Category Archives: Quirks

Quirks

The Fail Wailers - Fitzgerald's - Huntington Beach

6-Month Check Up

Hey hey party people! It’s been a while, hasn’t it?

Frankly, I haven’t blogged because I’m ashamed of the state of my blog. JUST LOOK AT IT!!! I know it’s been broken for quite sometime now and I have all the intentions to fix it. But I couldn’t bring myself to the computer. Part of that is also literal, as in my office is a total FEMA disaster zone with all the cosplay and arts and crafts stuff everywhere that getting my desk is like a Spartan Race.

As a part of my reorganizing, I can’t really put much away yet either. So everything is just kind of…there. I just need a weekend away from the couch. Ahem.

That’s besides the point. The point is for me to check in on my progress for the year on my goal. Aren’t you curious about that? May be just smidget? I know you are!

Run 5K under 40 minutes

Still a hurdle, this one. So far the first few races of the year, I’m still consistently at the same time. But I haven’t changed much in terms of training. So that explains…everything. LOL

Learn to make fried chicken

I have been in the kitchen a lot less lately too! Tamara has offered to teach me to fry some chicken so I must take advantage of that before she moves to Oregon in July.

Cook one new recipe each month

I’ve been whipping up new drinks. Does that count?

I’ve gotten so horrible with cooking, and California heat is not helping with that.

Revamp the blog

I bought a new theme tonight! It’s coming. For realsies.

Play piano/guitar once a month

Now THIS has exceeds all expectations. Remember that whole impromptu Christmas gathering thing? It turns into a band. Say hello The Fail Wailers!

We have tested the waters at a few open mic nights around the OC, but earlier this week, we played a 30-minute set at a bar in Huntington Beach. Not only did we not get booed, we are invited back! See you at Fitzgerald’s on July 29, yo.

The Fail Wailers - Fitzgerald's - Huntington Beach

Heather (The Voice), Ken (Dear Leader), Wyatt (The Beard). and yours truly (The Token).

Downsize and simplify everything

I’m slowly but surely going through the house and getting rid of stuff. We dumped the dinner table that my aunt passed down to me that I’ve had for 18 years. Instead got another Ikea shelving unit with a table attached. That significantly cut down on clutter big time. But I still have a LOT more work to do especially in my office. See earlier point about not having been able to walk to my desk.

Stop wasting time and energy on those who don’t deserve it…

Saying no is a powerful thing. I know that now.

…and spend more time and energy on those who do

Yet, it’s still hard to say YES! I’m clearing the deck as much as I can. But when everyone’s schedule is equally insane, this is getting to be a lot harder to accomplish.

One adventure a month with Brandon

January: Sycamore Mineral Springs & Avila Beach, San Luis Obispo.
February: Brandon’s first Race on the Base!
March: Seal Beach 5K.
April: WonderCon, Star Wars Celebration, and two rounds of Renaissance Faire.
May: Epcot and Kennedy Space Center, Florida
June: OC Night Market
July: We’re heading out to Brandon’s sister’s wedding in New Mexico.

So, we’re pretty much on track here adventure-wise. :)

Star Wars Celebration 2015

HarLeia Quinn and Jokerlorian. Live from Star Wars Celebration 2015!

2015-04-05-Wondercon-Disney-Photoshoot-10

Suit Up Disney is busy making business deals. Photo by Robert T Photography.

Read 12 books

I’ve developed a comic book habit, so this list is going to get a little more complicated. You wouldn’t think reading comic books should count as books, but when you read a series, it does take quite as much time. So, I’m just going to list everything together.

  • Currently: The Buried Giant – Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Ready Player One – Ernest Cline
  • Death of Wolverine – Charles Soule, Steve McNiven
  • Death of Wolverine: Deadpool & Captain America – Gerry Duggan
  • Ongoing – Thor (I’m on #6 and pissed about it.)
  • Ongoing – Harley Quinn New 52 (whenever it comes back)
  • Ongoing – Spider-Gwen (Well…not much longer. We’re not digging the direction of where this is going.)
  • Ongoing – Silk (…we like her more, actually.)
  • Incoming – Groot, drawn by one of my favorite people, Brian Kesinger!
  • Incoming – Mini Marvel, drawn by one of my favorite artists, Scotty Young!

I still have a bunch of classics I want to read on my shelf along with a few business books. Next on my list is finishing The American Gods before the TV series come out.

Now, back to you. What have y’all been up to these past 6 months?

OakMonster.com - Justin Davidson Photography - Wolverine of the Bombshell Avengers

Day 9: Wolverine Doesn’t Care About Calorie Counting

5 Thoughts

….well, screw the five thoughts for today. I have ONE major rant.

Whoever said that keeping a food journal and tracking your calorie intake is good for your diet must really and truly hate food, and therefore hate life.

I mean, look at me. I have NEVER felt guilty about my food choices or what I eat. For the past few days, I have been anxious and upset over the fact that I’ve exceeded the 1,550 calories per day limit MyFitnessPal had given me. Sure, I gave myself room to be able to go up to 1,773 as it is an average of all the of daily calorie limits I gathered in my pre-challenge research. But by merely looking at the negative numbers in red on MyFitnessPal, I feel the scarlet numbers burning on my chest.

-200.

-267.

Hester Prynne ain’t got nothing on me with those letters. Check out my extra calories, bitch!

And all of the sudden, I felt fat and defeated.

Have you ever heard me talk about gaining weight or feeling guilty about food? I thought so!

See what this calorie counting business is doing to my psychological welling being and sense of self?  And I am NOT supposed to feel guilty about food and eating especially if I’m eating SEVEN times a day! Effin’ eh.

So yes. I hope I come out this without gaining a permanent eating disorder.

Sheesh…

Today’s Photo

While I was already feeling guilty about my supper choice at Deli News before I even entered it into the app, I immediately sought retail therapy at Amazing Comics next door, and bought myself two more books to add to my Intro to Wolverine collection.

I think I might be a little obsessed after having cosplayed him at Wonder Con (as featured on The Mary Sue).

OakMonster.com - Justin Davidson Photography - Wolverine of the Bombshell Avengers

And you know what? Wolverine would NOT be caught dead worrying about his weight or his calorie intake.

Damn right, bub.

I’m motherfuckin’ Wolverine. I can handle this.

Breakfast

Half of Jamba Juice Sweet Belgian Waffle and half of Jamba Juice Carrot Orange Fusion, small, with C and Zinc, and 3G Caffeine booster.

I cheated a little bit today by going to Jamba Juice and splitting the orders to cover my first three meals.

Second Breakfast

The other half of that waffle.

Elevensies

The other half of that smoothie.

Lunch

The last little bit of the prime rib and corn on the cobb from Wednesday night.

Afternoon Tea

A few pieces of Hot Cheetos chased by a handful of dried blueberries and a passion fruit iced tea.

Supper

Not even a quarter of the order of fettuccine alfredo with chicken and broccoli…but I did eat a whole meatball. Heh.

Dinner

A few bites of Haagen Dazs Caramel Cone ice cream.

*

For those who just now joined in, here’s why I’m going on “The Hobbit Diet” of eating seven times a day for a month.

OakMonster.com - Geoff Boucher & Jon Favreau

Day 3: Eating Around A Nerd Adventure

5 Thoughts

  • I foresee interesting substitution meal and weird scheduling in the future if I don’t start the day with 8 a.m. Breakfast.
  • I’m getting hungry almost to the minute of my schedule now. It’s kind of creepy…
  • I stuck to the schedule quite well considering that I spent half a day running around LA on geeky adventure with my Team Wicket partner Christine. Hooray for Free Comic Book Day!
  • I fucking hate LA.
  • I did exceed the 1,550 calorie allotment by a little bit, but still within the 1550-1773 range. Considered that I was under the limit for the first few days, I think I’m alright.

Today’s Photo

Yes, I’m short. And yes, that is Jon Favreau.

The man responsible for this picture is on your left. That’s Geoff Boucher, alpha geek and now the host of The Nerdist’s newest podcast Humans from Earth. (Not on their site yet but keep your eyes out.) I’ve been following Geoff since his very first coverage of Comic Con for the LA Times which launched the Hero Complex blog and  the film festival. When he did the same for Entertainment Weekly’s Cape Town, I was there too. I finally get to meet him in person here at his third reincarnation at The Nerdist.

And he introduced me to Jon Favreau as his first fan. It’s kind of insane.

Breakfast

A cup of tea with sugar and cream and a nectarine.

Making room for Second Breakfast…

Second Breakfast

French toast made with 7 grain bread.

I had to wait for Brandon to wake up so I can make breakfast for both of us. Hee.

Elevensies

About a quarter of a Jicama.

Team Wicket was going out on an adventure so my plan was starting to get thrown off right here.

Luncheon

Half of Alternative Baking Company Chocolate Chip Vegan Cookie.

Team Wicket was on the move when lunch time rolled around so I pulled into a Taco Bell and grabbed a burrito. I took two bites and threw it out so I’m not counting that as a meal. It was disgusting. So when I got to the theater, I got me a cookie.

Afternoon Tea

At the Pig ‘n Whistle: Half a plate of fried calamari and half a plate of the Roasted Brussels Sprouts salad.

Hmmm….roasted Brussels Sprouts. So good. Sooooo good.

Supper

At Starry Kitchen: One crispy tofu ball, one piece of the clay pot caramelized striped bass with pancetta, and house cured roast pork belly XO fried rice.

Christine and I split the dinner and we both took home leftovers. Glorious, glorious, leftover.

Dinner

That other half of the vegan cookie.

*

ETA: For those who just now joined in, here’s why I’m going on “The Hobbit Diet” of eating seven times a day for a month.

OakMonster.com - Talk Like A Pirate Day - Krispy Kreme - Captain Bubbles

On the Universe & Being Shameless

It was Talk Like A Pirate Day last week. Since I’ve learned about the holiday 7 years ago, I’ve transformed into Captain Bubbles and gone to work as such. Every year.

Last year, I sailed to the township of Long Beach to plunder a pastry shopped called Krispy Kreme. Since I was rogue at the time, I brought the booty to my good friend Doctor Justin to take to work.  This year, Captain Bubbles, now employed, repeated the raid and came away with pastries for her shipmates.

OakMonster.com - Talk Like A Pirate Day - Krispy Kreme - Captain Bubbles

Before we took this picture, this little girl kept looking at me and told her mom, “Mama! She’s a REAL pirate!”

One of my coworkers asked, “Where did you rent your outfit from?”

“These are all mine,” I said.

“You OWN these? Why?”

“Because it’s my hobby.”

“Wait. I don’t want to know.”

Move along, muggles. Move along.

Then another coworker told me, “I just love how in-to things you are. I mean, obviously, you have your clothes. But you actually name your pirate alter ego and everything!”

I shrugged and said, “Hey, life’s too short to not go all in.”

She laughed and went on her merry way.

I’m serious, people. Pussyfooting around your life gets you nothing but a really boring existence.

You can quote me on that one.

Later that night, my friend Traci sent me a link to this video about how Hubble telescope was pointed to a spot in space that is utterly empty.

Except that it isn’t.  The light from 13 billion years ago has just now been captured. The “empty space,” about the size of a grain of sand held at arm’s length, has 10,000 galaxies, each filled with hundreds of stars.

That’s how tiny our existence really is in the scale of things.

We are but a speck in this vast universe. Our lifetime is just a blip compared to everything else.

The more the reason to not waste anytime not living your life.

I discovered as a child that it is more fun to NOT be shy. By being “brave” (or as my mom called it, a showoff), there were so many fun things I got to do.

Need a volunteer to go on stage? I’ll do it. Nobody is going to start the buffet line? I’ll go. Dance floor is empty? I’ll start.

I can’t even begin to tell you about all of my adventures because of me NOT being shy. (Or as my mom called it later on in my life, being shameless.)

It’s not “Oh my god! What are people going to think about me when I do this?!” that I think about. It’s “How much fun is THIS going to be if I do it?! Let’s do it!!!” It’s “None of these people know me and/or I’d never see them again. Let’s do it!!!” Well, the second doesn’t seem to work very well in the digital age, so it is now, “Someone’s going to get this on video, but I don’t care. Let’s do it!!!!”

My life has been amazing because I’ve long ago abandoned the concept of shame.

Let’s just put it this way, if I get hit by a bus tomorrow, I have no regrets.

(Well, okay. Not having been to Italy to eat would be the only thing on my bucket list that I would regret not having accomplished.  But I can make up for it the next time around, I’m sure. Hey, I’m a Buddhist. We’ll ALL be back!)

Life is but a blip in the universe, people. Live it well.

As Mark Twain said, “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”

Bring it.

OakMonster.com - Otto and Victoria Cosplay

Friendship is Magic

I was told a few times that my life would make for a great reality television show.  All the things I do are fascinating, they say.  I am quite certain someone else’s life is probably a hell of a lot more interesting than mine. But mine really ain’t that bad.

But none of that fun stuff wouldn’t happen without my awesomely diverse group of friends I have come to know.

I mean, what got me to write this post is this twitter conversation.

OakMonster.com - Scorpion Chile

Sure. You’d laugh at that little miscommunication about a recipe for the world’s hottest chile pepper.  But the thing is Aric CAN actually secure me scorpions.  His question is 100% valid despite the misunderstanding of chile being a pepper and not the stuff you put on your hot dog.

(And later on, another friend also sent me a link to a Trinidad Scorpion Chile recipe.)

“Only Oakley would have a friend who does THAT!”  Whatever THAT is, is something uncommon to the general population.

I hear that a lot.

For example, I have a friend who is…

a dark fashion photographer.

“The Bacon Vixen” who makes bacon candies and unique ice cream.

…an award winning home brew master.

an artisan jam maker.

…a bow hunter.

…a jazz musician who can play just about any instrument handed to him including a didgeridoo.

…a flash mob professional.

…an ER doctor.

…an armorsmith. Yes, he makes suits of armor. And more friends who can fight toe to toe with each other wearing said armor.

…a shaman in training.

…a retired drag performer.

And of course, I have friends in many flavors of tech geeks and sci-fi nerds including a few cosplayers.

My broad range of awesome friends always lead me into some kind of an adventure. There’s always a good story to be told.

I mean, like this one.

OakMonster.com - Quidditch

Yeah.

Last week, my cosplay buddy and soul sister Christine and I did a dress rehearsal for our Brian Kesinger’s Otto and Victoria cosplay a few days before heading up to Clockwork Couture, the steampunk outfitter and home of the TARDIS, for a book signing event.  Mainly, we just needed to know how much time it would take us to get into our corsets and wigs.

Christine is a HUGE fan of Brian’s work. Naturally, she got me excited about it too.  She originally suggested that I’d come with her as the TARDIS to her Victoria so we can recreate this moment.

Brian Kesinger - Otto & Victoria - Doctor Who

I thought it’d be more fun if I’d go as Otto the Octopus–or in this case, the DOCTOpus–instead. I mean, who else would think to dress up as an octopus!

However, I do not own a sonic screwdriver. (*GASP!*) At first I thought I wouldn’t need it, but the whole thing wouldn’t come together without the sonic.

Then Brandon remembered that our friend Lee has one. So after we got out of our corsets, we all piled into the car and headed over.

At a stop light by Whaley Park in Long Beach, Christine’s gaze drifted to the activity in the park.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa! Are they playing Quidditch?” Christine asked from the back seat.  I craned my neck around Brandon who was also looking over to see.

Before I could confirm, she answered herself. “They ARE totally playing Quidditch!”

“Holy shit! You’re right!  Do I pull over? Should I pull over? Do you want me to pull over? Can I pull over? Fuck it. I’m pulling over!”

And so I did and we walked out to watched a few last minutes of the game.

“Well, now I have to text Lee to tell her we’re going to be a little late,” I told Brandon as the team captain came over to talk  to us.

Brandon laughed.  “I think a girl who is loaning us a sonic screwdriver would understand.”

I’m telling you. My friends are fantastic. And my life is richer because of them.

Hooray for friends!

Oh, and I was right about cosplaying Otto, by the way. Not only was I the only Otto there, according to Brian himself, I was the first Otto cosplay ever!

OakMonster.com - Otto and Victoria Cosplay

More pictures from Otto and Victoria’s day out here.

Steven Spielberg J.J. Abrams Joss Whedon Will Wheaton

The Greatest Audition That Never Was

I scrambled into a waiting room full of hopeful actors.  A friendly face looked up and waved me over to an empty seat next to him.

“So, when are you going up?” I asked.

“Soon,” he said.

A few steps away, a glass door swung open.  A lady with a clipboard called out a name, and my friend stood up.

“Break a leg!” I called up at him as he walked by. He gave me a thumbs-up as he crossed in front of the clipboard lady.

The lady followed his line of sight to me, then looked down at her clipboard, then back up at me.

“You. The friend. What’s your name?”

“I’m Oakley.”

“You’re next.” And she closed the door behind her.

“What?!?”

I scanned the room and realized that everyone had a head shot and acting resume in his/her hand. I had my purse in mine.

“Um. Fuck?”  I started to rummage through my purse for pen and paper. “Fuck. Fuck. Fuckity fuck…”

“I can print something out for you if you have it online,” said a voice from the corner of the room. A girl who looked very much like Pauley Perrette, aka Abby from NCIS, was sitting on the floor with a laptop and a printer.

“That’s very kind of you. Thank you!” I said as I walked over and sat down on the floor next to her. “But I don’t have any of that.”

I’m no stranger to the stage, having been on it for some kind of a dance recital since pre-school. American high school got me in a few actual plays but I only had small parts. Some of them I mimed.  College was all songwriting workshop performance.  Then I did a storytelling workshop after college. That was that.  But none of these experiences were available online to print.

Then it came to me.

“Let’s just print out my LinkedIn profile and I’ll just write more stuff on it.”

The printer spit out a few pieces of paper and I frantically wrote whatever I could on them.

The glass door swung open again and the clipboard lady returned.

“Oakley?”

Pauley look-alike winked at me as I got up.

The clipboard lady led me up the wooden staircase.  We turned the corner into a dimly lit hallway with flickering fluorescent lights.  Then she knocked on the door on the left, and let me through.  It took a second for my eyes to adjust to the room before I saw its occupants.

Steven Spielberg J.J. Abrams Joss Whedon Will Wheaton

Steven Spielberg. J.J. Abrams. Joss Whedon. Wil Wheaton. And some other guy.

Al…righty then?

The dude I don’t know extended his hand, “Hi, I’m Craig.”

“Hi,” I shook his hand, and trying not to gawk at the rest of the room.

“Is that your resume?” he asked. I just handed him the paper.  “You know everyone here, I’m sure?”

My mouth started to say, “Duh!” But I made it say instead, “Of course!”

I tried to swallow my starstruck (starstruckness?)  but instead I regurgitated it in a ramble.

“I’m trying not to freak out right now…and I probably shouldn’t have said that out loud. To you. The Gods. But, um. Yeah. Hi.”  And, I waved.  What a dork.

Everyone nodded in recognition.  Craig then passed my printout to Wil.  He furrowed his brows.

“This is a LinkedIn profile…” Wil said as he passed it over to Joss.

“Yes, well, I didn’t plan on auditioning so this is the best I can do.”

“Well, there must be a reason you were called in,” said Spielberg. I shrugged.

J.J. passed the paper to him. “I’ve got to say LinkedIn profile is a new approach.”

Joss chimed in, “Not bad for someone who actually didn’t know she’s auditioning.”

“I’m glad I could entertain you. I guess?”

Joss surveyed his peers and then looked at me. “So you have never done movies or TV?”

I shook my head.  “Look, I’m a social media and marketing-communication specialist. But since I haven’t gotten a full time job in two years, someone recently suggested that I should pursue a career in standup comedy. I think that’s a nice way of telling me I suck at marketing.”

The gang chuckled.

“Well, thanks for stopping by, ” Craig said as he got up to shake my hand.

Spielberg turned to J.J., “Hey, J.J. Sure you don’t have room for her in Star Wars?”

“You know, I might actually have something,” he replied.

I squealed a little bit. “Really?”

Joss held his hand out at the guys, “Wait, wait.”  Then he turned to me, pointing, “But wouldn’t you rather get killed in the next Avengers movie?”

I might have let out a bigger squeal. “Ooh, can I die in Thor’s arms?”

Wil added, “Guys, she could do both!”

Yeah. Absolutely. That would be a hoot. Those were the answers.

I looked at Spielberg. “You know, when I was in kindergarten, a few friends called me E.T. because I was small and skinny with big eyes on my big head.”

Spielberg offered me his hand to shake.

And I woke up.

A dream. A total dream. Too much thinking about my employment situation and recent Super Bowl commercial, watching NCIS marathon on and off all day, and reading way too much IO9 and EW’s Cape Town before bed brought this on, I’m pretty sure.