Is It Still January??


There are two new things in my life since last Friday:  I’ve added weight lifting to my daily gym workout, and I have become 100% addicted to Twitter.

I get it now, why people are always checking their phones. It seems there are tons of people out there who share your obsession (whatever that obsession is, birdhouse building, knock-knock jokes, cute Koreans) but they are ten times funnier and filthier than you and you can’t wait to read what they will come up with next. I check Twitter way too many times a day, and when I do, I’m scrolling for at least half an hour. I love Twitter.

Once in a while something in your feed will trend and then everything explodes. It’s like being at a party with a thousand people, all of you screaming THIS IS SO COOL!!

I spent a lot of time on Twitter this past week because it was blowing up every day because some particularly cute Koreans were in America for the Grammies on Sunday night:

And then on Tuesday night, they were on TV again, on James Cordon’s Late Late Show:

The bare feet got a lot of attention; funny, filthy attention.

So after the show, one of BTS’s fans, which are known collectively and individually as ARMY, tweeted that since James Cordon has always been a great supporter of BTS, ARMY should thank him by donating to his favorite charity. She name-checked Magic Breakfast, an organization in London that provides free breakfasts for poor British schoolchildren, and in two days BTS ARMY from 54 countries had donated enough money to buy 36,271 breakfasts.

It’s nice to know that our dirt-bag president hasn’t ruined all of Twitter. I’m not sure the same can be said about what he has done to our country.

A while ago, a Dear Reader asked me about the ChrisHanuKwanSolstice card that I sent out this past holiday season.

She asked me how I got the background so sparkly — was it paint? Or a filter?

This is a good week to answer her question, since I’ll do anything to avoid discussing how the Republicans are destroying our democracy. There will be plenty of time for that later, as we survey the smoldering ruins and look into Canadian citizenship.

My first idea for the ChrisHanuKwanSolstic card was to photograph the snow-white book against a nifty map of the constellations that I have:

But no, that background was too busy. So I tried going with the classic, auction-house catalogue style of nothing but a velvety black background:

The problem was that this did to look very ChrisHanuKwanSolstice-y. I wanted sparkle!

So the next day I went out in search of glitter. Yeeesh. Michael’s arts and crafts store has a lot of glitter to choose from. This is not necessarily a good thing.

America, are we putting too much emphasis on glitter in our scrapbooking??

I bought the most elegant glitter I could find and did my best to be-dazzle the scene:

No. No way. Nope. NO.

I carefully gathered up all that glitter and put it back in the jar. If anyone wants some elegant colorless glitter, let me know.

I next fiddled with some lights I have.


Front lit:

I even tried using a blue filter:

THEN I had a dream, and the dream told me to poke holes in the velvety black background. Literally. Poke holes.

So I randomly poked holes into the heavy, velvety black paper I used as the background. I actually forget what I used to poke the holes; maybe it was a Korean chopstick?

This is my set-up, in the window-seat of my dining room:

Daylight is shining through the holes I poked into the backdrop.

I got this:

Meh. It could use some color, don’t you think? So, I used a blue filter:

Then I heard a voice, and it was complaining that there was no easy way to get this photo to sparkle, it was going to take some old-fashioned hand work that was going to be very annoying.

I took a string of tiny colored lights, and poked tiny bulbs through the tiny holes that I had previously poked. This is the back of it:

And by then it was night, so only the colored lights showed up when I photographed the front:


This is it with correct lighting, so the front of the snow castle isn’t in shadow:

The next morning, the sun rose and I had daylight poking through the holes that didn’t have a colored light poking through it:

And that’s how I got both white and colored lights in the background of my ChrisHanuKwanSolstice card.

I think the moral of todays blog post is, If At First You Don’t Succeed, Just Poke It.

Time for the usual round up.

Ted Lieu is the Democrat representing California’s 33rd congressional district.





















Have a great weekend, everyone. We know what the verdict is going to be; let’s not obsess over it. Let’s take comfort knowing that history will look back on these shit bag Republicans and hold them accountable for perverting the constitution and for being the biggest ass-wipes in American history.



9 Comments, RSS

  1. Mary Brickman

    Good one today, Vivian. I wanted to know how you did the colored “lights” in the background of your card.
    It took much time, and you kept thinking of how to improve, etc.
    Great Job. Card is beautiful.
    Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. Patricia

    Longest month of the year to date! Even longer if you’ve given up all sugar (no candy, cookies, cake, pie, ice cream, muffins, pastries). I did it to decrease my desire for chocolate and other goodies. It’s been a very long month. Last year I did it for Lent. Next year I’m picking February. My freezer is stuffed with desserts I couldn’t eat but couldn’t pass up.
    Imagine. I had that stupid trial with those stupid Republicans and I couldn’t even drown my sorrows. No Moose tracks ice cream.
    I’m really hoping Bolton goes on a talk show this weekend and reads excerpts from his suppressed book.

  3. Kirra

    Great work by ARMY, it’s really nice seeing how awesome music fans are. It makes me really happy that all these people wouldn’t be doing amazing things like raising all this money if they weren’t fans of BTS.

    Your perseverance to get the best likes for your end of year photo is really impressive. Good luck giving away the glitter.

    Enjoy your time on Twitter, I’m sometimes on it and sometimes not. Kind of how in waves of interest.

    Waiting for a cat to make you an omelette = brilliant.

    Spare a thought for equally stewed Britian as Brexit commenced this weekend (obviously Harry & Megan are thinking like you, going off to live in Canada). We’re dealing with our own corrupt politicians in Australia at the moment, idiots!

  4. Sadly, there are plenty of mouth-breathing idiots up here in Canada too. I live in Saskatchewan, where, in the federal election last fall, not one seat was won by anything but a Conservative (our version of a Republican). It’s so disheartening. Many of these voters think Trump is “good,” whatever good means to them. Impossible to understand how anyone can think that. They don’t “think”? Maybe that’s it. -Kate

  5. Good job on the background for the castle! You definitely get points for persistence. Which I guess is why you’re an artist — you persist until you get exactly what you want. You have a specific vision. There’s no “oh, that’s good enough” — which is what I would do.

    I do not share your enthusiasm for Twitter. I had a Twitter account for about five minutes. I rarely regret deleting it.

    Oh, you asked who the dashing young man with exceptional teeth was that we failed to identify on Quiz Night — I believe it was Matthew Lawrence, who used to be on “Boy Meets World.”

  6. Well first, thanks for the step out on the card. I thought it might be that (I’d seen that technique done with a painting on canvas, which actually looked tacky but it works great for the castle! It’s the black background. Knocked it out of the park.

    As for last week’s shenanigans, no words. Well, lots of words, but I’ll refrain. I just wish J.B. would come out with something bigger and better this weekend. I’m sure Meet the Press or Face the Nation would welcome the “get.”

  7. Casey

    What Steve said, that it’s your perseverance that makes you the artist that you are. Are you like this in other aspects of life? Can you write a book about how to become obsessed with quality like you are, and make us all better people?

    I refuse to hear anything more about the farce in the Senate. It’s a shameful time in our country’s history, and I am appalled to be living through it. Can we put all Republicans on rafts and push them far, far out to sea for being traitors? Can we?

  8. Leslie

    As far as the Republican argument about respect for the will of the voters, I refer, once again, to the historical record and Richard Nixon, who won his second term by an overwhelming 49 of 50 states ! The big difference now seems to be that our president and his lackeys appear to have no shame, no moral compass, and no sense of patriotism. Absolutely shocking! They are the deplorables.

  9. Glad someone asked about the card. I have it sitting here near my desk and was wondering the same thing. Love it and thanks!
    Why I avoid Twitter is everything else I do on internet is enough. I can’t imagine adding Twitter.
    Yes, T’s head is “barren”. He is one sick, demented old man who needs to be kicked into prison.

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