Shaggy Fur Pelt, Part Two.

Dear Cyber-Friends,

Remember yesterday, when I said I’d get before and after pictures when I cut my hair? Well, consider yesterday’s after picture as today’s before picture, because I forgot. It happens…

Anyway, here’s my new haircut!

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Basically I trimmed the back, nearly shaved the sides, and thinned the top.This has kind of become my usual haircut; it’s a nice compromise where I have the freedom/sensitivity of shaved on the sides, yet enough to play with on the top/front, and the back can be ignored. That pretty much takes care of all my needs, hair-wise.

The best part was that the comb-and-razor combo had the side benefit getting all the loose/cut hair out of the still-attached hair right away. When I showered off afterwards, there was no need to the usual five (or so) passes of scrubbing to get all the little bits of loose hair out, because they were already gone!

Next up, I’ll be looking into dyeing my hair again. It’s been awhile, so clearly I’m overdue. I’m thinking there will be strawberry blonde highlights involved. Fun fact: I was born with strawberry blonde hair, which darkened into what you see now.

Love,

GeGi.

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Shaggy Fur Pelt On My Head In Summer.

Dear Cyber-Friends,

Living in the tropics. Having thick fast-growing hair. Preferring short styles. Getting overheated easily. Being really grumpy whenever overheated. Not having much money. Enjoying DIY.

Why am I listing all these things?

Well, for a start, they are all true about me.

Together, they mean I need an inexpensive way to frequently trim my hair.

I used to just get those buzzer-clipper things that you plug in and use to shave all the hair off. But I got bored with that because I like having personality to my hair, a style I can play with or not as I choose. My hair is a reflection of my mood and identity; it’s one of the ways I can reinvent myself when I need a change. At the same time, if I don’t keep it short, it tries to eat my soul and take over my life. Seriously, just ask my best friend — she’ll vouch.

Basically, I want SOME hair, just not a lot of it. And I want it to look good.

I started using scissors on myself; but with the kind of short punk hairstyles I like, it was time consuming and annoying. I could never get it just how I wanted it.

I did some research and discovered that a razor would give me the result I was looking for.

I started looking into the razor-comb things as a possible solution. It seemed like a good fit: it would take less time than scissors, and give more texture and layers than the buzzers. It also seemed be relatively easy to do on myself.

I figured I’d get a cheap version that allowed for replaceable razor blades, since I lot of tips and complaints had to do with needing to use a sharp blade. But it still came to about $10 for the comb and replacement blades online, and I wanted to be sure I’d like the result before I spent the money.

Then I had a very simple and brilliant idea, based on items I ALREADY had:

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I took a plastic comb, a single-edged razor blade, and masking tape, and made the obvious combination:

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Laying the blade along the teeth of the comb and taking a bit of the tape to hold it all in place creates a similar effect as the cheap razor-combs. Not quite though, because the blade is exposed on one side, so you have to be a little more careful.

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Ta-da! I can adjust the length of the teeth guarding the blade by repositioning the razor on the comb, and I can take the whole thing apart to wash it when I’m done.

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I gave it a test, and it works fine for what I wanted. The cut hair gets a little stuck between the comb and the razor, but that’s not an issue at all to pull out as I work it.

I didn’t take a “before” picture because I didn’t think about turning this into a post until I saw how well it worked, which meant I was already done. But here’s what my hair looks like “after”:

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Basically, just imagine all the hair being about the length and shagginess of the stuff up top now. The layered trimming of the lower back part was done with this contraption in about ten minutes, including sweeping the floor after. Maybe less time. Oh, and that little patch at the nape that looks shaved? It isn’t, that’s just how my hair grows naturally.

I’ll get around to experimenting more with length and style at a later date (and remember to take pictures before AND after, too!). But for now, I’ve saved $10, and I know that I can quickly and easily keep my hair thinned and trimmed enough to not feel like a shaggy fur pelt on my head in the summer. And that is always a win.

Love,

GeGi.

Fictional Therapist Fail.

Dear Cyber-Friends,

I just finished watching a surreal strange Swedish film call Kill Your Darlings (2006).

It follows three main storylines:

The celebrity therapist and hangers-on, who can’t seem to stand up for himself or make his 14 year old daughter a priority.

The Swedish writer/photographer in L.A. who has an idea but no plot, with a woman who convinces him to take a road trip and turns out to be an insane and dangerous former patient of the therapist.

The somewhat shady and armed man who is hired to drive two suicidal non-celebrity patients to Las Vegas to meet with the therapist who had been treating them.

Though the movie beings and ends with the writer, though the therapist was the comment element, by far my favorite storyline was the last.

The first was kind of sleazy and sad, overdone but realistic. The second was uncomfortable and a little horrifying — as it should be — and all the more so when remembered that it had been inspired by something that had actually happened to the writer/director of the movie. But the third storyline was brilliant. It was understated and surreal and hilarious in subtle twisted way, and brought the whole movie a sense of heart and growth.

Julie Benz, Fares Fares, and Alexander Skarsgard.

There are so many moments in this film that would never have existed if it had been a “Hollywood” movie. This is not a loud, in-your-face, over the top kind of movie. The cringe-worthy moments are raw and honest. The funny moments are raw and honest, too. There’s a stripped-down feel to the whole thing. It doesn’t play out in a predictable way. The storytellers don’t give you every exposition and backstory; they show you people and situations, and allow you to fill those details yourself.

Kill Your Darlings (2006) is certainly not going to be for everyone. But if you are open to the weirdness and charm of a slightly disturbing tale, I suggest you should give it a chance.

Love,

Gegi.

I’m the Green Fairy! (No, not actually.)

Dear Cyber-Friends,

There are a few things I don’t feel I can do tutorials for. They are things that I might like the results of, but am unskilled enough at technique that the results come about by accident and happy chance. Oil painting is one of those things. Makeup is another.

However, I will still gladly share those end results that I like, and perhaps a photo or two of the steps along the way. I figure if nothing else, they are pretty to look at, and hopefully seeing what I stumble onto might inspire a few of you to get creative on your own!

That said, here is today’s fantasy fairy makeup.

No make-up:

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…halfway through:

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And the finished result!

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Love,

Gegi.

Tru Calling.

Dear Cyber-Friends,

While I originally planned on my Review Day post to be about movies, I decided it would be more fun to make it a review of anything — whatever I happen to be into at the moment. So to kick things off with this topic, I’m going to review a TV show I just finished watching:

Tru Calling is a decade-old Fox Network series which was canceled shortly into the second season (as happens to pretty much half-to-all their good shows). I had never known about it back when it aired, and only heard of it when it was mentioned in a list of shows that were ended before their time.

The Hero of the show is Tru Davies, played by Eliza Dushku. Tru as a character is strong, stubborn, and extremely compassionate. She commits herself to her calling of helping people with admirable passion, if not much discretion.

While she might have benefited from some out-of-the-box thinking a few times, she approaches each problem and challenge with a head-on determination that quite often — though not always — wins the day eventually.

In the pilot episode, Tru graduates college and is planning on going on to medical school. To that end, she has lined up an internship, but it falls through and she winds up accepting a position as a city morgue attendant instead — because it will still look good on her application.

However, the proximity to dead bodies reveals that Tru unknowingly has the ability to hear the dead ask her for help, which “restarts” the day, giving her an opportunity to find and help the person who is going to die.

Morbid and potentially repetitive as the premise sounds, the writers do a great job of keeping each episode unique, fresh, and interesting — not an easy task, I’m sure. The first episode was fun, and got me hooked just enough to try the second. I was surprised and pleased to discover in the second episode that the show didn’t seem to be going to follow a formula or pattern, which gave me the encouragement to keep watching.

I’m glad I did; the writers do a good job of blending both story and character driven elements, and the “restarts” didn’t feel dragging or repetitive. They did, however, feel like they could be used to make a fun drinking game, if one felt so inclined.

After reading one of the writers’ Livejournal entries (Spoilers, sweetie, so don’t read if you haven’t watched yet.) about the plans for the second season and the mythology behind the stories, I’m really disappointment Fox Network canceled before that could all play out. They were heading in some very awesome-sounding directions, and I was fully invested in going there.

That said, despite loose ends the show does wrap up in a good place. It’s open-ended, but still a satisfying chapter in which to close the book (as it were). Don’t let the six-out-of-thirteen-with-no-warning episodes of the second season scare you off — Tru Calling is still worth watching as is.

If you have any recommendations or requests for future Review Days, leave a comment below.

Love,

GeGi.

Talking ’bout stuff.

Dear Cyber-Friends,

As hoped, I’m getting two posts up in one week! Go me!

Starting next week, or possibly later today or tomorrow, depending on how butchering the pig goes (I mean that literally, in case you were wondering), I’ll be starting to post on a semi-regular schedule. The plan so far is:

* A Baking/cooking day, where I share new and favorite recipes and have photos as I make whatever it is I’ll be making;

* A Movie review day, which is a self-explanatory topic;

* A Creative day where I show whatever projects I’ve been up to, which could be oil painting, sketches, crafting, clothes modification, DIY hair/skin care, really cool make-up…you get the idea;

*Random other posts as interesting things come up that I want to share or talk about.

Eventually I’ll go on another trip this year, too, if things work out, and then some or all of the schedule will get replaced with another Trip Log series. But until then, this should help keep the blog active and interesting! Of course, all this is subject to tweaking and changing as needed… This blog is meant to be fun, so I’ll do whatever I need to in order to keep it that way.

In the meantime, here is a photo of a pizza my Mum and I made the other night. It was even more delicious than it looks, and it looks pretty tasty if I do say so myself:

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The crust is made from scratch, the sauce is tomato paste with herbs and spices, the cheese Muenster, and the toppings are salami, onions, olives, garlic, green peppers, and mushrooms. YUM!

(No, this is not a recipe post, just gloating about my pizza!)

Talk to you soon.

Love,

Gegi.