crazed ninjas anonymous

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Curious George

I'm posting an article on Curious George for your perusal. I started looking up stuff about Curious George when I realized that I am just as curious/annoyingly nosy as any monkey. And because I have hair on my feet. Enjoy!

Who isn't smitten with Curious George? No matter your age, the inquisitive little fellow who always seems to get into one scrape after another has, in all likelihood, captured your heart.Perhaps his popularity lies in the predictability of his unpredictability. You know that the second the man with the yellow hat leaves the house, warning George to be careful, George is going to get into trouble. And when George starts getting into trouble, he only digs himself deeper.As Margret Rey observed, "George can do what kids can't do. He can paint a room from the inside. He can hang from a kite in the sky. He can let the animals out of their pens on the farm. He can do all these naughty things that kids would like to do." One cannot give enough credit to the Reys. H. A.'s delightful illustrations and Margret's clear and precise turn of phrase may appear effortless, but that's only because they labored over each book to achieve that perfect look and tone.Instead of relying on marketing surveys for book ideas, H. A. and Margret Rey each looked to the child within. "I know what I liked as a child," H. A. once said, "and I don't do any book that I, as a child, wouldn't have liked."

About H. A. and Margret Rey
About H. A. and Margret Rey -->
Hans Augusto Reyborn onSeptember 16, 1898Margret Reyborn in Hamburg onMay 16, 1906Hans Rey and friendMargret Rey and hercocker spaniel Scoopy,circa 1956
Hans Augusto Rey was born on September 16, 1898, in Hamburg, Germany. He grew up there near the world-famous Hagenbeck Zoo, and developed a lifelong love for animals and drawing. Margarete Elisabeth Waldstein (who would be known to most of the world as Margret Rey) was also born in Hamburg on May 16, 1906. The two met briefly when Margret was a young girl, before she left Hamburg to study art. They were reunited in 1935 in Rio de Janeiro, where Hans was selling bathtubs as part of a family business and Margret was escaping the political climate in Germany. Margret convinced Hans to leave the family business, and soon they were working together on a variety of projects.Hans and Margret were married in Brazil on August 16, 1935, and they moved to Paris after falling in love with the city during their European honeymoon. It was there that Hans published his first children's book, after a French publisher saw his newspaper cartoons of a giraffe and asked him to expand upon them. Raffy and the Nine Monkeys (Cecily G. and the Nine Monkeys in the British and American editions) was the result, and it marked the debut of a mischievous monkey named Curious George.After Raffy and the Nine Monkeys was published, the Reys decided that Curious George deserved a book of his own, so they began work on a manuscript that featured the lovable and exceedingly curious little monkey. But the late 1930s and early '40s were a tumultuous time in Europe, and before the new manuscript could be published, the Reys—both German Jews—found themselves in a horrible situation. Hitler and his Nazi party were tearing through Europe, and they were poised to take control of Paris. Knowing that they must escape before the Nazis took power, Hans cobbled together two bicycles out of spare parts. Early in the morning of June 14, 1940, the Reys set off on their bicycles. They brought very little with them on their predawn flight — only warm coats, a bit of food, and five manuscripts, one of which was Curious George. The Nazis entered Paris just hours later, but the Reys were already on their way out. They rode their makeshift bicycles for four long days until reaching the French-Spanish border, where they sold them for train fare to Lisbon. From there they made their way to Brazil and on to New York City, beginning a whole new life as children's book authors.Curious George was published by Houghton Mifflin in 1941, and for sixty years these books have been capturing the hearts and minds of readers throughout the world. All the Curious George books, including the seven original stories by Margret and Hans, have sold more than twenty-five million copies. So popular that his original story has never been out of print, George has become one of the most beloved and recognizable characters in children's literature. His adventures have been translated into many languages, including Japanese, French, Afrikaans, Portuguese, Swedish, German, Chinese, Danish, and Norwegian.Although both of the Reys have passed away — Hans in 1977 and Margret in 1996—George lives on in the Curious George Foundation. Established in 1989, this foundation funds programs for children that share Curious George's irresistible qualities—ingenuity, opportunity, determination, and curiosity in learning and exploring. Much consideration is given to programs that benefit animals, through preservation as well as the prevention of cruelty to animals. The foundation supports community outreach programs that emphasize the importance of family, from counseling to peer support groups.

Monday, July 24, 2006


A brief update:

hung out with the guys today, Jon and Betty left this evening. Had a campfire with the guys, guess i just bummed around with them today. Got a phone call this morning, I have a job interview at Canadian Tire tomorrow. yay. Tomorrow going into the Peg, then job interview, then Muay Thai. Skipped Muay Thai tonight to watch Anacondas II with the guys, I was also feeling pretty tired. My time would've been better spent at kickboxing though. Or banging my head against a wall. I feel that anything would have been more productive than watching that stupid movie. that's all for now.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

me flexing on the Kolapore Trail
Wired and Slightly Proud of It

It's one AM and I'm totally wired. I'm usually not like this at one AM, but after an early morning of getting jumped by surprise visitors, this feels like a late night. It's been an awesome day; i've thoroughly enjoyed seeing the guys again. They're here for the week. This should be good.
Right now I'm listening to U2's "Original of the Species." I remember hearing this song on the radio on the way back from Kansas at approximately 4am. I couldn't sleep at the time. Wave of nostalgia.
I can't even remember why I'm writing on here right now. It will probably earn me a) a comment on my amazing friends (YOU GUYS ROCK! YAY FOR AMAZING FRIENDS!) b) some old friend dropping me a line here to say "hi," and/or c) people telling me to get more sleep.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

<-my new sport/obsessive passion.. kinda anyways.


<- clocktower near my house

Here's an update for you all. There's nothing at all to update you about, I actually just feel like writing my little heart out right now. So please bear with me.

Life is good right now. I have been enjoying a fairly relaxed summer. Unfortunately, I have not got nearly as much reading/martial arts training/cycling/socializing done as i had hoped to. I am also currently unemployed, which makes sleeping till noon an easy option to choose. If you haven't figured it out, this has probably been my laziest summer yet. Oh well. I suppose it happens sometimes.

My cousins from Alberta have been here all week. We've had a fun time hanging out with them. They're leaving tomorrow morning, then tomorrow evening some friends from Waterloo are coming for the weekend. We have had company constantly over the last few weeks. It has been tiring to have company around for the last few weeks, but on the same token, it is cool that they would take the time out of their lives to take part in ours. I guess that's what family is all about, isn't it?

Everything else goes well I guess. Tonight was my third Muay Thai class in the new gym, which we share with a church. Classes are hell, as usual. Gosh. I never want to hear about "how much my legs hurt because i just went out for a 1/2km jog" again. The teacher gets us running just over a mile back and forth across the gym, then gets us doing pad drills. It's rough, but physically, I'm slowly adapting to the abuse. I am beating myself into a better person.

Hope you, my readers, are doing well. Drop me a line/comment.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Ow.. Ow My Legs... Ow

First day back at Muay Thai after the little hiatus. We are now in a big, bright facility that we share with a church group. It is nice and spacious. The coach had us sprinting across and back the room, doing pushups in between. These classes will put me back into serious shape. All the running and the kicking has left me rather sore. I'm getting old.... but not really. Muay Thai is a lot of fun; physically, it is much more demanding than jujitsu. Technically, however, it is much simpler, which is nice for a guy like me!

Things are going well, I've been hanging out with some new friends and enjoying their company. It's sort of strange interacting with people who already have their local social networks and relationships in place. It is strange being the newcomer. It is strange being the outsider. However, people are friendly and welcoming, and I'm enjoying getting to know everyone around here. It is also a nice area. It is a bit too flat for my tastes, but it is beautiful nonetheless. Apparently there are some good biking trails at Sandilands Park, which is near our town. Hopefully I'll be able to get in some quality cycling this summer.

My cousins are here now, they are staying until Friday. Seem like cool guys. It will be fun to hang out with them and reconnect. Hopefully all goes well. (funny story I convinced my uncle to drive down the wrong side of the road on the shoulder because he missed a turn. He did it and an RCMP officer saw, then came and had a little chat with him. man that guy gets giddy around cops :p) hopefully everyone's doing well. Despite the fun of making new relationships and connections, I miss you all terribly, and can't wait to see everyone again.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

A Poem

I was asked to update. Unfortunately, I really can't think of anything worth telling my readers about. I did, however, find this poem at, written by a doctor with MSF. Thought provoking:

Poem : For Whom the Bell Tollsby Steve Cornish
"Surrounded by winter's cold harsh darknessThe room, hazily illuminated by the smoky oil lampThis lump like a jagged rock in my throat, refuses to recedeThis tasteless tea slides down jerkingly bringing no warmth, no comfort.
It seems impossible - When, I think of… Those in Chernokozovo being tortured at this hour, Of those cold and scared,Shivering in damp, dark covered pits; Of the women…Whose swollen bellies constantly remind them of the outrage done to themNot only has their dignity and freedom been denied them now - But…they will re-live the horrific incidents for the rest of their lives.
Stabbings, beatings, killings, electric shocks, faces scorched by gas firesBodies sailing out 5th story windows…. People screaming and begging for their lives;Proclaimed innocence, last wild-eyed looks of terror before accepting the inevitableChildren, witnessing their parents death, explosions, passersby dropping to the groundSniper fire, rocket blasts, artillery barrages, buildings crumbling like their lives.
And the WORLD… Looks on - or is it - the other way!A detached impersonal collective world, a non-responsible WECitizens, mothers, brothers, aunts, and grandparentsCollectively continue with their daily lives, seemingly unawareHow can they fail to see? To listen? To care?
The war will rage on, as will the abusesNo one cares to send a clear signal, a messageNo one cares to become outraged. Outraged enough to put an end to the terror.
Not a mad-man, nor a crazed dictatorOur typical culprits absent, But a proud - an articulate, calculated statesman, Embraced by the WORLD and her statesman, Encouraged and supported as he rides head held high sitting atop a throne of corpses.
I cannot go on, month after month; Listening to the horror storiesMy interpreters can hear no more, And I?Why collect such misery to inform, when only deaf ears are reached.
My dinner left unfinished, I take leave of my Chechen hosts, For a solitary un-easy restless sleepOnly to soon, I too will take leave of the population and their miseryI too will lose my outrage, and will pursue my own concernsAnd the terror will continue un- abettedEven my faint pestering cry will seizeRejoining the impersonal WORLD, We together will not care,As long as the terror is kept at a safe distance from ourselves."

Monday, July 10, 2006

The Happenin's of Brahm

So my computer is back up. YEAH! I'm writing a blog post here to update everybody a little bit more in-depth of what has been going on here. We arrived here just over two weeks ago; however, our junk was almost a week behind us, so we were sort of camping out in our new house for a few days. We arrived here on a Thursday, and our stuff came on the following Tuesday. Oh well. But it was good to finally get set up and begin to feel somewhat moved in. We met our new neighbors to the right, Myron and Cheryl. They have a son in his twenties (who lives nearby in a house with some other college-aged guys... funny story from that house, will tell later on in the post) and a daughter my age who lives with them.
On my first night here I found a Judo dojo, and watched their class for an hour. During that hour I decided that Judo, while an interesting sport, is not for me. I am used to jujitsu... I want brutality.... judo grabs someone by the collar and throws them down... jujitsu kicks them in the throat, throws them down, then twists their leg until a submission. yay jujitsu. The next Tuesday, however, I found a kickboxing club and did a free trial class with them. It was brutal. We were led through a fairly intense workout which left me soaked with sweat. Then the teacher points to the whiteboard and says, "on the board is the assignement you have to do before you move on to the rest of the class." And on the board there is a list of exercises: 2oo pushups, 1oo situps, 5o crunches, 1o tuck-jumps, and a whole bunch of other things. I did everything except for 100 pushups. And I thought I was in such great shape....
The next night, Wednesday, I was on my porch playing guitar when the neighbor girl'l boyfriend came over. We introduced ourselves and all that jazz, he played my guitar, then I hung out with his girlfriend and him. We went for a bikeride, and went to Tim Horton's. I also hung out with them on the weekend. We went to Rhandi's (the neighbor girl's) older brothers house for Canada day and hung out there. They all had cool guitars, and some of them had pet snakes. One of the guys had a mini dirtbike, which we all rode. It was a REALLY cool bike... it was youth-sized, and went pretty fast. I decided it would be a really good idea to "impress the guys" by taking the thing as fast as i could get it to go up and down the street. While going ridiculously fast, I tried to swerve to avoid some mud. The bike, however, went out from under me, and I fell face first into the mud, skidding on my chest/arms (i was wearing no shirt and no helmet) for about 4 yards. I got up covered in mud/blood, and drove the bike back to the house. When the guys saw me, they were horrified by what had happened to their foolish new friend; they sent me into the shower to clean the mud off of me, and that's where I realized how painful the accident actually was. After the painful deal of getting the mud out of my open wounds, I emerged from the shower and was assured that they were going to find something to clean me up with. Unfortunately, rubbing alcohol was the best they had, and they all laughed at me as I jumped up and down and screamed in pain. Eventually they took me to their next door neighbor, who used to be a nurse. She cleaned me up properly, and bandaged my wounds. I have bloodied up my elbow, my abdomen, and my leg. Fortunately, they are all healing well.
Nothing else has really happened that is worth reporting. Rhandi took Tom and me into Winnipeg to see the city, we had a nice time. The grandparents are here for a visit, we are enjoying their company. I am planning to travel back to the 'loo in the near future, so hopefully I will see you all soon.