Monday, October 31, 2011

The Tree of Death


Our final Halloween animated short comes from Fuh-rance—Mortys focuses in on a mother grim reaper trying to balance her job and her family life in the 21st century.  I saw this video quite a while ago and it was actually the inspiration for doing a weeks’ worth of animated shorts… hope you enjoy!


Artist: Danny Elman /  Album: Sleepy Hollow


I mentioned last year that I’m not exactly gung ho about dressing up for Halloween.  It’s not that I think it’s silly or immature or whatever… I just honestly can’t be bothered with it. I typically just wear orange and call it a day but thought I’d one up myself (only just a bid) and got my “costume” from shirt.Woot, which I have mentioned here a couple of times before


Laundry Day  halloween2

“Laundry Day” close up; don’t I look thrilled?!? I’m helping pass out candy at Catherine’s house tonight and she loaned me the cape!


I also mentioned in the post from last year that it’s not like I never dressed up as a kid—in fact it’s quite the contrary.  I think I specifically mentioned a certain year when Liz Kelly and I went as Superman and Supergirl (and Jenny Yates’ costume was all abuzz with the mom's because it was from Neimans or something fancy!) Since then I have gotten the visual proof of it and other childhood Halloween’s past!


Able to leap tall… stumps?


It actually wasn’t uncommon for Liz and I to go as a duo:


*cough* Cam *cough


If not a duo then at least in tandem:


With her brother, Daniel (far left), and my brother, Matt Dr. Roberts (far right)


And finally, a non-costumed picture that is still Halloween appropriate (and is still a good representation of me and my brother).


I’m putting on a show and Matt’s doing all the work!


Artist: Barbra Streisand / Album: Superman

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Devil’s Food


My friend and gallery neighbor from the Hooks-Epstein Gallery, Yvonne, invited me to her sister’s Halloween party this past Friday and lemme tell you, they were NOT messing around.

Let’s just take a look at a small selection of the food-stuffs they had provided:

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Yes, that would in fact be a breadstick spider filled with dipping sauce and a Cheshire Cat cheese ball.


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Mummy dogs, Ghost of Monte Cristo sandwiches, a meat head and meateyeballs


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The hosts (far left and Beetlejuice) with Ketchup, Mustard and Hotdog


I had to head out early because I had been developing a steadily worsening sore throat over the day and A.) didn’t want to get anyone else sick if it were infections and B.) really didn’t want to be that creepster just sitting in the corner not talking to anyone.  Needless to say, I should have taken more pictures of the great costumes and decorations buuuuuut I didn’t so get over it already!


Artist: Alice Cooper / Album: Welcome to My Nightmare

A Night on Bald Mountain


In response to a bit of the naughtiness of yesterday’s post I think it’s appropriate for a bit of Sunday redemption… this time in an “oldy-but-goody” excerpt from Fantasia.  That, and I will find a way to use every clip from both Fantasia’s at some point on the blog. So far I’ve made one previously so… I guess y’all’ve (is that how you spell that? Seems like a bit of apostrophe over kill, right?) got a lot to look forward to.

Modest Mussorgsky’s “Night on Bald Mountain” and Franz Schubert’s “Ave Maria” are combined in this battle between the “profane and the sacred” from the original 1940 (!) film.

Get it lil’ ghoulies!!


Artist: Modest Mussorgsky / Album: Fantasia

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Until Death Do Us Part


Well it’s Saturday, which means it’s time to loosen up a bit!! That’s what Saturday means, right?  Sadly enough, I’ll be spending it at home and in bed with a horrible sore throat… wah wah.  At any rate, Mourir Auprès de Toi (To Die By Your Side), is a collaboration between director Spike Jonze (best known for Where the Wild Things Are, Being John Malkovich, Adaptation, and his many forays into music video land) and designer Olympia Le-Tan that focuses on the “star-crossed” love story of two characters from book covers in the fictional Parisian bookstore, Shakespeare and Co.

Fair warning, there’s a bit of “loosening up” happening in the video—they are only felt puppets, mind you—but it might be a bit inappropriate for some of you.  You know who you are!

Spike Jonze: Mourir Auprès de Toi on


Artist: Danny Elfman / Album: The Corpse Bride

Friday, October 28, 2011

Happy Weekend


Today’s selection is another Academy Award nominated short film, this time following two undertakers as they attempt to deliver their package goods commission charge coffin to its final resting place.


Artist: Ray Merrell/ Album: Keep the Customer Satisfied

Remembering My Childhood on the Continent of Africa


It’s not often that I genuinely ask people to donate money for causes; the only other time I can remember is when Keliy Anderson-Staley was raising funds on Kickstarter for her Imagined Family Heirlooms project which, by the way, far surpassed its goal!  I know some of you donated and I thank you!! 

At any rate, I’m back on the street corner lookin’ for more handouts … not for myself, mind you, but once again for a good cause! My friends, Jamie (she of the bestfriendedness as well as the creator of the infamous Chrimmuhtreehead) and Abby will be going next month to do some work with the Amani Education Project in Kenya and want to help do a little extra something special for the children of the school in the Maweni Village.



Per Jamie and Abby:

As some of you may recall, in Fall of 2007, Abby ventured across the sea and landed in Kenya. Living there for 3 months and working at Amani School truly changed the entire course of her life. Next month, we're both going, granted for a much shorter amount of time, and we'd love to do a little something special for the kiddos while we're there.

Haller Park is a wildlife refuge not far (by our standards) from the village that the children live in. However, the majority of the children in the village have never been on any trip or any kind, much less a fun one where they might get to meet a famous hippo and tortoise pair. In addition to seeing fun animals and their first field trip, we'll also make sure they get a healthy lunch. However, we realize we can't do it alone.

If all of our friends and family included in this email were to donate, you would each only need to give roughly $3.91 to take these adorable kids on the journey of their lifetime. Though, we realize that not everyone will donate, so your generosity is really appreciated. Plus, any extra funds not used for this field trip will be donated directly to the school.

For more information on the Amani Education Project click here, and please follow this link in order to donate!! You may need to create a Paypal username and password in order to donate. Don't fret, creating login details is free, as is general membership with PayPal. Upon donating, you'll receive a confirmation number, an email with donation details and a link to print your own receipt.

Thanks in advance!!!


Artist: David Sedaris/ Album: Me Talk Pretty One Day (yeah, yeah, it’s an audiobook but I’ve already set a precedent… PLUS, Jamie went with me to a David Sedaris book signing, so it’s doubly appropriate)

Thursday, October 27, 2011



Because it would be unfair to not have Tim Burton represented…


Artist: Josh Groban/ Album: Josh Groban

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hello, Dolly!


Our next Halloween animated short selection isn’t so much terrifyingly creepy as it is… cherrily creepy?


Alma from Rodrigo Blaas on Vimeo.


Artist: Jerry Herman/ Album: Hello, Dolly

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Every Day a Little Death


So apparently I’ve just given up on blogging, huh?  October of last year I made it a point to do a blog post a day… this month I’m up to a whopping three.  So, in order to get back in the biz, I’ve decided that since there is a little less than a week to Halloween I would feature an appropriately seasonally themed animated short a day until the 31st!

Our first installment, The Lady and the Reaper, is an Academy Award nominee (2009) and follows the tale of an elderly woman who is waiting for death in order to be reunited with her long passed husband.

The lady and the reaper from Hormoz Zamanpour Siahkal on Vimeo.

Why do they all talk like Sims characters?!?!


Artist: Stephen Sondheim/ Album: A Little Night Music

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Whale of a Tale


As with a large percentage of my posts, this really has no intrinsic value other than it’s beautiful… oh yeah, I guess it teaches you stuff too.  Surprise, surprise, I found this on BoingBoing.



The above reminded me, for obvious reason, of a segment from BBC’s Life.  If you listened to my advice a while back then you have already seen it, but for those of you who didn’t then here’s a little taste:



And, just because it’s the way my mind works, a little 30 Rock for your Saturday afternoon pleasure:



Artist: Kirk Douglas/ Album: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Saturday, October 8, 2011

To Build a Home


I have officially been an “inner looper” for two weeks now and through setting up my new apartment I have come across a few decorating deficiencies with which I figured you blog friends could help out.  Gift registries courtesy of BoingBoing, Gizmodo and io9.  There’s a wide variety of items and price ranges to chose from, so spend spend spend!

Carved Gourd Lamps: Calabarte’s stunningly intricate lamps come in a variety of styles and sizes.  Check out his homepage for more examples his work.  Also, seeing as how it’s been just shy of six months since I’ve put up a new header I figured this was as good a time as any to change it up. (Plus it seems appropriately October-y for some reason).



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Fancy Pantsy Toothpaste Squeezer: For just the price of around a hundred tubes of toothpaste you too can own this absurdly opulent device intended for the laziest and richest amongst us.  Yay dental hygiene!!


*Note—$10.00 tube of Marvis toothpaste not included

Elipson “Sound Tree”: Umm… do I really even need to explain this one?! It’s a tree made of speakers!!  Also, feel free to throw in that pair of chairs on the right and we’ll call it a joint housewarming/Christmas present.


“Tree of Life” poster (option 1): It’s a tree trunk made out of ANIMALS!!!  Noah would be so happy.

ACRES_Poster_LR  Acres_closeup_LR

Tree of Life poster (option 2): I mentioned previously how I was lucky enough to catch this movie showing at the Michigan Theater when I was in Ann Arbor this summer and I’m a bit ub-sessed with the movie poster. PRETTY COLORS!!!


Blown-glass Goldfish Bowl: The only pet I’ve had since moving away from Crockett was when I was living in Ann Arbor.  My friends Will and Clinton had a guinea pig, Mr. Piggles, that seemed reasonable enough to deal with so I decided to get one, thinking they might become friends as well—they just ended up fighting a lot.  At any rate, I decided to give Phineas away after about a year because I wasn’t home enough to spend any quality time with him.  A goldfish, though… you don’t even have to pet them! (In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s recommended you don’t do so).



Tsunami Hurricane Capsule: And now perhaps the human equivalent of a fish bowl—a Japanese designed survival pod intended for use in a tsunami but, I’m assuming, perfectly acceptable for hurricane season here in Houston.  Plus… it “could hold four adults and had survived many crash tests.  It has a lookout window and breathing holes, and could also be used as a toy house for children.” 


A. Can’t you see me floating down Richmond in that?  B. I LOVE that he removed his shoes before going into the capsule.


Artist: The Cinematic Orchestra/ Album: Ma Fleur

Oh Be Joyful


A couple of weeks ago my friend, Rachael, invited me to go to the opening night of the Houston Symphony’s 2011/12 season.  More specifically it was Beethoven’s 9th Symphony (aka: Ode to Joy), which I had never seen in live performance!! This was also a chance to check off another venue from my “Places to See Concerts in Houston” list (having already gone to the Wortham, Alley Theater, Verizon Theater, and Fitzgeralds).  This year I’m hoping to make it to the ballet to knock another one off… any takers?


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Getting prepped!


Here is the full symphony if you are interested in listening/watching.  Conductor Leonard Bernstein leads the Vienna Philharmonic with soloists Gwyneth Jones, Shirley Verrett, Placido Domingo, and Martti Talvela.  (This is actually the third of three clips but it’s the finale… watch all of them if you have the time though!)  


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Rachel and I after the show!


And, because I still listen to this song about once a week, a different arrangement of the above music… and in my opinion, a much more technically demanding version to boot.  I mean, did Beethoven ever write a rap?  Check and mate.


Sheryl Lee Ralph! Lauryn Hill! Sign language! Jaw tension! Gospel music!  And that’s just in the first ten seconds alone!!!


Artist: Frank Wildhorn/ Album: The Civil War