Monday, 19 December 2011

Mystery Christmas Gifts

I have a puzzle that I need YOUR help to solve. Here's the scoop:

This past weekend I was in Edmonton for my girlfriend's Christmas family gathering. Part of this event is the "Tacky Gift Exchange." Basically, you get a cheap/ugly present put a $20 gift card in it, wrap it up, and everyone who participates takes one of the presents home.

Jen's brother in-law got this wonderful...thing for his tacky gift.

We seriously have no idea what it is. Nobody at the gift exchange knew either, not even the person who gave it away.

The best we could come up with is that it was some type of sushi thing. But that didn't really seem like a likely option. As you can see above, the wood grate on the top removes and has a shallow groove underneath. The little metal dish comes out too.

So if anyone knows what this is, and how to use it, feel free to let me know. It bothered me the entire car-ride home yesterday. Feel free to float theories as well, because I have absolutely no clue what this is.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Art Day: The Funkester

Here’s a long overdue Art Day. I can hardly believe it’s been more than a year since I last posted one!

Anyway, "The Funkester" is a really overdue piece I owed to a friend; He liked it so much he hugged me.

True Story.

Anyway, fans of Arrested Development will probably recognize this as one of Tobias Funke’s acting portfolio pictures. I scoured the internet for a large photo of this, but all I could come up with something about the size of wallet photo. This meant I needed to do a grid sketch, and then ink it. Here’s what the rough sketch looked like.

See the big improvement? But as always I’m never happy with the finished product. Tobias’ hands are too small, and I couldn’t get this eyes right. As they are now, they’re blank and zombie-like. I’ll probably sneak into my friend’s house and touch it up sometime.

As always, it’s a learning experience. This took somewhere between 8 to 9 hours to make, and I could easily cut that time in half. I think sometime in the New Year I might try something like this again, because it was quite fun actually! Anyone have any requests?

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Hammin' it up for a Week

My girlfriend is up and abandoning me for a week and a half, so I’m living like a poor bacheolor for the next little bit. Yesterday she was going through the fridge and getting rid of stuff that would go bad/I would never eat, and we did an inventory check of what we I have to eat.

  • 1 large ham. Seriously, I have like 3 pounds of ham to eat

  • 2 eggs

  • 6 Red potatoes

  • 4 lbs of white rice

  • 6 or 7 cans of tomato sauce

  • 1 can of mushroom soup

  • Some cheese

  • And that’s about it. I think it’s going to be an interesting week. I’m probably going to subsist off of coffee and rice. I’m not even going to act like I’m going to be a real culinary master and reheat the ham. I’m probably just going to tear chunks of with my bare hands while wearing nothing but underwear and re-watch the Farscape series.

    Soooo…if anyone in Saskatoon wants to be a real pal and hang out with me, that would be cool. I promise I’ll wear pants most of the time.

    I have ham we could eat!

    So much ham.

    Tuesday, 29 November 2011

    The Hammelltime Christmas Draw Extravaganza!

    Christmas Time!!!!

    This is the first year I've decorated anything at all since I was in Highschool, and boy howdy is ever expensive to be into Christmas. To celebrate, I'm doing a christmas contest!

    My girlfriend and I each decorated a christmas bulb. Have a look at the pictures below, and vote for your favourite on the poll located on the right side(not mandatory to win). Then, to be entered in Hammelltime's first ever Christmas Draw Extravaganza, just write in the comments section, or on my Facebook page that you'd like to be entered. On Friday I'll reveal which Christmas bulb won, and who gets a super-special mystery prize mailed directly TO THEIR HOME!!!!!! (Or delivered if someone I'll be seeing wins it)

    Here are the bulbs (I took two photos of the red one to fully show how awesome it is). Vote away!

    We also put up a really nice tree. Actually, it was a little busted-up, and as always I tried fixing it with wood-glue. That 8$ dollar investment a year ago in a jug of wood-glue is still paying off!

    We only had enough decorations for one side unfortunately. But that super awesome star? I made that myself.

    Pretty high quality right? Guess what it's made out of...
    Two beer cans, some tape, and a nail. Really classy!

    We also made some Christmas stockinga for Santa to put presents in. Jen's is tasteful...

    While mine has titties!

    Sorry about that Mom.
    Anyway, I hope everyone is having a good 'ol time getting ready for Christmas. I look forward to seeing everyone in Grande Prairie, and for those of you in other towns/provinces, I'll catch you in the New Year sometime!

    Oh, and don't forget to vote on your favourite Christmas bulb, and enter to win the SUPER SPECIAL SECRET CHRISTMAS PRIZE!!!!

    Monday, 21 November 2011

    Remember that time...

    Every now and then you'll figure something out, or come to a realization in life that makes you look back and think "How did I miss that before?"

    Well, I had one of those last week.

    I found out that I hadn't washed my hair for a month.

    Actually, make that at least a month. It could have been going on for as much as two.

    My girlfriend ran out of shampoo last week as well, and decided to use mine. She thought it was other that it didn't lather, and that afterwards her hair felt just as heavy and greasy than before.

    She texts me the next day and asks what I've been washing my hair with. I reply,


    I mean, come on, what else would I be using. Duh.

    Well, she promptly corrected me that it was indeed conditioner. Suddenly, everything clicked! So thats why my hair is so greasy if I don't wash it every day. Ohhhhhh.

    That really happened. How? Well, I use Head & Shoulders, one bottle for shampoo, one bottle for conditioner. I guess when I ran out of shampoo, I just moved on to using nothing but conditioner. It didn't really occur to me that I was no longer using shampoo.

    And that my friends, is how you forget to wash your hair for a month.

    On the plus side of this whole experience, my hair is fantasticly smooth. And when I actually used shampoo it became light and fluffy!

    I'd call that a success.

    Monday, 14 November 2011

    It Might not be my Cup of Tea, But...

    Today I was going to go on a tirade about Adam Sandler’s career. He’s got a new movie out, “Jack And Jill,” and I honestly thought it was a joke. I saw the movie poster ages ago, and I assumed it was a clever photoshop.

    But alas, it wasn’t witty satire pointing out how totally generic and mindless his comedies have become, it is an actual movie.

    From what I can tell, It’s about a regular dad who has a nearly identical twin sister. She comes over for a visit, and it turns out she’s a miserable klutz. Plus, there’s lots of that weird face-pulling from Sandler in this film...

    ... probably some jokes about poop, and some physical comedy that involves falling into a pool. It looks like a total waste of time and money.

    But here’s the thing about these comedies, Adam Sandler’s films make serious bank. I’m not kidding, check out his last ten releases:

    These movies I slander as brain-dead? 6 out of 10 are in the hundred-million ballpark. If you look at Adam Sandler’s top grossing films, combined they're worth well over a billion bucks.

    So what does it mean? People want to see this stuff! Critics come down hard on Sandler for making films like this, but if he’s entertaining people, good on him. I don’t have to watch these movies. At worst, all I have to sit through is 30 to 60 seconds of movie previews.

    So Adam Sandler, good work. I think your movies are drivel, and so do quite a few other people…
    …but I applaud your efforts. You’re obviously making someone laugh. Or, you're at least getting people to pay to see you in drag.

    By the way, anyone seen this movie? Anyone planning on it? I have suspicions that Jack and Jill will be the combo-breaker of Sandlers multi-million major-release comedy film streak.

    Blackstar Feat. Common - Respiration

    Monday, 7 November 2011

    Donald Duck takes some Hard Drugs

    Disney has made some weird stuff in its time. Before the mid-80s, it was churning out some bizarre-o films. One such film, is one I watched repeatedly as a kid. At the time I kind of clued in on how strange it gets, but didn't fully realize just how completely batshit insane it actually is.

    I'm talking about "The Three Caballeros" released in 1944.

    It's a collection of shorts about Latin America. In it, Donald Duck receives some presents from his bird pals in South America. We're introduced to a couple of characters you've probably never seen or heard of unless you live in Mexico, and learn all about the Latin traditions, past-times, and lifestyle.

    Educational, right?

    Right. That is until we get to the final chapter of the film, where it falls RIGHT OFF THE RAILS AND LANDS SMACK DAB IN THE MIDDLE OF PCP-VILLE.

    Apparently, not many of my friends have seen The Three Caballeros, and I’m not totally sure where my parents found a VHS copy of it either. Disney apparently released a censored and re-cut version, but the one I saw is definitely the original.

    Here’s a quick overview of the final chapter where things start to get absolutely loony. These photos are in %100 chronological order, %100 true, and believe me when I tell you that they’ll make very little sense whether they’re in context or not.

    So Donald falls in love with this girl in a photo. He jumps into the book…

    …and begins to dance around the sky, collecting starts to throw about in joy over his newfound love.

    She starts serenading him while he’s perched on the moon from inside a star…

    And suddenly the background transforms into guitars that close in on Donald.

    The guitars morph into kissy-mouths, which smooch Donald all over his face until he takes off like a rocket…

    And we enter the electro-realm of insanity in which Donald is a hummingbird who huffs neon flowers.
    One of the flowers explode, and Donald bursts through the screen, being chased by scantily clad women. Then, this happens...

    Donald escapes the women, and starts spying on them. His head rotates around 360 degrees to peep at all these girls who are searching the ground for Donald.

    Donald bursts through the screen again, and runs until he encounters a dead end. He turns around, and sees himself and his new amigos dancing, but with women’s legs attached to their bodies.

    Then all three of them leap up from the legs, which march away…

    …and come back with this horse-thing attached to them, which Donald and friends proceed to ride while singing “We are three gay amigos, just three gay amigos…” in a high-pitched tone.

    Then the screen goes all flowery, and we take a breather from this frantic action, to watch a weird flower-woman dance around, while surrounded by Flower-Donalds.

    Then Donald is transported to a weird desert with lots of cacti about. The Flower-Woman marches up, now dressed in Mexican clothing, and starts commanding this terrifying marching cactus army.

    Finally, Donald becomes a raging bull who fights a matador. The matador wins, lighting the various explosives attached to Donald’s bull body…

    And it explodes into a red white and blue “THE END”

    As a kid, I didn’t enjoy this part of the movie. It really falls apart here. It’s like they let a team of schizophrenic opium-junkies into the Disney studios and each direct one minute of the film. Anyway, you can watch the whole sequence below. There’s lots of crazy shit I didn’t include, so you’re welcome to enjoy this.

    I wouldn’t recommend taking a load of acid and mushrooms before watching this. You’d probably be a changed person afterwards.

    Sunday, 30 October 2011

    The Shear fun of Halloween!

    Happy Halloween! I really get a kick out of Halloween. This year I wasn’t sure I’d be making a costume or anything, but a little persuasion from my girlfriend settled it pretty quick. For no real reason, other than the SHEAR fun of it, I went out dressed up as a sheep.
    I bought a white sweater, a pair of women’s tights, a toque, and 3600 cotton balls from walmart. A trip to the dollar store for some eyeliner to paint my nose black, and some craft foam for my ears.

    I didn’t have any fabric glue, so instead I used wood-glue to stick all the cotton balls to me. It was heavy, and stiff. Jen did probably 70% of the gluing though. She's a real whiz at arts & crafts. After the glue had dried, I could barely fit into the tights.
    But, everything worked out, so once we had all suited up we hit the town!
    My girlfriend was a block of Lego. Everyone at the bar was super excited when she showed up, and accidentally started knocking the buckets off her costume. Tinkerbell was also present, and freezing cold.
    Finally, Wayne Campbell was there too. Except it was mature Wayne, who had long since cut off his long hair.
    And there was a dude who was dressed as a box of wine!

    Anyway, Happy Halloween everyone! I’m off to clean up the cotton that got everywhere. I covered everything in fluffy white cotton. Oops!

    Monday, 24 October 2011

    My First Brush with Crime

    I like living in Saskatoon. I really do. It’s a fairly clean city, decent access everywhere; the traffic isn’t bad except around the after-work rush-hour, and there’s lots to do every weekend if you’re inclined to get out and do stuff.

    The only pockmark on its reputation? My car got broken into.

    On Thursday night last week, the girlfriend and I went out for a quick drive to the store. I unlocked my car, and noticed that my roadmap, pop bottles and CDs that were in my glove-box and console were strewn about the car.

    Jen then says that my passenger-side door is slightly ajar.

    Well shit. Evidently my car had been broken into. What was missing? The GPS I’d left in the console.

    Whoever had broken into my car was definitely not your average miscreant either. My windows were all fine, and there weren’t any scratch-marks around the door or windows, so use of a slim-jim was probably involved (for those not in the know, it’s a tool made specifically to unlock car-doors). It more than likely took less than 20 seconds to unlock the door, and less than a minute or two to rifle through my front and backseat.

    I don’t drive it very often. Maybe three times a week. It’s basically for road-tripping and grocery runs, so it happened between Monday and Thursday sometime. The doors had definitely been locked, as I heard 3/4ths of them open when I hit the button. But, Fie upon me for leaving valuables in my car I suppose, especially in a car that I don’t sit in and drive every day.

    I should be thankful that unlike my family members and friends who live in major cities *cough* Winnipeg *cough*, my car windows didn’t get smashed, which is way more expensive than a GPS. I do feel guilty though, as it belonged to my girlfriend.

    So how does it feel to have your car broken into for the first time? Extremely unsettling. I felt weirded-out for the rest of the night. I even had crazy dreams about it.

    The worst part? It’s theft under $500 from a vehicle; such a small crime that the police wouldn’t even be able to do much about it even if they wanted to. I still have the GPS charger cable, but if that has the serial # of the GPS unit or not, I’m unsure.

    So take it from me kids, don’t leave valuables in the car. It may be inconvenient to have to bring your mp3 player, gps, or radar detector into your home every time you leave your vehicle, but it’s way more inconvenient and expensive to have to deal with having these things stolen.

    Tuesday, 18 October 2011

    Good Natured Fall Fun in Saskatchewan

    Fall means leaves, pumpkins, impending snow, and hoodies! And since the snow will soon be here, it was time to take in the fine autumn weather we’ve been enjoying out here in the Prairies.

    What did we choose to do? Well, Girlfriend and I drove for almost 2 hours to enjoy some Fall themed fun!

    We went to the Lumsden Pumpkin Hollow, located just north of Regina. It’s quite obviously meant for kids and families, but to hell with that! Neither of us had been to a corn maze or a pumpkin patch, and so we decided that we’d kill two stones with one bird.

    First thing we did, hit the corn maze!

    Here's the Where's Waldo moment of Hammelltime: Can you find me in this photo?
    The maze was impressively large, and apparently in the shape of a pirate skull. We did manage to get lost, but I think that’s because people had kind of made their own paths, and it wasn’t always clear if we were on a real path or not.
    They also had these “Corn-undrums.” Basically, picture riddles to solve during your maze your tour. We got most of them really quick, but this was one that I still have no F’ing clue what the answer is.

    The first person to solve it wins 1,000,000 internet points.

    After the corn maze, I fired the Corn Cannon! Look, a video!

    It was neat, they had you firing cobs of corn at CFL Team Logos. No Roughrider targets though, as that would be damaging their rep with the local fanatics. I aimed for the Argos.

    Next, they had this big giant pillow thing. You jumped on it. But something was wrong with it, and they cleared everyone off of it and closed it before I could take a turn with all the ten-year-olds.

    There were some hay bails to take photos in front of as well. But after the pillow got shut down the kids started jumping all over the hay bails. Since I didn’t want to be a total creeper and join them, instead I took the slightly less creepy route and took a photo of this hilarious kid in overalls jumping down.

    He biffed it and I laughed inside while he rolled around in the hay trying to get up.

    Finally, we decided to shop for pumpkins. By this point, we had learned that there was no "pumpkin patch," which was really disappointing. I was expecting some little-people farm with a field to wander in where I could pick a pumpkin off the vine.

    But, this being Canada, apparently pumpkin patches don't work like that. So we went inside the pumpkin store to find one. The best pumpkins had already been picked over, so instead I settled for a photo.

    All in all, The Pumpkin Hollow in Lumsden was some good Fall Fun!

    Angus and Julia Stone - I'm Not Yours