professor butts

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

So hey I did a thing.

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In case it isn’t plainly obvious, I filled a collage frame with pictures of my dogs in various stages of bathroom-related activities: peeing, pooping, eating poop

(Peedee I’m looking at you! Sadly, I have more than enough pictures of Peedee eating feces to fill one of those ginormous, wall-shaped collage frames. Possibly his poo habit is why he’s nearly toothless, though the vet will neither confirm nor deny this theory.),

and in Ralphie’s case, just plain strutting his butt (it’s so cute!). And then I hung it in the bathroom. Genius, right? Don’t all go copying me at once. By which I mean do, because it’s awesome and you will be the talk of your neighborhood. (Though not necessarily in a good way, but who cares? You’re a rebel and a trendsetter, you do what you want.)

The hardest part was finding a frame; the ones at the craft stores tend to be big and pricey, so I opted for a mid-sized cheapo plastic one and then gussied it up with some metallic spray paint. I was actually going for a weathered, two-tone look, with some of the original black peaking through, but the paint I chose would have none of that. If I were a craftier type, I probably would have picked something more suitable for the task. Oh well. I don’t love it, but the color’s not bad, it matches the walls, and I can always change it later.

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I hung it right over the toilet (classy!), and on the wall adjacent I put up this adorable plaque my mom gave me on my last trip to New York (which was much, much too long ago, I might add). It used to hang next to the toilet in our upstairs bathroom, and as a wee little one I sometimes spent hours (tmi!) staring at it. I didn’t understand the significance of the prunes until I was well into my teens; when I was younger, I thought it was a reference to poo-shaped items: “think about pushing out a prune.” True story.

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Here are the photos that made the cut; the outtakes are over on flickr. (There’s an album! OF COURSE there’s an album.) As you can see, Peedee’s overrepresented, and Jayne and Finnick are nowhere to be found. They hate having their pictures taken enough without being chased down while dropping a dookie.

On that note.

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Shiny Happy Spaghetti (It’s FSMas decorating time!)

Monday, December 24th, 2012

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For several years now I’ve been meaning to do a “31 Days of FSMas” series, with tips and tutorials for giving your holiday festivities a flying spaghetti monster flair. (Two words: pasta and pirates!) Between Vegan MoFo and real life holiday chores, I always run out of time. Sigh. Maybe next year? (Famous last words.)

Instead of a series, a big old roundup featuring pictures of this year’s decorations. I didn’t go all out with a theme like last year, when I made all the holiday tree ornaments by hand (to match Kaylee and Jayne’s Firefly-inspired costumes) – but luckily I had enough existing decorations to deck the house in swag just the same. (…is the understatement of the year.) Lots of sparkle, but not much organization. Just glitter. EVERYWHERE.

So here are my principles of FSMas decorating, in no particular order:

 

1. You can never have too many flying spaghetti monsters.

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"Ha HA! Mine is an evil laugh!" (i.e., the shiny-yet-sacrilegious CriFSMas finery post)

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

This year I’d really hoped to do a “31 Days of CriFSMas” series. There was to be tutorials for making ornaments by hand, decorating tips, diy greeting card ideas, menu suggestions – even a list of festive viewing options. (Actually, I’ve planned on doing this for several years now, but veganmofo always leaves me exhausted and burnt out.) This year seemed an especially opportune time, seeing as I’ve been planning it since July and created many of the ornaments on the tree from scratch. But since time cannot be rewritten – that is, unless you are a Timelord or happen to know one – I’ll just have to cram it all into one ginormous megapost. Sound good?

The Pirate Tree

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What better place to start than the tree? Whereas in years past I’ve gone heavy on the pasta-themed ornaments, this year I decided to do a full-on pirate theme – with a special focus on Firefly. Space pirates are totally relevant when you’re a Pastafarian, yo! Also when you’re the guardian of two dogs who are named after characters on the show! I’ve been dying to do some holiday cosplay with Kaylee and Jayne ever since we adopted them five years ago, but this year I actually took the initiative and did it! (Hence the early planning.) I’ll post photos of the dogs later this week, but suffice to say that their costumes directly influenced the look of the tree. Since I’ve never done a pirate tree before, almost all of the ornaments and decorations are new this season.

The decorations are mix of re-purposed items (pirate toys from the Dollar Store; some cool and inexpensive pirate and nautical wood party favors from Jo-Anne Fabric; glass bottles that look as though they might hold messages from castaways, also from J-Anne Fabric; “gold” skull & crossbones metal charms found on eBay), Firefly merch (ID badges for Kaylee Frye and Jayne Cobb; a Serenity keychain), and diy ornaments made by gluing pirate stickers and photos onto bottle caps and card stock.

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It’s this last group that I wanted to make a tutorial for but really, it’s all very simple. Throughout the summer I saved up whatever bottle caps and lids I could (the flatter, the better) and when I had a pretty good collection going, I laid them all out on the floor of the barn (on top of a drop cloth, natch) and spray-painted them black. Since you’re likely to have collected lids made of variety of materials – plastic and metal, mostly – make sure you buy a spray paint that’s suitable for each.

Then hit the internets and gather up as many pirate-y pictures as you can: google Firefly/Serenity (the art produced by this fandom is both plentiful and delightful!), Pirates of the Caribbean, pirate Amy Pond, women pirates (girl power!), etc. (Though that last search term turns up some rather depressing results. To cut down on the number of sexy pirates, search for historical woman pirates. You won’t get many results, but the hits you do get will be awesome!) Next, resize ’em so that the portions of the photos that you’d like to use are similar in size to your caps and lids, then copy and paste them onto 4×6, 5×7, and/or 8×10 canvases (depending on the size, you’ll be able to fit between one and five images on each), and either print them up at home or order them online at Sam’s Club or similar.

The hardest part is cutting the images to fit snugly inside the lids. Cutting a circle freehand is pretty much impossible, as I quickly learned. Instead, try to find a circular item – a cup or bottle, for example, or even another, slightly smaller lid – and use it to trace a circle on the image. Though still difficult, the guide will help you to cut a much rounder circle. (Just go slowly!) When done, simply glue the photo into the lid. (A heavy-duty, acid-free glue stick works well for this.)

If you can find circular stickers – I happened to have some 1.5″ round skull & crossbones stickers left over from last year – these are a nice option too. While they don’t offer a whole lot of variety, they do come pre-cut. Score!

For hanging, you can either glue a jump ring (used in jewelry making and available at craft stores) to the back of the lid or, if it’s made of plastic and thick enough, drill a small hole into the “lip” of the lid. Either way, string some curling ribbon or a pipe cleaner through the ring or hole to make a loop that can then be used to hang the ornament from the tree. (Curling ribbon is much easier to work with, imho.) We stuck with black to match the tree’s color scheme (namely, black and gold).

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dolphin nom!

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: googly eyes make everything awesomer. Everything.*

* Which begs the obvious question: why didn’t I think to glue a googly eye on Ralphie’s sewn-up eye socket for our criFSMas card photo shoot? Ah well, there’s always next year.

your annual criFSMas update

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Even though I rarely blog here anymore – V for Vegan is my main space now – I’d planned on posting a few more FSMas tutorials in the days leading up to December 25th. Alas, exhaustion and burnout from veganmofo iv, coupled with the foolhardy decision to make many of my gifts by hand this year, have pretty much blown that plan out of the water. (Oh, the boiling, pasta-filled water. FSMas NOM!)

But seeing as I’ve already taken and uploaded a number of photos, it’d be a shame not to at least throw up a photo essay. So here’s a sampling of this year’s decorations. You can view the entire set on Flickr, along with those from years past. The dogs’ annual criFSMas humiliation is forthcoming – they deserve their own post, dontchathink?

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The “pirate altar” in our front window features a mix of relevant books, framed flying spaghetti monster photos, pirate accessories, pasta decor, gold tinsel and doubloons, and sparkly flying spaghetti monsters.
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A closer look at book collection #1, which consists of vegan/vegetarian/Italian cookbooks (including Cathe Olson’s Lick It!, which I snagged in a veganmofo contest) and – of course – a copy of The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
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Step Inside My Noodle House (Take 1)

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

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Last year, when I initially conceived of FSMas, one of the first diy craft ideas to pop into my head was that of building a Noodle House. (Think “gingerbread house,” but with uncooked pasta instead of cookies and icing…and not at all edible, natch.)

I finally found some time this month to experiment with my first noodle house. Even though it turned out to be a bit of a flop – I spent a good half hour yesterday dismantling what I’d made, so I could at least recycle the cardboard frame – I’m going to blog the process anyway, share what worked and what didn’t, and hopefully hammer out some new ideas for the 2009 holiday season.

OK, well, where to begin? I started with two smallish-medium square cardboard boxes. The larger box, the dimensions of which were slightly longer/wider than the length of a lasagna noodle, formed the base of the house. I taped the top and bottom closed so that all the surfaces were level.

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A monster for every occasion.

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

I’ve been trying to take a bit of a break from the internets lately – too many kerfluffles to suffer, I say! – so this week I’ve kept myself occupied with two of my favorite things: FSMas crafts and Lost. On Monday, I churned out a Duggar family’s worth of Flying Spaghetti Monsters – a bunch of festive holiday ones, mostly, but I also experimented with some other colors and holiday themes. Since I didn’t elaborate much on this in Sunday’s tutorial, I thought I might share some family snapshots to give y’all a better idea of how you might diversify your brood of FSMs.

First, those festive FSMs.

You can make a larger monster by twining two (or more) pipe cleaners together before assembling the monster. Or, you can birth a baby by cutting the pipe cleaners in half first. Here’s a “giant” monster I made, along with a wee little FSM:

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It’s a little hard to see in that photo, but the giant FSM’s noodles are super-long and, well, kind of undulating and hypnotic:

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I also gave her a set of extra-large googly eyes, and used faux cranberries for the soy balls; the cushy pom poms were just too small for this BBW.

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from Pipe Cleaners and Pom Poms to Noodles and (Soy) Balls

Sunday, December 14th, 2008

My favorite FSMas decoration by far is the festive Flying Spaghetti Monsters I created last year. They’re really easy to make, too; in fact, once you’ve got the process down, you’ll be birthing these babies like guppies. Recruit a friend or two, and y’all can get an assembly line going: a few Pastafarians to weave the noodles together, and another heathen to glue on the pom poms and googly eyes.

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Surely I jest, right?: If they’re soooo easy to make, you ask, why did I wait until today to blog the instructions? Well, because it’s a huge pain in the ass to take pictures for illustrative purposes while your living room floor is covered with pipe cleaners and pom poms, and there’s a glue gun smoking in the background, and your nosy doggehs are running off with half-finished monsters stuffed in their maws. In other words, please excuse the sub-par photo quality. The pictures I took on Friday didn’t come out quite as nicely as I’d hoped, but there’s no way I’m doing a reshoot. I have monsters to make, peoples!

For this project, you’ll need:

* “Chenille” pipe cleaners, preferably in sparkly shades of red, green, gold and silver (for the noodley appendages)
* Pom poms (round, cushy balls), also with a metallic sparkle, preferably in matching colors (for the soya balls)
* Googly eyes (um, for the eyes)
* Either a hot glue gun or a very strong glue (to keep it all together)

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Noodles on a cross.

Monday, December 8th, 2008

Last year, the Mr. and I started a new holiday tradition; rather than celebrate Festivus or x-mas, we decided to observe FSMas (or CriFSMas, if you prefer) instead. Whereas FSM = Flying Spaghetti Monster, the holiday basically revolves around two things: pasta and pirates.

Since this is somewhat of a fringe (spoof) religion (for now, muahahahaha!), you can’t exactly go to the Buy More and purchase decorations off the shelves. So also last year, I started blogging my FSMas decorating ideas, if only to amuse myself, but also in hopes of giving all y’all other heathens out there a kick in the pants and away from traditional Christmas festivities. We’re in a War on Christmas, peoples – pick a side.

I started out with the best of intentions in 2007, but didn’t get to blog many craft projects before the season was over. Given that it’s already December 8th, 2008 is shaping up to be a real world busy / internet sparse-y year as well, but I promise I’ll try to blog as much as time allows. (Suddenly, starting the season a week or so before Halloween doesn’t seem like such a buzzkill.)

To recap last year’s FSMas yummyness, we had:

* FSMas cards (two, yo!);

* Magical FSMas Vaginas (for the tree, natch);

* Pasta, pirate and FSM magnets for the fridge (i.e., Her Noodliness’s Tomb);

* Community/college bulletin boards, lined with all manner of FSM propaganda;

* Flags, flags and more flags;

* Flying spaghetti monster photos, displayed in – what else? – macaroni-lined frames; and

* Pirate booty galore.

I’d intended to write about the most important of FSMas items (that would be the tree, silly!) tonight, but I ended up finishing the decorating instead. So here’s an easy one: Noodles on a cross.

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Stop Global Warming: Become a Pirate (Party like it’s 1725!)

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

It’s just not FSMas without pirates, mate!

If you’re worshiping the noodles-n-balls this year, don’t forget your pirate gear. That means you’d better stock up on eye patches, bandannas, gold doubloons, triangle hats, gold garland, black flags, jugs o’ Captain Morgan’s rum, and other pirate booty.

Being the tree huggers we are, the Mr. and I erected a glittery pirate display in the front window. Fuck the Baby Jebus and his lame-o Nativity Scene – we’ve got ice sheets to save!

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There are no false idols in frames lined with macaroni.

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

No, seriously.

According to teh Wiki,

Idolatry is a major sin in the Abrahamic religions regarding image. It is usually defined as worship of any cult image, idea, or object, as opposed to the worship of a God. In religions where such activity is not considered as sin, the term “idolatry” itself is absent.

A search of the Church’s archives of saucy teachings turns up not even one instance of the word.

Hence, there are no false idols in these fantabulous macaroni-lined frames! Good thing, because I made them specifically to display His Noodliness’s visage this FSMas season.

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Holy Cannoli! It’s the Ghost of FSMas Past!

Monday, December 17th, 2007

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Coming to punish me – with a case o’ unholy heartburn, no doubt! – for my procrastination on the FSMas blogging front.

No worry! I should be finishing up the rest of my FSMas chores tonight – damn cards! – so blogging will resume shortly.

Until then, be touched.

RAmen.

His Noodliness sez, "Let ur freak flag fly!"

Thursday, December 13th, 2007

Look! Pirate flags! On Amazon! For just $5!

If you don’t have a flagpole out front, like moi*

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then you can always hang ’em somewhere inside instead.

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Community Bulletin Boards: The Ultimate in Shabby Chic Holiday Decor

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

OK, so this diy FSMas idea is so simple, it’s pretty much self-explanatory:

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It’s a community bulletin board, baby!

Just buy (or make) a bulletin board, fill with FSM propaganda, and hang. Doesn’t get any easier than that.

Ours measures 2’x3′ and is made of cork with a wood frame. We requested – and actually received – ours on freecycle, but they don’t cost all that much at the store. Less still if you buy some cork board and frame it yourself.

The fliers are from http://www.venganza.org (click on over to materials). For an extra-collegiate vibe, print up at least one with flier with tear-off tabs – and tear a few off yourself. (Or, if you’re uber-anal like me, neatly cut the tabs with scissors and fold them down/up for a 3D effect.)

Bonus: This is one decoration you can leave up year-round, either with your FSM fliers, or rotating the artwork through the seasons/holidays.

Garnish your Fridge with Love

Sunday, December 9th, 2007

After all, it is the great cooler which keeps His Noodliness’s remains fresh and edible. Kind of like Jesus’s tomb. Which would make your Tupperware the Shroud of Turin, I guess.

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In semi-seriousness, decorating your fridge (or filing cabinet or whathaveyou) is a fairly simple FSMas project.

Assuming, of course, you have the following:

* A photo printer (or a few days to order out at Sam’s or similar);
* A laminator (or the gas for a trip to Kinko’s or whatnot); and
* A hawt glue gun (this one you simply must buy, since it’s a necessity for like 96.666% of the craft projects I’m blogging).

Just head on over to http://www.venganza.org – specifically, their graphics department – and download like crazy. (There’s also some great stuff on Flickr.) When you’re all right-clicked out, shrink your FSM bootay down to fridge size. Meaning, each photo should measure around 3-4″ at its widest/longest point. When you’re done, print your photos up, laminate them to keep the crud off (especially if they’re going on the fridge, source numero uno of crusty materials), and then hot glue magnets on the backs of each.

FYI: Make sure you stick with flat, even magnets, preferably the same size as the photos…uneven magnets sometimes show through.

Another idea is to reinvent new uses for old magnets; for example, I added some strategically placed pasta to make these lame Christian do-gooders into rockin’ FSMas angels:

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And if you’ll click through to view a larger version of that first picture, you’ll see that I also glued teeny tiny pasta pieces to a set of small magnetic frames I already had sitting around. Pop in some photos of Johnny Depp, and you’re good to go!

But wait! Where to get these magical magnets, you ask?

Well, if you don’t currently have any laying around the house, you’ll probably have to invest in some. Wal-Mart and the box stores sell ’em. You can even get magnetic strips that just peel and stick, if you’d rather forgo the glue gun.

But.

Better still, if you’ve had the foresight/pack-rattiness to hoard save all those crappy magnets that have been accumulating in your junk drawer over the past year. You know the ones: adverts for your local accountant/insurance salesman/auto mechanic/Pizza Hut/abortionist (OK, so I’m kidding on that last one…if only!) that swarm your mailbox, oftentimes in those useless ValuPak packets. Rather than chuck them, save and cherish these pieces of ferrite gold, for they will one day support His Noodliness as he hovers on your fridge, offering blessings and oregano (or blessings of oregano) at mealtime.

Or, you can try Freecycle or Cragslist. I scored a whole shitload off of my local KCF list last year.

Magical FSMas Vagina, how I Love Thee!

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

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Forgive the delay in posting the first of my FSMas Noodles-n-Balls decorating tips. I’ve been busy dressing my dogs up as pirates, getting them drunk on Captain Morgan’s Rum, and then snapping naughty pics under the FSMas tree. I’m sure you understand. And I’m doubly sure that this wondrous pasta vagina will more than make up for it.

You can create your own with a jumbo shell, a tomato fusilli, a piece of penne, a few inches of string, and a dollop of hot glue. Feminist perspective a plus.

A Month of Noodles and Balls

Saturday, December 1st, 2007

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Jesus may be the reason…but His Noodliness makes it delicidoso!

Since the Mr. and I are atheists, we find it kinda hard to get into the Christmas spirit and all. But we love a party, and seeing as there aren’t really any big secular holidays to get excited about, we’ve been hesitant to scrap the idea of “x-mas” altogether. So we thought we might try celebrating His Noodliness instead of Santa and Rudolph. That’s right – it’s gonna be a Flying Spaghetti Monster-mas this year!

Now, you can’t exactly traipse into Wal-Mart and come out with a cart full of FSM decorations, so we’ve had to improvise.* Not easy, since we’re 1) starting from scratch and 2) not very crafty.** Even so, I think we done good.

We went shopping*** a few weeks before Tofurky Day, and came home with a fuckload of pipe cleaners, googly eyes, fake fruit, glue sticks, raffia, and string. Oh, and pasta. Can’t forget the pasta! (And if you happen to overbuy like we did, you can always eat the leftovers. Score!)

I started with the craft projects the day after t-day, and worked through the weekend. It takes way longer to string together penne garland and craft glittery Flying Spaghetti Monsters than you’d think. I didn’t get to actually put up the decorations until earlier this week, but that was a piece o’ cannoli compared to making them. We still have some odds and ends to take care of, but I’m almost ready to call it al dente.

Given all the work that’s went into my carbolicious masterpiece, it’d be a shame not to share. So stay tuned for future FSMas posts (they even have their very own category for easy browsing!). I was gonna do a whole “twelve days of FSMas” thing, but I’m not sure I can eke out twelve distinct decorating ideas. Instead, I’ll post ’em here and there as time allows. If you’re hungering to see what I’ve come up with, I just uploaded a ton of FSMas pics to Flickr. Check out the set here.

Till then, I’ll leave you with my x-mas card from 2005, which set this whole thing in motion. That, and my anti-theist/pro-pasta agenda.

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FYI, diy instructions for the card:

1) Start with this photo and a copy of Photoshop;

2) Copy and paste in some x-mas clip art for the holly codpiece and Santa hat, then transform to scale;

3) Replace the black border with a red one;

4) Apply a red photo filter;

5) Type in your oh-so-clever title and FSMas greeting (I used the font “A Yummy Apology”);

6) Send to friends, relatives, and those right-wing wankers who clutter your inbox with urban legend forwards.

* OK, so that’s only half true. I’ve been able to re-purpose some traditional (but secular) x-mas decorations to fir my pasta-n-pirates theme. For example, red and gold garland have great crossover potential, since they’re the colors of red pasghetti sauce and gold doubloons.

** When I was in high school, I bought yards upon yards of funky fabric, with dreams of transforming a dozen or so pairs of tapered jeans into bell bottoms. That damn fabric is still sitting in my closet – two moves, 1100 miles, and 13+ years later. Musty as hell, too.

*** The Dollar Store is a goldmine for craft supplies. FSM booty galore!