So I finally got around to coloring this one. I like the general look of how it came out, but I was a bit rushed when making it, so I didn't take as much time to finesse it and smooth out the rough edges as I could have. Oh well, I still think it came out pretty cool. Let me know what you think!
So I have been watching a TON of Zatôichi movies recently - in case you don't know, they are a series of Japanese movies about a blind masseuse that is also a legendary swordsman -- and part way through the sixth movie of the series, this drawing was burning a hole in my head, so I had to sketch it out (missing most of the movie along the way). I'm kinda surprised how fast this one came together. I really had this drawing pretty strongly in my head.
Critiques, comments and stuff welcome!
BTW, I highly recommend the movies! They are repetitive as heck, but a ton of fun; the
I recently went to the Fox Theater in Oakland and watched an awesome Modest Mouse concert. The opening bands were Mimicking Birds (they were super mellow) and Japanese Motors (as far as I could tell, they weren't Japanese at all, hehe). Anyway, it was great. Check out the photo gallery:
Modest Mouse at the Fox Theater on PhotoPeach
If that's not working you can check out my Picasaweb album here.
I'm at work, so I'll keep this short, but watching the Inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States stirred a lot of feelings. There were some trip ups (thanks Chief Justice!), but overall it was something else. His speech didn't have quite the sweeping grandeur of some of his others (there was a touch of it, though), but largely, it was somber and serious, while still inspiring us for the days and years ahead.
President Obama has a classy, intelligent manner that constantly shows in how he carries himself. He represents the idea that maybe, just maybe, people of various backgrounds and diverse cultures can successfully live together, work together, grow together. Maybe we can pick capable leaders purely on their merits and not on the color of their skin. His mere presence in the Oval Office (not to mention his uncanny ability to inspire and motivate) is a powerful statement that we as a people have made to the world. I'm glad to have been alive for this moment.
BTW, the Benediction was also very good. The last sentence was
So I'm back in the US and I have some thoughts on Nigeria. Before I start, let me go over the final days of the trip. Once I was back in Abuja, we went to a Chinese food restaurant that was playing country western music. That was quite odd. The food was really good, though.
After getting back to London, the 4 of us (me, my mom, Uchenna and his gf) went to this really nice restaurant in the Mayfair area to celebrate the New Year. We didn't see the fireworks, but it was alright. We've seen fireworks in so many places (most impressively in Sydney), that I'm ok with not having seen them.
Ok, so about Nigeria. I was talking about this with Uchenna, and he has a very interesting theory about Nigerians in general and the problems they have in their country. It's very interesting and I can see where he gets it from. In short, he thinks that they hold themselves in too high a regard and they can't really extend their thinking to include big picture items like working for the good of the country or things like that. These are of course
Oh my god. I’m back in Abuja, and all I’m going to say is that I’m glad to be back in a modern city. It’s still kind of ridiculous that the satellite TV in the village was better, but everything else is better (such as power being on being more the rule than the exception as it was in the village). I’ve been talking with the family (or more, listening to them talk), and I’ve got some wrap up thoughts on Nigeria, but I have to form them and I’ll get back to it in a later entry. Also, I should wait till the Nigeria part is over before that, haha.
Well, I’m going to be heading back to Abuja tomorrow. Church was as long as I expected, but not as boring as I expected. There was a fundraising event halfway through (during the time set aside for the Homily, if you know Catholic tradition) that was pretty interesting. Both of my parents donated quite a bit of money to the Church. My dad had me and my bro go up and “donate” money, too, but he’s going to actually donate it.
After that we came home for a bit and ate lunch, and I took a nap, after which, we went to a Bazaar, which was another donation event for the church – a charity auction, actually. It was pretty cool at first. Then boring. Then cool again, when I walked around and talked with my brother and cousin (technically, first cousin, once removed). Then boring again. I will say, though, that the image of my dad as the rich dude around town was very striking. He was seriously like the Don Corleone (sp?) of the town (without the illegal activities, hehe). There are also a couple of other big, famous families around town. I have a
Church, church and more church. I went to church the day before yesterday for Christmas (Merry Christmas, btw!) and went around to visit some family (including seeing Josephine, one of my favorite cousins over here, the other being her twin, Ngozi). I went back to church yesterday and will probably go again on Sunday. *SIGH*A very religious people, the Nigerians, hehe.
So what else happened? Oh yes, there was a festival the day before yesterday that I went to went the family. Well, “danced down the street to with a troupe of drummers, family and friends” is more accurate. It was a big town-wide thing, but among the activities, my dad was given yet another chieftaincy title. So apparently, I’m a prince of some sort? Weird. After that (which went on for quite a while), there was a Gala Night. It was supposed to be like a party for young people. There was a live band which was good in parts and super boring in other parts. My bro and I went out with 3 of my cousins. It was pretty good overall.
This morning, I was woken up by the sound of a rooster crowing and goats bleating. Yeah, countryside.
So yeah, my dad has a dog. His name is Prince and he’s very unruly. Well, he’s still young and wants to play all the time, even when he’s covered in dirt and mud. He ruined 2 shirts of mine in about a 30 minute span. I like him and all, but stupid dog.
Oh, right. The flight out here was pretty interesting. I should be used to it from the couple times that I’ve done it, but it’s still pretty crazy to me. The terminal building was very manual. Signs hanging from the ceiling showed the flights. There were no screens or LEDs or anything like that. I guess I just thinking of airports as requiring a minimum amount of technology in them, but when there are only maybe a handful of flights in and out any given day, I guess it works. Needless to say, there aren’t any gates so to speak, only a door out to the field and the mobile stairs they put out next to the planes. Also, the baggage claim in Enugu (the airport that we
So I did some calculating, and I haven’t been here in the village in a whole decade! I was last here in 1998 for my dad’s knighting or chieftaincy ceremony or something. Yeah, I was in high school then. Crazy. Anyway, I saw some relatives and friends of the family today. There will be much more of that to come in the next few days.
So my dad is pretty well off, but I don’t think that I really understood the scope of that. Before coming out to Obeledu, we went to go see all the properties that he owns, and I realized just how crazy well off he is. He owns like a dozen houses, apartment buildings and plots of land. He was talking about the cost of building them and of renovating them, and how much he would be selling them for and he was throwing around numbers like millions of Naira this, millions of Naira that (125 Naira = $1). @_@.
In any case, back to Obeledu. Being around here, I’m really struck – again – by how contradictory (or at least, counterintuitive) this country is. Power isn’t on 24/7 anywhere in the