michaeldthomas: (Default)
It's Spring!

1- Caitlin is off all week for Spring Break. This will be a quiet vacation since Lynne is working.

2- We had a wild weekend. Our friends [livejournal.com profile] michaellee and [livejournal.com profile] frozendragon crashed with us on Friday night and Saturday night at my mom's. They're now off on their pre-honeymoon in Ireland. They also went to the c2e2 convention with us.

3- c2e2 was massive. I'm not a big fan of cons with over 30,000 people, but we had a great time. Lynne talked to some of her and Sigrid's probable Chicks Dig Comics contributors, and then she signed books for an hour at the Alien Entertainment booth with [livejournal.com profile] taraoshea. They had a decent crowd.

We probably talked to a few dozen of our friends over the course of the day. We also met a bunch of new awesome people.

I now own The Sontaran Experiment toy set, and Caitlin owns an Adipose stress toy (her gift for good behavior at Grandma's). I love living in a world where they make all of the toys I wanted when I was 10. :-D

4- We attended The Middleman reunion panel and had a wonderful time.

5- After the panel, we went out to eat in Chinatown with a bunch of people. I would say more, but we were sworn to secrecy by one of our ringleaders. WHAT'S SAID AT THE PHOENIX, STAYS AT THE PHOENIX. ;-)

Good Times. :-)
michaeldthomas: (Default)
1- Caitlin is still progressing. :-)

2- I spent this week doing small home repairs. I replaced a borked drain on our kitchen sink. Thank the maker for youtube repair vids. I love that I live in a world where I can learn how to repair things in minutes rather than paying big money to a plumber.

3- We had a wonderful visit from our friend Sigrid on Wednesday. We watched Doctor Who, shared stories, and ate pizza. She also had a chance to talk to [livejournal.com profile] rarelylynne about a SEEKRIT PROJECT. Good times...

4- It's the 25th anniversary of the Challenger Space Shuttle Disaster today. I was in 6th Grade eating lunch when they announced it over the PA. It's still devastating. I cried a little last night during the PBS NASA documentary that covered it and the Columbia Disaster. I truly believe that these two tragedies are the reason why my generation in the US isn't pushing our government for more manned space exploration. Space became scary instead of wondrous.

5- The comic book magazine Wizard ended its print edition while firing everybody this week. I used to occasionally read it back in the 90s. I was never a big fan since it had too much of a frat-boy attitude. It was much more focused on the exploding booby titles from places like Top Cow than the thoughtful Indie and Vertigo comics that I was reading.

Still, it's a shame to see it go. I'm not pleased in general by the death of the print magazine as a viable form of information and entertainment. Wizard once sold over 100,000 copies per month in the late 90s. It was down to about 20,000 last month. For all of its problems, it paid its writers, had an editorial process, and published the occasional well-researched article. The comic book websites can't replace that.

Wizard claims that it will open a e-magazine, but so did Starlog. They seem happier now running crappy conventions with c-list celebrities than covering an industry.
michaeldthomas: (Default)
Read all the comics!

I've been an on-again, off-again comic book fan for years. I started off as a huge fan of The Avengers when I was in Middle School. I stopped reading comics in High School, but [livejournal.com profile] taraljc dragged me back in when she forced me and my roommate N. to borrow and read her Watchmen and Sandman collections during our Freshman year at U of I. I spent the next decade collecting comics (especially the Vertigo titles), going to cons, and buying tons of merchandise. Around the time Caitlin was born, I lost interest. Not to mention, the comic book hobby was simply too expensive for our household. By 2005, [livejournal.com profile] rarelylynne had convinced me to donate my entire collection to NIU (she's good at that).

In the last couple of months, I've been burning out on reading prose (I blame my writing). After hanging out with some comic book pros, the bug returned. The plus about reading comics in 2010 is that my public library is fully stocked with collections. So, I've been on a tear while Cait has been watching her PBS Kids shows and Disney DVDs.

I know that a few of you are comic book fans. I would appreciate some recommendations (especially by female creators). Also, feel free to start a conversation with me about any of the things I've read this year. :-)

So many comics... )
michaeldthomas: (Default)
Well, we have a date. Caitlin's hip surgery will be on December 7-- Pearl Harbor Day.

My 36th Birthday is the next day. Hooray! :P

Otherwise, Cait's summer vacation is fine. She's bingeing on Disney movies and audio books while I try to catch up on 8 years worth of comics.
michaeldthomas: (Default)
Hey, we had a day off!

[livejournal.com profile] rarelylynne decided that the Thomas family should have some fun on Saturday.

1- We saw Iron Man 2. It delivered on our expectations. My inner 12-year-old loved it. In my youth, my comics of choice all involved the Avengers (Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hawkeye, the West Coast Avengers). I had no interest in the Mutant titles. Many years later, I'm very happy to see the essence of what I enjoyed transformed into amazing action films. Caitlin loved the fights and explosions, and Lynne shipped Tony and Pepper like Fed Ex. Good times. The only thing that sucked was the theater eliminated its free-pass program for people in wheelchairs. Since they collect money for the Children's Miracle Network (which includes Children's Memorial Hospital), I momentarily considered asking the manager for Caitlin's cut instead.

2- The rest of the day involved eating, reading, lounging around, and watching Season 1 of Buffy. Caitlin really enjoyed the whole Buffy/Angel thing in the episode "Angel." I think Cait wants to be a Slayer when she grows up.

3- Since we live in THE FUTURE, Lynne and I kicked back with some wine and the live stream from the Nebula Awards after we put Cait to bed. We really wanted to be there, but this was almost as good. We realized how embedded we are in the community last night. The very first thing we saw was [livejournal.com profile] shsilver working his tux. For some reason, the cam stayed on [livejournal.com profile] justbeast and [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna for most of the banquet. Lynne and Cat exchanged a couple of OMG texts, prompting Cat and Dmitri to wave at us and [livejournal.com profile] tobiasbuckell who was doing the same thing with Cat on Twitter (yes, we are all tech goobers in the Gen X/Y SF scene).

It was a lovely ceremony. It seemed like every couple of minutes we would get excited because one of our peeps showed up on camera. It's Mary! It's David! It's Jack! Kathleen's there!

We were ecstatic that Cat and Kage won. Our only regret was, of course, that Kage didn't live long enough to finally get the major award she so deserved.

4- Remember all of those blogs a couple of years ago about how women, PoC,and Gen Xers weren't winning the major SF awards? It's probably too early to dub this a sea change, but it's certainly a promising trend.
michaeldthomas: (YANA)
So, I’m driving home with Caitlin and listening to Fresh Air on NPR this morning. I have mixed feelings about NPR. Often I love its fresh, independent viewpoints. Other times, I find it dull and pedantic. Today they were featuring an interview with comic book/television writer Mark Evanier. Mark was talking about his new Jack Kirby biography, Kirby: King of Comics. For those of you who don’t know, Jack Kirby was one of the most important artists in comic book history. He co-created Captain America, Thor, The Fantastic Four, the Hulk, Iron Man, the X-Men, and the New Gods. His dynamic style defined the Silver Age of comics.

It was a fascinating interview that examined Kirby’s legacy and impact on American popular culture. Unfortunately, the final bookend involved a cutesy anecdote from the interviewer about how he sold all of his Marvel Comics to a friend for $75 and would now buy them back for $150.

Ha, ha. Because you see, Kirby’s work and importance is only tied to the monetary value of his commercial output. It’s like the asshat interviewer hadn’t listed to a single goddamn thing that Mark Evanier had said.

To top it off, they sent it out with John Williams’s theme from Superman. Apparently this is because Jack Kirby is best known from his time doing Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen.

Great job, NPR!

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August 2011

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