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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Fiction Authors

     On one of my not infrequent trips to the ARC thrift, I happened across a book titled Storm Front, by Richard Castle. It's not bad. It's not the best piece of western fiction I have ever read, but its not bad.
      So if you don't know... Richard Castle doesn't actually exist. I suppose he is as real an author as John H Watson M.D., and as real as people believe. But independent life...? He has none. Richard Castle is the title character on Castle, where he is a bestselling author who consults with New York's finest on their strangest cases.

     The book is a media tie in, one of the books the fictional Castle wrote and published.

     It makes me think of Spinal Tap, that famous nonexistent band, subject of  a documentary and two successful albums. There are those who still believe Spinal Tap was a real band and not three actors well known for tongue in cheek humor.


     It also makes me ponder how much our beliefs create reality. How real does something have to be to be believed in, and how much do we have to believe to make something real? a quick check on Google shows results between 20-50% of people who believe Sherlock Holmes was a real detective, and that historical figures such as Winston Churchill were fictional.

     We are human- much of our intelligence, much of our culture is about believing in things you cannot prove. Little Surprise then, that the things we love, and that entertain us become more real than the things that have more historical meat. I'm going to out myself here, and admit freely that my relationships with fictional characters are often more real and rewarding than my relationships with actual breathing humans. Just turned out that way, I'm afraid. 

     So I am gonna read this book, and look forward to Castles next bestseller


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Three Nights With Robin Williams

...And Ben Stiller


     As I am sure you have figured out, I watched the Night at the Museum trilogy this week, and I realized as I was doing so that it was kind of my way to say farewell to Robin Williams.


     I found myself really enjoying, but assessing the characters in all three movies, and the characterizations. The only possible casting choice I find dubious is General Custer, but Bill Hader is hilarious- he just looks a little young to me.(We're Americans. We don't plan, we do!). Stiller and Azaria as Larry Daley and Kahmunrah respectively get to have some great verbal duels that harken back to Mystery Men.


     But to Robin...

     He's great as Teddy Roosevelt, nobody better I could picture- funny, but wise and mentoring at the same time. I may be imagining it, or I may be dead on, when I say I could see he was really tired in the third movie. I think it's natural, and oh, so very human to look for hidden clues after something like Robin Williams' suicide; to say "he looked so sad in that last movie...I can't believe we didn't see it". My Ex, Sam, talked a lot after "the Dark Knight" about how someone should have seen that Heath Ledger was really messed up, and helped him out, that not all of his chilling and freaky performance as the Joker was performance, some of it was the medicine he was on. But I digress- I am a known Digressor. (if you drift off onto another subject in order to avoid a fight, does that make you passive/digressive?)

     The ending of the last movie just seems so...sad, for Larry, and for the New York Museum bunch. Even the epilogue, 3 years later seems sad for Larry. I was seriously choked up for about the last half hour.

     For one of the last movies Robin Williams ever made, it was not his finest, but it sure wasn't bad, either. It was a suitable cap on his career, giving us all the ways he made us laugh and cry, in a neat little package.

     Thanks, Robin, for everything from Mork to now, you crazy, crazy, beautiful performer.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Upgrades

     I'm going to add here to the list of body parts, I would cheerfully carve out and replace with reliable machinery.


  1. Left Eye
  2. Pancreas
  3. Stomach
  4. Lungs
  5. SPINE
I somehow managed to pinch a damn nerve, I know not how. I went to the Chiropractor, it's better, but not 100%, and it makes my right arm pain me in certain positions(like using the mouse on my desk, for example)

     So far, the score of people who got my joke about it do not include my Chiro, who was mystified

I told him that it must be the C-4 vertebra, because it feels like it exploded, and C-4 was kind of a silly thing to make a vertebra out of anyway...

     Yeah, he didn't get it. Neither did his wife/receptionist. 

     Anyway, I will probably be seeing him next week to finish the job. he beat me like a rug, but I don't think I am all back into place yet. It's also probably even more explosive now because I put a tiger bomb on it last night.


For the Birds

     Just an update on the Tango Bird, which I thought I would start with the following conversation between me and him

Daddy: You know I love you?
Tango: yeah
Daddy: you love me?
Tango: Yeah...I guess so
Daddy: You Stinker
Tango: Yeah

and yes, that is verbatim.

     These are Tangos new toys. I found them for $1 for 18 Pcs. down at Target. I thought : these might amuse him for a bit...
     He figured out how to take them apart within 15 minutes



and he completely forgot how as soon as the camera was pointed at him.


video


Monday, March 16, 2015

Distant Early Warning

     AAAAAWWWWWAAAAAAWWWWWAAAAAAAAWWWWAAAAAAAAAAUUUUUNNN


     You might be wondering what that is. It's an Air Raid siren. It warns of an Air Raid.



     This is Air Raid. He completes the Aerialbots, and by extension, Superion. He arrived at the PO Box on Friday the 13th, and I picked him up.


So now I have all five...nay, SIX Aerialbots. you see, in my prior post, I did not mention that Powerglide is an Aerialbot now too.



The tough little minibot becomes a targetmaster gun for Superion

So here they are...

Alpha Bravo

SkyDive

FireFly

SilverBolt



And together, they form the first of the Autobot Combiners...Superion. The excitement of an autobot combiner back the 80's...what can I compare it to? We saw Devastator kicking autobot tail whenever he showed up, and then suddenly...the autobots had one too, and he was FIGHTER JETS!!!!

I have seen folks on forums Gripe and complain about the combiner wars stuff, but I will tell you with no irony or snark- I think they did a great job on these figures, and I am looking forward to the rest of the year, and 2016 beyond. The Protectobots are coming this summer, and who knows what lays beyond?

Thursday, March 12, 2015

RIP Sir Terry

     A literary Titan passed today- Sir Terry Pratchett, author of the Discworld series and more, died at home from complications of early onset Alzheimers. Despite his being an advocate for assisted suicide, and being involved in a documentary about a swiss company that provides such a service, his death was reportedly unassisted, and surrounded by family and a cat.

Leonard Nimoy passed recently too, but I am not as affected by that. I'm just not.

     Simply put, I am hurting over this. It was years, ago, about 1988 or 89 when I came across this odd little book called "the Color of Magic". It was not his best, that title, for me would have to fall to Reaper Man or Night Watch. But there was something about it, something that caught and held me.

     Every new book was a welcome friend since that time: his adult novels, his young adult novels...I'm not going to claim I have every one of his books but I have most.

A Keen Satirical light has gone out of the world, and I think the world is a little bit less fun today because of it.

I need to go re-read my Pratchett books...
WHAT CAN THE HARVEST HOPE FOR, IF NOT FOR THE CARE OF THE REAPER MAN?

PEOPLE'S WHOLE LIVES DO PASS IN FRONT OF THEIR EYES BEFORE THEY DIE. THE PROCESS IS CALLED 'LIVING'.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Daylight Savings Time

Yes, it's that bad...




we sprang forward, now I need to get the birds to like the new schedule

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Apocalyptic Dreck

Quick post tonight, because I didn't get a chance to take any toy pics

     I watched a few minutes of  "the last man on earth" and I have to say...

The apocalypse redefines comedy, it appears. The old definition was something like: an event or speech which evokes a feeling of amusement or laughter". The post-apocalypse definition is something like "watching a sad, bearded weirdo amuse himself by destroying stuff while he slowly goes irrevocably insane"

    If there's any message in the show, it's that we are nothing without other humans to communicate with, to interact with, to civilize us. Sadly however that is lost in the morass of watching Phil stealing things he can't use and must abuse just because he can. There is a scene where he is eating and wipes his mouth with what is likely the original declaration of independence. His doormat is the presidential seal.

     And throughout, he is lonely. Profoundly and terrifyingly lonely.

     My verdict? I wouldn't watch it if  I were the last man on earth and it were the last show.