Thursday, July 21, 2011

Magic notebooks and Early Music

In the summer of 2002, I was set up with a guy who slept with a ferret in his bed.  I didn't know that before I met him, but as soon as I found out, it was the only thing I could think about, and kind of grossed me out.  I feel like a hypocrite because I sleep with cats in my bed, and both species lick their butts, but cats have the advantage of being cute, and not being ferrets.

Anyway, two things about my long introductory date (he lived in Ohio and I drove out over Labor Day weekend) have stayed with me.

First, he was (and still is, I might add) the only guy who ever surprised me with a carpet of rose petals.  Now that I'm 35 and jaded, it makes me think it was a nice trick he uses on all the new girls he meets, but at the time it was the most romantic thing I'd ever seen, and made me feel like I was in a soap opera.

Second, he introduced me to, a probably-offensive, not politically correct (but utterly hilarious) website that makes fun of the English translations on Asian products.  For example, this Christmas card:

Have you "done" a nice boy & girl?  Really?  

Oh, you can have hours of fun looking at  

So this week I'm up in San Mateo at my office, and I was going into the city tonight because the San Francisco Bach Festival is going on, and I can't pass up an opportunity to hear some Telemann played on original instruments.  I'm a geek like that.

I decide to utilize my yelp app and find a stationary store nearby, because it's been a long time since I've gone on a pen-binge, and I'm due for one; and anyway, I had an hour to kill before the concert, and what better way is there to kill an hour than to look at pens?

So I am led to a Japanese shopping mall that has both the Japanese equivalent of a Barnes and Noble (two stories, lots of browsing) and a massive stationary store.  My Japanese twin nearly exploded with glee.

I got a crapload of pens I don't need:

but the things I want to share particularly, are the engrish notebooks.

This one reads: Choose!  Not be a consumer, but be a smart consumer.  If current consumption would expand and a variety of floras & faunas would be extinct, human beings would be next!  

Holy shit, that puts the fear of God in me.  What am I supposed to do if, say, I'm a kid taking notes in class, and suddenly the realization hits me that the entire human race could be destroyed because my friends didn't buy the right notebook and the floras and faunas were all going to be extinct.  That's a panic attack just waiting to happen right there, that is.

This little beauty says, Comedian? Please have a wonderful time with this notebook.  The story of pleasant animals.

So hang on, what if I'm not a comedian?  Can I still have a wonderful time with the notebook, or do I need to have a crappy time with it?  And what if I don't write the story of pleasant animals in it?  What if I don't even like animals, much less think they're pleasant?  What then?  Do I need to get another notebook?  Will this one explode?  

But seriously, anything can be funny if you take two mice, draw some bow-ties on them, stick a microphone in front, and make it look like they're doing stand up at The Comedy Store.  You could have written anything up there on top, and I wouldn't care because I'm so enchanted by the Jerry Seinfeld mice.

Keeping up the trend of using cute animals, we have this furry little thing, with a caption that reads, A pleasant memory and beautiful scenery.  There are a lot of unforgettable things in everyday life.  and at the bottom we have, I write an important thing, and do not let's finish.  A way of writing seems to be for freedom and oneself.

WTF?  Is that supposed to even mean anything?  The unforgettable things in everyday life, I get.  That's fine.  Cute kitten, unforgettable every day life...I'm with all of that.  But what the hell is that last part?  I write an important thing and do not let's finish?  In a metaphysical way, it sort of reminds me of an 8am Philosophy 101 class I took as a freshman in college.  While the professor talked about Socrates and riddles, I tried to memorize all the Presidents.  It gets so murky after the Civil War.  Does anybody know who James K Polk even was?  Who gets elected with a name like that?  I think he's a Made Up President, just to give kids more names to remember.

Finally, this one is my favorite.  Note Book personal.  Most advanced quality gives best writing features and gives satisfaction to you.  Ok, first, what are these advanced writing features?  It looks like a normal narrow-ruled notebook to me.  Does it make my coffee for me?  Does more paper appear when you run out?  How can paper have advanced writing features?  And I'm wondering whether maybe somebody ought to send one to Mick Jagger, too?!

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