Friday, October 27, 2006

Friday Haiku

I wake up in a foreign bed.
Bad hair day.

Monday, October 23, 2006

The mirror crack'd ...

Mirror, originally uploaded by nominally_challenged.

Well, actually, sort of shattered.

This one is currently under negotiation for sale. I'm pretty excited about that, if the truth be known ...

Friday, October 20, 2006

An Unexpected Visit

My statcounter tells me that I just had a visitor from, of all places, Iran! And this on a day when the clown posing as the President of that country is predicting that Israel is going to disappear. I know I shouldn't be too excited, but I've never had an Iranian visitor on my blog before, and even though I can tell that he / she reached my blog only because they clicked on the "next blog" option on the blogger navbar, and spent a total of zero seconds reading my blog, I still think it's pretty cool.

If, on the other hand, the reader was Mr. Clown himself (who, I'm told, actually has his own blog), then, Mr. Clown, I point my sculpted smooth Zionist tushy at you, sir, and not in a gesture of invitation.

the Birth of Venus

Egg, originally uploaded by nominally_challenged.

Or at least, my personal take on it ...

Go figure ...

Autumn brings out the handiman in me ...

table chairs, originally uploaded by nominally_challenged.

This is one of my projects for autumn (or "fall", if you must).

I have decided to renovate my outdoor furniture. When I say "outdoor furniture", all I really mean is "indoor furniture which, due to space constraints inside this apartment, has been rotting outside for about 3 years". As you can see, though, it's not in such bad shape, all things considered.

I took the table top off, and the wicker seat covers, because they were in bad shape, and now I need to work on what's left. I have already ordered a round glass table top, which should look quite eclectic, and I have paint to touch up (and protect) the wood, but I now need some way of upholstering the chairs so that they are (a) comfortable to sit on; (b) weather proof; (c) objectively attractive (and not necessarily in that order).

What I think would be best would be to get some of that mesh like synthetic stuff that they use for beach chairs, preferably in either a similar color green to the color of the stain, or in cream, but I'm not sure where you get that from.

Any ideas?

Friday Finding

Savtadotty just drew my attention to this blog. Apart from being totally cute (as per photograph), Lawrence is also the anthologizer of Kosher Meat, a collection of short stories about being gay and Jewish, which, due to issues of size and my cleaner's apparent sense of humor, sits happily on my bookshelf next to The Binding of Isaac, Religious Murders & Kabbalah - Seeds of Jewish Extremism and Alienation?, itself a collection of essays, albeit on a somewhat different topic, by Lippman Bodoff.

Lawrence also freelances as a translator, which, those of you who know me know that I do too (and those of you who don't know me, and who didn't know this little snippet of info up till now, now do), and has some insightful comments to make on the issue of painful clients, here.

Unfortunately, I don't know how to rss him (or many others, for that matter. Help!), so I'm going to have to just keep checking his blog for updates the old way ...

Thursday, October 19, 2006

It takes two to ...

Tango. And also to cha-cha, waltz and rhumba, as these guys prove. Be sure to check out their hippy hippy shakes on this page (which includes their underwear-clad interview and performance on the Naked News - not for the faint at heart, young children or the terminally homophobic).

I'm so proud of these guys. Firstly, they're the first and so far only gay couple to represent Israel in dancesport (which is what the ballroom dancing event is known as at the Out Games); secondly, they were outstanding ambassadors of our country at a time when we really needed all the good press we could get, during the latest war; and thirdly (and perhaps most importantly, for them), they actually won the gold medal in their event! (apologies, that link is in Hebrew) Which, for a couple who had only been dancing for about 6 months, is no mean feat.

By the way, Gur also has a blog.

You go, boys!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

More fiddling ...

Following up on yesterday's post, I have spent an (unproductive?) morning looking for the Japanese translation of "Tradition". Although I haven't been able to find the lyrics themselves, I did manage to settle the question I asked yesterday (which no-one else answered). The word they are singing is "shikitari" which means 'a tradition'. It actually does appear in my Japanese-English dictionary, but not in my English-Japanese one. Which just goes to show that sometimes, in order to find something, you have to know what you're looking for first. I'm not sure what that proves, but it proves something, I'm sure.

Anyway, the source of this answer was what proved to be an interesting article on Fiddler, that provides an interesting look at the musical itself, and its place in the folk-lore of American Jewry. (Particularly loved her "gay beats goy" comment, referring to Harvey Fierstein taking over as Tevye from Alfred Molina).

For what it's worth, the reactions I received (on- and offline) to this post were almost as interesting as the video itself, ranging from "F*^&%ing Brill" from the wonderful Stephanie, through chuckles and giggles, to things like "ohhh! I've got to see Fiddler again!", and finally, to the somewhat bemusing (and dare I say, condescending) "why would they bother?".

Personally, the video continues to enchant me. I was in an amateur production of Fiddler as a teenager (I was one of the sons, doing, by the way, the very same moves that the sons are doing in the Japanese rehearsal - even the original Jerome Robbins choreography is apparently a matter of unalterable tradition, it would seem), and it has had a special place in my heart ever since. So every time I watch this Japanese version (and I have watched it many times since first seeing it yesterday), I get a small shiver of delight - it brings back so many memories, even though none of them are Japanese. That's probably because the video is of a rehearsal and I can remember our own rehearsal pianist tinkering away on some plunky upright in a church hall somewhere as we plodded through those very same steps.

And as for the gay man's inexplicable attraction to musical theater, well, some things are apparently a matter of ...


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

There is something sublime about this



Update: If any of my readers in Japan (you know who you are) can tell me what word they are singing where the word "Tradition" appears in the English version of the song, I'd be most grateful. It sounds like shikaji or something to me, but I can't find anything like that in any of my (several) Japanese dictionaries ...

Thursday, October 05, 2006


Shoe, originally uploaded by nominally_challenged.

Continuing the somewhat narcissistic theme of displaying some of my paintings (which is also a convenient way of blogging without actually writing terribly much, today's offering is called "Bridges", for reasons which are self-evident to me, but may not be quite as obvious to the beholder.

And for those of you who are wondering - yes, I actually own that shoe (and the one for the left foot as well :) ); and yes, I have actually worn them. Both. At the same time. For far too many hours in a row.

But that is quite another story ...