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Cosplayers Having Fun

Personally, I’ve never dressed up in any costume outside of Halloween. But I do love looking at cosplayers’. They always look like they’re having fun, and would be fun to just hang out with. Here’s a bunch at the London Film and Comic Convention last month singing and dancing to Pink’s Raise Your Glass:

I could only identify about half the characters; my knowledge of fantasy/sci-fi characters has fallen behind the times. Having put together some Halloween costumes, (not bought off the rack), myself, I can imagine how much time and effort they put into some of those more elaborate outfits, and many of the results are impressive.


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Six Word Stories

There is an old tale about Ernest Hemingway writing a “six word story.” It tends to go like this:

Ernest Hemingway was dining with several fellow writers, and claimed he could write a complete story in less than 10 words. Bets were placed against him, and he took the challenge. On a napkin, he wrote: “For Sale, Baby Shoes, Never Used.” Hemingway won the bet. His story was complete, as it had a beginning, a middle, and an end.

Though this tale is fairly well known, even among people who only know of Hemingway by reputation, it is specious. The six words are, no argument, evocative, and somewhat reminiscent of Hemingway’s style of writing. But there is no evidence Hemingway ever made such a bet or wrote these words.

Plus, the usual claim that the “story was complete, as it had a beginning, a middle, and an end,” isn’t correct. The six words are a description, not a story. There is no beginning, middle, or end. Though there is a story suggested, there’s no actual story. There’s no actor, no action, and no setting.

But, even with the spurious nature of the story, it is an interesting idea: writing a story in six words. I don’t think it is truly possible to write an interesting complete story (beginning, middle, end) with an action and an actor. Sure, you can write an actor and an action in six words, (e.g. “The man picked up the apple”), but a beginning, a middle, and an end?

Now, writing an evocative idea in six words: that’s possible, and a fun exercise. For instance, here’s some I came up with in a few minutes:

Being dead is not fun anymore.

When the tree fell, someone heard.

Tonight the stars went out early.

He screamed, she ran, it smiled.

Some fish can’t take a joke.

The coconut fell out of style.

Time for a calculated home run.

Don’t come home without more ammunition.

It’s like writing poetry in haiku. The tight constraints open many possibilities. But it can become a habit.


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Rustic Tony

This sign hangs from the ceiling of our favorite local pizza buffet. It’s a barely humorous ad, and I didn’t consider it bad in any way. But then, I’m not Italian. I could see an argument for Italians taking offense at “rustic” being considered particularly Italian.*

This is a national restaurant chain, and presumably a national ad campaign. But have you heard any news about any Italians or Italian-Americans or any Tonys being upset over this portrayal of them as rustic? Or that Tony is a stereotypical Italian name?

The concept got me thinking about how something like this is okay for one group, but probably wouldn’t be okay for another group.

Say the restaurant had a new squid pizza:

Any more Japanese and we would’ve named it Akira

A curry style:

Any more Indian and we would’ve named it Guru

An “urban” style (vice “rustic”):

Any more Urban and we would’ve named it Lebron

A Mexican style:

Any more Mexican and we would’ve named it Jose

A koshur style:

Any more Jewish and we would’ve named it Hiram

Would such signs be acceptable? I would bet such signs would stir up controversy and anger. There might be opinion articles decrying the insensitivity, protests against some ‘ism, calls to boycott until the company “made things right.”

So, is it that Italians are undersensitive? Or is everyone else oversensitive?

* rustic -from Dictionary.com
of, pertaining to, or living in the country, as distinguished from towns or cities; rural.
simple, artless, or unsophisticated.
uncouth, rude, or boorish.
a country person.
an unsophisticated country person.


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Axe Ad

Usually, this is the day when I’d post some random photograph, but I just found something hilarious I have the urge to share. So instead of spamming all my friends with an email link to this, I’ll just post it here:


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