go, a scar lasts forever and whenever i gaze down to my right knee, I'll always be reminded of that one time I totally owned an Asian point guard.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

One tagline.

Well, everything seems to be in order here. It's not an album cover, which isn't surprising since 50 cent the rapper no longer exists and Curtis Jackson the IMDB accredited has taken his place. He's pulling his 'grey steel' face, an oral contortion that has become synonymous with the 50 Cent brand and he's within close proximity to splatters of blood, which is another recurring theme for anything associated with his image. Upon first glance, one would be forgiven for reaching the conclusion that a healthy level of ignorance has been maintained on this advertisement and 50's position as a certified gangster has once again been solidified.

What can't be forgiven though is the outlandish tagline for the movie in question. In case you missed it:
A tagline's job is to give the potential viewer a brief synopsis of the film being advertised, whilst leaving enough to the imagination to entice them into paying a fare to view it. For example, Ridley Scott's 1979 masterpiece Alien adopted the now iconic "In space, no one can hear you scream" tagline. This suggests that the film takes place in outer space and the possibility that an other-worldy presence is preventing whoever it is in outer space from doing whatever it is they want to do in outer space. If i was around in 1979 i would've been convinced to see Alien if only to discover exactly what this presence was and how the human protagonists dealt with it. Having since viewed Alien on several occasions i can say (without any film student snobbery) that the tagline did a damn good job enticing me to pay a fare to view it. Not that i paid for it, i watched it a my friend's house pretty much every time i went there.

Then there's the inevitable sequel Aliens and it's equally effective tagline "This time, it's war". We've seen what happened in the original and now that the protagonist is aware of the Aliens and their characteristics, they are going to do battle with them on more equal terms than in the first film. Again, simple, effective and with the placement of the words 'time' and 'war' comes a responsibility to continue following the story in order to gain some closure along with the protagonist and her crew of stereotypical soldiers.

The tagline 'one gun, many lives lost' is as ludicrous as it is misleading, ticking all the boxes for a box office flop regardless of it's all star cast (Curtis Jackson and Val Kilmer). I racked my brain for potential metaphors and hidden meanings within the blurb and after about 30 seconds i came to one conclusion. This movie is about 50 Cent killing ALOT of people, with one gun. This is where it gets even more confusing.

Now, i suck at math and i hold an immense, deep-seeded hatred for anyone that is good at math. The way i see it, we don't speak in numbers, so why the hell should i learn about them? It would appear as though Curtis Jackson has applied a similar thought process to this poster. For those of you playing at home, the tagline discusses the prospect of one gun and an insurmountable number of lives lost, which is fair enough. What isn't discussed is the number of guns Curtis himself is holding in the photo, namely, two. Seeing as this is the only image we can associate with the movie and tagline in question it appears as though someone has made a crucial error in relation to not only the tagline, but the name of the movie as well. 'Guns' clearly would have been the more effective title to run with as the demographic this movie is clearly aimed at would definitely appreciate multiple guns over a single, less gun with a predetermined amount of ammunition. Keeping in mind that i suck at math, the following equation springs to mind:

Amount of lives lost ≠ Amount of guns.

However, being the marketing genius that Curtis Jackson is, in some twisted, logic-bending fashion, he's convinced me to go and see Gun when it comes out in 2011. I simply must see how this possibility of more than one gun will affect the plot and it's surrounding characters. Yes, the movie is called Gun and the tagline leads me to believe that the number of guns on screen will be limited to one at a time but as previously mentioned, the number of guns Curtis is cradling and his suggestive facial expression could convince me yet. Gun is set for release in 2011 and stars Val Kilmer.

Tagline suggestions for future Gun spin-offs and sequels:

* In space, nobody can hear you gun.
* In Vietnam the Gun doesn't blow, it guns.
* There is nothing in the dark that isn't there in the light, except Gun.
* You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll gun.
* An adventure 65 million guns in the making.
* So many guns, so little time.
* Everyone has one special gun.
* Not every gun is a blessing.
* Nothing on Earth could gun between them.
* He is afraid, he is alone, he is three million guns from home.

Bonus points for anyone that can name every film i've blatantly ripped off here.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Chokito says bro bro bro.

I've always liked Chokito brand chocolate bars, i've never had a bad one. They're like the more attractive but still ugly as sin second-cousin of the unsightly Picnic brand chocolate bar, which i also like. Plus, they're pretty underground as well. Sometimes when i eat Chokitos my friends are like "WTF are you eating man?" and i'm all "duh, it's a chokito" and then they have a bite and they're like "cool :)". They actually smile after tasting it, Chokitos are just that good. However, i never see them eating them again after that. Whenever we're in the chocolate isle at the supermarket or the milk bar they always grab something lame and mainstream like MARS or Summer Roll. Who eats a Summer Roll in 2010? Oh that's right, retired dairy farmers and pregnant women.

I think people don't get down with Chokito because they don't see it advertised enough. Name the last advertising campaign for Chokito. Exactly, you can't, and even if you can, you're a nerd and should probably lay off the Chokitos, nerd. It really grinds my gears when something awesome (namely, Chokitos) isn't getting exposure because people make me feel like a stain for enjoying it when in reality, Chokitos are better than a-lot of people i know and they can't even talk.

So what would chokito say if it could talk? It would say NO NO NO to things that apparently ruin other things. I could be wrong, but i think this is a clever play on words pertaining to a popular Amy Winehouse song in which she disagrees with some people's stance on her drug dependence and the consideration of rehabilitation. Which is a shame because she's now a crack whore.

But if there's anything Chokito hates more than rehab, it's Sunday drivers. Sunday drivers on a Monday, when it isn't Sunday. I was on the train this morning when i saw the ad so i couldn't relate but i'm sure there's nothing more frustrating and mainstream then people driving on a Monday with golf clubs in their boot or even worse, doing the speed limit. I don't really understand this concept. There's normally heaps of traffic on a Monday morning so aren't we all technically Sunday drivers on a Monday? Doesn't matter, this angers Chokito. Chokito is punctual and Chokito doesn't play golf like all those other Sunday drivers.

Err. If you're sick on a sickie, isn't that why you took the sickie? Or is this referring to all those times you've booked a sickie a week in advance and then coincidentally fallen ill on that actual day? What, like a holiday? Don't you book a holiday in advance and a sickie on the day? If I called my boss and said i was going to have a sick day before i was actually sick i'd get handed a slip of the pink nature. Chokito sure is a weird guy. The chances of falling sick on a spontaneous sickie are pretty slim, but Chokito says NO NO NO just in case.

Have you ever been at a party and there's some accountant walking around? I HATE THAT AS WELL CHOKITO! They just walk around like they own the place, those accountants. Don't even ask them what they do for a job, they'll probably tell you that they're an accountant and it'll totally break the crazy vibe of the party in progress. I know when I send invites out for a party i specifically request NO ACCOUNTANTS. There's nothing worse than rocking up to a party only to find that there's someone there that works for an accounting firm or even worse, a firm in general.

Texting is for queers. If you're absolutely trashed at 3AM in the morning, you don't text your ex. You call that bitch and make sure they can't ignore you. Chokito likes it's booty calls compliant and semi-conscious. If your ex isn't in bed at 3AM and is out and about, the phone call is a great means to make sure they feel guilty and awkward while they try to do other things, like getting on with their life without you calling them at 3AM for the most forgettable sexual endeavor since the last time you had sex before 3AM, which was never.

I'm a little torn when it comes to this particular campaign. On one hand, it's great to see an underrated chocolate getting some much needed recognition, but on the other hand, Chokito's attitude seems to be a little askew. I always pictured Chokito as a Chuck Farley kind of character. Big, jolly and a great guy to have at a party because he doesn't just associate with the people he likes, but spreads himself around and gives everyone a bit of face time. He wouldn't overstay his welcome either, making sure he's not the first person to leave and not the last either, sort of bidding farewell just before the closest friends of the hosts.

This Chokito sounds like a drunk, leadfoot jerk with an unjustified disdain for accountants and an inconvenient longing for ex-partners at preposterous hours of the morning. Seriously guys, Chokitos are actually great, please buy them. Biting into one is like giving birth to your own tastebuds without having to wait 9 months or even copulate. The crunchy rice soldiers under the chocolate shell will let you pass with minimal fuss and once your teeth come to rest on the soft caramel fudge pillow, all the oil spills and celebrity deaths in the world won't be able to bring you down.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

C@ts.

Sony, the internationally admired technology powerhouse and manufacturer of all things handy (aside from the PS3) have just announced their latest time-wasting innovation, Cat@Log. Essentially Twtter for cats, Cat@Log simultaneously keeps you informed of your cats every move and infuriates me to the point of no return.

For starters, cats are useless. I've already discussed and proven this fact in several other posts but seeing as cat owners are the most denial-driven sub-humans on the planet i'll reiterate once again. Cats have no place in modern society, they contribute in no way to our economy, well-being or environment and their little faces with their sharp, unsatisfied features are a constant reminder of their incapacity to promote anything but evil tendencies. Yet, as useless as cats are, they stroll around like they own whichever place they are strolling around in. Their owners are slaves, brainwashed by a secreted psychoactive hallucinogen known as 'asshole'. 'Asshole' is stored in little sacs beneath the cats fur coat and is released by the stroking motion known as 'petting' or 'being a gay'. Once the hallucinogen is released, it is known to cause the following:

* A false sense of self worth.
* A false sense of ownership over the cat.
* Love under false pretenses.
* Nausea.

Thankfully, I was born with a natural allergy (or gift) that prevents me from being affected by this toxin and should a cat ever enter my personal space, an outburst of small, localized sneezes will let it know that i'm not one to be brainwashed so easily. I'm not allergic to cats, cats are allergic to me, which is why Sony's proposal is a cause for concern. Before now, a cats only form of communication was that hissing noise they always make when you spray water at them. If this innovation takes off, the cats will be given access to an entirely new means of control over their owner and will be able to reach a wider audience as their movements are inevitably discussed over the internet and hip Whiskers ad campaigns. Who the fuck wants to know what a cat is doing anyway?

Oh wow @TabbySlash. You were a manipulative, sadistic bitch for a week straight? Who would've thought a cat could be so evil?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pencil Case.

Fired for being too hot.

I had no idea what they were talking about. Did this Debrahlee Lorenzana have a temperature problem? Was she emanating a level of body heat so unbearable to her colleagues that she was excused from her duties as an entry-level Citibank employee? Better look to the professionals.

Dictionary.com states:

Hot - Adjective
1. having or giving off heat; having a high temperature: a hot fire; hot coffee.
2. having or causing a sensation of great bodily heat; attended with or producing such a sensation: He was hot with fever.
3. creating a burning sensation, as on the skin or in the throat: This ointment is hot, so apply it sparingly.
4. sharply peppery or pungent: Is this mustard hot?

That couldn't be it. From the photos I'd seen so far, Debrahlee doesn't look like she has the flu, her throat doesn't appear to show any signs of strain or burning and for the most part, she doesn't look sharply peppery or pungent. It was time to dig deeper. I remembered that a-lot of news websites these days like to use clever puns and common slang to appeal to a wider audience, so I directed my research to a more urban form of dictionary to find out what the fuss was all about and why this piece of news was plastered all over the front page of every news website on an international scale.

Urbandictionary.com states:

Hot - Adjective
1. someone thats EXTREMEMLY (sic) good looking but not like (sic) cute, more like (sic) sexy. when they walk by u (sic) turn ure (sic) head and wish u (sic) had a pause button or something.
2. something that is in some way attractive

Of course! Debrahlee wasn't fired because of her temperature or unbearable body heat! She was too attractive! This is way more interesting. I don't know how anyone could strive to work in a bank to begin with (all the numbers and monitors would make me ever so sleepy), let alone a bank where there is a girl that is way too attractive for you or your colleagues to handle! Imagine how hard and job threatening that would be.

Jim: Hey Tom, how'd you go with that McNamara finance?

*Debrahlee sits at her desk, typing*

Tom: Oh, hey Jim! Yeah, still working on it. Carvalho's got my balls in a vice grip, he wants it done by the weekend. Might have to cancel golf again!

*Debrahlee sits at her desk, typing*

Carvalho: Hey, Tom, Jim. Is it lunch time?

Tom and Jim: No sir.

Carvalho: Then why the fuck are you standing around like it is? Shouldn't you be sorting that McNamara file out Tom?

Tom and Jim: Sorry boss.

*Debrahlee stands up to use the fax machine*

Carvalho: Right, you're both fired.

Tom: I said I'd have the file done by the weekend boss!

Carvalho: You're not fired for slacking off. Look at how hot Debrahlee looks right now in that pencil skirt and turtle neck top with matching heels. There's no way either of you are going to get anything done around here so I'm going to have to let you go.

*Debrahlee sits back down, knowing her own job is now at risk*

It's pretty amazing that someone can get fired from a bank for being too attractive. What's more amazing though is the fact that Debrahlee herself is claiming that is the sole reason for her termination, not the fact that she is incompetent, which is Citiblank's own claim. This could really set a new standard for females and job security the world over.

"Oh yeah, they said I single-handedly sent the company bankrupt and that i was the most unprofessional secretary in the history of the company. It's all bullshit though, I know it's because I was too hot for them. They can't handle this body and they know it. I'm thinking about sueing."

Here's some photos of Deb in a work situation. Where the photos came from I have no idea, but I can only assume they're an accurate portrayal of an average work day for her:

So, what was Deb's job description? Director of posing with book and glass of water? Head of the department for leaning provocatively over files? Personally, I think Deb's flattering herself with these claims against Citibank. Anyone that poses for a photoshoot in an office to back up her claims of being fired from a bank for being too hot is clearly trying to break into modeling, a guaranteed RALPH photo-shoot or a wild card entry to "I'm a celebrity, get me out of there!".

"Man, did you see that girl over there? Dude, she's like a combination of J.Lo curves meets Jessica Simpson rack meets Audrey Hepburn elegance. She's so hot she couldn't even hold a job at Citibank!"

HOT UPDATE!
It looks as though not even the monolithic likes of Google can deny the temperature-related attractiveness this woman is oozing right now. Fired for being too spicy? Oh, I think so!