Category Archives: Products I like and buy

Shogunate and Ottoman empire designs

The output of new designs is low last months due to a moving house project, but I got some Shogunate and Ottoman empire designs to show. Firstly, I have two new Japanese kamon designs. On is fictional and the other is real.

I start of with the Hattori mon. It is a clan mon from the Shogun Total War game, although it is a little bit based on Japanese history. It’s a fictional clan based on a famous Japanese samurai and ninja Hattori Hanzou. I liked the Total War PC games a lot, in my opinion one of the best strategy games for PC. I bought the Shogun 2 verion some years ago and I thought “why not use one of the mon from the game”. This version is gold texture on black, but I’ve got also the game colors red on dark grey.

Hattori clan kamon in gold texture shirts
Hattori clan kamon in gold texture shirts by ejkaal
Shop for Tokyo T-Shirts online at

The second one is the kamon of the Inoue samurai clan. This japanese clan came to prominence during kamakura and edo period. The kamon consists of feathers groups in a cirkel. I used a gold texture on a black background in thid example.

Inoue clan kamon in gold t-shirt
Inoue clan kamon in gold t-shirt by ejkaal
Look at more Inoue clan T-Shirts at zazzle

When I started with my little business I created a couple Ottoman Empire designs. Most of them are meant for patterns with tiling. But you can use a single tile as a stand alone illustration. I did sold some products this way, but I never used on as many Zazzle products as possible.

Now I’m using templates in Zazzle, I can create products in large batches. A couple of Ottoman designs are revisited and tweaked for processing this way. There a other designs I can use the same trick on, but that is for the future. But first these three.

How to deal with a noisy anti social neighbour

Surely many of you have once in your life to deal with the question: “How to deal with a noisy anti social neighbour?”. And so have I. I’ve been living in my appartement for more than twenty three years. It is a small appartment building of six households. Not always the relationship with a neighbour was perfect, but with a bit of talk we were always able to get along.

You must know, the appartments are goverenment subsidized. Over 30% of homes in the Netherlands are subsidized, an OECD record. Last couple of years the government started to allow extra increases in rents for those housholds who earn average or more and are renting a subsidized house. Now, in subsidized housing you don’t get the upper crust of society, but as a result of this policy change two good and decent neighbours left and bought a house somewhere else in the city.

They were replaced by less than stellar neighbours. “Now, now, be tolerant!”. As I said befor a bit of talk works miracles. Unfortunately the young man who moved in next to me isn’t very susceptible to reason. He thinks his appertment is his “crib” and rules are for losers. Well, he doesn’t say that but his action speek volumes. Loud music during the day, shouting and talking deep in the night with his mates. And occasionally extremely loud parties well into the morning.

One gets used to everyting. But not able to sleep because the neighbour thinks himself a very cool hipster who needs to entertain his “bros” on a Monday night is something which gets annoying very quickly. Especially if one has to work the next day. I’ve talked to him at lease six times about the the noise he’s producing. But alas, he is just stonewalling me with a fake jolly and upbeat demeanor.

So, the neighbour has zero percent interest in the other dwellers of the building. Fair enough, he’s an immature dick and an anti social neighbour. I can handle the noise during the day. At night I need to sleep though. I was looking for a solution and lo and behold there is something like ear plugs for sleeping. Last year I have used them a couple of times and they work like a charm. If think get really bad at night I pop them in and I’m done.

I accepted this neighbour as he is and they sleeping ear plugs are an excellent backup plan. But this can’t go on for ever. There is a silver lining to this gloomy story. I too will soon be a home owner. Last december 2014 I decided to look for a property. And in about a month I’ll move to my own appertment. No more random politically motivated rent hikes and no more dubious neighbours. And I will talk about my new situation if the future for sure.

Reviewing dental hygiene products I like and buy

What I often read on other blogs are reviews, reviews about products the blogger likes or uses himself. So what could I review on this blog? Let’s start with stuff I use on a daily basis.

Like many people my age my teeth are a major concern. To many cavities and substandard maintenance. Jealously I look at those young American people with their perfect teeth. A couple of years one of my molars acted up. The dentist said a neighboring molar had a too much exposed root and the dentist suggested a root canal treatment. Or a visit to a dental hygienist.

The dental hygienist gave me a couple of good tips on how to prevent discomfort and do a better job in dental maintenance. The first was very simple, use a different toothpaste. One with an active component which protects exposed roots a bit. The one recommended and which I use now for a while is Sensodyne Complete protection. Works like a charm. No root canal treatment necessary.

Brushing isn’t enough, you should also use floss and toothpicks. Flossing I already did for quite some years. But it was always a fight with that damn rope. Either it was not smooth enough, or the thread was to thick, or it started to shred right between the teeth. Did I find a good product, after a year it was discontinued. Now I’m using a brand and a type of floss which will be available for quite a while; Oral-b. The floss is smooth, doesn’t shred or gets stuck. I always keep a spare roll, to make sure I won’t run out.

Toothpicks I never really liked. I thought flossing should sufficient. But the dentist kept on nagging on using them. After my visit to the dental hygienist I started using Jordan toothpicks, the flat version. They have them pretty thin and when wet the picks a quite flexible. I need a thin one to get really good through the gaps. Which they do very well. As with the floss I can’t live without toothpicks anymore.

There is one gap which needs a little bit more attention. And that is the root of the molar is a bit too much exposed. It really is erosion on the side of the molar. The way to clean it is to use those little brushes. I use 2.5 mm diameter brushes on the advise of the dental hygienist. Th idea is that with floss and toothpicks you can clean quite enough.

Electric is the way I brush and here the dental hygienist had also a tip. Don’t use the electric brush as if it was a manual toothbrush. Just slowly move the head of the brush along the surfaces of your teeth while applying light pressure. For about 2 minutes. Which brand I use you asked? Well, the gadget is from Braun, the removable brush is from Oral-b. There’s not much to say really, Braun and Oral-b are solid brands. Although I think their more fancy products are a bit overkill.

So what has all this dental hygiene gained for me? No cavities anymore and way less toothache. At my age and with the poor state of my teeth I need to watch out. But I don’t have that much agony anymore.