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11:26 am | 06 July 2004 | the design that's GRAPHIC

Because "what I did this weekend" rundowns are boring, I'ma truncate it as much as possible.

Friday meant getting out of work early, drinking too much scotch, and doing New-Wave karaoke with live, eight-piece backup band, at Alex's Bar. "Just What I Needed," and calling my sister waaaay too late again. Sorry 'bout that, Tape. Crazy people said crazy stuff. I fell asleep like a ton of drunk bricks.

Saturday found your heroine waking up into a world of hurt. Hangover creates functional retardation and I shake like Kerouac with Parkinson's at the post office, trying to coordinate putting a money order in an envelope and then putting a stamp on it, clearly waaaay too difficult a task. I then visit the 99¢ store next door, hoping to find Lotería cards (yes) and an Indian headdress (no). But the real genius are these sad, funny knockoff cereals. I braved the glared displeasure of a bevy of tiny Asian ladies as I stooped to photograph them for you.

Left: Unfortunately, you can't see that at the top of this box it says CORN FLAKE BREAKFAST. Fortunately, you can take in the total majesty of the dubious spokeslion, who is a bastard son of Tony the Tiger and Tina Turner. Look at his crazy paw, gesticulatin'! He all, "Bitch, you best CHECK this cereal up in heah! It all CHOCKLIT!" Awesome.

Right: Hee hee! Cruncheeos are awesome! Look how sad and faux-Cheerios they are! Look how very much like the breakfast equivalent of a "Calvin Klien" shirt they are! Dude, they are totally like the t-shirt I had in middle school with slightly deformed Ralph Lauren Polo-ponies all shoddily printed up on it, only these are the sad knockoffs you eat. They probably don't even contribute to heart health, the way Cheerios purport to do. They probably have a disclaimer on the side panel that says "Cruncheeos: completely unnoticed by the American Heart Association."

Left: I find this, however, to be the pièce de résistance. It has everything you want in both food and design, to wit: a. An inanimate object, here a peanut, performing human actions or having a human affect; b. That action or affect having about it not only a whiff of lunacy, no, but having the stench of FULL-ON KARAZY; c. That level of insanity having generated itself out of a literal pun, in this case, "nutty" being both "containing or flavored by nuts" and "straight-up insaniac"; d. Font and layout action that was either a designer's in-joke or was contracted out to Mrs. McKinley's third grade class in Petaluma, WA. Looky the other nuts, bouncing erratically off the bowl of Nutty O's! Come on, you guys. That shit is fucking HYSTERICAL.

Also at the 99¢ store: Completely irresistible cowboy toy set containing pistol, mask*, and sheriff's badge**. I would like to also briefly take a look at this packaging, since I think that, in the end, therein lies the dollar store's real value: this idea that since products are clearly crapped-out and wholesaled for like 15¢ or whatever, there is clearly not even enough money to scalp some freshman graphic student into doing them at, you know, $6.25 an hour; ergo the POUND OF COLD CREAM I saw whose label comprised those words and a crappy, blown-out scan of Marilyn Monroe's face. Anyway, here's a look at my cowboy set:

Right: Check out the crazy font action. Despite is being a Western Cowboy set, you are still using a totally digital-esque font, superimposed over a map that reads Phare de Messine--so, apparently, a French map depicting Sicily that somehow relates to a Western Oh, wait, because maps, all maps, lead to treasure. And what are cowboys--Western Cowboys--but pirates on horseback? Argh! There's gold in them thar hills!

Left: Radical graphic of a bullet-hole, shot In...the...Old West? C'mon, you stole that bitmap from Barry in Cubicle 4, who's working on the Shattered Glass Vinyl Prank Clings, didn't you?

Right: A picture on the package which is nothing like its contents. I know, "Product may vary from image shown," but hi, the "product," including the Smallest Mask Ever (Without A Troublesome STRAP to Keep It On Your Fat Face)" comes encased in clear plastic, asshole. I can see that it varies. And boy, does it EVER vary! My badge, as mentioned previously, is lame. I didn't get any bullets, or holster, either. I got a lametarded mask that I can't see out of, and I have no baby to strap it onto. Also: The gun looks totally fake. I hate you, Western Cowboy Corp!

Later Saturday we went out for sushi and saw a lady's bachelorette party, where she had to eat whipped cream off the top of a phallic cucumber (carved with gusto, and wishful thinking, by one of the sushi chefs). It seemed lame. Good thing I'm NEVER getting married, and will therefore NEVER have to do any of that bullshit. Also: We passed a homeless lady who looked at my crippled friend and said "You ride a Harley! You SUCK A DICK!" Awesome.

Sunday I poked around until one and then headed up to Venice, where we rode a parade of bikes (and one skateboard) to a whole bunch of different barbecues, etc. Left: Raekool and I, totally unimpressed to be at a party on the actual boardwalk, while tons of tourists mumble stuff like "Must be the life" under their bypassing breaths. We saw soooo many cops. Some of them were on horsies. We were the drunkest bikers ever. I ate paella and got schooled at Ping-Pong, and then I walked all the way back to my car (it was only like two miles, but I like exaggerating). On the way home, different fireworks were going off across different parts of the Southland, miles away on either side of me, and I had the heat blasting and the windows down, and it was awesome. Super awesome. Then I wrote a poem and went to bed!

On Monday, after much hoo-ha and general mayhem, dithering, pawning of Marc Jacobs pants, and eating of fish tacos, I got a bike, the very #1 best bike ever, of all time, so there (c.f. Pants: "I just, like, walk around and cry because I can't be on my bike"). I can't wait to add all kinds of crazy custom junk onto it. I even planned out*** how I could conceivably get a little red tricycle and modify it into a kind of WAGONISH SIDECAR so that Guinn can go with me on trips, but that is a ways away (and requires an acetylene torch, which, though I can operate, I do not own). Last night I did some sweet painting on my bike, which I will share tomorrow. I have to feign industry for a while. clm.

* Which is so small, by the way, as to not only preclude its fitting on MY giant head, but which would only fit on the head of a toddler who had some kind of narrow-head disease, or maybe on a baby. Hee! Masked infants!

**Which badge depicts an eagle superimposed over a globe, and not the usual five- or six-pointed star with round point-cap thingies, you know, how you'd expect; this badge seems to speak less about being the lawman of a one-horse town than of TOTAL GLOBAL DOMINATION by Western Cowboy Corp, LLC.

***This means "drew onto graph paper." My attention span is too fleeting for any kind of actual planning.

4:30pm addendum: fuuuuuuck. Fuck!

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