Thursday, October 30, 2008

a complaint pt. 2

it's raining for the first time since i've moved here. like, seriously raining. it had to be the day before halloween. it's supposed to rain all day tomorrow and saturday. rats.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

a complaint

humira days are dreadful.

that is all.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

a question

If I may ask, what exactly is this cartoonist trying to imply?

This was in the Montclarion's newspaper last week and it's apparently ruffling some feathers. My question is: why worry about something that lacks talent and logic?

I'm seeing this as an attempt to bring racism to the election. Sort of make racism a hot topic worthy of discussion or something. Thankfully, this election hasn't come to a biased towards African Americans. It has, however, started a serious smear campaign on the Muslim community, implying that it is unsafe to elect a man that is a Muslim (regardless of the fact that Obama is in no way a Muslim). The reinstated fear of Muslims isn't recognized in the cartoon, so what exactly is this cartoonist saying? And if these people were ignorant enough to use the n-word.. why exactly are they voting for him? Where is your logic? Even better question: Where is your talent?

I think if this cartoonist was attempting for shock value, congratulations, you're an asshole. However, it would've made more of a statement if it had actually made sense. This doesn't. Let's just disregard this and not even give it the credit it strives for. Freedom of speech is important to me, but I also would prefer my political cartoons to be relevant.

I posted that on the comment section, and as I am using capital letters and actually recognizing this cartoon, I'm merely using it as an example of the lack of talent that is emerging from college level cartoonists. I'm hoping that we will be able to contribute more sensible insight in the future. For now, let's simply turn the page until a real talent emerges with something more substantial to say.

Love and Loyalty

a piece of my childhood

look what i found!!!!!! perfect timing too, because it's almost halloween and i have done little to prepare.

you have to understand something about me, readers... i live for halloween. let me assure you that moving here was the right idea because the san francisco lifestyle involves attending multiple costume parties throughout the year. it's really quite grand.

halloween is grinch night! amazing

this just keeps getting better... it's "the pumpkin who couldn't smile"

i related to that poor kid so much for some reason.

no way! garfield too???! somebody pinch me

satisfying. it would've been nice to have "located witch's night out", but apparently no one has any interest in putting it up on the internet.

my old home (new jersey) is also seeing something that isn't as readily available on the internet for me to enjoy... snow. it's snowing in my hometown. it's 64 degrees here today. im not sure if i'm bragging or complaining. the jersey readers probably think im bragging and the california readers probably think im complaining... im not sure what im doing. im merely making an observation. and now im not sure what to do... whatever im gonna watch the grinch night special again!!!

love and loyalty

Saturday, October 25, 2008

a stupid allergy attack

here's a change of pace for the blog- a little math:

michael kasian + sudden beautiful weather and dramatic climate change = an allergic reaction that keeps him in bed for two straight days.

any longer in bed and i probably would've started to resemble this blessed creature

it's not pretty, i can assure you.

my bedroom turned into a mess, every orifice felt swollen and clogged and my room started to smell of rotting human. the cats didnt even want to go in there.

unfortunately, i missed both of my classes and dont know what happened.

yesterday, i was able-bodied enough to make my way to the market, purchase allergy medication and ACTUALLY PREPARE VEGETABLE SOUP. i of course, was using the spices given to me by a reader, instructed on how to prepare the soup by a friend via videophone and basically ordered to do it by my mother in the first place. well done, everyone. the soup is pretty damn good, if i do say so myself.

now, i may not own a television, but in the reports i've been reading on the internet, i can't help but have the same expression on my face at the end of every article. you all have probably been making the same faces after seeing these ridiculous commercials or listening to any preposterous allegations on barack obama. you know, this face:

it's the "huh? are you kidding me? isn't the election over yet?" face. the latest comes from an interview between vice presidential candidate joe biden and florida wftv anchor barbara west. i was left confused and stupefied. what ever happened to journalism? thankfully, i'm enrolled in a program that allows me to try and figure that out. enjoy...

p.s. - these images are courtesy of "Witch's Night Out" and it's a classic

love and loyalty

Thursday, October 23, 2008

a silly mistake

please remember to vote november 4th. even if it isn't for barack obama, make yourself known.

love and loyalty

Monday, October 20, 2008

a day of film and disgust

as my research progresses and with the help of my professor, i've been able to put together a group of essential studies to justify my purpose to question the deregulation of television and newspapers. then something hit me: if i am studying mainstream media, wouldn't it be beneficial to get a viewpoint from a different medium? so i searched online for some documentaries and was exposed to three different films on media and political communications:

Orwell Rolls In His Grave

"Orwell Rolls in His Grave" is the consummate critical examination of the Fourth Estate, once the bastion of American democracy. Asking whether the U.S. has entered an Orwellian world of doublespeak where outright lies can pass for the truth, Pappas explores what the media doesn't like to talk about: itself.

War Made Easy: How Presidents & Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death

How does the media change during times of war and how does this change effect all of us? Watch the most comprehensive analysis of what war time media is, who it is benefits as well as who it hurts.

and a personal favorite that i couldn't help but watch for the ump-teenth time:

Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War On Journalism

"Outfoxed" exposes the politically biased slant of the Fox News Network by analysis, disclosure of internal memos and interviews of inside sources. This piece is important in understanding the overt tactics by the media to shape our opinions.

these and many, many more can be found for free at the site is a personal favorite of mine as i don't have a television because i got pretty fed up with subjective infotainment a long time ago. lately, this site has come with some crazy warning telling me that viewing it subjects me to viruses. however, ive been using this site for a long time now and have never had a problem, so feel free to ignore these bizarre and somewhat suspicious "threats".

at least on the internet you still have the capability of fact checking and finding objective reporting.

then again, there are also seriously subjective blogs and news sites that i still like to visit, for purposes of formulating my own opinions, of course.

arianna huffington, a personal favorite, posted an article on her site,, similar to my research, which made me realize that i am even closer to proving that we are kindred spirits... enjoy:

The Internet and the Death of Rovian Politics

Age has finally become an issue for John McCain. But the problem isn't the candidate's 72 years; it's the antediluvian approach of his campaign.

McCain is running a textbook Rovian race: fear-based, smear-based, anything goes. But it isn't working. The glitch in the well-oiled machine? The Internet.

"We are witnessing the end of Rovian politics," Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google told me. And YouTube, which Google bought in 2006 for $1.65 billion, is one of the causes of its demise.

Thanks to YouTube -- and blogging and instant fact-checking and viral emails -- it is getting harder and harder to get away with repeating brazen lies without paying a price, or to run under-the-radar smear campaigns without being exposed.

But the McCain campaign hasn't gotten the message, hence the blizzard of racist, alarmist, xenophobic, innuendo-laden accusations being splattered at Obama.

And it seems that the worse McCain is doing in the polls, the more his team is relying on the same gutter tactics. So over the next 15 days, look for the McCain campaign to become even uglier. That's what happens when following Rovian politics is your only strategy -- and Rovian politics isn't working.

McCain has stockpiled his campaign with Rove henchmen, including not one but three of the people responsible for the political mugging inflicted on him in 2000.

Just last week he brought on Warren Tompkins in an "unofficial" capacity to see how receptive North Carolina would be to some Rovian slime. After all, it's right next door to South Carolina, where in 2000 Tomkins and his buddies in the Bush campaign spread race-baiting rumors about McCain having an illegitimate black daughter (referring to McCain's adopted Bangladeshi daughter Bridget).

And those disgraceful robo-calls that McCain is running? They were done with the help of Jeff Larson and his firm FLS-Connect -- the same firm that created the robo-calls smearing McCain in 2000.

At the time, McCain's reaction to the attacks on him was: "I believe that there is a special place in hell for people like these."

His reaction now? I have a special place in my campaign for people like these!

So the Karl Rove specials keep coming. Obama and Ayers. Obama the Socialist. Obama and ACORN "destroying the fabric of democracy." Palin (herself the manifestation of Rovian decision-making) delineating which parts of "this great nation of ours" are "pro-American." (Interestingly, the sites of the 9/11 attacks didn't make the list.)

And, did you hear, Obama is also... black! And he wants to give your money to all the poor black people! McCain didn't come right out and say that, but it's surely what he insinuated in his radio address this weekend: "Barack Obama's tax plan would convert the IRS into a giant welfare agency." Somewhere, Karl Rove is smiling, Richard Nixon's southern strategy is waxing nostalgic, and John McCain's missing moral compass is getting steamed about John Lewis' evocation of the civil rights struggle.

But there is a diamond amidst all this dung: the lack of traction this Rovian politics is getting. It's as if Rove and his political arsonists keep lighting fires, only to see them doused by the powerful information spray the Internet has made possible.

The Internet has enabled the public to get to know candidates in a much fuller and more intimate way than in the old days (i.e. four years ago), when voters got to know them largely through 30-second campaign ads and quick sound bites chosen by TV news producers.

Compare that to the way over 6 million viewers (on YouTube alone) were able to watch the entirety of Obama's 37-minute speech on race -- or the thousands of other videos posted by the campaign and its supporters.

Back in the Dark Ages of 2004, when YouTube (and HuffPost, for that matter) didn't exist, a campaign could tell a brazen lie, and the media might call them on it. But if they kept repeating the lie again and again and again, the media would eventually let it go (see the Swiftboating of John Kerry). Traditional media like moving on to the next shiny thing. But bloggers love revisiting a story. So when Palin kept repeating her bridge to nowhere lie, bloggers kept calling her on it. Andrew Sullivan, for one, has made a cottage industry of calling Palin on her lies. And eventually, the truth filtered up and cost McCain credibility with his true base: journalists.

The Internet may make it easier to disseminate character smears, but it also makes it much less likely that these smears will stick.

As a result, the McCain campaign's insinuation-laden "Who is Barack Obama?" was rendered more comical than spooky. Who is Barack Obama? The guy we've been watching over and over and over during the last two years. We've seen him. We know him. And we can remind ourselves about him with a quick Google search and a mouse click.

Obama "has shown the same untroubled self-confidence day after day," and "over the past two years, Obama has clearly worn well with voters." Those are the words of David Brooks, who has gotten to know Obama just like the rest of us.

Four years ago, McCain's Rovian race-based appeals to our darker demons might have worked. This year, they are blowing up in McCain's face. And in the face of the entire GOP.

Colin Powell's endorsement of Obama as "a transformational figure" was powerful. But even more powerful was his withering indictment of the state of the Republican Party and the cancer of Rovian politics.

It was similar to the diagnosis of Christopher Buckley following his endorsement of Obama: "To paraphrase a real conservative, Ronald Reagan, I haven't left the Republican Party. It left me."

There are many other anti-Rove Republicans abandoning their party. I've had several Republican friends tell me privately what Powell and Buckley told the world publicly: that they're voting for Obama. Most of them not because they like Obama, but because they can't stand what Bush, Rove and now McCain and Palin have done to their party.

Rovian politics may or may not end up destroying the GOP. But, thanks to the Internet, with a bit of luck it will no longer have the power to befoul our democracy.

nice, right? seeing an article like this from a person i respect greatly sort of justifies my research even further. perhaps ill include her in my paper, too.

after all of the films and note taking, i began to get a little upset over all of the mistrust that exists between our country's leaders and our countrymen. with no ice cream or other assorted comfort food available, my roommate handed me some mail, which is uplifting enough because i never really get mail at all.

i got this from my aunt:

perfect timing.

thank you so much!

love and loyalty

Sunday, October 19, 2008

a simple explanation

this quote explains the problem with america's current financial system:

"as in a poker game where the chips were concentrated in fewer and fewer hands, the other fellows could stay in the game only by borrowing. when their credit ran out, the game stopped."

marriner s. eccles
FDR's fed chairman (1951)

love and loyalty

Saturday, October 18, 2008

a race

ive had a lot of work lately, so my nose has been in the books. however, during those moments when i had some time off, i've been gallivanting around town with new friends and fellow students. after thursday's class ended a little early, we all decided to make a pilgrimage to a bar in sunset... and let me just say, all business in the classroom, not so much in the bar... i have grown to appreciate my classmates a whole lot more. nothing brings a bunch of strangers together like james brown.

ooo but before we all met at the bar, melissa the bed giver took me to my first in n' out burger experience. super cheap grilled cheese sandwich but super tasty. it was delicious. so much so that i kept the wrapper.

yes, im strange. deal with it and move on.

saturday in delores park was a little different. redbull sponsored a boxcar derby tournament. i got to check out the cars as they made their way to the top of the hill. all of a sudden, as team squid made their way up, i realize that my friend stephanie was part of the pit crew.

there she is in the wetsuit! awesome!

then i made my way down to see their home stretches... unfortunately (depends how you look at it) some of the cars didn't make it to the end.

to be honest, i didn't make it either. i took another humira shot so i'm all tired and worn out. im going to take a nap and then go for a run to wake myself up for whatever happens tonite. ill be sure to keep you posted.

love and loyalty

Thursday, October 16, 2008

a reason to not visit ohio

a haiku

my dear emily
many smiles and well wishes
on your special day

love and loyalty

Monday, October 13, 2008

a queen

this is what i slept on for two months:

granted, there was a blanket or two to help make it seem more comfortable, but it was really unfortunate. a girl from my class told me that one of her roommates went to live out of his car in the mountains so he no longer needed his bed (san francisco). i jump in and after a month's worth of planning, my friend lucas and i were off to strap the mattress and box spring onto her car, complete with a lot of rope and careful planning (thanks dad).

i sleep on this now.

it's the most comfortable sleeping situation ive ever had. the sheets are like silk, the feather mattress pad is perfection and my neck/spine don't hurt as much. im very happy.

so is church

once i did all the work, church tested it out by sleeping on it for 12 hours.

i was so well rested this morning that i was able to run for a full hour up some pretty tough hills. i would type more but i think i wanna fall asleep again in this thing.

love and loyalty

Saturday, October 11, 2008

a pet shop

for those of you that are fortunate enough to be in the northeast, check out banksy's first official collection in new york city: "Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill" on 89 Seventh Avenue South. upon first viewing, i thought this was a response to the criticism he received for having painted an elephant as part of his last exhibit in los angeles.

turns out, i was right. below is a quote from the elusive artist on his latest work and some photos and shots on what to expect from the pet store -

"New Yorkers don’t care about art, they care about pets. So I’m exhibiting them instead. I wanted to make art that questioned our relationship with animals and the ethics and sustainability of factory farming, but it ended up as chicken nuggets singing. I took all the money I made exploiting an animal in my last show and used it to fund a new show about the exploitation of animals. If its art and you can see it from the street, I guess it could still be considered street art" - Banksy

to all of my east coast readers, go have a laugh for me as i clearly cannot be there and let me know what you thought.

as for now, im off to clean my room to prepare for getting my new bed. new in the sense that it isn't the twin junior mattress on the floor ive been using. this bed is hardly "new," but it sure is better than what ive got going on here.

love and loyalty

Friday, October 10, 2008

a new alarm clock

i keep waking up thinking that it's the end of the world. before that moment of recognition kicks in when you realize where you are, i seriously keep thinking that america is under attack. it's actually fleet week and the jets are just practicing for an actual attack or something. either way, ive been pretty freaked out this week when i wake up. faced with the end of the world every morning, ive decided to start looking at things a little differently. im taking some more chances and doing things that i've been wanting to do for a while, including disco dancing, opening up to my fellow students and climb to the top of the architecturally confusing student center building on campus.

ive been tempted to do this for awhile, but i always felt that it would look kind of corny to walk up there with a camera and ogle at the glimpse of the pacific ocean.

well i did it. thank you, fleet week. your terrorizing wake up calls have influenced me on a very positive level.

so much so that i am attempting to use the spices that i got in my big old care package sent from another reader (thanks again).

for now, im off to do some serious weekend enjoyment by catching a movie... by myself! ive never gone to a movie alone before, but it's time i tried it out. after all, you never know when those fighter jets are going to mean serious business.

love and loyalty

Monday, October 6, 2008

a birthday

at one point in my life, i was a bit of a rebel. perhaps we can call those the "teenage years". to this day i couldn't tell you what i was rebelling against (authority, the establishment, curfews, etc.) but i can say that i was actively rebelling for quite a few years.

my father could probably tell you the same because he had to deal with the brunt of it. he was the authority, the establishment, giver of curfews, etc.

ive now come to learn that he is without a doubt an inspiring man and my undisputed hero. working constantly to support my 3 sisters, my mother and myself, he has somehow been able to find the time to offer words of wisdom to us in hopes that we can someday be as successful as he is today.

he's also had some of the best one-liners i've heard in my lifetime:

"if you don't keep it down im gonna hug you with a pencil"

"yeah, we got a big screen tv with sound-surround speakers"

"playstation, 9-tendo, etc."

we all have our moments, but it's the moments of support and encouragement that i can always count on.

to my father, with love and loyalty, a very happy birthday

Saturday, October 4, 2008

a city sized apology

living in san francisco is like having a city sized best friend that lets you live on their stomach. well, i think i live on the stomach. hayes valley is a cozy, comfortable neighborhood where all flavors of people come to coexist. twice every week, ill travel outbound to visit the brain of the city, san francisco state, to absorb new information from some of the city's smartest cells. with every friendship, of course, comes the rocky times. times when you wish you weren't living on top of one another. times when you feel like you just need space (or a plane ticket). that would be yesterday. yesterday we didn't get along very well. in fact, it's safe to say that san francisco walked all over me. literally. i went to the very tip of the downtown area just to get trampled on (you can read about our fight in the previous post). today, after my first run in my new running shoes, i found myself traveling to civic center, the heart of san francisco, to participate in LOVEFEST 2008, a street party that celebrates electronic music, dancing and well, love. how appropriate that it takes place in civic center, the heart of the city. and let me tell you, it was beating hard and fast. started in germany as a way to celebrate a changing europe back in '89, san francisco has adopted it to celebrate it's spirited community, and it's rapidly turned into the largest dance party on the planet. over a dozen dj booths, bars set up on every corner, costumes and outfits that you haven't seen since the last rave you went to in philadelphia back in 8th grade, dancing, parade floats, bubbles, etc. etc. etc.

we obviously made up. we're friends again. the party isn't stopping until 4 in the morning, but ive got some reading to do. it was a nice way to say "im sorry". below are some of the photos of our make up session. enjoy!

all of the kids packed into one muni train. i felt like a sardine, only they were all rainbow fish. this was just a preview. i still had no idea why everyone was dressed the way they were.

at this point, im making my way over and the music is getting louder, the crowds are getting more lively and im quickly getting over yesterday.

i met up with brandi (my fellow student that saved me from homelessness way back in august) and her friend jordan when out of nowhere this broad came walking through. i asked her where she was from and it sounded like someplace boring in california. i told her to move up here so we could be friends. i think she just wanted to be in the beer line.

crowds crowds crowds

find the floating disco ball!

no one can keep their clothes on in san francisco. floats, fun and lost of frolicking

this was by far my favorite photo. city hall has never been so colorful

and this unflattering shot was how i looked the entire day.

LOVE (ha!) and loyalty