simpsons

The Void in Your Soul is Your Lack of Nakatomi Inc

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I like staged houses. I really do. I like original bright art on white walls, clean lines, and a void of family photos. I like flow and bursts. Bare and pops. Simplicity and vibrancy. I like darkness turned to light. Which is why I love Nakatomi Inc.

I’m not one for plugs, but  holding back on that which is awesome is also not my style. Artist Tim Doyle takes the most memorable scenes of movies, shows, the pieces that all hit us – and not necessarily in a reminiscent way – and makes beauty where there’s bloodshed, calm silence and awe where there’s chaos. I personally have a number of his works from his Wes Anderson series. In my bathroom, a beautiful barefoot woman ties up her hair prior to cleaning another motel room (Bottle Rocket) and in my living room a well traveled suitcase is in the hand of an unseen man boarding a train (Darjeeling Limited). The prints are amazing, iconic, and beautiful pops of color in my otherwise drab living space. And the last thing any viewer ever thinks they’re admiring is a movie poster. They stand there staring, it can’t be helped, seeing something creative and really gorgeous, but also attempting to rack their brains on why they feel connected to the prints. On the very rare occasion that people recognize a print’s inspiration, they seem even that more attached to it.

In Doyle’s work I get to unabashedly feed my geek soul with scenes of my favorite stories in a very unique way, balancing darkness with bold colors, sometimes turning scenes of horror into love, or the mundane into beauty. There are scenes our minds don’t want to visualize again, but Doyle manages to capture these points and depict them in such away that soothes and states that it’s not only okay to stare, you want to stare. But his works go beyond that. Doyle’s prints give new life to a renewed Pop movement for a new generation of art lovers. His works are not only visually stunning, but imaginative and inventive without being hokey or analogous to any other artist.

Please excuse the poor lighting in these photos.

The best way to check out Tim’s work is to check out his websites, Nakatomi Inc. If you’re lucky enough to live in the San Francisco area, you can catch Unreal Estate, a Tim Doyle solo show, at Spoke Art. I’ve known about this upcoming show for a while, but at work yesterday I had a coworker run up to me, Macbook in hand, to show me something “awesome” he found online. He revealed an image of a building near cooling towers, it may be early dawn or a dirty night, an unwelcoming, dirty parking lot, a poor part of town that is cold, but not unattractive in its honesty and industrialism. And I immediately recognized it as Tim Doyle’s piece of the Kwik E Mart. From the Simpsons.

You may have to know it to get it, but you don’t have to know it to appreciate it.

I don’t watch Breaking Bad, but there are a few prints Doyle has done of the show that I can’t imagine I’ll live without for much longer.

Along with the Simpsons print, the Spoke Art show in San Francisco will also feature works depicting locations from The Sopranos, Seinfeld, Sesame Street, Arrested Development, and more.

I wish I could say something bad about some aspect of Doyle’s work, I really do, just to make this more of a professional review than whatever this is (merely ‘gushing over great’? I don’t know). And maybe that is the bad part: enjoying Doyle’s work means beginning a collection, because you can’t stop yourself. It means opening your eyes to further artists that you undoubtedly get sucked into enjoying as well. And before you know it, you’re deciding whether to pay money to see a movie, or just saving your cash, waiting in hope that Doyle will capture it in a print down the road.

I will not be attending the San Francisco art show as I live in Austin. I will, however, be spending my weekend obtaining a new frame and hanging the new print I purchased from Nakatomi Inc yesterday. And I can’t wait.

Thems Special Cats

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I used to volunteer one day a week in a Veterinary Clinic. I did this for a number of reasons, the primary one being that I really loved who I worked with. The people there are wonderful. Pet owners, however, can be a breed all their own.

It was a very small veterinary clinic. There was one doctor and only two exam rooms. We were basically an ENT for dogs and cats. We would do minor surgery, but no emergencies. We were just your primary care physician for your puppy or feline, appointments only, rigid schedule due to our size, but always happily refereed and recommended doctors for emergencies. We would always squeeze unscheduled people in whenever we could, but it is simply not always possible. As far as clientele goes, we handled anyone in Austin and anyone willing to drive to us…and there are a lot of eccentric people in the surrounding hill country. Very unique and I guess peculiar would be the nice way of putting it. Don’t forget: a lot of horror flicks take place out here.

We all have dealt with odd people in our daily lives, we all have been those “crazies” to someone else at some point. It’s what makes life interesting. And this encounter was interesting.

On this morning, as I organized the charts for the full list of appointments we had that day, a car pulled into our lot. The driver of the car was a woman dressed in a uniform, a state or city worker, with a badge on her chest that shone in the sun when she got out of her new model Nissan. She went over to the passenger side and removed from the car a lumpy and squirming pillow case. She strode in our door, sack in hand, and I greeted her warmly, as I do all our patients and their owners.

Let me just note here that cat carries are always preferable. That being said, it is not uncommon for people to transport their cats in pillow cases. I’m not kidding.

She grunted at my hello and sat down. I began to ask what we could help her with this fine morning and for her name so I could check her off the appointments list. Her answers were…well, it was as though she knew what she wanted, wanted it done, and didn’t want to deal with logic. In fact, it seemed even paying attention to anything was out of the question.

I asked what she needed, she responded with something about crazy drivers. I asked if we could help her pet in the pillow case, and she was upset with the weather and angry at metal. I don’t know if she meant technology or cars or the genre of music.

My outward queries of her needs became inner queries of wonder: just how did she get on this planet? It seemed she was trying to get care for her cat in the most confusing and angry way. She was very animated when she spoke, doing so with sudden, sharp hands gestures, arms swinging with each sentence. This wouldn’t have bothered me normally, accept in one of her hands she grasped the pillow case containing her cat, who was very obviously not enjoying its morning.

Photo credit unknown. Not me, that’s for sure.

I’m no doctor, but after a few minutes with Unknown Lady #1 of the day, I felt confident to make a diagnosis: Bull Goose Looney. Not mentally handicapped mind you, just missing some marbles. Normally, I wouldn’t jump to make that call; you never know what someone is going through. I promise you, I am normally very kind and patient when I’m in the office, as much as I dislike the human race.

This woman, however, was mean. She was nuts, angry, and none too bright. A deadly combination. ‘Deadly’ as in her existence in common society causes others to kill. I very politely let her know there might be a wait for the doctor, but we would try to see her cat, and I attempted to keep her as calm as possible. I offered to put her cat in the exam room so it could stretch it’s legs and calm down before the exam, but she refused. In fact, in order to even get her to acknowledge her own pet, I had to basically pressure her for answers, and those only came after over ten minutes of angry rants and in short bursts of sentences.

I was trying to be nice and helpful, but I was getting more concerned for her cat with each passing moment.

“You have your cat with you it seems. And it doesn’t seem that you have an appointment. Does your cat need vaccinations?” I asked slowly and clearly.

“Nah! Needs shots. I had my cat’s shots done in Austin last year. I need ’em done agin.”

“Sure, we can do that! Did your cat receive those shots here last year? What’s your last name? I can look up his records.” I rose
to look through charts.

“I ain’t never been here before,” she answered.

“Oh, that’s no problem. We’ll just take your information as a new client. Please fill out the new client form on the counter. Where did you have the shots done last time?” I asked.

“Oh, I dunno. Somewheres in Austin. Y’all have ’em in the records.” She ignored my request for the form.

“So, we DO have the records? So your cat HAS seen our doctor before? Or did you have the records sent over from the previous vet? What’s your last name? And, if you’d like, I can help you fill out the new patient form.” I still had no answer on either a name for the woman or her cat.

“I haven’t been here before and I sureishell don’ know yer docteer!”She seemed to be getting annoyed and again ignored the new patient information request.

We looked at each other. I was blank and confused, but at least I was in good company. Let me just point out, that by this time my boss, the veterinarian, his assistant, and the vet tech were standing just out of sight of the client area in the hall listening, a swirl of confusion and entertainment playing on their faces.

I repeated, “Did you have the records sent to us from a previous vet of the vaccinations?”

“I don’t need vassinations, I need shots! I don’t need ‘er records neither, cause I got her shots done ’round in Austin. YOU – GOT – DEM RECORDS!” She was yelling now.

I had no idea what to do. I paused. I was not a cryer. If someone has the audacity to make you cry or come close to tears at the office they are horrible human beings and not worth the energy.

And…Stupid does this. It seeps in, infects the air, hovers heavily, thickly like a smelly fourth grader with awful hygiene and weird food for lunch. It hangs there, staring at you, waiting yet thoughtless, ignorant of it’s own irritating cycle.

You almost want to feel sorry.
Almost.

I forced my self to smile. And I maintained quiet and calm and spoke…very…very…very…slow…ly.
“Ma’am, if you haven’t been here before…

                   …and your cat hasn’t seen our Doctor…

                                              …and you haven’t had records sent over from another vet…

                                                                 …then there is absolutely no way that we have records for your pet.”

The woman was silent for a moment. After a bit her eyes changed, like suddenly she was figuring it all out. For about an eighth of a second I was thankful, I thought we could move forward and communicate. I almost sighed with relief.

Then the woman blinked. Something had clicked. Evil.

Out she spat her next topic, which still had nothing to do with her cat. “You’re a big girl. You gained weight since las’ time I were here.”

That was it.
At that point I had worked at the clinic barely a year and I could hear my coworkers snickering out of sight in the exam room hall. Our waiting area was filling with competent pet owners who actually had appointments. And I wasn’t about to hold them up any longer.

Screw reality. Reality isn’t a necessity. Let’s do crazy, bitch.

“Ma’am,” I sighed calmly, politely. “We can’t treat your cat.”

Suddenly, the prospect of no longer getting attention made her understand English. “But the sign say y’all do cats!”

“Yes, we do ‘do cats’. But those are special cats. We only treat THOSE cats,” I pressed, leaning forward as though I was sharing a secret with her.

“Oh…Thems like those SPECIAL cats?…” she asked.

(via idea-box)

She started to smile. Thems special cats. She was nodding like she was privy to a veterinarian insider tip, like she knew exactly what I meant. I didn’t fucking know what I meant. It seemed, however, to make her feel special that her cat was in a “special cat” vet office, like being there was AS GOOD as getting her cat the actual shots it needed, even though she was being turned down.

“Yeah. I’m sooooooo sorreee about that. Thought your cat had been here, but hasn’t, so can’t. So sorry! But you have a good day!”
I walked over to the door out of politeness in case she needed a hand leaving.

“Tha’s fine, darlin’. I gotta git to work any how. Somebody’s gotta drive that bus.” Magically and totally placated, she was smiling a far off smile, and left nodding without another word, just like that.

I wish I had asked her the bus route she drove just to avoid it. I should have asked her if she was going to drop her cat off at home or if it had to stay in a pillow case in her car all day. And I should have asked if she needed a recommendation for another vet clinic. But, after a frustrating and fruitless 20 minutes in which I couldn’t even get a name, other people waiting and getting annoyed as well, it was too important for my own sanity’s sake to get her out the door.

And to this day I have no idea what ‘thems special cats’ are, but I bet they’re awesome.
Like Thunder Cats.

A Little Pop-Me-Up for Your Day

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*People are just the worst: In an attempt to help a fellow traveler in distress, Gary Koelling allowed a man from Switzerland to check into a hotel using Koelling’s credit card. The free check-in wound up costing Koelling $41,000 or six nights at a ritzy New York City hotel, plus incidentals at just over $6,833 dollars a night. What does this teach us about helping our fellow man? Stick to reviewed and established charities, and when in trouble as a tourist, contact the local police department or embassy. Especially in New York.[Gawker]


*Speaking of horrible people, if you’re wondering what to get those hated ones on you list, look no further: Gifts for People You Hate is bound to have the perfect present for the people in your life you just can’t stand.

*Facebook bought Gowalla. What does this mean exactly? It means that if you enjoy using Gowalla you have less than a month to continue doing so before Facebook completely shuts it down. Someone might want to let Mark Zuckerburg that a little competition is healthy. [CNN Tech]

*In other news, delightful science has attributed smoking cigarettes to loss of nipples. You read that correctly. Apparently there has been a correlation between smoking and nipples falling off on women who have had their breasts lifted (though I assume it could happen to breast lifted men as well). Smoking is bad for you, people! When will we finally get that through our thick skulls?!  Though, maybe this is giving hope to those individuals with superfluous nips, such as Lily Allen, Chandler Bing, and Krusty the Clown. [The Chart]

*The Muppets are pure good. Like, good for your soul good. In their latest flick they put on a telethon to help others and, so often, helping others in need is the message they send out (with the exception of giving a stranger your credit card. Duh.). While many would find this message of hope and brotherly love heartwarming, those [insert any expletive here] at Fox Business “News” slammed the Muppet creators and writers for having an anti-capitalistic agenda. Of course. Which is why all dvd sales and movie tickets were non-profit based. And why the muppets weren’t completely portrayed as rich in the film. Of course, now those last two points are just flat-out lies, like what spews from the mouths of the “reporters” on Fox. And I recommend not reading the comments on this particular article. You’ll waste both energy and brain cells. [Blastr]
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*Ugh. That last Pop Byte made me all cranky. Let’s bring a little joy into our hearts with a list of what gifts to get that comic book fan in your life! I, for one, would love a pair of Wonder Woman socks even though, let’s face it, she really got the short stick when it came to gadgetry. A lasso that makes people tell the truth?! Insert stalker girlfriend joke here. [GeekOut]
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Universal Studios Theme Park in Orlando is  kissing their Jaws ride goodbye, along with a few other historical notables. I hate to see Jaws go, it was a classic albeit expected, but what, pray tell, might Universal be thinking? Well, Stage Two, of course – Stage Two of Harry Potter the Wizarding Experience. Man, the kids that acted in those movies are set for life and they’re barely old enough to sophomores in college. [The Baltimore Sun]
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*J.J. Abrams, you’re tearing me apart! The newest Star Trek gunk churned out from the rumor mills is that Benicio Del Toro will not be the villain in the Star Trek sequel, but the evil character will, in fact, be KHAAAAAAN! I like Khan, I remember Khan, and to this day I hate the idea of bugs in or near my ears because of Khan. But I was equally excited to see what Benicio Del Toro could have done with a part in Star Trek. Good things we have, like, a million years for things to change before the movie comes out (May 2013). [Blastr]
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*And the Star Trek news doesn’t stop there. Peter Weller has signed on to act in the upcoming sequel right as Benicio  signed off. Can’t put a face to Weller? That’s probably because so few people have actually seen it: He was RoboCop. [Variety] I wonder if they’ll do those awesome RoboCop ads, too…
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*While we’re discussing aliens, do you think you might have ever been abducted? Than look no further – Here’s a list of six telltale signs that you’ve been taken by extraterrestrials at some point in your life! Be careful in your analysis, though. Many of these symptoms are similar to a hot night out on the town with your good friend Jack Daniels. [TheSmokingJacket]
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*Nothing makes me cringe more than “ironic fashion”…except for maybe ironic facial hair… Anyway, hipsters every where line up in droves each year to purchase bad holiday sweaters from Salvation Army, Buffalo Exchange, and other used clothing gold mines. I myself bought one from Tee Fury yesterday, actually, but it was a t-shirt of a bad holiday sweater so it doesn’t count (okay, fine, it does. Judge away.). Designers are now totally in on this trend and currently sell – at insane prices – horrible holiday sweaters. If I could ever afford anything from the Stella McCartney line, the last thing it I would purchase is an ironically bad sweater. Ugh. [Fashionista]
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*Sure, I can make Peking Duck, but it would be far tastier as a Peking Romulan Bird of Prey! Cooking needs no longer to be unGeeky with these fantastic Kitchen accoutrements. Be it an Enterpriseing pizza, darth cookies, or needing your drinks on the rocks with a Gotham feel, we’ve got your cocina needs met. Just yet another list of gift ideas for the Michelin starred nerd in your home. [Blastr]
*It amazes me how so many nations can remain so incredibly sheltered in today’s day and age. I take my technological outlets and freedom of press for granted far too often. I say this because Saudi Arabi has announced it believes giving women the right to drive will cause them to have promiscuous sex. I can’t even begin to crack jokes on this. Cultural differences are one thing, but oppression is merely oppression. Besides, it’s the back of parked station wagon’s that cause promiscuous sex, not the act of driving itself. [HuffingtonPost]

Tuesday Pop Bytes

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I got Pop Bytes comin’ out the wazoo today!

* Don’t want to make a regular turkey for Thanksgiving this year? Try making Meat Cupcakes!…On second thought, don’t.

* DOCTOR WHO CHRISTMAS SPECIAL TRAILER!

 

* A doll sold by Toys R Us giggles and coos and calls you a Crazy Bitch.

* New Arrested Development is super confirmed. They’ll be comin’ at ya through Netflix Streaming in 2013. It’s going to be quite the year for movies and TV! Personally, I think to commemorate this, Ben and Jerry’s should come out with a flavor called “The Money’s in the Banana Stand”. It would be banana ice cream, with little chocolate dollars/coins, and peanuts! When it comes to food, especially fatty foods, I can kinda be a genius some times.

* The Walking Dead does not share accurate information about the Morning After Pill. Please tell me the American Public isn’t so dim that it would take medical advice from zombies. Talk to your doctor.

* Remember that thing I mentioned last week about Lucas Arts reserving some domain names? Well, here’s why they did that.

* Good news: The first Hobbit trailer is upon us. The bad news: You may have to go see the Sherlock Holmes sequel in order to see it. Speaking of Holmes, when are more Sherlock (the BBC series) going to come out?! Here’s a bit of cool trivia that excites me: The Hobbit trailer will be seen with the Sherlock Holmes movies, yeah? Well, Bilbo Baggins and the voice of Smaug in the film Hobbit are Watson and Sherlock, respectively, in the BBC series Sherlock!!! Awesome, right? I know. It’s badass.

* Need nerdy ornaments for your tree? My personal collection far out strips this little list from Blastr, but theirs is still a collection worth noting.

* Aren’t Engagement photos lame? Yeah, they are. But not these. Nope. These are Star Wars inspired engagement photos. The exact thing needed to prove to your family that you’re mature enough to get married. Awesome.

* NPR has put together the ultimate Thanksgiving playlist, for those who are itchy to pull the trigger the Holiday music gun, but know their family will kill them. I might be talking about me.

*Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you should know by now that Neil Gaiman was on the Simpsons this past Sunday. I love Neil Gaiman. I’ve been reading his work since I was 14 years old, back when my parents had to limit the number of comic books I could buy each week. Remember: I did have a part time job at that age. And I realized something recently about Mr. Gaiman: he is wicked hot. He is definitely my older man crush. So, when I say I love him….

* Someone decided they wanted to know what it would sound like to play every Beatles song ever at the same time. Hidden message from the Devil? Maybe. Hipster nonsense? A bit more like it.

* I don’t know if there really is a hidden alien in every single South Park episode, but it’s a study I’m willing to take on.

* Finally, don’t get divorced. Just sell your spouse on Craigslist like this batshit crazy genius woman did.