Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Japanese Tea Garden, Jer off to Australia

The past few days and last weekend my old roommate Jeremy was visiting, he came from good 'ol Stratford, Ontario, and he's on his way to live in Newcastle, Australia for a year (at least). Pretty cool!!!!! So we had a great time here, and partied hard on the weekend, watched lots of movies, good times. But I think we partied a bit too hard, too many late nights, and I think that added to me getting sick this week. Also my clothes were all damp all day Friday from the bike ride to work in the rain, and I'm sure sitting with damp clothes is no good. Oh, and I did kiss that handrail on that dirty city bus... (haha, just kidding?!?!?) Anyway, whether it was cold feet (literally), or whatevskis, I got a cold. Boo. I was sick as a dog yesterday, coughing and spluttering and alternating between a cold sweat and a hot sweat. Good times! Oh wait, no, it sucked. :) I missed a couple days of work, but hopefully I'll be fine to go back in tomorrow. Today I stayed inside for most of the day too, but got a bit of outside time by wandering in Golden Gate Park with Jer, and we went to the Japanese Tea Garden and drank a good 2 teapots of Green Tea, so hopefully that will also help my cold.

Jer and his siiiick new laptop with an HD-DVD player??!!!

Jer outside the deYoung museum

Chillin' outside the deYoung museum

Japanese Tea Garden

Jer on the round bridge

Jer after making it to the top of the round bridge

Sweet Japanese Tea Garden awesomeness

Monday, January 28, 2008

Breakfast at my house

We all crashed here last night after getting back from the club really late, thank goodness for my futon and huge air mattress so I had room for everyone over here!! This morning Orion and I got up at a reasonable time, Orion went to get groceries and I started making coffee and getting food prepared for everyone. The food was soooo good!!!! We had a great time, then took off to the beach for a bit, went up the hill on the Great Highway and got some hot chocolate, and then we went to Haight Ashbury for quite a while. I played a didgeridoo in some random hippie store, we got pizza and went to a guitar store, good times.

Breakfast time!!

Making some turkey bacon

Then we made 15 eggs!!

Candlelit breakfast!!

Tommy Sunshine concert at Mighty in San Francisco

Saturday night we went to Mighty in the Soma district in San Francisco (website is here: It got off to a bit of a "slow start", but that just meant it took us about 10 minutes to get onto the dance floor in full force. It was inteeeeeeeeense!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Man!!!!! We were literally dancing like crazy from about 10:30pm until about 2:30am... a good 4 hour cardio workout!!!!! It was NUTTTTTTTS!! Good times, there were some really good breakdancers there too, and the music was crazy dance electronica stuff, not what I usually listen to but it was really good for a club atmosphere. It was awesome!!

Haha, I love the contrast in our expressions

Word up!!!!!

Workin' it on the way to the club

Everyone on the way to the club

A photo the bartender took for us

We found a table with a reserved sign and then did creative things with the reserved sign


Nice one of me and Anna

Bustin' a move

Me and Orion

Tommy Sunshine the DJ, this was awesome!!

Jer and I rockin' the dance floor

And... hip hop flava, haha

Jer and his sweet moves

Me and Jer, again bustin' a move

Tommy Sunshine the DJ

Jer is here!!

My buddy Jeremy from Canada arrived on Friday and we just chilled Friday night, had some Indian food and got Jer somewhat adjusted to California time. Jer was my roommate in 1st and 2nd year University with Matt, and Matt lives in Mountain View, California now!! Jer is on his way to go to teacher's college in, believe it or not, Newcastle, Australia!! He will be attending the same University that our friend Graham works at, and where my Dad was researching when we were on Sabbatical in Australia!! Pretty awesome stuff.

Anyhow, Saturday we met Matt downtown at the Ferry Building and got the usual Blue Bottle Coffee, chicken and fruit tarts, good stuff. Then we hung out for a while, got some Jamba Juice in the mall, check out some bookstores, and then walked up through Chinatown to North Beach. We went to Cafe Trieste and got some Cappuccinos and read The Onion newspaper while we waited for Anna and Orion to arrive from Sacramento. They arrived and we met them at Nan King for dinner.


Matt at Jer at the Ferry Building

Jer with a Cappuccino mustache

Out for some Jamba Juice

Matt and the Macy's "S" and star

Matt and Jer

Matt, Jer out for dinner and Anna being crazy as usual

Back and my place, Orion doing some sort of ballet stance, Jer paying no attention and just looking for his stuff

Jer still searching for his stuff

Friday, January 25, 2008

I like movies

Yep, I like movies.

That's why sometimes I just wander around on the RottenTomatoes and IMDB websites for hours, reading reviews, watching trailers, looking at filmography lists of actors and actresses that I like.

I found out some cool random info, here we go.

This movie looks cool. It's called Paris Je T'aime, and it's different stories about love in Paris. Coolest part? It's directed by 18 DIFFERENT directors?!?!? And, wait for it... one of them is Joel Coen, another is Ethan Coen, and it's produced by Ethan Coen... so obviously it's good. And there are like 1000 cool actors and actresses in it. And it's an independent film, and it only made $4 million so it's probably really good because the general public doesn't have the patience for it. And it has an 84% on RottenTomatoes. And Natalie Portman is in it (beautiful) and Maggie Gyllenhaal is in it (glorious). And it's about Paris. Sounds like a good movie to me!

But not all independent movies are missed by the crowds. Juno is now sitting at #4 in the Box Office (#3 last week), and already has made $87 million!! Awesome!! If you recall my earlier review, Juno is freakin' amazing, and just so Canadian.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The great Jutan apartment clean-up, round 1

Tonight was really awesome for sorting out stuff in my apartment. Sweeeeeeeeet. I've been needing to do this for soooooooo long.

I started by taking my Mom's good advice and not spending 6 hours on the computer tonight as usual. I seem to be so excited about all this free time now that I've been done University for a while... and I am spending like ALL evening on the computer after spending ALL day on the computer too!! Crazy. So I need some more balance. I am so excited about all the news there is to read, watching Barack Obama speeches, emailing people, blogging, Facebooking, LinkedIn-ing, and yadda yadda yadda. Way tooooo much of that stuff. It's really fun and awesome and most of the time I am learning and reading and gathering knowledge of the world around me... but a lot of the time I am re-watching a Simpsons episode I've seen 5 times since the writer's strike is still on and there haven't been any new episodes in a while. Seems like a waste of time?? Yeah, it probably is. Especially with the ton of stuff I need to do in the apartment. So, tonight was different. And I need to do some more of this balance from now until my apartment is in better shape.

I just had a shower, made a nice dinner, made enough food for my lunch tomorrow, took out the garbage and the recycling, shaved, finally put the draino in the bathtub, cleaned up my table from Chanukkah, ate dinner... and that was just in the first hour!!! Then... washed the dishes, put away the dry dishes, cleaned the counter and the stove, unpacked my 2 backpacks (including 1 which was still packed from Canada), sorted out the pile of mail on my desk and my couch and in my mail holder, recycled a whole bunch of ads and papers and Macy's coupons that I can't use anymore and too many JCC booklets and flyers and so on. So that's been a long time coming. Then I put new water in my Bamboo plant vase and cleaned my super cool new fancy cheese plate and spreaders that I got at Macy's and put them out nicely on my kitchen table.

Then it was time for more major stuff. I moved my bulletin board finally to near my desk, since I moved my desk a few months ago. I took down my 2007 calendar finally, and decided to take my new Simpsons 2008 calendar to work. I moved my Spiderwick poster so that I could put up my new Indiana Jones poster (yes, I know, awesssssssssome) in a nice place on the wall. Then I located all of my tickets for upcoming JCC events and posted them up. Then I unpacked my suitcase from Canada and put away all the clothes, the presents, the Henkels knife I got as a present, and all my other stuff I brought back here. Then packed away the suitcase and sorted out my closet a bit. Sweet.

So that is pretty awesome, I really did a lot of stuff tonight. And all of this in only 4 hours. Pretty awesome. I still have time now for some internet, but not hours and hours of it, just enough to do what I really want to do and not waste the entire evening on it.

Tomorrow night I've got a movie screening at work but I am still going to do some work here when I get back. I'd like to organize my shelf and photo albums so I have a good spot to put a bunch of other stuff I am going to sort out soon. Good times.

Here are some pictures of my recently sorted out apartment.

Cheese plate and table

Stuff organized on couch

Desk and desk area sorted out

Oooh new poster!!!!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Ratatouille gets 5 Oscar Nominations, 3 Transformers, 2 Pirates

Wahoo!!!!!!!!! Today the Oscar Nominations came out.

Notable Pixar and ILM-related nominations are:

  • Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
  • Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)
  • Achievement in Sound Editing
  • Achievement in Sound Mixing
  • Original Screenplay
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
  • Achievement in Makeup
  • Achievement in Visual Effects
  • Achievement in Sound Editing
  • Achievement in Sound Mixing
  • Achievement in Visual Effects

An Open Letter to the American Voting Public... from a Canadian

I just watched Barack Obama's speech to Dr. Martin Luther King's church in Atlanta, Georgia, in honour of Martin Luther King day here in the United States.

It is awe-inspiring. It's long, about 34 minutes, but definitely worth your time.

My response to the video... and an Open Letter to the American Voting Public...

I am a young Jewish Canadian living in America. I have moved to your wonderful country to live and to work, and to contribute to your country in a professional job, to volunteer and to improve this country that I was not born in, nor did I even grow up in. It is this message of hope and of the opportunity to improve the moral deficit of America that drives me in my relationships with my new American friends, and in my new community here.

Since I am not an American citizen, I cannot vote. But I tell you there is no one who could do a better job to fix America than Barack Obama. I have traveled the world, backpacking across Europe and Australia, and as a Canadian I have noticed and overheard so many people in the world who are angry with America... people who think Americans are arrogant and brash and worthless. America must change the world's opinion, and must CARE what people think. The rest of the world is just as valid in their opinions as America. America must take care of her own people, of the people at the bottom of the ladder who can't afford to eat or to get necessary medical care, and to treat these people with respect as we try our best to do in my home country of Canada. Americans must CARE about these people.

This kind of wide, sweeping change, as Barack Obama says in his speech, cannot come without sacrifice. People must swallow their pride, admit that they are wrong... and start the road to change and to the improvement of a country that is so great, and has the potential to be so, so much more.

Barack Obama is an inspiration. He is the voice of our generation. I am not an American Citizen, I cannot vote. But YOU can. Vote for Barack Obama.

Monday, January 21, 2008

In honour of my buddy Kurt "Phelpsin' it" Phillips, I thought I ought to post a link to his website,

He made this after I told him he was a good "breakdancer" many times, and it turns out that I meant he was a good "computational" breakdancer. Like a real hip hop star, just with code for output rather than sweet moves "on the floor"

Enjoy. It's Mike Wazowski dancing on some cardboard and a cool laptop. Hilariously awesome.

Volunteering, Guitars and Crepes

Today I volunteered at Congregation Sherith Israel, the other massively huge and amazingly designed Reform (though apparently more Conservative than Emanu-El) Synagogue in San Francisco. It was pretty fun, though it was too bad I got there kindof late. I went to help out with the monthly Hamotzi event which is making food for a local homeless shelter to feed about 150 people. Pretty fun and I was interested to see what kind of people that type of event would attract. It was fun and I met some new people and saw some familiar faces too. Unfortunately I got there kindof late and they were already done pretty much all the food preparation!! That was too bad, but I rolled up my sleeves and washed absolutely every dish and utensil that was used and I think everyone was happy about that. :)

We chilled a bit afterwards, got to see how huge the Synagogue is and the design was really nice and pretty similar to the big Shul in Florence, Italy. Awesome. Then we all ate some food together.

After that Julien and I took off to go to the Guitar Center, and I played the Taylor 914-CE guitar again, man it sounds good!! Ahh it's amazing, but it's $4000!!! Crazy. I think that is one of the guitars that Dave Matthews plays in concert!! Amazing. I also played a very cheap and very nice sounding 12-string Yamaha Acoustic Guitar, it was really nice, and man I love those cheap Yamaha guitars. It's pretty much an entry-level 12-string, it was only about $400 which was really surprising for the amazing sound. Pretty cool stuff. Obviously not an Acoustic-Electric so you'd have to pay the extra for that I guess.

After that Julien and I got some crepes and continued to talk about our general culture shock now that we are living in America. It was pretty funny to be discussing this (and politics, and other things of importance) over Nutella Banana crepes and an Orangina!! It's like I'm back in France!!!

Anyway, great day today and still didn't spend enough time on my apartment. But I did make my lunch and write a note so I don't forget it this time. And sorted out some other stuff including possibly an even better way to call back to Canada. It's getting late so I better get to bed. Fun day today, and looking forward to making my own Blue Bottle Coffee next weekend.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Chillin', Friends, Apple MacBook Air, Relaxing on the Bay

This weekend has been pretty sweet so far, Friday night I went out with Julien to one of the JCC random bar events, it was pretty fun actually, a fair amount of people there, lots of people to talk to and we met some interesting folks. A couple of the girls we met run a volunteer activity every month where they get people to volunteer to make some food for the homeless, and then some people volunteer to deliver and serve the food as well. So that is really a cool thing, and Julien and I are going to head to that to help out tomorrow for a bit. Should be great.

Today was just a bunch of relaxing, I went downtown to the Ferry Building, got the usual Blue Bottle Coffee and also bought some coffee beans today. I went with the one called "Giant Steps" which sounds pretty good. Then some chillin' on the water, and talked on the phone a bit, but then had some relaxing time afterwards just looking at the water and the city and away from the noise of the market. So that was good/necessary. I'm making a pretty intense effort to re-claim my solitude and when I work so hard all the time and I've always got things going on and people to see after work and stuff to do all the time, sometimes I really just need to calm down and maintain my sanity by sitting on my own and not talking to anyone and not running around in crowds all day. So that was pretty sweet.

I did a little bit of wandering after that, looked at Cars toys at a toy store (I have all of them), and then wanted to see the new Apple Macbook Air laptop but I guess they don't have them at the Apple Store yet, they are still in Pre-Order on the website. Man they look cool. Not sure if I am convinced yet that you can really successfully have a portable laptop without an optical drive... but I guess if you really need to store a movie, it does have an 80Gb drive... and you can always bring an external hard drive... or they want you to buy or rent movies from the iTunes wireless music store. Makes a lot of sense actually. And I guess optical drives are a big waste of space so it's maybe necessary to get rid of it to get this size laptop they have now. Then I went to the Adidas store and found a "ClimaCool" shirt that pulls moisture away from your body... i.e. a much better idea for my bike-commuting shirt every morning to work. Good stuff. Then a quick Bubble Tea and came back this evening just to make some dinner and chill.

Jess and Christy visiting me at work

Julien out in the evening and on the phone

Me at the Ferry Building

Mmm... Blue Bottle Coffee

I got the new Vanity Fair magazine with Indiana Jones

My new Adidas workout shirt

I love the new Adidas slogan, it is soooo awesome

Friday, January 18, 2008

Family Guy Star Wars Episode

I didn't realize that Family Guy was releasing the recent episode "Blue Harvest" on DVD!! Sweet!! This is the Family Guy remake of Star Wars Episode 4. Amazing!!!

Seth MacFarlane, the creator of Family Guy (and who does a bunch of the voices) was a really funny dude, I saw him talk a couple of months ago and he was just as funny in person as I expected... I guess you gotta be pretty super insanely hilarious in real life to create something like Family Guy, eh? :) Good times!!

Anyway, Family Guy is generally quite awesome, but this episode was "freakin' sweet", and such a good job of re-making Star Wars but with a Family Guy twist. So awesome.

Looks like there is some special edition boxed set which comes with this cool shirt (but only in XL I guess?) It looks cool but the DVD only is quite a bit cheaper on Amazon so I am not sure about the special edition boxed set. Anyway good times. Check out the art on this shirt though, so cool. It matches some of the original Star Wars posters, just with a Family Guy design. So cool.

Special Edition DVD, there is a part of it in 3D?!?! Crazy.

I love this shirt design

Looks pretty sweeeeet