January 2003

(Today’s title borrows from the very funny blog Girls Are Pretty, which comes up with a new theme for every day.)

You too can feel that much closer to a rock star

The mysterious vinyl_demon informs me that an eBay auction selling “Rocks from Avril Lavigne’s home town Napanee” has just closed. The final price was US$1.50, which will probably be less than the cost of shipping.

My friends from Queen’s University, my alma mater, will recognize Napanee as “the sleepy little industrial town just west of Kingston, with the really large McDonald’s roadside stop.”

Because I’m all about pleasing my readers

A reader who wished to remain anonymous writes:

okay, accordion person, you’ve already run that photo of the japanese women with the breast scarves 3 times. i’m sure it’s all fine and dandy for the boys with the asian girl fetish, but what about the rest of us? can you balance the scales? can you? punk?

Why yes. Yes I can.

Photo: Me and phallic throw pillow at the Hustler store in L.A., January 2001.

Okay, Playboy, want to buy this photo? Asian boy fetishists, enjoy! (Taken at the Hustler store in Los Angeles in January 2001.)

She’s doing security at my party on Saturday

The blog Inluminent, which covers matters of “small business, marketing, the Macintosh and other web based developments”, until recently used photos of scantily clad supermodels as a kind of way of increasing its readership (I have a friend to claim to read it “only for the articles”.) In response to some reader mail, the blog’s author has changed it so that the pictures can be turned on or off — the default is “off”.

I’ll admit to having used photos of cute people to spice up the ol’ weblog, but the big difference between the people in Inluminent and The Adventures of AccordionGuy in the 21st Century is that I know the people in the photos. That, and the photos are unretouched. Every single last one of my friends, boy or girl, is naturally a hottie.

My friend Mira, whom I haven’t seen in a while, RSVP’d for my upcoming party and sent me some photos of her at an open air shooting range, thinking that I’d be amused. I was, and asked her if I could post them on the blog. She said “Yes! But use only the good ones!”

Mira, they’re all good! I very much dig very cute girls with very big guns (and don’t we all?).

aiming

Doesn’t it look like she’s defending a huge crop of weed?

firing_at_lake_1

“It’s comin’ straight for us!”

firing_at_lake_2

Mira certainly knows how to take the boredom out of fishing.

with_pistols_2

This looks like a still from an ’80’s action flick, doesn’t it?

with_pistols_1

I would answer a LavaLife personal with this photo. In a second.

Thanks, Mira! See you Saturday!

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"I say you got to toast me!"

by Joey deVilla on January 29, 2003

It was bound to happen: bootleg DVDs of The Two Towers made in Asia are hitting black markets everywhere.

The first interesting thing about these bootlegs is that they’re not “screeners”, or in other words, they weren’t made using a videocamera brought into a theatre. These are high-quality direct digital copies made for distribution by the filmmakers to members of the Motion Picture Association of America in the hope of winning Oscar votes.

The second interesting thing is that they’ve been subtitled very horribly, which has produced some hilarious results:

More hilarity can be found at the Engrish TTT Captions page.

[Link courtesy of MetaFilter.com]

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This one’s for Liz…

by Joey deVilla on January 29, 2003

Liz is competing in Blogwhore II, which is some kind of competition. Apparently the more blogs you get to link to your name and the contest page, the better. Here ya go!

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Party announcement

by Joey deVilla on January 28, 2003

I think it’s time to throw another party, and this weekend provides a nice theme: it’s Groundhog Day (given the unusual cold, I can’t imagine the Groundhog predicting an early spring) and Chinese New Year for the year 4700. Better still, it’s my Chinese New Year — the Year of the Ram/Goat/Sheep, depending on whose translation you use. I prefer to use “ram” as the other two have different (and unfortunate, in my opinion) connotations in the West. “Ram”, on the other hand, is a great double-entendre, just like Shaft. Daaaaamn right.

(Of course, not all sheep are uncool: there’s the Black Sheep, and some Chinese guides will also refer to this coming year as the year of the black sheep. Sepaking as the closest thing that my immediate family has to a black sheep, it’s all too fitting.)

The party will take place this Saturday, starting at 9 p.m. at my place (as seen on TV!) and run into the wee hours as usual. Invitiations will be sent out later today. Depending on the response, we’ll fill one or both tubs with ice. In keeping with the theme of the party, I am asking attendees to wear wool sweaters. Given that it’s still 18 degrees below zero out there, it shouldn’t be to hard to comply.

Anyone interested in what my parties are like should consult these pictures.

And now, in honour of the upcoming year, the first of a few Ram/Sheep/Goat lyrics…

The Choice is Yours

by Black Sheep

Who’s the black sheep, what’s the black sheep

Not knowin’ who I am it’s DLB rippin deep

I wasn’t in your realm but I’m in your sphere

You still don’t know the click so just listen here

Trik Turner on the one’s DBX on the two’s

3’s for them off beat crews like you’s

back middle to the front don’t front

you want a good time were gonna give you what

you want, can I get a hey, can I get a what

can I get a buck buck you know that’s what I want

the styling is creative, Trik Turner is the natives

we can be violated or ever duplicated I got

nuhs from catch wreck and cousins of the

wize you know its no surprise that this shit

flies hi, yes which way, what, when, how, Mr.

Otto D. flip the track right now, I know you’ve

Heard the others wanna be dust covered but

Then again the choice is yours.

Where’s the trick at here’s the trik

And even if you wanted to you can’t sound as sick

Watch us swing like this why should we

Swing it like that because in fact what yours

Might hold us back – therefore, I ignore

I do as I feel as I trust in “D” He’s got my

Back tonight you know what I’m sayin’ yo’

Trik I ain’t play’n it’s easy to roll

With this than to roll with that

With no delay and see an actuality to one

It can not be, I made it look easy because

It is to me, anytime capacity was filled, tried

To rock it, anytime a honey gave us play, tried

To knock it, never was a fool so I finished

School never seen us sweat, and you never

Seen us schooled, out to rock the world

Right here from my block, don’t punch girls

And we don’t punch a clock, gotta go gotta

Go see you later by the cat and you can’t

Beat that with a bat

[Hook]

You can get with this or you can get with that

You can get with this or you can get with that

You should get with this cause this is where its at-

Engine engine number nine

On the New York transit line

If my train goes off the track

Pick it up pick it up pick it up — whack!

Back on the scene, crispy and clean

You can try but don’t lie because you can’t get with me

We be the outcast, can outlast, and outblast

Let this shit rip and feel the rush, crushed

Open your doors you best believe we’re sliding thru

Quickly, niftily we can make it hip to be

Down with this mess with two MC’s

Fuck what you heard we on some T.O.P.

I’m still DLB

So now I turn triks cause I’m the true player

Hold your coat cause I got the container

Pass the plate across the fader

Trik Turner gets played like a Sony innovator

Never the traitor party inflator

And you can get a scoop later

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Tell Hef to have a cosmopolitan ready for me

by Joey deVilla on January 28, 2003

I just got email from Playboy, and no, it wasn’t “Dear Mr. deVilla, please pay up or we won’t renew your subscription.” Here’s the important part:

I am a photo researcher at Playboy Magazine in Chicago. We were on your website and saw the following photo:

Photo: The now-infamous breast scarf picture.

We would like to purchase rights to use this photo in the magazine. We will pay $250 american dollars for one time english language use and we will give photo credit in the magazine.

Huh? “We were on your website?”

The optimistic side of me is thinking “Well, if I’m being read by both awe-inspiringly deep Calvinist theologians and Playboy writers, I must be doing something right.” The more realistic side is thinking that thanks to a lot of linking (especially from A-listers like The Reverse Cowgirl), a little Googling will show that I am responsible for this particular meme.

(This is the second major meme for which I am responsible. The first is “Drug Dealers vs. Software Developers”, which started with an email I wrote back in ’95 for a newsletter for the alumni of my engineering class.)

Unfortunately, I didn’t take the picture in question. My friend Karin was sent these photos, and she emailed them to me. I just posted ‘em here for your amusement. I’ll email Karin and see if I can’t backtrack and find the photographer.

Now I hope that the people at Playboy magazine realize that they’ve a got a golden opportunity to hire a clever, handsome, worldly-wise bachelor who understands their readers very, very well. Or perhaps Hef might be thinking “you know, I’ve never had an accordion player at the mansion. It might be nice.”

Photo: Me in a black Hugo Boss suit, with accordion, holding a mostly empty bottle of Freixenet.

See? I’d fit right in at the Playboy mansion. Bachelors don’t get any more eligible than this, ladies.

I like my cosmos with just enough cranberry for colour and no more, Hef.

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Cut

by Joey deVilla on January 26, 2003

When Jello Biafra last passed through Toronto on his spoken word tour a couple of years back, he noticed an excessively-pierced guy sitting near the front row. Between topics, Jello walked up to him and said, “Wow, that’s a lot of piercings.”

He then turned to the audience and asked “Ever wondered what kind of fashion your children will take up, just to annoy the hell out of you? I’m thinking horns and tails, they’ll think it’s cool, and you’re not gonna like it.”

That got a lot of laughs, but somewhere in the laughter was that nervous note that said geez, he’s right.


Some people ask why I’ve never gone for the piercing or tattoing thing, especially since I have some kind of a rep for being the type of person who’d go for just that. I could in all honesty say that we can rule out earrings and nose rings, because my large, round face just doesn’t lend itself well to that kind of thing.

That, and I hate needles. Really, really hate ‘em.

I’ll simply borrow a line from the younger brother from the movie Once Were Warriors when asked why he didn’t adopt Maori traditional tattoos to show Maori pride: “Mine are on the inside.”

(Besides, my large, round face already clearly says I’m a badass. In it, you will see the features that could only be those of a descendant of badass Chinese pirate Li Ma Hong. My Mom’s family traces their ancestry back to him, which explains a helluva lot about Mom and also why you shouldn’t mess with her.)


Anyhow, I was reminded of Jello’s remark after reading Megan Lindholm’s short story, Cut. It’s not a new one, having appeared in the sci-fi magazine Asimov’s back in 2001, but it’s a very interesting read. It’s not what a lot of people would consider to be “science fiction”; there are no robots, nanotech, aliens, starships, cloning or virtual reality, and while there is mention of computer, it’s just a prop, no more significant than a telephone or toaster. Still, it is about the future — in more ways than one — and how you’ll react to it might depend on if you’re about to leave your parents’ nest or starting one of your own.

I found myself siding with grandma. Damn, I am turning into my parents. Good thing they’re right-on people.

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Asian Farm

by Joey deVilla on January 25, 2003

For those of you not familiar with the lay of the land of Accordion City, I live in a tiny pocket residential neighbourhood bordered by the one of the Chinatowns (we’ve got at least three here) to the north and east. Hence our house’s unofficial name, Big Trouble in Little China.

Big Trouble is a minute’s walk from Asian Farm, the English name of a large Chinese supermarket whose original name was “Big Land Farm” (I guess someone finally decided to get the name translated properly). In Asia, the Chinese have a reputation for scrimping and saving, and the prices here reflect that. Chicken legs sell for 79 cents a pound, pork goes for about a buck fifty, with beef and fish going for only a little more. If you’re a cook-it-yourself type who’s also not a wuss, you can get fish heads and chicken necks (with bonus head) for a soup stock that’s miles better — and cheaper — than what you can make with bouillon cubes. And hey, they’ve got squid puffs! Asian Farm lets Paul and I cook healthy gourmet dinners for five for about a two dollars a person, a blessing given the underemployed circumstances we’ve lived in until recently.

The Asian Farm clientele is, as one would expect, mostly Chinese. You can do all your shopping here speaking only Cantonese or Mandarin. In fact, a lot of the signage is only in Chinese characters, including the most important one: the prices of the two dozen brands of rice they carry. I can read the pictograms for our house’s preferred brand, Golden Ox, and for when I really feel like blowing the budget and living large in the rice sense, Golden Buddha, the tastiest and most expensive of the lot. After Golden Buddha, Uncle Ben’s becomes the “bad touch uncle”. They get a lot of customers from other Asian countries; lots of Vietnamese and Filipinos do their groceries here and you almost always hear someone speaking in Tagalog on their cell phones.

Speaking of cell phones, whenever someone’s rings in Asian Farm, you’ll see everyone frantically looking at their pockets and belts, checking to see if it’s theirs. Like everyone else who caught the big sale at the Chinatown Centre’s phone store, I got the Kyocera phone (with built in tip calculator and I Ching!) and chose Wagner’s Flight of the Valkyrie for the ring used whenever one of my friends calls. Unfortunately, that tends to be the favoured ring of everyone in the neighbourhood from grade school kids to little old ladies, and there’s a mass self-frisking every time that ring gets played. “Aiyah! Not mine.”

Whenever I go shopping there, it’s like a real-life game of AllLookSame for the staff. They first try addressing me in Chinese, and my Chinese is limited to food, a couple of polite things to say to people’s parents and cussing (I’m really good with the cussing). I answer back in English, and after that, the conversation continues — the verbosity directly proportional to how much English they’ve mastered. They do try to guess my nationality, but strangely enough, none of them have figured out I’m Filipino. I don’t have the accent, and to them, I look either Korean or Japanese. The last time I went to buy pork chops (fourteen for less than five bucks!), the butcher concluded with a slight bow and a “domo arrigato” (Japanese for “thank you very much”). I was going to correct him, but then Ride of the Valkyrie started playing, which had me, all the guys behind the meat counter and a couple of people behind me in line checking their phones. It was mine.

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