this is the semi-grown up blog of liz markus, showcasing her ability to put letters and symbols together in a pleasant and correct manner.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

+100 things that make me happy+ #16: cartoons for adults

right now, gangster no. 1 is on tv. before that, it was chitty chitty bang bang. both of these serve to remind me that cartoons are so, so awesome. way more awesome than both of those.

i mean, come on, how can you not love this:

i don't want you to be intimidated... but my high score is 6.

(8/11/11: i haven't touched this because i haven't been inspired. so rather than let it rot and give up completely, i'm just going to list the cartoons i love, and if i have something immediately awesome to say/post about them, i will. if not... then i won't. it's definitely one or the other.)

ugly americans
frisky dingo
south park
12oz mouse
aqua teen hunger force/unit patrol squad
old school looney tunes
regular show
adventure time
family guy
american dad
home movies
spongebob squarepants

all of the above are things that i enjoy watching. the end.

Monday, June 20, 2011

+100 things that make me happy+ #15: frozen yogurt by the ounce. and by ounce, i mean at least sixteen of them.

summer is sure taking its sweet time arriving here in the bay area. we had one hot day (of course it was the day i had to help move 2,000 motorcycle and scooter tires, duh), and then a bunch of nice moderate days... and then tuesday we had a rain storm. and i do mean storm, we had to turn on the lights at one in the freaking afternoon. it was oppressive.

for the longest time, i was all about rain, and clouds, and wind and gloom and fog and blah blah blah. it set a mood, and you got to bundle up. and seeing as i have atrocious skin on my legs, i didn't have to stress about overheating when i pulled on jeans and pants and flannels every day.

but let me tell ya, ever since moving to the santa cruz mountains, i have been all about summer. i think there might be a correlation between that shift in mood and how much propane to heat the house costs. that and one thing i have always liked about summer was how i could be sitting around at eight-thirty and still see my hand in front of my face, or drive with my headlights off. and now, thanks to fantastic on-going trends, i have a new thing to love about summer:


not just tcby, get-a-cone-and-walk-down-the-street-lazy-styles froyo. no, fuck that. that's amateur hour. when i enter a frozen yogurt establishment, i want AT LEAST six different choices of yogurt. at this point, i will take a large squirt of each, trying to keep complimentary flavors grouped and then realizing that that is folly and it's all sugar so just pump the damn yogurt.

there must be a minimum of ten feet of toppings NOT including the fruit. this is important. if i were a better person, i'd bring a tape measure with me (yes, that would make me a better person, it's providing a vital service). the toppings need to be fresh and varied. they need to include cereal and nuts and chocolate and candy and various gelatin-based bits. there should be a sauce bar of some kind, but this is not crucial.

when you finally get to the fruit, it, too, needs to be vibrant. no pansy-ass kiwi and pineapple niblets, please, it's insulting. this is also the section where you will find the brownie and cookie dough bits. if you don't find them there, throw your yogurt on the floor and leave.

there should be a little cooling machine next to the registers. in it is a canister of whipped cream. apply liberally. if you don't find it there, throw your yogurt on the floor and leave.

now to pay. they will weigh your yogurt and charge you by the ounce. if you have less than 16 ounces, throw your yogurt on the floor and leave.

... ha! that was a test! if you have less than 16 ounces, go back to the beginning of the line and add more shit.

your yogurt cup should now look like willy wonka and captain crunch went to a frat party and got hammered and threw up, and weigh as much as the average house cat. if it doesn't, you did it wrong and are now a failure. at yogurt. and that's the worst kind of failure, in my opinion. if, however, your cup meets all the aforementioned criteria, you are now free to sit and orally bask in your accomplishment.

one of these days i need to remember to take a picture of my epic yogurt creations, because i have yet to find a picture online that truly captures the spirit of yogurt-by-the-pound.

the website describes this yogurt as an "incredible frozen yogurt and topping combination". yeah, that's really incredible, if the definition of "incredible" was recently changed to "staying in one color scheme and being lame and boring". because as everyone knows, gummi candy + frozen yogurt = the hard, unappetizing bits swimming in melted yogurt that no one eats because they hurt your teeth.

oh look, someone likes mochi! you know what i like? chicken curry. maybe i should pour some over my yogurt and forsake all other toppings. BORING.

look at this fresh, healthful offering! a little yogurt, some nice chopped fruit, and oh, look out, a little syrup there! they're getting craaaaazy now! i think the only thing this cup needs is a little advice:


i quit you, internet, you disgust me. i'll try and take a picture next time.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

+100 things that make me happy+ #14: the fragile euphoria of drawing and having that drawing come out just fine

there was a time in my life when i was fairly prolific. i drew all the time. mostly in class, which in retrospect makes a lot of sense, as i seem to do things best when i'm doing them in lieu of other things, like geometry and science.

i can't quite pinpoint when my multi-year-and-still-going dry spell of creativity began, or the reasons behind it. perhaps it was the nagging notion that just because my mother thinks my drawings are good and that i look great in this sweater vest, doesn't necessarily mean everyone else will feel the same way. and maybe that was coupled with a pre-built lack of self-esteem and desire FOR the acceptance and/or friendship from the very peer group i hated. and maybe that was mixed up with the already growing habit of swallowing myself inward to make myself as bland and "normal" as possible, so perhaps i could just be left the fuck alone for once.

it's really hard to say, exactly.

regardless of its origins, the spell has continued, and i have no idea how to really make it go away. the solution most likely has its roots in self-acceptance and forgiveness of myself and others, and a lot of crying and talking and quite possibly running away from everyone and everything and learning to be an autonomous unit.

all of the aforementioned messy bullshit makes the times when i do put pencil to paper and have it come out good all the more relieving. it's like, maybe i am good, and maybe things aren't as shitty as i'm making them out to be. which is usually how it works out. i'll learn that completely, one of these days, i'm sure. in the meantime, i'll continue about my merry way, getting over my fear of myself in millimeters of graphite and single drops of india ink. and cat hair. lots of cat hair. so... so much cat hair. dammit, finn.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

+100 things that make me happy+ #13: learning to use my camera effectively

in case you hadn't already guessed, this will be a picture-heavy post. because lo and behold, liz actually sat down for fifteen minutes and read through the manual that came with her camera all those years ago. and surprise, surprise, there's no longer noise or blur! MAGIC!

and since having learned to wield my camera in a more professional and pleasing manner, i have taken a great many pictures of random shit. mostly my cats. because they're insane. and plants, lots of plants. i live in the mountains, i have a lot of plants, all right? they're just there.

like this one:

look, ma! light and composition!

and this one:

omg, perspective and shit!

and then there's the things inside my house that somehow become much more interesting when i'm staring at them on a computer screen! like the wienerdog in my kitchen:

and of course the creatures in my house, like this little guy:

and these not-so-little guys.

i'm trying very hard not to fall into the pit of "i can take a decent, clear photo, ergo i am now a photographer and can call myself that and people will think i'm awesome, especially if it's black and white", but it's difficult when i'm having so much fun. i just have to keep bringing myself back down to earth with thoughts like, "you've never taken a photo class in your life" and "try being awesome with a real camera and not just your sony point-and-shoot before you fly off the handle". it works, i promise. but even with those thoughts, i feel more confident in my ability to accurately record my surroundings, and that really helps when i see something that perhaps i might want to paint later.

like this:

i'll probably give her wings or a tail. she'd like that.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

there is something to be said about liking yourself enough to not need everyone else to like you. but it seems so hard. does anyone really feel that way, completely?

Saturday, June 4, 2011

+100 things that make me happy+ #12: getting a full, good night of sleep

i don't know if irony is the correct word to use when writing about how good it feels to get a full night of sleep after not having really gotten one the past few nights, but let's just plow right ahead, shall we?

i've found that everyone's definition of "a full night's sleep" is different. my affianced describes it as, like, six hours. i describe it as no less than eight. science has currently settled on seven hours as being the magic (adult) number (at least last i read).

i say screw my guy and science.

i don't know if it's just me and my hardcore urban lifestyle (computers, baked beans, nachos), or the fact that i'm female, or having fibromyalgia, but i notice a distinct, horrible difference when i don't get a certain amount of fancy, non-interrupted sleep. like, for instance, i become retarded. literally, my ability to think severely retards. and with retardation comes frustration and irritability over my inability to function as a normal person instead of some drooling, rabid forest yak.

in my semi-self-imposed idiocy, i tend to forget (or just straight ignore) the fact that maybe not staying up until one in the morning on my laptop will help me achieve the rest i need and desire. this will go on for a few days, and then the hunger sets in.

my body will demand energy from some source, and unfortunately, my fat ass seems to always be its last resort. so when the sleep rations are low, i start to eat like a maniac, thus adding to the never-ending-but-always-on-my-end resource that my body chooses to ignore. which i suppose is for the best, otherwise i would probably never sleep, and then i would die. but i would look fabulous at my cremation*.

wow, that all sounds terrible. which probably makes those nights when i DO sleep well all the more fucking fantastic. i am a motherfucking ninja when i'm fully awake and alert: i deal better with people, i remember more things, i hit fewer pedestrians with my car... it's a better situation for everyone involved. i pretty much glow in the dark, i'm that awesome.

unfortunately, the seductive, serotonin-restricting glow of tv and laptop always lures me with its siren's song, and i find myself stuck in an endless cycle of sleep-well, sleep-bad, sleep-well, sleep-bad. one of these days, i will win a nobel prize for discovering the gene that programs people to forget that sleeping and eating well and exercising will always make us feel better than sitting on the couch eating sour cream from a tub at two in the morning whilst watching skinemax.

google that in ten years, that'll be the exact first line of the abstract.

*i see no reason to have my descendents pay thousands of dollars to stick my dead body in a box designed for putrescence, have a fancy carved rock put in place lest they forget that i'm rotting in said box, and then be forced to eat terrible casseroles and jell-o with carrots and pineapple. i will burn and be returned to the cycle of life, thank you very much.

Friday, June 3, 2011

+100 things that make me happy+ #11: sterling silver, especially rings

this one is pretty simple: i never really liked gold. despite claims and evidence of its worthiness and rareness, it always struck me as kind of cheap. kind of like the kardashians.

my everyday jewelry ensemble consists of the following:

a ball chain, knotted, with a the pin of a grenade and a squirrel pendant my affianced found in the yard at his shop

one octopus...

... and one rose

my pseudo-engagement ring on my middle finger (too big for the other one) and a simple, scrolled band

and a piece of turquoise that looks like a power line against a dusky sky, and a SEAHORSE!

notice a theme?

it doesn't hurt that silver is cheaper (kind of), more accessible, and more interesting than gold. though i think the last might because of the two aforementioned reasons. i'd be more experimental with a cheaper metal, too.

there isn't much i can do to dress up the subject of silver... someone killed themselves on the property i live on, so i'm not feeling especially creative at the moment. i promise the next one will be better.