April 2006

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you suck

(click the image to view close up)

you as in ‘yuka’.

freshly drawn on this sunny saturday morning.


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i washed my dirty mind with bleach the other day, but i still feel dirty.

i’ve realized that cleaning my dirty body parts (the breasts) is not as same as cleaning my mind.

this time, i worked from the inside by eating food that will hopefully clean my mind, eventually.

tonight’s supper is a three course menu:

1: red salad
2: purple salad
3: …white+orange+pale sage+french grey 70% salad

colourful food makes me happy. hopefully tonight’s supper will help me see things more clearly.

i’d like to tell you the exact recipe i used, but i didn’t measure anything at all. totally improvised. i’ll try to guess the possible ingredients and the amount that i might have used.

for the hypothetical recipes, click ‘more’… Read the rest of this entry »

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forget about astronauts, forget about teachers — the dream occupation of the 21st century is “wealthy farmer”.

as shown in the documentary “seven samurai“, farmers have it all! does our consumption-obsessed society drag you down? do you feel empty even after you’ve satisfied your materialistic desires? well, you are a perfect candidate to become a “wealthy farmer”.

the word “farmer”, by itself, is not enough to capture how great farmers really are. that’s where “wealthy” comes in. alert readers (most of you, i expect) have already realized that the word “wealthy” here does not refer to material riches. for the rest of you, i’m not going to explain exactly what it does refer to. just trust me.

let’s begin.

lesson two: 豪農

the first character is pronounced “goh”, meaning “wealth”. the second letter “noh” means “farmer”. so “gohnoh” means “wealthy farmer”. isn’t that simple?

it’s probably too late in your life for you to successfully become a wealthy farmer, but it’s not too late for your kids. when people ask your kids what they want to be when they grow up, they need to have an answer prepared. this is no time for hesitation! you can help your kids rehearse. for best effect, you should ask them suddenly, using a different voice than usual. after all, most of these questions will come from strangers or distant relatives.

–you (imitating the voice of an aunt or uncle): “shourai, nani ni naritai?” (what do you want to be when you grow up?)
–your kid: “gohnoh” (a wealthy farmer). your kid should answer quickly, without pouting. any pouting? minus 5 points.

you also need to anticipate scenarios where relatives will be unhappy with this answer, pushing your kids toward a more acceptable career. for those occasions, here’s a possible dialogue.

–you (again, imitating the voice of an aunt or uncle): “sensei ni naritai n desho!” (you wanna be a teacher, don’t you?)

don’t let your kid be intimidated here. teach him/her to stand strong and say:

–your kid: “uun. gohnoh ni zettai ni naritai”. (nope. i definitely want to be a wealthy farmer)

now your kid is wholeheartedly prepared to become a wealthy farmer. your future is assured. good for you.

one more point: notice the amout of sumi ink that i used for this ‘wealthy farmer’. extra ink expresses ‘fullness’ and ‘richness’. so don’t be cheap, use plenty.

see you next week!

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usually when i draw, i do it in one shot. if i stop working on a drawing before it’s finished, i can’t get back into it the next day. my mood changes quickly, so i get easily bored. if i lose interest in a drawing it may be weeks before i go back to finish it.

this time, i managed to stop drawing just long enough to take photos of my unfinished drawing, “laundry day”. you can see the finished drawing below.
i was invited to join a group called “art recipe” on flickr. artists submit their finished work to the group and link to a series of images showing the “recipe” they used to make their work. it’s very interesting. artworks suddenly seem more layered.

i wanted to put up a post to show my “recipe” for drawing. unfortunately, the photos didn’t turn out well, so i’ll join the group another time. at least taking breaks for photos helped my right hand stay happy and painless.

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(click the image to view close up)

is my laundry day. i’ve got to wash my dirty mind.

this is my attempt to draw a non-offensive drawing by getting rid of that offensive skin part called “breasts”.

freshly drawn last night.

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(click the image to view close up)

i counted. i have 36 of the same plastic doctor dolls. they’re each about 30cm tall, and their heads come off. they’re incredibly handsome. some people ask me if they are barbie’s boyfriend, ken. actually, they’re emergency doctor dolls that i found at a fancy $1 store in kingston, the one with the big red sign (now closed, says my insider information).

the doctor dolls came in plastic packages. they were nonchalantly hanging from the shelf. i instantly fell in love with them. so i bought three doctor dolls as well as two nurse dolls (like this one). when i got home, i regretted not buying more. i thought they’d all be sold by the next day, since i was worried everyone might find them attractive. at the dollar store, once it’s gone, it’s gone.

so i went back right after work. there were still 5 dolls left! that still wasn’t enough, so i asked the clerk to look in the back. she found a whole box. i bought them all.

on the way home, i ran into an acquaintance, a medical student. i was carrying a big plastic bag full of those doctor dolls and i had to try to have a normal conversation with him. “how was school?”, etc. i tried not to draw attention to the dolls, but it was impossible — the bag was too big. he asked me, “what’s in the bag?” i told him, “these are the doctor dolls i bought at the dollar store. they were so handsome i had to buy them all.” he said, “that’s great”, but he was smiling nervously.

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‘love’, ‘peace’, ‘good fortune’ and ‘harmony’…

these are the famous kanji (chinese characters) here in canada. they show up on tattoos, postcards, greeting cards, and even on t-shirts. they’re usually written in beautiful calligraphy. i’ve been in canada for years now, and i see the same simple kanji again and again.

maybe that’s all that canadian people know about japan: beautiful calligraphy saying something “spiritual”. people in canada seem to think we japanese are very spiritual. those people usually love calligraphy. i studied calligraphy for years and i like it, but i got sick of having to practice the same, unnecessarily positive kanji over and over. how boring. why does calligraphy have to be so serious?

i’ve decided to make calligraphy more interesting. i want to introduce people in canada (and all over the world) to new kanji. also, i want to remind everyone that japanese people are not necessarily “spiritual”. i will be giving weekly lessons in “quasi calligraphy”: unusual kanji that might not be part of everyday life, but are more interesting than ‘love’, ‘peace’ and ‘harmony’ again and again and again. some of these kanji (phrases) are new to me, too. (i’m reading the dictionary to prepare).

so, let’s begin…


‘u-chuu’ means “space”, and ‘jin’ means “person”, so ‘uchuu-jin’ = “alien”.

as technology improves, we must prepare for the future. soon we’ll be able to go to mars on summer vacation to hang out with the martians. no matter what country you’re from, on mars you’re the “uchuu-jin”. i’m not sure, but i don’t think english is the common language on mars (revolution!). so even english speakers might need to be prepared to introduce themselves in other languages (maybe for the first time!). japanese is one possible language on mars.

so: to say “i am an alien” in japanese, you say: “watashi wa uchuu-jin desu”.  and if you want to emphasize the fact that you are a good alien, you say, “watashi wa yoi uchuu-jin desu”.

you want them to know you’re on their side!

the martians will be relieved to find out that you’re a good “uchuu-jin”. they might want to know more about “uchuu-jin”. they might ask, “uchuu-jin wa sushi ga suki desuka?” (“do uchuu-jin like sushi?”).

you can say: “aho chau? sore wa nihon-jin desu yo. uchuu-jin wa me-puru shiroppu ga suki.” (“no, stupid! that’s japanese. uchuu-jin like maple syrup!”).

they might go on to ask: “uchuu-jin wa sumo ga tokui desuka? (“are uchuu-jin good at sumo?”)

you can quickily answer: “aho chau! sore wa nihon-jin desu yo! uchuu-jin wa ka-ringu ga tokui desu! (“no idiot! that’s japanese. uchuu-jin are good at curling!”).

there you go! you and the martian are best friends!

please practice the kanji you learned today. think carefully about every brushstroke, and imagine yourself as a true “uchuu-jin”. that way, you will capture the spirit of “uchuu-jin”.

see you next week.

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when you’re alone and life is making you lonely, you can always go midtown.
midtown, things’ll be great when you’re
midtown, don’t wait a mitute more,
midtown, everything’s waiting for you.
midtown (midtown), midtown (midtown)
midtown (midtown), midtown (midtown)
(repeat and fade out)

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my proxy

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me and my hard-working proxy.

this is freshly drawn last night.

UPDATE: i’ve made prints of this drawing, and postcards, available in my SHOP.

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“danger” is my middle name.
don’t confuse me with regular, happy-hopping bunnies.
i don’t hop, i loom…

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