Still here!

July 23, 2012

Hey, all. Sorry I haven’t posted for most of this year. 2012 started off rather badly for me – I got hit by a car while walking home after dark on New Year’s Day, and I wound up needing surgery for a broken tibia after having my painful and unsupportive knee misdiagnosed as a sprain by my local ER. I guess I fell out of the habit of posting while in rehab (for my leg!), and I apologize for slacking off. I haven’t stopped reading books, listening to music, or watching interesting DVDs and the occasional in-theatre movie.

James Clemens is a good fantasy writer, though I think I prefer the mystery/thrillers he writes as James Rollins. I’ve only read one of his Clemens books so far, so time will tell. The Disney/Pixar movie Brave truly rocks, and I love the vocal-casting choices.

I’ve also belatedly become a fan of Joss Whedon. I don’t know if I’ll be getting into Buffy or Angel, but Firefly and Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog are bright and shiny. I got into Firefly because a friend of mine is running a role-playing game based in that universe. I remember hearing about the series years ago when it was on TV (boo for its only getting one season), but I have no idea why I didn’t watch it at the time.


Oh the joys of red tape …

January 12, 2012

This may be my last post for a couple weeks. Cue sarcasm: My year has been AWESOME so far! I banged my knee up pretty bad on New Year’s Day. I hopped around for a week and a half thinking it was a bad sprain (that’s what I was told by a doctor), only to find out yesterday from a knee specialist that it’s broken. I’m waiting to get it fixed by a doctor I’ve heard as being highly recommended, and I don’t know how much computer access I’ll have after that gets done.

That being said, I should definitely be back on my feet by March so I can do Lunacon. I’m stir crazy, frustrated and stubborn, and I think I deserve to have a little fun. Also, even though I missed the Rockapella concert this past Saturday, I hear they’re going to be doing two shows in New Jersey on a Saturday in May. A good friend of mine plans on attending both shows, and as of right now I have every intention of being right there with her.

New year, same old stuff.

January 7, 2012

I hope everybody out there had a fun and safe New Year’s Eve. I had a good time, no offence to Dick Clark but he still looks kinda like a zombie, but my year took a bit of a nosedive after that. Anybody else out there a klutz? I managed to bang my knee up a bit walking home after dark on New Years’ Day. I’m OK, it feels better, but unfortunately I’ll be missing that Rockapella concert I was getting excited about. If I wasn’t worried about making my knee worse, or even better if I hadn’t gotten hurt at all, I’d be in Manhattan right now getting ready for an awesome show. Can’t complain too much – the friend I was going with is still going with two other people, and she stopped by to get my copy of the Rockapella Holiday Album, which she got me for the holidays. She’s going to ask the guys to sign it for me, and maybe they’ll write something nice. There will be other concerts.

Right now, my next Big Thing to look forward to is Lunacon. It’s coming up for the third weekend in March, and it’s going to be a good time. I know I’ve done shameless plugs here before. I’m getting a little extra excited this year because I’m a fan of John Ringo, the slated Author Guest of Honor. I just finished The Hot Gate last night – it’s the third book in his Troy Rising series, and it was pretty awesome. The downside to the excitement is that a friend of mine from Lunacon has gone ahead to Valhalla, or whatever her personal version of the glorious afterlife happens to be. There’s going to be a memorial service for her at Lunacon, and another one this month up in Boston during the Arisia convention. RIP, Badger.

Happy New Year’s Eve!

December 31, 2011

Sorry for the delay, but it’s been a long week. Last Saturday night, I met two friends in Manhattan for Sean Altman’s Christmas Eve Jewmongous, a Jewish-themed musical comedy act. It was good fun (won’t even try pretending it was clean), especially since Mr. Altaman and one of my friends know each other – she’s a super-fan of his and has been to many of his shows. Part of the fun was that we managed to get her front-and-center in front of the stage. He recognized her and chose her to be his Token Shiksa of the night – this involved him nicely picking on her, asking her questions, and dedicating one of the songs to her. Sean Altman, of course, was one of the founding members of the group Rockapella (he wrote the famous song Where In the World Is Carmen Sandiego?), who I’ll be going to see with The Shiksa and another friend or few NEXT Saturday in Manhattan. It’s going to be a good time.

At this point, I’d like to take a moment for people I find special who joined the vanguard in Valhalla this year (at least the ones I know about): my friend Joe from undergrad, Badger from Lunacon, Pete Postlethwaite, Elizabeth Taylor, Peter Falk, Harry Morgan, Jerry Lieber (half of Lieber and Stoller)

Happy (insert winter holiday of choice)!

December 23, 2011

Let’s see … Hannukah started at sunset on Tuesday, I’ve been reminded that today is/was Winter Solstice (which I believe cues the Yuletide celebration), and Christmas Eve is Saturday. I’m not that much into holidays (my main reason for liking Christmas is that I can usually find nice and special treats on sale afterwards), but I take these winter ones as a reason to wish merriness and happiness and to throw books in the general direction of people who might enjoy them. I participated in a Secret Santa Gift Swap at work today – I got one of those holiday-themed ceramic jars containing a few packets of name-brand hot chocolate, and a friend in the office got the mug and coffee I brought in.

I also found out that I’ll be getting to sleep in three days in a row for the next two weekends. Booyah for having two Mondays off for holidays! I have to work on New Years’ Day, but I don’t have any big plans for New Years’ Eve at the moment. And I have the evening shift that day, so it won’t be too bad.

Let the partying start

December 16, 2011

It’s now just over a week to Christmas. I’m still planning to attend Jewmongous in Manhattan with a friend on Christmas Eve, and she’s trying to get others to join us, but I’ll be getting up to some hijinks this weekend as well. My mom’s coming to visit this weekend, and she wants to take me to see something in Manhattan as a holiday present. (Forgive me, Thespis, for I have sinned. It’s been over two years since my last show …) Depending on what time we can get into the city, we may try hitting the ever-awesome TKTS half-price ticket booth to see what they have available. I’m rather leaning towards The Addams Family because I’d be interested in seeing Roger Rees perform live, but I wouldn’t say no to Wicked, Bonnie & Clyde, or Billy Elliot.

Random bit of interesting-ness: The Germanic musical team Michael Kunze and Sylvester Levay did a musical adaptation of Daphne Du Maurier’s book Rebecca some years back. I was just poking around on, and I found that there’s going to be an English-language adaptation of this musical coming to Broadway. I’m intrigued because I’ve acquired and enjoyed the German soundtrack, and rather leery because of what was done with Tanz Der Vampire/Dance of the Vampires ten years ago. Tanz der Vampire is the Jim Steinman/Michael Kunze musical based on Roman Polanski’s movie The Fearless Vampire Killers. It opened in its original German form in Vienna, Austria in 1997 and it’s had numerous revivals in Europe since then. It was adapted for the American stage and brought to Broadway in the fall of 2001 with Michael Crawford as the big-name star. I saw and enjoyed the production (enough to go back for the evening performance after catching the matinee), despite the fact that it was incredibly cheesy and the audience kept reacting to the fact that many of the songs were adapted from ones that Steinman wrote for Meat Loaf. I bought a copy of the double-disc Austrian cast album, and based on that alone I can safely say that the German-language version has to be better than what I saw in New York. This is why I’m both excited and nervous about this production of Rebecca.

Counting down

December 10, 2011

So it’s two weeks to Christmas and just over three until New Years’. Is it just me, or did all of this sneak up? Sorry for posting late this week, but it slipped my mind when I got home Thursday night. I was getting excited, because for the first time in years I have plans for Christmas Eve! No, I don’t celebrate Christmas. My plans involve going into Manhattan with a friend so see Sean Altman’s solo comedy show Jewmongous at Joe’s Pub. It should be a fun show. Sean Altman was one of the founding members of Rockapella, who I’ll be seeing two weeks later in Manhattan with the same friend. I’m getting all sorts of good music this winter!

Holiday madness

December 2, 2011

It’s a week since Thanksgiving, and most people seem to have survived Black Weekend in one piece. I worked most of Black Friday at my office job, and it wasn’t quite that bad during my 3.5-hour shift at the store that evening. I know one person who was up at 5 AM for a new computer, but he’s the only person I know who purposefully went shopping that day. It seems like the holidays keep encroaching on each other more and more despite (or in spite of?) the economy. I was seeing Halloween stuff out in August, Thanksgiving items were rolling out in mid-t0-late September, and I swear I saw a display of fake Christmas trees for sale before Halloween. To be honest, my favorite part of some of these holidays is the discounted tasty things afterwards – I can usually find good hot chocolate, candy canes, and baked-goods mixes for more reasonable prices in the weeks after Christmas. I’ve already got my eye on some special holiday teas I saw at a local gourmet food market. I know Christmas is still a few weeks away, and I don’t celebrate it other than wishing merriness to friends and giving gifts, but I’d like to offer these two videos:

Improv Everwhere’s Mall Santa Musical

Trans Siberian Orchestra’s Sarajevo 12/24

Happy turkey to all, and to all a good nom!

November 24, 2011

I’d like to start out by wishing everybody a happy Thanksgiving! Stay safe, don’t try driving home if you’re too tired and/or tipsy, and all that good stuff. There isn’t really anything big to report this week, so I’d like to share some holiday-themed images I saw on Facebook. My ‘puter’s not letting me actually share them for some reason, so use your imagination if you will:

A turkey with a lampshade on his head hiding from a man who’s searching everywhere in the kitchen.

A button reading, “I shot my first turkey yesterday, scared the shit out of everyone in the frozen food section … It was awesome!”

Yoda getting ready to munch down on turkey and fixings.

DC Comics (Superman, Green Lantern, etc.) sitting down to carve the turkey.

How do you tell it’s almost winter?

November 18, 2011

You can tell it’s almost winter when people start getting extra-cranky at the heating technicians. And the folks who answer phones for the heating techs. There seem to always be cranky people, but more and more have been crawling out of the ductwork over the past month and a half or so as the temperatures have started dropping. It’s pretty chilly tonight. Sometimes I ask myself why I keep living here in the northeast, then I remind myself of location, location, location, and that I need to find something that will make the expense of moving to warmer climes worth it. And if not warmer, I’d settle for less snowy.

Speaking of “snowy,” that animated Tintin movie is coming out soon! I know it’s a bit of a jump from talking about weather to movies, but there’s a good segue here, I swear. If you’ve never read Tintin, or it’s been so long you forgot, his little white terrier(?) is named Snowy. Snowy’s a good boy, but Captain Haddock was always my favorite character from the books when I was a kid. I’m pretty sure I read all of the Tintin books (I’d guess they’d count as graphic novels nowadays) at least once by the time I finished middle school. I’m definitely going to try to see this movie because not only did they cast Nick Frost and Simon Pegg as the voices of the practically-identical Thomson and Thompson, which is pretty cool in and of itself since I enjoyed Shaun of the Dead, but Andy “Gollum” Serkis is providing the vocal talent for Captain Haddock! That’ll most likely rock my stripy socks.