That Girl With A Blog











One of my personal faves from last year.

In case you forgot about my insatiable love for pinball (or Mike Budai, or Brian Holderman, for that matter), well…I love it.

Usually sometime around my birthday, PAPA comes to town. This ends up with me playing pinball and drinking margaritas. Two of my favorite things in life. Well, this year, my birthday comes a little early with Insert Coin to Play: Pinball Life at Wildcard in Pittsburgh. Starting this Friday, it’s a great way to kick off the summer pinball season here in the ‘Burgh. Check it out:

Announcing their presence with an explosion of sound, lights, and design, pinball machines are a unique part of pop culture that combine gaming, skill, and art into one colorful package. To celebrate the machine’s presence as both art and an inspiration to artists, Wildcard is proud to present Insert Coin to Play: Pinball Life from July 15 to August 21.

Pinball Life is timed to coincide with the Professional & Amateur Pinball Association (PAPA) World Championships (August 11-14), held each year in Scott Township. This group show includes original work from local and national artists and also features vintage backplates of old games (on loan from PAPA).

In addition to the vintage pinball machines at Wildcard and a third on loan, Pinball Life includes the debut of the new Lawrenceville-themed pinball machine, featuring art by local artist Andy Scott. In addition, Wildcard will be hosting its annual Wildcard Pinball Classic on Friday, July 22. The competition will feature four tournaments on four separate machines, as well as a playoff
for a grand prize. Free to enter. In addition, 50% of the proceeds from the show and tournament will go to local bicycle advocacy group Bike Pittsburgh (www.bike-pgh.org/).

A complete list of artists follows:
– Dan Burfield works with sculptural and metal elements (www.notionpotion.com)
– Andy Scott draws and paints on different mediums (www.aplace-forall.blogspot.com)
– Cryss Stephens photographs pinball machines in extreme close-ups
(www.csstriker.deviantart.com)
– Elizabeth Klevens creates pieces out of metal and glass (www.elizabethklevens.com)
– Doug Cooper uses charcoal and other paints to create murals and video pieces
(www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/dcooper/)
– Brian Holderman is an illustrator/artist whose custom pinball machine appeared in the
Funland exhibit at the Warhol (www.bholderman.com)
– Rafael Colon uses sneakers and skateboards as his artistic medium (www.brolicdesigns.com)
– Mike Budai’s illustrations appeared on a custom pinball machine in the Funland exhibit at the
Warhol (www.crayondracula.blogspot.com)

Insert Coin to Play: Pinball Life runs from Friday, July 15 through Sunday, August 21.

I know what Iiiiiiiiii’ll be doing Friday night! And for the next month! Hooray for pinball season!



{April 30, 2010}   RIP: The Remix Manifesto

So I saw this on the Documentary Channel last night and it absolutely blew my mind. RIP: A Remix Manifesto, an open source documentary directed by Brett Gaylor, is two and a half hours of battling copyrights. It touches on medical equipment, music, art, bloggers, DJs, music piracy and more.

What I thought was incredibly funny was Girl Talk appearing in this. This guy went to my high school and now he’s out there face-fucking the RIAA. It’s pretty awesome. Also, totally didn’t know that he was a biomedical engineer. Also, pretty awesome. I was just having the conversation with my husband the other day of why I think it’s bullshit that you can patent medical equipment. Have we really become that greedy and paranoid that we would rather patent potentially life changing medical advances and make a buck than to improve the quality of life for millions of people?

Like the Brazilians. They’ve just said a big ‘ol “Fuck You” to the music industry and started doing their own thing. And what makes it all the better is that this revolution was started by their Minister of Cultural Affairs at the time, Giberto Gil. Some of the mixes being created down there are simply phenomenal. Things that you would never expected to be mashed up…well, there they are. I can’t remember who said it or what the exact quote was but it was something along the lines of the fact that there is not originality anymore. Originality is mixing two things that have never been mixed before.

Dan O’Neill is a fucking madman and I love him for it. The cartoonist and and founder of the Air Pirates, a group sued by the Walt Disney Corporation in the 70’s, still just can’t stop drawing that mouse doing decidedly un-Disney-like things, including dealing drugs and going down on a female companion. It’s hysterical actually, and it’s amazing what they’ve done to keep that mouse under wraps, but The Mouse Liberation Front lives on, 40 years later.

Also included was Jammie Thomas. Remember her? The single mother who made less than $4,000 annually, but the RIAA decided it would be okay to fine her $222,220 for uploading 24 songs to Kazaa? Yeah, that Jammie Thomas. It would take her the rest of her life to pay that off if she gave them every penny that ever came to her name. It’s ridiculous.

Copyrighting ideas is slowly ruining the creative future of the world. Check out this documentary. Watch it. Remix it. Share it. Enjoy it.

You can buy the DVD here, or you can find a torrent. Your choice. 😉 Also, you can find the entire documentary in eleven-ish parts over on YouTube.

The end credits cracked me right the fuck up last night. Here they are:

Check out this Girl Talk madness:

Crazy Brazilian DJs:

Dan O’Neill:



{March 26, 2010}   Truth and Beauty Bombs

Dear Joey Comeau,
I think you’re awesome.
Sincerely,
That Girl With A Blog

Seriously, if you haven’t checked out A Softer World yet, do it. This is one of my particular favorites:

Ooooh, or this one:

Or this one:

Also, Joey Comeau is my hero. Check these out from the site:

“I think the best life would be one that’s lived off the grid. No bills, your name in no government databases. No real proof you’re even who you say you are, aside from, you know, being who you say you are. I don’t mean living in a mountain hut with solar power and drinking well water. I think nature’s beautiful and all, but I don’t have any desire to live in it. I need to live in a city. I need pay as you go cell phones in fake names, wireless access stolen or borrowed from coffee shops and people using old or no encryption on their home networks. Taking knife fighting classes on the weekend! Learning Cantonese and Hindi and how to pick locks. Getting all sorts of skills so that when your mind starts going, and you’re a crazy raving bum, at least you’re picking their pockets while raving in a foreign language at smug college kids on the street. At least you’re always gonna be able to eat.”

Also, he recently just got rid of all of his books and DVDs. If you know me, you know what a huge deal that is.

As Joey says:

“I am moving out, and I don’t want anything weighing me down! What if I want to get a job on an ocean liner? Or bare knuckle boxing in Hong Kong? Will my apartment really need all three Ocean’s Eleven moves? Will I really need two versions of Sleepaway Camp? I suspect not.”

I sigh and remember living out of a backpack. It was…fantastic. Plus, he’s Canadian. w00t w00t for Canada! Is Enid a Canadian thing (read his Live Journal)? Can you answer me this Joey Comeau? Or you, Barenaked Ladies? I love the name Enid. I want to be Canadian.

Besides the website, you can check him out on Myspace, Live Journal, and Twitter. Make sure to check out Overqualified, over on the Softer World site.

I don’t want to leave Emily Horne out either…the other half of A Softer World. She’s awesome, too. And she takes awesome pictures. You can check out her photoblog on the site, I Blame the Sea.

Ooooh, and check this out, too. I followed that story religiously, it kicked so much ass.



Budai's Pinball MachineWell, once again, the PAPA Tournament has come and gone and I find myself with an intense longing for pinball and bad carpeting.

I did terrible this year, as I always do, but I had loads and loads of fun. I sunk more tokens into that machine on the left than I though humanly possible. I was kinda bummed that we had to use tokens this year. I came with rolls of quarters in tow for this, dammit. I could have put them in my fists and punched bitches. It was amazing to see this machine in real life though. Pictures do not do justice to the “hippy-dippy” ness of it. And yes, those girls have ice cream. I don’t know why this pleases me so much, but it does.

Bumper ActionThe sheer amount of patience required for this would make me go insane. Upon meeting Mike Budai, it seems that my brain died. I had so many questions regarding the building of this, and I seemed to have forgotten them all. Also, might have been all that tequila consumed before we got there. Goddamn birthday margaritas. What did I expect? From what I remember, he found this machine in working order, and art-ed it up. It seems like it would be so intimidating, with the sheer amount of space to fill in addition to the limitations provided by bumpers and flippers and whatnot. It turned out so super awesome, though, and I think I won the most on that one. I could have imagined that, however.

Me and Mike Budai!<- Hey! That’s me and Mike Budai! Look at that. I got some sweet merch and lotsa pictures. I swear, if it wasn’t for said merch and sweet pics, I may not have actually believed that Friday happened. At this point, I was stuttering and sweating and trying not to sound like a ‘tard. I think I failed. And just so you know, Mike Budai has a kickass stern face. See all those pinball machines in the background? Imagine that, but sooooo many more. It’s amazing the amount of pinball machines they can fit in this place. And seriously, they had both Joust AND Dig Dug. What more can you ask for. Well, I could politely request that they were in working order, but it was nice to be able to just gaze longingly at them. And perhaps drool a little. Not enough to damage the goods, I promise.

Brian Holderman's Machine

This machine was super sweet, too. You know, I’ve seen Brian Holderman’s work before and enjoyed it, but never really knew who did it. So now, it’s nice to be able to put a name with an image. I think he did a shirt for the Arts Festival this spring? I could be totally wrong on that one, though. If you click on that picture there, it’ll take you to his website, full of fun, cutesy, creepy little things. And some more pinball love. I feel like I’m so out of touch with Pittsburgh anymore, but that’s a whole other blog, I suppose. Long story short: It’s awesome to see so many talented people coming out of the woodwork these days. And to see so many of them working together. And dear god, I love this style. It’s everything I’ve ever wanted in a Pittsburgh art scene!

Drunken birthday times!Anyway, back to the birthday festivities! Somehow, we conviced Mike to come to Cantley’s. How that happened, I’m not even sure, but it rocked my evening. We had some celebratory birthday drinks and I talked his ear off. He’s an excellent conversationalist though. Everything from art to music to skating to marriage to peanut butter. Yes ladies, he’s married. After that, the good people that are my friends dragged my drunk ass home and we played silly games until the wee hours of the morning and, somehow, continued drinking. I thought that this was a fabulous idea…until I woke up with a killer hangover at 3pm on Saturday and had to go to my mother’s house for dinner. Mom food is some serious hangover goodness, though. Pizza rolls and chocolate milk, I could not ask for anything more.

Thanks to everyone who made it happen! You guys are awesome!



{August 13, 2009}   PAPA Love!

PAPAI looooooooove pinball. And it just so happens that the PAPA (Professional Amateur Pinball Association) Tournament is in my hometown…and on my birthday.

The glorious people associated with PAPA have transformed an old warehouse into a pinball haven! Oh the sounds of flippers and geekdom. Actually, I knew people that worked in that warehouse years ago…they made those hair net things that go around turkeys. Now, it’s pinball. Who’da guessed?

Budai Pinball Machine

Mike Budai's Pinball Machine

And know what makes it even better this year? MIKE BUDAI MADE A PINBALL MACHINE! It will be there. I might dry hump it a little. He’ll also be there, at least on Saturday morning. I am not the keeper of Mike Budai’s schedule, but I hope to have a run in. His birthday was yesterday…go send him some birthday love here or here.

Here’s the schedule for this years festivities:

August 13 – 11am – 12am
August 14 – 9:30am – 2am
August 15 – 8:30am – 3am. Wow. That’s THIRTEEN AND A HALF hours of hot pinball action. Fuck yeaaaah.
August 16 – 9:30am – 5:30pm

Budai Pinball Print

Mr. Budai will be selling similar prints at the tournament this year!

See the site for actual registration times. I don’t do the whole competitive pinball thing, but I will surely lose my life savings in quarters.

That’s FIFTY FOUR hours of pinball. Oh sweet jeebus, help me. To quote some Fear and Loathing: “…know your dope fiend. Your life may depend on it. You won’t be able to see his eyes because of tea shades, and his pants will be encrusted with semen from constantly jacking off when he can’t find a rape victim.” Except it’s beer and pinball, not semen and rape. The dope would be okay though.



{August 6, 2009}   Obama A Socialist? Really?

Obama JokerFrom Greg Gutfield, host of Red Eye:

Posters of President Obama made up as Heath Ledger’s Joker with “socialism” written below have been showing up around Los Angeles and it’s being greeted with outrage-y outrage from the typically outraged.

Some are calling it racist, others are calling it “dangerous”; I’m calling it: “Steve” — which is Greg for “boring.”

The Web site Newsbusters points out that — after all — that former President Bush had been portrayed as everything from Dracula to the Joker to worse: a Texan! And, while media hacks point out that criticizing Obama is unfair because he’s only been on the job for six months, that’s bat poop.

Hatred for Bush began the moment he took office and Sarah Palin was only around for a few weeks before lefties were wearing T-shirts with her face and a vulgar word beneath it (hint: It rhymes with bunt.)

And besides, this Obama Joker face only elevates his hip persona and it’s honest. Seriously, we live in a culture where anti-heroes have replaced heroes — hence Ledger’s joker is far cooler than Bale’s Batman. (At least the Joker didn’t yell at his mom at the premiere.)

The Joker scoffed at tradition, reveled in post-modern humor and, more importantly, was played by a dead guy. You can’t get any cooler than that, even if, like me, you do Pilates wearing only body paint.

Finally, as so many Obama-lovers point out, our president is more than a president, he’s a pop culture icon — and you can’t go more than five feet without seeing a shirt, a button or a jock strap with his face plastered on it

At least with these new posters, the media has a message.

Another cultural pop-shot on Obama. If this poster was designed to be a smear campaign for Obama, I would have to say EPIC FAIL. Reportedly, Obama had one of the highest percentages of young voters…ever.

Excuse me? Was anyone awake for Halloween last year? Did you not see millions upon million of people 13-35 dressed as Heath Ledger’s Joker?

Really, I could get into the rant again about how I’m a huge fucking socialist, but why bother when you can read it here.

Honestly, I think it’s pretty sweet. I wish people were able to have a Socialist government without spazzing the fuck out. And did you ever notice that it’s always the well-to-do who bitch about Socialism? The trickle down theory has obviously worked SO WELL, let’s keep it up! Yeah, it’s worked so well, for the already rich.

You know, even with this whole health care situation at the moment…Adam and I were sitting on the couch watching the news one morning last week and there were talking about it. If it meant that every American would have health insurance, I would gladly take a percentage out of my paycheck. If taking money out of my paycheck gives health insurance to people like say, my husband, or the vast majority of my family who does not have health insurance, I’d jump on it in a heartbeat. I live paycheck to paycheck (if my paycheck lasts that long). Think about it, take ONE percent of everyone’s paycheck and with all the money grubbing-greedy bastards out there, that would end up being a lot. Like, a whole lot. If it means my husband has health insurance, PLEASE take that one percent. I’ll tell you what, I’LL take the one percent and MAIL IT TO YOU, okay? I’ll even pay for the envelope and postage!

People are now bitching about the Clunkers fo Cash For Cars program, saying that we’re just dumping our debt onto the next generation. WTF do they think has been happening for the last hundreds of years? If the goverment was so great before, can you tell me why I have no fucking Social Security?

Jesus. Every president will be worse than the last to someone. Every. Single. Time. What ever happened to working together? What I see is a lot of people complaining and not one single person proposing other options.

It’s easy to tell someone when they’re wrong, but that doesn’t make you right!

And then, there’s this. There should just be an audio clip with children shouting, “HOORAY CAPITALISM!”.



{March 30, 2009}   Mike Budai

Mike Budai is an amazing artist and Pittsburgh native, to boot. I can’t even tell you the first time that I heard of him or saw his artwork, I think it might have been on the cover of the Pittsburgh City Paper…maybe for the Arts Festival? Either way, that Arts Festival was the first time I got to purchase a little piece of Mike Budai goodness, which was this shirt:

Mike BudaiI absolutely love this shirt. It was already sooooo soft when I bought it and it’s only gotten better. I remember seeing it in the booth at the Arts Fesitval and jumping up and down like a little kid, screaming at my husband to stop so I could buy this, haha. Oh, good times. From what I remember, it was really reasonably priced, too. It’s held up pretty well as far as the printing goes. The only thing is that I now have a few small holes in the front from opening beer bottles with it. Oops, sorry, Mike.

 

 

 

Mike Budai

My third encounter with Budai’s work was the PAPA tournement held in Carnegie. Seriously, this guy does shirts for pinball, how can you not love him!? I actually had no idea that he was doing the shirts for this until I went to buy one. Mine is not this one, however, the one that I got is a dark brown with two hamster-like creatures on the back playing with a pinball. It’s adorable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mike BudaiThen, last but not least, I found him on Myspace. Hooray. So now, I can keep up with all of the awesomeness that is Mike Budai. The pic on the left is the current background on my work desktop, it makes me happy.

Seriously, check this guy out and support your local art scene, Pittsburgh-ers!!!

Mike Budai’s Myspace



et cetera
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