Archive for July, 2008

Swedish Furniture Name Generator

Tuesday, July 29th, 2008

I’ve got IKEA on the brain. I came across this name generator while perusing Apartment Therapy. Here’s what I got when I typed my (nick)name in:

Swedish Furniture Name Generator

A Lame Survey I Turned Awesome

Sunday, July 27th, 2008

In winter, would you rather wear jackets or hoodies?
Old suit jackets I bought for $3 at Goodwill, for the following reason: awesome

Do you wish you were somewhere else right now?
I’d rather be in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, Seattle, Chicago, Atlanta, Outer Space, or The Fifth Dimension, in no particular order.

How long can you go without your mobile phone?
The talk function? Forever. The IM function? For 0 seconds.

Who did you last call babe/baby?
Baby Yoshi. Pfft, obviosly. What kind of a question is that?

What time did you go to sleep last night?
The time when people presumably like calling the POTUS with national emergencies, according to that old Hillary Clinton ad….

What/who woke you up today?
Sunlight? That’s not nearly interesting enough, so I’ll make something up: An army of giant robots farting sonic booms in the sky woke me up. It was annoying.

Do you own a polo shirt?
Yeah, one with Trogdor on it. Do I wear it? No. Will I wear it after I’ve lost 20 lbs? Yes.

How old do you look?
I dunno, you tell me.

Where are your siblings?
Somewhere on Planet Earth, presumably.

What are you going to do after this?
Either something amazingly awesome comes up, or I’ll just mow my lawn with the new weed whacker I got (that’s exciting, for yuppies).

Whose car were you in last?
Mine. And, yes, God was my co-pilot. He’s way better at giving directions than TomTom, too.

What was the last thing you drank?
Green tea with a microphone drawn on the outside of the cup.

Would you marry the last person you kissed?
I can’t remember who that is, so I cannot comment on whether or not I consider this person to be marriage material. I can, however (at your request) furnish you with a list of people who are.

Your ex shows up randomly at your house, what do you say?
“GTFO I’m playing video games!”

If it was free and it would work would you get plastic surgery?
Haven’t you heard? Plastic is bad for the environment, or something. I think God gets pissed if you use too much of it. That’s why he periodically makes breast implants explode. Also, because he’s got a great sense of humor, and exploding breast implants are hilarious. And deadly. But, more hilarious than deadly. Even though they’re very deadly.

If you were to die today would your life be complete?
Seeing as it would have come to an end, then, yes, temporally, it would be complete. Oh, are you talking about accomplishing goals and shit like that? Then WHY DON’T YOU FUCKING SAY SO?

Do you believe everyone deserves a second chance?
I believe everyone deserves a second chance at sucking. Cos it’s hilarious.

How do you handle stress?
I punch it in the face. Because I’m awesome.

Would you rather spend a whole day with your mom or your dad?
They’re both there at the same time anyway.

When was the last time you ran into your most recent ex?
Like, literally? That’s stupid. Why would I do that?

Do you think you’re approachable?
I go out of my way to be an asshole.

What is the last concert you went to?
I think it as Mindless Self-Indulgence. Also, I’ve got to pee now.

The last person you argued with?
The robot voice in my head.

Do you prefer warm or cold weather?
Did you know that leaving the A/C on all day during hot weather is much less damaging to the environment than heating your home in a very cold climate? Also, did you know that cold climates are miserable, where warm climates such as Florida are filled with beaches and celebrities and Lamborghinis? Yes, I prefer warm weather.

Is any part of your body sore?
How about hair folicles?

Do you commit to anything?
I commit to awesomeness, every day.

The funniest person you know?
It’s pretty much a toss-up between me and everyone I know, because I try to associate with only the funniest, awesomest people ever.

Do you like change?
When changing out corrupt politicians who are a disgrace to our country for hopeful young idealists, yes.

Do you get offended easily?
If I did, I’d be offended by myself, and that would be awkward.

Do you have a piggy bank?
Yes, it’s called Bank of America. They’re the biggest pig in the fucking world.

Have you ever punched a girl?
I’m not a redneck.

Slept in a different bed lately?
Nope. Maybe later?

Where is your mother right now?
Home?

What was your childhood nickname?
Oh, just some unpronouncable symbol.

If you could pack up and leave your life now to move away, would you?
Yes! But only if someone awesome packed up and left with me!

Can you take a bra off with one hand?
Practice makes perfect.

Do you still talk to the first person you kissed?
How am I going to remember who the hell that is? I don’t have space for useless information like that in my brain; need more room for sweet trivia!

Do people underestimate you?
Probably. Then they regret it.

Is it easy for others to make you feel awkward?
It’s kind of impossible.

Do you know what you are going to wear tomorrow?
I dunno, a cape?

Can you make yourself cry?
See answer for question two spots above.

Would you go back in time if you were given the chance?
Fuck yeah! First I’d travel forward in time and pick up some kickass cyborgs, then bring them to prehistoric time and watch them fight the dinosaurs. Then, I’d go back to 2008 and see how the existence of prehistoric cyborgs has changed history. Probably for the better.

Have you ever been too drunk to remember anything?
No way! I don’t want to be taken advantage of :-o

Do you know anyone who lives in Wyoming?
Does ANYONE know anyone who lives in Wyoming?

Have you ever been white water rafting?
Has ANYONE ever been white water rafting? OK, that doesn’t work so well for this question. Anyway, no, but I have been on a Slip N Slide before. Partial credit?

Do you think you would make a good parent?
OMG the best EVER! First, however, I need a couple years of “yuppie couple in swanky modern apartment in hip urban environment” lifestyle… anyone care to join me? I just need to pay off some debt and then incur some more at IKEA and I’m kind of set.

What is your current place of employment?
It’s a matter of galactic security, sorry :(

Have you ever liked someone who treated you like crap?
In jest? Always. For real? No.

Has anyone ever borrowed something from you and never returned it?
Actually, I lent my lawn mower to Jesus Christ once, and he still hasn’t returned it. He keeps using the excuse that if he comes back to Earth to give it back, it will be the second coming and herald the end of days and it’s not the right time yet, or some BS like that. What, he can turn water into wine, but he has to borrow MY fucking lawn mower?

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BRB giving my persona info to scammers

Friday, July 25th, 2008

BRB jokes during the course of an IM conversation are entertaining. Example from moments ago:

[23:03] asurroca: […] I gave you a secret code valid for a prize of a free iPod Touch, Nintendo Wii, or Xbox 360, if you just enter the code, answer whether or not Bush should be fired, and enter your birthdate, credit card info, and social security number

[23:03] asurroca: so you pretty much missed out bigtime

[23:03] Kate: fuck.

[23:03] asurroca: yup, sorry

[23:04] asurroca: I went ahead and entered the info myself

[23:04] asurroca: so I’m going to get some sweet new gear for FREE!

[23:04] asurroca: brb checking bank acct

[23:06] asurroca: holy SHIT! My credit cards are maxed out and my bank accts are drained! How could this have happened?!?!?!??!

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Albums Best Heard Together: Drums Not Dead and Deceit

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008

Liars has become a darling of the indie world, especially after their 2006 record, Drums Not Dead—look no further than Pitchfork Media’s glowing review for confirmation. Their drum-based, drone-filled sound doesn’t make for an easy listen, and sounds nothing like the hacks that fill the indie landscape lately. Drums Not Dead is almost perfect, but it’s also been done before.

Album art for This Heat-Deceit (1981)Album cover for Liars-Drums Not Dead (2006)

See, while you’ve probably already heard of Liars (the band opened for Radiohead during their 2008 North American tour), it’s much less likely that you’ve ever heard of This Heat. And Liars’ entire sound is essentially the application of a fresh coat of paint on a 1981 masterpiece by the name of Deceit.

Rather than accuse Liars of ripping off the forgotten 70s-era post-punk band This Heat, I choose to believe that Liars is paying homage to This Heat unless I find out otherwise. If you’ve heard Deceit, you’ll find Drums Not Dead definitely comes from the same place. Both records open with un-threatening, almost peaceful tracks, then pull the rug out and launch into tracks filled with menacing drum lines, screaming, and a caustic, off-balance feel that continues through the remainder of each.

That’s not to say that either record is a chore to listen to. On Deceit: “Cenotaph”, with its Joy Division-esque sound, would have made a fine single in 1981 (less so today; maybe on satellite radio), “Makeshift Swahili” is the most punk-like track on the record, and “A New Kind of Water” morphs from a beautiful, droning anthem into a proper rock song. And on Drums Not Dead, “Let’s Not Wrestle Mt. Heart Attack” is likely to be a signature Liars song for a while—when I saw them open for Radiohead in West Palm Beach, it was their set opener. “Drums Gets a Glimpse” is a slower, pretty track that wouldn’t be out of place on a Broken Social Scene record.

It’s interesting that where I heard a little of This Heat’s contemporaries such as Can and Joy Division (and on one track, perhaps Dead Can Dance) in their record, I heard a little of Liars’ own contemporaries such as (in addition to Broken Social Scene) The Microphones, and Radiohead. The only track I’m not sure about is Drums Not Dead‘s closer, “To Hold You, Drum”, which comes off embarrassingly like a carbon copy of Deceit‘s sound. While the rest of the record stays far enough away from This Heat’s sound for Liars to come off as merely on the same wavelength as This Heat, this track implies that the band merely listened to Deceit on repeat while they were dreaming up ideas for new tracks.

As I’ve said, I choose to believe otherwise. Give both a listen. But be warned: Deceit has been out of print for a while, so it’s basically impossible to find at retail stores and difficult to find at download sites.

Must-have app: Dashwire

Friday, July 11th, 2008

Dashwire logoIf you have a Windows Mobile phone and an unlimited data plan, you have to get Dashwire like, yesterday. If you’re using anything else and/or don’t have an unlimited data plan, then I’m sorry.

Dashwire, recently out of private beta, lives as an app on your WinMo 5 or 6 phone (Symbian and BlackBerry support on the way) and dutifully sends out almost everything to the other half of this equation, a web app that lets you manage your phone from your computer. The data gets synced over the air automatically, so you know that nearly everything on your phone is also available on the web.

Backup to the Dashwire Cloud

Dashwire will pick up and sync your photos, your text messages, your contacts, your ringtones, even your call history and voicemail (via Callwave). And it syncs almost frighteningly fast: I had the web app open, and received a phone call; by the time I hung up perhaps a minute later, the call was already displayed in my call history on the Dashwire web app.

Dashwire screenshot

Web2.0 for your Phone

Dashwire doesn’t stop there, even though as an online backup for your phone alone, it would already kick ass. No, Dashwire gives you the whole web2.0 social networking aspect, like any good web app would. When you set your status on your phone through the Dashwire app, it sends the status update to your Facebook and Twitter status (and I’m sure more services are in the pipeline). Your phone gets its own little profile page, with a stream of all the photos and video you’ve shot posted up as a tumblelog. And you can view your text messages like an instant messaging conversation, a la iChat/iPhone. You can also send text messages or Skype any of your contacts from the Dashwire web app, as well as share anything with your contacts.

Verdict: Awesome Squared

So far, I’m in love. Dashwire has that feeling of something that does everything just right. The last time I was so smitten with a service was Google’s GrandCentral, which I still use constantly. Hell, it’s replaced my phone number. Did I forget to mention that Dashwire, like GrandCentral is completely free? It basically does 90% of Apple’s MobileMe service, except it costs nothing. Read: Killer app.

One final note: Apparently, Microsoft is already on the list of investors. And the start-up behind Dashwire just happens to be in Seattle. With Danger (the folks behind the Sidekick) in their company, I immediately thought that adding Dashwire to the Sidekick would be nothing short of perfect. If Dashwire can get their “cloud” to sync back to Outlook over the air, then, I’ll be in mobile heaven.

Panel Van

Sunday, July 6th, 2008



Panel Van, originally uploaded by ASurroca.

This is the first HHR panel Van I’ve seen. I almost thought Chevy had decided not to make them. And now that I know they did, I almost want to get one, slam it, paint it flat black, and have pinstripe artwork added to it. Almost.

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Trampoline

Friday, July 4th, 2008



Trampoline, originally uploaded by ASurroca.

So, I inherited a trampoline from my brother today. With three people working, it took all of 10 minutes to install it!

I also put in a firepit to go with the barbecue I already have there. I guess my backyard is really shaping up into something pretty cool.

Sadly, I won’t be actually usingthe BBQ or anything this 4th. This is Florida: it’s about to storm right now.

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Painting my Door, Part 1

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008



Painting my Door, Part 1, originally uploaded by ASurroca.

I’ve got sliding door in the computer room that’s still filled with drawings left behind by the previous owners’ kids, and I’ve decided to paint over them…not with paint, but with my own artwork, of course.

First of, I’m testing to see whether or not the Sharpie fades out on that paint. Either way, I’ll probably paint the door in a flat white…it’s cream colored right now, which I’m not OK with.

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A Little Linear Love in Album Covers

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2008

When I saw the cover for the new Death Cab for Cutie album, I thought to myself, “hey, I’ve seen this before.”

Cover for Death Cab for Cutie album, \

Les Savy Fav, The Microphones, and Lamb all had similar album covers for their respective albums around the turn of the century.

The Microphones, in 2000
I would say the Death Cab for Cutie album cover bears the closest resemblance to this one, made from a few apparently hand-cut photographs.

Cover for The Microphones album, \

Les Savy Fav, in 2001
The artwork consists of several photos that were chopped up and then spliced into one, creating a colorful, line-filled collage. It’s especially apparent on the album’s backside, where all the band’s members show up in the same space.

Cover for Les Savy Fav album, \Rear side of Les Savy Fav album, \

Lamb, in 2001
Rather than cutting out the band’s members linearly, the artwork here uses squares, but does about the same thing as the Les Savy Fav cover. The album’s 2003 US release was much less interesting, showing only the band’s lamb “logo” on a blue background. Boring, and two years late. Thanks, amazon.co.uk.

Cover for UK edition of Lamb album, \

Garfield Minus Garfield

Tuesday, July 1st, 2008

Yes, I know Garfield Minus Garfield, or G-G, isn’t new, and I may lose internets cred by posting an old meme. Whatever. At any rate, I’ve always felt sorry for Jon Arbuckle. When you get past the humor in Garfield, what you’re left with is depressing. As evidenced by G-G:

G-G cartoon

G-G cartoon

G-G cartoon

Sadly, I’m finding that I can relate to Jon more and more each day.

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