Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Sell your Stock

As part of my 101 things in 1001 days project (you know the one that I only have 20 things picked out and have not published at all), I am planning on giving up Pepsi for at least one month. So starting April 1st, No Pepsi For Me. Since I only drink Pepsi at work and I am not working the rest of the month, this is my last Pepsi:

As a type this it is half gone. I miss it already.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Wizard World LAme - Aftermath

So today I find this press release announcing the attendance at Wizard World LA at 27,000 fans. My first response is Hell No! My second response is Hell No!! Lets say for arguments sake that they are counting three day passes as separate people. Even with this boost I got to say Hell No!!

I would put the line at the start of the show on Friday at say 750 people. I am feeling generous so lets put it at an even 1,000. The crowd never seemed to increase through out the day. Lets assume a 20% turnover every hour. The show was open 6 hours so that would put that days attendance at 2,200.

I only attended the last two hours of the show on Saturday. I would say that the show felt half again as busy compared to the last two hours the day before. Since I am still feeling generous I will give them twice the attendance or 4,400. A small number and a cool show that returns this summer.

Now I did not attend the show on Sunday because of the LA Marathon. And as I understand it no one else did either. Lets take a wild guess and say 2,400 for a total three day attendance of 9,000.

So I figured I would put together a list of ways that Wizard got the numbers they are reporting:

  • They counted everybody that entered the main hall every time they entered. They helped boost attendance since they held the panels outside the main hall.
  • They took the three day attendance and multiplied that number by the number of days to get the Wizard Three Day Attendance (patent pending)
  • They ordered 27,000 hand fans for giving away at the show. These did not show up in time to make it in the freebie bags so they instead were given to the local homeless shelters.
  • The 27,000 count is accumulative for the three years of the show. By the way this would put the attendance at 2,700. If you had told me that was the attendance I would have believed it.
  • They flat out lied their asses off.
I am guessing the last one is correct.

Strange Lunch Conversations

WARNING - This post is not in good taste!!! If you are looking for tasteful insight look elsewhere.

This weekend here in Seattle there was a tragic shooting at a rave where a gunman killed six people and himself. The gunman's name is being reported as Aaron Kyle Huff. The first time I heard this was on one of those annoying news teasers that the local stations do. Because I was not paying attention, I only heard the Aaron Kyle portion of the name. As some of you may know, I have a very good friend that uses that name on all legal documents. Well after a quick Internet search I discovered the Huff and I breathed a sigh of relief.

Today at lunch I reveled my co-workers with the story that I just told you, and we started talking about the stories that always come out after incidents like one here. So we started a little game of what would they tell the media after I went on a Rampage.

Dan B. - "I knew all along"

Greg S. - "I wish I would have known... We could of hung out more."

Scott W. - "Son Of A Bitch. He stole my idea."

I can just feel the love in this room. :)

I also have to wonder - Why is everyone referring to Aaron as Aaron Kyle Huff? Did everyone call him Aaron Kyle in conversation all the time? Sometimes I just focus on the strangest stuff.

Update - Someone pointed out that he probably went by the name Kyle Huff and that is why they use his full name in the reports.

I said I was Sorry

Here we go again with another apology blog entry. It has been a really busy month and next month looks just as bad, so my blog entries have been far and few between. Since I am of the mindset that a little is better than nothing, I have decided that I am going to go back to the quickie blog entries until my work and personal life gets under control.

So in other words...


Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Damn You ME!

I blame this rash of Video Link Bloging on Mark Evanier. This clip contains 5 and 1/2 of the most famous trailer voice actors.

Wizard World LAme - Pictures

I forgot to put a link to the Hasbro pictures. They were taken with my phone and are generally all around lame.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Wizard World LAme - Day 3

I had such a great time going to Wizard World the last two days that I decided to go to a movie instead.

There were other reasons to help make up my mind. The biggest one was that Jim was going to a concert that night so I would not be able to hang with him much and the LA Marathon was basically started and finished at the Convention Center. Because of this most of the roads to the area would be closed. Not my idea of a good time.

So I went to see V for Vendetta.

This movie rocks. It is based on a comic by Alan Moore and David Lloyd. I had decided to not reread the book until after seeing the film so that I could experience the film was a fresher eye. But now that I have seen it I am looking forward to pulling out the old series so that I can see if Alan is the Nostradamus of our times or if the Wackowski Brothers were able to craft the premise in to the allegory of Bush's America. The central theme of the movie is so spot on to America of today that it is scary.

Wizard World LAme - Day 2

Since I had so much fun at Day 1 of Wizard World LA, I decided to spend Day 2 working.

I showed up at the Convention site at about 4:30 PM. Did a quick walk through the floor and realized that there were a few more people but not many. At 5 pm I decided to go see my first panel of the show: Marvel's Civil War. I kind of got the feeling that even the audience did not want to be there. I really enjoy Mark Millar's writing so I am sure that I will pick it up, but this whole crossover sounds so stupid. Marvel has a poor track record of crossovers that are going to "Change the Face of the Marvel Universe" that don't. The last big crossover was House of M. It reduced the number of Mutants in the Marvel Universe but increased the number of titles covering them. It is hard to miss them if they don't freaking go away.

I did actually spend some of that HARD earned cash that I acquired. I picked up the Fantastic Four Omnibus for $60. A very good deal for a difficult book to find. Plus it had the Kirby cover.

After the show most of the same gang went to dinner again. This time is was much less of an adventure since we went to the Farmer's Market. I had very dry Schwarma. I was kicking my self because after eating I found a Cajun joint that looked really good.

After dinner we went to the Figarowa Bar (The Un-Official Bar of the Con) and hung out for a couple of hours. Had a good time talking comics with people that do it for a living.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Wizard World LAme

So this weekend is the Wizard World LA show. Since I am in town for work I thought it would be fun to go to the show. Little did I know.

My day started at 4:45 AM when my phone alarm woke me up. I showered and headed in to the plant. It was their Friday off so I had the production area to myself. I made a ton of progress. At 10:30 AM, I packed up my stuff and headed to the con. Traffic kind of sucked but I made it to the show a little before noon. I had purchased advanced tickets, so I went to the advanced ticket line. Which is hard to describe. So imagine one of those rope corrals that are the staple of the long line, but without the ropes or poles or anything associated with proper line-age. So instead of a nice ordered line we had a bunch of people in a big group.

About 10 minutes before the doors opened one of the Wizard World Staff members walked up and down the line telling us that if we wanted our freebie bag we needed to stay in this line. Well I am not one to turn down free shit so I stayed. After about 30 minutes, a different Wizard World Staff member walked up and down the line telling us that we did NOT need to stand in line we could pick them up later. I could tell it was going to be another 15 minutes so I headed in.

Before I get in to details a bit about the show itself. It sucked!!! OK more details. The space itself was fairly large but they were only using 2/3 rd of it. There was a large publishers area with huge booths for Hasbro Toys, Wizkids, DC Comics and Marvel Comics. There was also a Huge gaming area that I never saw more then 1/3 rd full and a respectfully large artist alley, that was also only 2/3 rd full and had a TON of space between the rows. The saddest part was the dealer's area. It was probably only half again as big as the publisher's area but even that was not full. I am pretty sure that we had more dealers last year at the Emerald City ComicCon. The one thing that was kind of cool about how they had the dealer area was small islands instead of long rows of tables. It made it really easy to get around and made almost every booth a corner booth. I realize that they were able to do this because of the few dealers, but it was still nice. Overall i would guess that the overall attendance will be around 12,000 over the three days.

So the first thing I did was to get in the HeroClix Spectre raffle line. This was not actually raffling off of the GIANT Spectre Heroclix but was actually raffling off the right to buy one. Not to spoil the surprise but I did not end up spending any money at the Wizkids booth. Sorry Jim. The Fat Bastard in front of me and the Bad Parent behind me did but not me.

So after getting the soon to be worthless tickets, I did a quick walk through the con. I realized that I was going to need some cash if I was going to buy anything. So I searched around and found the one cash machine in the convention center. I put card in, went through the whole process only to have it tell me that it was an Invalid Transaction. After trying 4 or 5 times, I moved on. I decided to head up the street to find another cash machine. After about seven blocks, I found a Washington Mutual Cash Machine. Well I had no more luck there. So I called WaMu to find out what was going on. Apparently a business had reported that my card had been "compromised". Whatever the Fuck that means. It sure would have been nice if they had freakin' called me. So I tried to have the call center lackey find me a near by branch. Well that was worthless. So I headed back to the Con when I noticed down a side street a large Washington Mutual sign. Only 10 blocks away. Yippee!! So I get there and asked if they could help me get some cash. Well they were no longer able to find out my account number because my card had been "compromised". Whatever the Fuck that means. They were also unable to find out my account from any other means. I pretty sure this was because they were incompetent. I ended up calling my office and getting my account number from my direct deposit information. I got my cash and headed out the door. I figured that I would take the shortest path and head directly to where the convention center is. Problem was that the streets did not run parallel to each other so I ended up going in the wrong direction. Overall it took me over two hours to get cash.

When I made it back to the con I had already missed all of the panels I was interested in, so I just wandered around killing time waiting for the show to end. When it did I went with Jim and some of his workmates on an Odyssey-ish like adventure to get some food. We ended at a Bob's Big Boy. I had not been to one in over 20 years and Eric L. had never been. It was a shame that they no longer have the giant Bob outside anymore. They have him in the lobby now. No one lets there kids out any more.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Restroom Behavior

This post won't mean as much since Beau went and Deleted most of his blog posts. Early in his blogging he brought up the issue of restroom behavior. His post was about the fact that people thought he was gay because he washed his hands after using the restroom.

So not that I spend a lot of time watching others bathroom habits, but I saw a new one this week. This young man did his business, then instead of washing his hands he went to the paper towel rack and fed out the required amount for a through drying. Then he washed his hands and used the newly fed towels.

I have two thoughts about this:

  1. This is a very efficient way to get your paper towels.
  2. This is very unsanitary. I mean what the hell!!!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Downloading Podcasts

A little Tech lessen here. There are two ways to download podcasts to your computer.

The first way is to simple go to the Podcast's website and simple save the file to you computer and listen to it with any mp3 player that you prefer.

The second and recommended way is to use a Podcast Aggregator. The one that I use is iTunes but Juice is also highly rated by others. With iTunes it is simple to goto the Music Store and select Podcasts. This opens up a window where you can search and select the Podcasts you want to listen to. Then every time you open the Aggregator it will download any new episodes. Quick and easy.

Podcast Review 2 - Word Balloon

Welcome to the second in a series of Podcast reviews. Tonight I am going to talk about Word Balloon.

Where Comic Geek Speak is centered around guys talking about comics, so when they bring in a guest he is part of the gang. Word Balloon on the other hand, is all about the interview. The host of the Podcast (John Siutres) is an actual professional interviewer, so all of his conversations are informative and entertaining.

John is also a huge fan of comics in general with a deep knowledge of the people and history of industry. He does a great job being respectful of his guests, while still being able get answers to the tough questions. I have not listened to an episode yet that did not increase my knowledge with something cool.

Overall I would say that Word Balloon is the comic related Podcast out there. It is not my favorite but it is the best.

Rant Attack

Taking a break, so I thought I would break out a Rant Attack. This weeks target: Cell Phone Downloads.

While I can understand (while I do not agree with them) why they charge for ringtone downloads. The Record Companies need to pay their Police Force (RIAA) somehow. What I don't understand is how "they" can expect to get money for Wallpapers. Especially if they are advertisements. How can anyone be stupid enough to pay for the privilege to advertise someone else's product. I guess that is why the cell phone downloads are a billion dollar a year business and I have to work on a Sunday.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Podcast Review 1 - Comic Geek Speak

When I started this blog one of the things that I wanted to do was to make public some of my feeling on some of the many podcasts that I listen to. Well I've been busy... Anyway Jim asked me to recommended some comic book related podcasts, so that is what I am going to do while I sit in my hotel room.

The first Podcast I am going to review is Comic Geek Speak. This is my favorite comic related Podcast. The basic theme of the show is six guys sitting around talking comics. I am most amazed that they are able to have this conversation without stepping over each other all the time. As I have been experimenting with others Podcasts, I have discovered that this is a common issue.

As CGS has been getting more popular they have been able to attract industry guests to join the show. I have found that the guys are respectful of their guests without being to "Fanboy"-ish, a problem found in many of their peers.

Since there are six geeks, they have different points of view, which makes the conversations very lively. Although they all tend to be Marvel Zombies or DC FanBoys, they are willing to explore Independent Comics. As a matter of fact, I have found myself buying many of their discoveries based on their recommendations.

Every month they have a special show called book of the month where they do an in-depth analysis on a pre-selected trade collection.

Since the start of Infinite Crisis they have been doing special shows that discuss the latest issue. These shows have been a fun way to get new opinions on this great series.

The group goes out of their way to be spoiler free on the standard shows. Since the special shows are in-depth evaluations, they are spoiler heavy.

My only problem with the geeks is that they put out WAY too many episodes. An episode usually runs an hour and a half in length. And they tend to put out 3 or more episodes a week. With this output it is really easy to get behind. It is really amazing that they are able to find that much time to all be together.

Real Life Grand Theft Auto

I am suddenly becoming a link-blogger. Well I guess there is a theme... Live action versions of animated things.

Monday, March 06, 2006

When a Cartoon Jumps the Shark?

This post has two purposes.. to figure out how to add YouTube videos to my blog and to share this damn funny video. Enjoy.

I've Been Busy Give Me a Break

OK, I'm a worthless piece of shoe.

I started this blog with the stated purpose of working in non-concise verbiage, since my natural state of writing is to be concise to the point of not getting my point across. Well at first I was doing OK, but I noticed that I was slipping into old habits and promised myself I was going to stop cheating.

Well I guess I can see where that got me.

My problems have been two fold. I have been working more and my allergies have been so bad that I have had no energy. In the past I have gotten over the allergy-caused energy shortage by drinking lots of Pepsi. Since I have sharply cut down on my intake it has been very tough to get the required motivation to do anything other than not move. Which surprisingly requires some motivation and pre-planning to pull off.

The first step in solving a problem is to identify it. Since I can't cut back on work, I needed to fix the allergy problem. This meant that I needed to get rid of Gracie. :(

So on Saturday, Beau and Maryanne once again inherited a cat. The last report I got was that she is doing well and does not seem bothered by their GIANT dog they have. I for one miss having her around but I am noticing a marked improvement on my general health. I can wear my contacts again and my nose is not stuffed up any more. My chest is still congested but it took some time to get this bad so I'm guessing it will take a week or so to clear up.

So I spent a large chuck of time on Saturday and Sunday de-catting my place. This has just reinforced my plan to get a cleaning lady. Dan B at work has recommended his renter as someone that is in the Biz. I think when I get back from LA, I am going to set this up.

Speaking of LA, I am going. I leave on the 10th and will be returning on the 20th. What is cool about that time frame is that Wizard World's Los Angeles comic book convention happens to be the 17th - 19th. While I won't be able to spend as much time there as I would like because of the stupid work, I will be able to have some fun and will get to hang with Jim since he will be there for his work.