Sunday, April 30, 2006


Tonight, Ulric brought over the DVD of the new King Kong film. I must say, there was more camera time for the humans and dinosaurs than expected for a 3 1/2 hour film that was supposed to be about a giant ape. There was hardly any King Kong at all! The few times in which the mighty ape did show up, I cried like a baby. However, I did not cry as hard as Lucia, the Landlord's daughter. Lucia didn't see the movie, but she didn't want to go to bed, and that is why she cried.

I haven't posted so much as of late. I have had an extended case of the hiccups. As my friend Monkey would say, please send (chocolate covered) bananas.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Dance, Monkeys, Dance

I stole a film-strip from the secret collection of El JoPe Magnifico, also known as the King of Infinite Space. I would link his website for you, but he's very shifty and keeps it moving from place to place as if it were a caravan with bells attached. You don't often hear the bells, of course, because El Magnifico stuffs cotton in the clappers when he travels in order to be clandestine and mysterious. In this caravan (moving from the metaphorical into the literal with nary a seam), El Magnifico keeps a stash of rare, valuable, shocking film-strips. They are authentic, as a simultaneously perky and bored-sounding BEEP signals the change of each frame in the progression of the narrative.

The film-strip you are about to see, Dance, Monkeys, Dance, is disturbing and very, very real. Take note that the slang term for simians, "monkeys" (derogatory when used in any context but in reference to actual monkeys) is integral to the filmstrip as a whole.

And now...

Dance, Monkeys, Dance

Thursday, April 20, 2006


My niece, Charlotte, has been forcing me to listen to Gorillaz. She is a teenager, and as teenagers are wont, plays her favorite albums repeatedly. I was a bit confused initially, as it appeared that there weren't actually any gorillas in the band. Talk about false advertising! However, my initial disappointment over the lack of species gorilla gorilla gorilla was assuaged when I found out that the band members were not only fictitious but animated as well. Also, the band members are quite rude! Charlotte is penpals with Noodle, the guitarist for the band, and says that, contrary to the press reports, Noodle is fluent in several languages. Sometimes Charlotte and Noodle meet up for shopping trips when they're on the same continent, but mostly, Noodle's touring and recording schedules prohibit having much free time.

Here are some of Charlotte's favorite Gorillaz videos:


Dare (Interview with Noodle has a link to the video at the bottom of the article)

El MaƱana

Feel Good, Inc.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Chili-Pepper Apron

Before I go any further, let me clear up a couple of rumors:

1) Ulric is not the author of this blog. Frankly, I resent the implications. I can write my own blog. I do all the typing myself, and sometimes even type with my feet when my finger-pads get sore. If you really must know, my Landlady gives me some suggestions about ideas for my blog from time to time and even lends me her laptop on occasion. I usually taunt her with raspberries (but sometimes I throw over-ripe loquats). Ulric does have an astute memory, though, and it is he who reminds me of my many exploits in film, art, cookery and music.

2)I am a 451 (sometimes 453) lb gorilla. Why my Landlord thinks he can pick me up is beyond me. I am over twice his size, for pete’s sake.

There. I'm glad that everything's cleared up. I feel better. Don't you? Onto business...

Some of you may remember the fiasco involving the loss of my chili-pepper apron. When I threw it on the floor of the Green Dragon Inn, the proprietor picked it up and took it for his very own. I raged, threatened, bribed and cajoled, but with no success. I had the last laugh, though. I called the Health Department to inspect the establishment.

Ho ho.

Tonight, my Landlady made me a new chili-pepper apron. It is even better-looking than the old one, though I have to say that her embroidery is a bit wobbly. Oh well, it's better than my embroidery would be. I have trouble holding the needle, as it's usually so small and gets stuck in my finger-pads.

Monday, April 10, 2006


Mr Pudding threatened to send the International Blog Police to my street if I didn’t post. Normally, I would scoff at such a threat, but you may recall the last time I ended up in Blogjail. It wasn’t fun. I had my own cell, but the guards tormented me with repeated viewings of Battlestar Galactica 1980 and the Star Wars Christmas Special. If Ulric hadn’t pulled some strings to get me out of Blogjail, my brain would be green-cheese by now.

This past weekend, I went skydiving with Ulric in Snohomish. For many years, Ulric had wanted to skydive, but every time he planned an excursion, all of his friends who claimed they would go with him backed out at the last moment. “Enough!” “Ulric said, “I’ll do it by myself then.”

“I’ll go with you,” I said.

“No, no,” Ulric said. “It’s too rainy in Snohomish. What if you get your fur wet?”

“No matter,” I said. “No matter. After all, we’ll be tandem skydiving, so if the field is wet, I’ll just land on top of my skydive instructor.”

Ulric rallied, and off we went. We plunked down our money (though I paid in Bradley Enterprises tee-shirts) and the training began. There was one glitch in the whole plan: due to the weight limits, Ulric could have a skydive instructor with him, but I had to jump solo. At 451 lbs (32.21 stone), no one wanted me landing on top of the skydive instructor or anyone else.

As we flew up into the clouds, the winds buffeted the sides of our little plane. “We might have a weight issue,” Ulric’s skydive instructor said nervously, casting surreptitious looks at me. “I think Brad the Gorilla should jump first.”

“No, no,” I said. “Ulric must jump first.”

This detail was important. Ulric told me that if he got scared at the last moment, I had to be the one to push him out of the plane. As it turned out, Ulric was wise to insist upon this matter. The winds were so strong that Ulric couldn’t even get his foot onto the platform to jump. With a heave-ho, out they went and sailed into free fall.

Then, the surly voice of the cameraman said, “Brad, you’re up next.”

“Hem, hem, I think I need to eat a banana first to settle my stomach,” I replied. Maybe a little scotch and—wait, wait, what are you doing? You can’t push me out! Who is flying the plane? Wait, I change my mind, I--- aieeeeeee!”

Over I went, and after a few moments, the cameraman jumped after me.

What a glorious fall! For a moment, I thought the parachute wasn’t going to open. “That’s it, old friend,” I said to myself. “You’re a goner.” But then, the parachute opened and I felt as if I were flying like the fabled gorilla-bird of antiquity.

The skydive itself was exhilarating. However, the motion sickness from all the twisting and turning was enough to make Ulric green around the gills. Even my fur had a greenish tinge. Both Ulric and I managed to keep our guts intact, however, and we settled our stomachs with plenty of ginger beer. Ulric got a DVD of the event, but unfortunately, the footage of my jump got a bit scrambled. All that came of it was the one motion-capture shot you see here:

Update: by overwhelming popular request, here are some framable cards of my skydiving experience.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Learning Experiences from Movies and TV

Things I learned from watching movies.

More things I learned from watching movies.

Even more things I learned from watching movies.

Still more things I learned from watching movies.

Finally, things I learned while watching the television program Lost on a small computer screen next to my Landlord and Landlady:

1) If someone asks you about a secret from your life before you got stranded on the island, you can avoid answering by looking wistful, narrowing your eyes, and cueing mysterious music. If you can arrange for a fade to a commercial (or even better, a rolling of the credits), you're in the clear.

2) If someone offers to tell you a secret from his or her life before s/he got stranded on the island, say, "No, it's not important" only if there are three minutes left to the rolling of the credits. Otherwise, you can say, "Sure, go ahead," but expect that the person will change his or her mind about revealing the secret. (See #1).

3) If you get captured by mysterious villians on the island and actually escape from them, you must have amnesia by the time you return to the camp. In no way are you to find out anything crucial to the castaways' survival on the island. If you break this rule and find out something crucial to the castaways' survival on the island, you will probably lose a lot of blood.

4) One person on the island always has an inexhaustable supply of sunscreen, pillaged from the wreckage of the fuselage. This person also has lots of personal razors and shaving cream. When you need something from this person, it's important to demand it, often accompanied by threats. Saying "please" and "thank you" is gratuitious and unnecessary.

5) If you are ten years old, always go into the jungle unaccompanied, preferably without telling anyone. If you must bring your dog, make sure you drop its leash at a crucial moment. It doesn't matter that there are dangerous beasts in the jungle and you've been warned to stay close to camp. You've had a tough childhood, and no one is the boss of you.