Cute USB Hubs!

I was at Target the other day and bought a USB hub, but when I brought it home and plugged it in, the thing didn’t work! So I decided to poke around the interwebs and see what I could find. (For those of you who don’t know, a USB hub is a USB device that plugs in to one USB port and splits it into many. Think of it as a power strip for USB ports.)

Mouse USB hub

This mouse USB hub has four ports, one of each of its legs. They’re all USB 2.0 and it comes in a variety of colors. Check out the Mouse USB Hub at Brando.com.
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Used Book Store!

In the past couple of weeks I’ve discovered two used book stores, I don’t know if they are new or just new to me. They were all $1 (the second store had hardcovers for $2). I got:

  • Farenheit 451, Ray Bradbury (I’ve read this, but it was a long time ago so I think I’ll read again)
  • Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman
  • Girl with the Pearl Earring, Tracy Chevalier
  • The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • Catch 22, Joseph Heller
  • Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert
  • The Bridges of Madison County, Robert James Waller (I borrowed my mom’s copy, wanted one of my own)

Before you BAWWW at me for omg not having read such an so novel, know that I am already aware of the strange gaps in my education. Some of it is my fault, for example, taking every British lit class I possibly could in college left me woefully ignorant of American Lit in general. Also, I sometimes straight up skipped reading some assigned texts, simply because I didn’t have enough time to complete all of my assigned readings. Some of it was the result of progressive teachers I had in high school, who exposed me to contemporary authors (Keri Hulme, Alan Lightman, etc) instead of more “canon” authors, which got pushed by the wayside.

That’s why I’m excited about these used book stores, it will give me a chance to fill in the gaps of my education. Plus my goal this year was to read mostly ~literature~, so it seems this will help.

Shopping

Shocker, here I am on the left in jeans and a Threadless t-shirt.

Oh how I love to shop! Since I got my own job (actually, probably before…) I’ve been spending way too much money on things I can wear and play with rather than more practical things. When I was in college, my style was all about comfort. I worked in an office with a very laid-back dress code and went to school in between shifts, so I practically lived in jeans, t-shirts and sweatshirts. Busted Tees, Threadless and of course, my school’s Bookstore were staples. (Oh look, here’s me on the left wearing a Threadless tee and jeans!)

Eventually I graduated (escaped?) from University and decided I should start “dressing for the job I wanted, not the job I had,” so although I worked in a different office with a relaxed dress-code, I decided to cut myself off from Threadless and start buying more professional looking clothing. Easy dresses, separates, I was all about Express, Old Navy and Gap. I also like the dresses at Delias.com.

Now, I work from home and rarely have a reason to dress outside of sweats and t-shirts, so when I go out I want to look really nice, even if I’m just going grocery shopping. These days I’m a bit bored by Old Navy and Gap’s basic styles. Although they’re a great go-to for a solid tee shirt or cardigan, if I want something special, that’s not usually where I go. Lately, I’ve totally been inspired by J’s Everyday Fashion! I love her outfits, and I’ve been trying to emulate them. I’m all about H&M, LOFT and New York & Co. I love this Twisted Boat Neck Long Sleeve Tee (I have it in pink and ivory).

NY&C has some absolutely GORGEOUS cardigans right now! I snapped up this one in “Summer Watermelon Heathe” (what’s wrong with just saying pink?? lol) along with one of these adorable sparkly belts to go with it. I really wanted one of ruffle edged sweaters (the picture on the website totally doesn’t do it justice, it was so much cuter they way they styled it in store) but they were picked over. I guess I could have ordered online, but I’m an instant gratification kind of girl! :p

How would you describe your personal style? Where do you like to shop?

I love Etsy!

Last night I bought this beautiful scarf on Etsy for my upcoming trip to Tennessee, where I have convinced myself it will be blizzard-y and arctic-like conditions. In reality I’m not sure if it will even snow! I bought it from KnitFrekkles on Etsy. She has so many lovely scarves and cowls, I wanted to buy them all! Nevermind that I live in California and rarely have the need for a scarf…

Letterpress cards are another thing I love to buy on Etsy. I love pairing my gifts with a fun and original card, not something I picked up at Target. Dude and Chick is one of my favorites. ES Designs makes GORGEOUS jewelry, I’ve bought some as gifts but I have yet to buy some for myself! I even bought my wedding veil on Etsy from QG Designs.

Support your local artisans and buy on Etsy! That reminds me, I need some wedding cards…

Hollywood, Amoeba Music, Scientology and Chicken and Waffles!

One great thing about living close to a big city is being able to easily visit the awesome stores they have there. Yesterday I drove to Hollywood with my sister, brother, and a few of his friends to hit up Amoeba Music. The place was completely awesome! They have a HUGE selection of new and used CDs and records, from a WIDE variety of genres and artists. And that’s just the first floor! The second floor has a pretty decent selection of new and used DVDs.

I dug in immediately, looking for CDs from my favorite artists that were hard to find at the places I usually buy CDs, like Target and Best Buy. I ended up finding several CDs from artists like The Magnetic Fields, Leonard Cohen, Meiko, Priscilla Ahn, Eric Hutchinson, and many, many more. I don’t know if you noticed, but it’s pretty hard to find a CD in stores if it was released more than 6-12 months ago, or it’s not on the Billboard charts. I know what you’re thinking, why not buy online? I do buy online; that’s why I already had Meiko’s album before I saw it at Amoeba. But sometimes the added taxes and shipping costs increase the cost of the CD above what I’m willing to pay. And Amoeba has a LOT of used CDs, which lowers the cost even more. I ended up walking away with The Magnetic Field’s The Wayard Bus/Distant Plastic Trees, Leonard Cohen’s Various Positions, and a tribute to Leonard Cohen, I’m Your Fan, which includes performances by The Pixies, REM, and Nick Cave, to name a few. I also got a couple of Miyazaki DVD’s I’ve been meaning to pick up, but haven’t because for some reason, they cost quite a bit more than regular DVDs. Anyway, they were Whisper of the Heart, which I rented on NetFlix recently and loved, and The Cat Returns, which I downloaded and watched quite a while ago.

My sister got a few CDs, the Hits of Erasure, ABBA Gold, and the Sex and the City Soundtrack. She joked as we were driving home, listening to her CDs, that she was turning my car into a gay club, haha. ๐Ÿ™‚

After Amoeba, we waited outside for the rest of the party to be done shopping and I noticed that we could see the Church of Scientology’s location on Hollywood Blvd from a distance. It kinda creeped me out. It creeped me out even further when one of the guys in the party mentioned that the Scientology created CCHR headquarters, or Citizen’s Commission on Human Rights, was down the street just a little ways and they wanted to visit it out of morbid curiosity because inside there is a “museum” on psychiatry. We were all curious, so we decided to check it out. Turns out the museum is called “Psychiatry: An Industry of Death” and the “museum” was every bit as creepy as it sounds. It felt like I was walking into the Museum of Tolerance, a Holocaust museum, also in Los Angeles. It had all these exhibits showing the history of psychiatry, including of course shock treatment and lobotomy. CCHR blames the rise of Nazism and the Holocaust on psychiatry. It also had an exhibit with pictures of different celebrities and little descriptions underneath the pictures blaming psychiatry for their deaths. There was also a section that showed statistics on psychiatrists; supposedly more psychiatrists than physicians commit suicide, get divorces, etc. They also showed a big wall with pictures of psychiatrists behind bars for being convicted of various crimes, ranging from a hit-and-run fatality to rape and sexual assault of patients. And of course, there was a room blaming psychiatry for the Columbine school shootings and various other school shootings. All in all, it was quite disturbing and I wanted to get out of there as soon as possible. Chris and his friends were irritated and angry about the museum, quick to point out the flaws of logic in the exhibits, but Teresa and I just wanted to leave.

Afterward we walked to Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles off of Gower and Sunset. It was so good! I was suspicious about the pairing of fried Chicken and waffles, but my suspicions were put to rest after that visit, haha.

Anyway, that was my Sunday and even with the scary Scientology excursion, it was really fun. I wish I had my camera. ๐Ÿ™‚

Anime Expo 2008

AX

Last weekend I attended Anime Expo 2008 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. I have to say, it was a LOT better than last year from my limited exposure. This is my 8th year in a row attending (first time at LA Convention Center), and the location is a much better fit for the size that Anime Expo has grown to, which is around 45,000 people. The past couple of years I have only gone to the Exhibitor Halls, but even just walking through the convention this year I found the mood to be much more pleasant and jovial, where in years past walking through I could sense the frustration and unhappiness of the other attendees, many of whom paid $50 and above to be there all weekend dealing with the disorganization of the staff.

Last year there were lots of lines everywhere I looked, and this year I didn’t see any, even when I showed up Monday morning to the At-Con registration. I heard that the SPJA hired a professional staffing company to train their staff and volunteers this year. If they did, it showed. Everything felt a lot better organized and not so chaotic. Trying to cram 40,000 people into the Long Beach Convention Center last year was a big mistake; I think the SPJA finally realized that AX has outgrown that venue. And since the Shriners have booked up the Anaheim Convention Center for the forseeable future, I have a feeling the LACC may become AX’s permanent home. I thought it was a lot better than the ACC though, there are a lot more vendors in the Convention Center itself for food, etc, which the ACC doesn’t have and there aren’t too many eating facilities within walking distance of the ACC.

Anyway, that’s my opinion of the Convention. ๐Ÿ™‚ Usually I go to the convention to get my hands on random cute things that I probably could find online, but don’t want to pay tax and shipping for. I also go for the manga, usually targeting the “buy 4 get one free” or “$8 manga” offers that many booths have. Normally I avoid DVDs because they are easy to find at my local Fry’s or Best Buy, and the deals usually aren’t that great, but this year I spent most of my money on DVDs. The goods:

Ranma 1/2 DVD seasons 1,3 & 4 (we bought Season 2 at Best Buy recently, they didn’t have season 1)
Azumanga Daioh DVD Complete Series
Fruits Basket manga volumes 19 & 20
KareKano manga volumes 15-21 (which completes the series!! The ending was so touching and precious!)
3 boxes of Pocky (a con staple), 2 chocolate and one coconut flavor for Mike
1 “Jiji” plushie from Kiki’s Delivery Service
1 “Kodama” plushie from Princess Mononoke
1 “Kakashi” neckstrap from Naruto for Mike
1 “Kakashi” cell charm from Naruto for Mike
1 Naruto keychain for Mike
Domo-kun magnet sheet (6 on the sheet!)
1 Zodiac year of the Ox cell charm

I was pretty happy with my goods this year ๐Ÿ™‚ See you there next year!

I know, I’m an old lady.

I went to Target (twice) on Saturday, and among the many other useless purchases I made, I got a puzzle of Claude Monet’s Water Lilies (see the painting here). I told my friend I was addicted to this puzzle, and she replied with, “Oh, my grandma always has a puzzle going! She loves them.”

That made me feel great, haha. I can’t help it! I couldn’t resist a modern art puzzle. And it’s kind of fun. I might get another puzzle after this.

Another Threadless sale!!

Ohhh my goodness! Threadless.com is having ANOTHER $10 saleeeeee. However, this time I will not be participating because I am too poor, lol. This time of year is always rough because I’m running low on reserve cash earned over the summer and winter breaks. With insurance, car payment and gas alone, I already exceed my income, so earning extra dollar over the breaks in really important. ๐Ÿ˜ก

Threadless has tons of really cute and funny shirts, so get over there today and buy some! The sale ends May 8th @ midnight CST, but I wouldn’t wait… I’ve had shirts sell out on me AS I AM CHECKING OUT, which by the way, is so cruel.

If you want to buy me a shirt, I’m a ladies size L… ๐Ÿ˜€

Procrastination.

Don’t want to prepare for my presentations tomorrow and Thursday. Would rather slum around on the internet and read up on celeb gossip instead. And possibly continue cleaning room, which is my favorite procrastinating activity.

Today taxes are due. Did you get yours in? I’m getting almost $400 back this year. And Mike had to pay $500. I know what I’m spending mine on…

  1. Car Registration
  2. Weddings
  3. Las Vegas
  4. AX

Did I mention that my sis wants to go to Las Vegas for her bachelorette party? haha I can’t seem to get away from that place. WE’re staying at the Monte Carlo, it has three pools, sweet! It’s going to be a nightmare there, we’re going Labor Day weekend. SO many people will be there. And it’s going to be fuckin hot.

OK time to work ๐Ÿ˜›