Monday, May 19, 2014

Final Feature Sidebar

This vendor from a toy show at the Santa Clara Fairgrounds has a variety of items including Monster High dolls which are what many doll collectors are currently looking for. After all, not everyone likes Barbie. Who said women don't go to toy shows or comic conventions?

If you thought you were a big fan of Ghostbusters, think again. These four are best friends who love to dress up at every collector event they go to as characters from their favorite movie; Ghostbusters. If that's not dedication then I don't know what is. But they're not at a toy show just so they can show off their homemade costumes. They're at a toy show to look for some items at add to their collections. Luckily for them they did find some things they needed and will be going home feeling very accomplished as many collectors do at these events.
At many events especially such as toy shows, the corner tables are usually more expensive than aisle tables. Here is a vendor taking advantage of his space by putting his largest and brightest object front and center. Although he does have a reason for displaying it there. It just so happens to be logo of his company. It's a good thing he doesn't work for Apple because I don't think having a small silver apple with a bite taken out of it would attract as much business as a large red robot. 
Here is a panel at a convention called Babscon in Burlingame. The voice actors have already spoken, answering general questions and giving a background of their time in show business but now it's time that many fans have been waiting for, fan questions. As it is, there are people sitting on the floor because all the seats were taken so one can only imagine how long this line would take had hey answered every fan's questions. Unfortunately there was only time to answer about half of everyone in line's questions but knowing Bay Area fans, they'll be back in that line next year.
At Big Wow! Comic Fest at the San Jose Convention Center, the fans aren't shy when it comes to dressing up as their favorite heroes from comic books, nor are they shy when everyone wants to take their picture. They each have a sense of pride as they created their costumes from scratch. That is no easy task but worth it at times like this. 
Many of the attendees at Big Wow! Comic Fest got to meet Neal Adams who is one of the most popular and accomplished artists in the comic book industry. What is just as noteworthy as meeting him is getting some of your comics signed by the legend himself which he did at his booth. He is definitely in the upper echelon of artists in the comic book industry and he was humbled by all the fans who came by to see him. 
Here is a replica of the Batmobile from the 1966 Batman series starring Adam West as the titular character. It got more attention than some of the guests at Big Wow! Comic Fest as it's engine's roar could be heard across the convention center. 
There are a lot of Ghostbusters fans in the Bay Area who attend many events. Those fans got a big treat when they arrived only to see the Ecto-1 from the films. Making its way to a convention is rare enough but the Bay Area prides itself as to having one of the largest Ghostbusters fan bases around so there was no better event to bring this vehicle to than Big Wow! Comic Fest.  

My Collection:
I started collecting in 2006. That's when I bought the first figure that's currently in my collection. It was a Ben 10 alien from my local Target that I planned on opening but convinced myself to wait until I got the whole set. Once I got the set it popped in my head that I should keep each figure in its packaging so they can retain their value with the hopes that eventually they would increase in value. From then on I followed that same principle for everything I bought for my collection. The manufacturers know that a lot of consumers don't open their figures so they're getting pretty good when it comes to making their packaging appealing to keep the figures in. As for my collection, I don't just collect from one company or character. I collect comics, figures and even items as obscure as soda cans from various comic, video game and movie franchises such as Harry Potter, Star Trek and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. 

Here are some of my comics stacked meticulously in an organized system based on publisher, event, etc. so if I needed a specific one I could just pull it out right away without wasting time sorting through each and every one of them. Unfortunately, there isn't enough room to store all of my comics here so the rest are in the closet. 
This is one of the walls of my room. Although room sounds a little generic so I'm thinking about giving it a cooler name. Another collector I know calls the room where he has his collection the dork room and everyone knows it by that name. I'd like my collection to have the same recognition once it gets more exposure.
This wall is my favorite because it's the only one without any obstacle when it comes to displaying my collection items. One wall has my television mounted on it as seen above, another has a large window taking up most of it, and the last wall contains the closet as well as the doorway. Overall my collection is big and always expanding. It's fueled by my passion for these rich characters and stories that resonate with each and every fan whether they collect or not. I'm just one of the many devoted fans in the Bay Area who go to every event they can attend and have their collections at home celebrating what they're a fan of.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Copy Edit the World

This is from an article on Time's website. The writer uses resume three times. The first two times are without accent marks while the third time has accent marks. Also, a comma is missing after instead in the second sentence.
This is also from Time's website. In the bottom paragraph, the writer uses "raises" when the correct form should be "raise."

I saw this on 'Good Morning America.' The word "says" is used when "say" should be used because the subject is plural. 
Here is a link of resources from another one of my classes where the professor misspelled Madame Blavatsky's last name. She spells it Blavasky. 

Monday, April 28, 2014

Japanese Internment Memorial Essay

The Japanese American Internment Memorial is dedicated to those Japanese Americans who were placed in internment camps after Japan's bombing of Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941.
Sculpted by artist Ruth Asawa, the memorial was unveiled in 1996. Each panel has incredible details of the depicted events on both sides of the wall. Asawa is a Japanese American artist who was among those interned during WWII.
Both sides have similar details but unique in meaning, such as barbed wire.
On one side, the barbed wire is curled, symbolizing the farm wire as seen in farms owned by Japanese American citizens in California prior to the removal. The other side depicts straight barbed wire that was used as part of the barriers for Japanese American internment camps.
San Jose itself played a role in the internment process. A San Jose State University building was used as a processing center for Japanese Americans who reported for relocation. The building was later named after SJSU judo trainer by the name of Yoshihiro Uchida, who served in the US Army during WWII.

Can something like this happen again? Most likely not since the current state of the world is a lot different than what it was back then. It shouldn’t be seen as impossible to happen again but realistically I don’t see it happening in the near or distant future. The countries of the world today are surely not at peace with every other country as there will always be turmoil among nations for whatever reasons.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Fish Out of Water

I went to a hockey game that saw the San Jose Sharks face off against the Los Angeles Kings. I'm not a fan of hockey nor have I ever been to a hockey game. I can't say that I'd ever go back because I have nothing invested in the league or any teams as local as the Sharks are. It's also a sport I've never played before in any way, shape or form.
The only reason I went was because my friend had an extra ticket he didn't know what to do with. He knew I never talked about hockey but didn't want it to go to waste so he asked me and the rest is history.
I figured at least I'd get to experience something I've never seen in person before. Maybe I'd go home wanting to see more of it and become a Sharks fan like some of my friends and family are. Boy was I wrong.
It was the most boring sporting event I've ever been to. Granted, I didn't know the rules, players or anything about the league really. But my experience did everything but convince me to want to become a fan of the sport and at the very least, return to see another game in person or even on television.
What did it for me was the environment of the arena. It was loud which I assumed it would be but I didn't think it was going to be that loud. My ears are still ringing. I also couldn't see the puck at all. I just waited until the other attendees jumped off their seats and clapped to know when a goal was scored. I guess they're all used to moving their eyes back and forth constantly for around three hours. I give them credit for staving of dizziness which I felt almost instantly.
I also noticed there were more Caucasians than any other ethnicity at the game. They all wore teal to represent the Sharks while I looked out of place with a red jacket on. I guess I didn't get the memo. That's what the whole night felt like; me not getting the memo. It was like the game was an elaborate inside joke that everyone was in on except me. Never before have I felt more like a fish out of water.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

IMHO (In My Humble Opinion)

In my humble opinion, the MTV Movie Awards are a joke. My opinion on this event got fueled when the 2014 rendition aired this past weekend. There are so many things wrong with this "awards" show that ironically they are the same reasons it will probably be on for years to come.
For one, the show doesn't take itself seriously. To be fair it doesn't claim to be an Oscars competitor but they just seem not to care about the quality of their presentation. They film parodies based on the biggest movies of the previous year, and by biggest I mean the ones that had the most explosions and/or crude humor.
 Secondly, the categories are the silliest ones I've ever seen on an awards show. I saw the Kid's Choice Awards last month and the categories on that show weren't even as childish as those on this show.
 Lastly, there's the logistics of the show's existence altogether. The channel it airs on is MTV which stands for Music Television not Movie Television. The channel is mostly known for reality shows nowadays.
There is no other channel as misnamed as MTV. If this show were aired on Comedy Central, which is its sister network, then that would make more sense being as this awards show relies on its humor and foolishness to keep its audience from changing the channel. I myself could never sit down and watch a whole telecast, being an age within the targeted demographic.
The MTV Movie Awards isn't the most ceremonious or kid-friendly awards show on TV, but given the channel it's on and the targeted audience I can see why it's lasted this long.

Here's what USA Today took from this event.

Here's Time's explanation of the event.

Word #10

1. serendipitous
2. The three conditions many sociologists believe to be the keys to developing lasting friendships: proximity, repeated serendipitous interactions, and a safe setting.
Article: Facebook’s Friend Problem // Site:
3. (adjective) occurring or discovered by chance in a happy or beneficial way.
4. After a series of serendipitous events, the Sharks managed to win the game.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Word #9

1. bloatware
2. In addition, Samsung's efforts to streamline its own custom interface and reduce pre-installed bloatware pay off.
Article: Samsung’s Best Phone Gets Better // Site:
3. (noun) software whose usefulness is reduced because of the excessive disk space and memory it requires.
4. My phone didn’t perform as well as I thought because of all its bloatware.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Drinking Coffee Elsewhere

It's evident that ZZ Packer is a very talented writer with her own extremely unique style. I feel like I'm sitting in front of her as we're drinking coffee and she's telling me these stories. She takes us into the lives of these characters in a tone that doesn't get stale nor repetitive. She has various themes in her stories that are great from keeping the reader from getting bored such as a group of drifters in Japan who are starving and unable to find work and a girl living in a ghetto who has ambitions of the larger world she's seen on the TV screens in the store nearby where even the shopkeeper has his own hope for fulfilling his own American Dream. When you mix similes and metaphors at the appropriate times as well as Packer's own vision imbued in the stories, you get an interesting read. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

NPR Radio interview analysis

I listened to "Health Insurance Help for Laid Off Workers May End." Sarah Vandi interviewed a woman named Nicole Pelton who was affected by the lack of health insurance
Vandi overall made the interview more like a conversation so the interviewee could be more comfortable. She was prepared with in-depth questions and was able to get Pelton to discuss the situation in a way she might not have told anyone before. Vandi could get Pelton to talk by asking her questions pertaining to her children and husband which allowed her to get many quotes to create her story. I assume it was easy to get Pelton to talk about something that was relevant and close to her heart because her family's situation made her give great detailed answers. 
As for an apparent relationship, they sounded like friends talking which happens because of the interviewer. Vandi makes it look easy.
I learned that once the interviewer finds the sweet spot for the interviewee, the interview opens up and offers a lot of quality information to be used in their story. It's also interesting to see how a conversational interview can be used to an interviewer's advantage. Making the interviewee comfortable works and helps the interview go places it might not otherwise go had the interviewer not had a plan. Once the interviewee's trust is earned, more difficult questions can be asked and the answers will come out like hotcakes. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Word #8

1. meticulous
2. His grandfather liked to play the first-person shooter Wolfenstein 3D and meticulously drew each room's map on graph paper, noting the location of every secret he could find.
Article: Life After Titanfall // Site:
3. (adjective) showing great attention to detail; very careful and precise.
4. The lady walked meticulously as the doctor said she could walk on her own after surgery.

Copy Edit the World

All of these were found at a new restaurant not too far from where I live called Bangkok Boulevard.

Typo: Add
Correction: Ad

Typo: Togo
Correction: To Go

Typo: Carter
Correction: Cater

Monday, March 10, 2014

Extra Credit

1) Phrase: Cut the Cheese
Origin: Cheese had a thick layer of wax on it's exterior when it was packed. It was bought in large amounts and as it got older and smellier, no one could smell it because of the layer of wax. Once someone cut through the layer to get to the cheese, it released a stinky odor. So when someone smelled a bad odor, they would ask, "Who cut the cheese?"
Meaning: To fart
Original Thought: As a kid I thought it meant somebody had body odor. I thought asking “Who cut the cheese?” was another way of asking “Who hasn’t taken a shower in a week?”

2) Phrase: Throw a Wrench in the Works
Origin: Low paid factory workers used to throw monkey wrenches into the industrial machines to get a break. The phrase was first used in 1931 by The Daily Express - talking about the head of the liberal party - "He hurled a monkey wrench into the machinery of Liberalism".
Meaning: To do something that prevents a plan or activity from succeeding
Original Thought: I thought it meant to give someone a hand. Like your hand represented a wrench and the works were what that person needed help with.

Word #7

1. elude
2. And yet, month after month, the story of what exactly happened with the launch of the original Defense Grid has eluded me.
Article: When a Successful Game is a Failure // Site:
3. (verb) evade or escape from (a danger, enemy, or pursuer), typically in a skillful or cunning way.
4. I hide near my trash can to catch the raccoon but it always finds a way to elude me.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Word #6

1. pitfall
2.But with success comes some pitfalls as well. (Article: How Flight Rising’s Creator Went from Developer to Deputy Site:
3. (noun) a hidden or unsuspected danger or difficulty.
4. He didn’t anticipate any pitfalls when he planned to climb the mountain.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Word #5

1. masquerade
2. But the failure in Apple's code means SecureTransport isn't checking the certificates properly, and anyone who wanted could masquerade as your banking site, your email, or worse. (The Dangers Behind Apple’s Epic Security Flaw on
3. (verb) pretend to be someone one is not.
4. That fraud is just someone who masquerades as someone who is homeless so people can give him free stuff.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Copy Edit the World

The first typo was found at a Thai restaurant. The second was found at a Chinese grocery store. The third I found while surfing the web. 
1. Typo: Frish Cake 
                                                                           Correction: Fish Cake

2.Typo: Brocori
                                                                          Correction: Broccoli 

Typo: Carer
Correction: Career

Monday, February 17, 2014

Mystery Character

He is explosive on the basketball court. His gazelle-like gracefulness with his brute strength is a monstrous combination to which any of his opponents can attest. Off the court, he is as stylish as a fashion mogul. He wouldn't be caught wearing the same thing twice, unless it's one of his signature shoes from his own line. Whether it's by his style, his likable personality, or his elegance on the basketball court, he will always be seen as one of the most popular athletes of all time.

Word #4

1. insular
2. It was personal and confrontational and insular. (Why the Fighting Game Community is Colorblind on
3. (adjective) ignorant of or uninterested in cultures, ideas, or peoples outside one's own experience.
4. The child was insular when it came to going to a church that practiced something he knew nothing about.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Word #3

1. prescient
2. The science of RoboCop is remarkably prescient. (‘RoboCop’ Review: Meet the New Model on
3. (adjective) having or showing knowledge of events before they take place.
4. It turns out the psychic was prescient when she said I would win something and I won the lotto a day later.

What Makes It News

Flappy Bird is an app that has adopted tens of millions of players in the last few months. Recently, Dong Nguyen, the creator of the game, announced that he would be taking it off the various app stores in which the game could be downloaded. He says he believed it was becoming too addictive to its players. I heard this story from a handful of my friends who played the game on a daily basis.
The news values that make this story newsworthy are unusualness and human interest. This story is unusual because Dong Nguyen created a game by himself and it became a smash hit. What was even more unusual was that Nguyen decided to end the game completely so no one could download it anymore. It’s extremely rare that someone does this after finding so much success worldwide. As mentioned before, tens of millions of people downloaded the game so a lot of people are sad, to say the least, that their newest obsession is gone for good. So human interest is definitely present.
To localize this story, one could interview local players and get their thoughts on Nguyen’s decision to end the game. There are sure to be many players of the game in the area who still play it even though it won’t be getting anymore updates. These diehard fans could explain why they keep playing a dead game. When it comes to the Silicon Valley, it’s never farfetched to think any piece of technology cannot be revived.

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Fly on the Wall

To many, Denny’s is a place where older people go to read the newspaper or enjoy a meal after church. What do I have to say about that assumption? Denny’s is the complete opposite. On the outside it may seem like a calm place but on the inside, it’s a circus of different things going on.
In front from where I sit, there’s a family with four children who are constantly running around the table. I blame the sugar they consumed by drowning their pancakes in syrup. Oh, and I think one of them farted. On my left, there’s a couple arguing about what to do for Valentine’s Day. He wants to stay home and cook her a meal, while she wants to go to Red Lobster. They leave before they settle on a decision. I say come back to Denny’s. Their prices are unbeatable. Then on my right, there’s an older man talking on his phone for what seemed like the whole time. Apparently his laundry is ready to be picked up, his mother needs dental surgery and I just discovered that my pet peeve is people talking on their phones in restaurants or any public place really.
This fly has seen, smelled and heard a lot of things on Denny’s wall. Since I can’t afford to go to Las Vegas to see the circus I guess this place isn’t a bad consolation. Plus they have great milkshakes.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Word #2

1. slopestyle
2. Take Russian slopestyle snowboarder Alexey Sobolev. (
3. (noun) a type of winter sporting event where the goal is to perform the most difficult tricks while getting the highest amplitude off of jumps
4. I competed in slopestyle and landed the most jumps to win the gold medal.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Your Favorite Writing

I really like this piece of writing because Ellis Hamburger gets into the gut of the app he’s trying to evaluate. Most app reviews are short and don’t cover every aspect of the app but this one is sensational and doesn’t leave anything out. The article is accompanied by a video but the writing is so good that you won’t miss anything from the video.
He says so much in so little like when he speaks of the performance of the app in the following sentence, “Everything from swipes to pinch-and-zooms respond instantaneously and naturally, and images load quickly.”
Ellis Hamburger’s article, “This just in: Paper is the best Facebook app ever” from Published February 3, 2014.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Word #1

1. cityscape
2. Tokyo's neon cityscapes recreated with thousands of dot stickers. (
3. (noun) the visual appearance of a city or urban area; a city landscape.
4. The bright lights brushed upon the cityscape.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

All About Me

My name is Henry Navarro. I'm from San Jose California. I'm majoring in journalism and linguistics. My professional aspirations include writing for European newspapers and/or magazines and teaching English in foreign countries. My strength as a writer is getting to the point without adding anything that wouldn't enhance the writing. My biggest weakness is just the opposite. I have a hard time writing to meet a word count that is significantly more than what I need to convey what I want to say about a topic. What I like to do in my spare time is play sports. I'll play anything that includes a ball and a goal. I also like playing along with Jeopardy when I can to see how I stack up against the contestants. Being on Jeopardy is definitely on my bucket list. I volunteer a lot for various organizations. Christmas is the best time to volunteer in my opinion. There’s no better feeling than knowing you’ve helped someone in need especially during the holidays. My hobby is collecting action figures and comic books. I take every chance I get to go to toy shows and comic conventions. It’s the only time I get to be around hundreds of people who share my interests. That is all about me.