Of styro-stuffing, set-building, and starting to feel like home

When we toured the house in Utah that we’ve wound up renting, the first glimpse of the basement – an area as big as the living room upstairs, but in a decidedly unfinished state without even so much as drywall in most places – there was talk of contractors coming and going for the first several weeks that we were there until the room was done.

Having come from a house that had, for several years, had bare concrete floors, I took one look and said we’d take it as-is. I saw exposed beams and rafters from which lights could be hung, places where a camera or two could be mounted, unfinished walls where I could put acoustic foam to make the space a better recording studio, and the floor was nothing new to me. I saw the studio that this space could be. Read More

The Packening III: The Packening Continues

As is generally well known at this point, once my house was mine alone (and my kids), I started taking great strides – well, as many as I could afford on a tight budget – to make the place my own in a way it hadn’t been before. When I was married, there was a kind of clenched-teeth agreement (or at least it seemed that way to me) that, since I wasn’t going to suddenly become a different person and shed all of my interests and hobbies, those interests and hobbies were not to be visible beyond the confines of the room I was graciously granted as a sort of man cave. I never really worked out what was acceptable as decor in the rest of the house, because it quickly became a hoarder’s paradise. (And to be fair: we both contributed to that.) Once she was no longer in the house, I pretty much reversed that, not so much as an act of rebellion as an act of preserving my sanity in the early post-divorce days: once properly cleaned up, the house just seemed big and empty. A few lucky on-sale Hobby Lobby finds let me put my true colors on the walls.

Signs of the times

Signs of the Time Lords

When the Art Of Atari Poster Book came out, and I figured out Wal-Mart had frames all but ready-made for prints of that size for five bucks, well, things just kind of went from there.

Signs of Spacetime

Oh, and don’t forget the handful of arcade marquees that weren’t donated to Arkadia Retrocade.

Fantasy

How will all of this play out in Utah, where I’ll likely go from being a homeowner to a renter who’s forbidden to drive a nail into the wall? Believe it or not, there’s a solution in hand for this problem. I’ll cover that in a future post. Until then…all of my smaller wall hangings are ready to be hung on another wall.

Wall in a box

Star Wars “Vintage” T-shirt construction kit

Thanks to scans of the (now incredibly rare) 1977 Star Wars Iron-On Transfer book, anyone can now get some inkjet iron-on transfer sheets and make their own brand-new copies of the almost ubiquitous T-shirts that we were all wearing as kids way back when.

Or…you can roll your own. I isolated the “frame” that’s common to my favorite designs (I refer to it as the “asymmetrical chrome frame”) so anything can be put in the middle. For example:

So here is the empty frame. Click on it to see and download the full-resolution PNG file with transparency; simply right-clicking on this will only get you a low-res JPG.

Make a “vintage” T-shirt of any character you like – BB-8, Ahsoka, Qui-Gon, the lady in the Chewie mask, stoned-looking Wicket from the Ewok TV movies, even Bea Arthur or Jefferson Starship from the Star Wars Holiday Special.

Enjoy!

Heroes included at no extra cost

The FalconIf you’re not interested in a very brief rant about Star Wars figures, you might as well skip this one.

I see that the only way to get a 3.75″ scale Maz Kanata figure is going to be in a box set that repackages all the Finn and Rey figures that didn’t sell individually last fall. It’s kind of cringeworthy because the trailers made it very clear: these people, they are who the movie is about. Oh, and Han and Chewie show up too. We knew these people, and the new X-Wing pilot, were our new heroes.

Of course, in the southern states (such as where I hail from), Rey and Finn were peg warmers. It was almost as if everyone was rejecting the notion that a woman and a black guy were the heroes of the new Star Wars. (What, did they think Mace Windu was a fluke?)

So here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to go ahead and get this new box set, just for Maz. Maz is cool; Maz almost makes the movie and I’m beyond happy that she’s already confirmed as being in the next one. I will then take the spare Rey, Finn and BB-8 – all of whom I already have – and put them in my ’78 Kenner Falcon, which sits in the box 364 days out of the year. I will enclose a handwritten note about how foolish people still were in 2015, and how I expect whoever is receiving the note (and the ship and its new crew) to do, and be, better than we were in 2015.

Maybe it’ll be my grandkids.
Maybe it’ll be someone else’s grandkids.
Maybe it’ll be somebody who gets the message, in which case the Millennium Falcon once again saves the day.

That was really short

I has a babehSo I traveled back in time and the following conversation happened.

Me ’14: Hey, I’m you from 30 years in the future.

Me ’84: Right. You look more like Dad from the past.

Me ’14: Yeah, that starts to happen. I just wanted to tell you that I just saw the preview for Star Wars Episode VII. Read More