A fantastic piece of Flash animation those kids made. Besides having a great story, they totally nailed both the usual flash-type animation (the robots) but also note all the sparks, smoke, and dripping tar. That’s all traditional animation. Also note all those clouds of transparent symbols. Subtle and very tasty.
Last week, an aunt of Ron died of cancer. She had only been diagnosed some 12 days before dying, and the events left him and his family shaken.
Because of this, he Rob and I spoke at length about what it means to lose a family member, how unprepared one feels to cope with it, and how even long afterwards one can never forget.
Here is us rehearsing Roberts song Calloused Hands, which he wrote for his dad shortly before his death.
Just for good measure, here is another take of Geraldine, the worlds greatest mommy.
And just for the heck of it, here is me with Robert on drums doing Will the Circle. Its not how we do it live, but in rehearsal we do all sorts of stuff, most of which you would rather not hear
And you can write me.
We gots a new place. We will be moving in anytime now.
Me and Rob and Ron play some music, we record it sometimes.
We played this song, Geraldine, last night at a party and everyone got real quite and listened.
But here is an earlier recording from a rehearsal. here
It is a song that I kind of choke up every time we play. I think it is just about the sweetest song anyone ever wrote to his mom.
Here is the original from Chuck. here
I have been wanting to do it for a while, so stay tuned for a post or two about composition in visual arts.
Above I embedded an image of the Raft of the Medusa, a gigantic painting in the Loo. If it does not show up, well, that was the image. Look it up yourself.
Last friday afternoon on the way home from flat hunting, I ran into my old friend and Rudi-Leni neighbor, Kazuya, a handsome Japanese fellow and longtime expat.
He and I share a cultural frustration. We both speak German fluently, but still with some degree of an accent. I would say his foreign accent a good bit stronger than mine, seeing as his native tongue is much more distant to German than that of mine. Nonetheless, his vocab and understanding is just as good as mine. Anyway, it happens occasionally that when dealing with strangers, they will just switch to English. Me, I get pissed when this happens, because I jump to the conclusion that I am being patronized. For him, he finds it hilarious, because like many Japanese, he doesn’t speak any English at all.
He does however speak Spanish very well. This because he lived a few years in Mexico before coming to Germany. He also has two cute little girls from an earlier relationship with a German woman. They look Japanese as the day is long, but speak Saxon like native speakers, which they in fact, are.
He tells me that he visited Japan this year, and that was the very first time in twelve years. I can only guess what a culture shock that was. I certainly get one everytime I visit the ever-expanding parking lot I call home. And even after a long stretch in France, returning to Germany is a culture shock enough.
We walked along Kamenzerstr while catching up and I commented on the new Netto supermarket on the street. I was glad it had opened because it would be just round the corner from my new place. And the buildings look majorly renovated, I can’t even remember how they used to look, I said.
–Because they weren’t there, he said. It used to be a sandy vacant lot. Then I remembered the Big Fight. It had been vacant since the end of WWII, the houses standing there destroyed by stray bombs. Then, a few years back, people were saying “let’s put in a parking garage”. Others went, how about “no”. How about a park? A playground? An outdoor stage, a beergarten, even.
People got involved. I recall seeing the picture of an exgirlfriend in a magazine, one of the ringleaders of the resistance. They was even a backlash movement, one to make the entire Outer Neustadt into a pedestrian zone.
It was a valiant fight, but in the end they built a Netto. And, says Kazuya, all the people who protested go shopping there now. I guess I will too.
Now that I look back for attribution, I can’t recall if it was Ron himself, or the baritoned MissouRasta Jesse who used the onomatompoeia to describe the phenomenon, but fitting it was indeed.
As if on cue, several rabbits come popping up to the ground floor to check things out. As many as seven at a time. They just go ploop, ploop, ploop up the top of the skywalk. And then, what I like to do is pretend I am some kind of post modern Snow White. You four rabbits do the dishes. And you two take these empty beer bottles back for the deposit.
In reality, though, rabbits are terrible at housechores. Even the most simple tasks. And also unlike the woodland friendlies in the Disney films, they lack any voyeuristic curiousity about your lovelife. They can’t even feign interest to be polite.
What they do like to do when upstairs is mostly two things.
One is to use the extra space for spontaneous rounds of Rabbit Grabass. The rules are unclear, but it involves lots of running and sharp turns on the rugs, cool spinouts on the parquet, and lots of spastic jumps for joy (binkies, I hear they are called).
The second is to see if ole Twolegs has some leafy greens to doal out. G.R.E.A.M. They love the tops of carrots more than the root itself. And a real frickin treat is the green leaves of kohlrabi. “It’s like Gold,” said Ron on a “dumpster diving” mission.
Ron and his sense of drama. Before he left, he showed me the finer points of rabbit grocery shopping. Because there are 9 buns, 2 bunches of carrots, plus a broccoli are bought daily, and given out throughout the day. This leaves us with a lot of excess orange, and not enough greens for the little ones, who seem to like it the most.
So then there is a wastebasket nearby, where shoppers can strip off the excess greenage from their veggies. Some people do this for space, but mostly I suspect some people are just dumb and they think it will make their veggies cheaper. Most veggies in question are sold by unit, not weight. So you can fish out those parts and take them with you, no questions asked. That was what Ron Referred to as dumpster diving.