Saturday, September 25

You Like, You Buy Vol 6

The Heroic Rendezvous site has some really cute drawings of children which capture their innocence and wonder. It makes me wish I was a kid again, when life was simple and I didn't have to worry about tough questions like what constitutes business casual or how many drinks is too many?

On the site you can find t shirts, singlets and greeting cards featuring the little heroes. There are also some other designs like heroic pig above which are inspired by the kiddie artwork that is usually found pinned to the wall in some hard-working corporate executive's office to show that he is a family man but is actually there to remind him that he still has a kid who he doesn't see very often. And is now 18 years old.

If you click on the pictures of the children in the upper left hand corner, you can also learn a bit more about them. Whoever wrote the children's profiles must be extremely twisted because these little darlings have enough deep-seated psychological issues to form a very special episode of the Jerry Springer Show. For example:

Bright straight A student, idol of the class, a friend to everybody....He is attracted to Nette. He is not a shy boy but blushes every time Nette is around. He says he will protect Nette for a lifetime, before age 20, he is her brother and her lover from 20 onwards.
How incredibly creepy. The old transition from brother to lover trick gets the girl every time. Somebody please stop letting him read those Flowers in the Attic books.

Choey is curious about everything. Her mother is her best friend and they go everywhere together. She even keeps her mom's photos in her wallet, like collecting photos of movie stars. All her friends like her, but doesn't like it when she brings her mom along.
Some kind of emotional dependency issues, with possible shared psychotic disorder.

Cheekoo loves to sleep. 80% of the time when she is with her family is spent on sleeping. Her father always says that her eyelids speak a language of their own. Whenever she is sleepy, her single eyelids crease up, telling you she wants to sleep.
High-grade narcolepsy leading to a multitude of personal and professional problems.

Lila is attracted to Cheeko, especially when she is sleepy. He is also very caring. He calls Cheeko every morning to wake her up and walk her to school.
Uh-oh, I think we have a stalker in the making. One that's likely to slip Rohypnol in your drink when you're not looking.

Fafa has a passion for cats. Wherever she goes, her six cats go too. She counts her cats every once in a while, afraid of missing any of them. She saves all her pocket money for cat food. Her mother often says that she has 7 daughters - Fafa and six cats
Guess who's going to be known as crazy cat lady when she grows up?

On a more positive note, the digital goodies section kept me mildly entertained for a few minutes (don't play the memory game if you're one of those who think that all Chinese kids look alike).

Friday, September 24

The Smell of Cumming

In the past month alone, at least 3 fragrances have been launched by celebrities and several more are on the way including True Star by Beyonce and Maria Sharapova's signature line. I was a bit sceptical at first but the descriptions of these new fragrances sound very promising.

Donald J. Trump
Donald Trump, The Fragrance is an overpowering cologne where the top scent is fondly reminiscent of a US$100 dollar bill after a $10,000 a night hooker has sniffed cocaine off it. Its core note is the heady aroma of a freshly printed prenuptial agreement (the contents of which are a well kept secret), rounded out with the tinge of a corporate serf's sweat against his crisp white collar after the words "You're Fired" has been screamed at him. The finish comes from the dark woody undertone of a boardroom table and has accents of the interior leather of a limo, and a radiant beauty pageant queen. The cologne is packaged in a mini gold skyscraper, crowned with what appears to be uneven tufts of ginger and greying hair.

Britney Spears
Curious is a very nostalgic fragrance that makes you long for the days when people respected the sanctity of marriage. Its sickly sweet bubblegum top note is accented with the lingering smell of cigarettes and vomit on a pink velour tracksuit that hasn't been washed for days but has been worn night after night to go partying at the local nightclub. The middle notes tease the senses with an unsubtle mix of chicken wings, barbecue ribs and cheese hamburgers. At the base, one can identify a light infusion of Cheetos extracted from the Cheeto-stained fingers of several illegitimate children who have been fathered by a gold-digging unemployed back-up dancer. The fragrance bottle is a recycled Red Bull can covered with greasy hair extensions.

Alan Cumming
Cumming the Fragrance is a difficult one to describe because it seems like an intensely personal scent that is almost part of the celebrity who created it. Dominantly musky and woody, the low notes are an explosive blend of cheeky debauched pixie and teleporting blue mutant with religious tattoos. Packaging is not so much phallic as it is glittery. Overall a manly virile fragrance that is highly recommended for romantic wear.

Thursday, September 23

Busen Blitzen

Oktoberfest is in full swing so grab your Mountain Dirndl Barbie (or Beer-chan doll if you are in Japan) and Eins, Zwei, Drei, G'Suffa! Dirndls are traditional Alpine tunics worn by the waitresses and many other female festival participants. At first glance, they don't look exactly like the stuff of high fashion but occasionally, when they run out of ideas, designers do incorporate dirndl-shaped skirts in their runway collections.

A dirndl is also considered sexy because its cinched-in waist brings out the curves of the female form and with the right kind of bra, it can really accentuate cleavage. That's typical German efficiency for you.

Normally a traditional white blouse is worn inside the dirndl but according to Playboy Germany (I read for the fashion articles, ok?), it's ok to just wear a red bra. I suppose this is what men call an uber-dirndl. Might as well just prance around Oktoberfest topless. Which is what most women have been doing this year. Last year too. And the year before last. Guten Tag! Was geschieht hier? (translation: Hello! What is happening here?) Have I wandered into a James Boag media campaign?

At least one German tabloid has been happily reporting about the busen blitzen (bosom flashes) but most of the article is Not Safe For Work, partly because it contains a Playboy gallery showing you how to wear a dirndl with nothing inside or not wear a dirndl at all. I also ran the article through Babelfish and came up with this bit of useful information:

But remained sober on the Wiesn only the few: Hundredthousands of tourists particularly from Italy, the USA, Australia and Japan flow to Munich, want to celebrate up to the excess. If the dance chapels loose-put, all dance on the tables -within seconds and a zuenftiger striptease belongs likewise to the Octoberfest customs such as dirndl and leather trousers.

So ladies, next time you've had a few too many drinks and one of your drinking buddies informs you in an embarrassed whisper that your left breast has not only escaped from your top, but has been on the loose for several hours and engaged every male in the room in lively conversation, you can reply unashamedly: Please, have you not heard of the busen blitzen? It's a European thing, you know!

Wednesday, September 22

Cosmic coiffure

Every now and then feng shui will rear its mystical head and threaten to make inroads into our beauty routines. The last time was in 2001 when Billy Yamaguchi of Spa Mystique became popular by applying feng shui and zen philosophies to hair. Suddenly feng shui was the buzzword of the moment, along with "holistic approach" and "total quality". Julia Roberts and Drew Barrymore had their nails done the feng shui way. There's even been a feng shui cosmetics line launched, including a Wealth and Power set which contains purple, gold and deep green eyeshadows. And all this time I thought Ru Paul had got rich and famous without any help.

Billy Yamaguchi is still going strong with 6 salons in California and he also has a book planned for the end of this year. What is the sound of one hand giving a US$250 feng shui haircut? Ka-ching! But Billy better look out for the rising star of Michael Motorcycle. His real name is Michael Kolar but he changed it after a "life-changing experience" involving an exploding waterbed, a motorcycle and a big guy who goes by the name of the Gimp. OK I made the Gimp part up but it's mostly true. Michael's celebrity clients include Jennifer Lopez, Jerry Hall and Iman. Now it's quite obvious to me that their hair isn't the source of their negative life-draining energies. All they have to do is spend less time with zombie corpses, the cryptkeepers and alien beings.

To many people, feng shui has an elusive mysticism that conjures up an image of a wise old Chinese man clutching a bagua mirror, surveying his surroundings with a studied calm and then solemnly intoning "wax on...wax off". The beauty of it is that you can use feng shui to explain virtually anything, and that can come in handy for hairstylists who never listen to their customers.

Customer 1: Why did you give me a mullet? I didn't ask for one.
Hair stylist: It's feng shui, man. You were drowning in your dominant element but now I have restored balance so you are now at harmony with the water.

Customer 2: OMFG, what have you done? Now I can't appear in court!
Hair stylist: Relax it's feng shui. I've just cropped the front to let your head to harness the positive energy from the sun more effectively. Forget about court, there is no higher judge than the heavens and with this new look they will surely smile upon and laugh at, I mean with, you.

In Hong Kong, feng shui may be important when moving homes and offices but we don't buy into feng shui principles when doing our hair. Instead we prefer to get our hair cut the fundamentalist way:

Tuesday, September 21

Dressed to win

Election here, election there, election everywhere. There's been all kinds of new fashion released to encourage interest in voting (which apparently goes hand in hand with having one's way with young women) but what about the politicians themselves. Having the right clothing and accessories is actually a very important factor in deciding the success of an election campaign.

During a campaign a political candidate probably spends an inordinate amount of their time standing in front of a microphone. This can be a problem for some candidates who are short in stature (but tall in promises) and sometimes have to deal with the microphone can coming perilously close to going up their nostrils. What they need is the "Hot Speaker" which won the Bizarre Bra award at the 2004 World of Wearable Art Awards. It's incredibly useful for politicians of all heights because it gives them even more freedom of movement than a sports bra. You can call it a bra, a bro or even a mansierre. I prefer to call it a voice amplification harness.

When they're not in front of a microphone, political candidates are energetically pounding along the campaign trail in a bid to show that their campaign is still running at full speed. It's not something you can do in designer shoes that are only made for striding smugly around offices with plush carpets and lots of expensive artwork. The Masai Barefoot Technology shoe produces a special rolling action that exercises your whole body when you walk.

It benefits posture, joints, muscle and circulation but best of all it reduces cellulite. So even if you do lose the election, you've also lost deposits of fat around your ass and thighs. One satisfied user said that after wearing the shoes, their pelvic floor muscles felt like they were engaging, which I thought sounded kind of rude and is the sort of thing you only say in private to your husband after you've given birth and it's ok to resume marital relations.

I'm no expert in election speeches but I know that they can go on and on, like the Infinite Cat Project without the cuteness. You can resort to doing impersonations of Mole from Wind in the Willows to sustain the audience's interest but it's nowhere near as effective as a tv screen.

By wearing a T-shirt TV you can make a dry speech a little bit more entertaining. Sure you can loop your political ads into some kind of subliminal message but wouldn't more people turn up to watch if you had a riveting soap opera on? The voters will really connect with you when they see how the political debates with your rivals are so similar to the dramatic rivalries between the Forresters and the Spectras. Or what about showing some quality porn? With realistic flesh tones! There won't be any tough questions to field from the crowd - Hang on, doesn't that contradict your policy statement back in...ooh naked boobies!

Monday, September 20

Goodie bags

The only things that interest me about award shows like the Emmys are the embarrassing displays of red carpet fashion (as shown above) and the extravagant gift bags.

This year's official Emmy gift bag was reportedly worth about US$30,000 so I did some research and compiled a near-complete list of its contents. If you managed to get your hands on one, please let me know what else needs to be included. Remember that these bags are given to presenters and nominees so yes, even William Shatner gets one!

Dooney & Bourke large doctor's satchel
Luxury designer dog products from Bella Pooch including custom clothing and gourmet food

Choice of one custom piece of gold jewelry, with or without precious stones from Ippolita
Elini Nazar watches (ugh, they make "Rolex copy watch" look good)

38cm flat screen television
Sprint PCS Vision Multimedia Phone MM-A700 by Samsung

One kg box of Ethel M. Chocolate
Private dinner at Morton's, The Steakhouse
Bottle of Californian wine with an invitation for two to Napa Valley for lunch and a private vineyard tour

One year membership at The Sports Club LA
A crapload of Dior beauty products
Day spa visits

Choice of five nights accommodation at exclusive destinations from Small Luxury Hotels of the World (what, no airfare, how stingy!)
United Airlines upgrades certificates

I know what you're thinking - It doesn't look quite right. There should be more. Well of course there is, silly. Didn't I say earlier that was just the official gift bag. Will you keep up with me, here! Let me break it down for you so that you civilians (Matt Damon's term, not mine) can understand it better. There's also:
1. the Buzz Bags given a week before the awards ceremony;
2. the Distinctive Assets gift bags for all the nominees; and
3. the Entertainment Tonight after-party gift bags.

Now you too can sleep more soundly at night in the knowledge that overpaid tv stars can never be pampered enough.

Sunday, September 19

Fashion Roadkill of the Day: Vol 8

I'm looking forward to the cooler days of autumn after the scorching summer we've been subjected to. How hot was it, you ask? I'll show you exactly how hot it's been.

I can almost make out the shape of a monarch butterfly there. However he's not the main subject of today's post. When the sun comes out in Hong Kong, most people develop a unhealthy dependence on their umbrellas. I thought the trend of carrying an umbrella out for a daytime stroll disappeared around the time that Queen Victoria's reign ended. I'm all for sun protection but I draw the line at having to fight my way through a sea of umbrellas every time I walk down the road to buy the morning paper. Very tempted to stick a wooden stake into one of these umbrella-carrying loons just to see if they turn into dust.

Oh honey, did you know that the pavement beneath your tacky wedge heels also reflects UV rays. With the amount of skin you have on show, you're going to fry, baby, fry.

Estimated value of damage caused by the last five typhoons which this umbrella has been used in: Over HK$100 million. Cost of replacement umbrella: Less than HK$50. Managing to looking like a cheapskate AND fashion roadkill at the same time: Priceless.

Some people are so fond of using their umbrella in summertime that they opt to get one surgically attached to their arm. Give it up for Edwina Umbrellahand!

Hey lady, you're under cover already! There's no need to open your umbrella unless you want to show off the fact that you own a Burberry one. How much protection exactly do you need? I feel sorry for your husband - "darling, what do you mean 2 condoms isn't enough?"

Next summer the government should make some community service announcements along the lines of: Think about getting a hat. Sunglasses even. And some sunscreen. They're sold in things called shops. It's not that hard, people!