Yearly Archives: 2009

No Such Thing

I know that I need to pay more dues to assuage my fears that all which hold meaning to me are beyond my horizon. Sort of like being fueled by the fantasy of what tomorrow brings, or how art is better seen through an f/1.2 lens, or how a 4WD can take me far away into the desert rocks and snow capped mountains. There may be some truth to the matter that spending (smartly) on gear can take you places, and that there is no use in making money if you’re not enjoying it. However, my free time is spent fattening my ass in front of a computer instead of actually busting an ankle running the walk. Does the picture exist, if it is never taken? And what can be really shared of that imprisoned in your mind? I need to get out of this rut, and it’s a horrible feeling to be needlessly stuck in the world’s pecking order. Guess what, there really is no such thing as life insurance. Everyday is a gift to take apart, get lost, and find your way back all over again.

28 going 30

I was walking the dog this morning, when the security guy pulls up right beside me. “You’re Gopez right??”, and I say yeah what’s up. He says he was wondering who this kid was, and thought it might be that Gopez kid but that I usually had my glasses on, and going out on my scooter or the ‘hippie van’. Chatted a little bit, asked me what LMU was on my sweatshirt and told him about Loyola Marymount and how I graduated in ’03. Then his eyes got wide. 2003?? I told him I’m 28, and that’s when he totally shat himself and couldn’t believe it. And that girl who rides with you on the back of your scooter? Yeah she’s 25.

“All this time I thought you were just a kid who got out of high school!”

Exactly. Like that time I took Kat to my company Christmas party; we were the only ones carded at the bar and I joked to everyone that Kat was a senior in HS with a fake ID, and thought I was taking her to my prom. ;)

By Paul

Unfortunately, it seems that the snooze button shall never satiate my craving for a five minute but-feels-like-forever intermission from the real world.

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Which would be most useful? Slow motion, fast forward, pause or eject? Yet life affords all of these – of course, finding its way into your inconvenience.

Time for bed. Another day closer to the person you’d want to be when you wake up tomorrow.

Rainy Days and Mondays

Our weekend at Unique LA was a moderate success, based on the preliminary counts. On the first day, my estimate was blown out of the water since it felt a lot slower than last time, and by the end of the second day we apparently ended up selling more than 500 buttons! If I shut my mind up and think about it, 500 is a damn lot of buttons.

Hello, Buttons

I remember on Saturday night, staying up till 2:40am printing and punching 240 holes on paper. I sat in the middle of the living room carpet and thought about what all this work had meant, how my hands were trembling from using a hand-held paper puncher against very thick and stubborn glossy photo paper. How badly I just wanted to drop dead into a pile of ZZZzz.

At the end of the event, we realize that each dollar that a person spent with us, is a dollar that we truly earned. Not only in the time it takes Kat to design and tweak each graphic, but the time it takes to make each of them by hand. I’ll admit that it’s not a lot of ‘real’ money we’re making, but the real payoff comes in seeing people’s reactions when they browse through our display – a lot hesitant at first – and just like a kid finding a shiny coin in the madness, breaking out into a giant beaming smile. That smile, across everyone who managed to part with their hard earned dollar, is what we ultimately aim to achieve. To allow the tiny capsule of art to be shared, to be part of someone’s own experience and stories, and to make that connection with the rest of the world. Thank you, Kat, for being an awesome artist :)

What does FML mean to you?

And so we’ve been preparing the past few weeks for this weekend’s Unique LA show, with the new display setup and a flurry of button design making from (mostly) Kat and I. Today was the first day.

There was this one girl who seemed really friendly, and genuinely interested in how our setup was made. Magnets, and a little bit of glue gun, I explained, which held the buttons neatly against the varnished plywood sitting on an art easel. Cool, cool. So she goes over our buttons, and points to one on the table and asks, “What does FML mean?”. And so I basically explained that it meant F ck My Life, borne from this website where people write down the story of their life, and everyone else votes if the poster either deserves it, or if his life really does suck. So she nods, and mentions something about it being funny.

And then she said:
“Those are my initials.”

Beer and Art

The Friday was spent drinking beer with Kat, Booger and Cam at home watching the TV sync up with the audio of the “I Wish I Were A Carpenter” tribute CD (which I might add is one of the bestest 90′s CDs evarr). It was some show about parachuting from a plane to hit your foot against a small sensor in the middle of a landing circle. Anyway, the cut scenes and flying people made a pretty good pairing with the music. Afterwards, K and I toyed around with a few wooden panels, wood stain, and varnish in the garage as part of our preparations for the Unique LA craft fair on Dec 5-6. There’s something therapeutic about wood work, and I really wish I got into it more than just sniffing the fumes of the varnish out of the can. I keed.

Saturday morning was a long Vespa trip out to the O-Hotel in downtown LA where K and I attended a workshop/seminar hosted by Unique LA for their vendors. This pretty much got us all fired up to brainstorm on all the possible table configurations to finalize our table setup. Afterwards, we met up for a late lunch with Kathlyn, Dan and his family at Canter’s (damn good lengua at a Jewish Deli!), to celebrate the news that he passed the bar!! I should probably memorize his number in case I get thrown in the slammer and need to make that one phone call.

Earlier today, we passed by the first CTN Animation Expo and met up with Kei from Imaginism Studios. It was a smaller conference and a lot more intimate than Comicon in San Diego, but K and I were totally floored by the skill of all the artists in attendance. I really wish I knew what I was good at, but I know it’s the wrong way of going about it. Because eventually, you will always be good at what you love doing. If you keep at it. :)

Keep Walking

Nickel Walker

My time is always late, my dreams are always far fetched. My feet are always itchy, my needs are never met. My world continuously spins, like seconds on a clock. My life is never here nor there, just like my lost socks.

Neodymium Attraction

Another package of super high power magnets (strong enough to to make hamsters sterile and grown men cry) arrived in the mail today. I’ve always had a fascination with magnets and lighters, so I can’t wait to get out of the warehouse and test them out when I get home. Zzzap!

I bought several magnets a few years ago from the Gaussboys already, in a failed bid to create a very cool minimalist picture frame system using masonite and acrylic. Well, it hasn’t exactly failed miserably. I just bought all the parts and never got around to completing a functional prototype. Plus the masonite started warping since it was sitting in a dark moldy corner of my room. So I guess that does qualify as FAIL. Sigh.

This batch of mini magnets, meanwhile, is a set we are testing for the retail display of Paul and Kat buttons. If you are my friend or frenemy, please feel free to show up at the UNIQUE LA show on December 5 and 6. I’ll give you a free hug. Because I have lots to give! And then I can zap you with some hamster ball-blaster magnets.

Boo!

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The great thing about having 5 nieces is having 5 adorable ones to take pictures of. :)

No Juice

And so I jinxed it – I forgot my laptop charger. So now I have 4 hours of computing time to spread across the week, which should be enough for bare essentials. The great part is that I picked up an extra charger on sale from Office Depot a long time ago, so I have a charger at home and at work. And I don’t have either of them. Hooray!

Packing

Preparing for a week in Vegas for the SEMA show, and then our annual Death Valley excursion with a handful of friends in tow.

I need to create a more efficient packing system, in terms of getting what I need quickly, and figuring out the absolute minimum I need to bring. Although I have become adept to last minute crash course packing, the multiplying white hairs on the side of my head indicate that I cannot afford to leave the house without the damn SD card again. I usually start with a handwritten packing list, but it seems like it gets longer each trip I take…

Peek-a-boo

I’d rather just hop on, and go. Far. Away.

Home

There is this heaviness in my heart that I can’t reconcile, and I’m resigned to the fact that the answers may forever elude me. Each day, I think about you, each morning that I wake up, each night before I succumb to slumber. The longest two months of my life, and how can I say that it’ll ever be better when I know that our catching up will be at the end of our lives?

I miss you, Alexis. I hope you and Nika are finally home.