Thursday, January 27, 2011


11-11-11, How My Biggest Fear Isn't Just Turning 25 Anymore

I have been looking forward to the year 2011 since 2000...why 2000? Because I knew we had survived the Y2K and that the 2000s were real, but... why 2011? Because not only is my favorite number "11" (I waited for my University's graduation countdown clock to hit 11 days 11 hours 11 mins 11 sec), I turn a quarter of a century on 11-11-11! Yes, this beyond awesome date happens once every hundred years and I turn 25 (ahhhhh mid twenties) on it. I'm not super religious or spiritual but I am somewhat of a math and symmetry nerd so obviously the date 11-11-11 has great significance to me.

I had big plans for this wonderful 11-11-11 Friday birthday, possibly party in the City with Diddy or most likely eat a ton of food with my closest friends followed by some (drinking) games.  Whatever we end up doing, the plan was to make it a day of celebration, UNTIL THE DIRECTOR OF THE SAW SERIES DARREN LYNN BOUSMAN DECIDED TO CREATE A HORROR FILM INSPIRED BY THE DATE "11-11-11".  WTFart.

There are very few things that I dislike: 1) Scary Movies, 2) Roller Coasters, and 3) Kasha.  Yes, that earthy grainy stuff Ukranians eat.  Being intentionally scared and voluntarily putting myself through traumatic, disturbing experiences is not what I call fun.  I absolutely hate scary movies, I even have to close my eyes during the previews on TV.  And now, Bousman has turned my numerically symmetric date into a money-making thriller that will probably come out only in 3D (or 11D?).  Of all things to make a movie about, why couldn't 11-11-11 be a romantic comedy starring Ashton Kutcher and a hot actress! Why a scary movie?!

I'll admit there are some intriguing and crazy theories about 11-11-11 that are worth pursuing.  I'm a huge believer in chance happenings--the most significant moments of my life were all by chance like meeting my boyfriend randomly at a Carnival, BU scoring 2 goals in less than a minute in the National title game which also happened to be the last hockey game of my college career and the birth of my lovely, beautiful sister--anyways, maybe this film is a test.  Maybe I need to face my fear of scary movies in order to fully grow up, or it could just mean your mid-twenties is absolutely SCARY.

All I know is this date means a lot to me for one reason or another, and for the rest of you crazy, scary movie fans you have something to look forward to too.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Old Hollywood Glamour at the Globes

Red carpet gowns are one of the few things that still gets the girl in me super excited, like SUPER EXCITED.  I love the sequins, diamonds, clutches, updos, side-dos and anticipation of what the stars will wear.  I ALMOST feel like I could relate to Rachel Zoe.  I was not disappointed at all at last night's Golden Globes, not even at Natalie Portman's ruby rose Viktor & Rolf dress!  The glamour and sophisticated styling choices last night reminded me of why we call these actors and actresses "movie stars", simply because these people SHINE.  Even Ricky Gervais' navy suit glimmered.  J-Lo's sheer crystal cape/cloak thing reminded me of Sandy's prom dress in Grease, which I love.  Hands down the most beautiful dress goes to Olivia Wilde's Marchesa princess gown (I usually hate strapless full-skirted dresses, but somehow the gold glitter and black made the dress less juvenile).  Megan Fox, being Megan Fox, looked HOTT (and really skinny) in a soft pink Armani PrivĂ© bandage dress.  Angelina Jolie and Anne Hathaway were mermaid twins, decked out in one-toned long sleeve sequined dresses both with plunging backs (Angie's less than Anne's).  And last but not least, Emma Stone sort of replaced what I would expect from Kate Bosworth, an understated Calvin Klein peach fitted dress.  One of my New Year's resolutions is to make more of an effort to dress up (how disappointing that I sported sweatpants and a hoodie to my friend's Golden Globes watching party), so don't be surprised if I look like a walking constellation one day.

Felix Morelo, the Man Who Draws Many Faces

You may have seen a mysterious man with a piece of white chalk drawing circular faces, one after another in a line down a sidewalk near Union Square or in Central Park or more recently (like tonight around 8 pm) on a Manhattan bound L Train.  This man of many faces is NYC Artist Felix Morelo, who I had met last summer on a sunny Saturday at Union Square park.  I was leaving the farmer's market and saw an unusual line of faces on the sidewalk and decided to follow it for about 10 feet, when I saw a smiling man (similar in expression to the faces he draws) sitting on a upside down milk carton crate, carefully sketching one face after another.  I went up to him and told him I liked what he was doing (and was a bit curious why he was doing it) and he handed me a hand drawn business card that said "Felix Morelo - Artist" that had an original sketch of two random people in hot pink gel pen.  That day, Felix hand-drew 1,420 unique faces with white chalk circling Union Square park.

Felix's street art is very temporary (foot traffic and rain keep his art from even lasting a day) and those who are fortunate enough to experience the joy in his faces will understand why this man with a piece of white chalk is so special.
I bumped into Felix Morelo's faces again tonight on the L Train heading towards 1st Ave, and he sketched a face onto the train's floor that looks just like me & my BU Frozen Fenway beanie.
To learn more about Felix Morelo, visit his website  

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Puka Plate Lunch PRIDE

One of the highlights of my recent trip home to Hawaii was visiting (and eating at) my family's new restaurant Puka Plate Lunch, which opened in Kalihi Valley last November.  Puka Plate Lunch has been open for almost two months and already feels at home in the friendly, family-oriented Kalihi Community.  During my 2-hour cashiering stint on my last day in Hawaii, a man walked in with his order memorized, "hamburger steak with one scoop rice" (usually comes with two), and when I gave him his plate lunch he said "this is the best hamburger steak I've ever had."  At that moment I thought, all the long hours and hard work my parents and family friends have put into this place is definitely worth it.

Puka's mission is to serve delicious local food and I can say first hand that they have succeeded.   Everything I had was delicious: Chicken Katsu, Mochiko Chicken, Garlic Chicken, Walnut Shrimp, Chili Cheese Fries and BBQ Kalbi.  Puka is also gaining buzz on the interwebs with some early reviews on Yelp and positive posts by local Hawaii bloggers like Eatizen Jane and SideCulture.

The restaurant is small but has that hole-in-the-wall charm you look for when craving a place for comfort foods.  Seeing the restaurant finally in person made me really proud of the branding work I did on the name and logo.  I truly appreciate everyone who stopped by Puka to support my family and please visit Puka's Facebook Page:

Don't forget to pick up a loyalty card
The logo looks sweet in this custom-made stamp
Special thanks to all my friends who checked out Puka Plate Lunch
View from behind the counter
I could really go for some plate lunch right now.  Boo for long distance.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Top 5 From A to Zeny Posts of 2010--Smythe Snuggie, GapLogo, Harry Potter

In 2010, my blog was renamed "From A to Zeny" from the previously "The Daily Zeny" for obvious reasons like not being able to post daily for the blog I started in college due to full-time work (but boy am I happy to be employed!).  I created this blog as a way for me to share the things that inspire me, to discuss the brands and campaigns that are influencing the industry and to capture memories I may later use to embarrass my friends (White Castle Trip) or laugh about over a few beers (Santacon).  I am very grateful to have friends that are nice enough to read my blog and still remain friends with me... you guys you are the best.  I also had the opportunity to connect with some cool people because of this blog like Joe Gebbia one of the founders of AirBnb and had my Santacon photos published in the Huffington Post.

Here are the Top 5 posts by pageviews from 2010:

My personal favorites are the recent London and Korea travel posts and the post about my family's restaurant Puka Plate Lunch.  I am looking forward to 2011, as I plan to continue blogging, learn how to ride a bike, find a step down converter so I may use my green sewing machine and possibly a blog redesign.  EXCITING!

To see the list of top 2009 posts click here.