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Vegas: Jerry’s Nugget Prime Rib Lunch

Vegas is a lot of different things to a lot of different people.
For some of us it’s home, whatever that means.
For others it’s a mecca of all things hedonistic, a glittering oasis of gluttonous treasures awaiting enjoyment. It can be a beacon of hope or a merciless desert. 
My take on the city varies depending on my mood, but it’s pretty safe to say that despite everything this town remains my home, whatever exactly that means. 
One of the lingering vestiges of Vegas’s past remains in the restaurants, many still offering bevies of beef for bargain prices. Jerry’s Nugget upholds this tradition, with their prime rib special proudly touted.

Local’s casinos are smaller and less glamorous than the multimillion dollar mega-casinos that operate along the strip, but the trade off is noticeable when it comes to prices. Locals joints can often afford to offer $9.99 steak and lobster specials, whereas some of the ritzier joints will set you back at least $30 for a similar meal. 

I worked in a casino cafe/buffet as a teenager and ever since I’ve had a soft spot for diner coffee. Always necessary in a casino bistro like this!

I got a salad with double tomatoes as Antho prefers his salads sans them. 
I only ate half of my salad as it was pretty big in and of itself, and with creamy bleu cheese dressing I knew it wouldn’t take much to max out, and we had a lot more food on it’s way! 
Like Calimari and this Spicy Bloody Mary. Both were delicious!

When the prime rib actually arrived, it was gargantuan. You might not be able to tell from the photo, but that’s a nearly 30oz piece of nearly raw bovine. Delicious, but oh-so-filling. 

Even after scarfing down as much as I could with their delicious horseradish sauces (creamy and raw versions), I was left with more than half. There’s also a large bone running along the length, which I’ll gladly save and use for beef stock later on.

Jerry’s nugget has their very own in-house bakery, which means that all these tasty desserts are freshly made! No wonder they show them off right at the front entrance to the restaurant, may as well prime your stomach for dessert the moment you walk in.
I did not have dessert, though, for the record. ^^;;
Far too full after our meal..maybe next time!

Don’t the strawberry rings look yummy? It’s a Jerry’s Nugget specialty!

Another day, another adventure.
It was a lovely daytime date with my sweet Antho, and we have meat for days!
While Antho likes to grab it and eat hunks of it cold and rare out of the fridge, I’ll likely fry up some steak and eggs or make tacos or stew out of my left overs. As delicious as it is in it’s original state, I could see searing a hunk of it or braising it low and slow yielding a tasty new iteration. 
Have you ever taken advantage of a casino meal deal like this? 
How was it? ^_^

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Las Vegas Indoor Swapmeet

Do you have an Indoor Swapmeet in your area?
We have a couple of different swap meets here, but we’ve only gone to this one so far. 
Now that I know what an adventure they can be, we’ll definitely have to make the time to check out the rest!

You know it’s got to be good, the force is strong here!

 Walking up to the building I wasn’t really sure what to expect, as it’s not the most exciting looking thing…but just goes to show once again that you really can’t judge a book by it’s cover.
Admission is only $1 and the rules are simple.

The place was popping!
And yes, there is a young man dressed as the Red Power Ranger!

And you’ve got Dolores here (not her real name) right up front to answer any questions or inquiries you may have, be it locating the loo or starting your own business!
The place itself is labyrinthine, so the best bet is to just start heading down the aisles one at a time. 
You never know what you’ll find!

It started out relatively normal, with these awesome shoes!

All sorts of cool sweaters and ponchos!

Then we get to these Guy Fawkes inspired ski masks…

All sorts of novelty pipes!

Then you come to this indoor jungle…

Someone brought their guide dog. 🙂

Lingerie, anyone?

We found some of our people! After a lovely chat about our shared love for tie-dye, we carried on, my wayward sons.

Hidden in a corner was this little pet shop with all sorts of birdies chirping away!

There were even turtles!

Oh, he’s a vicious little bugger!

The exit doors were painting like a fish tank. Fun!

I don’t know about you, but I found that funny. Bit of an oxymoron… regardless, I commend them for endeavoring to offer a bee-friendly substitute for a delicious non-vegan foodstuffs.

Definitely feeling the Halloween-vibe!

I have to admit I was a bit surprised to realize just how many of the vendors were really kids our age who’d opened a booth selling toys from our childhoods! 

Um, Buster Sword?! Yes, please!!

And when we turned yet another corner we found a man with a repertoire of reptiles!

This big fella was taking a nap in the kiddy pool. D’aww! He looks so warm and cozy. ^_^
A side-effect of reptile companionship: all the shed skins you can collect!

We made one final lap and I was drawn back to the bird store. They’re just so cute!

We had a lot of fun! 
I definitely look forward to scoping out some of the other swap meets in our neck of the woods.
Have you ever been to one?
How was it?

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Las Vegas: Halloweeny sushi date with Antho

いくら軍艦寿司, Ikura gunkanzushi
Antho and I have many things in common, from our blue-tinged hair to an enthusiasm for Doctor Who and backpacking. Happily, sushi is one thing that we both greatly adore so our choice on date nights is usually quite an easy decision. We even share a profound appreciation for the glory of sea urchin! As such it makes an ideal choice for those rare nights we two get to go out and celebrate our coupleness.

A top choice for us to satiate our need for sushi in Vegas is Sushi Twister.
One of the bigger selling points for me is that the restaurant is owned and operated by Japanese staff, so I get to bust out my rusty Japanese skills and impress my guy. Winning!
Their specials board changes often, but we’re always happy when they have super white tuna!
shima aji in the front, super white tuna behind
Shima aji’s appearance made me exceptionally happy as shima aji is traditionally considered a summer season fish in Japan and I don’t think I’ve ever encountered it in a restaurant stateside. The oily fish has a rich, supple flesh without the fishiness of other mackerel. I’m a big fan of aozakana (blue fish), and the seasonal specialties of Japanese cuisine are one of the things I miss most. 

At Sushi Twister typical All You Can Eat rules apply. Lunch garners you a 1 hour time limit, dinner an hour and a half, only order what you can eat as you’ll be charged for left overs, etc. 
We’ve yet to have leftovers. 😉

ゴマわかめ, Goma wakame
Seaweed salad is a must! I love how the seaweed maintains it’s uniquely crunchy texture in the dressing, and it gives a nice boost of healthy fiber to an otherwise white-rice heavy meal.

白まぐろ握り寿司, Shiromaguro nigirizushi
Mm, super white tuna! The sauce looks suspiciously like momoji oroshi, which is A-OK by me. Antho isn’t particularly fond of the sauce as he feels it’s too strong for the subtle fish to really shine.

They’ve decorated for the fall! 
I also find the description of the sake amusing. 

The chefs hard at work on a busy afternoon.

Maneki nyanko! Always a friendly face in any Japanese restaurant.

Conger eel tempura. 
The crispy tempura coating compliments the tender meat inside. 
The sauce is a rich reduction of unagi tare.
Nothing especially unusually or unique about these, just your standard tasty shrimp tempura.

Baked Mussels
Always a favorite of our’s. This is one of the few dishes that my several impaired sense of smell has actually been able to pick up on! Pretty cool.

Baked Scallops
We’d never actually ordered this dish until this visit. It was alright, Antho didn’t care for it. There were sautéed onions and mushrooms mixed in with the itty bitty scallops, which he felt detracted from them.
From front to back: Octopus, squid and surf clam nigiri.
The octopus nigirizushi.
I always try to order these three, as they’re light and clean with a subtle flavor and chewy bite. 
Sometimes the octopus is raw rather than pre-cooked, which is my personal preference. Still lovely!

Ika nigirizushi.
Squid is one of my favorite methods to test the legitimacy of a sushi restaurant. I always prefer places that add notches to the squid as it helps to soften the otherwise potentially too-chewy texture of the cephalopod. There are few things as unpleasant as getting a big thick rectangular slab of rubbery squid that takes forever to masticate. Sushi Twister does it right, though there was an unexpectedly large dab of wasabi on the piece Antho grabbed causing him a bit of a surprise. 

Hoki, or surf-clam, nigirizushi. This is one of Antho’s favorite mollusks and it also happens to be quite a photogenic one with it’s vibrant pink tip.

The Halloween Roll! Once I saw it on the specials board I knew we had to try it.
Pumpkin tempura, Shrimp tempura and cucumber inside topped with shrimp and quadruple sauce!

Amaebi nigirizushi, one of my favorites! The tender nearly-translucent flesh of the shrimp has the slightest bit of briny and a lot of sweet flavor to it’s succulent flesh. They removed the tails, which was a nice gesture. I always feel awkward when served sushi with the tails on, and I generally just eat it. XD Extra calcium!

At Sushi Twister they give you the option to order the sweet shrimp’s heads deep-fried. I always say yes! All the little spines become crispy while the interior of the shrimp’s head becomes a delectable burst of shrimpy intensity. Not for the faint of hearted, I suppose, but Antho and I both enjoy them!

Salmon nigirizushi. A little more tame than deep-fried crustacean craniums, eh? 
Salmon is one of my favorite fish, period, but especially served as sushi. Mm!

The roe is always a lovely addition. Don’t they look like little Dragon Balls?

Uni gunkanzushi.
Ahh, sea urchin, a much maligned treat of the sea is where we capped off our meal. We were both growing quite full and had done more than our fair share of damage to the ocean’s ecology, so after this round of urchin gonads we wrapped it up and paid our bill. 
Do you enjoy sushi?
What’s your favorite? ^_^

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Japan: Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo 2012-08-16

Not everything is quite what it seems…

One fine summer day I decided to embark upon a quest to visit the Museum of Contemporary Art  Tokyo, or MoT, an art gallery in the Miyoshi district of Tokyo.

It’s a lovely art museum nestled into a quieter neighborhood of Tokyo, one not particularly bustling with tourists. Walking there ended up being something of a mission all in it’s own, as my gps signal was unreliable and I found myself exploring wonderful little pockets of the town I hadn’t expected to encounter!

Beautiful flowers like this were prone to popping up in the most unexpected of corners, and they always made me smile. 🙂

I happened upon Tomioka Hachiman Shrine temple tucked away in a residential neighborhood, for one, was a fun surprise to stumble upon!

A lone man walks along the pathway.

Paying his respects. 

Gates framing the city beyond.

A couple of cicada shells clinging to a leaf. 
I was so excited to capture this shot!
I love the hum of the cicadas during the summers, as they’re abundant both throughout the mojave desert and Japan. Their song will always remind me of warm, happy summer days.
I know many people find them creepy, but they’re harmless! 
I think they’re kind of cute in their own goofy way.

This guy, though? 
Well…maybe if he saw a dentist…
Do you recognize this creature?
It’s a recreation of one of the angels/Giant God Warriors from Nausicaa!!
In a true stroke of coincidental luck, I had watched Kaze no Tani ni Nausicaa the night prior, so I was fresh up to date on my references for the exhibition. I had semi-mistakenly believed it to be an Evangelion related exhibit- which, it kind of is, but isn’t? 
See, one of the brilliant minds behind the phenomenal anime Neon Genesis Evangelion worked together with one of the minds behind studio Ghibli to contribute to and create a stop motion/live action film that debuted in this museum called “God Warrior Appears in Tokyo”
The museum was doing an entire exhibit dedicated to the tokusatsu (giant monster) movie genre, with one of Gojira’s full-skins (costume) on display! 

There was also a fashion oriented exhibit that was interesting, though fashion is not so much my forte. 

Not a bad view of Skytree, either, eh?
Oh no! Attack of the giant grumpy onii-san! X3

Miniature models of the city that had been used in the stop-motion film were available for visitors to photograph or pose with. 

The view of the courtyard was also lovely to take in while waiting in line. 

All the extras and cut-out figures!

So much detail went into all the props!
All the miniatures of Tokyo were really fun. 🙂

Such cute little tanks!

These cars were cool!
I’d love to decorate a car like that.
Would it become a traffic hazard? ^^;
Then there’s this guy.

A lounge area was available for resting your legs between exhibits.

Just another normal view of Tokyo town.

The exterior was beautiful during the sunset.

This building was being demolished or had deteriorated or something?
Whatever the case, it was interesting to see.

I stopped in Ginza for some takoyaki, then headed out towards Shibuya to check out the world famous Womb…

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Vegas: 710 Visuals performance at the Womb Room

One of the most gratifying aspects of life is when things come full circle. Good writers often include examples of this karmic turn around in their media be it through visual gags, narrative, or character development. 
It was with special pleasure, then, that 710 Visuals accepted an offer to perform at the Womb Room, the same venue where we’d originally witnessed liquid light art in action and been inspired to invest our time and energy into the medium ourselves.

Photos and video below!