Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas 2011: My Brother vs. Elephant Seal

Christmas is a time to reflect on the important things in life. Naturally, on Christmas morning, my family gathered around the dining table while my little brother (now a grown man) argued that he could kill an elephant seal with his bare hands. Here is a summary of his (actual) talking points:

1) Running
According to my brother, elephant seals have a "maximum land speed of 5 miles/hour." He recommends sprinting away and having it chase you to tire it out before engaging it in combat. I applaud the fact that his first move in a fight is to run away.

2) Poor turning radius
Run in a circle around the seal, then brace yourself behind it. Because of its "poor turning radius," (said with the passion of someone who had personally measured it) it will be unable to attack. This would be the perfect time to trash-talk the seal, i.e. "Hey, elephant seal! Yo momma so fat she easily survived the winter with a adequate insulation of blubber!" [there may be some translation error]

3) Poke eyes
My brother then instructs to poke out its eyes from behind. Much like hurricanes and small children, the elephant seals' eyes are its weakest point.

4) Speed over power
He argues that while the seal is more powerful, he is faster. He makes an analogy to Dragonball Z, but since my Nerd Licence expired back in 2006, I didn't quite understand what this had to do with him poking a seal in the eye with his fingers.

5) Confounding factors
My brother grants that, in a cage match, the elephant seal is likely to win due to the confined space.

All of this took place over the course of half an hour. On Christmas.

My response: "Here's why you would lose to an elephant seal: Oh, no! It's too late! It's already killed you."

My mom's response: "This is the stupidest thing I have ever heard."

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Holiday Special, featuring the Swedish Piñata and Kurt Vonnegut's "Gingerbreadhouse 5"

To celebrate winter break, I decided to have a holiday brunch and explore the season's decorations around Chicago.

Pictured above: An adorable Swedish Piñata. Every year, the neighborhood children celebrate by breaking it open with a stick of knotted, Swedish bread, and then they gather up all the meatballs and pieces of Ikea furniture that fall out. A special prize goes to the first child to make a shoddily constructed chair.

Pictured above: A Wicker Park statue celebrating its first slumlord, Jonathan Wicker. He is depicted with broom because he famously practiced witchcraft, which was why he is often referred to as Jonathan "The Unkillable" Wicker. He is still at large.

Pictured above: Soldiers guarding Lady Gregory, our destination for brunch. They are seen here decorated with medals for their bravery during the infamous Sugar Plum firebombing of Tinsel Village of the Second Christmas War.

Pictured above: A meatloaf empanada and Irish cheddar grits. Somewhere, both an Irishman and a Spaniard feel suddenly disgusted, but do not know why.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Insight into Madness

This past week, I gave a three-minute speech to my medical school class about futility in medicine, Greek mythology, and Camus. Although it went well(?), I realized that my notes for the talk appeared to be the handiwork of a madman.

Pictured above: My actual notes. NOT a threatening letter from a serial killer.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Tour of the Family Manor

My friends are always asking me, "Sai, tell me more about your humble upbringing." After I punch them in the throat and tell them they can't tell me what to do, I lean back in my rocking chair, take off my straw hat, and chew on a piece of hay, and I tell them of my mansion in Topeka, KS.

It is a simple home, with ABSOLUTELY NO HISTORY OF GRUESOME MURDERS/HAUNTINGS. You can't prove any of those skeletons were human. Anyway, the house is full of many lovely amenities, including locks conveniently placed on the outside of the doors of each of the bedrooms, allowing the extra rooms to be rented out as a combination Bed and Breakfast/Minor Security Prison.

Pictured above: The dining room is joined with the kitchen, which allows the residents of the manor to watch over their food preparation by the servants. This is particularly helpful if your waitstaff is not to be trusted and you fear a violent, class-based insurrection.

The backyard is spacious with handy rain-warning system for the weather-conscious owner. If it begins to rain heavily, the pipes burst instantly, flooding the basement, warning the occupant to bring an umbrella before going outside.

Pictured above: The living room is nicknamed "The Den" because of its cozy couches. And the den of foxes that feed off table scraps and visiting children.

So, if you are ever in the neighborhood or are a white-collar criminal, come on down!

Pictured above: elegance!