Spider Rent

While writing out my rent and utility checks, my girlfriend, whom I was on the phone with at the time, instant messaged me this article. It details the email correspondence between a bill collector and someone she is tasked with to pursue on a late bill. I rarely laugh out loud while staring at this monitor by myself, but in this case, I had more trouble stopping myself from laughing.

Thanks to Brenna for the link!

[Edit – Crazy: I posted a bad link. Fixed it.]

[Edit 2 – Crazy: Looks like News.com.au got an interview with this guy. Link.]


I was surfing around and came upon this article at Wired.com. Basically it is the video posted above, which is an interview with Neil Gaiman. A book he wrote, Coraline, is being made into a stop-motion animated movie. Not only that, but its being filmed in 3-D by the director from Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas and James and the Giant Peach. It looks interesting and I’m pretty much game for anything by Neil Gaiman. I recently finished an excellent novel written by him called American Gods. I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in fantasy, sci-fi, or mythology.

I’m also a huge fan of stop-motion animation, so this movie looks to be right up my alley. It looks like Coraline will be released in February of 2009. I’ll be checking it out for sure.

Halloween 2008

Another year, another celebration of All Hallows’ Eve. Our annual Halloween party took place at The Point, a bar just behind the Bell in Hand in Fanuel Hall. It was a much more intimate venue and worked much better for us this year than the huge hall we had last year. If it had been just slightly larger and just been our friends, I think it would have been perfect. That being said, it was a blast. There were unsurprisingly several Sarah Palin costumes and only one Joker costume. There were certainly some creative costumes like the hot air balloonist, the pedophile, Roger and Jessica Rabbit and the Powerpuff Girls. Two larger groups had themes. Dave, Max, Nate, Jamie, Amy, and several others went with a monopoly theme. Dave was the monopoly guy. Amy was Chance. Jamie was Community Chest. Nate was Go. And Max, well, Max was a thimble. I think he would have had an easier time selling himself as humpty dumpty.

The other group costume was using the Celtics theme. Davidson and I were Brian Scalabrine and Scott Pollard, respectively, the only two white guys on the Celtics this past year, both of whom sat on the bench throughout the playoffs. Some of the girls dressed up as Celtics dancers and Duke dressed up as Gino because everybody was a winner.

It was a challenge to have a costume with no pockets, but it made things interesting. And yes, I brought my own coozie for my beer bottles. I’m just that awesome.

I have amazingly already posted my pictures here.

Happy Halloween!

Transformers get more human

My wonderful girlfriend linked me to a couple of pieces of art on DeviantArt. The artist took Transformers and tried to draw them as they would look if they were actually human. Some of them are spot on, others are just too generic to get who they are, but overall its a fun idea and neat to see the interpretations that translate really well.

Animated Characters in Color

G1 Decepticons in Color

G1 Character sketches in black and white

This actually reminds me of one of the episodes from the original series where Ultra Magnus, Arcee, Springer and I think one other had their minds switched with humans or something along those lines and the bodies they were put into were great human interpretations of the robots’ personalities.

Birthday 2008 Part 2: The Cake was not a lie

Day 2 started with me groggily getting out of bed, grabbing my work laptop and heading into the basement. An hour later, I had the network back up with access to the internet. Unfortunately, I ended up having to reset my router causing me to lose all of my security settings and MAC addresses for each laptop allowed on our network. Fortunately, I wrote most of them down in my little black book. This was followed by futzing around a bit online, checking e-mail, message boards and news sites, then starting to do a little packing.
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Birthday 2008 Part 1: The Big Haul

Year to year, I have to admit, I’ve had some pretty good birthdays.

Part of this might be due to summer weather or no school or one of a dozen other reasons.

Last year kind of sucked. Things were pretty busy and I didn’t think about it until it was too late to plan anything. Rather than do nothing at home by myself on my birthday, I just figured I’d come into work. It didn’t occur to me how many people on the team would be on vacation or that most of the rest would forget, but work I did that day with little to no mention of a birthday. I ended up needing to stay late to work on something to top it all off.

Not this year. This year I promised myself something better. In talks with Davidson, he had mentioned a friend of his doing a variation of a pub crawl, but something slightly more geeky. Geek happens to be my specialty. About a month ahead of time, I sent an email out to all of my very geeky friends. I outlined a two day event of epic proportions to herald this grand celebration of my birth.

On Saturday, August 16th, we would go to Randolph and catch a movie and from there move along the Red Line hitting up the New England Comics in Quincy and Harvard Sq., Newbury Comics in its multiple locations and top it off with Comikazi in Davis Square. Afterwards, we would grab some dinner and retire for the night.

On Sunday the 17th (my actual birthday), we would get an early morning toy run to Toy Vault in before heading back to the house, where we would then play Mario Kart Wii, Smash Bros. Brawl and Rock Band until all hours of the night while grilling up some food.

Things didn’t go quite according to plan.
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Back from Otakon 2008

I am back in Boston and exhausted from my long weekend in Baltimore. Otakon 2008 was a blast. I really had a good time. It was great to meet up with everyone and see all the costumes, panels, anime and stuff to buy this year. I’ll try to get some pictures up tomorrow. No promises on timing for a write up of the weekend. I am home, but now the race is on to pack and get ready for the big move on September 1st.

It should also be noted that as I was walking out the door on Thursday to leave, Davidson convinced me to bring the tube despite the extra baggage fees. As it turned out, Joaquin ended up taking his luggage as a carry on and checking in my tube.

Airline Fee'd

Today we leave for Baltimore. Peg, Joaquin, Brendan, and myself will be flying down and meeting up with aDam and Janine (the Canadians) and Brenna, Ruth, and Mas (the upstate New York contingent) and will be attending Otakon tomorrow. Otakon is the largest anime convention on the east coast. Approximately 23,000 attendees each year. Quite large.

I don’t leave for about another hour and ten minutes, though. Naturally I’m spending that time furiously packing my luggage since didn’t do enough of that last night. Unfortunately, with the economy the way it is and the gas prices the way they are, it was brought to my attention this week that airlines (even more of them now) are still charging for checked in baggage. We’ll be flying AirTran. I had Joaquin look up what the policy is and he found this website, airfarewatchdog.com.

Airline Fee\'d

AirTran is charging US$20 for a second piece of luggage to check in. Thats US$40 for both ways. This means I’m not bringing a second piece of luggage. This also means that I can’t bring the wooden sword that is part of my costume since the tube I carry it in is too large to be a carry on and would be considered a second checked item. The sword is the most recognizable part of my costume and is really what other people see and immediately associate with my character. I would categorize this as ‘sucking big time’.

The sad thing is, looking at that chart, AirTran appears to charge the least of any of the carriers, while American Airlines makes no misconceptions as they tell you to grab your ankles and think of Christmas.