Monthly Archives: January 2019

Looking back at 2018

I think 2018 was a pretty great year. I moved to a new apartment, which I really like, and started a new job that is challenging and rewarding. I enjoyed spending time with many wonderful friends, went on lots of great adventures, and saw a lot of fun shows.

I went to San Diego Comic-Con again for the 8th year in a row. This year I attended with gem, Antonio, and Kaleigh.

I cosplayed Fix-It Felix, Jr. again. And here’s gem as Lilo!

gem and I took Antonio to Zion National Park in Utah and to Vegas for his bachelor party. We did lots of great hiking in Zion…

…visited the Warner Valley Dinosaur Tracks…

…saw Cirque du Soleil in Vegas…

…went to Neon Museum of old signs…

…and went ax throwing in Vegas!

Antonio married Kaleigh! I was one of his two Best People. (He had one man and woman as his Best People).

Here’s Antonio Best Woman, Best Man, and groomsman.

My photo of Anela was shown in the OC Fair.

Here we are with the photo hanging in the gallery!

Christin’s photo of us was also shown!

I always knew that deep down I was a model.

My postcard collection was featured in the OC Fair as well. I entered it as a collection of foreign postcards. I’ve traded mail with 55 countries (up 3 in 2018) and 35 US states (up 8). Considering only postcards, I’ve traded with 50 countries (up 4) and 28 US states (up 8), having received from 41 countries (up 7) and 17 US states (up 5) and sent to 45 countries (up 2) and 25 US states (up 8).

I got rid of my mustache. Sometimes I miss it.

We got season passes to Universal and went a lot of times!

Sometimes I think about what could have been if I had purchased these sunglasses. The world would be blurry, but I’d look so fly.

Andy and Kaylin got married!

And more importantly, the bar served a variety of alcohol when it was supposed to be beer and wine only. Okay, the wedding itself was actually more important, but the drinks were still somewhat important.

The Imperial Sand Dunes made for a gorgeous (but hot) backdrop.

Christin, Anela, and gem were all beautiful models!

On the way home, we visited Salvation Mountain.

Tanaka Farms’ sunflower festival was fun and beautiful!

gem really loved the huge sunflowers!

Here’s Anela and me with Hello Kitty.

 

And here’s gem and me with Hello Kitty!

Anela and I visited the lavender festival, and she wore a Ukrainian outfit.

There were many photo shoots, although a lot of them aren’t ready to be posted yet. Here’s one of Angel Kawaii as Harley Quinn!

The Arts Alive and Street Painting Festival in Mission Viejo ended up being more fun than I expected, especially because there were over 50 fairy doors.

The Christmas treasure hunt was so fun. Look at the detail on the map Pete made!

2018 was the year of pop ups for me it seems. I visited Happy Place for the second time. Here I am with gem in the rubber ducky room! I still need to go through those photos…

gem and I went to San Francisco to visit the Museum of Ice Cream (and to visit our friends Matt and Katie).

The Sprinkle Pool was awesome!

gem took me to The Pizza Experience as a Christmas present. Photo ops and pizza?! Amazing!

This is how I work out now.

I had to see the Gudetama x Curry House collaboration with gem. Luckily the curry is delicious there!

And then there’s the Rilakkuma x Roasting Water collaboration too! I’ve been to two of their locations with gem for this collaboration, and I’ve visited the one near my house many times on my own.

And I can’t forget Aggretsuko’s DEN OF RAGE!!!

gem and I learned about ethics at The Good Place Experience.

gem took this photo of me as a luchador at Luzia. I really saw a ton of shows this year:

  • Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia under the Grand Chapiteau
  • The Book of Mormon at Segerstrom Center
  • Allegiance at the Aratani Theatre
  • The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Jurassic Park at the Rockwell: Table & Stage
  • David Sedaris speaking at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center
  • Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity at New York-New York
  • Suburban Legends in Downtown Disney three times
  • Drag show at the Velvet Lounge
  • Goldfinger with The Suicide Machines, Buck-o-Nine, and Suburban Legends at the House of Blues, Anaheim
  • Dear Evan Hansen at the Ahmanson Theatre
  • Santa Claus Conquers the Martians at the Maverick Theater
  • Wicked at the Pantages
  • The Fury of the Aquabats 20th Anniversary show with The Aquabats featuring former Aquabats Catboy, Prince Adam, and Chainsaw and opener C.J. Ramone
  • Love Actually Live at The Wallis
  • …47 seasons of TV shows and 42 films (not counting repeated viewings)

What an action packed year! Can I cram as many cool things into 2019?

…oh and I also fractured my foot. Shhh!

Christmas treasure hunt

This Christmas my parents (I think mostly Pete) created a treasure hunt for the youngest generation – my brother, my two cousins, and me. It was super fun, and check out that awesome treasure map! I’m getting a little ahead of myself.

My Christmas card contained a note with the following message: A gift to divided not by millions or dozens, but rather between four Christmasey cousins… so, just work together and it will surely be a snap, all you need is a map and an app!

Below the message, as you can see, is a QR code. Scanning the QR code revealed the following: Consult the map and follow the lead, clues you will find to help with the deed. To discover the first step don’t scratch your head, just look for something big and…

When I texted it to gem, I got this reply:

Red!!!
Red! Go to the shed!

I told her that we were having Christmas Eve at my aunt’s and that the treasure was for Christmas day at my parents’. She said I should drive there right now, and then she said she was going to ride her bike there herself to find it, haha.

The next day, Christmas day, at my parents, we started our search and found this QR code on the side of the red barn in the backyard.

To find the next clue, don’t present a “Spaced Look”, to find what ye seek check the King’s _________________.

Now the last thing Pete posted to Facebook was a video of Rocky, their dog, walking in the front yard… right around the place on the treasure map labeled “Rocky the Fierce.” At first we looked around his computer thinking the clue had something to do with how he accesses Facebook, but then we went to the front yard to explore.

We found it – another QR code… and a compass!?

Now don’t get lazy, grumpy, strange and so forth, just proceed… 15 PACES DUE NORTH.

Using the compass, we aimed north and began walking.

Hidden in the flowerbed was this little container, and inside it was a note.

To decipher this clue fret no more, simply make your way through the castle door. The help you need couldn’t be any clearer. Just study this clue reflected in the…

Using the mirror in the entryway, we found our next clue.

This may be hard or it may be easy but don’t be vexed. Just use this number and ask in a… [phone number].

So I called the number, which was Pete’s. And then someone pointed out that I was clearly supposed to text.

In reply to my text, I received a QR code. James scanned it, and we got our next clue.

23 paces South, 19 paces West. Once you’ve arrived don’t be a silly goose. The clues reside under that which is…

Loose! It was under a loose part of the small wall at the edge of the property.

You’ve made it this far which is a formidable feat, for ancient kin of she what doesn’t eat meat. To uncover the next clue, go to that which is neither stoic nor slanted but rather in the spot that is truly _____________.

Enchanted!

We made our way to back yard, where the map was labeled “enchanted forest,” and found this clue.

Ready your devices at this moment of crisis… to receive the next clue you must play the odds, sing out loud this song as a call to the gods… Practice it just once and please stay in tune. If it’s treasure you seek it may happy soon… “I’ll take my Christmas goat on a banana boat or Continental Trailways bus!”

This was a Christmas-altered version of a song we used to sing from… something? Or maybe it was an inside joke? I have no idea, but we belted out our song. And get this – with four people watching us, no one thought to film us singing loudly in the backyard on Christmas about a Christmas goat.

Haley received our next clue.

If continuing this quest is actually your desire, you may want to look beneath the Funeral Pyre… 16 paces 196 degrees SSW.

Using our trusty map, we found the funeral pyre. I tried to pick up the whole thing, somehow thinking it was all glued together. It was actually just stacked, and the clue was under one of the top pieces. Oops.

Go back to the Castle, where the King mainly does dwell. Your clues lies not with a Knight or with a fighter but in an old texting machine called a _____________________.

Off to Pete’s office to look in his typewriter!

You may think the map maker a goofy buffoon, but to find the next clue look deep into the _____________. Solving the riddle is but part of this diddle. Upon arrival, curiosity to quench, perhaps you’ll need help from a magical Food ___________.

The first blank was sending us to the pool. The second one was obviously a reference to a term James uses for Mom – food wench!

And the QR code gets us this:

Like the rest who have done a quest, or maybe more like a dog without a bone, you’ll probably wanna use: Speakerphone! [phone number]

We also got this note:

Take heed of nearby surroundings and don’t play the fool… to help with this one you may want a tool…

Now I can’t quite remember if we called Mom first or if James and Haley fished the next clue out of the pool first. We saw it earlier in the hunt but knew it wasn’t time for it yet! I know at some point we called Mom, and I know we got the clue from the pool. I think she guided us to look in the pool perhaps.

Mitch grabbed and it and looked inside.

Hint: Just pull out the clue & take it w/u!Strange clues, or items to weight down the clue?

Hoist your freak flag high on the mast! Treat this request just like the last… [phone number]

The number was Uncle Chuck’s, but I don’t think we called. I know we went over to him, so maybe we called and he told us to come to him.

His clue was like one from a wise sage, and it probably even rhymed. Unfortunately, it was lost to time. But I know where it sent us.

Inside the frog were some gloves and a QR code with the final clue! We actually found this clue earlier when we were searching the Enchanted Forest, but the good King let us know we weren’t supposed to find it yet 😀

There really is a treasure, this is no trap, so do the right thing and look on the map. Just remember this last clue is not to be forgotten, your treasure likes beneath that which is rotten…

The flies on the map led us the compost, in which Haley found something…

A Wi-Fi range extender box… with a QR code on the side?!

Open “tp-link.com” in Safari

Okay, okay. I’m kidding. That QR code wasn’t actually a clue.

The box contained our treasure! One hundred dollars for us to split between the four of us! What a fun adventure! 🙂

2018 blogging in review

Every year I like to look at my blog stats. It seems a little pointless as I’ve practically stopped, but it’s hard for me to break tradition.

WebPageless

Kor’kron 501st

Polygons & Pixels

My music trends in 2018 with Last.fm and Spotify

Let’s take a look at my Last.fm account for last year, which I enjoy doing at the start of each year. The Orion Experience took the top spot. They weren’t even in my top 10 artists of 2017. Suburban Legends and The Aquabats also broke into the top 10 after not being in it in 2017. Звери dropped from number 1 to number 3, but Hayley Kiyoko went from number 10 to number 4 and click here to start generating leads.

Here’s my full top 11 (since 10 and 11 were tied).

Cosmicandy by The Orion Experience takes the top album spot, which isn’t a surprise to me because I’ve been listening to The Queen of White Lies, Obsessed With You, and The Cult of Dionysus off that album a ton. Get more info on arnas

Here’s the top 10 albums.

These were the top 10 tracks of 2018 for me. Only one song isn’t in English, just like 2017.

Spotifywrapped.com gives some interesting highlights from Spotify:

  • I started 2018 by listening to Для тебя by Звери.
  • The first artist I discovered was Big Black Delta… and I have no idea who they are right now.
  • I listened to 10,675 minutes listening to Spotify.
  • I spent 7 hours listening to The Orion Experience, my top artist.
  • My top artists were The Orion Experience, Camila Cabello, Suburban Legends, Звери, and Let’s Get It. I wonder how Last.fm doesn’t have Camila Cabello higher? I listened to her a lot. Sometimes Last.fm tracks artists with different names. For example, if a song features another artists, it might be considers “Artist A featuring Artist B,” separate from both A and B.
  • Top songs were We Don’t Care, Carnivore, Hit Me Up, Into It, and The Queen of White Lies.
  • Top genres were pop, indie, rock, punk, and hip hop.
  • My top 100 playlist was generated and can be found here or below.
  • I listened to non-mainstream artists 80% more than the average Spotify listener.
  • My oldest song played was “Did You Ever Have to Make up Your Mind?” by The Lovin’ Spoonful.
  • I listened to more Pisces artists, which Spotifywrapped notes includes Camila Cabello and Kesha, than any other sign. Hm, and I’m a Pisces too.
  • It suggested I broaden my horizons with this playlist.

I saw some concerts:

  • Suburban Legends in Downtown Disney – 3 times
  • Goldfinger with The Suicide Machines, Buck-o-Nine, and Suburban Legends at the House of Blues, Anaheim
  • The Fury of the Aquabats 20th Anniversary show with C.J. Ramone

And I watched some musicals:

  • The Book of Mormon at Segerstrom
  • Allegiance at the Aratani Theatre
  • The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Jurassic Park at the Rockwell: Table & Stage
  • Dear Evan Hansen at the Ahmanson Theatre
  • Wicked at the Pantages