equivocality — Jeff Ngan's collection of thoughts, experiences, and projects, inspired by pretty much everything
23 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 10

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 10

22 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 9

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 9

21 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 8

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 8

20 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 7

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 7

19 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 6

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 6

15 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 5

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 5

14 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 4

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 4

13 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 3

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 3

12 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 2

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 2

11 Mar 07

New Hampshire: Part 1

Thumbnail: New Hampshire Part 1

09 Mar 07

Update: March '07

Thumbnail: Chewie
Thumbnail: Chewies gun
Thumbnail: Sled
Thumbnail: Sled
Thumbnail: Hot dog stand
Thumbnail: Ice snowflake
Thumbnail: Rideau Canal stairs
Thumbnail: Caricature

A design realignment

The prob­lem with hav­ing a spe­cific lay­out style is that it only caters to one mood or topic.

My entries cover a spec­trum of things, so I never stay sat­is­fied with one design.

In an attempt to achieve even more uni­ver­sal mid-tone min­i­mal­ism, I’ve re-aligned things a bit: more con­trast, bolder titles, com­po­si­tion to a ver­ti­cal rhythm, and a lack of that tit­u­lar cap­i­tal E that was taunt­ing my sense of alignment.

Let’s see how long this lasts.

Blogging milestone

The num­ber of com­ments I’ve received has exceeded the num­ber of entries I’ve writ­ten, the lat­ter of which passed 1000 this year. I remem­ber when I first started in 2002, using a basic con­tent man­age­ment sys­tem I wrote with Perl scripts. It didn’t even sup­port com­ments. Eventually I moved to Movable Type, and finally set­tled on WordPress.

I’m glad to say that I don’t get any more of those ran­dom one or two word com­ments that never actu­ally say any­thing, although they’re pretty com­mon on other blogs.

My com­menters are dif­fer­ent. They rule.

They give me feed­back, make me think, and fur­ther the dis­cus­sion of what I say.

Balls of Fury

Edit: I found out today that the release date has been pushed back until September. Very disappointing.

In this secret soci­ety, the com­pe­ti­tion is bru­tal and the stakes are high. It is the unsanc­tioned, under­ground, and utterly unhinged world of clan­des­tine Ping-Pong tour­na­ments. Down-and-out for­mer pro­fes­sional Ping-Pong phe­nom Randy Daytona (Dan Fogler) is sucked into this mael­strom when FBI Agent Rodriguez (George Lopez) recruits him.

Balls of Fury, a com­edy that mixes ping-pong, matrix effects, and Christopher Walken, comes out in less than a month. George Lopez’s Scarface impres­sion is spot on, and the fact that it’s based on Enter the Dragon (although the title comes from another Bruce Lee movie, Fist of Fury) gives it even more super awe­some flava.

My friends agreed to come watch it in the the­aters with me. Even Bronwen is going to make it, trav­el­ling over 700km to be here. I’ve been chomp­ing at the bit to see this since John sent me the trailer last year.

A trip to New Hamshire

This Sunday, I’ll be fly­ing to New Hampshire — with cohort Louise — for two weeks of train­ing. The sched­ule is pretty open, with nights and week­ends off, giv­ing us a chance to travel and explore.

I prob­a­bly won’t be stick­ing to my reg­u­lar Monday and Friday updates, but I’ll be post­ing when I get the chance.

Confidence and socia­bil­ity comes and goes in cycles for me. When I first found out about the trip I was at a low-point, so I wasn’t feel­ing strong enough to make extra plans. Such plans would have included tak­ing a few extra days off to meet Maggie (aka number18) at my trans­fer in Philly on the way back. One day I’ll get to meet her and take pic­tures of her.

The good thing is that I’m on an up-swing right now, so the excite­ment is start­ing to set­tle in my brain.

05 Mar 07

Rob And Mel's Wedding

Thumbnail: Caricature 
Thumbnail: Me and Mark 
Thumbnail: The head table 
Thumbnail: Wedding hall 
Thumbnail: Bridesmaids 
Thumbnail: Ally 
Thumbnail: Jeff and Mel's cousin 
Thumbnail: Signing the register 
Thumbnail: Jesse blows bubbles 
Thumbnail: The beer patch 
Thumbnail: Touch up 
Thumbnail: Riding the pony 
Thumbnail: Aaron meets up with Karen after the ceremony. 
Thumbnail: Garter fetch 

It was an enter­tain­ing night. A sit-where-you-please atmos­phere, devoid of stiff shirts and long speeches. Rob even donned his base­ball cap for the entire cer­e­mony. I got to know Mark bet­ter too, in the car and at the table.

The only thing that marred the evening was Sarah prov­ing her­self to be an idiot, devoid of any social graces or con­ver­sa­tion skills. At one point, she bril­liantly remarked that she “loves Johnny Cash” when the DJ put on Love Me Tender. Another per­son I put on my list of peo­ple to avoid like they’re com­ing at you with a bot­tle of horse semen.

I tried to get as much bright, high-contrast pho­tog­ra­phy as I could, play­ing around with both direct and bounced flash. I also got to try a dif­fer­ent photo work­flow, which involved sep­a­rat­ing the colour chan­nels and pulling out bits for con­trast. The 24-70mm is sup­posed to be the bread and but­ter of wed­ding pho­tog­ra­phers, and this makes per­fect sense to me now as it stayed on my cam­era for most of the night.

02 Mar 07

When I Die

When I die, let there be no obit­u­ar­ies or announce­ments, for the ones who should know, would know.

Let there be a gath­er­ing instead of a funeral, where my friends can relax and speak what they wish.

Let the dress be casual, for no one should be any­thing but them­selves around me.

Let there be men­tion of my flaws, for there would be no truth or human­ity with­out them.

Let there be humour and laugh­ter, for I love these things in my life.

Let there be no reli­gious ser­vice, for my life has been devoid of religion.

Let there be as much cel­e­bra­tion of my life as there is mourn­ing that it has ended.

Let every­one have a copy of Turn On The Bright Lights by which to remem­ber me.

Let my ashes be scat­tered, for I hope to carve my name on hearts, not marble.

26 Feb 07

Rob's Bachelor Party Weekend

Thumbnail: Aaron
Thumbnail: Aaron
Thumbnail: Jeff

As far as bach­e­lor par­ties go, Rob’s was a low-key deal. Seven of us in all. Half were from out of town, so we drove to Kingston to meet up.

Thumbnail: Lincoln Town Car
Thumbnail: Lincoln Logo

The first stop was Aaron’s dad’s house. Parked in his dri­ve­way was a 1980s Lincoln Continental Town Car, before they started to down­size the series. It’s a mas­sive car, with what looks like a com­plete couch in the back. As the coupe, it wasn’t even the full-size model. This is the only car that pimps teal.

Most of the day was spent giv­ing each other welts in speed­ball, which I learned is a testos­terone fused ver­sion of paint­ball. All speed and all accu­racy. I wasn’t used to a lack of con­ven­tional cover (in favour of inflat­a­bles), or the small play­ing area, but man­aged to sur­vive with­out any body hits.

Of course, being his bach­e­lor party week­end, we had to put Rob on his own team, though he didn’t quite find out until it hap­pened. This fol­lows the tra­di­tion of other frat­er­niz­ing cel­e­bra­tions, such as birth­day beats.

It was back to the hotel to get changed, and off to Rob’s favourite place to eat, which was a Chinese buf­fet. It also hap­pened to be Chinese New Year, so they had an entire roast suck­ling pig, though no one else dared to try it until I assured them it was safe.

More time was spent back at the hotel, in the hot tub, play­ing poker poker, break­ing elec­tric heaters in the exer­cise room.

Before leav­ing the next morn­ing, we went across the street to the con­ve­niently placed Golden Griddle, an all-you-can-eat break­fast buf­fet for the glut­to­nous masses. I’ve never been one to get their money’s worth out of buf­fets, but I’m sure that Rob and Aaron more than made up for my rel­a­tively small por­tion. I can’t imag­ine putting such lead into my stom­ach every week­end. Unlimited bacon and sausages should be reserved for bach­e­lor par­ties, busi­ness con­tracts, and maybe the occa­sional bris.

Drinking was lim­ited; Rob was still recov­er­ing from strep throat, as can be heard in the videos. More energy was spent mak­ing sure Sergio had a suc­cess­ful blind date; a tes­ta­ment to how much Rob takes care of his homies.

23 Feb 07

Presents For Chinese New Year's

This week, I received a small pack­age from Brenda and Jack.

Thumbnail: Chinese New Years card
Thumbnail: Paper napkins
Thumbnail: Chopsticks
Thumbnail: Chopstick rest
Thumbnail: Guylian chocolates
Thumbnail: T'ai Chi Book
Thumbnail: T'ai Chi Page

It really touched me. Not because of the amount of things in it, but because of what was in it.

A T’ai Chi hand­book. Dark, thin choco­lates; my favourite kind. A chop­stick rest in the shape of a cat. They even put money in a red enve­lope, fol­low­ing the Chinese tra­di­tion of wed­ded cou­ples giv­ing money to the unmar­ried. Everything in a red bag with red wrap­ping paper, the Chinese colour of luck. This isn’t their cul­ture, but they’ve made the effort to under­stand it. They prob­a­bly had to go out of their way to find this stuff, things which aren’t avail­able just anywhere.

I’ve done noth­ing to deserve this.

The funny thing is that Brenda and Jack are the par­ents of an ex. I can hear John warn­ing me, “They laced the choco­lates with arsenic”. I’ve been for­tu­nate enough to get along with the par­ents of many of my girl­friends. I used admit to Pat that I wish they could replace my own.

It made me won­der if some­times, in the back of my mind, I would stay in those rela­tion­ships because of them.

These are peo­ple who know me and my interests.

More than my own par­ents ever did.