Sunday, March 22, 2009

Announcement Doodles

And now for a new segment we like to call "Announcement Doodles". I've got a mind deficiency, at least I think it is, where when there is one thing that needs my attention, I have a hard time focusing on it unless there is something else competing for that attention. So at church when I as a nice little mormon boy need to be paying attention to the talks, I draw. I've decided that it might be fun to display the drawings on my blog. So here is drawing one.

for the younger kids in the audience it's a scene from the lourne michaels produced feature length film, "the coneheads"

Monday, March 16, 2009

Got to love black youth

this would be a bannekid, but i don't know if they could figure that one out on their own.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

James update

Well today James had his acting debut premiere in my video art class as the farm mouse who moved to Kalamazoo. It got raive reviews and apparently it all went to the mouse's head. James figured out how to escape from his cage. I found him when I got home munchin on a pile of edamame pods. Bad mouse! Bad bad mouse!! Luckily he is too scared to jump off of our octagonal coffee table or else he might have pulled off the "mouse-shank redemption" of a life time.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Mix and Pokemon/Ben-10

The other night at work I was asked by a kid if I could let him pick up something from his house as we dropped off his little sister on the bus run and then go back to banneker. I reluctantly did so. The boy's name is Stewart and Will Rose says he looks like a character from duckman. I think Ajax is who he's talking about but we were both a little foggy on what Ajax really looked like since we were both kids when that show was popular.

So Stewart comes out with a box that once held printer paper with a drawing taped to the cover. We get back to the banneker center and he says, "Torlando will you play my game that I made up with me?" I said, "of course!" only as a good after school facilitator should. And we proceeded to play the second most weird game I've ever played in my life. The first place belonging to a Ouija board game I played in the eight grade with my friend Adam when we met a 19th century lady spirit from the Orient that told us the key to life was happiness. Stewart's game was a close second though, no, I am officially declaring Stewart's game, Mix and Pokemon/Ben-10 as the weirdest game I've ever played.

Here's how to play: Each player selects which character he/she wants to be. You can be the evil villain Mix, who is a gangster with a blue hat, a gun in one hand and an axe in the other and a fancy "S" on his shirt. (You know, the kind every fourth grader learned how to draw with the six vertical lines connected by diagonal lines) Your other option is Ben-10. Then you select which weapons you want to use and how many of each you want. Stewart then draws them on a stickie note. He asked me first so I said, I'll be Mix and I want a Gun with 100 rounds, I want an axe, and I want ten hand grenades. Then it was his turn. He chose Ben-10 and wanted 100 gnome warps, a gnome warp escape grappling hook and three pokemon. I said "what's a gnome warp?" He said,
"a portal that when you drop in it, you can't get out and you'll be stuck forever." I replied, "how can you get out?" He said, "with the escape grappling hook." And so I bought one of those, and added to my purchase the "perpetual prison" (That was my idea). Then he drew on my stickie note a prison that was built one thousand feet in the air. I said, "perfect, I'll take 100 of them." Then he got a bazooka to blow his self out and a flying alien to get safely down.
There are three dice to role, this determines how many spaces you move, once you've landed on a space you do what it says and then draw a card to see how many more spaces you move. He landed on the battle space that meant we had go to battle. He threw me in the gnome warp, I grappling hooked out of there and shot him three times. He sook his pokemon on me and then I hit him with five grenades and he died and had to go back to start. At banneker we don't let the kids win, its sort of our thing. Then I landed on "buy a car" and because I had 1000 gold pieces saved up I bought a blue mustang hot wheel. And that replaced the eraser head that was my token. It was a grueling match, many battles and blood loss, I got married, bought more cars, I even got some pokemon of my own, including Raichu, some weird Picachu morph. In the end I bought all of Stuarts cars and caused him to go bankrupt. It would have been a done deal but the other staff members called for "snack time" and we ran down to eat our dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets.

The end.

coming soon, pictures commemorating this epically weird game!

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Much to my roommates' future surprise and potential discomfort, on saturday, I bought a pet mouse. I know what you are thinking, "aren't you Torlando Hakes, Hater of all animals and fearer of pet shops?" Yes, yes I am the same man. But allow me to explain.

Last thursday I completed a project and had the critique, it all went well. As the class period was coming to a close I asked my teacher what the next assignment would be, to which he replied that it was open ended. I found myself clueless as to what to do next. Most of my projects had just fallen together or I had the idea a couple of months in advanced. Well I was puzzled, what new art project could I possibly conjure up now? I thought. Then I remembered a children's story my mom came up with and asked me to illustrate and I thought, what if I did a video project along those lines and since the story involves a mouse, what if I had a real mouse.
The presented a problem. One, I don't want any pet, I hate pets, right? Two getting a mouse would mean that I would have to go to a pet store. "NO!!" I exclaimed, "Not a pet shop!" When I was in middle school I developed an intense fear of pet shops. My friend angelo kim and his sister "and-law" took me to a small pet shop in my home town of Kalamazoo. The owner of the place thought it would be fitting to have various reptiles and birds out of their cage and lounging around the store. I became frightened that these critters were going to stage an attack opening the rat and other rodent cages letting them run amok in the store crawling up my pant legs and birds flying in my hair flapping their wings ferociously onto my forehead. I had to get out of there.
This experience and others led me to shun pet stores from my life.
So mustering up as much vim and vigor as I could I entered the conveniently located petco and bought my mouse. Nobody in the store was particularly helpful which prolonged the experience, leaving me to search for mouse necessities on my own. I found a ball, and a watering apparatus and bedding. I found the cramped quarters of the mouse, rat and gerbil den, gross. And I eventually found James. My mouse.
I first thought to myself that as soon as I was done with the project that I would just let him go into the wild, but then I watched doctor dolittle 2 and thought maybe thats not such a good idea. Then I thought perhaps I could give him to my sister for her thirteenth birthday, then I realized she's not a six year old. Hmmm, Banneker maybe? I don't know if that'll fly.
When I took James home and prepared his cage, I had a little conversation with him while he was in his ball. He's easy to talk to, and a good listener. Sometimes I wish people had such big ears so they could listen like James.
There is also a lot in a name. Calling him James is the best decision I'm made in recent history. My first pet ever was a rodent. It was a guinea pig named Jesse. At that time, Jessica was my favorite name, and my family has a thing with names ending with the long "e" sound. For example my mom and aunts, tammy tracy and terri. And when I was a kid, Tory. Now-o-days my favorite name is James, a name I used to not like because its hard to make it possessive or plural, but now I just love that name.
So yeah, I've got a pet mouse, I guess this only adds to my life long feud with cats.