Keep It Simple, Stupid.

By now, you are all probably sick and tired of seeing my “Thank you.” or “Thanks, you guys.” or “Thank you for your kind words” in the Tsavo, Sean Percival and my new gig at Twirlit’s threads.

I truly am grateful to everyone for sharing on FriendFeed and even Twitter but can’t find the right words. So I end up sounding  extremely LAME — almost obligatory.

Before you judge me, there is good reason for my lameness.

I swear!

So given this opportunity, I may as well let it all out, and have Google index this post forever and ever and… googleplex? Whatever. But heck, we only live once, right? So here goes:

  1. I suck at accepting compliments. I have foot in the mouth moments and come off sounding… well… stupid.
  2. Queen of FriendFeedMORTIFIES me. Though flattering, deemed “Queen of XXX” brings me back to first grade, and how a 4th grader beat me up for telling her I was the “queen of the playground”. So I learned the hard way: Do not boss people around or try to be something you’re not — and I am definitely not a queen of a Social Networking site.
  3. Focused attention (even if it’s good) embarrasses the CRAP out of me. (my face is flaming red, even right now). When I get embarrassed, I get flustered. When I am flustered, I ramble, and when I ramble, I’m incoherent and incoherent people = not fun to listen to.

Given my past blunders, when the time comes to show appreciation, I repeatedly tell myself: “MONA KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT AND STICK TO SIMPLY SAYING THANK YOU” … so that’s what I did.

That said, at the risk of sounding like a complete cornball, I am going to attempt articulating what I mean by my “Thank you”s.

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Gingerbread Houses – Have You Ever Made One?

So last week on Twirlit, I posted about Gingerbread Houses and how I’ve come across some that just blow my mind. I for one, have zero artistic ability (and no Internet shame) so I’ll share here what I didn’t share on Twirlit… My personal experience.

Seriously, the one time I attempted to construct one, it turned out all sorts of wrong. I got a kit since it seemed mindless, simple, and FAIL proof – right? Well… check this out:

retardedgingerbread
FAIL

I followed the directions and it still turned out like that. How is that even possible? (picture circa 2005ish) Since then, I have Gingerbread House TRAUMA and have not attempted to make another.

Have you ever made one?

15 FAQs About 3G iPhone Unlocking I’m too much of an A-hole to Individually Respond to

unlock_iphone_anysim-1So the 3G iPhone unlocking software release, due out on New Year’s Eve is being talked about on the Internet. The Dev-Team released a demo video of said software, ‘yellowsn0w’, working its magic by effortlessly switching the 3G iPhone from AT&T’s network to T-mobile’s, and actually made a call.

…sounds bad ass but um HUH? – seemed like the general consensus cuz I got A LOT of people asking me to explain. Don’t lie, your IMs, texts, and e-mails prove it.

Though fret not, even some geek friends have asked me privately via Twitter DMs, e-mail, and Facebook messages what this crap is all about. So you’re not totally technologically idiotic.

Well – since I am an asshole, have no patience, and sure as heck not going to respond to  every email, IM, DM, etc., etc., I consolidated the 15 most frequently asked questions here. Kinda like my Christmas gift to you guys? And if you don’t have an iPhone – well you’re assed the EF out. This is the only thing I’m giving this season. ;)

Any which way, here we go! Continue reading

iPhone’s Biggest Problem is Not the Firmware or Hardware

iphone-final-attack-2-1

It is the stupid, piece of crap, totally evil network.

I have lived and visited countless cities across the US of A.
I have been on Sprint, T-mobile, Verizon, and AT&T.
I used all four networks across those countless cities.
AT&T is still the worst. network. EVER.

Since my 2007 comparison, I continue experiencing:

  • Echo
  • Dropped calls
  • FAILed connections
  • Bizarre background buzz
  • SMS errors
  • Voicemail errors
  • …shall I continue?

AT&T’s stagnancy and their failure to improve is apalling.
The only thing that went up is the damn pricing.
I truly truly dislike AT&T.

So much so, I wish somehow, some way, AT&T’s towers will be blown to bits. Completely dissipated, so they can start from ground up and rebuild better towers. You know, just like the other evil Empire’s super weapon was destroyed and the Death Star II was constructed? It was a more superior battle station, though it ended up being destructed. Actually, that sounds like a good solution since I refuse to Jailbreak my phone and hop on T-mobile’s network.

Anyone down to start a Rebel Alliance?

(image borrowed from Giz, found Googling “AT&T” and “evil”, made by Jesus Diaz. Go figure. Oh – the chicken scratch is mine)
BTW there’s a great discussion over at FF regarding real user experiences. Lots of people from various parts of the country weighing in. Come join! http://bit.ly/MB4G

iPods Saved Apple in 2001 [Jobs Throwback]


Wow.

Watching Steve Jobs debut the iPod in 2001, brought me back to elementary school and annual assemblies. Does anyone remember those? My school would have an annual “all school special assembly”, with a “surprise guest”, usually a magician or a fire breathing clown.

Oh but I digress. So one year later at the WWDC, Apple killed off Mac OS 9 on a huge stage filled with smoke and a coffin. What a difference. Can you blame me for thinking iPods saved Apple? ;)

See other notable Steve Jobs moments at maclife.

Is Steve Jobs an Evil Dictator or Our Savior?

There was an article on Forbes.com about a Finnish cyber securities firm discovering malware for the iPhone named”Mobile Spy”. For $99 a year, you can monitor calls, mobile web activities, and SMS this software logs, through your Mobile Spy account.

But fret not, Mobile Spy is not a security risk since it needs to be physically installed in the phone you want to monitor. So unless someone has access to your handset or you have a psycho stalker, an ex that turned psycho stalker, or you choose to have relationships with psycho stalkers (no judgements, to each their own!) that can access your phone, you’re safe. Now Spyware/malware, or what have you, is not breaking technology and has been around since I was an Internet n00b.

But this got me thinking. Continue reading

To the Undecideds: It is True What they Say. “iPhone or NO phone”

I used to be an early adopter, especially with all things mobile. I had to have everything first. From the Treo family (300, 600, 650), Hitachi’s monster PocketPC, Samsung’s compact Palm, MotoQ, I was addicted to all multi-tasking (mainly CDMA) phones and wasted invested a lot. I blame my Japanese genes, since in Japan, we go through electronics like new parents go through diapers. (That analogy was for you, LG)

Then, I grew-up. I was the cautious consumer for a few years, waiting for feedback before actually purchasing. I controlled urges. The only “new” technology I jumped on was MMS (multi media messaging) and stuck with the same handset for three years. A complete geek faux-paux. Finally, I was no longer an early adopter.

Until 2007.

If you remember, last year was a mobile junkie’s dream and worst nightmare. The industry stepped up their phone games launching products and services targeted beyond business users. And it worked. 2007 changed the American mobile industry. Continue reading

Five Reasons to Look Forward to Britney’s Comeback

britney_cheetos_1

As embarrassed as this is to admit, I am fascinated by Brit-Brit. She seems to have pulled herself together recently, and doing quite well. Though she may never be back to her peak, five reasons why I am looking forward to her regaining the princess of pop crown:

  1. Wigs could be the new styling products
    Forget 30 dollar shampoos and 50 dollar hair masks. I’m hoping when Brit-Brit shaves her head again, it will be the new thing and wigs will be the new trend. It would cut my primping time down to 30 minutes (only make-up).
  2. Cheetos, gas stations, and dirty floors.
    Why wouldn’t you want to see another glimpse of our beloved Britney strolling out of a gas station bathroom barefoot, shoveling Cheetos in her mouth?
  3. Her grocery basket pictures
    I would be lying if we denied our addiction to her grocery carts’ photos. How can you not be amazed by the mountain of chips, frozen dinners, and processed foods?
  4. Another make out session with her Madgesty?
    Her daily attire may consist of cork shoes with gym pants, but she cleans up nicely. I am straight, but her onstage saliva swap with Madonna was H-O-T
  5. Sean Preston and Jayden Spears
    And because we want to see the most adorable spawns of two train wrecks grow up taken care of.

Good luck, Britney! And please duet with the other nutjob forgotten popstar again.

Countdown to Christmas: Obligatory Gourmet Crap

Mk. I am slacking on the Countdown to Christmas series, but OH WELL. Anyway not a fan of giving gourmet shit as gifts – especially since it kinda feels impersonal. But since people around me must feel the need to show off (kidding!) all the gourmet, fancy schmancy crap is going to be listed. I mean – what is there to explain, right? So here we go:

alice-chocolate

Chocolaté

I am no chocolate expert.
All I know are my favorite places. Hope it helps:

  • Alice I love love LOVE their packaging. So ultra feminine. It is the little things that count.
  • Marie Belle Their solid chocolates are not out of this world amazing, but their hot chocolate = WIN
  • Vosges Haut-Chocolat Not only do they use unique ingredients (bacon, wasabi, etc.), the packaging, presentation… the details are phenomenal. One of my favorite chocolatiers. EVER
  • SF Truffle Dude The actual establishment name is Five Star Truffles, but I call it the SF Truffle Dude, since I keep forgetting the name. ANYway, run by one man, this quaint store in SF is seriously OFF THE HOOK. Possibly the best truffle shop in SF. And that is quite a bold statement.

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My Macbook AC Adapter Sparks. SPARKS

electrocution06

If killing electronics were a crime, I would have a life sentence.

I wish I could blame it on bad luck, but I am a klutz. Electronics have never been in my possession longer than three years – intact. If I don’t murder it, I lose them. To give a quick idea:

  • My Treo 600 plunged to its death… from my unzipped purse to the sidewalk.
  • The replacement, a Treo 650 drowned – it decided to go swimming. In a pool. Involuntarily.
  • That replacement, the Treo 700p got flattened by a cab – after it jumped out of my grasp. Fine, I dropped it.

And phones aren’t the only victims.

  • My first Macbook’s LCD cracked – a partition fell on it.
  • That replacement, a Macbook pro was electrocuted – I spilled something on the keyboard and there were some sparks between the “W” and “E”.

…on and on the fatality list goes. If you’re interested, let me know and I’ll compile a complete dossier. ANYway, my current Macbook, I guard with my life, take care of, primp, and pamper. It has lasted a little over a year but there is one problem. Every single time I plug the AC into an outlet, there are sparks. SPARKS.

Am I doing something wrong? If someone – anyone knows the answer, please help. And please do not tell me I am being dramatic. Given my history, can you blame me?

Personally, I think the adapter is conspiring for redemption – given my past sins. It is gonna take one for the team – or attempting to.

Rant Warning: F*ckin Facebook, You Smart MotherEFers

facebook-customized-imgjpg-jpeg-image-512x302-pixelsFacebook is filled with some smart ass motherfuckers.

They came right when Gen XYZ (or whatever we’re called) became fed up with Myspace. You know, the other clusterfuck site where people’s personal spaces are overloaded by Flash and glitter? Where profile pictures are simply shameless and the nicknames are atrocious. I swear, if I see another: ~tHeOnEuLoSt~ and 2GooD4U I will slit my wrist a trillion times over (that’s just an analogy, I am not suicidal)

In came Facebook and sold us. Their users are real people with real information. Not only did they grab the fed up on Myspace crowd, they created an avenue everyone and their mothers (literally) can use.  They filled a need.

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Swiss Cheese for Feet = WHY?

Seriously. These are my worst nightmare

Pile-o-ugly

Simply, blasphemous.

As if the colors aren’t bad enough, they’re rubber. RUBBER. Talk about hazardous. What happens when there’s a fire? Or the asphalt is scalding? Or you happen to trip in front of a hot motorcycle muffler and land with your feet up? Those suckers will burn and stick to your feet!
disclaimer: NOT based on actual research but my imagination. please don’t sue me for slander. k? thanks.

On top of that, there’s too much foot exposure going on.
And the holes on the side are just ALL sortsa wrong.
I’m sorry (not really) but I do not want to see cracked, ashy heels AND feet… not that I stare at strangers’ feet, but seriously. When you utilize public transpo as much as I do, it’s hard not seeing them and get outright disgusted. Simply put, Crocs are a waste of material and the ULTIMATE fashion faux-pauxs.

Why can’t they just… disappear? Dissipate? Remove itself from the world?!

BTW, these “actually cute Croc” boots? Do not count as Crocs.
For some reason this entry got A LOT of feedback on Facebook. You can see all the funny comments here.

Only in America: Deep Fried HOLY WTFs

You guys know I am obsessed with the Luther Burger, have challenged to consume a 12lb burger (will blog about that some other time), and infatuated by bizarre foods, but Asylum magazine’s: “Deadliest Dishes — 15 Delicacies That Might Kill You” even shocked me. It is not normal practice for me to post lists, but this one is a serious must see. Behold! A few of the highlights:

hot-beef-sundae1

A steaming hot beef sundae, served with a pile of EFin HEART ATTACK. WHY would anyone think to pile beef, top it with chocolate syrup lookin’ like gravy, then top that with a mound of cheese? Who the f*ck concocts something like that? WHO?

photo-gallery-12

Deep fried burger. As if a burger, with cheese, and grease isn’t already bad enough, some GENIUS thought of throwing it into a deep fryer. To make it even worse, it’s served with a side of fries. The least they could’ve done was make it half coleslaw. HELLLL-O coronary cloggage!

deep-fried-coke2
If you’re gonna shove a deep fried burger down your hatch, why not wash it down with a deep fried Coke. COKE THAT IS DEEP FRIED. HOW someone managed to toss liquid sugar into a fryer is way over my head. That is probably why the Coke looks like rabbit poo, but maybe I didn’t know the solid form of liquids are pellets, hence the reason  I would never be able to accomplish such genius. At any which way: So. Ultra. Gross.

photo-gallery1Chicken fried bacon…? I turned my head right. Then I turned it to the left. I even picked up my laptop and put the screen over my head to see if it would look…better(?) from various angles. But I still can not understand. WHAT ARE THOSE?! Is that really bacon in there? The pink that’s peeking out from the deep fried skin looks all sorts of weird. I love chicken and I looooooove me some bacon but I DO NOT want that. Yuck.

These foods are specialty / signature dishes of the great ‘ole U.S. of A., and though they may seem interesting? It is one of the culprits of why our country is the fattest nation in the world. Now please excuse me – gonna go grab some KFC. You know? Some REAL deep fried foods? HA.

See the entire list here.

Surprise! A DIY Sushi Concoction That Isn’t Gross

img_7265a Remember how I pissed off the maker of the most disgusting looking homemade sushi mess? Well – surprise! These sushi cupcakes look good enough to eat, serve, and well… show-off. Actually, they are quite phenomenal and as awesome as the iPhone cupcakes.

Vivian of vpennyw made these cupcakes for John – her bf? husband? oh, who cares, these things are EFin amazing and whoever John is, is a very very VERY lucky man.

From her blog:

“Pretty much vanilla and lemon cupcakes and vanilla frosting… then black/green fondant for seaweed… and coconut or white sprinkles for “rice”..

As for the toppings..
Jellybeans for the “eggs” (upper right)
a piece of lemon cake for the Tamago (Egg) Roll (lower Right),
A mini marshmallow, a few sour straws, and pieces of gummy worms for the California Roll, (upper middle),
A cut berry gummy for the Tuna Roll (lower middle),
Cut-up orange gummy slices for the Salmon (upper left)
Cut-up peach gummies for Tuna (middle left)
And Food-color-spray-painted marshmallows for the Shrimp (lower left)…”

Simply, amazing.
(Thanks, Jill)

What is this OpenID Everyone Speaks Of?

Lately, there seems to be a lot of talks about OpenID / OAuth, privacy, owning information, decentralizing, centralizing, user-centric, SSL, profiling, identity, and other stuff ? (for a lack of a better term.)

I know it is some way relevant to me, since I see the logo everywhere I go. And I have an inkling OpenID is somehow important, since I am hearing about it a lot. And uhhh there was even a summit for OpenID and OAuth.

Well. I don’t know about you, but to me? OpenID is nothing but a bunch of gibberish.

  1. Too much effort.
    I am so used to logging in with a username and or handle, the concept of using a URL is ludicrous. A six letter username is already too much effort, to add mywebsite dot domain dot com each and every single time I need to log-in is blasphemy. Oh, nevermind password managing programs I use, ok? Thanks.
  2. Too confusing.
    Flickr, WordPress, Technorati, Yahoo, Blogger, LiveDoor, LiveJournal, blah blah blah – the OpenID provider list goes on and on. I am signed up for and use almost all OpenID service providers. Meaning, I already own an OpenID. Several, even, but how do I claim them? And what is this claim they speak of? Why can’t I just log into a site that supports OpenID with my respective URLs? Where and how do I start? WHY can’t this be more simple? See? The questions start and maybe I am an idiot, but for the life of me, I can not figure out how to get started.
  3. Why is this relevant to me?
    I am not going to lie. I log into almost all my accounts on unsecure Internet connections. Identity theft is irrelevant to me, since my identity has never been stolen. I am the last person to be anal about privacy. Call me naive, but in my sheltered world, confidential information is viewed via proprietary services (corporate server, apps, etc.) anyway, and I trust my system administrators. In my 10 years of working in corporations large and small, my sys admins have protected any security leaks. All I know (choose to know?) is when making, receiving, or transferring any financial transactions, I check the URL to make sure it reads: “https”. WHY should I care?

I know in theory, OpenID is a good idea. But really, why does owning my information pertain to me? How is this relevant to my daily usage? After all, it’s not like merchants (Ebay, Paypal, financial institutions, etc.) are partnered with OpenID. So unless OpenID becomes more intuitive, or there’s a reallllly good motivating factor for me to actually figure that crap out? I am sticking with dedicated usernames and passwords.

Do you know something I don’t know? If so, do please enlighten me.

Awesome discussion as well here. :)

Countdown to Christmas: Top 3 Ultra Girly Bath Crap Specialty Brands

The United States does not have that big of a bath culture, but there is nothing more therapeutic and relaxing than a bath. Or the scent of these products in your bathroom. Trust me. Sometimes the effects of the essential oils are more positive on females than Midol, alcohol, or Midol with alcohol. Hey, whatever floats your boat. I don’t judge.

Believe it or not, I do have a girly high maintenance side and the following is proof. While all my American friends head to Bath and Body, Body Shop, Sephora, and other mall stores, I only indulge in specialty stores and brands.

Sabon NYC

OMG how I love Sabon. Seriously. They’re Israeli products that use salts from the Black Dead Sea (thanks, Shan) and holy wow everything from here RULES. This is only one of the reasons I am glad to be back in Manhattan. I can physically go to the store, pick up, smell, touch, and feel the products, instead of buying them online. These guys are handmade, so every piece is unique. I particularly love the packaging of the lotions. -sigh- My recommendations: bath bombs, soaps, and lotions. Carrot smells good, and it’s not because I love carrot cake. Visit the site here.

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Countdown to Christmas: Edible Japanese-y Gifts ($$$$)

Okay. I never play up my Japanese roots. I would be lying if I said I was sorry for I am not. I am too EFin impatient to explain anything that has to do with my culture to those unfamiliar. But it’s Christmas, holidays, whatever the PC (not hardware) term is, and I am in the spirit of giving. So for any and all that may be interested in giving something Japanese-y, I hope this will help. Be forewarned if you’re on a budget I would recommend closing this window. Hey – it’s not my fault my people’s stuff is pricey.

Minamoto Kitchoan

和菓子 (wagashi) is what we call them and they are a gourmet delicacy. The site has variations of confectionaries, but my recommendation is 練り切り(nerikiri), pictured right. From the ingredients, preparation, presentation, packaging, to the details, time, care, and attention that goes into these suckers, the pricing is a steal. Each tiny circle or square symbolizes something. Please don’t ask what they symbolize, since I have no clue. All I know is that everything is seasonal. From the patterns, colors, shapes, and sizes, there are rules to what can be made when. Since it is winter, there are wintery (?) shapes. How do they taste? Think smooth and velvety texture to the bite, and once it hits your mouth, a thin veil of sweetness floats through your mouth. Best served with authentic Japanese Green Tea 緑茶 (ryoku-cha) Seriously, these are my absolutely favorites. They were my mom’s favorites, and that is why they are first. Biased? HELL YES. It’s MY list afterall. Image via elaurant33’s flickr Minamoto Kitchoan’s site here.

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Countdown to Christmas: 5 Unique Edible Gifts (No Bacon)

Yes, with gifts, it’s the thought that counts. And as a recipient, it’s not okay to complain – bad manners even. However, I don’t know about you, but if I were to get a food gift, I would not want a fruit cake, Hickory Farms sausage, or holiday baked goods from Starbucks or something generic. So why not get a little creative with your gift giving? I’ll compile lists for gourmet edibles (chocolates, macarons, Japanese sweets, etc.) but here are some unconventional ideas you can’t buy jumping on Dean and Deluca, Williams Sonoma, Neiman, and Saks’ websites. :)

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