Bento Box Bits of everything


Capitol Hill Block Party and Fuck the Back Row Dresden Dolls show

On Friday I went with Kevin to check out Capitol Hill Block Party before seeing the Dresden Dolls' film show. The show was held at the Capitol Hill Arts Center so it was only a short walk away from the block party going on at the same time. The block party was mainly a music festival, not many vendors or food booths. Even with three stages, it became crowded, especially when Band of Horses came on stage. We saw a bunch of different bands: Slender Means, Helio Sequence, Immaculate Machine, Tennis Pro, Himsa, Village Green, and Band of Horses.

My two favorite acts would probably be Village Green and Tennis Pro. Both bands brought a lot of energy to the stage and were pure fun rock n' roll. Tennis Pro's gimmick was that they were dressed in ill-fitting ugly tennis garb. Imagine: short-shorts, tight polos with popped collars, and a headband. They even had their own tennis groupies: girls who came to the show in mini skirts and swinging wooden tennis racquets.

Check out my flickr for more pictures and hi-res versions.

I'm a big fan of the Dresden Dolls, so when I heard that Amanda Palmer was putting on a film and music show I was sure to go. Amanda Palmer of the Dresden Dolls showed a collection of short films and in between the series of shorts there were live acts such as a Samba dancer on stilts, and a fire breather/dancer. To top off the night, Amanda Palmer brought out the other half of the Dresden Dolls: Brian Viglione; to do a few songs. She mainly played film songs and covers, which will probably never be recorded and released so it was great to see such a rare performance.

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Seattle Woodland Zoo

This weekend I played assistant-babysitter to my nieces while my brother was out of town on his annual golftrip. Luckily my sister-in-law thought of enough activities to keep us occupied. On Saturday morning we went to the Seattle Woodland Zoo along with four other families. I haven't been to a zoo since I was in highschool so it was fun practicing my photography on animals I haven't seen in a really long time. Out of the 192 pictures taken during the trip, these are the ones I am most proud of. Check my flickr for the hi-res version.


Happiness Index

I found The Happy Planet Map from a yahoo news article. The gist of the article is that an organization found that there is no correllation between happiness and consumption. There's more too it than that, since the article takes the perspective of relating tech consumption with happiness; the tech-countries did not fare well when ranked based on "happiness."

Maybe it is all subjective because the study was based on people's perceptions of their own quality of life; but after poking around on the website, I tend to agree with the rankings. It seems that the countries with simpler lives are more happy.

This harks back to my views on the American consumerist lifestyle. We work work work, but for what? To buy more stuff? To make our lives easier? To have provide a better life for our children? But any of this make us happier?
Maybe we should start saving up to move away to another country and live simpler, happier lives. Then I'd just need to find a way to replace my tech-based hobbies...

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To golf, or not to golf

It's still only Saturday? I did so much today that I feel like the weekend is over already. I woke up a little before noon and went straight to the licensing office to get my WA license in North Bend. The wait time was not so bad since the office was in the sticks away from Seattle. Then I came home and vaccuumed the house and cleaned my bathroom. Chores and errands give me a sense of accomplishment.

Afterwards my brother took me to the golf range. I told him a few weeks back that I was kind of interested in learning. I hesitate to jump into golf due to the high cost of equipment, playing, practice, and lessons. So far I'm self-taught on almost all the sports and activities I do; in a weird way, I'm proud of that. At the range I figured my experience in racquet sports may help some since I heard golf is all in the hips and legs. Turned out I was right and my brother said I was kind of a natural. Surprising, since the last time I hit a golf ball was probably 10 years ago.

I brought my camera to try to take some action shots of my bro but it turned out to be more useful for taking video instead. I was making solid contact with the irons and could get the approximate distances on each club. My placement was pretty good as well since I was not slicing or hooking it; the ball flew straight plus or minus a few yards in either direction. My brother said he'll take me to a par3 as soon as I learn how to putt. Here's my swing; any tips are appreciated

My only dilemma now is deciding if I want to add golf to my ever-growing list of activities. I don't want to spread myself thin and be only average at the things I do. The competitive nature in me demands that I be better than others at the things I get into. I've been told this is a bad personality trait, but to me, being competitive IS fun (i.e., winning is fun).

After golf I went back to Beaver Lake to do some solitary biking. I was the only person in there and it felt eerily serene. It felt good not thinking about anything while I was in there. I was just focused on the moment. I'm finally enjoying mountain biking more now that the initial fears have disappeared and my skills are more developed. MTB really gets my heartrate pumping more than a typical workout at the gym. It takes more mental effort for me to get my HR up at the gym because it's too easy to just settle into a groove. Check this out, I recorded my biking session

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