Friday, October 24, 2014

K-pop Book Giveaway!

Tuttle Publishing has been kind enough to let me do a giveaway for two people to win a copy of the K-POP Now! paperback book that I reviewed in my video today.


A brief rundown of the rules: This will be a random sweepstakes. Two people will be chosen at random to win a copy of the K-POP Now! book. And all you have to do to enter is provide your name and email address in the widget below so I can contact you if you win. I also set it up so you can enter once per day, but if you have multiple email addresses, please only enter with one of them.

The sweepstakes ends on October 31st, 2014 at 12:00 a.m. Central Time (US). For the complete details, click "Terms and Conditions" on the widget below, because entering means you agree to them!

You can hear my thoughts on the book in the video at the bottom of this entry (below the widget), as well as get some visuals of it. Even if you aren't a fan of K-pop, this book could be the perfect thing to get you started. (b~_^)b

UPDATE: The contest is over and the winners have been randomly chosen on Rafflecopter.com! Thanks to everyone who entered. By the end, over 500 people had entered, which is awesome. And congratulations to the winners, Chase and Sarah! :)

You can still check out the book below!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Halloween came early for my face

I've been feeling so much better this week. Unfortunately, right when I was getting over being sick, I had an allergic reaction to something and my face exploded. Since I haven't doodled in ages, I created this illustration to show what I've looked like this week:

My friend tells me I never really looked like this, so maybe it's more so how I felt.
Or maybe my friend is a liar.

If this had happened a week later, I wouldn't have even needed a Halloween costume.

I take a lot of pride in taking care of my skin, so it's been a blow to my self-confidence that the reaction left me with this rash. While I've felt physically fine, I haven't wanted to leave the house or get in front of the camera for the past week. Thanks to some healing ointments and creams, the majority of the problems were gone after about a day, but I've still been obsessing over getting it healed completely.

Since I haven't felt much like going out during the day, I've been going out at night for little walks and to get some fresh air. (I'm just now realizing this entry totally makes me sound like a vampire. It's a fair comparison.) On one of my walks, I looked up and remembered that stars exist (I made a bad grade in Astronomy in college so I tend to forget stars are up there), so I downloaded the Google Sky Map app so I could start learning the names of the brightest stars just in case I ever needed to sound smart in a conversation. Seeing as how I don't like driving at night or straying too far from home once it gets dark, I'm not sure when I'll ever be in a situation where I'm surrounded by people outside at night. But that doesn't stop me from imagining myself at a dinner party out on a lawn where the conversation goes something like this:
[Scene: Group of fancy people outside in ball gowns and tuxedos drinking champagne and talking, probably in British accents] 
Fancy gentleman: Oh my, the stars sure are shining brightly on this clear night. 
Fancy lady: Why yes, just look at that one. [Gestures towards star] It appears to be twinkling. 
Me: [Speaking casually] That, my dear, is Vega--the brightest star in the Lyra constellation and fifth brightest star in the night sky. [Takes slow sip of champagne] 
Everyone else: [Impressed murmurs and delighted clapping]

Anyway, knowing the names of the stars led me to looking them up on Wikipedia. Which led me to various other space-related Wikipedia pages. Which led me to feeling so incredibly tiny compared to everything else. Which finally resulted in an Internet overload-induced existential crisis. So even if I ever get invited to a fancy nighttime dinner party, I'll probably be too busy having a breakdown to go.

Other than that, I've passed the time by replaying Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness (which is my least favorite Tomb Raider game but wasn't as bad as I remember it being when I was younger), becoming addicted to various phone games (including BrainWars, the Sailor Moon game for android, and Beat MP3), cleaning out my closet, searching for vintage Furbys on eBay (I really want one of the green ones from 1998, which is the first one I ever had), and, as usual, trying to figure out what to do with my life (with no success). Videos return on Monday.

-joe

Friday, October 10, 2014

Review: JOR Underwear from MensUnderwearStore.com

This entry contains a non-paid review of a product. This means I wasn't paid for reviewing it, but I was sent the product for free after agreeing to write an honest review. You can read more about these types of things on my Disclaimer page.

I'm still a bit under the weather today, so I thought I'd finally write up a review of some undies I got a while back. I meant to post this ages ago, but it was during the time I was moving from San Francisco and it slipped my mind. But that's all for my brief excuse. (Did you catch that underwear pun? I'm more proud of it than I probably should be.)

Anyway, a couple months ago I reviewed some underwear I'd been sent from MensUnderwearStore.com. If you'll recall, it was my first pair of fancy underwear and I was quite pleased, aside from the color (which wasn't quite gay enough for me), and also my legs were a little too scrawny to fill out the leg holes. (Google keeps trying to autocorrect "leg holes" to "Legolas" which is making me imagine Legolas in that underwear, which is just fine with me.)

Please tell me people walk around
in these in Brazil
This time around, I was asked if I'd like to pick out a pair of underwear I thought suited me better. So I browsed around the site and chose the most colorful pair that claimed to have the smallest waist size. And those were the JOR Carioca Boxers. (Once again, you won't see pics of me in them in this review, but the model looks better anyway, so you're better off checking that out.)

The first thing I noticed when they arrived was the pattern, which is clearly amazing. I have to assume this underwear was designed by a fellow homosexual with great taste. This is the kind of underwear you'd wear while marching in a pride parade. Or when you're out walking around in Brazil in just your undies (which I like to imagine happens often in Brazil, especially in the case of Brazilian models). Or, you know, just underneath your daily clothes to make you feel special, which is how I'll be wearing them.

In my previous underwear review I'd specifically picked out a pair that didn't have a noticeable pouch because I was afraid of getting too wild during my first foray into the world of fancy underwear. This time, however, I decided to give the pouch a go. I was worried it was going to be too bulgy and weird, but it actually turned out to be my favorite thing about these. The pouch is, like, freakishly comfortable. I won't go into intimate details, so I'll try a metaphor. You know how text can be aligned differently in word processing programs? Well, if your junk was the text, the pouch would be a nice, firm center alignment. I'm not sure that really makes sense. Maybe some guys will understand. But it's a good thing. A very good thing.

Fancy underwear packaging
always impresses me
I requested a size small, which the site says fits waist sizes of 26"-28", but it fits my 24" waist just fine and is comfortably stretchy. However, just like the previous pair I reviewed, the legs flare out just a tiny bit and don't completely conform to my body like on the model, but it isn't as bad as the last pair and is probably only noticeable to me. Again though, I think this has more to do with me being just way too skinny than it does with the underwear being too big. Unless you also weigh 95 lbs. like me and look like the next strong breeze is gonna take you away, you'll probably be fine. Also, since I've had this pair for a month or so and have washed them a few times, I can also attest to them holding their shape, even though I tend to fry my clothes in the dryer. So that's always a plus.

Overall, this is probably my favorite pair yet, simply because of the pouch. I'm actually kinda pissed nobody ever told me how comfortable pouched underwear is. Oh, also the color is fab, of course, and I should mention they have a few other designs on the site, too, you know, if you don't want to be quite as flashy as me (although I don't know why you wouldn't). So thanks again to MensUnderwearStore for another great pair of undies. Now go look at the model on the JOR page because he's hot. I kinda wish they'd send me one of the models to review, but I guess that would be weird or inappropriate or whatever.

-joe

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Fever dreams & kawaii things

(The title of this entry is supposed to be like the title of Uffie's first album, Sex Dreams and Denim Jeans. But then it occurred to me that it's not even a good reference and the album wasn't that popular, so maybe people wouldn't catch it. And it also occurred to me that I weave way too many awful puns into my titles and I always end up explaining them so maybe I should just write normal titles. But that probably won't happen.)

It's the first week of me doing daily videos. And I've been sick almost all week. Luckily, I'd filmed the Monday-Wednesday videos in advance, so those still went up. I tried my hardest to film Thursday's video last night, but I felt way too bad, so I'm gonna have to take Thursday and Friday off and start fresh on Monday.

I feel extra sucky because, like I said, this my first week doing daily videos, and I'm already having to take some time off, but I also don't want to upload anything that I'm not 100% happy with. The reason my new video intro has my signature on it is because I only put my name on things I'm fully satisfied with, and I wanted to make sure my videos always met that standard. If I tried to make a video right now, feeling as bad as I do, I don't think it should have my signature on it. Plus, nobody needs to see me looking like a herd of elephants just trampled over me. Or, rather, I don't want anyone seeing me like this.

I slept on and off most of the day yesterday and kept having this recurring fever dream about finding lots of kittens underneath my bed. Usually, I'd think finding kittens is great, but then I started finding entire families under my bed, too. Like, human families. Mothers and fathers and their kids and a few grandparent-y people, too. All under my bed with lots of kittens. It was disconcerting. So I googled what all this could mean and found some dream dictionaries.

Apparently, dreaming about kittens can mean a lot of different things, from being afraid of not being perfect to caring too much. I can deal with that. Also, the Internet tells me pregnant women dream about kittens a lot. I'm assuming I'm not pregnant, though. It usually takes two people to accomplish something like that and, as many people as there are under my bed in my dreams, there's definitely nobody on top of it with me in real life. Also, I don't have a uterus.

I couldn't, however, find anything in the dream dictionaries about entire families of people living underneath your bed. I'm gonna assume the dream dictionaries simply weren't detailed enough, and not that it's just so weird that nobody else has ever dreamed it.

Today, I'm feeling a bit better, but am still way too self-conscious to be in front of a camera. I did, however, manage to drag my ass to the post office and mail all the kawaii orders from my pop-up shop. (Don't worry, though. They aren't germ-y and I promise I'm not contagious. The sickness I'm having is just a recurring stomach problem I occasionally have that puts me out of commission for a few days.)

I was afraid the mean postal lady was gonna be there and that she was gonna be pissed when I came waltzing in with 22 packages to ship, but it turned out to be a new lady who was freakin' awesome. I guess she noticed my Pokemon cap and the Hello Kitty stickers I'd put on a lot of the packages, and we started talking about anime and kawaii things. It turned out she's a cosplayer, and she told me about several anime/comic-type conventions that happen in Arkansas, which I didn't even know existed. I never expect to run into people here with interests similar to mine--Arkansas can feel a little isolating at times--so it was nice to find a kindred spirit.

Also, the receipt from mailing all those packages was nearly 4 feet long. I measured it when I got home. And now I'm telling you about it to maybe justify measuring it. I don't think it's working.

I took a picture of the end of the receipt while I was measuring it.
Why? I don't know. I guess my life is just that interesting.

Anyway, I'm sorry again that there won't be videos today or tomorrow. I'll be back and hopefully refreshed on Monday.

-joe